Is Your Homeschool Notebooking Parental Busywork or Child Creation?Suzanne Broadhurst
Does the word notebooking suggest joyful twitters of discovery or terrifying shivers of more work to do? The answer might be in its application. Notebooking, in its practical outworking, falls into two categories:
- Parental Busywork in which the parent or co-op teacher does most of the work through preparation
- Child Creation in which the child has free reign to create and record his own journey of discovery
We must ask, “Which one meets the needs of the child? And which of the teacher?”
Parental Control Means Parental Busywork
As parents (or co-op teachers) putting together notebooks, lapbooks, and other such creative expressions, we can get lost in our own quest for creativity and forget that it is the children’s creativity and love for learning that we want to foster, not our own need for a pretty product.
Are you tired of prepping notebooks?
Here are a few suggestions as I’ve been there, I know the temptation:
- Parents: Gather supplies.
- Children: Use the supplies.
- Parents: Assign concepts to be incorporated.
- Children: Use assigned concepts as a template for individuality.
- Parents: Lead.
- Children: Create.
Notebooking is a process, not a product.
Child Creation Means Child Control
As parents, we want the best for our children. However, that best may not be the output they produce but the process they employ.
Will a child learn to cut a straight line if we do all the cutting for them?Will a child learn which colors look right together if we tell them what colors they must use?Will a child learn to assimilate information if we tell them how it must be organized?
What To Do When We the Adults Want to Create
If we want to create something pretty, something with straight lines and perfect glue jobs, then there’s a simple solution: Create a notebook ourselves!
Work alongside your child making your notebook as they create their own.
When we lead our children by our example, rather than control them with our druthers, we will all have a better time. We’ll also learn more about the subject, while we discover more about ourselves and each other.
You can share supplies, swap information, bond and learn. Together.
When it comes to notebooking, leave control at the door and embrace the creative process.
Share supplies, swap information, bond and learn.