Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Day of Reckoning

Oh, I am so nervous!! Today is the day my children will take their placement tests for the school.

(Yes, I know it's Sunday so that seems really strange. But it's a different world over here, my friends. The school's weekend days are Friday and Saturday. But I digress.)

Today is the day that the world will see if I've been doing a good job for the past 13 years. If I've taught my children well. If I've been diligent. Shudder!! (Have I mentioned I have a problem with diligence?)

Today is the day when all that work and effort will either pay off or be revealed as simply not enough.

And I'm terrified.

Terrified because I look back at all the times we didn't do "school" because of life. The days where someone was sick or needed to go to the doctor. The days we spent organizing our home. The days when a friend with a sick or dying loved one needed us more. The days when we opted to go to the park during beautiful weather. The time spent visiting far away family. The days spent preparing for our move across the world.

And, while I think I made the right choices on those days, I realize that many people wouldn't agree. I know that many people think that if you homeschool, you should follow that 180 day, 6 hours a day, 5 days a week schedule. And that's just not been our reality.

The reality is real life is what happens outside of the classroom.

But will all that we have done "academically" be enough? What exactly will be on the test? Will Emily remember that algebra formula we've drilled so hard into her head? Will Daniel remember to indent his paragraphs?

When you are the homeschooling parent, all the burden falls on your shoulders. There's no one else to blame. And, likely, there's no one else to compare to. Are other 8th graders having trouble remembering division now that they've moved on to algebra? Do all 6th graders stumble over their multiplication tables once in a while? Is their handwriting really as bad as I think it is?

Am I the worst homeschooling mother in the world?

We'll find out once we get the results of the test, I guess.


ValleyGirl said...

I'm sure you're not the worst homeschooling mother in the world. I KNOW you're not. I think 'the world' will be pleasantly surprised at the academic level of your children and their ability to transition to a completely different type of school than they've ever known.

Leeann said...

How in the world can you think that the results of this test will measure what kind of homeschooling mother you are?

Do they have tests for faith? Compassion? Love?
Do the tests take into account major life events, like a move across the world, transitions, violations and other matters of the heart, head or spirit?

Regardless of the results of that test, don't you DARE base your homeschooling on them.
Unless, of course, your children are judged as being brilliant in all areas.

In that case, then, you can. lol

Tracye said...

I'm going to second what the others have said. I think you're being way too hard on yourself.

Anonymous said...

I am guessing that what they learned while "life" was happening was just as valuable as the traditional schoolwork. I know many people that are very book smart but don't have an ounce of common sense. I think you will find your children have a great deal of both.

Nancy M. said...

I can't wait to see how it turns out on the testing front. I am sure you have done way better than you are thinking. Testing makes people nervous, that's why I don't do it, lol!

My 6th grader forgets his times tables too! Most everything is done on computers, who has to have neat writing these days? I haven't used Algebra since high school. I would rather focus on the things that my child will need in real life.

Catherine said...

I hope their testing goes well, but please don't equate your homeschooling success with a test result! I'm sure you know this, but what you taught them at home was far more than can be measured on a single day with a single test.

Claire said...

I feel ya. If my kids had to take, I'd be up a creek. They are "behind" their grade levels in a few subjects, and yet, I love the people they are becoming. We spend more time being a family and doing things in the real world than we do school work. There, it's out, I said it. And yet, my dd is an avid reader, both kids love to write (and do it well, and on their own), they are both musical (where they get it, I don't know), and they are good people. There is no placement test that will measure that. And the same for your kids. You are obviously a good mom, and that's what matters, not if they can recite their times tables (for goodness sake, I use a calculator, don't you?). :)


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