Why I Now Love the World Cup

I have to start this post with a confession.

We have been struggling with Home Ed.

Whilst Bean has been making progress, it has been a battle to get him to do anything. It’s been hard for all of us and it got to the point this week where I had had enough.

Image courtesy of vectorolie / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of vectorolie / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

And so we sat down with Bean and talked about what wasn’t working. We gave him options, ranging from going back to school (met with horror), having a completely structured home education (met with almost as much horror) and other options in between. He decided on a project based, fairly unstructured approach, which is actually what I had envisaged when we first started out, but had been unable to get him to engage with. We discussed what this might mean, how education might look this way and he was happy with it. So then we asked him to spend the rest of the evening thinking of the topic he wanted to start with, and just before bedtime, the answer came : The World Cup.

And so this is how the biggest wall in our living room came to be covered with an enormous map of the world. Bean asked what I was putting it up there for. I explained that I thought we could explore the various countries taking part in the world cup. He was delighted – apparently we are combining his two favourite subjects and he’s really excited by the suggestions I made. He spent half an hour just exploring the map and has made a start on drawing the flags of the 32 countries taking part.

When that’s done, we’re going to look at each of the eight groups in the World Cup – using a booklet for each, we’ll track the games and scores and find out more about each of the countries. As the competition progresses, we’ll go more in depth about the countries that go further. We’ll be including art and design, maths, English, geography, history and anything else that takes our fancy as we make our way through this together. He looked happy. I felt happy.

And, because he seems to have known that something needed to change anyway, he has *finally* agreed that we can start going to some of the local Home Ed meetups. We start this week with a Home Ed Geocaching walk – something he couldn’t resist.

So, it’s taken us 6 months, but I think he is finally ready to really begin this journey.

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8 comments on “Why I Now Love the World Cup

  1. Firstly let me say ‘hello’ and it is lovely to meet you. This post is so honest and it had been a pleasure to read it.
    It can be hard to find your stride at the beginning because I think that as parents our expectations can be very different at first to those of our children. It takes a few months to really settle in to a style of learning which suits but once you get there everything changes. I’m sure that Bean will be excited and engaged now that he has found a way of learning which he is comfortable with.

    Thanks so very much for linking up with this weeks #homeedlinkup 🙂

  2. Great idea with the world cup; my younger brother is home educated (he’s 9) and it’s lovely to read other stories about home ed! 🙂

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  4. I loved reading your posts – I have to say I’m glad it’s not just me who’s been struggling to get their child to engage! I think you’ve done the right thing – start with his interest and go from there. He’ll be a world expert soon 🙂

  5. I love the idea of learning about each country during the world cup! May I ask, why is it you home school and for how long have you been doing it?

    • We’ve been home educating Bean since November. Plum is learning to read at the moment as well, and we’re not planning on sending either her or PK to school at all.

      We home educate for a number of reasons – we have lost faith in the education system, with all the changes made, which we don’t think bring any benefit to children. There were other reasons too, such as constantly battling for him to be given reading material which matched his reading ability (four years ahead of his actual age) and for to him to be able to work to his ability in maths.

  6. That is great news! My sons are 6 and 3 and haven’t gone/won’t be going to school. We follow a similar approach of using their interests to build in various activities and it works well (usually!).

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