Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Unschooling? Me? Maybe. Wednesday, 21 Sep 11

I realized that when I gave Jesse his reduced schedule this week and he was surprised that he didn't have all of his usual work on it, he added his Bible class on his own.  He penciled it in where it usually goes.  I think that might be how unschooling started.  I think I might start unschooling Jesse.  I put some info about it at the bottom of this post.

Here (below) is what Jesse decided to do on his own today with leftover water color paint that we had from the fresco project.  

 Isn't is beautiful?!

Levi slept in his own bed all night last night!  Mara couldn't come today, but Jesse had some free time so he helped with Levi.

For lunch, Darby had Jesse's ravioli that was sitting on the kitchen counter.  She ate it right out of the Polish pottery bowl without knocking the bowl to the floor.  She went into her kennel for awhile.
Jesse decided to paint some more today and Christian enjoyed doing it with him.

The following is from

The author wrote about a book she found:
Sitting at the Feet of Rabbi Jesus: How the Jewishness of Jesus Can Transform Your Faith.  It’s about understanding the Jewish culture of Jesus’ time, traditions, and way of life so that you can understand the impact of some of the things that He did and said in a Jewish contextA Different Way to Learn”
It explains the time-honored method in which Jewish boys and girls learned in Jesus’ day (and common throughout the world for many centuries).  It reads, 
“They didn’t take math classes.  Instead, they watched how their fathers measured and calculated as they were building, and they noticed how their mothers counted their money at the market. “
“The girls didn’t take home economics classes but learned to pluck and cook a chicken by helping their mothers and sisters.” 
“Children didn’t crack open their history textbooks either.  Instead, they learned the epic stories of their ancestors as their family gathered around the glow of the evening fire.”
“The usual method of learning was through hands-on experience, imitating someone who possessed the skills they wanted to aquire.”
What a radical idea!  Learning through your life experiences and acquiring the applicable skills you needed along the way?  By doing?  You mean Jesus was in large part Unschooled? Blasphemy!

And boys that did have formal schooling in reading and studying scripture stopped at age 13 to go work with his family or under an apprentice to learn a trade.

Once apprenticed,
“Learning wasn’t so much about retaining data as it was about gaining essential wisdom for living, absorbing it from those around him.  This was the ancient method whereby rabbis trained their disciples.”

This particularly strikes a cord with me because the reason I first decided to bring my children home was so that I could disciple them, not educate them.

Our children are our talmidim.  Our disciples.  Our learners.

The book describes a Rabbi’s (teacher’s) relationship with their disciple as one of constant contact and total commitment.  They lived together, ate together, worked together, talked together.

“The goal wasn’t just academic learning but personal transformation.  The Gospels make it clear that this is the kind of relationship Jesus had with is own disciples.  His talmidim followed him everywhere.  And as they did, their hearts were challenged and changed.”

This is the goal of Christian unschooling.  Not retaining data but raising our children in an unrestrained environment of constant contact and discipleship.  Of listening  to the spirit and allowing God to play a great hand in igniting passion and talent in our children.  Of discipling by example, allowing our children to be immersed in our lives and experiences so that they can learn to do as we do.

It is not irresponsible, it is not lazy, and it is not a violation of scripture.

It is our attempt at allowing God to more organically shape the lives and futures of our children.

And the veterans of Christian Unschooling can tell you that it was effective, life changing on the part of Rabbi and Talmidim, and worth every second.

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