I would arrange all my school supplies – and then arrange them again.
I would pick out my outfit.
I would lie awake at night with nervous anticipation. Would I like my teacher? Would I get the same class as my best friend?
Back to school was one of my favorite times of the year.
It’s different for my son.
Part of it is because we homeschool. (The first day of school just doesn’t have the same allure when it’s a continuation of your summer learning with your mom and brother.)
Most of it is that my son dreads starting another year “behind.”
He knows each year brings a new grade level. With that also comes a greater gap between his abilities and that of his peers.
As much as I reassure him that grade level means very little and that he is performing above grade level in just as many subjects as he is delayed, it still troubles him each year.
If I am being honest, it troubles me too.
Back to school and the struggling learner just don’t always go well together, do they?
Will This Be The Year?
The back to school season brings with it the same question every year.
Will this be the year?
Will this be the year he finally learns to read independently?
Will this be the year all of the interventions begin to help?
Will this be the year we finally figure this out?
Back to School and the Struggling Learner
The older my son gets, the more getting ready for a new school year feels like an assessment and, if I am being honest, a failure on both our parts. It can be discouraging, for both my son and me to begin a new school year in what feels like the exact same place we began the last.
I don’t want to go into our new year discouraged, and I certainly don’t want my son to feel like he is starting off already behind. In an effort to avoid the “Will This Be The Year?” question and subsequent dismay, this year I have tried to be intentional about focusing on what I know to be true about homeschooling in general, and especially homeschooling children with learning differences.
Maybe, like me, you are gearing up for the reality that comes with back to school and the struggling learner.
Join me today at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers. I share our approach to a new school year and all the ways I avoid asking the question, “Will This Be The Year?”
This is the final post in our series – 5 Days of Homeschooling Children With Learning Differences.
Shawna Wingert is a former training and development professional turned education specialist, and has homeschooled her two children for the last ten years.Shawna has written four books about homeschooling unique learners and has been featured in homeschooling discussions on Today.com, The Mighty, Simple Homeschool, My Little Poppies and Raising Lifelong Leaners.
You can find her online here at DifferentByDesignLearning.com.