I’ve just returned from another trip to see my eldest in the city – a very different lifestyle from the one she started out with here.
The wrench of parting doesn’t seem to get any easier dammit! I realise this after looking back through my posts to earlier visits with her. But we still have just as much fun. And we’re still always learning. Although as I said in my blog post at the time…
It’s me being educated as I discover new grown bits of this vibrant adult. Not only is she working to keep a roof over her head, she is keeping her more creative passions alive with her performing, teaching others, running a business, and developing her own productions thus creating opportunities for others.
And some people accused us of creating ‘jobless, no-hopers’ by home educating our children.
Some people are just unbearably narrow minded.
“So, I want to ask you a question,” I said as we sat over coffee in a brimming cafe full of others sheltering from the chill. Not the kind of hubbub I’m generally used to in my reclusive, rural, writerly days.
“Other parents just starting home educating want encouragement. What advice would you give to parents and children?”
She burst out laughing over the thought of herself giving advice – she didn’t feel that grown up! But then launched into one of those passionate, pro-active, inspirational outbursts I admire so much.
“I would say – encourage experience in any subject they might be interested in or show passion for whether you know about it or not and don’t just stick to the constraints of the National Curriculum. There are thousands of other subjects which are ignored. Don’t discredit subjects that are not academic subjects … do you want to produce a clone or someone who has had a wide experience of different subjects which could be applied to a spectrum of different careers? And to the kids I would say – don’t just follow the crowd, follow your own interests whether they’re deemed to be ‘normal’ or not.”
Laughter bubbles up again and I catch it too! We both know what an independent spirit she is and how she wants to inspire others to be the same. So much for home educating keeping kids cloistered!
I thought about this on the long way back. Before I go to bed after one o’clock by this time I let her know I’m back safe and we swap loving texts. Among the love there’s more advice to swap;
‘Every day life is about learning is it not!” she writes.
She is so right. I am learning. She loves learning. And I’m convinced that she discovered that from home education!