Our way of learning / education is natural . It is a continuous cycle of forever growing .
In our life this is our homeschool . It is not at all similar nor does it ever reflect that of a public school .
So ultimately we are nonschoolers who use various methods in order to learn & teach .
I have to say I love being teacher . I love that in being a beautiful teacher one learns we are actually always & forever the student .
I believe this is the key to being a teacher , being able to receive in order to give .
My first intro to homeschool I realized was not actually even in my adult life but rather in my own childhood.
My grandmother and her parents in fact were all teachers.
My great grandparents were Pennsylvania ditch and migrated from ON. here . Noah Bowman was a firm believer in educating his own . His family had access to music and he indeed was a rebel at the time playing the fiddle non stop ☺
He also firmly believed women as well as men deserved education .The children read , kept journals and yes all the girls in this family received a higher education in University if they so wished to do so .
My grandmother was a teacher . She taught in many one room school houses in the woods ☺
She also taught my uncle & my mother at home for some yrs. not liking the teacher at the time .
They read Kenneth Grahame and A.A Milne !
My mother herself was self taught for gr. 11 and when writing the exams was found to be so spot on skipped gr.12 and sent right into nursing school !
My grandmothers gifts to us as children were often books . never plastic anything !
she also was very much loved by her students in public school for she sent them out on nature hikes , learning about art & culture. She received letters from her students yrs after teaching them .
As she got older and found retirement . She built herself a new home . She in fact purposely had many small rooms built , to house students attending the University only a block away. She unlike other home owners in the area did not over charge students .She knew the needs of people very well. She continued working with the naturalists etc. for many yrs. as well.
So a love of learning was instilled in me at a very young age.
I saw a great difference in my grandmothers value of education compared to some . She never gave the impression someones status was better than based on education . Just passing on the belief of One Can , if one wishes to learn and grow the accessibility is there .
The Waldorf thing came to me about 26 yrs ago when traveling in MX there was a couple with a dd the same age as our own . They were from NY and she was in fact a Waldorf teacher .
They had the same values as we did , homebirth , nursing , natural living . They spoke a lot of their community at Ithaca and the school etc.
I did not really pursue the interest but this was my first knowledge and exposure.
The next time was when our 2nd child Jasmine was born . I had met a lady threw our midwife who is now my friend of 25 yrs. !! She invited us over one day for a play date and she had a catalogue from Oakmeadow !!
lol the catalog was small and very folky looking ☺
However price as is now was an issue but through this exposure I learned a bit more of the actual Waldorf practices used in educating children .
My biggest draw of course , the exposing children to natural learning through nature . Natural learning activities like handicrafts , seasonal cooking , songs and stories .
The next time I was exposed to a Waldorf family was once again in MX after the birth of our ds Dacotah . I met one of the most inspiring families !
They had 8 children and she was expecting their 9th !!!
They lived in a school bus & they used Oakmeadow ! They had come to MX after living in India for many yrs. They showed us the local shop which sold granola & yogurt and she had found the local area midwife .
I laughed because the family was so calm , natural & the mum went off to mass each and every morning . Yet those boys !!! would spend almost the whole day making sticks into guns and making barricades out of boulders playing war games all day !!!
A few yrs later my sil ordered Oakmeadow and she was so impressed with it . That when I took our boys out of school I did order it. Yet I found the older grades to be to schooly and I also love love freedom to move into other subjects if need be.
I am to free spirited to follow a curriculum ! This took me yrs and yrs to discover and it is not that the OM or Sonlight was a bad thing . I just used bits and pieces is all which is all about what homeschooling is . Having that choice to do it your own way , the best fit for Your family ☺
Ok can I say Montessori schools here in Canada now are not true Montessori !
I can say this because I attended a true / real Montessori school as a child .
Back then the teachers trained in the methods of Maria Montessori and taught in her methods not bound by the influence of money from funding , subsidies and having to follow provincial curriculum .
I later learned of Montessori ed via friends who sent their children to Montessori daycare and school .
Again my draw to this method of education is letting the child have not dumbed down exposure . To be able to take part in real intellectual learning & understanding . Given real food not the fake processed stuff .
So I have learned and found much of the true Montessori through many beautiful homeschool influences
Enter Charlotte Mason ! She is by far my greatest influence on how we homeschool in the natural way .
I also did truly discover her via home education !
My sil was the one who found her and thought of me right off when reading her methods of education !
She was so right !! I felt an instant connection . I think because miss. Mason's work reminded me so much of my grandmother Grace in encouraging the natural learning processes. She respected children as whole people .
I also love love the simplicity involved .
One of my absolute fav authors is also a lover of ms. mason's work . So this type of education is a really great fit for us in our homeschool .
I love how learning with ms. Mason's teachings , learning has very little to do with status or money ☺
I could write regarding what each and every method is and how it works etc. but there are already so many wonderful blogs out there . I do not believe there is a need for me to do so. I also believe taking the time to read books and put things into practice is the best way to see if these methods are the best fit for You & Your family .
If it is causing great discomfort throw it out . If it fits well keep those bits that make it do so ☺
mold what is given into what works for your family and you shall be free homeschooling .!
Below are Just a Few Websites that have Been Helpful to me as well as a Few of the Helpful Books & Mags that inspire me to keep on going ☺
Hawthorn Press ( the festival series is awesome )