Why do you want to deschool?
Yesterday, I had such a delightful Deschool class (& coaching conversation) with five homeschool mamas!
I asked these homeschool mamas, “Why do you want to deschool?”
One mama shared how she wants to let loose and follow her child’s rabbit trails more, but also wants to keep a full schedule and developed a routine.
One mama shared that she’s not yet pulled her two kiddos from school but is prepping for that in the fall so she’s learning what she can deschool now.
Another mama shared why she prefers unschooling and how it has served her kiddos for the last 5 years but deschooling is still necessary.
One mama shared how she takes her cues from her 7-year-old son, both in his desire for social activity and also when he’s had enough of formal lessons.
So, we had a chat about…
- staying on track (& if/or why that’s necessary),
- discussing the concept of gaps in an education,
- determining what you want for your child’s education & getting clear on your values,
- recognizing that sometimes we have a hard time clarifying what we want for our child’s education because we’re too concerned about what other people think (thinking through other people’s values for our family),
- following our child’s cues for when they’re “done” with homeschool lessons,
- schooled vs homeschooled socialization,
- lifelong learning and how we can get out of our kids’ way so they can enjoy learning,
- acknowledging that our educational experiences are often the reason we form and fashion our homeschools as we do,
- learning to let go of the role of “teacher” and own that our role as “mother” is also a teacher (not coincidentally),
- addressing our kiddos’ needs and being present with them,
- acknowledging that we have needs too,
- and the benefits deschooling has on our homeschool lives…
What is the schooled mindset that so many homeschoolers want to deschool from?
This is the question that homeschool families have a hard time answering for themselves.
We know that we’re trying to leave a schooled mindset behind, but we don’t always know what it is we’re trying to leave.
In my own experience, (since I was also conventionally schooled and I also brought my kids home after my oldest finished second grade and my second finished kindergarten), I’ve learned the following are some of the things that I had to unlearn or deschool, from my conventional education…
- We assume kids should always be busy and be kept busy.
- That they need to identify in a particular grade.
- We assume kids need teachers to learn stuff.
- We assume learning comes best through lectures, textbooks, and testing.
- We assume kids need to learn certain things at certain times.
- Kids typically are at the same developmental level to receive knowledge bits at similar times.
- We assume we can organize learning and can create systems of learning.
- We assume teachers need to be certified.
- We assume we have to switch from the role of mother to teacher dependent on what we’re discussing.
Do these ideas feel familiar? Why do you want to deschool?
- There are only certain times of the day when kids can learn.
- We assume there are only certain subjects that are considered learning.
- We assume that kids’ emotional connection & attachment can be put on hold for seven hours.
- The most important persons in a child’s life are his/her peers.
- We assume that someone else, a prescribed system, developed by the experts would know better than parents, how to advocate for an education for our children.
- We assume that children wouldn’t know how they should be educated.
- An education has to be pre-planned even for that child, that can’t just happen as they go.
- We assume that there is a certain time in life to learn and there is a certain time in life to produce.
- We assume everyone needs a base knowledge.
- Or we assume there is only one way to get a base knowledge.
- We assume that base knowledge has to be learned in sequence.
- That the base knowledge learned in sequence will be remembered because we tested.
- We assume that because we tested, kids know. Even if we know that they don’t care.
- We assume that imparting anything is a good done for them.
What would you add to this list? Hit reply & let me know. I know we’re as unique as the prints on our fingers…
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