I never really liked the term "homeschooling" as it implies that we do school at home. Actually we don't "do school" at all. The "unschooling" term accurately implies that, but I think it also implies that we don't do anything. I so much prefer the term "life learning" or just acknowledging the fact that we all are Always Learning. By doing so, we discuss things that others may take for granted or just ignore. We observe and interact with things differently. Everyday outings give us lessons in subjects too varied to be limited to one subject in a 45 minute period. My kids are learning real lessons in the real world. They are not shut away for 12 years to become prepared to live in the real world - they do it every day. So they are learning things in a different way to the 'school' way. Sami is learning to read from reading things that interest her - movie titles, comic books, books about princesses, food labels, etc. AJ is often doing math in his head as he says aloud "3 plus 3 is, um..6". It's like a game to him. We play lots of games. We don't look at the 'educational' value but whether we enjoy them. It's not like I say "ok, who wants to play Monopoly because we need to get some math in today?". It's more like "we played Monopoly today...and had a great time".
We have some "schooly" things here like workbooks, flashcards and other manipulatives. They are just there if the kids choose to use them, in whatever way they wish, whenever they wish. Just like the other things at their disposal like pens, pencils, paper, blocks, dolls, cars, etc.
Besides the actual 'stuff' that they are learning, they are always learning the deeper lessons of human dynamics. And they are teaching me so much too. I'm learning more about unconditional love, patience, gratitude, service and multi-tasking!
Right now Sami is really testing my levels of patience. She gets so angry at the slightest thing and can be just plain nasty to AJ. What is she reflecting? What does she need? What is causing the imbalance in her body chemistry?
AJ is so sweet and gentle to Nicholas and I and others. But with Sami, he seems to enjoy aggravating her.
Nicholas looks at me with such wise eyes as if to ask why this world isn't more peaceful and gentle. He is that. He's also so joyful and can see the humour in a funny sound or the look on someone's face.
When I was younger, I thought that when I left school, I would have all the knowledge that I would need in life. I have learnt more since I left school than I ever did while I was there.
Life is good!