Top 10 Posts for 2015
This year has seemed to go by so fast. If you missed it, here‘s how it went for us. And now I thought I’d write a short post about how 2015 was on the blog! These were the top 10 most viewed posts this year…
(you can click the titles to read the posts)
1. Why I stopped asking my kids to clean up: I’m not sure why this one was so popular but it did seem to be quite confronting to a lot of people! I read many comments from people on facebook who were outraged by the idea of not forcing children to clean. Some flat out refusing to believe I was telling the truth. Sorry to disappoint, but a year later and it’s still working people! Not asking them to clean at all was a temporary experiment to see what would happen and break the cycle of battles over cleaning. But what I found was that when I didn’t demand it and instead modelled it, my kids wanted to be helpful. Whenever I fall back into demanding, it becomes a struggle again. So I go back to modelling and asking for help when I need it. And asking something means they are free to choose the answer. But if I ask genuinely, without threat or demand, and when they are not already busy with something, they are very likely to say yes.
2. Stop Trying to Make Everything Educational: Something I had to get off my chest! I am passionate about children’s right to play, and children learning through play. But that doesn’t mean you take over their play and try to make it look like learning that you are comfortable with. No, play is inherently valuable, whatever kind it is. Whatever they choose to do, that is enough.
3. It’s Not About School: “Homeschooling or unschooling is not about keeping our kids away from all the negatives of school. While that’s an added bonus, for us it’s much more about the whole different lifestyle that we can all have together.”
4. How to Unschool: When I first started homeschooling/unschooling I really wanted to know how to do it and what it looked like. This post is for people at that stage!
5. “I could never homeschool…I need a break from my kids”: A common comment! And a post about why it really is easier than you think!
6. Why We Ditched Bedtime: No forced cleaning, no bedtime. It’s chaos here people! Ha. Not really. We ditched bedtime and let the kids listen to their bodies. And guess what? They go to bed around 8 every night. Hardly unmanageable, yet this post was another that was a bit confronting too.
7. Punishment vs Natural Consequences: We don’t use punitive discipline in our house and this post is about why I think ‘natural consequences’ are far more peaceful and effective.
8. The ‘Calm Down Codeword’: A little tip for those stressful parenting moments! We actually haven’t been using this very often anymore this year! My little 3 year old turned 4 and with that change came a lot more calm. Phew!
9. What a 6 Year Old Should Know: What I think is important for my 6 year old to know. Hint: not curriculum.
10. What if They Spend Their Whole Childhood Playing?: Lots of people seem to have this fear. What if you unschool and they just spend their whole childhood playing? Well it might just be the most awesome childhood ever.
I hope you’ve enjoyed reading this year! Thank you so much for being here. I love to share with you all and I have about a billion ideas for posts for next year. But I’d love to know, what kind of posts do you enjoy? What would you like to see in 2016? More thoughts on unschooling? Parenting? What our days look like? Learning experiences? Let me know!
Thanks for all the wonderful posts you have shared. I’ve thought about your question, and I would like to know more about what your days look like? How you act as a facilitator. How often do you stay home and how often to you meet up with familiar kids? Does it become too busy with 4 children and especially having a young baby?
We are embarking on our home educating journey (I think- I keep flip flopping on whether or not I want to send our 4 1/2 yo to kinder). I mostly worry about being able to provide them the experiences and materials they need. As well as creating a community for them. It feels overwhelming and then I think it goes into the ‘too hard basket’ and I think maybe we do kinder. Sigh. I don’t know.
Anyway, I would love to see what your days look like, both good and bad.
Writing all those ideas down, thank you!
Also, you might like this post from a friend of mine: http://athoughtfullife.com/2014/08/19/trying-kindy-before-homeschooling/
Thankyou Sara. I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog this year & have really appreciated the time you have put into it. It is so comforting to find people who are on the same page. As for next year, i think my favourite posts are the ones that show glimpses into the everyday life of unschoolers. But as I mentioned, I enjoyed reading it all, so whatever you post will be great. Many blessings to you and your family for the coming year. I am sure it will amazing, as will ours be! Xx
Thank you Miranda!!!!
Sara, I just wanted to thank you taking the time to do this blog. I came across your blog this past year, and I wanted you to know that you have inspired me with your “respectful parenting.” Your posts have really gotten me thinking about how I can pause during a challenging moment, think about what is going on in my child’s head, and work with my child to resolve the problem through talk and respect, instead of quickly doling out a punishment or reprimand. You have also helped me to look at situations more through a child’s eye and to not put my adult demands or restrictions upon it. For example, your recent post on decorating the Christmas tree absolutely transformed our holiday decorating this year and made for a much more pleasant and memorable time! Thank you for inspiring me and others to strive for more peaceful and respectful homes for our little ones. I look forward to another year of reading your blog!
That makes me so happy!!!! Thank you so much for sharing that with me xx
Thanks for your blog Sarah, it is one of my favourites out there on the entire world wide web! 🙂 I found your post on bedtimes most challenging for me personally this year, that’s something that I had never considered not having! To be honest I would say we have more of a ‘bed guideline’ than a strict bedtime, we are definitely a bit flexible – but I find it useful to let my son know that it might be time to start getting ready for his bath now if he wants to fit that and a story in before he gets too tired…but it was definitely food for thought. I would love an update / further thoughts on that. I would also really like a post about eating habits in your family. I imagine you don’t ‘make’ your children sit down at mealtimes if they don’t want to, but doesn’t that get complicated with 5 people at home who might want to eat at different times, and presumably not all old enough to prepare everything for themselves?? So I would love your thoughts on that. And making sure they are still getting a healthy balance of course….thank you!
Thank you Lois!
Having no bedtime is still working out really well! They usually choose to go to bed around 8. There’s been a handful of times they’ve stayed up later when they were busy with something or we had people visiting. Other than that they are always in bed at around the same time.
I have a post on eating here: https://happinessishereblog.com/2015/02/encouraging-good-eating-habits-respectfully/ 🙂