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Quaker by conviction, mother by default, Celticst through love, Christ follower because I once was lost but now am found...

Monday, March 23, 2009

On not seeing what's in front of your nose.

I have my own little world, but it's okay - they know me here. ~Author Unknown

Things change, imperceptibly...then one day you wake up wondering how you got here. Worse you wake up wondering how you're going to get out! That's what living with Ditz will do for you.

See three years ago I changed Ditz's curriculum. Actually we changed everything. We changed umbrella schools, supervisors & the way we did things & toddled off in a new direction. More reading. Lots & lots more reading & that is a very good thing but it changed something fundamental about the way Ditz & I did school. I wasn't as involved. I thought this was a good thing & Ditz was maturing, {Well, that's what I thought!} able to work on her own, get her work done...yadda, yadda. I think lots of things it's probably better not to think.

It took a while but it slowly dawned on me that Ditz really wasn't all that happy. She complained a lot about her curriculum. It didn't matter what it was she complained. If I even hinted she might like to do stuff on her own she went into meltdown. She mentioned *real* school more & more often. Not even an option given the state of our Public Schools round here. I was puzzled. Really. I was. Ditz's curriculum was carefully chosen just for her, to meet her needs, accommodate her learning style, incorporate the things she likes & thinks important. The child should have been in clover. Seriously. She wasn't in clover. I was scratching my head.

O.K. I'm slow. Real slow. There is one constant about Ditz, stemming all the way back to her time in the womb when everyone would cluster round my *bump* pat it, stroke it & talk to it; Ditz is a people person. Company is the name of the game. Taking her books in to her room to work quietly by herself was never going to make Ditz a happy Ditz. Fundamental.

And there I was wondering why Ditz was so happy to do Dictation & Grammar! Mummy time! Anyway as I was trying to help Ditz untangle her notes on Hitler & pull her essay in to some sort of order it suddenly occurred to me Ditz was working pretty cheerfully. Instead of sending her off to read on her own I sat with her & read aloud. Ditz cheerfully interrupted with all sorts of trivia about the period we were reading about. It occurred to me I wasn't having to drag stuff out of the child, she was offering me information. *sigh* I got a synopsis of her next trilogy. [Yes, she writes books. They are a deep, dark secret & she's so shy about them she only very occasionally reads me a passage that she thinks might pass muster]. Then all unbeknown to Ditz she provided me with an introduction to poetical analysis! I'd been wondering how to broach this with Ditz & the child just handed it to me on a platter! Oh! You want to know what it is?

Well, Ditz usually has one or two songs she's working on getting all the words down pat & the notes right. We get a lot of constant singing & often it's the same passage over & over. Drives my mother nuts. At the moment it's Hoist the Colours from Pirates of the Caribbean. I like this one so am not objecting too much. Ditz does like to show off & every so often she thinks she can take her mother on on her own ground & win so she started asking me what I thought some of the lines meant. Poor Ditz. I mightn't have watched these movies all the way through but I know my mythology. Viola! Poetical analysis 101! It's a start, ok. I love the internet.

I don't think I often do things the way they're meant to be done & back in the bad old days we did very little grammar. It was one reason I really wanted to change curriculum, schools & supervisors. What little we had done Ditz just wasn't getting. What's more I don't do grammar as a separate subject. I simply do the phasing that comes after the dictation. Which meant that Ditz was thrown in at the deep end. Nouns, verbs adverbs, subject, predicate, articles, prepositions, subjects, objects of the preposition ~ Ditz got them all at once. I spent weeks & months walking her through her grammar work, fitting it together like a jigsaw. Every so often I'd ask her what something was not very hopefully & sometimes she'd get it but mostly she wouldn't. Then all of a sudden, just recently, it's clicked for her. She can see the patterns & she's got a better grasp of her grammar than I do.

Homeschool is always a bit bumpy. Interruptions. Life gets in the way ~ but no more than in regular school. I just have to remember Ditz likes company. It makes her world go round. Having her world go round makes Ditz a happy Ditz & a happy Ditz makes my job easier. It is a small price to pay. Besides, Ditz is fun to be with. Mostly.


seekingmyLord said...

That's my Princess too. It seems that it was not math itself that she dislikes so much, as she has been recently asking to do math--Forgive me. Every time I think about that the room spins, things go black, and the next thing I know I am on the floor.

