It took me until my 30’s to even begin to learn what it even means to be in control of my own problems. I’m still working on it as I look ahead into my 40’s. I was rereading this post about unschooling apraxia by Jennifer McGrail. The following phrase jumped out at me:
“His not being able to tie well or write neatly are not an issue unless he decides they’re an issue.”
Did anyone along the way ever teach you that there isn’t a problem unless you decide there’s a problem? Or, like me, did you learn from early childhood that everyone else around you must be right about what’s problematic… and they have the right to define it for you? Continue Reading
In a recent conversation about homeschooling special needs (dysgraphia, dyslexia, etc.), a new homeschooler/education adventurer said the following to me. It’s a common reaction, especially if you have limited experience with homeschooling overall.
“I don’t think unschooling is for us. I like the ideas, but I panic. My kids are already middle-school age and I only have a limited amount of time left. And it makes me really uncomfortable. And, I’m a writer. That’s really important to me. I want them to read. Everyone in my family reads. I really think they need to as well.”
I chose not to respond at the time, because it felt like anything I might say would add pressure to a person already putting intense pressure on herself. Knowing that this woman was already maxing out her courage, it seemed like a time to just listen.
Someday, sometime, this is what I’d wish for her to think about. Continue Reading
Our daughter was 11 when we unenrolled her from public school. For the first 11 years of her life, I worked full-time-plus, in an office, and for several of those years, I was also a full-time college student. My husband works a 55-hour-a-week office job as well (much of that in the late evening and early morning hours), and there were days we felt like we didn’t even see our house, or each other. Continue Reading
SARAH D: So, I’m reading a lot regarding unschooling at the moment, most of it seems to be geared towards giving our children all their wants/needs – first thing is this scriptural? Wants not needs – I mean, should we get our children all their wants? Will they not turn into spoilt brats? Secondly, what if you just can’t facilitate them? Financially, space-wise, time etc?
Reading a friend’s homeschooling blog I spotted a troll who commented, “Who ever learned anything at home? Discovery Channel doesn’t count.”
I didn’t enter unschooling with a lot of skepticism, and I haven’t received many surprises from unschooling that are not common to parenting in general, but statements such as that one do rather stun me to disbelief. Continue Reading
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
A friend who replicates school at home in her homeschool once said to me, in a comparison of our parenting and homeschooling styles, “I know you give in to your children, and that’s okay, that’s your choice …”
Frankly, I was too taken aback at the flat statement to respond at the time, but I thought about it a lot afterward. And here’s what I thought: I don’t give in to my kids … but I can see why she thinks that I do.