There are countless ways a homeschooling parent can feel inadequate. The feeling of incompetence can be quite uncomfortable. This has been one of those uncomfortable weeks.
For our language study, we are reading Longfellow's poem, Paul Revere's Ride. Being Malaysian, Boston Tea Party and Declaration of Independence are subjects completely out of my depth. Also, I know so very little about horses.
Things we cherished
I found a ranch that offered riding classes to children. It was only about ten minutes away and I thought, "Why not?" So I called them to arrange a visit, asking simply whether we could come and watch the horses.
When we arrived, Ellen, a 14-year-old young lady, was receiving her riding lesson. The boys and I were awestruck by the sheer power and height of these creatures. Ellen's mom, Kate, offered to take us on a tour around the ranch while she waited for her daughter to be done with her lesson. I told her she was a homeschool mom's dream come true.
Kate was patient with the boys, understanding their initial fears. She took us to the stables and showed us all the nooks and crannies that might amuse us. She taught us about all the gears Ellen needed to ride a horse. We met Elva, the farrier who was trimming and balancing the horses' hoofs. He gave each boy a horseshoe and taught us about horses' hoofs.
Things we pondered
Education really does take a village. I am inadequate to teach, but I am not on my own.
The children are learning—from and because of—the kindness and sacrifices of people, people, and more people. I am moved by the generosity we have received from strangers. The boys (and their mother) have had countless of educators at zoos, botanical gardens, butterfly conservatory, museums, grocery stores, and libraries. And most importantly, we have you — our friends and family. Thank you for reading, drawing, listening, playing, sharing meals, and sitting on the floor with us.
Thank you for teaching us, and learning with us. We are so grateful for you.
|A horse on his treadmill|
|Elva the farrier.|
|What he thought of us humans.|
|What he thought of my camera.|
|The boys making horse faces.|
|Strawberry eating her favorite food.|
|The triceratops got to try on the horseshoe, "so she would not get lost."|