Monday, November 15, 2010
My husband and I live in an urban apartment setting with our sons (even though we dream of a house w/yard) contrary to the idea most people have of homeschooling families. As if only rural settings are conducive to allowing one the freedom to school your children yourself. I work during the day while my husband and the boys seek adventure and then in the evening, my husband ventures out to play his music. It is difficult for him sometimes as the artist in him wants to roam about freely and our sons are still at ages that require attention.
We have suffered some personal setbacks this year, but as a family we try to be honest about each situation and work together without pointing fingers at one another. Our boys are amazing people and have adjusted through all these situations. They have learned a great deal about money during these financially difficult times and have come up with hilarious and surprisingly well thought out ways to make money themselves.
One thing that we have all learned from these experiences is that it is not the amount of money that you have or that you spend, but the amount of love and effort that you put forth that shapes our children into the people they need to become. They are each unique and intelligent. It is our responsibility to give them the keys to the world, teach them respect for themselves and for their fellow beings, and let them know they are loved!
They will find their path...
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
Have a blessed day!
Tuesday, September 28, 2010
I did modify the rules a bit to simplify things by taking out the house/hotel factor, but I left everything else in order to give them a realistic experience. W8 was very precise with how he put his money and properties out in front of him and D7 sorted his money, but stacked his properties. E6 decided he wanted to watch and J4 stacked his money, sorted his properties and enjoyed holding the stack of money in his hand when it was his turn. W8 and D7 quickly picked up the idea of buying properties to receive rent payments when people land on them. J4 was not interested in giving his money away and was very unhappy to find out that he was expected to pay his brothers anything when landing on their properties. He was very intent on buying a property called “The Strawberry Patch” which was a Houston landmark restaurant for many years and I thought it was cute because he wanted it because it had a strawberry on the picture. J4 is a highly determined boy and he did end up with that property. In the end D7 became frustrated with “landing in jail” and left the game and his opportunistic brother E6 jumped into his place.
D7 insisted that if E6 won that it was a shared victory since “he played for most of the game”. There was a time limit placed on this first game, because as the banker, I had no intention of an 8 hour game the first time round. So at the end of our time limit, we added up all their properties and money and the winners turned out to be D7/E6, J4 and W8. W8 was perplexed as to how after spending a great deal of his money on properties, how he could possibly have lost. We talked about how you never know where the dice may have you land and that buying a lot of properties doesn’t necessarily mean that people will land on them.
They came up with a collective idea of creating a board game that was more peaceful. We’ll see what that looks like and I look forward to watching them work together to create it!
Peace & Blessings!
Saturday, September 4, 2010
The "economic downturn" is just another excuse for those who have, to discriminate against those who are trying to emulate their lifestyle. As a one income family, we have found that "affordable housing" is not really affordable and those places that are in our range are usually purposefully crap.
It is times like this when we start to hear suggestions of putting the boys into public school so hubby and I can spend our days working in the grind while our sons are ground up in the system. Sounds great? Not!
As artists and activists, we are painfully aware that fighting the good fight doesn't come with luxury housing and 6 figure incomes, but it builds the kind of people that change their communities and potentially, the world.
That's what I want for my boys. Real world schooling. Socializing with elders and youth to make a difference!
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
We bought a cake and had it for breakfast on Saturday morning to celebrate our new unschool year. W8 and D7 want to focus on science, math and reading while E6 also wants to include history. J4 just reminds us all that he does NOT want to go to school.
Tonight, all 4 boys began working on building a boat out of cardboard/chipboard boxes using staples. Pretty creative buch of pirates! The oldest 2 and I also played Yatzee in between building and they are getting really fast at adding, multiplying and counting in multiples.
I am looking forward to all the learning ahead for them and myself. Hopefully husband and the boys can check out the Not Back to School party on Friday. Enjoy the journey...
Saturday, August 14, 2010
Monday, August 9, 2010
Today the someone that gpt hurt was my 6 year old. Needless to say, I was angry and went down to that playground with my husband and we put the pipes back where they belong. Then I noticed how trash was mixed in with the leaves and upon closer inspection saw glass was mixed in as well. So my 4 boys and 3 neighbor children started cleaning up. Between us, we collected 7 bags of trash (including nails, odd bits of metal, glass of all colors). The kids took ownership and I hope that sense of community becomes instilled with them and it's something that they will practice. I also hope I don't catch anyone messing up all that hard work. It was a joy to know that the kids had a safer space to play in this afternoon!
