On those tough homeschooling days, Erin suggests playing the “Glad Game” to focus on the many reasons you’re glad to be homeschooling.
There is a culmination of experiences that make me glad to be homeschooling my children. And while I know it’s not the best for everyone, I can’t help but love the way that homeschooling allows me to be there for all my children’s firsts while also learning alongside them every day.
But sometimes I get stuck in the trenches of parenthood and homeschool. I find myself hiding in the bathroom with my stash of chocolate.
Math gets hard. Handwriting gets frustrating. Parenting gets exhausting.
That’s when I could really use a dose of Pollyanna and her glad game.
Pollyanna and the Glad Game
Last weekend our family was a part of the ballet production, Pollyanna. What began as auditions five months ago became a beautiful and moving performance on stage at the local university.
My children were wayward orphans.
I helped corral some of the younger ballet students backstage (which I akin to herding feral cats).
One of the things I love about our local ballet theater is how they always promote a positive message from every ballet they produce. This year it was “The Glad Game.”
In Pollyanna, the glad game was all about finding something to be happy about in every situation. Pollyanna helps the entire town find happiness with her upbeat and positive attitude.
The five months we worked on this ballet truly helped to change my mindset. Some days we may grumble about math facts and history lessons other days we can choose to play the glad game!
Why I’m Glad to be Homeschooling
Homeschooling doesn’t mean that there aren’t hard days. Even on those days, I’m happy with the plethora of learning opportunities and the connections that homeschooling provides.
So here is my version of the glad game and why I’m glad to be homeschooling.
My children don’t have to worry as much about growing up too fast, fitting in, or peer pressure. We are building strong family bonds as well as connections with friends and the community.
The children learned their letters and numbers while riding their tricycles. They memorized math facts while jumping on the trampoline. They learned the Fibonacci sequence with gummy bears and chopped fruit. We celebrated Pi day with real pie!
Climbing trees or hanging upside down makes read-alouds more fun. And a picnic makes poetry teatime perfection.
I’m glad that I don’t have to teach to a test.
I’m glad that my children weren’t considered “behind” because they weren’t reading in first grade. Instead, they got to practice their reading when we volunteered at the animal shelter. There they read to animals that needed human interaction.
I’m glad that my kiddos have the opportunity to dive deep into subjects that interest them, such as ballet, WWII, India, dinosaurs, or horses.
We’ve explored caves, caverns, creeks, dairy farms, mountain tops, and zoos. We’ve hatched baby chicks and watched as our baby goats entered the world. The children have taken apart coffee makers, radios, and air conditioners just to see how they work.
History is more fun when you get to be a part of it. The children have panned for gold when learning about the Gold Rush. They even created their own punch tin lanterns, like Paul Revere would have used, instead of just reading about it. And, baking is often geography, history, and math in disguise!
When I look back at our homeschool, there are so many reasons to be glad!
Glad to be Homeschooling
If you haven’t read Pollyanna, then I encourage you to add it to your reading list. You could also watch the Halley Mills movie version or even this television version. We listened to this audio version over lunch every day during the fall.
Homeschooling has its challenges, and not every day is easy. However, in every moment of our homeschooling journey, there is something to be happy about. We don’t need perfection, but a sense of gladness helps us as we balance this homeschool life with its many moving parts.
Remember all of the reasons you homeschool and be glad.
Why are you glad to be homeschooling?