3 February 2015
That time we tried school...
A few weeks ago, Little Owlet hit that stage… The one where an Owlet gets curious about what most other kids her age are up to. We've been here before, but all the same it surprised us. All the cartoons and kids shows she watches online begin talking about how awesome school is, to prepare the back to school crew, and an Owlet who is Little Owlets's age wonders what it means to fit in.
She began by asking Huz and I what it was like to go to school. And then she said she'd like to know what it feels like. She wanted to try it. Just for a day. So we asked her what it was she wanted to find out about… and together, we hatched a plan. Little Owlet has a rather vivid imagination, so pretending our home was a school was an easy compromise.
We ordered a uniform in her colour of choice, knee-hi socks and black shoes to match. We worked out all the things an Owlet her age might learn in a schoolish kind of setting. And then we tweaked it a bit. We picked out a day, marked in the calendar, and woke up to a whole new schoolish world that day.
Lunches and backpacks at the ready, three Owlets assembled at our dining table at 9am one Monday to attend Mrs Carter's School for Particularly Wise Owlets. We structured our day around the school bell (thanks iPhone), and set to work with me as the teacher, my students eager to learn. Hands were raised when questions needed answering, a toilet pass was given when the toilet was needed. Recess and lunch were taken outside and playing with friends had to wait until the bell. Although, apparently, I wasn't as strict as they'd have like, and it was a fairly simplistic representation of a school situation, I'd say they were fairly convinced.
The Owlets found the day interesting and hilarious, boring and exhausting. As did I. We didn't work at their usual pace and it was odd for them to have to persist with some things and give others up before they were finished. We covered maths, LOTE (French and Japanese all at once!), music, geography, english and art… and I'm fairly sure we approached them in more uschooly ways than we first intended, but old habits are heard to break!
By the end of the day, we had a story to share with Huz and Little Owlet had determined that school was no longer something she was curious about. She did still like the uniform though… with a few minor alterations - daisy leggings for climbing trees, long sleeves for keeping the sun off and bare feet for feeling comfortable and free. And so we began with our year accordingly.
Happy new school year to our pals getting back to it and happy rambly days to our unschooly-type friends. Here's to finding what works, trying new things and learning together. xo