Saturday, August 7, 2010
Wednesday, August 4, 2010
There is such a negative culture being instilled in our youth and it is a bit frightening to witness. I have heard some very uniformed conversations by teens and tweens and it is unfortunate that they do not have adults that they can talk with about serious issues. The younger children are enamoured by the teens and are taking what they say as gospel. So there have been lots of questions from my crew and I have had to tell the truth...a lot. And I have had conversations with neighboring youth about certain words they use and their origin. It hasn't stopped the words, but hopefully it will sink in. One day.
I do not look forward to sending bright eyed youth back to their public school fate, but I do look forward to the quiet the Fall brings.
Monday, July 19, 2010
Wednesday, June 9, 2010
Tonight while eating dinner, 7yo said he wanted to be president so he could make sure that everyone in the world had food and water. He said the police would carry around food and look for people who were hungry. I told him that it is greater to help people in your own community and the only title he needs is Human. He then went on to say that when he gets his license, he is going to have a van that he can carry food bags and water to hand out to hungry people. 8yo suggested that he should also think about giving away money too.
I looked at my husband and said that it is times like these where I know we are on the right path with exposing the boys to real life. They will be better prepared to be leaders in their communities.
Peace & Blessings to all & good night!
Thursday, June 3, 2010
As non-public schoolers, the subject of school names comes up when you are filling out different forms, newsletters, etc. We have kicked around a lot of things with the boys and I have my personal favorite, "the wildcrafting school of overstanding". Even if everyone decides on a different name, I think I'll stick with this one for the blog.
Every day we should get up, thank the creator, greet the sun and walk with positive intentions. This can be easier said than done, but must be a necessary step in our personal development. We have been talking to the boys about speaking with intention as the spoken word is powerful. You can't take back words once they have left your lips no matter how much you may wish you could. Rastafarians speak Ital and it is a perfect example of trying to leave negative words behind with an "overstanding" of a situation as opposed to an understanding. So I must think before I speak and help teach the boys to do the same.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
I will help the oldest two get ready and then ask them to help the younger two while myself and the big man get it together. Mostly foolproof plan, but today we just couldn't move faster than snails on vacation. Oh well...
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Monday, May 24, 2010
A simple conversation with my 4 year old about him treating himself better so he can be around for a long time, brought up the subject of death and dying. So now I have a 7yo who is crying and telling me about his happiest memory of cooking while clinging to me; a 6yo who is crying and hugs me while whispering he doesn't want "you and Daddy to die" and then the 4yo old looks up at me with tears pouring down his face saying, "if you die, we wouldn't have a mommy anymore".
Try not crying through all that!!!
Not just because it was sad, but that they are processing humanity.
Of course 8yo has to put it all back into perspective as he lets me know that he will cry when I die, but that's not right now and that his brothers are probably crying because they are picturing what I will look like dead. I quietly whisper to him with a hug, that he should keep that nugget of info to himself because I didn't think his brothers had even thought of that and that might make them cry more. What a day!!!
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Swiss Army Wife has written a wonderful post on the subject that I recommend. http://www.swissarmywife.net/2010/04/unschooling-stephanopoulos-good-morning-america-fail/ and another must read from Lee Stranahan "Unschooling : How "Good Morning, America" Got It All Wrong" http://ow.ly/1AA8H
I confess that I was compelled to leave a comment on the GMA website as well (kjrp68).
I am just happy that was not my family under the microscope as life has been difficult enough. I do take strength from the fact that the judge made it clear to the folks living in the house we are planning on buying that they must be out by tomorrow...or else. Our unschooling lifestyle has been under major scrutiny by all our relatives that we have stayed with (on both sides of our families). It is always hard to "pretend" to fit into the boxes others live in. BUT not much longer!!! We will be able to have our OWN HOME BASE with which to learn and live and love life! Can't wait!!!
Monday, March 1, 2010
It is an experience that will change your life!