These words have been running through my head since last evening when I read a post by a woman who was of the opinion that every homeschooler needed to make sure that they were up and dressed, along with the children, each and every day to be at their most productive. She had a decent argument, presented her case well, and attempted not to be rude (I'm hoping that wasn't her intent). I personally don't agree with her post, I informed her of that very politely and told her that I respected her right to her opinion, and I spoke of the matter with my husband and, later, my children.
I have seen questions on the matter of "to get dressed or not" at least weekly since the beginning of September on various Facebook groups which I belong to. Some are genuinely curious as to what others wear in their homeschool, some are looking for a general direction to go in, and others are attempting to get their opinions out there for the world to see.
Here is the problem with this issue. It divides us, unpleasantly in some cases, between those who think that pajama days every day (or at least some days) are fine and those who think that if you're not up and dressed you are simply being lazy and couldn't possibly be as productive as you could be ... And everything on the scale in between.
As a whole we homeschoolers are a very diverse lot. There are as many ways of teaching a child as there are children. What works best for me probably won't do so for you and vise versa. We live in a time of blessings (and the sometimes curse) of an abundance of different curricula that we can choose from. There are those who follow the classic methods, those that unschool, those that choose secular texts, those that chose Christian texts (of the many different varieties), and those who mash it all up into a mix that works for them. We're made up of families who started the homeschool journey intentionally, those who ended up here due to unfortunate childhood illnesses, those who felt called by God to do this, and all sorts of other situations and reasons.
We make jokes often about how others see us, sometimes as a defense mechanism and sometimes because we truly find their views humorous from our side of the fence. We joke that some of the perks of homeschooling are being able to sleep in and do our lessons in our pajamas. And, in my humble opinion, it is one of the perks (at least the pajama part).
"Judge not lest ye be judged..."
I try every day to keep my mouth in check before I blurt out random irritations at what I see going on around me. People who are strong in their opinions trying to ram it down others throats simply because they feel that they are being judged by the actions of people whom they do not even know. I struggle with this every day, I struggle not to be just as rude as I perceive many of them to be, I strive to turn the other cheek.
In our home we have a routine that works for us. The children get up, they eat breakfast, they brush their teeth and hair, don their glasses, do their chores, and get ready for school. If somewhere in there they choose to get dressed then I'm all for it. If they choose to come to their desks in their pajamas I'm OK with that too. When we have somewhere we're going that day the children all know how to dress appropriately for what we're doing. Yes, sometimes I do the "mom thing" and send them to change a shirt or a ripped pair of jeans before we head out. Getting dressed before you head out the door is a part of life (though I've been guilty of going to the store in pajama pants). Heck, if we have no plans that day 90% of the time you'll find me in some form of either pajamas or comfy clothing. I prefer to be comfortable so that I can get dirty with the children, so that I can get down to their level comfortably when we're playing games, so that I can relax and do my job of mothering in the way that works for me.
Personally I don't care if you wear pajamas during lesson time, wear pajamas to the store, or get dressed to the nines to sit on your couch and stare at the television. We're all different. We're all individuals. We're all unique. It is our ability to be ourselves that makes us beautiful. As a group homeschoolers are judged by those who don't understand what we do, we don't need to begin to judge each other on something as trivial as what we're wearing.
The following are words from ECJ:
"I usually get dressed in the mornings, not because I have to but
because going outside in the winter with pajama pants on is a little
cold. Some days I do my lessons in my pajama pants just because I'm
more comfortable that way that day. Since we started homeschooling
I like that I don't have to worry about what people think of what I'm wearing,
I don't get picked on for having the wrong thing on or being too short.
I work my butt off at my work every day because I want to learn
as much as I can and wearing clothing doesn't make a difference in how well
I can think. I won't worry what other people think of me anymore
because I know just how good I am even if they don't see it because
they can't see past my flannel pajama pants."
Now, it's still early Saturday morning and I'm going to enjoy the rest of my day. I've made breakfast and had a shower. Then I got dressed... In a t-shirt and my pajama jeans *grin*.
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