Day two of classes complete and everything is still going well! Online classes are so much more efficient. I know a lot of people have issues with online and remote learning. As a lifelong autodidact that typically had to teach myself everything anyway from childhood until present, I'll admit I prefer this method for information-based classes (I prefer labs and field work with minimal lecturing for experiential learning).
The issue is that self directed learning, as well as working from home, is an endurance sport. Few people can simply start doing it at full efficiency right out of the gate. Most people are trained from a young age to work for others and do as they are directed, so it is hard to stay focused, figure out what info we need to absorb, and keep on task. As we build up our work endurance, it becomes easier and we develop methods to help the process.
My eldest son called me up yesterday to thank us for homeschooling/unschooling him. He's living in a house with his partner and 2 roommates. He and one other is working from home and taking classes from home, and the other two are only taking classes from home. His housemates are having trouble, he said, but he's not. He thinks it's because his education was self directed for most of his life. He's an education major that is interested in alternatives to the mainstream education model (like Reggio Emilia and Montessori teaching methods), so he is intrigued in figuring out how to distill the ideas of homeschooling/unschooling into a public school scenario.
I wish I knew exactly how we conferred this ability through 10 years of education (he started college at 16, so never had a grade 11 or 12). I think it was just a side effect. We only skipped public school because we had bad, overcrowded local schools and couldn't afford private. I focused on STEM education, because science is what I knew. We unschooled most subjects but math and early reading, which means the kids chose their subjects of study and developed their own study schedules, we were simply there to provide materials, answer questions, and provide guidance. Somehow it worked. Perhaps we were lucky. I really don't know!
Anyway, here is the good from the last day :)
* More writers must be working from home, because available work becomes thin after 9 am even though the company I contract for has drummed up more business. That's okay, the sun is coming up earlier and I am can't help but wake up with the sun, so I've been getting up with the dawn bird chorus at 5:15 am. Let's me get most of my work done before everyone else wakes up and picks over the day's available work!
* I took advantage of the currently free Down Dog yoga app again yesterday for a 30 minute session. I love this app, and will be sorry when I have to cancel it in July (when the free period for students ends. Non-students can use it for free through May 1st, I believe).
* The boy-child and I went for a 3 hour ramble along the creek. I foraged for stinging nettles to dry for tea while he poked things with sticks, climbed trees, got on his knees to examine plants and insects, and did all the things that a nearly 15 year old boy should be doing in the woods.
* I came home with a foraging bag not just filled with nettles, but also overflowing with interesting items the kid wanted to put under the microscope, a collection of small twigs for the rocket stove he wants to build, and some interesting looking wood chunks he plans to carve. Shopping in nature?
* My partner and I had to go out to pick up prescriptions. We decided to pair it with a coastal walk when we noticed that there was only one other car in the access parking lot. A few people were out, but it was easy to leave 20+ feet between everyone, and the fresh salt air on a sunny day was a welcome respite! (As we left, people were showing up with lawn chairs, likely to watch the sunset, a competitive sport in the PNW. Note to self: don't come down to the coast for the sunset during a pandemic!)
* A simple dinner of seitan "chicken" parm and a tossed salad. It's a favorite that I don't make often enough!
* My university contacted everyone to let them know they would be reimbursing some fees since classes are online, so I have a couple of hundred dollars to put back into savings. Further, my Salish sea class also decided to reimburse fees, so that is another $70 for savings. We can now go 6 months if necessary with no income and few changes to our current lifestyle if it comes to that, but I hope we are able to continue working and padding our savings.
* Bumblebees! We saw lots of bumblebees, those giant clumsy teddy bears of the insect world, doing their jobs yesterday. I love bumbles, so fuzzy and yet so earnest in their work!
Stay healthy and happy friends, there are better days ahead, but that doesn't mean we can't make these days better, as well!