What programme?

What programme do you use for ..(insert your topic or subject or curriculum area here)?

 We don’t.

 And do you know why?

 It seems so easy to pick a book or a curriculum that allegedly solve the “troubles” of how to teach x.

 But it’s not.

 There is no easy way, no perfect book.

 Nothing can replace the attention of a parent or adult, responding to a child and his interests, sharing the world and their life and interests, using books and movies and activities and experiences and most of all discussion to teach.

 No curriculum can replace these kind of learning opportunities.

 So use the curriculum if we wish, but use it as an adjunct to real life and real learning, to everything else we do, directed or undirected and natural.

 In my experience, what programme works is the programme of family and life and resources around us.

With lots and lots of time.

 And lots and lots of talking.


If I could tell a new homeschool mum one thing…

If I could tell a new homeschool mum one thing, it would be… to give it ( whatever it is) Time.

Time. The biggest secret in homeschooling/unschooling.

Time for a child to mature, so that the boy who hates writing at age six
(“why do I have to do this”) is just given time to mature, no pressure to write, just sharing books together until one day he finds his voice and writes and blogs.

Time for the shared experiences to be shared, to shape the child, to allow him to explore, think, play, be a child…so that he chooses, as a teen, to study ancient languages at a university winter school and needs no nagging about homework. He has had time to find out what he likes and how he learns.

Time to spend with family and friends, exploring persona (today it’s Batman, tomorrow it is a Roman soldier), learning how to interact with others, to control temper, to think of others, to learn about self.

Time to read and read together without school schedules and have-tos.

Time for that stubborn toddler to grow into a self disciplined, determined young man. Time for that  very sensitive child to grow into a young man who thinks deeply and spiritually.

Time to cook, to do crafts, to play games, to climb trees, to visit and re-visit museums and libraries, to learn.

And time for mum to realise that things that seem major and  crisis making and overwhelming now will pass.

Time has been my homeschooling secret. Regardless of circumstances and living situations, I have learned to give myself and my kids time.