Monday, 3 August 2009

We're on our journey...

I've been discussing recently with friends, and in cyberspace, the concept of the home education journey. This is the idea that home education is an ongoing journey of discovery, not just for our children but for us as home educators. During that journey we find out things about ourselves, our children, and about the people and the world around us, we may also find out that some things only start to make sense when we have reached a particular point in our journey.

The concept of the home education journey was a theme that ran through a few of the HESFES conference discussions in July. These were discussions about how we explain home education to people who have no experience of it, who are so entrenched in the idea of 'schooling' as education, that they really cannot comprehend what we are doing. In particular, there were discussions about how we explain autonomous education.

The truth is that I don't know. All I can say, honestly, is that I never understood home eeducation until I was doing it myself; I never understood how children learned until I saw them learn (often despite my attempts to teach them!), and I certainly didn't understand autonomous education until I saw it in action, working, in my own children. Some things just have to be experienced; sometimes you just have to be at that point in the journey when you have the mindset to take these things on. No amount of book-reading or good advice will make that happen. Anyway, talking of HESFES, I think I'm well overdue for posting up some photos, so here goes. The thing is, so much has happened since, I'm gagging to post other things up too.

Here is dd modelling the woven grass basket that she made - with a bit of help - in one of the HESFES workshops.

She is also modelling the jumper that I finally completed at HESFES. There was plenty of child-free time each afternoon in the conference tent to click those needles. The day after I put it on her, she said to me. 'Do you know what mummy? I think I've grown into it now.' Oh, and here's proof that I actually did knit the jumper. I hate to put photos of me on the blog, especially when I'm sporting a 'camping with minimal facilities' hairstyle, but hey-ho.

Somewhere under all those children is an armoured vehicle. Er hum..don't you know we're British and we're meant to queue. Ok, last one into the tank is a sissy!

Dd showing off her mask that she made; it was a path paved with a few tears after she was late for the first mask making session and missed out, but it was worth it. A few bottles of wine later (for the parents) and we all felt much better.

Ahah! I've finally caught up with the one who refuses to be photographed. Eating some bush tucker, made Ray Mears style of course (via Paddock Wood Waitrose)

This camping ground is so hard I think I'm going to use the dog as a pillow tonight...

Ok, now I've really had enough:

The highlight of the week was making hoola hoops. Even us adults had a go, but of course the best hoopas were the kids...

Can't seem to upload any vids at the moment. Could be something to do with the fact that our internet cable looks like an unravelling piece of string, held together with insulating tape..?


Sam said...

Looks like a lot of fun. And sunny? I don't remember any sun recently ;-)

Lynn said...

That looks like great fun!I had read a couple of really dire reports, but sounds like you all enjoyed it.

Nice to "see" you.Always nice to put a face to the writing:-)xx

Carol said...

A journey, definitely, with the occasional bits on a roller coaster! I agree, I didn't get HE until I started it....and as for autonomous learning.......thought it was pie in the sky. My frustration is that as I have finally seen the supreme benefits of autonomous learning, the government seem set on trying to squash it all :( There's no doubt it sometimes feels like an impossible task to try to explain AE to those entrenched in the system...that would have been me 3 years back!

By the way, I think you look rather fetching with your knitting!

Big mamma frog said...

Yes, Sam, there was sun (sometimes a bit too much sun!). I'm not sure why it is, but the more time we spend outdoors camping, firelighting, den-making, the less relevant the weather seems to be. HESFES was great fun, Lynn, despite the 'challenges' of the facilities (overflowing toilets comes to mind!). Nothing that a bottle of wine, a positive attitude and some good company cant overcome!