ending our year on a high note
The last week of school for the year is upon us- how did this happen? Surely it was just last month that we began and now I am filing things away, clearing out curriculum and preparing for our end of year presentations.
At the end of each school year, we put together a small presentation for the family. Each child worked on a historical biography paper for this night and they will get to show off some neat things they learned this year. For the older kids is was memorizing all of the state capitals, being able to draw the United States freehand, and having memorized well over 50 vocabulary word definitions. They will also share some things in math that they felt especially accomplished about.
For my younger one, he made a poster of his alphabet and samples of the work he’s done this year. He’s going to talk about his favorite books and his favorite thing he learned all year (Kindergarten). Now, this is not all that they have learned all year, just the things that they feel most proud of and most excited about!
I love this because Dad gets to see that they actually learn. Totally kidding. But because he is not here daily through the ins and outs with them, it’s always fun when he gets to see what they have done and how they take pride in their work.
As I was going through some papers today, namely lessons that just will not get done this year, guilt crept in. A big part of me got nervous and wanted to extend our school year so that we can finish the things we didn’t get to. Are we really at the very end of every book? No. Did we really get to every activity, lesson, worksheet, and craft? No. Are there things I had planned and hoped for that didn’t happen? Many. Is my kindergartener reading? Not yet. Does my fourth grader have every times table memorized yet? No.
I had to step back and look at what we have done, this has been one of our best homeschool years to date. I can look through an entire beautiful basket of work that was accomplished this year, I can look at our piles of books that have been read, I can remember all of the priceless day trips and adventures we were able to take together and all of the hours logged outside and be thankful. Because education for us isn’t about making sure we complete every lesson in the book. It’s about building faith, character, and relationship. It is about spending more time outside than in, and more time exploring and being a kid than logging working hours and worksheets. And, none of my children have ever read in Kindergarten. It’s been first grade for the six that came before and it will be first for him as well, and I’m ok with that. Afterall, our end goal isn’t to raise college-educated children. Our end goal is to raise children who know and serve the Lord. If we do that, the rest will follow.
Here is to a summer of reading, laughing, resting, and connecting. What about you? How are you ending your school year? Happy and excited? Bittersweet? Are you ready to let go of another year?