She can do math just fine, she just wants the interaction with people and "people" meaning me, being that I am the only one here. Now that I am giving her extra attention during math lessons, it is going just fine. She will, of course, say she does not like math, but she actually is making up equations on her own time--there's that floor again!

dongdong said...

I share your sentiments. Thanks for sharing! It is only recently by by asking my daughte what she want did I understand. Same thing as SeekingmyLord says of her daughter.

Ganeida said...

Lol. I *like* people but not needing company I forget poor old Ditz is made along completely different lines. People are the air she breathes.

Hey, whatcha doing down there? I thought the floor was my province.

seekingmyLord said...

If you want to break my fall next time...please, be my guest! ;D

I am might understand how you feel. I can *entertain* myself quite well and I liked doing my studies on my own, but that is not the way of Princess. I am hoping that she learns to adapt to doing some things on her own, but her idea of that would probably result in her lining up all her imaginary friends to be her audience.

(I so miss my animated emoticons/smilies, when posting a comment. :( )

Molytail said...

Mmm hmmm. I know all too well what it's like to have a daughter for whom "take this to your room and read it" might as well be "down to the dungeon with you m'dear!" LOL ...Cindy LOVES having me right there, regardless of what she's doing. Then Christopher - well, he requires the 1-1 assitance/direction/etc... Good thing we've gone the KONOS route because trying to run to entirely different programs with two kids who both want 100% of me would mean I'd need to clone myself. Or never sleep. Or both LOL.... we have some seperates now - Math and Language mainly - but the bulk of it is together, just at different levels.

Heh. I'm there with the constant singing as well - there's a song that the choir has been working with, everytime Cindy starts singing it, I think of you! (um, hope that isn't bad LOL) It's called "The Fairies" ...I can't find any performances of it as a song online, just being read as a poem... it's *very* pretty though!

I *tried* to like Pirates of the place I can never spell right so I won't try LOL but ... eh... just didn't...

Homeschoolmum4Christ said...

Hi Ganeida,
Since switching to ACE, my son and daughter finally understand verbs, adjectives, nouns, adjective phrases, adverb phrases, transitive and intransitive verbs, passive and active voice verbs etc. It's as if somebody has switched the lights on, and it's great!

I spend all day with the children, but more as a facilitator rather than a teacher, and I enjoy the time that we spend together. They're growing up far too quickly.

Ganeida said...

Moly, m'dear, so far as Ditz was concerned I had sent her to isolation on Bread & water rations with no imminent sign of release. My idea of heaven but more like hell on earth for Ditz.

Don't like the movies much but I *do* like this piece of music ~ & fairies are always good. ;)

HSmum4Christ: I spend so much time with Ditz I missed the obvious ~ & somehow I think she will always be like this. I was so relieved with the grammar lights went on for Ditz but she's always liked B&W answers. Sometimes I'm the teacher, sometimes the facilitator, & sometimes Ditz surprises me & takes off on her own with something. When she does that she never forgets what she learns.

MamaOlive said...

Don't make me get up and interact with my children. That can't possibly be what they need... Why did God choose a loner to be the poster child of quiverfull? At least I'm in good company. oxymoron again. Well, no one said purification was fun.

Ganeida said...

MamaO, you make me laugh. God really does have a wonderful sense of the ridiculous! Irony seems to be the name of the game.

Mrs. C said...

Ditz needs a twin to get all this stuff done with! :]

Ganeida said...

Funny you should say that, MrsC. That's exactly what Ditz says ~ along with how remiss of me not to have provided said twin seeing as I had already done it once & was perfectly capable of doing it again so why hadn't I? My poor little mind boggles at getting 2 of Ditz!

Persuaded said...


so sorry to shout but here i am wondering why you've been silent (relatively speaking) so i pop on over here to see three posts i've somehow missed... yipes...

anyway, my noah is pretty much the same as ditz. odd for a boy, i suppose. but he'll happily do any schoolwork if i am there with him. he's started asking to do more reading (which he has abhorred until very recently) now that we do it together and trade off chapters. he'd be content to do school all day as long as he's not isolated. even if i'm sitting in the rocker sewing he's a happy camper... funny how just realizing something like that can make all this teaching stuff so much easier, eh?

Ganeida said...

Diane: I was missing your visits girl. Never realised you thought I wasn't *home*. Seems there's a few kiddies out there who will work happily at anything so long as they have company while they do it. It's about this point I look for somewhere to *rest my cross*. *sigh*. This daily dying to self is sooo hard.