Last Friday, we ate dinner in a Filipino restaurant with two Japanese guests. They were heading a group of high school students who were in the country for a two-week English camp. They tied up with the university my husband works in. As with usual conversations when kids are around, Mr Koda asked my son, “What grade are you in?” And my son cautiously yet matter-of-factly said, “Grade 5-ish…mostly.” So my husband explained: “Different levels…in English, advanced; in Math, same level; in Filipino…Grade 2.” And we laughed, because of the irony of how a Filipino kid wasn’t adept at Filipino just yet (though I know many of us homeschoolers are in the same boat when it comes to Filipino, am I right?)
Prior to the “What grade are you in?” question was the usual precedent: “Where does he go to school?” And of course I answered that we homeschool. Then Mr Koda said, “Ah…when you home educate, you also learn.” “Yes!” I beamed.
There were exchanges of stories about Filipino and Japanese culture throughout our meal. Then I also mentioned how my son learned to write some Japanese characters sometime ago. So Mr Koda started writing Japanese characters on the paper placemat, and asked us to guess what they meant. It was a fun discussion, and my son gamely chimed in. 🙂
Thinking about it now, here are some takeaways:
- It’s OK if your kid is in “Grade __-ish.” Many homeschoolers can relate to this. Ways of learning differ, interests in certain subjects differ, some lessons and concepts are understood faster than others. That’s OK. Because the key is learning. So if something isn’t quite understood yet, it’s OK to take longer. And if something is already understood, then no need to linger.
- In homeschooling, it’s not only the kid who learns, but the parents as well. Oh yes…and I’ll add that many times, we learn together. Because obviously I don’t know all the answers. So when a question is posed, and I have no idea, I’ll say something like, “Hmm…I don’t know…let’s research….”
- Learning happens all the time. It’s always an enriching experience when you meet someone from a different place. And that knowledge widens your view of the world.
I encourage you to notice the many “homeschool moments” you have in your family; you may just be surprised!
Have you had a homeschool moment that was a fun experience? Share in the comments. Would love to hear your story!
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