But What About High School? And College?

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

Unschooling high school feels like the biggest leap of faith so far in our homeschooling journey. If we, The Parents, fail our kids here, then we have failed them for life – or so it feels. I have mostly been happy and confident to facilitate child-led learning over the last 12 or so years, but while standing on the peripheral of their experiences that crescendo of worry has been building up in me as my eldest child got closer to the typical high school graduation age.

For many years I had hoped that my kids would want to eventually try formal schooling, especially high school, as I have heard that many homeschooled kids do. While my second child is pining to do so (but doesn’t currently have the needed language skills to jump in) my first son, Badier, has never had an interest. So, as far as I could see…

View original 614 more words

Weekend Update: Chores, Socialization and Fried Food – the need to knows of unschooling


These days most of my blogging (ok, all my blogging!) is happening over here on our family blog – Blog of NineFeatured Image -- 1984

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

We are lagging a bit on our posts, already, and I have some guilt about that (I have so much mama guilt in general though, so let’s ignore it), but the kids are doing a lot of stuff and that’s partially why we haven’t coordinated a new post. Here’s what our typical unschooling life is looking like this week:

Big Boys Suggest: Badier and Zak finally looked over our lil blog here, thanks guys! Zak says it looks very professional, thanks WordPress! And then they proceeded to bemoan why we suggested that butt video from Vsauce especially after mentioning the cooler one about everyone jumping on the earth at the same time. Then the Big Boys did this thing they occasionally do, they proceeded to check in with their little sisters to see what they are watching these days. We could call this interest of theirs control-freakishness or we…

View original 974 more words

Why Do We Unschool?


Here’s the latest over on my new ‘family’ blog ;)

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

Not So WaldorfyWhen I first decided to homeschool it felt like I needed to take in a tremendous amount of new information and very quickly. I suppose like many people I thought that I needed to be an expert of some sort to do it, so I read a lot about homeschooling methods in a very short time. I chose Waldorf-style. I liked it, it jelled with me – using crayons and drawing to learn the alphabet, as well as using other natural materials to learn with, which I have long preferred for myself, and spending a lot of time in and revering nature – this all sounded like good and fun stuff. Homeschooling was going to be fun! We started taking parent-child classes at the local Waldorf school and we both got a lot out of them. He got to bake and play, I got to study a teacher implementing Waldorf…

View original 465 more words

Should Husbands Attend Their Wives’ Labor?

Here’s a thing I wrote for OnIslam.net:

“It’s bad for him to see you like that,” was the vague reasoning that potential care providers explained why my husband would be banned from the birth of our third child if I hired them.

When I responded that he had already seen my first two labors (and obviously he had been able to continue to reproduce, if that’s what they meant) I was shrugged off, the practitioners’ policies remained firm.

Ultimately my husband and I prematurely left our temporary residence in Morocco and returned to the US to have another homebirth. Later I would learn that barring men from attending their wives’ labor is a common practice in many Muslim-majority countries, though for varying reasons and none being evidenced-based.

Will it traumatize him?…

Please read the rest here.

Zak Sketches While You Sleep


Come by and check out our new family blog…

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

Yes, we don’t have bedtimes for the kids. Why should we? They don’t have to be up for school in the morning. And we all know about all those studies on teens and early classes and needing more sleep and how stressed they are because of schools ignoring all these findings –right? So the little ones go to sleep when we, the parents, do which if Baba stays up later they stay up with him, but I am really done with the day by 10 pm even if I’m just reading in bed after that. And the bigger ones go to sleep whenever they do, wherever they do. This can and does cause problems with them not being around to help sometimes during midday, (which felt super exasperating during Ramadan!) but we work with that challenge just as plenty of families have to work with, “Go to bed… go to…

View original 214 more words

Zaynab Crafts: Paper


Zaynab’s turn on our new family blog – “Blog of Nine” – please check us out!

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

Like many homeschooling families we have a lot of books, especially Usborne and DK Eyewitness books- those are, like, homeschooling gold. It seemed kind of easier for me to strew (bonafide unschooling method) when we were more into paperbooks, and I am still tinkering with how to catch the kids attention with e-reading stuffs. I usually email the eldest things I think that he should read and have been trying to start a wishlist or something similar with the nearly 14 year old. The fun thing for me about strewing paper books was, of course the shopping ,but I also got to pick out materials on subjects of interest to me, some of which I hadn’t explored before. The drawback was that some of the material languished. Or so I thought, but maybe having nine kids is enough diversity to catch someone’s attention with anything…

We had a paper-crafting book…

View original 255 more words

Amine Suggests: Vsauce


Have started a family blog, you know like with the whole family of nine blogging in one spot. Here’s our first post!

Originally posted on Blog of Nine:

Amine says “Reading isn’t my favorite thing,” but collecting information still is, so he uses other means – like a lot of video watching and question asking. Come to think of it, one of the first life hacks I learned from my kids was to use Google images to search for information. You can just skip that pesky reading stuff and go straight to images that match the ideas you are seeking out.  Novel, eh?* Nowadays they video search nearly everything. Of course I worry about the content my kids are imbibing, and I try to do more than just peek at their histories time to time. A lot of the content is problematic. Some of it I really enjoy. Then there is the macabre struggle.

I remember loving Ripley’s Believe or Not and the Guinness Book of World Records as a kid. Yes, I was one…

View original 166 more words

Having A Large Family

Muslim Mummy

While Muslim Mummy is away, I wrote a not-so-little guest blog post musing on having a whole bunch of kids:

It surprises me how many Muslims respond negatively at my having a large family. Worse is when they nearly reprimand me, demanding to know if I am “done” at six kids. I thought we all knew this one:

Wealth and children are an adornment of the worldly life. But the enduring good deeds are better to your Lord for reward and better for [one’s] hope. (Surah Al Kahf: 46)

I’m not into name brands. Having kids is mything. Well, I have a few dunya-ey things that I really like to do, but raising my pack of kids is my main thing and not only do I give it a lot of my time and consideration, I do it pretty well and get a fair amount of satisfaction from it. Alhumdulillah. Over the years I have found that there are a lot of benefits (not just for me) to having a big family. Here are just a few:

  • Learning to labor

Parenting begins with birth, and if you are birthing your own kids you may not realize what a crisis modern birthing practices are going through in the US (and just about everywhere) until you are actually in labor…

Please shoot over to Muslim Mummies to read the rest. And then get all wrapped up and inspired in her Project 365 posts.