I listened to an interview with author Zadie Smith on Literary Friction. She isn’t on social media. Why? Because as the Internet has evolved in the last 30 years, she asserts that what we share and post is held accountable for purity, for clarity, for identification with a perspective. The complexity of our selves is hidden. We’ve all become mini-brands, rather than the complicated, filled-with-contradictions people we are.
It struck a chord with me. If I have to maintain a certain belief and never reveal doubts in public, I become alienated from my own thoughts. I drive my uncertainties and qualms underground to uphold an image.
Peter Elbow, my writing guru, recommends private writing as the antidote—a place to put your truest thoughts, to get to know your own mind again. We can give this gift to our children too. We can take time to write together. We can protect that writing from readers: no one reads it except the writer. Children and parents write at the same time, that writing goes in a private folder only for the child’s eyes (not yours either).
No fulfilling someone else’s image of you, including parents.
In a day and time when ALL writing is publicly curated for an audience, to live honestly and write bravely means getting to know your insides again without the demands of an audience.
Try it. You may like it.
I know I do.
This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one.
Everyone says schooling is about Reading, ‘Riting and ‘Rithmetic. This year, let’s talk about the fourth ‘R’ in education:
Without a loving connection, learning leads to frustration and tears.
In January 2021, the Brave Learner Home is hosting an expert who will talk to us about how to enhance your connection to your scattered kids—the ones who can never find their matching shoes or forget what you asked them to do two minutes after you asked.
We kick off our Master Classes in 2021 with an overview of executive processing—what it is and why we should care. Executive processing requires a level of metacognition that our kids are still in the process of developing—yes, even our teens! Learn how to support that growth without damaging your relationship.
Can you imagine yourself on June 1—looking back on this school year? How do you want to feel? What would you like to be able to say about your year with your kids?
Take a moment to think of one or two items.
Write them down.
One might be aspirational—we’ll get through Ancient Greece and Rome in history, Sarah will learn to read, and we’ll complete 3 writing projects.
Another might be atmospheric—we’ll incorporate more coziness, we’ll have tea times and make muffins.
Another might be philosophical—I want to implement partnering with my kids’ learning, I want to adopt a natural learning approach.
Now ask yourself:
What can I do to move in that direction now, just for today?
Check in once a week to see what you have done to move toward that end goal, that vision, that feel.
There are no shortcuts, no simple 6 steps you take to have the homeschool of your dreams. Each day, you inch closer to or away from that vision that lives in your imagination.
There will be times of doubt that make you double back to someone else’s good idea (a school’s, your mother’s, your best friend’s). But it’s never too late to pivot again and reassert the vision YOU value.
You get there one day at a time, one child at a time, one interaction at a time. It’s good that it takes time because this is your life! No reason to hurry through it. There’s no “there” to get to! There’s only this, only now, only these wonderful people in your care.
This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!
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