What you Can’t Get Away With

Somedays, it stinks to be a homeschooled kid.

Here was Silas’ math from the other day.

See? I try to make math fun! We even have a Minecraft math book!

It took him, I kid you not, 2 hours. 75% of that was spent staring out the window, forgetting what he was doing, getting a drink, trying to get me to talk about Minecraft, and whining. It’s not that he doesn’t know how to do it.

When I was his age, I could have done this page in about five minutes. It’s not that I was ever good at math–especially not Long Division. It’s just that I, like all the other literature kids out there, would have gone all Bletchley Park on the code at the bottom and worked backward to figure out what the answers to the various problems must be. This is also known as “Why I didn’t learn how to do math properly until 11th grade.” In a class of 30 students, my teachers never noticed or cared. I reliably produced the right answers, and then I got to spend all of 4th-grade math class rereading The Westing Game under my desk. Everyone was happy.

But when you’re in a class of two, you just don’t get away with this kind of nonsense. Silas absolutely started with the ol’ Room 40 method, but when I asked him how he knew that 34 x 3 = 102, I didn’t take, “I just figured it out in my head” for an answer (from another kid, I might have believed it, but not from this one. He’s too like me in that way.). So he had to work it all out, one digit at a time, on scratch paper, even though he knew every answer.

Sometimes, being homeschooled really stinks. Especially when your mom used all your tricks back in ancient history and recognizes them when they circle back around.


Aili Written by:


  1. August 21, 2019

    Or you could just wait until 11th grade…..

    • Aili
      September 9, 2019

      😀 pretty sure we’ve covered “I’m too Type-A for real unschooling”!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *