Monday, November 19, 2007

When teaching, take a chill pill - don't drill!

As a home educator, I find myself constantly fighting the urge to check boxes, and time quizzes and fill in every single blank. When you compare being a student in a traditional classroom setting for 17 years, opposed to five years of homeschooling my children, it's hard to ... well, EMBRACE that freedom.

Yet, I'm making that a goal, of sorts, for myself this year. I have certainly done better than I had in the beginning. However, I need to release some of my anxieties and continue to trust the fact that I know my children ... deeply and intimately. I can stop wigging out over the details. In fact, sometimes I have let the details get in the way of the actual learning ... the actual enrichment.

One of the things I have started to do is play some Enya while we're reading or doing independent work (granted, that was my favorite make-out music in college, but it also serves this purpose well). I might throw in some nature sounds, too. I keep a few playlists saved on, so I can have a variety at hand. It's amazing how much better the creative, right-brained mind can calculate when the environment is soothing, and without a berating clock.

It is a non-verbal way to remind myself to CHILL!

We're learning. We are absorbing. It is to be fun and enjoyable. CHUH-ILL!


I Ate The Sandbox said...

Praise God from whom all blogging blessings flow. Great to find your blog. I am Laura, I am not a pastor's wife but I am a tattooed, formerly pierced, homeschooling Christian mom. Thanks for reminding me to chill out during school time, although we're taking this week off for Thanksgiving, so maybe I'll need more chill-pills, not less. Well, Jesus drank wine, too, you know. :)

Cammie said...

Hi Christine,

We do the same music-in-the-background thing too! We use jazz...a little Kenny G works well! Both sides of the brain just communicate better!

BTW, I will never hear Enya the same now...all I can picture is you making out now! Thanks for that!!!

Mama Podkayne said...

We use music too. We use rockabilly during art time. :)

Linda said...

Can I just say that I love your blog. I love your freedom to be you! And I love your advise to chill. There are alot of us in the same boat as you...I was not only a student in public school for 17 years, but I was also a teacher!! Try to shake those habits! I'm still pretty traditional in my approach, but I try so hard to be a RELAXED traditionalist!! teehee...maybe I should start a new style of homeschooling...I can see the blogroll now. The Relaxed Traditionalist Blogroll!

Anyway, thanks for the reminder! By the way, I have a coffee icon on my blog too..."Drink can sleep when you're dead."

Kim said...

When I was in grade 12, my english teacher used to have a jazz radio station on at ALL times. It was fantastic, and we all came to appreciate having light music on throughout the class!