It feels like a super heavy burden – being 100% responsible for my child's learning.
It's the third week of the first term for those who go to school. It's the next day the day after yesterday for my child, and I. Learning isn't something we switch on and off between class time or school days or school terms or holidays.
Learning is available for us every day!
I have this dark beast in my mind telling me every minute of every day 'Is what I am doing for my child enough?' The answer I respond with is 'probably not'. Now I don't know if my answer is accurate. I compare what my child and I do with what I imagine what the education system is doing. I always come up with the idea that I'm just not doing enough or doing it right and potentially stuffing up my child's life and future.
I mean we spend 10 mins before we start the day wrestling on a bed.
How is this good for my child's learning? Well, for a kid that doesn't hug or have siblings to mess around with I certainly love the physical contact and laughter we experience together.
It's the best and only hug I ever get.
One that is not gentle but rather one that where it's sole purpose is to conquer me! I'm happy with that. It's really fun and feels like bonding between a parent and child. I mean, how many parents wrestle with their children every day? I mark it down in our Learning Diary as 'Physical Activity'. Because that's exactly what it is. Aspergers discovered physical activity in the morning was wonderful for children on the ASD spectrum.
I have found that this is very true and very true for adults on the spectrum too!
As I blindly figure out how to 'unschool' it dawned on me just the other day; how are our schools preparing our children for their future when they fail to educate them about money? How to make money and make it grow through various means for various reasons. To survive here on this planet, I need money.
I need lots of other things, but I definitely need money.
I mean that's the primary point schools make: get an education to find a job and make money. But there's not much talking about money and how it works in the school setting. I would've benefited understanding the world we live in if I knew how the money thing worked and not just how to be paid by a boss but how to be a boss; an entrepreneur, an inventor etc.
“Whatever an education is, it should make you a unique individual, not a conformist; it should furnish you with an original spirit with which to tackle the big challenges; it should allow you to find values which will be your roadmap through life; it should make you spiritually rich, a person who loves whatever you are doing, wherever you are, whomever you are with; it should teach you what is important, how to live and how to die.” – John Taylor Gatto
My child has a ledger where they write in their income and expenditure.
My child knows where their money is coming from and where it is going. If they want money to buy something they know, they can do certain things to make it. My child comes across more money than I ever did as a child.
My child produced a music album last year and hasn't reached double digits in age yet.
The CD is sold in their other parent's shop and sells on average once a week. Last night as we discussed their new album I suggested we sell their songs online. Well, they were up for that. 'How do we do that?' they asked. What a great question and what a great activity to do the next day!
I was worried it was unethical to teach my child about money so young.
That it's not something children should be worried about. It never dawned upon me that learning about money and learning how to make it at a young age would be exhilarating or make sense why learning about mathematics is helpful.
I involve my child in our financial decisions – to build their life skills. The way I see it the money I receive as a Carer is for both of us, not just me. I see that money as our money, not MY money.
We work together as a team.
No–one is more important than the other. Just because I'm older and bigger doesn't mean I am more important. I'm providing my child with the opportunity to live free from the idea we have to 'obey educational authorities' or what others think what is important for my child to learn.
Anything they are interested matters. It's important to learn.
My child can ask questions, any question they like or have. This way we can learn more and be equipped with information to make decisions right for ourselves and live our lives according to our Roarheart's rather than someone else's.
I ask myself what can I do, if anything, to love and look after myself
Encourage my child to ask questions and respond to all of them
Research their answers from the internet, books, magazines, family, friends and community members, experiments and life experiences
Read more about Unschooling, Free To Learn and how it works
Practice living in the moment
Go slow and at pace that suits us and move away from mainstream and limited thinking to Loving, Trusting, Revelling and Leading with our brilliant autism.
John Taylor Gatto
Free To Learn | Psychology Today