Today would have been this little girl’s first day at school, if we hadn’t discovered the joy of Unschooling. Today could have been SO different! Filled with anxiety and nerves and rushing and tears. But today was so far removed from that. Today was peaceful and fun. What does the ‘first day of school’ look like for an almost 5 year old Unschooler? Like this…
They started the morning outside, with a collaborative canvas painting. They painted and told stories and planned what else they would do with the canvas. Apparently it’s not finished and they’ll be adding different things every day.
Crossing yesterday off the calendar. I was reminded of how much of their education is comprised of conversations! Crossing off the day lead to an explanation of how to read the calendar, days, months, years, new moons and full moons. They wanted to know about the picture so we talked about the Great Barrier Reef and how big it was. They wondered what it would be like to swim there and if you could swim with dolphins. Then they told me what they know about dolphins, how they hunt, their skeletons, and what their teeth are like. All this just from crossing off a day!
Miss 4 then asked if we could go to the park.
Me: Why do you want to go to the park?
Her: I want to ride my scooter there. We don’t have many paths here but there’s lots there and we can go wherever we like. We can choose wherever we go and where to turn. When I can just go wherever I choose I just feel free.
I thought that was the perfect example of how I want her to feel and why I chose not to send her to school. I want her to be free. So, to the park we went.
Watching a lizard jump across the rocks.
Sisterly chats and plans. How lucky they are not to be separated for most of their days. These two, they love each other fiercely, and it is my pleasure to give them the gift of a childhood spent in each other’s company.
Nature is the most perfect place for children to play. I love watching their ideas and how the environment influences their play. Today they built a Fairy house. This was tricky and required a lot of problem solving but they worked out a way to do it together.
Home for refreshing snacks because the weather was HOT today.
While the little girls napped they decided to get out their Little Passports suitcase and played with some of the things in there. Here they’re doing some Aboriginal Dreamtime symbol scratch art.
Putting together a 3D model of Big Ben all by themselves. I was busy getting the littlest to sleep.
Noticing these flags side by side Miss 6 said to me ‘I can see that England came to Australia because look, their flag is on ours’. Then there was a conversation about how that happened and how they thought they ‘discovered’ Australia, and how the Indigenous people were already here and how they were treated.
Miss 4 loves to cook and had asked if she could make something today, so when I was ready to make the pasta sauce to use for dinner later I asked if she wanted to help.
Reading books is something we make time for every day.
They discovered there were bees in the herb garden and told me they could see the pollen on their legs, leading me excitedly to come and see.
In the afternoon they painted the fairy house that they had made at the park that morning.
The rest of the day was spent with more painting, imaginary play, cubby building, swinging, trampoline jumping, talking to the neighbour, and being together. It was a normal, simple day, but it was everything.
Tonight they will go to bed whenever their bodies tell them they are tired, because they don’t need to get up in the morning for anyone’s agenda but their own.
Today my 4 year old could have started school. Today, my 4 year old felt FREE.