The warmth of the sun rises, and the cool of the evening sky sets on our family classroom.
It happens through the summertimes, and during holidays, starts early in the mornings and ends late at night.
There are no limits to the students curiosity, no walls to their classrooms, no ages to their classes, no boundaries to their questions.
This is the place where it’s okay to teach kids about God, Jesus, giving up and holding on. This classroom thrives on physical touch, hugs, high fives, and arms wrapped around each other.
In our family classroom it’s okay to cry. It’s okay to leave. It’s okay to choose not to participate.
Our family classroom is rarely clean. In fact, it’s usually overflowing with messes, and spills and books and toys and projects.
There are never enough walls in our family classroom to hold all the priceless treasures that my children create. And I mean that honestly. For somehow, each one of them is exceptionally talented.
Oh, in case you wonder, our family classroom is noisy too. There are squeaky flutes & pounding pianos, and loud teenage music (that I rarely like), and kids squealing and teenagers crying, and toddlers racing, and moms and dads yelling to be heard above all the commotion. But it’s a happy, busy, noise, and if it’s too much, there are quiet corners. In our family classroom I’ve noticed that one rarely chooses to escape to silent bedrooms when instead they could be enjoying the community we find in being together.
This classroom is a safe place to make mistakes. It could be the mistakes of the teacher, or the mistakes of the student but either way, you are given the grace to figure it out and try again while still being loved and accepted.
One of my children took her first university course at 12 years old, another was just opening a book for the first time to read on her own. But in our family school, there are no bully’s to make fun, or grades to compare.
It’s okay to show up late, or show up in your jammies, as long as you’re willing show up at all, you can join us.
Some months our family classroom looks like endless mathematical equations, other months it looks like flying across the world and standing at the top of a volcano while hot lava literally explodes in bombs above your head, or diving to the bottom of a sea discovering creatures you never dreamed existed all around you.
All. Across. The. Globe. I get people asking me if I really think my family classroom is the healthiest choice for my kids.
My answer is… ‘Yes, it’s the greatest thing we’ve ever done!’
Some people may peek into my classroom and wonder when I’m gonna teach spelling rules and calculus. I reassure them that they need not worry, because at precisely the time when my children’s minds are ready to expand, they will get to immerse themselves in these important subjects, and nothing will stop them!
Until then, I am going to go from one end of the world to the other, and hopefully, spark a love of learning so deeply in their souls, that it can never be extinguished.
See you around,
Yes my kids will learn to read, and hopefully also learn to change the world with the wisdom they’ve gathered from endless hours sitting in the sunshine, basking in the ideas of history’s greatest thinkers.
Yes my kids will learn to write, and hopefully use that gift to spread the cause of freedom, & equality.
Yes my kids will learn to socialise, because from the time they were tiny they got to play with kids from cultures and countries across the earth, and philosophise with adults, and have one on one conversations with leaders and politicians.
Yes my kids will learn to add and subtract, and multiply and divide, and hopefully use those tools to seek further education or build something beautiful or to heal bodies & hearts.
My oldest left home at 17, is attending emergency medical training in another country, and trying to decide if she should go to Indonesia on a 6 month service mission with her cousin.
My 2nd oldest left home at 16, and is using this time on her own to discover the world. She is paying her own rent, buying her own groceries, and getting her own jobs.
My 3rd oldest of 15 years spends most her days reading, dreaming about horses and studying for the ACT.
My two next girls attend our local public school in grades 6 & 8, (don’t worry, I’ll help them catch up later).
My two little boys spend everyday chasing words and animals and books as we explore together. They dress up, dig up, and build up all blessed day long.
Each of these 7 children will take their own path, but hopefully, if I’ve done it right, they will each know who they are, or at least how to become who they want to be. That is the beauty of my family classroom.
This is a beautiful post. Your kids are blessed to have such varied and mind-expanding experiences and such super parents.
Thank you so much Lorraine! We had good mentors for parents 🙂
This is one of the best posts about the family classroom I have ever read! Thank you sooooo much . I hope you never ever stop making this world a better place by sharing your amazing perspective.
Thanks so much Sheira, we really appreciate you reading and sharing!
What a beautiful and inspiring post. Your ability to let reach child grow and develop at their own pace is wonderful. I am going to try harder to do the same with my family.
What a beautiful and inspiring post. Your ability to let reach child grow and develop at their own pace is wonderful. I am going to try harder to do the same with my family. It is heard to let go and trust in God more but it looks like that is what is working for your family.
What a beautiful school you have! I wish I could attend this myself so that I was better equipped to teach my kids is such a manner.
This is a really interesting look into how you educate and gives food for thought on how diverse education can be. Thanks for writing this
I absolutely love your philosophy about education!! Having had the privilege of actually meeting you and your amazing family, I know how relaxed, genuine, and real you are, and how authentic and child inspired you encourage their learning to be!!!
Can’t wait to hear where you will be heading on your next adventure!
Thank you so much Brenda! Parenting all seems to be one big experiment, so hopefully it proves to be as beneficial in the end as it has been in the beginning. It’s been a pleasure getting to know you these last two years 🙂 xoxo