I started yesterday with the best intentions to catch up on paperwork and blogging. We all know about best intentions
Ah well, lots of other stuff was achieved instead. As part of my continuing (ongoing, proactive ) campaign to improve Big’s self-esteem as she compares herself to school children and finds her education wanting (sigh) I’d tracked down some Science SATs papers (yes, I know Science SATs have been withdrawn but it still gives her an idea of what she’d have been up against) and they did the first one in the morning. Then I marked them and checked out the levels – they are on track for a level 4 for Small and a level 5 for Big if they can keep up their scores across the second half of the test.
Both of them were quite chuffed with that. They’ve done no test specific preparation (I didn’t do any more than scan the paper myself to check if it was at all doable) and very little in the way of lesson type science. But they both love things like Questionaut, and we do lots of discussion of, well, everything, in day to day life, as well as every now and then doing explicit science type stuff. (I should note at this point that they probably do rather more than you’ll find in that category link, but quite a lot of it I don’t write about, or I don’t tick the right category box. Mea culpa.)
Which all makes me wonder – what was all the fuss about with the SATs stuff anyway? If children can just acquire the information required to do so well on them in day to day life, why did schools/ teachers make a fuss about it all? Why did anyone *need* to teach to the test, or children need to get stressed out about it all?
What am I missing? Because I must be missing something.
I’d like to claim that my children are geniuses (genii?) and that I’m the most fantastic home ed mother in the world. But truth be told, while I’m sure they are pretty bright, and we do have a lot of resources about, I’m just not that organised, and we muddle along doing what the blog says, making it up. So what is the secret? I think it’s that children are set up to learn, and that many schools actually get in the way of that process. Not all schools, and definitely not all teachers, but sadly more than should be. I think if kids are given time, space, confidence and support, they will learn, and it will be way more efficient than you could ever believe possible. I just wish that we could set up our educational institutions to recognise those facts.