Yesterday was Sam's birthday. He turned six, and his desire was to have fun all day, and then stay up all night and play. He got his wish. I went to bed – I choose to work today – but Kristin and the boys stayed up. They watched Star Wars Episode 1 and The Black Stallion Returns. They turned the Eagles on loud and danced. The played Pokemon. And that's just the stuff I know about. It wasn't the most restful night I've experienced.
He did it, but just barely. When I got up at 5 a.m., Sam was starting to fade. Kristin said she felt like she was in an airport. Trin, on the other hand, had gained his second wind and said he was wide awake. As Kristin carried Sam into the bedroom to watch the Making of Star Wars, he said, "Wake me up when we get in there."
Homeschooling is an incredible gift we give our children. Perhaps the most valuable gift we give them. We have no curriculum. We prioritize dreaming, following our interests, domestic arts, respect for self and others, fun and play outdoors, exploration, community service, natural and social sciences, reading and math, and music. The math they learn is meaningful, connected to what they're doing. The reading is, too, and mostly they teach themselves. They help us grow our own food and preserve it. They are an integrated part of our economic unit as a family. Their childhood is embodied freedom and responsibility, and they are thriving.
And one of the side effects is that a six-year-old boy can have his birthday wish and stay up all night, without losing a single minute of school.