Monday, December 29, 2008

Back to school

I was sick for a couple of weeks around the beginning of December, and then with Christmas preparations, school days were sporadic the rest of the month. So we've already had our Christmas break and now we're starting back in. Today's big goal: Figure out where all the kids are in math. Tomorrow we're going to a bird show at a museum. A couple of years ago we read My Side of the Mountain, so when we heard that this bird show is supposed to include a peregrine falcon, we were all interested!

I also need to sign T. up for more swimming lessons for January and look into lessons for the girls. We're trying to get swimming out of the way before soccer starts up again in the spring. Luckily a local fitness center runs classes all year for kids who are off track. The trend toward year-round schools has helped homeschoolers -- not only are there more daytime activities available all year, but when we go out during the day, people just assume the kids are off track. Not that I mind strange looks and questions, but sometimes it's easier to remain anonymous and avoid awkward moments. Like these that come to mind:

Supermarket exchange #1

Cashier: Wow, did you all have a dentist appointment today or something?
Me: (wondering if we look like we're anesthetized) No. Why?
Cashier: Oh, I just wondered why all your kids are out of school.
Me: Actually, we homeschool.
Cashier: Wow. Really?

Cashier goes into a long explanation about how she used to know someone who was homeschooled and was really smart, but then she went back to school, and, like, she had a hard time fitting in, you know. Meanwhile, the four shoppers in line behind me are giving me dirty looks because they just want to buy their groceries and get out of there.

Supermarket exchange #2

Cashier: So, did you kids get out of school early today?
M. (who was about 7 at the time): No, we go to homeschool.
Cashier: That's neat. So what did you learn today?
M.: Nothing. We just watched TV. (Pause) We mostly do that every day.

If I remember right, we were taking a day off that day and I did let the kids watch TV that morning. But we went home and had a little talk about how to answer questions.


Barefoot Pixie said...

I so love those comments. Don't especially love it when total strangers hear you homeschool and decide to give your kids a pop quiz?

"You homeschool? Really? What's the capital of Portugal?"


Reg said...

Are the kids in Utah back in school? Our kids are out till the fifth! I really do not like nosy people. Glad you set them straight!

Tamary said...

I think most kids here are out till the fifth too. But since our family sets our own schedule, we're back in school this week, trying to get back in gear after our December/Christmas break.

Holly said...

oh boy. I remember once going to the playground and how Sienna was telling this nice lady about how i was taking medicine so that I wouldnt have any babies right now, because Jericho was autistic and that was hard. tact takes time. . .