The other day a comment was made to me that made me realize some people still don’t get what we’re doing. Or maybe they do get it and don’t approve, I don’t really know. It was innocent enough and I don’t think there was any bad intent behind the comment but still, it gave me pause. The boys were asked if school was getting ready to start back up again to which Iain responded,”I’m homeschooled.”
“Well, yes, I know that but don’t you still have to get out your books?” Ok, at this point I’m thinking, Really?? Don’t you know we don’t do school-at-home? Iain left the room and then the comment directed at me was, “Someone I know works at a private school and they said that homeschoolers often come in behind everyone else.”
Ok, I’m not going to lie. For some reason the comment just rubbed me the wrong way. I’m not holding my boys to some arbitrary standard established by someone else. At this point it’s not necessary for them to learn facts that have no relevance to their lives. Yes, IF they went back to school it’s possible that they would be behind in some areas but even kids in school are behind in something. It just makes me feel tired. I didn’t bother to explain my feelings on the philosophy of unschooling because what’s the point? If the message hasn’t been heard by now then another explanation isn’t going to hammer the point home. I just get exhausted by the “helpful” comments some people make. At this point I choose not to react to them but when the comments start coming in Iain and Ryan’s presence I will respond and said response may surprise some folks. Unschooling is not about using some kind of measurable guideline to gauge their intelligence. It’s about celebrating the natural learning process and all the benefits that branch off from it.
This weekend there’s going to be an article in our local paper about unschooling and we were interviewed for it a couple of months ago. I’m a little nervous about it because, as evidenced by the above story, unschooling is not an easy concept for people to grasp. People are offended when you go against the norm because they interpret it as a judgement of what they’re doing or what they’ve done. I’m curious about what the reaction of the community at large is going to be. When the article comes out, I will post a link to it here so anyone may read it.
This has been a very long week for some reason and I will be glad when the weekend rolls around!