We took the plunge yesterday and met M’s “evaluator”.
We had decided long ago to submit an evaluation of M.’s ‘progress” instead of the result of a standardized test to the local school district. Jim and I had many conversations about this, initially wanting to write our own evaluation, then deciding to have a third party conduct the evaluation for us. A couple of people came to mind, and we went with the one who responded more promptly . She was pleasure to work with and the evaluation resulted in a relaxed conversation between J. and M. M. had brought a folder with some of his work (mostly drawings, some calculations of money saved/money needed to buy prized Lego-sets and other miscellaneous items). He later commented over dinner how he had fun talking to “that lady” about his interests. What a joyful interaction!
I can’t help but thinking of this as an example of the creativity/freedom that homeschooling allows, if one tries to experiment with alternatives. Submitting an evaluation to your local school district is not an exciting option per se, because it forcibly introduces an element of rigidity in an otherwise fairly “free-range” (for luck of a better term) approach. But interacting with an interested adult, telling her about your own interests and then going on to play in the nearby playground is, in my mind, a million times better then waisting energy on a standardized test.