Year Long Learning

A lot of people who have discovered we are keeping our kids home from school will often ask when we start homeschooling. Many of the homeschooling forums I read talk about starting and ending times, vacation times, and holidays. They will discuss what happens when a child is sick, is a lesson continued or is it put on hold?

I can understand the questions of when do we start. Most kids start school at a certain age, have holidays off, have a couple of vacations scatter throughout the year, and don’t attend school in the summer. Many people don’t realize that children have been learning from us since the moment they were born and we are simply extending that learning style.

Learning happens all hours of the day, every day of the year. Each situation can present us with a learning moment. Summer seems to be our favorite season for learning. We learn about birds, about plants. We learn about the weather. We learn about the physics of a bicycle. We learn about lawn mowers, tractors, solar energy. We learn and learn and learn.

Gannon and Waverly tell stories about the things they see outside, or put the story to a melody and sing me a beautiful song. We search for Monarch caterpillars and watch them transform to beautiful butterflies. We spend our days in the sun, running through the grass, catching grasshoppers. We check the plants in the garden, and when they are ready, we eat our snacks plucked fresh, sun kissed and delicious.

I can’t imagine having them missing out on these essential learning moments because of a system that has been in place for a relatively short period of time. Imagine the freedom of hunter gatherers but with technology, safety, and health systems that weren’t before available. It’s a great time, in a lot of ways, to learn right in the backyard.

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