“When you teach a child something you take away forever his chance of discovering it for himself.” ~ Jean Piaget
We started back homeschooling in earnest this past Monday after a lovely unstructured Summer. I was psyched. I was prepared in a way I wasn’t this time last year. Last year I flailed.
This year I had worksheets. I had lesson plans. I had notebooks and folders. I had an electric pencil sharpener. I was Gung-Ho and on-task!
By day 2 — Thorin was disliking me very much. I sensed my “enthusiasm” came across as pressuring and controlling.
On Wednesday I addressed this with him while driving in the car mostly so he couldn’t take off:
“So, do you feel stressed about homeschool?”
“No talking, drive, please” he said.
I immediately realized my error. I would start again with me and the truth:
“I am stressed about homeschooling. I feel like a failure. I think I am pressuring you.”
From the back seat: “Yes.”
“I’m pressuring you?” I asked.
“Do you want to go to the beach? I think I need to figure this out.”
“Yes. Good!” he said.
So, we went to the beach. He body surfed and I contemplated what I was doing wrong. I realized he needed to be a part of this. Didn’t I learn that lesson last year?
Thursday, I asked Thorin to tell me a story.
Santa and the Zombie
The mouse named Santa said, “Ho! Ho! Ho!” He took his beard off to go surfing.
He ran on the hot sand. He sees a Zombie down in a hole.
Santa hits the Zombie –BOOM in the head!*
Zombie gets up and dives in the water.
Santa farts and poops.
*Thorin wanted both characters to die horrible deaths. I did say: “Rule for today, no ones dies, please.” He offered: “Pooping then!” Fair enough.
Thorin and I are in this together. I have to remember that for this to work.
For more of Thorin’s stories and drawings: Stan Lee, It’s Thorin’s Mother Calling, Stephen King Has Nothing On My Kid, Thorin Tells Me A Very Big, Short Story About Heroism, Collaborative Storytelling.