Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Unschooling Co-op

Our Unschooling Co-op rotates locations. We each take turns hosting and sometimes it falls through and that's okay. This way, we get to be our lazy, spontaneous, unschooling selves without all the pressure of imposing unnecessary (and unwanted) structure on ourselves and our children. So we get together and the kids play and sometimes there's an activity and sometimes we just eat snacks and hang out. The families present vary wildly, but everyone is always welcome to drop in or not. It's great. It fits our families perfectly.

Just recently, my sister Natalie moved in with us so she tends to attend the unschooling events right alongside the children. This is nice because I have help with getting snacks and children ready, and we all get out of the house and spend time together.

One particular Wednesday not too long ago, one of the families brought a Henna kit with lots of books of examples and instructions. Aleks ignored the lot of it, preferring to watch older kids play video games and jump on the trampoline with Ivy, but Bastian observed the adults carefully adding the color to their skin intently.

Natalie is highly skilled at henna, or so it seems. Her design was incredible and featured, on one side, the head of Ganesha. Ganesh happens to be my favorite Hindu god (or manifestation of Shiva, depending on who you ask). He's the Remover of Obstacles and is always the first god invoked in the beginning of religious ceremonies and rituals. We have a statue of him above our computer, which is handy, as the wikipedia page on Ganesha says he is also the Patron of Letters to be invoked during writing sessions. If I weren't an atheist, I'd be a Ganapatya (well, maybe not). We already bring him presents regularly which fill two decorative bowls on either side of him. Despite all that atheism, I have a superstitious tendency and enjoy private rituals, even if they're silly and leave me babbling endlessly in the blogosphere for no reason.

Natalie's favorite part of her henna'd hand were the dark sections on her fingerprints. She insisted on pointing them out for several days.
I guess it's Natty who's unschooling now.

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