Friends, I’ve just returned home from my very first visit to a state homeschooling convention.
First, it was awesome. There’s no way to get around the fact that we were surrounded by several other thousand people who were strangers and yet like-minded and that was pretty cool.
Going in to the experience I was a little nervous, as I assumed I would be entering into a sea of calico yoke-dresses and denim jumpers. I was confident the women would all have very long hair and sprinkle their conversation with adoring mentions of their families, “where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and all the children are above average.”
I was wrong. While there were definitely old-school homeschooler sighting out and about, I am surprised to report the vast majority of attendees would not be immediately identifiable as home educators in a police line up (or airport people watching marathon, for that matter!). They pass as normal, friends! The face of homeschooling is changing!
That being said, one thing did become crystal clear during the experience: while the Age of the Home School Denim Jumper has passed the Age of the Rolling Crate has arrived.
The rolly-crate is the new denim jumper.
From a practical standpoint I totally get the rolling, collapsable carry all, especially as a practical aid for the home schooling parent purchasing a year’s worth of curriculum in a frenzy of conference discounts and new educational model exposure. Who really wants those plastic bags cutting into your arms constantly when you could instead scoot along the convention center hallways unburdened by texts and workbooks and penmanship guides, paper airplane models and STEM aids and safety-dulled pocket knives?! That’s right. No one.
But a word from the perspective of the person who wasn’t dragging a rolly-cart here: stop running over my feet with your wheeled, heavy carriages of educational doom! Accept the inevitable fact that if your crate dimensions are 16″ x 16.5″ x 14.5″ it will never, ever fit down a row of auditorium seating leaving only 12″ of space from chair front to seat back. Don’t even try to squish yourself down the row of the workshop. It’s not happening.
I don’t intend to be a downer, but facts are facts and if you can’t identify that your rolly-cart isn’t going to go vroom like a greased Rubix cube … well, I know there has to be a perfect math curriculum available for you in the exhibitor auditorium just down the hall. Go check it out.
Homeschoolers used to look like this:
But now, with the changing of the old guard, homeschoolers look like this:
And we’re all the better for it.