The Joy and Love of Living an Unschooling Way of Life


Last Friday, my girls and I had a wonderful morning filming Imogen’s latest music video on the banks of a local river. On our way home, we couldn’t help expressing our gratitude for the life we lead. While other people are going to school and work, we’re off on our unschooling adventures. Sometimes joy washes over us. Aren’t we so very fortunate to live this way of life?

Occasionally I hear of unschooling teenagers who want to go to school. “Why would they want to do that?” ask my girls in horror. Swap unschooling for schooling? We just don’t understand. Recently, we pondered this topic and came up with some ideas, and I captured our thoughts in a couple of videos. Of course, we’re not unschooling teenagers who want to go to school. Our thoughts might not be correct. But we’re hoping they’re interesting.

I also talk about the topic of kids wanting to go to school in this week’s podcast. As I began speaking, I thought this would be the main theme of the episode. But when I got to the end, I realised that it was the joy and love of living an unschooling way of life that was at the heart of everything I said.

In this week’s episode, I answer the following questions:

  • What was it like recording Imogen’s latest music video with an unexpected audience?
  • If we are experiencing dark and difficult times, is there hope? Will joy return to our days?
  • Isn’t it wonderful watching kids working with confidence and skill?
  • Why would an unschooling teenager choose to go to school?

I also talk about

  • the joy of living an unschooling way of life
  • our recent videos
  • zombies and running
  • a few resources
  • the joy of living in the moment
  • how I’m going to cope when time moves on and I’m no longer living life as it is today
  • how we all need a feeling of belonging

Show NotesZombies, Books and Movies

Zombies, Run!

Only a few have survived the zombie epidemic. You are a Runner en-route to one of humanity’s last remaining outposts. They need your help to gather supplies, rescue survivors, and defend their home.
And you have another mission — one they don’t know about…

William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doescher

Join us, good gentles, for a merry reimagining of Star Wars: Episode 1 as only Shakespeare could have written it. The entire saga starts here, with a thrilling tale featuring a disguised queen, a young hero, and two fearless knights facing a hidden, vengeful enemy.

’Tis a true Shakespearean drama, filled with sword fights, soliloquies, and doomed romance . . . all in glorious iambic pentameter and coupled with twenty gorgeous Elizabethan illustrations. Hold on to your midi-chlorians: The play’s the thing, wherein you’ll catch the rise of Anakin!

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies: 3 Book Series

We haven’t read these books, but if you have, we’d love to hear your opinion.

“It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains.” So begins Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, a bold reimagining of Jane Austen’s classic novel. As our story opens, a mysterious plague has fallen upon the quiet English village of Meryton—and the dead are returning to life. Feisty heroine Elizabeth Bennet is determined to wipe out the zombie menace, but she’s soon distracted by the haughty and arrogant Mr. Darcy. What ensues is a delightful comedy of manners with plenty of civilized sparring between the two young lovers—and even more violent sparring on the bloodsoaked battlefield. Complete with romance, heartbreak, swordfights, cannibalism, and thousands of rotting corpses, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies is an audacious retelling of English literature’s most enduring novel.

 Pide and Prejudice and Zombies: Movie

We’re a bit horrified by the thought of Jane Austen being associated with Zombies. Is the movie as bad as we imagine?

Youtube Channels and Videos

Imogen’s Youtube Channel

She’d be thrilled if you subscribed!

Imogen’s Hallelujah video

My Youtube Channel

You could subscribe to my channel too!

My Making Hallelujah: An Unschooling Interview video

Videos about self-directed learning and why kids might choose to go to school:

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

Images: I took these photos on our recent music video shoot. We filmed Imogen singing Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah.

You can find more episodes of my Stories of an Unschooling Family podcast on

and here on my blog.Please feel welcome to comment on this week’s podcast. You could share what you enjoy most about living an unschooling way of life, or give your opinion about Jane Austen and Zombies, or you could just stop by to say hello!

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  1. I very much admire your way of life and hope I can guarantee it as long as possible to my own kids. However, this is very complicated, since we're living in a country with compulsory school attendance… To us this is very difficult situation considered that our lifestyle choices are illegal over here. That is very sad…

    1. Reply

      living a catholic fairytale,

      I'm sorry to hear your country has compulsory school attendance. Yes, that must be very difficult. I asked in my podcast, why would anyone want to go to school when they can unschool? I didn't consider the fact not all families have the same choices as us. Here, we are free to homeschool, it's more difficult to unschool, but there are ways to do it. We are very fortunate.

      I imagine it would be heartbreaking for you to send your kids to school. You said your lifestyle choices are illegal. Are you fighting the system? Some people in our state don't like the registration process so just live quietly and hope no one notices. At times I get frustrated by the registration requirements but at least homeschooling is a legal option for us.

      I hope you are able to keep unschooling and, like us, continue to enjoy a life of love and joy with your children. Perhaps our unschooling experiences will give our families a strong foundation that will endure through any difficult times that might come along.

      Thank you for stopping by and sharing your story. God bless you and your family!

    2. Sue Elvis,

      thank you so much for your kind reply!
      We're not (yet) fighting the system since our children are still very young and that's why they are not obligated to go to school (yet).
      But this day will come and we don't know what we are going to do then. There are families in our country who face this challenge to fight the system and homeschool their kids although it's illegal – and that is very courageous because homeschoolers are harshly prosecuted over here. Homeschooling families are made to pay fines that can easily ruin them or the government takes away their children because their well-being might be threatened by their parents. Parents can also lose custody or even go to jail if they refuse to public school their children.

      That's why lots of homeschooling families decide to leave the country.

      I know it's sad…

    3. Reply

      living a Catholic fairy tale,

      Oh yes, it must take a lot of courage to fight the system. I sometimes wonder what I'd do if the homeschooling laws changed in our country. Would I fight? I think I would as long as my children didn't get hurt in the process. I couldn't bear the thought of them being taken away from me. What suffering that would be for them. It's not right at all. Even though our education system isn't perfect, I'm grateful we have choices and relative freedom.

      I feel so deeply for you and your family. May God bless you and keep your little ones safe.

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