Have you ever lost your way in a corn maze? I have, more than once. Thankfully I had helpers with me to point me in the right direction. Getting lost is a scary thought. Finding your way is exhilarating.
My grandson Troy told me about a recent corn maze he visited with his mom and older cousin, Alexis. He said that the kids’ maze was “ridiculously easy” but the big people maze was a bit more challenging. He said he found his way out of that one too. I’m not surprised.
I loved watching his face as he described the ins and outs of corn mazes and his fascination with finding the exit.
Seeing the world through the eyes of a child is an effective antidote to the ills of complacency, ignorance, apathy and boredom. There are added benefits as well that include ample opportunities for laughter, elements of surprise, and a good dose of unconditional love. It also has the potential to shed light on our faulty assumptions about learning and teaching. This corn maze was another one of those learning moments.
I continue to find my old assumptions about teaching and learning challenged as I spend time with any of my grandchildren. Every one of them has been homeschooled for either all or a large portion of their young lives.
It is reported that the number of home schooling families has risen sharply over the last couple of years and is still rising.
It is estimated that over 11% of all school aged children in the United States are now being homeschooled. That is approximately seven to eight million children. While the pandemic spurred this outcome, other factors contribute to the rise. Whatever the reason, homeschooling experienced an historic surge and appears to be alive and well in the midst of a return to the classrooms around the country.
My years of being both a teacher and an administrator has provided me with a traditional perspective on teaching and learning. Observing, participating and assisting in the homeschooling of several grandchildren has given me a unique and different perspective. Watching my grandson close up for the past four years has catapulted me into a totally different and exciting realm.
I know that not everyone can or wants to homeschool. I realize that time, finances, temperament and resources may influence the decision to homeschool. With that being said, I still believe that it provides an incredible advantage on multiple levels. Therefore, I will continue to support, encourage and congratulate those who choose homeschooling as an avenue for learning.
Homeschooling is not an easy choice, but may be a bit easier than a “big people” corn maze.
Next time, I will feature an example of my daughter Amy’s homeschooling journey and a link to her incredible field trip resource guide.