"So when does home school end for the summer?"

One of the questions we've been asked a number of times in the past month is when we are going to stop home schooling for the summer.  The question is a perfectly logical one in the context of a learning that necessarily happens outside the home and in a school.  We can rephrase it many different ways: "When does the school close?"  "When are classes done?"  "When does funding run out for this year?" etc.  Today I was reading this discussion about a growing movement to shorten summer holidays and follow the lead of KIPP and other alternative and more aggressive schooling regiments.

But the question makes no sense in the context of home school.  It's not easy for me to sum up how we approach learning from a philosophical or practical point of view, but it's fair to say that for us, learning is a way of life vs. an activity; and not just our girls.  It's what what we all do as a family.  It's how we navigate.  It's painting all morning, and skiing all afternoon, math at breakfast, and reading until 11:00 pm, hours spent working over pots of soup and insect classification, science experiments in the driveway and history in the hammock.  It's sporadic and focused, engaged and mysterious.  It's bags of books from the library so heavy you can't lift them.  It's equally work punctuated by breaks and breaks punctuated by work.

But most of all, it's something that we can't stop doing in the summer.  Not because we have to, but because this is what we do.  Should you do it?  I have no idea.  It's just what we do.

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