Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Wildschooling Wisdom #1

Listen to your child.  I mean this in two ways.

First, I mean for you to stop and actually listen to what she is saying, give every question and statement full attention to the extent of your ability.  There will always be something that we can distract ourselves with, something that feels like it is more pressing, but if we make that choice then we are also making the choice to communicate to our child or children that there is always something more important than them!  If you have to, put whatever it is that you are doing away, the computer, the dishes, the laundry, and give them 100% in that moment.  Look them in the eyes, see their sweet, trusting face, and really, really hear them.

The other way that we need to listen to our children is through observation and taking in what their behavior and actions are telling us.  If they really struggle with something, let that have meaning to you.  Don't just chalk it up to "they always struggled at math, but we got through it."  If they are struggling it might be because you need to teach them differently.  If they are uncomfortable it might be that they need it read to them so they can hear it instead of reading it on their own.  Be a detective for  your child, your learner, and uncover what is causing the discomfort and experiment with how to sooth it.  This doesn't have to be with just learning.  It can be in relationships, play, food, playgroups or anything else our children do.  We don't have to create a pristine environment of non-stop joy for our children, but if there is consistent discomfort then listen to it and let it show you that something isn't quite right, or that there might just be a better way of doing things.

Happy Homeschooling!

So that's my Wildschooling Wisdom for Wednesday.  Share yours with us, and a link to your blog or site so others can find you!  Anything to do with nature-based parenting and homeschooling will work!!!  I can't wait to see what you have to say.


  1. As you know, Jessica, I don't have kiddos. But I think your sharing can be translated for anyone dealing with people. So often we want the people around us to fit into a box of our designing. They should act this way or get the same things we do...but life doesn't work that way. I think we are all generally doing our best to live a good life. If I can remind myself that those around me are coming from a place of just-doing-their-best, I think life for me and for them would be better. Thanks for sharing!

  2. myvillagewitch.blogspot.com I write about spiritual things and also gardening, canning, etc. I didn't homeschool but did a lot of educating outside the formal classroom. My child is 21 now and on her way. I look forward to connecting with you all.

  3. I've gotta say that you hit the nail on the head with this one. I'd like to add in that homeschooling's greatest advantage is the ability to change the schedule/style/pace to match the child. If "she always had trouble with math but she got through it" then maybe you've gotta put it in terms that he/she connects with better. My kids have to see things in terms of comedy, so many of our lessons involve ridiculous things like giant toilets, an old lady with 400 cats who needs 24 more, and even some bathroom humor thrown in for good measure. If they can't laugh, they don't learn. It took a while to figure that out, but even the subjects that they struggle with are easier when we put it in terms that they enjoy and connect with.