Back to My Homeschooling Roots

Oct 2, 2015 | Homeschooling, On Motherhood | 11 comments

Back to My Homeschooling Roots: Teaching my kids about Shakespeare!

Ok, maybe not that far back.

When I was a child we “homeshooled” for awhile and it was not cool. (My Mom knows I’m not dissing her here!)

But, somewhere over the last couple years, this train has come off the rails.

The procreating. The puking. The nursing. The kid who struggled to read and the other kid who learned to read without even being taught. The move. The unpacking. The farm. The surprise baby. The long division tears. The read a chapter, answer the question monotonous school days.

Forget it. This is not sustainable. There is no way I can do this for another eighteen years.

The daily weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Somewhere I lost my passion for teaching my kids. I began to second guess every move I made. Comparing myself and my kids (foolishly) to others…literally thinking, “Am I screwing my kids up?”, “Was the plan I had… just plain stupid?”


It all began with the unexpected love I found holding my firstborn in my arms. I didn’t want to ever let him out of my sight.

I wanted to be the one to teach him, Shakespeare.

It’s as simple as that.

One day the thought crossed my mind how tragic it would be if I didn’t get to experience sharing with him those beautiful words. One thought led to another… I don’t want him to just learn about the Greeks… I want to take him to The Parthenon.

I don’t want him to just read about farm animals in a book… I want them to be a part of his daily life.

I don’t want to leave his theology up to a Sunday School teacher… I want him to snuggle with me on the couch and talk about God.

But day by day, stress by stress, I’ve drifted away from those passions and desires and I’ve now found myself with a son who really doesn’t like school, a daughter who has to function on her own cause I’m so busy keeping up with the others… a baby swinging from the chandeliers… and to add to my misdirection I’ve allowed an abundance of boring textbooks to infiltrate our school…. that is something I NEVER wanted.

So,  somehow… somehow I’ve got to get back to my roots because… I wanted to be the one to teach him, Shakespeare.

So, today I called it.

I slammed those stupid textbooks shut and told the kids to get in the truck and we got the heck out of dodge.

Have you seen the sky this fall?

Have you seen the sky this fall?

It is so blue.

Back to My Homeschooling Roots: Teaching my kids about Shakespeare!

We escaped to Wisconsin. We found a tiny little orchard. Played with a pig. Ran wild. Rolled downhills.  We gazed out onto the orchard and dreamed of living in Door Country.

Back to My Homeschooling Roots: Teaching my kids about Shakespeare!

Back to My Homeschooling Roots: Teaching my kids about Shakespeare!

Then we found a little lake and we walked 40 acres of prairie flowers. We hid under giant oaks. We talked about our hero, Laura Ingalls and seed pods and frogs and we sang, “How great is our God… Sing with me, how great is our God…”

How could we not sing those words under that majestic blue sky and that towering oak??? This Teacher Momma feels reborn. Ready to wipe the slate clean. Pun intended. Ready to set aside many of the rigid textbooks that crept into our school.

And ready to get back to that pure… hungry… love for learning.

Back to My Homeschooling Roots: Teaching my kids about Shakespeare!

We’ve got so much going in our favour… piano lessons, violin… french lessons… this farm… I’m just going to point us back in the right direction. I want to raise wild, adventurous children who crave knowledge… not dread it.

So… Charlotte Mason. Girlfriend, it’s you and me again.

And to my children… get ready to love school again. Momma is sorry for doubting herself.

Thanks for reading. Amitiés!!! Angela Parisienne Farmgirl.

11 Comments

  1. mandy

    love! sometimes we need a teacher day to remind ourselves what it’s really all about!

    Reply
  2. Lisa Currie-Gurney

    good for you!!

    our kids are all grown up now, (30, 25, 23, & 20), and i miss those “home school” days so very much.

    i felt the same way you did when you held your child.

    i knew the lord was telling me that they would grow up so very fast, and not to give the gift he was giving me called their childhood, away.

    i am so grateful i didn’t.

    it did go by so quickly, and i can’t tell you how much my mothers heart misses that time.

    they are all close to this day.

    so glad you had today to remind you of what your heart is really telling you.

    you go girl!

    hugs from maine

    Reply
  3. sharon L

    Love this!!! In our classical homeschool, we link everything back to God the creator of All things. Psalm 19:1. The heavens declare the glory of God the skies proclaim the work of HIS hands!!! So much to see and do outside. I really feel like that is why so many mommas feel totally defeated and burned out, they are trying to make their homeschool look like “school”.

    Reply
  4. Karen yourchak

    Charlotte mason companion was my favorite read every summer during my home schooling journey! Why do we teach our children ? The Lord told us to teach His commands as we sit at home, when your out together , when you put them to bed, and get them ready for their day (my translation of Deuteronomy 6:6-7). The only way to do this is to spend time with the Lord yourself, then spending time as a couple in prayer, then the family together in all things. When you are getting overwhelmed don’t add textbooks, stop everything and pray, refocus on the direction God has given you! The thing I miss most about home schooling is the new things I learned everyday with my kids!

    Reply
  5. Katie Rose

    awesome! I’ve so been there! The whole time I was reading this I was thinking, oh baby, she needs to hook up with AO and Charlotte Mason! And, what do I see? Charlotte Mason! I love AmblesideOnline and school has never been better since we turned full tilt toward it. I have so been where you are (and my son burned out much earlier than yours)! 1/2 through 2nd grade and he was fed up with textbooks and while looking for “a better way” I certainly found it! We’re ending our Year 1 and loved it. Live it and they’ll never forget, hammer it in and they’ll never want to remember. Go back to your roots!

    Reply
  6. Becca

    I’m with you girl! Serious CM fan! Worth turning around the truck!!!

    Reply
  7. Sarah

    Yes! This. So much. My kids are 6, 4, and 6-months, and after last year of doing homeschool with worksheets coming out of our noses, I managed to make us all hate school. We are getting a late start this year, but we are starting with Charlotte Mason and the Ambleside Online curriculum. I haven’t even read all of her writing, but I resonate so much with what I have read. I want my kids to love learning and make it a way of life, not just something to check off the to-do list. We are moving out of state, from suburbs to sticks, in a couple weeks–I am hoping for the change to have a positive affect on our schooling!

    Reply
  8. Cindy

    I’ve been hopin’ that lightbulb would go on for you ….

    Reply
  9. Teresa

    I am so glad you wrote this post. I was feeling guilty for taking my kids to the apple orchard yesterday instead of doing “school.” I don’t anymore.

    Reply
    • Parisienne Farmgirl

      Teresa, I’m so glad you took your children to the orchard! I had to finally remember that I am not trying to duplicate school… I am not trying to recreate a public or even private school at my dining room table. But suddenly I realized that is what I had begun to do and we were miserable. There will be a whole lifetime of sitting behind a desk for so many children. Why waste a blue sky and ripe apples? They will forever remember the day Momma rescued and took them to the orchard but I doubt they will remember what they read in a text book three weeks ago.

      Reply
  10. Marta

    LOVE Charlotte Mason … and we are blessed with a wonderful Christian Classical School where our Little One is learning to LOVE learning. Congratulations on getting back to your roots! Its what learning is all about.

    Reply

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