In 2005 I created An Unschooling Life, a blog detailing our unschooling experience after adopting our three children. Over time, An Unschooling Life became a hub for unschooling support and advice. The blog has been featured in print and digital media and was home to the popular Unschooling Carnival. I’m in the process of updating and moving all the posts to this blog where they will be housed under the An Unschooling Life section. This post was originally published on May 20, 2007.
I’ve been a homeschooling mama since 2004. I’ve made some “mistakes” along the way, but I always tried to look at them as a learning experience. Getting advice and ideas from other homeschooling moms has been tremendously helpful and I wanted to pass along my five best homeschooling tips with you!
1. Give yourself some time to deschool
Letting go of preconceived notions about school and learning is a gift you can give yourself and your children. My own deschooling is a work in progress and the more I see unschooling first hand, the more I question what I once thought about education and learning.
2. Expect a period of deschooling from your children
It’s been said that one month per year of school is common. As I said in a previous post about deschooling, “your child has probably their natural desire to learn squashed and will need time to recover from that. With a parent’s help, they can gain back most, if not all of what they lost and begin to see the world as a place where learning is enjoyable, and all around us”.
3. Let your children feel your energy and passion for life
Light a fire for learning in yourself and let it burn bright so they see it! What are your interests? Is there something you’ve always wanted to learn? Do It! Let them see YOU learning and living life to the fullest. Be curious. Be interested in life.
4. Don’t make the mistake of duplicating at home, what you didn’t like about school
Sometimes we just automatically repeat the same patterns, without even thinking about it, just because it’s all we know, it’s what we’re used to or it’s what we’ve always done. Replace school with a full and interesting life. The public school system can not compete with that. They can’t even come close.
5. Don’t make cookies to teach math.
Make cookies because they taste good. 🙂