Good heavens but this child is making this stuff easy! Who needs copywork? My child is CONSTANTLY writing!
Why in the world would I force her to write stuff she doesn’t want to when she is writing us letters and writing her own stories and journal entries and even writing her own books! Like nearly every day!! I’m not kidding!
Not only that but she’s taken quite naturally to typing. I credit Toontown for this. She’s obsessed with this game…and she has lots of friends on there now that she talks to daily. So she has to–get this–read, and write and TYPE!!
Even her spelling’s improving because if she spells something wrong, it turns red and won’t let her type it. Plus she’s asking me all the time how to spell things, so she’s getting a lot of practice.
All by her own initiative.
This just is making me think harder about unschooling. Especially since the past 2 Thursdays, I have been listening to some excellent radio shows on unschooling. Gena Kirby has a wonderful radio show called “Progressive Parenting” (click on “about” and choose “radio show” from the popup menu) that covers all sorts of parenting topics that are often outside the mainstream. I’ve been in contact with Gena since a friend of mine met her when she was planning to open her store “Mommy Matters” (it’s since been closed and is now only online). We have remained in contact over the years and connected in a variety of ways via our mutual interests and groups and such.
Gena emailed me a couple weeks ago because her guest that was lined up to talk about unschooling fell through and she wanted to know if I had any recommendations. I told her to see if Dayna Martin or Sandra Dodd could do it…figuring Dayna would be available, but Sandra as a backup choice. Dayna is a friend of mine that I met after she appeared on the Dr. Phil show, talking about unschooling…this was back when I was doing weekly chats with Mothering Magazine and they booked Dayna after her Dr. Phil appearance to do an unschooling chat with us. We did the chat and then Dayna and I stayed in touch on the phone and I think she’s just an amazing person. Listening to her recent radio shows with Gena, I am reminded of this and am very eager to reconnect and learn more about unschooling.
I’ve got a strong interest right now in unschooling because of listening to these past 2 week’s radio shows…I even sat down and took notes on one of them today. (I taped them both). It’s really inspiring to me!
I might type up some of what I really liked that they said later…right now it’s getting late.
All this is to say that my daughter is learning so much of her own volition! I LOVE it!
Oh and one last thing…I asked her yesterday what she thinks of learning. She said something like “oh, its ok…but mostly its boring.” I was a bit shocked and then asked her what was boring and she said something like “oh when someone tells me to do this and this…”
I got it. She doesn’t like forced learning anymore than the rest of us do. I got the impression from her that she was referring to my “assignments” that I’ve been trying to enforce with her lately…her “schoolwork” that I have been making her do (although not totally consistently). This was a strong message for me at just the right time. Having the topic of unschooling fresh on my mind…and a firm idea in my mind of what I strongly want for her…the love of learning…I’m determined to figure out a way to make learning fun for her again. Or maybe its just a matter of getting the terminology explained better because she really is learning all the time and she truly does enjoy it for the most part (I can see it in her eyes)…what she has got in her head right now is that learning and schoolwork are what Mommy makes her do that she doesn’t want to. And that’s not what I want for her.
I’m not saying that every single thing she ever learns has to be super fun…but there’s got to be a better way. I am determined to give my children the gift of that passion for learning that I have attained now, as an adult (long after the schools nearly killed it, but I was able to find it again on my own).
I think that maybe I can learn a lot from Dayna in the coming months. I’m excited to talk more to her about it! 🙂