I’ve been hibernating for quite some time away from this blog. There’s been some personal reasons I’ve been away – some health reasons, some spiritual, some work related (no, I’m not working, but I wish to return to the workforce or go back to school) and some directly due to the focus of the blog itself.
For some reason, this blog started feeling very constraining to me, and I didn’t realize why until recently. I think, I’ve stopped doing what I want to do, and started doing what I thought OTHER people wanted me to do. My blog has been featured on some teacher websites, and MOST of the readers of this blog are parents and teachers of preschoolers.
The major problem I have with this (which really isn’t a problem for me), is that my kids are growing up. I have an 8 year old, a 6.5 year old and an almost 5 year old. My youngest just took her kindergarten screening test on the 11th – which she passed with FLYING colors. She properly identified ALL her uppercase and lowercase letters. About a year ago, she had NO interest in learning letters, the only one of my 3 daughters who didn’t know her letters by 3 years old. Between my efforts and the preschool class she took, something must have clicked for her.
So now, I realize that some of my work is done and now it’s time for some changes. I realize that some of the focus has been limited by the fact that I’ve been feeling guilty about moving on to doing some things for older kids. I might need to change things around for this blog to accommodate our changing needs. I kind of felt like I might lose readers, but after about a 3 month absence, I just checked my blog stats and realized that the stats are over 100,000, so, while I may lose some, I might not notice much.
Total views: 100,303
Views today: 144
I realize that whether or not I actually post, people are still finding something useful here, and for that I feel really good. But, one thing I know is that I miss hanging out here. It’s where I started blogging, it’s where I began formulating my thoughts on what kind of childhood I wanted for my kids, and what I wanted to teach them myself, before they ever stepped one foot in school. I stopped coming here because I felt restricted. I was not using this blog anymore for my purposes – to further refine my goals for my children and my views on education and simply show some of the neat projects we were doing.
I’m not a homeschooler, nor are my kids solely public-schooled. I provide for them opportunities to learn outside of school hours. What I’ve been hung up on is having to use or blog about structured activities. My own personal feeling is that learning happens all the time, not just between the bells or at a table and chair.
I recently decided to bring two of my daughters to any doctor’s appointments and even blood draws that I can, because there’s LOTS of neat instruments and charts on the walls to talk about – and, at a recent visit, my 6 year old was asking me about poster of the clogged arteries of the heart she was reading at the doctors office, and particularly the ones at my old university hospital. On a recent trip, in February, I was able to bring them to see the beautiful architecture of the campus as well as provide them with an unexpected learning experience in building construction:
That’s Rockerfeller Chapel and that’s my 6 year old daughter climbing up a small hill. We didn’t have time to go inside, but next time we go, I plan to take extra time to go inside some of the buildings.
So, with this in mind, I have NO idea what will happen to the focus of this blog. I realize that at the moment, it’s irrelevant. I’m feeling like I need to spend more time here like I used to, and try to write out what I’m thinking and evaluate it as I go along. I can’t say right up front what plans I have in mind for this blog or for the kids, though I have some general things in mind – more field trips and perhaps some more games, maybe some art and maybe some math and anything science that comes up with be on The Exploration Station blog…but specifically what I don’t know. I will have to let things evolve naturally and see where this takes us.
Amazingly enough, just as I posted this post, the doorbell rang and a book I’ve been wanting just got delivered – Creative Homeschooling for Smart Families, by Lisa Rivero -how coincidental is that???. I’m so excited!