Unschooling Day 1

And so it begins…I had thought we’d be doing the bird watching/feeding/classifying activities today, but T wasn’t feeling it. I knew a certain level of flexibility would be required this week and did not expect the activities I planned to absolutely occur on the assigned days. I just wanted to have enough enriching activities/materials available so that I wouldn’t have to scramble for something to do on any given day.

Even so, I was disappointed at T’s lack of interest in “Bird Day.” He loves to look through our bird book, discuss the different species (and cackle at every single one with “tit” or “booby” in its name), and where they might be found throughout the country. I resigned myself to another day of watching him play Xbox all day. I moped over to the computer to schedule my showings for the next day. If we weren’t going to be reveling in nature and sunshine and communing with all manner of backyard creatures, I might as well get some work done.

Eventually, I noticed that he was no longer playing Plants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare, but was on the floor behind me building PvZ characters with his Legos. He did that for quite some time until an ABC Mouse commercial came on. His head popped up and he said, “I wanna play ABC Mouse!” He did that for about 20 minutes and then went back to his PvZ Lego creations. Every minute he spends with his Legos, he’s exploring his creativity, engaging in creative problem solving and–most importantly–working on his fine motor skills (which need a lot of work!).

I went from mopy to misty almost instantaneously. It occurred to me that he was doing exactly what I wanted for him–learning in his own way and of his own volition. The over-planning control freak in me has had a hard time trusting that he will find his own path with maximum support and minimal interference from me, but there it was happening right in front of my mopy face despite my fears and worry. Ain’t that some shit?

On a positive note, we received a packet of butterfly garden seeds in the mail from our homeowner’s insurance company. T wanted to plant a butterfly garden immediately (and I had planned building a butterfly feeder for later in the week). So instead of the herb garden I had penciled in, we’ll be planting a little butterfly garden from seed and making the feeder. At least he’s excited about THAT activity. 🙂


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