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Learning through life

OK, I know that I haven’t made a convincing enough argument. All of you, my friends, who actually feel that I’m harming my child by homeschooling her, you are just holding your tongues so that we can maintain our friendship.

You think that by bringing up little criticisms, little questions, every day, you might make me see the irreparable harm I am causing to my child.

But now, I have finally happened upon the argument that will convince you, once and for all, that what I am doing is Just Fine. My daughter will not be irreparably harmed, and we can go back to talking about the last episode of Survivor rather than educational issues, which, I realize, bore you, though they fascinate me. That, however, is a different issue altogether.

The issue is homeschooling. Yes, it is true that I homeschool my daughter. And today I am going to present you with the argument that will finally silence all of your objections. And it will only take four words:

My daughter’s babies surf.

Surf babies

What? You’re not convinced yet? I’m going to have to explain things? OK, for you, I will do so. It’s a pity you weren’t homeschooled, because, you know, homeschooling can lead children to the ability to read minds. Well, maybe not so much. But they can be real smart.

Back to the surfing. Here is my proof:

You see, my daughter’s babies are surfing. Each one is surfing on a specially designed surfboard to fit her body shape, weight, and abilities. Simcha, you know, is an expert surfer. Cowbaby, well, we all know about Cowbaby.

What, you might ask, does this have to do with homeschooling? Well, I tell you, this is a perfect example of what I’ve been trying to explain to you all along! Homeschooling is not about standards; it’s not about worksheets or homework. It’s about learning through life. And here is homeschooling in a nutshell. Or at least in a boogie board.

Here you see three babies. Each one has a surfboard uniquely designed for his or her own body shape and weight.

Math! It is true that my daughter produced no worksheets to prove this, but I dare to submit that in order to design these surfboards, she had to use advanced mathematical skills. Addition: weight + height. Multiplication: wave height x gravity. Not to mention algebra: if baby A weighs 1 pound and baby B weighs 8 ounces, and weight times board length equals stability, which baby is more stable?

Physics! Well, just read the math paragraph above. What else do you need?

Social studies: Where should I start. First of all, notice that not all my daughter’s babies are caucasian. If she had been at school, wouldn’t she have learned that only pale-skinned people surf? A fallacy, we all know. But in homeschool, she is free to believe that we are all free to be you and me. In fact, we start every homeschool day by watching Free to be you and me.

History: Did you know that people didn’t always surf? My daughter does! She knows that yesterday, her babies didn’t surf, but today, they do. See? Everyday life just leads us to history, and a grasp of the infinite truth.

Language arts: It’s true that my daughter’s penmanship is atrocious. We’ve talked about it, and she’s thrown many a pencil at me to prove her points. You see, when she throws the pencil, she’s actually creating an essay in her head about why she shouldn’t have to practice penmanship. And in so doing, she’s actually doing Language Arts. She may not be writing it down, but I feel certain that if she were required to do so by Star Testing, she would be able to. It’s also pretty certain that she knows the difference between its and it’s, but since most teachers don’t, it’s good that she’s in homeschool so that she wouldn’t get too frustrated.

Socialization: Oh, here’s the big bugaboo, the great argument against homeschooling. How is my daughter going to become socialized if she doesn’t go to school every day with children the same age and follow the orders of one adult? How will she learn to work in a workplace with people of all different ages and people who can’t just tell her what to do and who never listen to her ideas?

Well, let’s just go back to those surfing babies. First of all, she doesn’t need to be a student with them: she’s their teacher. All babies can enroll in her surfing school at the age of 6 months, and she will be their teacher. She tells them what to do and doesn’t let them have original ideas. So she’s really past that school thing, right? She’s just gone straight to being a teacher! And isn’t that what everyone says about kids that are ahead of their class? They shouldn’t get to do work at their own level: they should be required to help the other kids and that will be all the learning they need. Why let them go ahead when they can stay behind with the six-month-olds, right?

So as far as socialization goes, I have proven to you, through my daughter’s surfing babies, that she can get along with people of different skin colors, that she can function well in a group of people of different ages, as she will have to do in the rest of her life, and that she is already so socially advanced that she is an actual surfing teacher at the age of six. I’m sure there’s nothing left for you to say here.

OK, now I need you to admit it once and for all: you’re OK with this homeschooling thing, right? Now you’re totally convinced that my daughter is learning, that she is blossoming under my tutelage. I realize that I don’t have a degree in teaching, but heck, I’ve been around this long, I might as well have a degree in life, right? And isn’t that what homeschool is all about? Learning through life.

I think I’m preparing my daughter pretty well. What do you think?

Oh, and by the way, let me know if you know of anyone who wants surfing lessons: I know a great teacher!

Posted in Culture, Homeschooling.

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