It’s been another good year for us, and we are grateful for the another year of making new friends and strengthening existing ones, and doing various fun activities together as an unschooling community! This year was truly a year of awesome friendship!
Growing up with love
Our CLiC community has expanded from the time we started about 4 years ago. Prior to that, we started a playgroup for toddlers at a center in Kota Kemuning. One family stayed in since the early years and that family is the Quah family. Kai Zan’s son, Xuan Yu, was a very shy and clingy 2-year-old then. He would frantically look for his mother even though she was just out of the room for a few minutes. When he tried playing with the older kids, he often ended up in tears because he didn’t quite know how to fit in. When you talked to him, he would be to shy to answer you.
The Xuan Yu we have today is a bright and confident, soon-to-be 7 year-old, who is always amongst the first to raise his hands up to ask or answer a question in class, and speaks with confidence in front of everyone. He has the neatest handwriting, which is rather rare for a boy his age. The transformation is quite remarkable. He has also summoned up courage to do a sleepover at our house without his mother. Another definite milestone for him! These developments can be attributed to the nature of his education, that is without schooling, without pressure, without being hurried. It is a similar story with the rest of the CLiC kids (that’s what we affectionately call them!).
Reclaim your family’s education
In an environment of love and respect, where children get to be themselves and have the freedom to choose what they want to do, without having adults talking down at them with threats and punishments, without having to do anything that is against their wishes, the result most faults would expect is total chaos. But the truth is, we found that the opposite actually occurs. These children are kind-hearted, helpful and supportive of one another, do NOT practise teasing or bullying, do NOT compare themselves with one another, and are genuinely happy for the achievements of one another. They are inspired by one another, with the younger ones looking up to the older kids and learning from them, while the older kids help the younger ones with much love and patience. This may sound impossible or improbable but it is true! And all we need to do as parents and educators is to love each child respectfully and unconditionally, and they will reciprocate with the same.
Suggested New Year Resolutions:
This New Year, try these as your resolutions:
1. I will STOP being judgmental and critical of myself and my children.
2. I will STOP trying to measure them, label them or confine their learning into neat little boxes called packaged curriculum.
3. I will STOP worrying about whether they are really learning or not, or if they were playing too much.
Instead, I will start to of these things:
1. I will START appreciating their being and to enjoy each moment of their growing years.
2. I will START acknowledging their strengths instead of harping on their weaknesses.
3. I will START enjoying their learning process and be more involved in their interests and activities.
Have another happy and meaningful year ahead with your loved ones! Make the world your classroom – travel and explore more of the various arts and cultures, histories and stories. Most of all, create your own learning experiences and empower your children to take ownership of their learning. This is your best gift to them!
Happy 2014 everyone!