3 May 2010

unschool monday :: trust

Every now and then I catch myself in a moment. We've been travelling along just fine. Hanging out with friends, getting out, looking at stuff... or pottering around home doing our thing. Then the doubt creeps in. I might be on the phone to someone describing our day... "Oh, we went into town and did some shopping, stopped for morning tea. Then we came home and had lunch and the girls have been playing in the garden all afternoon..." Doesn't sound very educational. It sounds like fun, but what have they learned?!! I'm responsible for making sure they end up well rounded and knowledgeable about stuff and we went shopping?!! Then I think some more. What I forgot about was the conversation in the car on the way to drop Huz off this morning, about the moon, stars and sun. About how light travels and how we explained the concept of light years to big owlet. I forgot how her eyes expanded when she thought about looking back in time when she looks at the stars at night. She got it. Really understood it and will probably be processing that one for a while to come!! I also forgot about the counting money, multiplication to work out how many candles were in the box, fractions of a sandwich, the obligatory letter to the faeries and the craft the owlets concocted after they had played in the garden with big owlet's best friend. Not only that, their games are so involved they are actually long winded dramatic sagas which can go on for days!! Ok, so where's that checklist in my head... Literacy : check. Numeracy : check. Science : check. Creativity and self expression : check. Got that one in spades. Physical stuff? Ballet class and walking all over town... check! Socialisation : check. So really it was a well rounded day. We covered loads. The owlets never stop talking or asking questions and as long as I never stop answering them, we are fine. Phew! It seems I have a little more deschooling to do...

It comes down to trust. Trusting that they have an inbuilt sense of what they need to learn. Also a trust that I can recognise and help them access what they need. Trust that little owlet's lines on paper and occasional circles will lead to words one day. They will. Also a trust that allowing free thought, creativity and self expression will keep that spark for learning alive and set them on the way to a lifelong passion for the pursuit of knowledge. How can it not?


Some bits and pieces on trust and creativity that may interest you...

TED Talks - Sir Ken Robinson SaysSchools Kill Creativity
How do Unschooling Parents Know their Children are Learning? - By Jan Hunt
You Have to Trust that the Child will Learn - By Rosalind Rossi
Deschooling a Parent: Learning to Trust - By Jan Hunt


  1. I agree - and I find too that the doubts mainly creep in when I'm talking to someone else. Its hard because its such a long term thing. You don't see the day-to-day checklist unless you make it yourself.

    It's all good though :)

  2. I woke up this morning with no trust, I've been slowly coming back to trust and then I read your post. Are you reading my mind?

    Thank you once again for your quiet, inspirational words of sanity and beauty.


Share your thoughts...