Saturday, November 6, 2010

Learning from Others

One of the things I love most about free-schooling*, is that my boys can learn from anyone. Currently they are off visiting their grandparents in Missouri. They've been gone more than three weeks, and have another four weeks before returning home. Most people I talk with say they can't imagine spending that much time away from their kids, and I will freely admit I've been falling deeper and deeper into depression with out the lights of my life being around. But I refuse to let my own needs hold back my children. I want them to explore this wide world, whether I am by their side or not. I know they are in wonderful, loving, capable hands. And they are learning things there, that I couldn't offer them here.

I find it's wonderful that my parents are so supportive of my educational choices. When telling their friends the boys were coming to visit, the first response, of course, was "What about school?" To which my mom proudly proclaimed, "They are home-schooled." When my aunt found out how long they would be staying, her response was "So you're doing home-school with them?" I love that my mom said, "Well they learn everyday." It's great that my mom and dad get a chance to see how learning can happen naturally. They had grand plans of things to do with the boys, but found that life got in the way. The first two weeks they didn't do anything planned, because the boys found their own ways to spend their time. Really, who could have planned that they would spend hours pounding nails into the porch, and loving every second of it? Or creating paper armies, and having a battle ensue across their living room floor? Things like that, just can't be planned.

I've often thought that my mom would have made a remarkable home-school mom, if only she had had the time, money, support, and confidence in herself to do it. I'm not sure if she ever thought it was an option for our family. I certainly never thought about it while I was growing up. But looking back, I can see how I learned more in the time spent with my family, than I ever did in the public schools I attended. I am grateful that I have loving, supportive parents, and that my children are getting the chance to know them.

*I came across the term free-schooling recently, and decided it's a more accurate way to describe what we do, as opposed to unschooling. I think when people hear the term unschooling, they assume no school or anti-school. Where as free-schooling is just how it sounds. My boys are free to school how ever, when ever, where ever they want. So from now on I will only be using the term free-schooling.


  1. That is great that your parents are supportive :)

    I love unschooling and I am anti school (wink)
    Free schooling is fine as a term, I would really like to get rid of the word school altogether. We just live and learn without school :)

  2. Stephanie, perhaps I should change it to free-learning?

    Or maybe just abandoning labels all together would be better.