I’ve been reading quite a bit about unschooling methods recently, courtesy of this website, and I’ve been mulling it over. I have always been very child-led (co-sleeping, baby-led weaning and now home-ed, to name but a few parenting choices I’ve made along the way), so it would make sense to continue the theme into education.
However, I just can’t get over the feeling that (a) I need to be able to show PROOF of their learning (to husband, family, LEA etc.) and (b) that they should be keeping up with their schooled peers. Until I get over the fear that they will come out of HE quite thick and nothing to show for it, then I will never be an unschooler. Not that unschooled children are thick (the ones I’ve met seem very intelligent): It is a fear based on nothing but the ridiculous idea that if I’m not leading their education then they won’t move forward. I know it is nonsense but the fear is still there.
Maybe unschooling is something I can aim for over time as there is no doubt that both sausages would respond well to it (what child wouldn’t?).
M has not been responding well to parental-led education lately so with unschooling in mind, this week I have only pushed once for some written work from M (D has done reams of the stuff off her own back) and it started well but ended in tears (more of that another time); I have put the telly on whenever it has been requested (D is obsessed with Jake and the Neverland Pirates at the moment); let M play on her new Lego app as long as she wants; let D use her new-found Lego building skills and let them both watch films whenever they want.
The sausages couldn’t be happier, they even seem to be able to self-regulate a bit (D switched the telly off and said she wanted to do something “not on a laptop” and M had a break from playing her Lego app to play an imaginative game with D and is currently working on a puppet show).
But the exercise books are still there, I can seem them out of the corner of my eye as I type, and they are screaming to be used.
I am definitely not ready to be an unschooler… yet.