I intended to be an unschooling family from early on, and am delighted to be back to that after a 1.5 year hiatus. However, my 11 year old daughter is nervous about the transition back...how to help? After a long lovely free, rural, unschooled childhood she asked for structured homeschooling after quizzes by relatives gave her panic over her lack of math knowledge. She did about 3 months of k-12.com, total bootcamp nightmare after the novelty of the flashy computerized lessons wore off...Then 1.5 semester of independent Oak meadow curriculum, which at first seemed gentle compared to the teacher-monitored k-12, but more and more seemed like a lot of uninteresting, tedious, irrelevant daily grind. Lots of daily frustration and misery. Her freaking out over all these things in the textbook experts say she needs to learn, and her not feeling attracted to barely any of it. Her really not wanting to do it, but asking me to try and make her/convince her to do it, to avoid that frightening situation of not knowing what others expect her to know.
Obviously, we had to get off of this miserable wheel! She agrees that scrapping the curriculum is a must for her happiness and seems tentatively excited/relieved about unschooling again. But still these fearful questions..."Shouldn't we start the Oak Meadow again? What if I forget everything? How will I learn enough? What will people think...? She is less of a rebel and more of a people pleaser than I wish she was...But then so was I at that age...Any advice for how I should proceed to calm her fears, inspire her about her power to be/do anything she wants without the soul-crushing to-do list that is a state mandated daily grind of boredom? Should I keep the Oak Meadow texts (which I hid away a month ago when we finally, mutually decided it wasn't working) where she can page through them if she wants to? My fear there is that she will be overwhelmed again by the amount of stuff in there that she can't bring herself to care about, but will feel pressured to cram into herself for fear of not keeping up...
She reads huge novels, writes book reviews and advice for fun on her fav website newmoongirls.com, is a rather genius artist, and happily goes to a spanish conversation tutor with me every week--I'm not worried about her learning enough or not--she obviously will! One dubious gift of our 1.5 years k.12/Oak Meadow is she's now mastered all the basic math up to about 6th grade, way more than many adults ever need to use, and we have a few computer games she really likes that she plans to play at to keep those skills alive. But, sometimes lately SHE is worried, will she/can she learn as much as other kids if she just learns for pleasure...? Any inspiring resources/advice for helping me help her be empowered on this topic...? And should I keep schooly/Oak Meadow books put away during this transition of "deschooling," least they add anxiety, or let them be strewn around and possibly enjoyed in a different , no pressure way...?