Tuesday, October 16, 2007

They'll Do Nothing

When I keep track of my children's doings, like today, most times I am astounded.
That's not to say that there is anything extraordinary or outstanding about my children or our/their days. I really don't feel that there is. I am sure the same goings on will/would be happening in homes everywhere - should the children be given the opportunity.

My bemusement comes from hearing about folks saying or thinking "my children wouldn't do anything if I didn't make them."
I can without a doubt in my heart say (should I ever meet one in real life) that You Are Wrong.

None of our activities I say, I say none of them (in a Foghorn Leghorn voice) are coerced by me.
Yesterday we looked through some binders that I have downstairs (from my former life as a potential homeschooler) to see if we could find any interesting seasonal crafts or projects. Trev chose today's ghosts and when I also offered that we could make skeletons out of pasta and wooden pieces, he wanted to do that, as well.
The children chose them.
Maddie drug up the engines into the kitchen - but wanted me to go down and get the "hill". We ended up setting up the track downstairs.
Mad got out the dominoes.
All of it.
They chose all of it.

I've said before that to some it will look like Just Playing. To outsiders, that is. I think that unschooloers know better.
I don't have the head or heart to pick apart everything we do and label and divide it into "this is good for this" categories. It doesn't interest me, and I don't have the desire to defend our learning and my children's development.
I will say, that though it may appear to be Just Playing, that I fully expect that my son will not be content with the very same things that he is interested in today for ever after.
Why would his development be arrested all of a sudden?
Why would he just choose to stop discovering and exploring and making sense of his world?
I am thinking (being his mother and seeing him in action every day) that he won't.
As he matures, so will his tastes.

Their discoveries and games and imaginations are perfectly appropriate for the young beings they are today.

I don't tell them how to spend their time, though once in a while I'll offer something up, something that I'd like to share with them. If they don't want to, they'll say "no thanks". Or "maybe later". Or "not right now, I'm busy."
They know their days and their learning and their lives are best chosen by themselves.

I may from time to time label something in olm's categories as "learning" - but most of the "Learning" posts are just living, and certainly all of the "Living" posts are really learning.
You can't have one without the other, and it really isn't necessary to fret and frown so over coercing something so magical as living - it comes automatically with learning and laughter and love.
It just does.
If you let it.

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