My son Woody turned six in November of 2011. That would have been the kindergarten year for most kids, 180 days that mark the beginning of the school career. But Woody did his learning in the big, wide, beautiful world, without school being a part of it.

I'm Teresa Honey, and I kept this blog to document this time in my son's life, to share pictures and stories with far-away friends and relatives, and to add ours to the many stories of families living rich, engaging, loving lives with learning happening all the time and in many forms, totally inseparable from every other part of being human.

Here you'll find 180 or so learning moments recorded from August, 2011 to April, 2012 in the life of a 5-turned-6-year-old radically unschooled kid.

Saturday, December 17, 2011


The enthusiasm for the Advent calender has waned somewhat. We are all burning out on crafts and baking, and twice I've spoiled the following day's activity by accidentally telling the boys about it the night before. But, we are working with it. Yesterday's Advent calender activity was to build a Nacimiento scene together. I got the idea from the book Circle Round (p. 97). We talked a little bit about Christmas being a holiday that celebrates birth, and how births are beautiful events whose joy and responsibility all of us share, how new babies are gifts to their families and communities but also opportunities to extend hope and love.

We looked among the toys for suitable mothers and babies, and came up empty. But I had found this doll at the thrift store when I was pregnant with Fox and I had her in the box of special things I have from their babyhood: snips of their newborn hair, their first pairs of shoes, tiny hats I knit them, cards people sent us on the occasions of their births, etc. So, we had mother and child. We are still hunting for the partner. All of the other action figures and dolls we have are either very small or very large in comparison, so it may take a few days to get the family set. Or, it may stay mother and child. The boys didn't really seem too attached to one idea or the other, though they had fun making tiny Batman and Army men pretend to be scared of giant mother and child.

I wanted to make the shelter and star and cradle, but they had more or less moved on, so that was my project. I'm OK with that. They gave me run-by pointers on how the shelter might be designed, and Woody added the greenery at the end.