Y’all it time for us to stop doing things the way we have always done them just for the sake of doing them the way they have always been done. I’ve been standing up on this soap box for a while now on all the social media platforms. I’ve done Instagram reels about change. I’ve gone LIVE and talked about how we pitched a perfectly good curriculum to do Madlibs for a semester. I’ve done story after story about allowing yourself freedom.
What have I learned? People are more afraid than ever to make a change. Comments and DMs keep coming in saying things like “Wow! I wish I could change but I just can’t” and “That sounds great but I could never do it.” Fear is holding on tight. Any sense of normal we can grab ahold of we are. Which I totally get because 2020 has been one big change – is anything “normal” anymore? But because we won’t let go, take a risk, take a chance, we’re stuck in a rut. We’re stuck in routine. We’re stuck in tradition. And many of us aren’t thrilled about it.
I’m finished sitting there. I’m finished being “normal.” If there is one thing I was never accused of when I taught in public school, it was being normal. I was that odd teacher everyone was terrified for their children to get but then once their child was in my room for a couple of months they were thrilled. But despite all of this, somehow when I brought my own boys home for school I let tradition and normal become our reality. I’m sure it is because it is easier to do tradition than to break the mold. It also probably had something to do with the fact that at the time I “needed” a fully laid out curriculum that told me what to teach on each day and I wouldn’t deviate from it – by nature I’m a rule follower. But I’m finished. I’m finished checking the boxes and losing out on what could be. I’m ready to reimagine what school can look like. I’m ready to see what kind of crazy we can embark on. I’m ready to bring back the spontaneous learning that lights up our eyes and fills our days.
Am I going to pitch all our curriculum? No. Am I going to toss out all of our hard established rhythms? Probably not. Do I know exactly what it is going to look like? Not a clue. Does all of the uncertainty terrify me as a type A planner? Definitely, but I’m not going to let it hold me back. My boys deserve better. I deserve lighter, smarter, simpler.
We are going to reimagine school. Together we are going to sit down and talk about what we want school to look like moving forward. We’re going to throw out all the ideas no matter how ridiculous they may seem at the moment. We’re going to dream big. We’re going to see where our brains take us.
We may not be able to do all the things but I also bet there are things that the boys come up with that I would never have considered. I bet ideas thrown out that seem crazy can be tweaked and adjusted. I bet things are said that spark other ideas that are bigger, better and more aligned with where we want to be. It’s time to do this. It’s time to reimagine our homeschool.
Maybe you’re ready to go all in with us. Or – more likely – you’re beginning to think there is one area of your school days that you can reimagine. Let’s dream together. Let’s not be afraid to make a change. Let’s not be afraid to re-think normal. Instead, let’s be smart, let’s be simple.