Saturday, 15 February 2014
The weather has been awful here, mainly wet and windy, not as bad as lots of places down south though, I have to say. Thank goodness! There are certain advantages to living high above sea level in the middle of the country and I do seem to remember one clear day that had blue skies for a couple of hours.....
The Girl has been busy this week, she seems to be very heavily leaning towards a performing arts education at the minute. She has had a piano lesson, a singing lesson, a cornet lesson, a dancing lesson, a choir practice, a brass band practice and a drama session this week. In fact, these are all weekly activities often with a violin lesson chucked into the mix too. I'm very pleased that she still has lots of enthusiasm for all these activities as she is fast approaching those dreaded years of can't-be-botheredness. I know that it isn't the same for all teenagers, some don't go through that phase and I'm sincerely hoping that my beautiful daughter doesn't take after me and that she stays very bothered :)
I know some people would look at the long list of activities she does and wonder where she gets her energy from, I know I sometimes do. And on the nights when I feel tired and less than enthusiastic about leaving the warm fire and going out into the cold and dark to take her somewhere yet AGAIN, I have to remind myself why our lives are like this. She doesn't go to school. She is Home Educated and always has been to give her the opportunity and energy to follow her natural inclinations. She is now a teenager and she needs time and space to pursue her own interests, to find her own feet and learn to feed her own passions. I don't want her days consumed in a classroom, coming home too tired to do any of the things she would like to do, all peopled-out, and with no time for 'extras' with homework hanging over her head as the pressure to pass 11 GCSEs builds up. To me, her activities are not 'extras', they are the mainstay of who she is, maths and English are 'extras' - and science, science is definitely an 'extra' - and not a very welcome one as far as she is concerned :/
Looking over my last few blogposts, I'm really aware that they're full of what Boykin does, that I write less and less about The Girl, but I guess that is par for the course. I still have lots of input to her education, but it feels less hands-on and more hands-off. I'm there to help when she asks for it, but gone are the days of singing counting rhymes in the middle of maths, doing Five in a Row and making lapbooks with her about animals. These days, the most directed input I have is when she does the activities I write into the Picture Book Explorers. I'm thankful that she is happy not only to test them out for me, but also to add improvements and suggestions of her own. (This weekend we will be mostly making quill pens and drawing.)
She is full of ambition and luckily seems to have the drive to go with it. Sometimes I feel less like her mother and more like her PA, organising her diary, telling her what appointments she has that day and what she needs to do to prepare for her next activity ;) Even that will fall by the wayside soon enough...
There is a sense of having gone full circle, back to the more autonomous approach I set out with when she was a very little Girl. She still studies maths every morning and keeps to the daily routines which we have had in place for a few years now. Hopefully, this will help her with time management and with the self-discipline she will need to get the exams she wants. She may not feature much in this blog right now, nor in the future, but she is more in control of her education than she ever was and, most importantly, is still enjoying learning.