Then once in a while I get feedback like this comment which I received today:
I wanted to thank you for your blog. I enjoy your writing style and honesty. I have similar feelings about homeschool forums and local groups and other blogs. Yours really is the only one I read regularly. I’ve been following your family’s learning adventure for about a year and I have changed how I do things with my 9 yr. old boy as a result of reading about where you are with your older boys. It gives me a picture of where I want to be when my son is older. When I feel overwhelmed or insecure I often read some of your older posts and realize I’m not the first to doubt and then find a way to succeed. Thank you again for your open mind and willingness to share….Your easy to read writing inspires across ½ the Pacific.
One clarification: it is not my intention to convince people to do things my way because I am not even sure what I'm doing is "right" let alone "the one right way". Some days I feel like I know nothing or that I'm I realize there are many ways to achieve even the same goals. I support everyone doing individual things that works best for their unique children. With that said, I write of what we do, and if something her inspired or informs, then that's fantastic.
The only areas which I wish people did things my way are in the areas of attachment parenting, not doing "cry it out" sleep training methods with babies, treating kids with respect, gentle discipline meaning: no spanking or use of physical pain infliction methods. I use and like the parenting methods that Barbara Coloroso recommends and also William Sears M.D. and Martha Sears R.N..
It would be a wonderful world if children enjoyed learning and had time and chose to satisfy their curiosities by autodidactism. However, I know that not all of learning is fun and games, especially if there are medical problems or learning disabilities. I respect academic rigor and know that it takes serious effort and persistance over the long haul.
I support helping kids achieve their goals. I like the idea that anyone can be anything they want only if they try hard enough, but I know the harsh realities of life and realize that there can be many barriers to fulfilling one's dreams. Barriers can be from within the child (in their control or not in their control) as well as from the parents (unintentionally or intentionally). Lastly, barriers from outside sources exist (colleges require that test score of applicants, etc.). Ideally kids would dodge the barriers thrown at them by various outside parties by doing what has to be done in order to do what they want to do, with the help of supportive parents and community members, and by working as hard as they can so they don't get in their own way while on the journey.