Friday, May 30, 2008

Becoming the Student

In our slow shift back to unschooling I've been trying to find ways to deal with the curriculum Catherine likes. The two big ones are Winston Grammar and the Key to books. The problem with those is, as usual, me. I'm having a hard time helping her navigate the stuff without becoming a teacher.

One thing that seems to be working is that I've become the student.

When Catherine sits down with her Key to Algebra I sit down with her. She has her workbook, I have looseleaf. She does the questions and I do the questions. Considering the Key to series is meant to be self-directed, it only seemed to make sense to assume the same role as Catherine.

It's made quite a difference in how I see the work she does and also in how we interact. Instead of her calling when something isn't making sense and me fumbling around trying to sort it out, I'm there from the get go working through it with her. We compare answers, tease each other over dumb mistakes, share our insights and have a lot of of relaxed fun.

I haven't tried this with Winston Grammar but I'm thinking it might work well there as well. We've been on break from it for awhile, stopping after we finished adverbs. Since adverbs are pretty much where my knowledge of the parts of speech stops I think I'm going to learn quite a bit. It's happening with Key to Algebra. We're simply doing operations with negative integers, very familiar stuff for me, but I'm still finding new ways to look at it through the text and through Catherine. And heck, I can't wait until we get to the stuff that will offer more of a challenge.

1 comment:

Jacqueline said...

Sounds like a great plan, Dawn.