On a recent visit, my mother-in-law asked what curricula I’m using to teach the kids and how I thought the boys have progressed since we began homeschooling. I paused and then answered that I’m so close to the “action” that I often don’t recognize their progress. It’s not until someone else comments on their manner, level of understanding or conversation ability that I appreciate their growth.
She found my response puzzling, so I went on to explain that the day in and day out of different attitudes and levels of attentiveness combined with the absence of traditional “scoring”, make assessments more intangible. (My kids are “A” students because we go over topics until they master them, but the journey on the way to mastery is more challenging on some days rather than others depending on the aforementioned issues.) This is our 3rd year (wow!), so when I look at the continuum of our homeschooling, I can certainly see the progress (maturity, character, learning retention, etc.). However, day-to-day, it sometimes seems like we take 2 steps forward and 5 backwards! It takes a helicopter view to get a comprehensive perspective.
Needless to say, I appreciated my mother-in-law’s compliments on our children’s education. She thoroughly enjoyed sitting with them, engaging in meaningful conversation. At the end of the day, what has always mattered is that my children are a blessing to those with whom they come in contact. Any way education adds to that end, makes education truly valuable.
Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue,…But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 2 Peter 1:2, 3, 5-7