Donum haec nutz est…
Adults are much smarter than kids, but kids will learn a lot from the $20 textbook Getting Started With Latin!
When other homeschool moms tell me that they “learn so much from their kids” or “sometimes I feel that *they* are the teacher,” something in my soul dies.
Nope. Not me. I’m an adult. I’ve done things. I’ve seen things, man. And kids, well, their mommies make them breakfast.
I don’t learn anything from my kids that I don't learn from standing in line at the post office or dealing with Verizon Customer Service, namely self-control in the face of mind-numbing laziness and willful disinterest.
Because even really dumb adults can do really difficult things. Take regular showers. Read for pleasure. Tell time on an analog clock. File taxes. Those are really difficult things, and I’ll posit that while 95% of adults over the ages of 25 can do all of these things, *maybe* .005% of kids under the age of 12 can.
So, while all other homeschool kids are apparently super-motivated and self-starters, my kids are normal, gross, lazy teenage boys who think they’re funny even though all of their jokes involve grunts and body noises.
Hilarious Things According to My "Sheltered" Homeschooled Children
- Walk into room, yell "Gotti!"
- Shout "Derp" at another person, then run away.
- Declare "I am Juan" while your brother responds "I am Jose." (Do these in Speedy Gonzalez accents)
- Whenever an adult says the name of any color, ask, "Why's it gotta be <color>? That's racist!"
- Repeat "Gotti!" - but even louder this time
- Say "Deez Nuts" under your breath and then pretend you didn't.
- Claim you "didn't know what deez nuts meant."
- Call your brother "Duncey McDuncerson"
- Call your brother "Nube"
- Use drag queen slang you heard on RuPaul, i.e. "ConDRAGulations!" and "Par-tee!"
- Use drag slang when your mom is already really, really mad at you. Then sashay away, announcing "I'll Sashay Away!" or "Sashay! Chantay!"
- When you are punished for aforementioned, accuse your long-suffering mother of being "transphobic."
- Only ONLY *ONLY* ever do these things at home, so that when your mother tries to comisserate with other moms, nobody believes that such perfectly-behaved, courteous, charming, and obedient children would ever do any of the above.
- When your mother begins crying in public, smirk to your brother and then silently, slowly, mouth the word..."Gotti!"
The only successful leverage I have over them is withholding Call of Duty, which I swore I would never let them play. Not only did I cave, I actually bought them more games in the Call of Duty series so I could amass more potential leverage. You show me a parent, and I’ll show you someone who has compromised all of their values in the name of “just 15 minutes of quiet.”
Unlike everyone else's homeschool kids, who apparently open up to their parents a rainbow of learning and show them the joy of a child's imagination, my boys use their Kindles to look up sex manuals on amazon.com and leave reviews such as "FIVE STARS! ME AND MY MANY, MANY GIRLFIRENDS LOVE THIS BOOK!"
When - like a 1930s factory foreman I yell out - “ALGEBRA TIME” my heretofore romping, healthy children have a sudden 1-hour GI attack and only emerge precisely at Guitar Time. I think they believe that “Algebra” is Greek for “pretend to void your bowels in the lengthiest, most luxurious manner possible.”
My boys literally hide in their laundry basket under a mountain of dirty clothes when it’s school time. After they were discovered and forced to do actual schooling, they made a rough Latin translation for “Deez Nutz” and then worked it into every single sample sentence, as in:
- “Agricola reginae donum dat."
- "Donum haec nutz est."
- "Regina laeta nutz amat.”
Ahhh, the joys of a child's imagination.
By the way, if you would like for your homeschooled kids to learn Latin, I really recommend Getting Started With Latin - my kids might not use their Latin responsibly, but they learned enough Latin to offend me with it, and that's saying a lot.
The consequence for that little gem was a blend of Latin and physical training - count out each of the 50 pushups in Latin. Unus...Duo...It became quite amusing during the "duodeviginti" area.
Maybe when we share homeschool mom stories, I should say “My kids are so committed to practicing Latin numbers - while getting fit - that they do whatever it takes to make sure they do 50 pushups a day so they can count them out! I sure do learn so much from my little men!!”