Memorizing is Best Done In Your Underwear: Lisis Blackston's Interview

This is a picture of Lisis' son,
who shows his mom how to have fun.

Once, when she asked him to memorize stuff
He didn't get mad or raise a big huff.

He laughed and said "Sure! Heck, I don't care!"
Cause he knew he could do it in his underwear.

Lisis and her family live in Georgia and since her interview includes some poetry from a children's book, I just couldn't help writing a rhyme as an introduction. I guess I'm kinda like that penguin in the movie Happy Feet.

Anyway, back to Lisis. I found her when I went to the Zen Habits blog and read a post Leo Babauta wrote about education.

Lisis lives in Georgia and blogs at Quest For Balance, where she's on a "personal quest to find the balance between the things I need to do and the things I want to do… or finding happiness amidst the challenges of life.."

I'd say she's doing a fine job with that task and her son is lucky to have someone who will be showing him all about the balance needed in life. But in the meantime, he'll certainly be showing her what can be done with the freedom and flexibility of homeschooling and making sure they both have fun on the journey...

1. How long have you been homeschooling (or if finished, how long didyou homeschool)?

We started in the middle of Kinder and have just begun third grade... only one child.

2. One of the main benefits of homeschooling is the freedom and flexibility it allows. Can you give us a few examples of how this freedom and flexibility benefited you (your family)?

This one is HUGE for us because we love to travel ALL the time. My family lives in Costa Rica, California, and New York; so homeschooling allows us the freedom to visit them during the non-busy (cheaper) travel times.

We also love to take road trips and just bring the materials along. Every moment is a learning opportunity for us. Just recently my son learned all about the Great Lakes, Canada, and the Adirondacks when we visited Niagara Falls.

3. Another benefit of homeschooling is the fun factor. Can you give us a few examples of some especially fun times you had as a result of homeschooling?

Almost EVERY day of homeschooling is fun in some way. If we aren't having fun I figure something is wrong, either with my mood or his, so I take a break. When we come back to it later we usually can get right back to the fun of learning.

One of the funnest times we've had was blowing bubbles in the rain. It has to be just a light rain (no lightning or thunderstorms) but, if you do it just right, the bubbles get thicker and bounce on all the surfaces... the roof, the plants, the driveway, even the rose bushes! We must've looked crazy to our neighbors, but had the BEST time ever!

4. We all have funny experiences while homeschooling. Can you share one of yours with us?

I don't know if it would be funny to anyone else, but we laughed and laughed one time in first grade when I was trying to get him to start memorizing things... anything, so it wouldn't be intimidating.

He was reciting a poem from one of the Skippyjon Jones books, in his underwear, and jumping around the bed as he did so...

"Muchas gracias, Skippy-dippy-dango;
bye bobble-ito, boogie-woogie tango.
Muchos poochos, licky-sticky mango.
Gozo-bozo, chimi-chimi-chango!!"

At the end he would throw himself on the bed and laugh, then get up and do it all over again!

I remember thinking how much FUN memorization was for him that day, and I've never had any trouble getting him to memorize the "more academic" stuff after that.


Lisis said...

Hey, Debbie! How fun to come to your site and see a picture of my nutty boy!!

Thanks for including me in your series of interviews. I think this is a great idea, and a wonderful way to get a feel for what others are going through in their homeschool adventures.

Loved the intro, btw!! :)

Thomas Hochmann said...

Having been homeschooled myself, I can tell you it's a great choice if you have the time and interest to do it. I owe a lot to my homeschooling, I think!

When it came down to it, my parents and I decided to switch to homeschool after thinking about some simple numbers:

* 8+ hours at school each day (usually 8am-4pm)
* Vast majority of those hours are spent waiting for the teachers to discipline out-of-control classmates.

Not to mention that if I had to make the choice for my (future) kid(s), I'd choose homeschool for the additional reason that I don't trust education that's influenced by the government. A lot of stuff I learned was wrong or wrong-headed, and I'm sure it hasn't gotten any better in that regard.

Debbie H. said...

Hey, I'm glad you liked it Lisis. Thanks for participating. I love that picture of your nutty boy. :)

How interesting Thomas. You are about the same age as my oldest. I'd like to start getting responses from grown homeschoolers too. Want to be the first?