... did you ever have a child who *wanted* to do things like pre-reading worksheets? And if so, did you just let that be while it lasted?
That's a great question, and the answer is, "Yes. Ramona has loved herself some very worksheet-y worksheets."
Ramona loves a lot of curriculum, actually, although the more obligatory it becomes, the less attractive it is to her, and she has yet to fall in love with the math curriculum that I require of her. But she likes the accountability and neatness of filling in blanks, matching answers, and choosing one of multiple choices. She likes lists (so do I) and checking things off as she accomplished tasks (so do I.) So, curriculum appeals to the desire for order and structure.
This post -- School-y Ramona -- is from the year Ramona was seven years old. The main point was that my homeschooling goal has been to follow my girls' lead and pinpoint how they learn best. If Ramona wanted to do State of the Day, we were going to do State of the Day (while still mixing in lots of real life and hands on learning, read-alouds, and so on.)
I'm reminded of a comment on a past post in which Elizabeth said this:
On a sadder note, I am envious of your party planning and graduation parties. My son has just finished his final high school work -- we have home schooled since the beginning. He has taken 8 classes at the community college & has been accepted to GA Tech (his 1st and only choice) but the child doesn't want a graduation party. He wants no celebration -- nothing. i'm just left hanging here. I did get one of those corny yard signs that all the other kids from the local public & private schools get, announcing congratulations, etc. He won't have anything to do with a party. but I feel like celebrating -- I've spent the last 18 years of my life nurturing and educating this kid. It seems wrong not to celebrate.
My response was this:
...what's funny about our opposite situations is that I always pictured myself being more like your son -- I thought that the beauty of homeschooling was that we didn't have to do the requisite milestones/celebrations in the same way the rest of the world does, because we've always done things on our own timeline. But, my girls wanted more, so that's what they got. And, your son doesn't want a party, so that's what he's getting. We're both still tailoring things to their likes and needs. :)
However, it does sound like your son should perhaps take your likes and needs into account, and take YOU out for a celebration dinner!
That little exchange sums up what I love about homeschooling: an individualized, tailored, responsive way of life that is centered on relationships and real goals for the real world.
And sometimes that means worksheets, for as long as they serve their purpose. (Hope this helps, Tamara!)