You may have heard of functional medicine -a medical practice or treatments that focus on optimal functioning of the body and its organs, usually involving systems of holistic or alternative medicine. Well I’m here to tell you that we need a rise in functional education.
What Is Functional Education?
Functional education, like functional medicine, encompasses a “whole body” approach. When we assess body/mind/soul in relation to our health and wellbeing, we are looking to address not just a symptom, but a root cause.
Our concept of education is segmented. Like a cardiologist, gastroenterologist and obstetrician all focuses on one specific area, we tend to lump education into subjects. We address history in 1st period, Spanish in second, and math in 3rd period. We specify that learning happens in a fixed location at a fixed time. And when you graduate, from then on, education is optional.
I believe we’re missing the mark. In my family, we unschool. And boy are we going to dig into what that means in the upcoming blogs and podcast series. But right now, I want to tell you what that boils down to for our family, and why I think it IS the right way…even if unschooling is not for your family.
Unschooling, and the one thing that is right for EVERY family
Unschooling simply means, to me, that we are life-long learners. That’s what this is about. It’s functional education. It means this:
We don’t have subjects. We don’t test and assess and put parameters on what education looks like in our home. We are simply open to learning, every. single. day.
So this is what I’m going to do. As we break down what it means to be a life-long learner in Season 5 of the Mama Says Namaste Podcast, I want you to reach out to me with your stories, questions, and comments.
The Many Layers of Learning
This is not just for unschoolers. This is for any family who desires to foster a love of learning in your home.
This is for anyone and everyone who desires to remain teachable in life.
Over the next few weeks, we are going to go even deeper in how to be a life long learner, breaking down what unschooling – and learning – looks like in our house as well as how to foster a love of learning for everyone in your family. These are the topics we will discuss:
Fun: What is “education”: “The world is our school, and everyone is our teacher.”
Unschooling: Education Overhaul (Deschooling and what that means)
- Reframe your thinking
- Define “learning”
- Lose the lingo
Not a quitter: The importance of “failure” in our lives – and how to step back from being your child’s savior
Credibility: What qualifies you as a teacher…or, why you are a guide. We’ll address authoritative vs. authoritarian parenting
Thirst for knowledge: When the student is ready (delight led learning) – be the guide, not the teacher
Inspired learning: The ongoing process of functional education – how to become a life-long learner and be the example
Own your attitude: Learning about interpersonal relationships, socialization, and personality snapshots and how learning is more about a mindset than a process; discovering how to instill a growth mindset.
Notice the opportunity: Opportunities to learn and grow are all around us. We often learn more through interaction and play with our surroundings. What is right under your own nose that will foster this?
Share with me – what are your stories, questions, and desires regarding functional education in your home?
I’d love your feedback to share on the podcast – and of course, stay tuned, and hop over to the Mama Says Namaste Facebook Community to keep up the conversations!