I may sometimes allude to the fact that I share my life with children. And while they fill my world with joy I don’t want to harp on about them. I can’t imagine growing up in the digital age and having every little success or failure plastered all over the interweb by my loving mom. Thankfully, back in the day mothers were way too busy to engage in banal status updates and children were seen more as a duty than inspirational blog fodder.
It’s not that I don’t cherish them it’s just that I don’t want to be typecast as a mummy blogger and alienate the demographic that choose to steer clear of the mental, physical and fiscal cliff towards which offspring seem determined to drive their parents. I have born and bred two daughters – no biggie – they are long out of nappies anyway so I’ll let them make their own online faux pas. But did I mention they are incredibly intelligent, gorgeous human beings?
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Carl Honore, author of Under Pressure – How the epidemic of hyper-parenting is endangering childhood. Carl has some sage advice for would be tiger-mums about letting children just be children. (Cue the beautiful Jonsi.) It's all about the slow movement which includes education. Slow education lets children explore via an emergent curriculum that is lateral not linear. And slow schools don’t hothouse or teach to exams - I’m looking at you NAPLAN!
So I’ve decided to take a more hands-off approach to parenting. I’ve always encouraged individuality in my daughters – not that they needed it – and given them freedoms that some parents may feel unwise, but I feel they need to be able to think for themselves and learn from mistakes. Of course they know they can always call home and although it sounds counterintuitive, (my new favourite word), like slow education, hopefully a bit of freedom will help establish sound boundaries for learning and growth.