The togetherness of homeschooling

Teaching long vowel sounds while mopping the kitchen floor? In at least one place in the world, those two unlikely candidates pair quite nicely: the homeschool.


I was finishing up a few things after our morning family chore time. I was a little late getting over to the school area where the older ones were (supposed to be) already getting started. The floor had been prepped and the mop bucket sat filled and waiting, but the floor had not yet been mopped. My daughter impatiently waited in the kitchen doorway for me to get her started on her kindergarten work for the day.

I thought, “Today she is supposed to begin learning long vowel sounds.” Then, I thought, “She’s here, and I’m here, so let’s just go ahead!” So, I mopped, and we talked. We talked all about vowels and the short sounds she had been working on for the past few months, and then we began to discuss long vowel sounds and what that meant. The mop water swished as my daughter jumped for joy at the excitement of this new concept. “I LOVE long vowels!” she said.


As the freshly cleaned floor began to dry, we transitioned to our school area, where we began to look at some words and flash cards with long vowel sounds. Thankfully, the 2nd and 4th grader had actually managed to get some schoolwork done in our absence.

This simple little story serves to remind us of two basic but profound keys in homeschooling; keys that unlock the door to practically endless possibilities.

1-You are there.

2-They are there.

We need to take more time to just stop for a minute and enjoy the togetherness of homeschooling. So much can be shared in the togetherness— the good feeling of a shiny clean floor, the wonder of a new concept, the aroma of the soup bubbling on the stove, making the soup first, the struggle to learn something challenging, a nature walk in the snowy park, the pride of accomplishment, the journey into a good book, the chores, a fun field trip, and all the ups and downs of regular, everyday life.

One day when they spread their wings and fly, the memories of those days of togetherness will sustain you. In some ways, those memories will sustain them, too.


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