I am sitting here feeling quite contented, the house truck is in the throes of chaos, as we build new drawers and shelves and fine tune existence in the 5m x 2.5m space, on the back of a truck, that the four of us live in. we are continually refining to make life special in our little space, so that all our needs are met.We just flew home to Oz after 29 days travelling in Bali, Indonesia. We travelled really light, taking one simple backpack that we stuffed two changes of clothes each in and Moss's scooter, ready for anything, we didn't make too many plans. We wanted to immerse ourselves in the flow, find our way on a pretty tight budget and follow whatever felt inspired!
Travelling with children is so exciting, It was interesting being monsoon season, sometimes we were a little trapped indoors! The four of us loved the freedom of all of us piling on a motorbike, which just isn't allowed here in Oz! Choosing a road to follow and discover its secrets was such a pleasure. Lotus loved the wind in her hair on the bike and often fell asleep on me, Moss would ride up front leaning on Peck, we all squeezed together. veerrrrry fun! here we come cacao farms, coconut groves, volcanic beach hideaways, water temples, mangosteens, dingy warungs, bright flowers, rice terraces, colourful markets.....
This is a bit like what we looked like on our bike!
It was on this trip that I came to realise a few things about my children's eagerness to learn, autonomy, syncronicity and passions. Moss was thrown into an entirely new country and was really really emotional, it was challenging for me to be with these emotions~ with Bali belly, it was monsoon, it was hot, yet really recognising and holding space for him felt so important.
As Moss adjusted, he immersed himself in the kids play with fireworks. Every day for two whole weeks before, during and after xmas, and up to NYE, he would carefully select his fireworks and eagerly anticipate the evenings return so that he could play with the Balinese kids, setting off really loud and bright fireworks!
Moss was so passionate, we did not limit his fireworks passion, in fact we were able to safely and easily facilitate this new passion and take it seriously with him. Moss grew so much in his confidence as he interacted with many age groups and cultures, felt into his own limits as he explored the many varieties of explosions, he was able to gauge by observation (not being told but us being present ) how far was a safe distance to stand from the little detonators. He connected so much with his self awareness, not to mention his adventurous daddy over this new interest as well!
Moss was able to figure out how much currency he would need for an icecream and take him self down to the store and purchase what he wanted. He grew in confidence and started really relying on his inner resources so much more. Free range in Indo.
We have had such a strong attachment with Moss while really learning to facilitate and assist him in his autonomy, encouraging his choices etc, yet at the same time being more than willing to be there when he needed us! which was often and for a really long time... at the moment, he is realising his incredible abilities and letting us know that he can do it! and do anything at that!
What really surprised me was Mossy's questions. It was like the world opened up and EVERYthing has become fascinating, he wants to figure it out and the constant questions are SO MUCH FUN! Moss has shown me many subjects that I personally would like to get deeper understanding of, through his thoughtful questions. It is such an exciting time for me as a mama choosing this path because I feel so honoured to witness this little being be here in his absolute wisdom and newness.
Which brings me to this little exerpt from the site "The Natural Child Project"
"Unschoolers are often described by what we do not do; we do not "teach"; we do not impose an arbitrary, artificial curriculum; we do not structure the hours of our "school day". But there are so many things we do:
- Answer questions. Many of us believe that this is the most essential aspect of unschooling.
- Encourage creative and cooperative solutions to problems as they arise.
- Find resources and information to support whatever interests the child is currently exploring.
- Attempt to illustrate, through our own actions every day, such personal qualities as kindness, honesty, and responsibility.
- Model the joy of learning through our own discussions, reading, and research."
What I am really excited about is everyday, since their births, my babies have expanded more and more, touching new things, feeling new textures, tasting life's many offerings, and that is without me in their way.
Life and learning are one, life simply begs to be explored, pondered, dreamed of, questions asked....
Moss who has only ever typed his name, picked up chalk yesterday and WROTE it. I have never coached him with letters or their sounds, he simply learns by looking at letters, asking me to read signs, books, menus, App instructions, youtube video titles and comments. He is, as are all of us constantly immersed in life, it seems to just rub off...
This is all nothing new for many of us, yet I find it so exciting to relax, trust and get out of the way while my children discover their capability and creativity thru their inquisitivity.
I have nothing to teach them and everything to remember.