Thursday, December 15, 2005

The Middle Years -- JUNIOR HIGH

Many people are surprised to hear that I consider middle school or junior high to be the worst years of my life. 'If I could turn back time' and wipe out my life during ages 10-13, I would be a much more balanced, healthy person today. Unfortunately, I can't, and I have to live with the repercussions. When people hear that I, like most people, abhored those years of my life (who didn't hate puberty?!), they usually make naive comments like, 'But you were homeschooled!! You shouldn't have had any problems!' HA. Well, guess what. I, too, had horrible 'friends' that taunted me and made fun of my baby fat. I had a group of girl friends who were my age, and they delighted in teasing and tormenting me. I shudder to think that I thought these girls were my best friends. I was so disillusioned and ignorant and BLIND. UGH.
As for the educational side of things, during middle school my family became even more active in the homeschool community, and we started attending 2-3 'co-ops' (co-operational education with other homeschooling families) a week, for science (I did Chemistry in 8th grade, & then repeated it in 11th grade because most kids don't do Chemistry so early!!), math, English (I read 2 'classics' a month for 'Book Discussion'), American Government and Economics, Politics, History, Geography, and more. Around 6th grade I started to become more and more independent and started planning my own education: selecting my own textbooks, planning out what I would do each year to achieve the next grade, studying for tests on my own, teaching myself, etc. I budgeted my time and figured out what I would need to do each day to complete the year's worth of schoolwork: experience that became invaluable when I entered higher education. By this time, I was a voracious reader, usually reading upwards of 75 books a year. I went to libraries and checked out entire oeuvre of authors (my favourites were Roald Dahl, Lois Lowry, Douglas Adams, Katherine Paterson, C.S. Lewis and AVI), usually taking home 15 books at a time to finish in two weeks. My parents made a rule that I wasn't allowed to read non-textbooks or non-school-related material (except for enough to realistically complete an English assignment) between 8-4pm, because I could easily read ALL day if left alone (all right, so my time-management skills weren't perfect, but hey, I was ten!!). My love for reading and insatiable thirst for knowledge are two other reasons why I loved homeschooling: I took charge of my education, was EXCITED to begin each school year, and had more time to read a LOT of wonderful books!! :)

1 comment:

iPhil said...

Um yeah - Teddy Hall. Bit of a Communista, I hear...

iPhil

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