I was talking with hubby last night about how we need to be careful with our youngest now that she is the only child at home. When the teen lived here we had two children to deal with. Our teen is a fabulous child but we had growing pains working with her on rules, responsibilities and growing up. You know, normal teen stuff. Now that only the youngest lives here, hubby worries too much about her wild schemes and crazy ideas that he's sure makes the neighbors think we're crazy (she's built 2 'shanties' in the back yard, complete with lighting.! lol Yesterday I caught her in jammies, with silk scarves tied around her waist and practicing ninja moves out by the garden, waving a thin white plastic pole like she was Kung Fu Panda!) Up until now she's had more freedom to just be her while we were navigating ourselves through teenager landmines. But now, we notice everything.
I told him we had to just allow her to be her, to make mistakes, within reason (no, you can't play with fire from the firepit!) I briefly discussed unschooling with him and what it could look like. I know I'm not brave enough (or haven't been up to this point) but I can see that she would thrive at it. She's lazy sometimes but she really is a curious soul. Hubby worried that children who were allowed to learn this way would be ignorant of the things that don't interest them. This stopped me in my tracks. Is this true? Does it matter? Do we have to know all about everything if it doesn't interest us? Would it be a crime if she never learned who the dictator of China was or how to dissect a frog? Even today hubby asks if I knew what a Rube Goldberg machine was? I replied no, he explained ihews like the mousetrap game. One thing leads to another in succession. I don't think my life has been hindered not knowing the name of those machines! Dd has other interests. Heck the child is currently listening her way through a COLLEGE Ancient Egypt lecture series, FOR FUN!!! She knows more about Egypt, Greek and Norse Myths and American History (from listening to History of Us by Joy Hakim) then I'll ever know and I graduated from college!
I don't think school has to be a series of boring forced subjects that we don't care about and won't ever remember anyway. This is one of the reasons we homeschool so we can study what we like, when we like. But I do find myself picking up more textbooks as we move into more Jr. High and I already see a lot of sighing and sadness associated with forced boring learning. I keep rethinking my choices and decision to not unschool. I wouldn't really be scarring her for life would I be??
Just to share: Read this article on Seth Godin and Homeschooling. Very enlightening. So glad I'm on the homeschooling team.