I ´ve been lying awake half the night thinking about this thread! So interesting!
And I just wanted to say, Greenlee, that I love the descriptions of your kids on your website. Beautiful!
Arriving at radical unschooling for us has been a kind of fusion/coming-together of our ideas on parenting, living, and learning as well as our values and ethics on life in general. It´s been an organic learning curve - in the very beginning schooling/unschooling didn´t even figure into the picture.
It was all about the individual my ds was. And giving him the freedom to nurse when he wanted, sleep when he wanted, cuddle when he wanted, play when he wanted etc.
Imo it doesn´t really change much. Except, now things are more two-way, rather than one-way because he is older.
Just to make it easy, I will leave dh out of the equation for now because he is at work the whole day 5 days a week.
Kathrine, I think you explain the two-way thing very well.
Sometimes I have this conversation with my ds about who wants to do what, and how we can accomplish it.
I tell him that we share our lives. And that what I want or need to do is equally important to what he wants to do. But I want to show him by example how to be flexible and understanding of other people´s wants and needs by being exactly that
for him but without losing track of what I need. I mean sometimes I NEED to go to the supermarket, sometimes I need to work and it´s not an option with him staying with someone else or me going by myself.
Our lives are so closely intertwined that our needs and wants overlap - but we are still separate individuals.
I see our lives kind of as one box but with 2 other individual boxes inside. The inside boxes have perforated walls and information, respect and love ++ seeps through and goes both ways.
It´s my job though to facilitate as much as possible, and be flexible. And I see that coming back to me again and again.
(Dh puts his perforated individual box in the big one when he comes home at 6 pm.
Sometimes I have to do work when ds wants to do something that takes us out of the house. Mostly we will find a solution where we just do a short version of what he wants before I work. But sometimes I have to work immediately and 9 times out of 10 he is fine with that. But it´s never without explaining and hearing.
I don´t know if I am rambling...
The tv-thing. We made a conscious decision not to introduce tv to ds when he was young. We had a tv, but we only watched when he was sleeping. He just wasn´t very interested in finding out about it either. He did the usual stuff with the remote, turn on off, the buttons, but that was it.
The music system was another matter. We play music all the time.
Even when he got older, he just wasn´t interested. I never said "you can´t" - he was just too busy playing and making stuff to care.
Then we went to India when he was around 4.5 and he was really into animals. I mean big-time. He WAS an antelope. He had antelope language that I had to decipher when ordering in restaurants - oh there were many really interesting and fun aspects to this phase.
But this was when we introduced tv. Animal planet and national geographic.
And I see that as strewing, sharing, suggesting something just as I would with anything else today.
He loved it. Watched a lot. But he would just as happily say, enough, turn it off and go do something else.
Oh...I feel my train of thought has been interrupted...and possibly totally sidetracked. Ds is asking for breakfast. I think I have to return to this thread afterwards.
So many wise mamas here - I am in awe of all of you - an inspiration!