Unschooling on the Dairy Farm: Alex's Interview

There's one thing we can say about Alex: she really gets around! In hemispheres, that is.

You see, Alex grew up in Rio de Janeiro and now lives with her husband and two children on a dairy farm in Minnesota. If you want to learn more about her family's life up North with the cows, click here to go to her blog.

But first, read on to hear how mother's milk played a part in Alex's journey to a natural unschooling life...

1. How long have you been homeschooling (or if finished, how long did you homeschool)?

I have not been homeschooling long. My oldest Naruto turns 7 this June and my youngest Gigi is 40 months old. But I am so glad I have been reading on homeschooling since Naruto was about 10 months old.

When I had Naruto he was what some call a high needs baby. I learned to be in tune and attentive thanks to this child that nursed 24 hours a day. When he was about 3-4 months I found Dr. Sears book, The Baby Book. I did not know that there was a name for what I was doing. It was Attachment Parenting.

I came to unschooling when I was surfing the net one day and found The Natural Child and Jan Hunt. It was my ticket to unschooling. There were several articles on unschooling and it was like a continuation of what I was already doing at that tender age.

In Attachment Parenting we trust our children and trust is paramount for one to Unschool. I kept reading and researching on unschooling and the more I read the more I agreed with it. I also became part of an online unschooling group (Always Unschooled) when my son was 2 and a half years old and found Sandra Dodd and joyfullyrejoycing.

2. One of the main benefits of homeschooling is the freedom and flexibility it allows. Can you give us a few examples of how this freedom and flexibility benefited you (your family)?

Freedom and Flexibility works great for our family. We are Dairy Farmers and our schedule is far different from most typical American families.

My husband starts work at 4:30 AM and goes until 9:00 PM many days. He is usually able to take a few hours in the middle of the day to do things with the kids and the weekends are no different than the week days. If the kids were in school they would only have a few hours in the weekend to truly be with their dad.

We can go places that are usually crowded while everyone is in school and at work.

We can go to bed late and wake up late.

We can go to Cow Shows with dad any day of the week and be here when the calves are born to help him.

If we did not homeschool they would miss so much in their lives. Gigi does chores every day with dad and she would be very upset to miss that.

3. Another benefit of homeschooling is the fun factor. Can you give us a few examples of some especially fun times you had as a result of homeschooling?

We are all for fun stuff. We get to go to places with our homeschooling friends like theme parks and museums and have it all to ourselves. We get to play all day because for unschoolers playing and learning go hand in hand.

My kids are happy. They have fun. They learn everyday.

We have time to have many animals the kids want.

We have time to play games as a family.

We have time to run in the yard and explore places together. We have time to have fun.

Our lives are not separated between school life and home life. Most things we do, we do it because we like it and because we have fun doing them.

4. We all have funny experiences while homeschooling. Can you share one of yours with us?

My son was in Cub Scouts this year and he got the most beads for completing electives in his den. People asked how we did it. We did not intentionally do it. The electives were just part of our lives because school takes the child's time away from family and the real world.

I guess they still think we intentionally completed those many electives. We just smile....

1 comment:

Alex Polikowsky said...

It was an honor to be asked to do this interview. Thank you!