Freedom With Unschooling
My initial idea of homeschooling was a structured day with a set curriculum. Basically school at home.
Well, that flippin’ went out the window day one!
I spent months before starting our homeschooling journey researching different ways to homeschool and various curriculums. During this research, I came across the term “unschooling”.
What Is Unschooling?
Unschooling is freedom from school. Now, everyone has different definitions of what unschooling is but here is the way I define it. With unschooling, you do not send your kids to school and you do not create a similar-to-school environment at home. Instead, you let your children lead the way by supporting them in their passions. You get freedom with unschooling. I fell in love with the book Unschooling Rules by Clark Aldrich during our 7-week crazy road trip across the United States. We stumbled upon it at a library in Steam Boat Springs, Colorado where I read this book in a few hours. It was that interesting.
Change Your World
With unschooling, we have very little stress and a whole bunch of fun! When I stopped worrying about what traditional school told me my kids needed to know and started to focus on what they were actually interested in, my world changed and so did theirs.
I was so worried about starting our homeschooling journey that, I delayed it for years because I thought I wouldn’t be capable of teaching them. What I didn’t realize and now do, is that they are more than capable of directing their own education. My job now is to support them in their discoveries and passions.
Instead of teaching my girls what to learn, I show them how to learn. With the internet at our fingertips, it is amazing all the info we have access to. This is the freedom with unschooling I am talking about.
Too often, with traditional schooling, we are forced to learn certain subjects leaving little time to pursue our own passions.
My daughters have many different interests. My middle child, Mia, is passionate about gymnastics. She continues to state that she will be an elite gymnast. I believe her!
My job now is to make sure I provide her with all the resources to make both her dream and passion a reality. This means enrolling her in gymnastics, supporting her in her workouts, and giving her daily encouragement on her dreams.
She researches gymnasts that inspire her and reads about their daily practices and how they got to their elite status. After that, she then adapts those practices in her own life. She is 12-years-old! This is the same child who struggled with depression for years due to bullying in school. As a mother, this killed me but I felt helpless. Choosing to unschool saved her life and it ignited a fire in her I had never seen before.
This same beautiful soul and daughter of mine has a love for everything Harry Potter especially the books. She avoided reading them for the longest time because a teacher once told her that they were too advanced for her!
Can you believe that?
Instead of encouraging her to read, the teacher chose to crush her spirit. Now, thanks to unschooling, she has read the entire series and has chosen to read the series all over again because the books are that good!
The Love Is Real Y’all
Unschooling has brought our little family closer than ever. Gone are the days where we were screaming at each other in frustration over homework. Do you have those days where you and your kiddos are butting heads over homework that has to be done? Let me know right now in the comments if you have ever struggled to try to get your child to understand or do their homework. I spent so many days frustrated over this very thing. I lost precious bonding moments with my children because the time we should have been spending together having fun was spent stressing over useless homework.
A Transformation In My Girls
The anxiety that used to riddle my girls each day before school seems to have disappeared. Instead, they are taking chances, exploring, playing, and asking more questions than ever before.
I practice observing them, and I have to say it was beautiful. Since we started unschooling, I have noticed a newfound freedom in the girls.
A sense of freedom has definitely taken over our little family and I am embracing every moment of it. I truly believe that so many families can benefit from unschooling. I can’t even put in words what unschooling has done for us. All I can say is that we have found freedom with unschooling.