Unschool

Life is about rhythm. We vibrate, our hearts are pumping blood. We are rhythm machines, that’s what we are.*
Mickey Hart

Life-balance is a part of rhythm,
Rhythm is a bigger experience than balance,
Yet through different schools, especially the school of life,
We have lost our rhythm,
Or been unable to find it.

M. C. Richards points us towards the gift we want to bring into the world,
The product of our rhythm,
Rhythm that is creative freedom:

My hunger for freedom is my hunger for myself, for my creative initiative.**

This is our crystallising intent for which we must dive deeply,
Opening mind, heart and will,
Yet these are strange words to us,
Unknown, unlearned:

It is often said that education and training are the keys to the future … but a key can be turned in two directions. Turn it one way and you lock resources away. Turn it the other way and your release resources and give people back to themselves.^

These words are those of educational reformer Ken Robinson
who offers three helpful steps to teach into the rhythm of our creativity,
Providing us with three self-steps:

There are three related tasks in teaching for creativity: encouraging, identifying and fostering.^

By encouragement I mean to be open to the encouraging
that there is more to learn about yourself,
To let your barriers and resistances fall.
By identifying I mean to pay attention to all of the more about you includes,
To be willing to take the time to discover.
By fostering I mean to make experimental spaces,
To explore and to develop.

Unschool and unlearning is not about forgetting all we have learned so far
but to treat it differently, more adeptly,
In a way that doesn’t throw us off-balance
or set us into an arhythmic spin:

re-examine all you’ve been told at school or church or in any book; dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines^^.

*Mickey Hart, quoted in Bessel van der Kolk’s The Body Keeps the Score;
**From M. C. Richards Centering;
^From Ken Robinson’s Out of Our Minds;
^^From Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass.

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