Sunday, June 4, 2023

Moment of sweetness

"Everything you do now, when your kids are young, matters. All the little kindnesses matter, every little moment of sweetness between you, every time you choose to be thoughtful of the smallest things."
—Deb Lewis
photo by Sandra Dodd

Saturday, June 3, 2023

Power and worth

"What creates power and worth is taking single, conscious steps toward being the kind of person one would like to be. Making better choices."

Marta Venturini quoted me, on Facebook, in June 2011, and I can't find the quote elsewhere, to link to. It might've been on a recording or in a chat that was never published, maybe.

What's most interesting to me is that yesterday's post here was me (in 2009) discouraging someone from a focus on "power" (It's not about power), and the day before that was about things being "worthwhile." (Is it worthwhile?)

Here and there, over the years, I have reminded parents to avoid situations in which a child feels powerless. Life has realities, and we don't always have choices. Parents should avoid casual neglect of providing options for unschooled kids at home. You probably have the power to do that.

Thoughtful and sweet
photo by Cátia Maciel

Friday, June 2, 2023

It's not about power

Once upon a time, a newer but enthusiastic unschooler came to a discussion explaining the "we" (all of us) should agree that unschooling was about power—power over oneself, and the power to decide what to learn and when (and more dramatic power-based rhetoric).

Some of my response is below, and near the photo credit is a link to the full post.
We don't talk about power here much, but we have given our children a life of choices. It's not "power," it's rational thinking, considering all sorts of factors and preferences. They don't need power over themselves. They need to BE themselves.

"The power to decide what to learn" makes a pretzel of the straight line between experience and knowing.

My children don't "decide what to learn, how to learn, and when to learn it." They learn all the time. They learn from dreams, from eating, from walking, from singing, from conversations, from watching plants grow and storms roll. They learn from movies, books, websites, and asking questions.

Power over oneself, unschooling and "politics"
photo by Amy Milstein

Thursday, June 1, 2023

Is it worthwhile?

The only things that should be finished are those things that seem worthwhile to do.

When I'm reading a book, I decide by the moment whether to keep reading or to stop. Even writing this post, I could easily click out of it and not finish, or I could finish it and decide not to post it. Choices, choices, choices.
photo by Luna Elizabeth Short

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

Winding down and transitioning

By Meredith, at the end of a longer list of ideas for indoor play for children:

Party games like blind-mans-bluff and pin-the-tail can be played easily at home with one or two kids. Get a book of party games, or look some up on the web.

Wind down by transitioning to something else, rather than just "that's enough". A snack makes a good transition, or switch to video games or a movie.
—Meredith Novak

Also, there are newer ideas there, about video games that require indoor physicality. It might be a good page to revisit.
photo by Kathryn Robles

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Change the world

"When I stopped seeing my daughter as adversarial it changed the world for us."
—Joanna Murphy
photo by Marty Dodd

Monday, May 29, 2023

Rich lives, in the world

Unschoolers need to be actively involved in things that bring their children into the world, and the world into their children.

The best unschoolers are doing more with and for their children than school-at-home families are. Unschooling parents need to understand MORE about how learning works and keep their family lives rich.
photo by Cátia Maciel