What our Unschooling Looks Like

Most of you that know me, know that we’ve been Homeschooling forever. Actually, I’m on the tail end of this wonderful adventure…having one college grad & an upcoming college senior & sophomore this fall. That leaves with me with just two at home….an upcoming high school senior & sophomre. We have grown & morphed so much over these past almost 20 years now. I went from doing school at home to where we are now with what alot of folks would label as Unschooling……but even that title still bothers me because it has the feeling of following a specific curriculm in a specific time frame….just very relaxed. I gave in for a long time….just because it was easier….to say, ‘yes, we’re done with school for the summer.’ Or, ‘yes, we will be starting back in August after I get my college kids settled in.’ But honestly, that’s NOT the case. We don’t put the books aside & quit learning for these summer months. We’ve been learning TONS these past few months. I decided that I wanted to just TRY & keep a little list scribbled down of the learning that takes place around here at any given time & I want to try & just touch a little on what we’ve been learning this summer.

*We did a quick study of blood types–this came about by a comment Ashley made about blood types that she had learned in her Biology class this past semester. And the fact that Jon had given blood twice at school & received a card from the American Red Cross stating his blood type as A+.

*Golf is our PE of choice these days. Having a membership at Winton Country Club so the boys can play as much as they want this year. Plus signing Michael up for lessons with the golf pro there at Winton. And he’s already played in his first ever golf tournament last week at Poplar Grove in Amherst. He scored right up there with the other two boys he played with which were both on the golf teams at their respective high schools. Besides tournaments scheduled for the rest of the summer, we’re going to see about Golf Camp at Liberty University in July. Best field trip ever….Michael & Clay just got back from two days in Pinehurst, NC watching the pros at the U.S. Open.

*Alli’s new musical passion is a band called Rend Collective– a Northern Irish Christian folk/rock band. She loves listening to & learning to play their music. I’m sure we’ll be right there ringing in the new year at Winterfest as I just found out yesterday that they will be there this year. She also loves the cool musical instrument they play called the Jingling Johnny –she’s hoping she can enlist the help of her brother & the two them can actually build their own Jingling Johnny.

*We’ve learned about lentils since Ashley’s been home. She helps us with our nutrition as she eats a vegetarian diet. She even did Vegan for one week. She has lots of different smoothie/juice recipes & makes them & gets us to taste them. She’s put in her request for a juicer as her graduation present.

*Also thanks to Ashley, we learned about Agave Nectar & succulant plants. One of the boys even pointed out that they thought succulant meant that something was delicious—-which I said was very true—-thus the difference between succulant the noun & succulant the adjective.

*After Clay’s work trip to Hershey, PA–we did some study of the Amish people. Old order Amish & Mennonites too.

*We’ve had several studying Driver’s Ed here lately. Jon has put in many hours of driving practice since coming home from school & is now the proud owner of a VA driver’s license. Ashley still needs to get her actual license–Jon went first because he needed it for work. Michael & Alli both are studying the manual now.

*Jon is working at Frito Lay this summer & has spent three weeks training to be a packer there. This past week was his first real shift. Lots of learning involved there.

*watching behind the scenes & the making of Titanic.

*Ashley read to us about the huge tortoise at the Pittsburgh Zoo. We learned how big they can grow, how much they weigh & how long they live,etc.

*Alli was really fascinated with the weather we were having here last week. Lots of thunderstorms & even a tornado warning here one afternoon. So, she googled about tornadoes that might happen here in VA as opposed to ones that happen out in the midwest.

*Alli is doing what I like to call her own little ‘mission’s trip’/community service project this week. She is helping out at Vacation Bible School at Thomas Road this week. Since I wouldn’t be able to be there each night, she is staying with Maw this week & doing VBS with Sarah, Ella & their kids. I love that the teen-agers are eager to help & be volunteers. Alli & Cori are helping out each night in the craft room with the preschoolers & having a blast from what I can tell.


So, there ya have it. Just the the high points from my little scribbled notes with just SOME of what all we’ve been learning these past few months ‘since school’s been out.’ I much prefer to think about our way of learning as a lifestyle. So, let the learning continue. Leave me a comment & tell me what you’ve been learning here lately.