Although we haven’t officially finished school this year, I’ve already been thinking about next year. So far we have been semi-structured unschoolers for preschool, kindergarten and first grade. It wasn’t what I planned, but that is what has developed. I’m not sure I want to continue in that same vein although I think my hesitation to continue as we are is more out of false sense of guilt than the fact that Caroline isn’t thriving. Caroline is doing fine. She’s reading well and interested in learning. That’s really all that matters with a six year old, in my opinion. She’s creative and happy and inquisitive. I call that success.
But I feel this compulsion to have a list of things to do. A checklist so I can prove we did something. I think it is part of my personality. I’m one of those people who makes a list of things to do and then when I do things that aren’t on the list I write them down too so I can have the pleasure of seeing them crossed off.
At the same time, I’ve been pondering some good posts written by other people. These are helping me think through my priorities and Caroline’s needs. I especially liked these two posts about six weeks on and one week off (a Sabbath).
I’ve also been thinking about this one Christian sent me last year.
Ultimately, I’m thinking about what will work for both of us. What will Caroline enjoy and what will I be able to handle the planning for? I continue to revisit Charlotte Mason and Ambleside but it always feels like such a huge learning curve. Every Charlotte Mason person I come across online spends so much time reading Charlotte Mason, discussing Charlotte Mason, and analyzing Charlotte Mason. I’m just not that committed to any learning philosophy. I’d love to do the storybook year idea above, but the thought of constantly creating activities and so on to go with it… I know my limitations in terms of time and energy. I’m not sure that’s how I want to spend the precious hours I have each day. I also know the limitations of our budget and that purchasing lots of picture books isn’t in my budget (as much as I would love it to be!). And trying to coordinate ordering books from the library and getting them at the right time? Not so sure.
So I’m pondering (to quote Brenda). And I’m asking God to show me what Caroline needs and what will work in our little home.