Manifesting a Nest

How will we make sure our children don’t miss out on learning everything they need to know? Our answer to this is — by faith, we’re certain that they will receive the learning opportunity at the right time for them.

Here’s a recent, practical example.

Aisha was sitting on my lap recently. “What is a bird’s nest made of?” she asks — out of the blue. I feel triumphant by the question — surely this is a clear demonstration that although we had previously been talking about food, Aisha’s unschooled mind is ranging wider in search of truth and knowledge. Continue Reading

Unschooling Hopes

What I hoped to see happen in unschooling my children was simple. I wanted a life where school simply wasn’t. I wanted my kids to fully experience life–not a different kind of schooling, not school at home, not superior curriculum. I wanted to continue raising kids that love life and love learning about all kinds of things this spectacular world has to offer.

One of the first ‘a-ha’ moments, if you will, happened one warm September afternoon when we were all just hanging about outside. The kids, around six and eight years old (if I’m remembering correctly) were looking at various things under the microscope my husband had set up on the picnic table. They were bringing us all kinds of things to look at–water from a puddle, grass, toenails, bugs both dead and alive, hairs both human and dog/cat/critter…you name it, they wanted to put it under the microscope. We’d been at this for awhile on that evening, the four of us enjoying our time together outside and exploring the microscopic world. Continue Reading

Unschooling to Us Is About Being Whole

When we first started on our unschooling journey, I was desperately trying to ease the frustration that my daughter and I had over the formal curricula I had chosen.

Unschooling was an escape from the tests, grades, and pressures of academia. But over the years, unschooling has come to mean much more to us.

Unschooling to us is about being whole.

whole: adjective

  1. comprising the full quantity, amount, extent: entire, full.
  2. containing all the elements properly belonging; complete.
  3. not broken, damaged, or impaired; intact.

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What I Have Learned from God About Unschooling

God is everywhere working all around us, just as learning is everywhere, and with both all we have to do is open our eyes to see so we can join in.

When God really wants us to learn something He speaks to us through our circumstances exactly where we are.

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Unschooling Question: What About Math and the Other Boring Stuff They Need?

This post was written back in 2008– since then we have become completely radical unschoolers and it has been an amazing journey.  Back then I never would have guessed the kids would become passionately interested in and teach themselves (yes, they have taken on ALL the boring stuff.:))

I run into this question often from friends, family members, forums, and even unschooling friends. Many are fearful enough that their children won’t naturally attempt to learn things they deem boring or important (often both) that they specifically purchase a curriculum for just that subject – regardless of whether the child has shown interest in it. Continue Reading

When Unschooling Becomes a Lifestyle

The other day the antique appraiser I help out, remembering how in the past I have needed to work less in order to spend time teaching the kids, asked when I needed to change my schedule and be less available. It caught me off guard because I have gotten so used to our lifestyle of learning.

It took me a moment to come up with an answer that would avoid getting into this whole unschooling business but also satisfy her. I said that the kids had, for the most part, taken over their own learning and listed quickly off all the projects they have done in the last few months, being careful to point out the expected learning that has occurred in this unexpected way. She was satisfied and moved on to the project at hand while I got to be completely honest without going into a detailed explanation. Continue Reading

Why I Stopped Stressing Myself Out With Classical Homeschooling

I am a questioner. I just am. I see everything in layers and take practically nothing at face value. I can’t stop myself, I question everything and constantly seek deeper definitions for simple things.

So you can only imagine what happened to my brain the first time I saw this animated version of Sir Ken Robinson’s famous TED speech. Seriously, go watch it if you haven’t already. Or watch it again, even if you have!

I am a sucker for logic. And that there just makes a darn lot of sense. Continue Reading

Third Culture School – When Christians Unschool in a Homeschooling World

Have you ever heard the term Third Culture Kids?  It’s a term used pretty often to describe Missionary’s kids.  They’re from one culture, but they grow up in another. So they don’t fully fit in either.

That’s how I feel as a Christian unschooler.

Most of the unschoolers that I’m aware of, especially radical unschoolers, are not Christian. They are free lovin’, blowin’ in the wind hippies.

And most of the homeschoolers I know are staunchly Christian.  No free lovin’ or wind blowin’ involved. Continue Reading

New to Unschooling? Begin at the Beginning

So you have prayed and researched and prayed a lot more and you definitely feel God calling you towards unschooling. Suddenly you are panicked – no more curriculum, no more parent-led schedules, no more kids being taught what the parents think the kids should know.

Now what!?

getting soaked and making friends

First, relax, and pray. If this is where God is leading you then He will help you more than any of us. Continue Reading