I have always had a dislike for labels. Labels to me seem to either build you up or tear you down. It has just always gotten under my skin. Maybe it was because for the most part as a child I was usually on the tear you down list of labeling. To me labels were a way for people to look down on you. It was a way they could excuse themselves from getting to know the real you. I wonder why we as a society are so dependent on labels to define who we are or what we think. I finally grew up enough to be at a point in my life where the labels people may use for me just don't bother me any more. I don't let others define my self worth I define it myself. Yet I realize some people must need these labels. It is there way of placing all those aspects of life and interaction with others in to neat little boxes in the mind.
I also realized that me the girl that hates labels had been attempting to label what my style of homeschooling is using the labels of others. I am structured , relaxed, interested led, even unschooled. Why did I need to label how we choose to homeschool our children? Was I subconsciously doing this because I wanted people who might happen across my blog to understand me? or understand how we homeschool? Why did I need a label ? It isn't like I have all the homeschooling answers or even know at this point in our journey how we will homeschool three years from now? I try to always be completely honest with others and with myself and to be honest I just don't know what we will end up doing. My children are still pretty young and I am still just learning how to meet their needs the best I can. I am still experimenting with different styles of homeschooling so that I can see what works and what doesn't work. I take note of it all because even our failures have something to teaches us.
I see so many homeschool families say we are Christian, Secular, Unit Based, or Unschoolers. I wonder what makes us decide yep that is our label. We will call our style this or that. I chose to homeschool because I wanted mainly for my kids to learn at their own pace and be able to use resources that worked for them. My kids are completely different people what works for one may very well not work for the other. So why am I spending so much time on labels when I really don't even like them? Why can't I say we homeschool ? No matter what label you do or do not use it seems to me that each and every homeschool family is different. These labels still only give the person learning about your style of homeschooling a very general idea of what goes on in your lives daily. I could say we are secular eclectic homeschoolers, But does that really tell you much. Other than we choose to not use curriculum that is bible based and that we use a wide variety of resources. What are these resources? See it doesn't tell you that. What does a normal day look like using this style? See again it doesn't tell you that. So why do we try to label these styles. Maybe it is because what we really want is acceptance. Acceptance into these tight nit homeschooling communities that have these labels attached. yet the real acceptance should be you accepting that you are perfectly fine in this moment right where you are. That true acceptance comes from those who do not care what label you use. They accept you based on the person you show the world you are.
I really love how the things in my life always seems to make me think about homeschooling and how homeschooling makes me think about other areas of my life,lol I guess that is because I don't separate the two very often. It is all just my life right now. I am just like every other person learning and growing ,doing the best I can today, and hoping to be better at it tomorrow. I think this whole train of thought on labels has made me realize I don't need to label what we are doing. That it is fine if we don't fit into any of the homeschool boxes. That if we choose to be relaxed one day and structured the next that it doesn't effect anyone but us so who cares what we call it. No matter how we homeschool, what we use, or how we compare our journey to others my personal end goal is simply that my children love learning, love life, and love themselves.