Monday, May 13, 2019

Homeschooling the Teen Years - Pulling Double Duty as Parents and Educators for Year-end Events

A week ago, we attended A(age 18)'s graduation from junior college. I can't help but to compare and contrast the roll of "parent" at an event like that verses that of "parent/educator" at a similar homeschooling event, like a say a homeschool prom (which we happened to have had this weekend)
or graduation (which is coming up, for us, next weekend).

Last weekend, we got to do the parent thing.  We ordered and sent out announcements, threw a party for our grad and her friends, and snapped a few photos.  Other than that, all we had to do was show up (making sure everyone had something vaguely appropriate to wear).

There were school officials taking care of all the rest of the details from sign-in to clean up.

They had set up fun little photo stations around the school.

They provided cupcakes and coffee afterwards (I didn't get a picture, but there was a lovely little spread complete with silver trays and teapots).  They even live-streamed the whole thing for friends and relatives who couldn't make it. It was very nice.

Our homeschool prom was very nice too.

But, on top of preparing girls' dresses, doing their hair, and snapping photos...

… there were planning meetings, and crafting sessions, cupcakes and cookies to be baked (actually an entire dinner was parent provided).

Parents set-up, chaperoned, did dishes, and even cleaned bathrooms (some staying well into the next morning).

 In our case, the Man of the House chaperoned, I did dishes, and C (age 12 and too young to officially attend) served tables.

There was also a last second (parent led) scramble to purchase a small thank you gift and card for the fantastic homeschool mom who organized the whole thing (and made our amounts of work look small in comparison).

It was a lot of work.

The homeschool graduation next week will be a lot of work, too.  I just saw the schedule assuring parents that we ought to have all the clean-up done by 3:00 o'clock in the afternoon.  Set-up will take place the day before, grads show up at 9:00 in the morning for a walk-thru and pictures (taken by one of the parents, I'm sure), the graduation will take place at 11:00 with a light (parent provided) lunch reception to follow, and then the clean-up.

Which reminds me - I still have to set up a "thank you" group on Facebook to find out which of us will run out for a card and gift for the lucky lady in charge of this event, as well.

It's a lot of work.  In the end, the trade off of being able to be there for the teens, and getting to be a part of their day - to mold it and personalize it for them in ways we couldn't as just parents is completely worth it.

But it's a lot work.

It's great (if sometimes exhausting) to be a homeschooler.


Ticia said...

I'm kinda excited for a future time when my kids might want to attend a prom. Of course, right now, there's absolutely zero interest.
I just got a graduation invitation to one of the kids we used to do co-op with. It's weird to realize I know all these people who are graduating now.

MaryAnne said...

Honestly, parents do most of that in our local public school too.

The prom sounds amazing (so much better than the school ones!)