As any of you who may be following along on here, we have decided to school at home this year.
It was suggested by other home schoolers in my community to "de-school" my oldest, who was attending public school for the last 7 year. De-schooling, to my understanding, is basically teaching the child (and sometimes the parents as well) that learning doesn't always have to happen at a desk or in a classroom by staying away from formal learning activities as much as possible (workbooks and lessons) and to just relax.
So far, I am learning a lot about what my son knows and doesn't know yet and am starting to find out what he is actually interested in doing.
In public school, I found that so much of what he was doing was basically getting away with doing next to no school work, just fooling around and "socializing" every chance he got. I would attend the portfolio nights and parent teacher conferences and when it came time to show work, it was almost never there. The teachers comments were almost always something along the lines of "needs to focus on schoolwork" and "needs to better manage his time in class".
Now, I can focus on what he likes, and find a way to incorporate the core subjects into that.
I hope that over the next few months my son and I will both learn what it means to love learning again and will be able to find something to focus on to motivate his learning to reach the next level.