I’m currently finishing a curriculum for the Heritage Foundation to go with their book, The Heritage Guide to the Constitution. As usual, when I’m finishing a project, the children are left to do more learning on their own – basically “unschooling” for a few weeks.
Our eight-year-old, Daniel, wants to be a writer like me. He frequently writes stories, makes little books, and tells stories to his younger sister and older siblings. I guess he has decided that it’s about time to make some money from all his hard work and creativity as yesterday I heard him telling Hannah that he wouldn’t tell her any more stories unless she gave him all her money.
Hannah initially agreed and went to get her money. I could see her in the bathroom counting it and I think she must have quickly figured out that she wouldn’t have any money left if she gave it all to him for one story.
She came back into the kitchen and told Daniel that she would not give him all her money, but she would be willing to pay him one penny for each story. Daniel said that wasn’t enough and he wanted ten cents. Hannah said that was too much and offered two. He asked for five. Finally, they settled on three cents per story.
All afternoon, I watched Daniel tell Hannah stories and, true to her word, she paid him three cents for each story he told her. (She had a large collection of pennies.)
Last night after Chris came home from work, Daniel and Hannah were sitting on our bed and he was still making up stories for her. When I explained to Chris what was going on, he said he wasn’t sure if he should want to punish Daniel or be proud of him for his ingenuity. “At least they are learning how the free market system works,” he said at last, finally settled on being proud.
So the next time you need to take some time off your “official” homeschool work, don’t fret over the fact that your children’s brain cells are going to die. Give them a chance to surprise you! They might just come up with some activities you never would have thought of … like telling each other stories, practicing counting money, and even spending time together enjoying one another’s company.