Child-led? Problem...

In June, 2013, in a discussion of sleep and parenting and bed, someone wrote:

"From the start we have told her that there is no boss in our house."

I wrote something brief, and Colleen wrote something wonderful:

Honestly, there should be a boss. A kind boss, but someone with the last word, in a situation. Being a child's partner is better than saying "we're all equal and nobody knows or says more than another." The land lord, the city, social services... none of them will want to hear that you felt your child was as much responsible for things as you were.—Sandra Dodd

Colleen Prieto wrote:
****why are people freaking out about Lotus letting us know when she is ready for bed.****

I think if a child says they're ready for bed and then a parent helps them get to bed and off to sleep, that's awesome! But my son is 10, and I still don't always wait for him to tell me he's ready for bed—instead, as the night gets late, as I notice him slowing down, yawning, looking sleepy, etc., I ask him if he's ready to head to sleep. Sometimes he says yes—sometimes he says "in a couple minutes"—and other times (like last night) he says something like "I'm tired but I'm REALLY having fun on Minecraft—so in a while, ok?" That's an easy thing to say "ok" to as he's happy and enjoying himself 🙂

And it all works out well, because he knows his dad and I are not trying to get him to go to bed for random purposes. He trusts us enough to know that if we suggest bed it's because we're on his side and we want him to be happy (he's much happier when he's well-rested 🙂)—and he knows that if he's not ready, we won't force the issue. In my mind, partnering with kids isn't about having them be In Charge—and it isn't about having parents be In Charge—it's working together, with the more experienced partner (the parent) taking the initiative to help days (and nights!) be successful and happy. 🙂

Pam Sorooshian wrote about the problem of calling unschooling "child-led learning" here.

The idea of giving a child "power" (or freedom) can confuse people who are trying to understand how to create a stable, long-lasting partnership.

Building an Unschooling Nest

Being your child's partner

Precisely How To Unschool

Misconceptions about Unschooling