Handmade Homeschool Philosophy

A handmade pottery mug is a handful of texture and nuance, a unique piece that will never exist again. A human hand and a human mind shaped it just as it is because it was right. A ceramic mug, no matter how cunning or sweet the design, will never have that special touch. Just as a meal from a box will never taste like one chopped up in your kitchen. Just as a print of a painting is flat compared to the texture of paint on canvas. Handmade deepens and enriches and flavours everything we can taste or touch or see or feel.

I want to bring the DIY explosion of energy to homeschooling: make what you want, make it fit, make it yours.

I have gone from a type-A perfectionist, over-achieving academic who was afraid to fail and disconnected from my own life to a woman who has learned to occupy her life. I’m no longer plagued by fear and by a need to put labels on everything. Instead, mothering and homeschooling have taught me to be a part of my life, to have faith in the flow of life, to know that I am strong. I’ve come to see life as an art form – some people are buying their lives off the shelf like TV dinners, but life is a canvas and I’m the artist.

In clothing, there used to be no sizes. There was no average woman and there was no size 8. You took a few measurements, selected the style you wanted, chose the cloth and colour and then you made your clothing or had it made for you. There used to be no average child, too, no Grade 3. You paid attention to the child, taught what was teachable, moved forward from where you were.

I don’t want to settle for a pre-fab life. I don’t plan to settle for a pre-fab homeschool. I believe that we’re all – each and every one of us – the experts on our families. Why do we let others tell us what’s right at which time? Life is the great adventure; homeschooling can be the key to unlocking your own adventure. It can be the leap off the safe ledge into the unknown. It can teach us more than it ever seemed to offer. Yet too many of us, myself included, homeschool like it’s a boating safety course.

Life is an adventure. Be an adventurer.

Your life is a work of art. Be an artist.

Your children are artists and adventurers who need guides and mentors. Be a guide. Be a mentor.


28 thoughts on “Handmade Homeschool Philosophy

  1. V says:

    Thanks…I needed that. You say it so true. The kids almost went to school this month (for real)…I just couldn’t do it. I want them to stay artist and adventurers.

  2. sharon says:

    What a wonderful job you’ve done of summing up how we try to live. It’s great to hear it from a source outside of myself. Thanks so much!!!

  3. Cheryl says:

    I hear you! I have been thinking on this myself lately – I want my children to have a rich life. We have been doing K12 and it feels too much like “school” at home. The whole point is to create right brained people. Creative people. not little computers.

  4. garance says:

    I just stumbled upon your blog, I love it!
    It’s inspiring just reading your posts.
    I am a mom, wife, artist, and recently started a blog.
    My son is 14 months old, but I’m already getting great ideas for homeschooling.

  5. SusieM says:

    I have found your blogs so inspirational and insightful over the past few years. I LOVE Handmade Homeschool and am awed by all the amazing, beautiful and creative work you and your children do. Thanks for putting it down on paper, or the internet and I have a question…what kind of camera do you use? Your photos are so luscious and the close ups are incredible! I’ve been wanting to get a new camera and I always think of your photos…

  6. Free says:

    You have a lovely blog.

    I think home schooling works really well for those that have functional parents, but can be a disaster when the opposite is true. My experience is that there are two categories of people that home school – either very “enlightened” ones or people that want total control over their children and that are paranoid et c…

    Good luck!

  7. whatchamacalit says:

    Do you have any teenagers, or pre-teens you are homeschooling? My own have their very own strong ideas in and of themselves on how they will or will not be educated. I’m trying to work them into my plans.

    • Laura C. says:

      Amen to that – my kids are showing the fruit of never having been schooled in that they can spot a new “method” a mile away and will often have no part in it! On the other hand, if I return to the core concept that their education is primarily about helping them become their best versions of themselves, i.e. uncovering and understanding their God-given life purposes, then life runs more smoothly…I love you saying you are trying to work them into your plans! That works well up to a certain age (maybe 5 or 6 around here), then it starts getting way more complex! Good luck on your journey – all of you.

  8. Melissa Y. says:

    I just found your site and it speaks to my soul. I have been home schooling for 3 years. My children are very different from each other personality wise. So new two programs, books, and or learning style works for them both. The only thing they both have in common is the need be present in their lives to learn. I always keep a colage of qoutes to keep me present and lively. My favorite from Norm Abrahams of this old house, “You can learn something new everday if your paying attention”. Life is in the details. Home schooling is about life and all it’s adventures.

  9. Tracy says:

    This is how I have been enjoying life these past 26 years; with my youngest about to turn 3 I am still happily immersed in it all. Lovely to come across someone with a similar outlook.

  10. 5orangepotatoes says:

    You are lovely! I used to be Type A crazy woman myself, and have found life to be so much easier once I realized to just go with the flow and enjoy. I will be back for a visit time and time again!

  11. banshee brown says:

    Perhaps it’s just because I’m looking for it, but I do seem to notice how many more parents are making every effort to be ‘present’ for their children; being present is possibly the best present we can give them.
    Your words inspire. Thanks for that.

  12. Jo Hilder says:

    Good for you. I’ve been living this out for the past fifteen years and have raised four kids both homeschooling and traditional schooling as well. I’m so glad I invested those years in homeschooling – we have independent thinking creative artists and caring community members who aren’t afraid of society and believe they can facilitate positive change at every level. It’s a tough calling you’re following but I applaud you. I hope your journey is as rewarding, interesting and joyous as ours has been.
    Jo Hilder

  13. worldwideopenmind says:

    Great!Im just starting out on this journey…. exciting but I feel like im in the amazon with no GPS. started blogging to document this journey .. We Going to take our sons.. 8weeks and 4 years old sailing around the world to educate them…

  14. Naomi says:

    When I’m feeling flat, or like I’m going crazy, or that I’m ruining my children forever (usually inspired by some stranger’s less-than-informed opinion), I come back here and read this, and it recharges my spirit and my heart. Thank you so very much!

  15. carter ashby says:

    I LOVE this message! I’m not “there” yet in terms of letting go of some of those pre-programmed rules and standards, but I’ve come a long way in embracing individualism and rejecting that which does not benefit me and my family. You wrote this beautifully and I find it very inspiring. Can’t wait to read more of your blog!

  16. sunnydelay says:

    Thanks for expressing so well, the beauty and joy of living our lives with courage, honesty, and faith. Faith in our love for our family and growing and living all together in an inspired creative adventurous way. You are doing a beautiful job of it! Living with integrity is definitely an outside the box mentality these days. Thanks for being a breath of fresh air!!

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