Are We Living a Second Best Kind of Unschooling Life?

Are We Living a Second Best Kind of Unschooling Life? Do we look at other unschoolers' lives with romantic eyes?

Sometimes I wonder: Are we living a second best kind of unschooling life?

Perhaps we should move to a farm or a large property. We could grow organic vegetables, have chooks, a goat, and even a donkey. Maybe we could get a milking cow. And what about a horse? We could ride bikes, go off-grid, and recycle everything. We could spin wool, bottle fruit, and make our own soap. The kids could swim in the river (or dam), chop wood, and run free. We’d have few neighbours and no noise except for the chuckling of the kookaburras and the screeching of the sulphur-crested cockatoos.

Do you ever dream about living a slower life, about being self-sufficient, about stepping outside mainstream society? Perhaps you already do this. I know there are a lot of unschoolers living an alternate existence. You see, I’ve been reading a few blogs.

And I’ve been dreaming…

Perhaps things would be perfect if only we could also live a free back-to-nature unschooling life.

But my dreams never last. I know that I’m looking at unschooling with romantic eyes. You see, we once left our home in town. We packed up and ran off to a 100-acre property in the bush. There were dams of fish, a mob of kangaroos, and space to breathe. Sound good? Yes, but things didn’t turn out as we’d imagined.

Some people are meant to live on farms or in yurts or in recycled houses. But we’re not. The life we’re living in our conventional house on an average sized block of land is perfect for us. It’s not a second best kind of unschooling life at all.

In this week’s podcast, episode 84, I talk about:

  • How we can look at both school and unschooling with romantic eyes
  • Moving to a yurt, or a farm, or travelling around Australia in a campervan
  • Our experience on a 100-acre fish farm
  • What our kids need if they are to be world-changers
  • The latest blog and Elvis news

Show Notes

Blog post
Raising World-Changers… second-generation unschooling

Unschooling blogs
Yurt in the Hollow
Ben Hewitt

The Not So Proper Unschoolers Facebook Group
My Stories of an Unschooling Family Facebook Page

My podcast
Podcast Player with all episodes in my blog’s sidebar
on iTunes
on Podbean
How to Write a review or leave a rating in the iTunes Store or App Store
My podcast blog posts

Podcast music
60’s Quiz Show by Podington Bear(CC BY-NC 3.0)

Images: These photos were taken close to home.

Do you dream of living a back-to-nature kind of life? Perhaps you already do live on a farm or somewhere wild and adventurous. Do you grow vegetables? Are you off-grid? And what do you think about yurts? 


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    • Alexis
    • November 2, 2016

    Thanks for sharing this one, Sue. It was just what I needed to hear today 🙂 I’ve been wasting a lot of time worrying about what I think my kids SHOULD be experiencing and what kind of life I SHOULD be living. We are homebodies and really, what’s wrong with that? There is a place in this world for everybody. So thanks again for the reminder that trusting, respecting and loving unconditionally goes an awful long way in parenting and in all our other relationships too!

      • Sue Elvis
      • November 7, 2016

      HI Alexis,

      I was so pleased to see your comment. The very first on my new WordPress blog!

      You’re homebodies too? We understand each other! Yes, we should be who we are. Nothing wrong with that at all. I love our life at home and wouldn’t change it for anything.

      Thank you so much for listening to my podcast and for stopping by!

  1. Reply

    Hi Sue!
    Thanks for the awesome podcast! To address your question towards the end about why folks would listen to podcasts: I think with so few unschoolers, and with an infinite number of ways to carry out unschooling, that every new perspective is valuable! Plus, I enjoy the way you tell stories!

    A movie was recently released in the ‘States titled “Captain Fantastic.” It’s about a family of unschoolers who have gone off the grid, but who must return to society at least briefly. Have you seen it? It put me in mind of moving up to the mountains. Maybe one day we will, but for the moment, we’re having a great time in the city!

    1. Reply


      I’m glad you like my stories. I’ve been pondering multipotentiality. I have many interests, but what’s the theme connecting them all? I think it’s story telling. This is the way I enjoy exploring different topics. I’ve noticed you like story telling too. I’ve just read your latest one. Thank you for telling us more about your Dad adventure!

      I hadn’t heard about ‘Captain Fantastic’ but now I’m going to find out more. Thanks for sharing!

      1. Reply

        Somehow the last ‘a’ in Dada didn’t actually appear!

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