By Jenny Meyer, Woodbridge
Originally published in the March-April 2015 VaHomeschoolers Voice
A long, long time ago—okay, seven years ago— I wrote a short essay for this publication titled, “Connect the Dots.” You can look it up on the VaHomeschoolers website if you’re interested, but I’ll give you my rousing conclusion here:
“The most important thing we need as homeschoolers isn’t a brilliant plan. It’s the courage to press on, even when you can’t see how the dots are going to connect. So don’t worry if your plans don’t stick. Keep throwing stuff at the wall. It will look good in hindsight.”
Guess what? It’s still true!
Some of my friends told me that their co-op had recently held a panel discussion by homeschool graduates. Apparently it was a great panel (I wasn’t there), but some of the audience members later questioned whether the organizers had cherry-picked only highly successful kids.
I don’t think so. I think these kids just had the wisdom of hindsight. They could look back on the story of their homeschooling careers and, knowing how the journey ended, could connect the dots.
I don’t have a homeschooling graduate quite yet, but my older daughter will be going to college this year. She’s already been accepted at two schools she likes, and these schools seem to like her, too: one has invited her into its honors college, and the other has offered her a substantial merit scholarship. By traditional measures of academic success, she looks good.
Seven years ago, could I have predicted this? Hardly. Back then, she spent most of her time outdoors, catching insects for pets, and playing elaborate fantasy games with her sister and her friends. Her formal academic experience was limited to one Chinese class, but that didn’t seem to be working out very well. Her handwriting was tortured and illegible. Math caused tears and was completely off the table for years.
But she was a happy child. In hindsight, those bug pets led to a lifelong interest in biology, and those happy hours outside led to an interest in environmental science. The elaborate fantasy games turned into novel writing. She’s now taking college Chinese classes at the upper-intermediate level. Her handwriting improved when she wanted it to. And she just made it through a community college math class without, as far as I know, shedding a single tear. In other words, eventually, the dots connected! So, press on. I’ll bet, someday, your dots will connect too.
About the Author
Jenny Meyer homeschools two daughters in Woodbridge.
Originally published in the March-April 2015 VaHomeschoolers Voice.
VaHomeschoolers Voice Publication Information
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