Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Planting a Yearning for Learning

I am a homeschooler. I have been for 14 years now. I homeschool for a number of reasons, but one of them is a love of learning. I love to learn, and when I try to figure the origin of that love, I believe it was my elementary school teachers. Now, Christine is way past elementary school, but I hope I did a good job of instilling the love of learning in her during those impressionable years. I know that as I approached high school my love for learning was waylaid by a love of hockey and a love of telephone conversation -- peers are very influential sources of diversion. I hope that by homeschooling, I can cut down on some of that diversion, maybe intensify and reduce her school day so interaction with her peers remains extracurricular and does not interfere with the learning process. I continue to be enthusiastic about learning -- devouring good books, watching educational programming, visiting historic and scientific locations -- in the hopes that my passion for educational will be contagious. Scott and I do the same thing with our younger children in a less formal manner. Free time is not always mindless entertainment or DIY experiences. Sometimes we play educational games, or games that rely on developing strategy and critical thinking skills. Sometimes we, as a family, visit museums, planetariums, or historic sites. No matter what we are doing, we try to make it fun and attractive, conveying the message that learning can be exciting.

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