Last month we had the pleasure of speaking at the Worldschooling Summit, here, in Guanajuato Mexico. I was completely and utterly blown away.
I met very, healthy, and autonomous kids from Australia who’d just arrived from the United Emirates the night before with their family of five. Even though jet lagged, they sat right next to me and asked me “who” I was and where I came from. I found out what books they were reading and how they both loved and felt challenged by living internationally.
Another teen came up to me and expressed how happy she was to be in a “slow travel” groove with her family right now while going to a Catholic school in Columbia run by nuns. Her Mom has arranged it that she gets to go to classes and engage in the extra curricular activities but that she does not need to do the homework OR write any of the tests.
I had the pleasure of sitting, over lunch, with another teen who lives on a permaculture farm in the United States whose family takes extended travel stints all over the world. He stated that he’d like to fashion his life to live more off-grid like many of the other kids attending the conference and that he’s working on going to China for a teen retreat with many of the other youth at the conference travelling solo.
I met a family, like us, who live much of their year in a colonial town near us here in Mexico. Their father built software for music teachers and their mother is a life coach. The kids are self-educated. Last week, while their mom was in the States for a conference, they wanted to prepare all the meals at home. So their Dad helped the three of them to look up recipes online, get the groceries and prepare the meals while he ran his business behind the scenes, available to help them at a moments notice.
In this exercise, they learned about food, shopping, commerce and chemistry and viable necessary life skills. So much about “unschooling” is being able to adapt to the present circumstances and developing one’s inner resources. Many of the kids I met are bi- or tri-lingual. One family with a single Mom from Montreal who live in Mexico speak 5 languages fluently.
All this communing with folks has helped to broaden my knowledge base around what it means to be worldschooled. How this naturally builds empathy, compassion and ingenuity in unfamiliar places with folks who you often must rely on for your safety and purveyance in everyday life. It’s humbling and restores your faith in the goodness of everyday people.
It’s true that I fell head over heels in love with these amazing individuals and that I too have the heart of a worldschooler. I can’t wait to teach more on how to be a successful digital nomad and raise free range kids who’re citizens of the world.