Thursday, September 08, 2005

Desperately Bleak Day

One of the worst I can remember in this last year. And we'd started this "term" so well, too. I was going to blog a sanitised, prettified, keeping up appearances version, but then I figured that it helps me to read other blogs sometimes when people have had a bad day - to realise that we're not alone in it not always being tiptoeing through the daisies and lots of jolly fun. So in case anyone else out there has had a pig of a day - so have we.

Major meltdown over maths, again, with Emily claiming that she couldn't do stuff she'd been doing without thinking a few months ago, refusing to try and generally throwing a wobbly about maths being too boring, too hard, too easy or a combination of all the above. Feel like I've totally failed in that department - all the progress I thought we'd made this last year seems to have gone down the drain. Incredibly depressing. I don't care how good or not she is or ever will be at maths, but I do care that she tries - and when she doesn't, she and I fight. Majorly.

School has been mentioned, and even seriously considered. I can totally see the point of being semi-autonomous in "interest" subjects like art, history, animals, whatever, but I don't do autonomous when it comes to core skills. I may be totally failing to grasp how autonomous education works, but I don't understand how a child becomes competent in maths without learning the basics, and without practice. So the option of "not doing maths" doesn't exist as far as I'm concerned. So we have to find a way. Today we've failed to find a way that hasn't ended in tantrums and tears all round.

I used to believe that even a bad day home educating was better than a bad day at school. Today, I think I've realised that's not true. After a bad day at school, at least it feels as if you and your child are on the same side, and you can feel righteous anger at "them" for getting things wrong. After a bad day at home, there's nobody to take the blame for things going wrong except the home educating parents. I'm the one that's been shouting all day. I'm the one that has battled with an oppositional child all day. I'm the one that has had all the wrong buttons pushed and failed to come up with a strategy for averting that. I'm the one that has (must have, somehow) handled everything all wrong. There's no passing the buck here. And that really hurts.


Kris said...

(((hugs))) Nothing worse than being big bad mommy, espeically after bed time and you sit there berating yourself wondering what's going throught their heads as they're going to sleep. But there's a big difference between you yelling at her to do something and a teacher yelling - you're doing it because you care and she's yours and you want the best - not because you have to reach a certain target or get a certain level of exam results to maintain your standing in the school (a direct quote). And sometimes I could scream and the idea of sending them all to boarding school comes to mind.

Then you have a fabulous day and know why you go through it all. :)

Nikki said...

Thanks, Kris. We've had a much more positive day today, so things are looking rosier!