Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Natural living, natural learning

Events have conspired to largely keep me away from the computer in recent weeks, which I originally viewed as a curse but now see more as a blessing. Certainly, it's been an education. We've been very busy: two of the teenagers have been away on camping and hiking trips with their friends and the business has been growing as usual. (I must blog about that - I see that I haven't for quite a while!) and the children have been as active and inquisitive as ever.

We settled into a natural rhythm of living, learning and just getting on with things together. I can understand why most people don't bother with blogging or any kind of online social networking: when you've got a few children and an offline social life to keep up with, as well as all of us doing our own studying etc, it's enough. I could withdraw very easily from the online world, though I'd miss the many friends I've met here.

But I don't, because I like having the outlet when I've got something to say! And what I'm trying to say here is that learning, like life, does not need to be externally regulated. This is what's kept coming back to me as I've been cleaning, playing, reading, cooking, washing, chatting, wrestling with tents and so on. Everything gets done, even though nobody is standing over me with a big stick, making sure I do it. Educating my children is a natural instinct, just like wanting to learn is for them.

But it's more than that: this unregulated family life that so many people seem to be so afraid of, is far from degenerative chaos. It's not always peaceful, perfect and harmonious but enough of it is to make the whole thing precious and special, to keep it safe and to protect it from invasion.


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