Friday, 13 March 2009

Are we learning now?

I am frequently asked if I keep school hours, or even school terms, with my children. My husband is a school teacher so his time off naturally makes a difference to our day-to-day pattern, but the hours of 'education' at home is entirely down to me. I remember, as a newly Home Edding Mum, worrying that my eldest was not doing anything educational while I changed the baby's nappy! Now, I know better. And not just know, but feel, understand, fully comprehend, better. Moments arise at the oddest of times, moments of connection or intellectual availability. In contrast, trying to force a hungry, or tired, or frustrated child to learn something is like trying to stuff a floppy balloon through a key-hole.
And so, yesterday bed-time, when I heard my 8 year-old explaining food chains to his 5 year-old sister, I went to join in. We found her National Geographic Animal fact cards and set about linking them. We had to be a little creative with the bugs, after all a shiny greeen leaf beetle isn't, strictly speaking, an ant, but I think they got the point.

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