The Best-Laid Plans…

…don’t always turn out to be the best unit studies.  The topic for my 3rd grader’s unit study this month was trees & leaves.   I collected stacks of library books and filled a 3 prong folder with interesting information and  activities.  We were going to have a good time!    Although we did collect leaves and acorns, and set up two science experiments – the unit study was a dud.  We both just couldn’t get into it.

Our chromatography experiment with various colored leaves.

You know what?  In 11 years of homeschooling, this is not the first time this has happened.  Nor will it be the last.   Not every lesson I plan is going to result in academic fireworks.   When I realized that his interest was flagging, I didn’t push the subject, I just let it go.  Why force an 8yo boy to learn about trees?  Because it’s written in ink on my plan book?  Nah, it’s not that serious.  Really, it isn’t.    I’m quite sure the topic will come up again in the future.   There’s so much in the world to learn about, why drag our heels in simple and compound leaves?

New homeschooling parents, I share this especially because I want you to know it is okay to fail sometimes.  To have lessons that don’t work out.  You are not a lousy homeschooling parent and the world will not collapse.  It is really is okay.   So we didn’t learn as much about tree rings as I had planned,  BUT we did discover a few pecans on our tree that the squirrels missed,  and which oak in our yard has the largest acorns.  Best of all, we learned that time spent nature together is never wasted.

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