silver imac on white table

How much time is enough?

How much time does it take to learn to read? How much time does it take to learn numbers? How much time does it take to feel acceptance? How much time does it take to feel love? How much time does it take to have understanding? We can go on and on about this, and it seems very complex but in reality, it’s actually very simple. The amount of time it takes to learn to read, to use numbers, to understand concepts is different for everyone; BUT everyone can feel acceptance, love or understanding in a matter of seconds. That doesn’t take much time. We can FEEL that. We don’t have to learn it in our brain, it’s automatic in our very being.  Our very soul can feel it.  What we fail recognize, is that in seconds we set-up the time we allotted for ‘education’ as a good, loving, understanding time or we don’t.  The second issue is that time is not an issue with learning to read; except when other people are waiting for us to learn it.  Other people that already know what you are learning can become frustrated, short tempered, annoyed or the opposite and careless in your plight to learn whatever it is they are trying to teach you.  So, the question is, what kind of time do you want to spend with your child?  It all depends on your value of time.  Do you value quality or quantity?

Quantity of time is how the government schools calculate that their students are learning.  School learning is done by the hour, actually it’s down to the minute.  There are so many minutes each day for the subjects the school deems necessary for your student to learn.  So many minutes are allotted for outside activities, food, drink and bathroom breaks.  Then the student is sent home with the understanding that he/she has learned for the day.  But has he?  Has he really learned what was ‘taught.’  And if he didn’t, was that the teacher’s fault, his, another student?  That’s not really the point. The point is, do people learn by the minute or by experience?  It’s back to that quantity versus quality again.  Let’s take another example, when a person who works a trade is hired for a job, do they get paid by the hour or by the job?  And if they get paid by the hour, how long do you think they will allow the job to go?  If they get paid by the job, how long do you think he will take?  What type of service will you get if they get paid by the hour versus the job?  I tend to like to hire people that work by the job.  This way I know they will do their best effort in a timely fashion and I will only be charged for the job itself.  Traditional school is like hiring them to educate your child by the hour.  It doesn’t really matter how long it takes, just as long as it takes place between the hours of 8am-3pm.  It also doesn’t really matter if they learn.  They are just there to be counted in attendance, the school gets their government money, and it’s all good.

Homeschooling, on the other hand, is hiring someone by the job.  Time is not really an issue, it only becomes an issue when we think quantity equals quality.  Our society has been ‘educated’ that school happens for six hours a day, five days a week and anything less than that isn’t good enough.  But that’s not life nor learning.  People, especially children, are learning at all times.  And in some areas, they learn really fast and other areas they don’t.  That is a special characteristic predetermined for each human.  This is what boggles the minds of new homeschoolers…the time.  They expect their child to study school at home for the same amount of time that their child was in school, and if that doesn’t happen, they don’t feel fit to homeschool their child.  DON’T DO THAT!  Your child doesn’t learn by the clock, and neither do you.  This is a working by the job task, not the hour.  If your child understands a lesson in 5 minutes when the book said it should take 20…. it takes 5 for him.  You got it!  Move on.  Take  a break or do another lesson.  Don’t allow the clock to dictate his ability to learn.