There's a lot of buzz right now around children learning without school, and the different terms used can be confusing. I see the word unschooling pop up in different contexts and sometimes feel a bit flat when I see what it is describing. Not because someone else is doing it 'wrong', but because when this … Continue reading What is unschooling?
Time outs, naughty steps and reward charts were never on my radar. None of that has ever made any sense to me. Even so, when my eldest son was younger I had to marvel at friends who did these things, and at how their children accepted them with minimal resistance. It was beyond my comprehension. … Continue reading Why unschooling works for PDA children
We've spent a few days with money on our minds. Mostly because we've just moved house, so there are lots of tempting ways to spend too much. And, while I've been busy doing calculations in my head and on little bits of paper, I've noticed that the children are also thinking about money in different … Continue reading Money, money, money…
There are many things about living without school that continue to fascinate me. Although, when I see these things in action, what fascinates me even more is how I could have ever understood things differently. When you see life and learning flow together naturally and uncoerced, you have to wonder why we make it all … Continue reading Is it fun or is it learning? Does it matter?
What happens when an unschooler wants to go into higher education? How does a child who has spent years following their interests possibly get their head round formal study and exams? There's plenty of evidence that they do just that, so, although we're not quite there yet ourselves, I know that at first glance the … Continue reading When unschooling means exams
A few days ago, just before she went to bed, my daughter decided to write down her morning routine. She felt like her mornings would be easier if she could just follow the same schedule every day, so she wrote it out and she keeps it on her dresser. The schedule starts with waking up, … Continue reading Structures and freedom
Sometimes, it's easy to feel confident. Seeing a child curled up reading a book, looking up ingredients to do some baking, or just getting cross about politics in the kitchen. At these times, I can't help but think that all is well. We look like someone's idea of what this should look like. We are … Continue reading Trusting the quiet moments
Well, life in semi-lockdown goes on, and we've had plenty of time to settle into new rhythms. Human beings are certainly adaptable creatures. What would have been unthinkable just months ago seems relatively normal now. It's true that a lot of conversations start with a hopeful, 'After lockdown...', but generally the days pass peacefully enough … Continue reading What did we do today?
I was at an event in a local primary school with D and C a few months ago. It was friendly and cheerful enough with lots of colourful pictures and creative projects covering the walls. Then, on the way out, I caught sight of a sign on a noticeboard. It said that the local council … Continue reading Truth to power? Sure, let’s bring it on
I started this post about self compassion a while ago and, for some reason, never got round to finishing it. Now feels like a good time. Here we all are trying to hold space for our children whilst also attempting to stay on solid ground ourselves... There can't be a more important life skill for … Continue reading Self compassion in lockdown times