This is Part 2 of a 3 part series…you can also read Part 1 and Part 3. Maybe you thought about what schools are supposed to teach and how well they say they’re doing. Maybe the thought crossed your mind that anyone might do a better job. Maybe you might do a better job.
A few weeks ago, my friend Susan at Home Hum posted a lovely quote by John Holt that gives us lots to think about just now. listen:
First of all, parents have to like their children, enjoy their company, their physical presence, their energy, foolishness, and passion. They have to enjoy all their talk and questions, and enjoy equally trying to answer those questions. They have to think of their children as friends, indeed very close friends, have to feel happier when they are near and miss them when they are away.
They have to trust them as people, respect their fragile dignity, treat them with courtesy, take them seriously. They have to feel in their own hearts some of their children’s wonder, curiosity and excitement about the world.
And they have to have enough confidence in themselves, skepticism about experts, and willingness to be different from most people, to take on themselves the responsibility for their children’s learning.
Maybe these few things are falling into place: you enjoy your children, you have time and space carved out. But how would you ever begin? Lori from Project Based Homeschooling has thoughtfully entertained what it might mean to begin. She is an excellent writer and thinker, a woman dedicated to thoughtfully engaging with her sons as they do the work that is important to them. At the Camp Creep Blog, she often hosts open threads where she offers a compelling quote and then readers are free to ask questions and ponder and muse. And the best part is that Lori brings all of her creativity and experience (her wisdom, really) to answer questions, to tell how it’s worked in her life. She’s a treasure.
So that’s a beginning for our hearts and heads, the thinking work. Tomorrow i’ll post some beginning steps that we have taken for our hands, the doing work.