filling the well

Last weekend was the first weekend camp with other Canterbury Unschooling families
(I am uncomfortable with the term "unschooling" but more on that later).
This idea of weekend gatherings was seeded at the Open Space I ran back in July. 

The intention of holding the Open Space was to explore ways to grow community with families on a similar path of life-learning as our own. Earlier this year as I was working on bringing into focus the vision for my family, I realised we needed to seek out other self-designing families who wanted to build deeper, long-term relationships with us. I have always been inspired by a vision of a shared community of families to grow our children up within. 
Disconnected nuclear families in the 'burbs seems to be a disease of modern life and not how we imagine humans thrive.
We are interested in thriving.
We connect with where we live, we have friends just down the road and at the same time we want a shared script with others who live without school and who trust their children's ability to learn. It's not that we don't want diversity and uniqueness; a spectrum is energising and healthy, but we need a shared story and a similar horizon  for a whole-hearted community to thrive. 
And that is what we found during the weekend.
For me, it was like drinking from a deep well.
My well had pretty much dried up over the last couple of months. Last weekend we tapped into a source of fresh connection, enough to fill the well.
We have returned tired and inspired.
I have returned with renewed hope after a couple of months where my faith in the goodness of life has been sorely tested.

It reminds me that the opportunity to grow community is always open to us and within community we can lean into the love and experience of others, sink into the ease of the common language and feel inspired by other's stories and gifts.
It reminds me that whatever we focus on thrives.
Thank you to those families that were there and are reading :)

For those in the area, we are planning four of these gatherings next year. Email for details.
For those around Aotearoa, we also are in the planning stages of a South Island Unschooling Camp in February 2013.  Go here for details, register and get connected.


  1. i’m glad you are finding (making!) that community you need.

    looking forward to hearing your thoughts on the term “unschooling.” :)

  2. Thanks for the prompt. I've begun the post but it seems it might take a while to write ;) Keeping it simple can sometimes feel like the hardest thing.