Sunday, March 10, 2013

Unschooling--Freedom within Limits

Maria Montessori's philosophy of "freedom within limits" is a wonderful guiding logo for the homeschooling family. Especially for Catholic unschoolers, or unschoolers of any faith tradition that recognizes the vocation of parents as the primary educators of their children, this concept provides the understanding of supplying healthy boundaries within which they can learn and grow. The Catholic Church's magisterium, or teaching office, gives guidance through the catechism and encyclicals to help parents find this balance between respecting children as persons and giving them the freedom to learn according to their own, internal guidance and interests, while outwardly directing them in the way they should go. In a Montessori classroom, the teacher is called a Directress (or a Director if male). If I think of my job this way, as the Directress of our domestic church, providing a rich environment for child-led learning, offering my help in a relaxed manner, then we can have both a flexible structure and the freedom to allow the day to unfold in the simple act of living.

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