Confessions of a (sometimes) wannabee homeschooling mom…

In my previous life, I was a teacher.  That is, I stood in front of 30 pairs of eager eyes that shone with the desire to learn, and imparted my vast amounts of English literary/grammatical wisdom upon their motivated teenage brains (somewhat a biased version of my past, perhaps…).  I have a somewhat ridiculous love of education – and I don’t mean the sitting-in-class-listening-to-someone-lecture-you-while-you-feign-interest kind of education, but the life-is-learning-let-me-help-you-explore kind of education.  That’s why I still love tutoring so much, maybe.

With that in mind, I suppose it wasn’t too much of a shock when I went from completely denying I’d ever homeschool (Bob’s always asked why I was so against it and actually was shocked when I changed my mind) to saying I’d definitely consider it.  And then became profoundly enthused by it and started gobbling up the homeschooling literature (this tends to be my pattern: totally against something, re-read and hear about it, and jump trains loudly and enthusiastically).  But that’s a story for another day.

So today I baby-sat another little girl, age 19 months, which by the way makes for a very full and entertaining and hair-raising day when combined with a 15-month-old and a three-year-old.  We headed toward a school playground near our house in the morning.  As the older two girls scampered through the open field under wide blue skies toward the very-busy playground, the bell rang, and all the primary school kids ran hollering to the doors where they lined up for class.  And I was reminded how much I love love school (geek).  Especially in fall!  I love the excitement of backpacks and class lists and school supplies.  I love watching children walk in small clusters to school, hearing their lively voices, thrilling them with the excitement of what’s to come that year (in elementary school it is thrilling).  I love the buzz of classrooms as kids work on projects, laugh together, get something at last.  I love leaving the school on warmly golden autumn afternoons.  Can I steal that from my kids?  (I know the lists of positives about homeschooling – again, another day – but this does seem like a big loss for them).

Anyway, the schoolyard emptied and my three little ones and I romped over the bridges and slid screaming down the twisty slide until the preschool kids from the community school toddled out, holding onto a long blue rope.  It would have been Sara’s preschool class, actually, but we took her out in favour of dance class (plus we go to Bible Study Fellowship once a week, and the kids’ program is very much like preschool but with a God-focus, imagine that).  And again my heart had a twinge of ahhh longing, as I watched the cute 3-year-olds climbing on the play structure with all their little friends, hanging onto their teacher’s hand, and heard the teacher explain that next was circle time and then was snack time.  Oh, the joys.

And then, wonder of wonders (and kind of annoying wonder at that), I got the phone call.  The one I looked for all last winter while I was trying to figure out what I wanted to do this fall.  That’s right – I was offered a teaching job-share position at my old school.  With a friend, whose teaching I greatly admire and appreciate.  A gem of a job-share (if the teaching assignment is good).  (Let’s be honest, most job-shares are incredible opportunities to work part-time, no weekends, good benefits and salary, and summers/holidays off.  Teaching is awesome that way).

Oh, man.  Oh, it hurts.  Can I say I really want to do it?  And can I say I still really want to be at home with my kidlets and, in the future, homeschool?

Good thing this is months before I have to make any decision, because seriously, I have no idea at this moment what to do.

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