So in last weeks post I celebrated the success of our deschooling. Even though school is no longer a dirty word for Miss Sky and I now see learning is in everything, that doesn’t mean our relationship has been completely healed. It just means Miss Sky has been “schooled” less than Papa and I have been her parents. In other words even though we may have the unschooling part down we still need to work on the radical part.
I have been posting about my discoveries of becoming a radical unschooler and have to be honest and say the hardest part for me has not been the deschooling, I think because I have always felt in my heart the principles of unschooling, but instead it’s been the journey of standing back and looking at myself as a parent. It’s taking responsibility that I’ve made some bad choices in the past that I am not proud of and realizing I can’t just erase them away and act as if they never happened. Nope there is still healing and trust issues that needs to be worked out and honestly who can blame them. One day I am a complete control freak and the next day I’m allowing them to make more of their own choices. Who wouldn’t be leery of that.
Are we making progress though? Oh yes indeed :).
While getting ready to read the next chapters of The Sea Fairies by L. Frank Baum, Miss Sky asks “do we have to read today?”. I said no of course not but was curious as to why (I mean sometimes I am just not in a reading mood myself). She replied that she really was not getting in with the story and thought it boring.
Okay here we are more than halfway through the book, do I say well maybe if we continue the story it might get better and still finish the book (I mean what does one learn by giving up something because they may find it boring ?) or do I listen to what my child is saying and trust in her reason for it knowing that she can always finish the story at another time whenever “she” wants to? Then I really started thinking about what she could learn by me making her finish the story.
She could learn not to trust in herself when making decisions, that I am “the only one” who knows what is best for her. She could learn that I don’t respect her opinions and maybe lose self-confidence. She could learn to lie to me and tell me what she thinks “I” want to hear. She could learn to stop expressing herself because she knows I wont agree with her anyway. She could learn to dislike reading literature. (Do you know anyone who dislikes reading because they were forced to read something ?)
I decided that not only would it be a lot easier, all the way round, to just stop reading the book but that our relationship was much more important to me than teaching her a lesson.
Life is good friends!