I’ve been homeschooling for quite a while now and it’s a big portion of what I do and why I do it so I guess I should talk a little about it. I should add at the start of this blog post that I’m based in the UK and the term ‘home educating’ is preferred. For me personally I still naturally say I’m a homeschooler but something to be aware of as the term contains ‘schooling’ and that does not sit well with some I have found!
Homeschooling is like Marmite when you tell random strangers on the bus, in the supermarket que, at the park that you ‘do it’.
To some you may as well tell them you are the leader of a cult that sacrifices your neighbours cats on the third Friday of every month in the name of the Lioness of Catdom.
Others say how lucky I am. Lucky you get cheap holidays (out of term time), lucky you don’t have to buy expensive uniforms, so lucky you don’t have to sit in school traffic (sadly all only partly true for me as my 13 year old still attends ‘regular’ school).
When I initially ‘fell’ into homeschooling I stumbled upon this massive diverse umbrella of people that had all sorts of ideas and philosophies about how they were applying homeschooling.
I admit when my teenage son began, that is officially deregistered from the school roll that I had visions of a two foot pile of text books ready and waiting each morning for him at the kitchen table to begin the days GCSE coursework.
I think it took me a couple months to accept this was not our path. During this time I had read, I had queried (on amazing responsive forums) and I had torn my fucking hair out asking myself had I made a decision that would ruin my sons life.
Slowly ‘unschooling’ spoke to me and the more I read the more I realised that deschooling was a must. In basic terms my son was institutionalised by years in the school system and I needed to almost leave him be so that he could reprogramme and unwind away from the notion that learning is forced and time and schedule is your slave master!
The most profound aspect of my self learning at this period in our lives was not in fact regarding my son; in fact it was about me…
It dawned on me I needed to deschool, and so it began!
(to be continued)