When your educational philosophy boxes your mommy, day-to-day survival.

I saw a video from Jolanthe at Homeschool Creations about this book.  Hmm.  Motivation.  On the whole not a big issue in our homeschool, other than motivating Mommy ;), but I decided that this was interesting after reading the sample.  WOW!  What a great, engaging book.

So, here’s the problem.  I went to NYU.  I studied Alfie Kohn.  I’ve read everything he’s written, watched all of his speeches, and I’ve even heard him speak and met him.  I wrote one of my M.Ed. papers on his idea that learning that is unhampered with “anxiety, rewards, and consequences” is innate in every child.  EVERY CHILD.  The following book I read after LB was born.

Nope.  No lollipops to read.  No charts to reward behaviors she innately wanted to accomplish.  Flash forward.  Lollipop in the mouth.  Charts on the wall.  Not for learning or reading books in the summer, but for good behavior… like not screaming her head-off in the car and grocery store and making my milk come down for DD.  Yep, Kohn has two books about that.

 So I’ve ruined them, correct?  All of my loving intentions, and sometimes sanity-saving intentions and actions, have stolen their natural drive to be empathetic and learn?  This is where the two sides of “mommy’ing” and homeschooling begin to battle it out like prize fighters.  Who will win?  Should I bet?

After much prayer and reflection, I’ve decided that both sides win.  It’s a draw.  Sorry.  There are times when an extrinsic motivator works with my kids.  There are times when I feel GOOD GIVING IT TO THEM.  There are times, and these seem lately to far outweigh the former, when they just love to learn and take off on their own to follow their schedule for the day.  I guess they know that it inevitably leads to side trips in our house.  We usually finish and head outside to scratch rocks and minerals or see if cut hair keeps deer away.  It might be an evening playing games about the human body, or it might be making a recipe from South America.  And some nights, and these are secretly my favorite, it’s the kids knitting while I read Bible stories and from a classic or two.  Now we are reading, the following… and loving every minute.  I love it when they beg for another chapter… and not for a lollipop!

We get great lists from TJEd.Com!


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