Saturday, August 30, 2014

Unschooling to School: How it All Began

We got the call at 11:53 AM, just as we were cleaning up from a Big Giant Open-Air Sleepover. "So Taliesin's funding has been approved." I had barely slept the night before. Between the party prep, three days of frantic form-filling, funding-searching, and assessment-doing for a last-ditch attempt to get Tali into our local independent school, finding out suddenly that our one remaining pet, Amber, has a growing tumour in her face and trying to work my mind - again - around the word 'palliative'... I took a moment to come to terms with the words: "Taliesin's funding has been approved."

Half an hour later, Tali and I were in the car in the ferry lineup, with supply lists for grade 7 and for the 3-day orientation camping trip. Technically we have the weekend to buy these supplies, but who wants to be driving around town on Labour Day Weekend?! So we tried to do it all on Friday evening. We were in shock - what can I say.

As I stood looking stunned in the chaotic, rummaged-through school supply section, I saw Tali excitedly slipping extra pens into the basket along with his many other "supplies". And a scientific calculator. He was in heaven. I was debating how badly he'd be looked upon for having coloured erasers instead of white; for having two 2-inch binders instead of one 3-inch binder. Then, as we literally ran between stores, flying in the doors and begging for fleece pants and hoodies (the list explicitly says no cotton for the camping trip), and getting more and more bewildered with every shop we entered (we normally buy clothing second-hand), I realized in a flash that I now know EXACTLY WHAT PRETTY WOMAN FELT LIKE!! Whatever her name was. Apparently my highschool days have well and truly re-entered my mind. How embarrassing.

Tali got used cleats AND new hiking boots AND new runners, yesterday. And 20 pencils and 10 pens and 3 packages of 8 binder-dividers, and... It was the unschooler's Pretty Woman moment for sure. We blew the bank, and we still have to find money for our portion of the actual tuition. Wow.

We're still in shock.

How on earth did this happen?? Three days earlier the head of the school looked me square in the eyes and asked "Are you sure? Because this IS a school." And I said yes.

I said yes.

My son, who has never attended school, begins grade 7 on Tuesday.
All of a sudden, from unschooling to an International Bacchelauriate World School.
The school where MY BROTHER teaches!!!
We have to buy a green v-neck sweater.

And I said yes.

I'll report back eventually.
This fell on our heads like a rain of meteors.
There is going to be one hell of a good unschooling-to-school story coming up. I can feel it.


  1. Exciting times ahead! I can't wait for the follow-up story. Such (at fist glance) contradictions in life always end up being the most interesting events in life.

  2. Wow, exciting indeed! I love it when people have opportunities to transform themselves and throw off the labels.


Your comment will appear after it is approved. This can take a while!