Monday, July 16th, 2018

Why Parenting Could Actually Be The Highest Un-Degreed Form Of Education

Published on June 6, 2017 by   ·   No Comments Pin It

If parents could be awarded or acknowledged for all the effort put in and knowledge gained throughout parenthood, surely we’d be recognised with the same brilliance of those who achieve high acclaim at university level, wouldn’t we?

Recently my son started school and this experience has challenged me in many ways, mostly because a lot of the typical school structure does not align with my gentle parenting philosophies. So, I’ve been considering other forms of education, such as homeschooling and unschooling. (This is article is not solely focussed on schooling, I’ll save that for another time, bear with me.) Numerous blogs, articles, support groups, TED talks, documentaries and one homeschooling course later, I’ve come to the realisation that I have been unschooling my way through parenting! (Unschooling is a self-led education and philosophy. The difference between homeschooling and unschooling is basically, curriculum versus unstructured/natural learning.) I believe Parenting could actually be the highest un-degreed form of education we can provide ourselves, if we are open to it! What we can potentially learn through parenting is an endless wealth of knowledge.

My Doctorate in Gentle Parenting: A lifelong journey.

My Doctorate in Gentle Parenting: A lifelong journey.

If a Doctorate of Gentle Parenting could be accomplished, what might it look like, on paper?…

What have I learned in the last 6 years, since becoming a mother?… Be prepared, I’m only starting at the beginning of my parenting education!…

  • Certificate I, II & III in Procreation
  • Certificate I, II & III in Pregnancy
  • Bachelor’s & Master’s Degree of Birth
  • Bachelor’s Degree of Pain in Miscarriage
  • Certificate I & III in Naming: Includes decision management for numerous names
  • Bachelor’s & Master’s Degree in Breastfeeding
  • Diploma in Baby Care: How to change a nappy (diaper), clothe a baby, wash a baby
  • Bachelor’s & Master’s Degree in Baby Comfort
  • Certificate I & II in Advice Assessment: How to take advice, or refuse it (politely)
  • Certificate IV in Safe Co Sleeping
  • Diploma of Safe Baby Wearing
  • Certificate II in Baby Led Weaning
  • Graduate Certificate in Understanding Baby’s Needs: How to understand a baby’s cries and cues for feeding, cuddling, playtime, nappy changing or sleeping
  • Bachelor in Family Relationships Management: Includes managing all relationships between siblings, mother and children, husband and children, husband and wife
  • Graduate Diploma in Understanding Toddler Needs: How to have realistic expectations, setting limits respectfully, introduction to empathy
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Toddler Management: Includes management of big emotions and feelings (parent and child’s), parent role-modelling the desired behaviour, parental self-control
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Self-Care
  • Graduate Certificate in Time Management
  • Master’s Degree in 1980’s Childhoods: Includes the long-term issues, understanding why, and moving forward
  • Master’s Degree in Empathy
  • Master’s Degree in Respect
  • Master’s Degree in Compassion
  • Master’s Degree in Connection
  • Doctorate in Gentle Parenting, ongoing….

I’ll never learn all there is to know about my children, about myself, about my family, about managing and maintaining healthy relationships.

No elite University Degree at the most distinguished University in the Universe, could teach us enough. This is the type of education only we can self-direct, or unschool ourselves through, the best WE can. I’m not by any means, undermining those who have done parenting courses or have received parent coaching, or who’ve been educated at University level- in fact, quite the opposite because part of unschooling is leading yourself into education because YOU are passionate about it and have a vested interest in it. The unschooling philosophy supports self-directed learning.

Surround yourself with people who encourage you and support you on your journey- people who have knowledge and experience to guide you positively. Be open to learning from your children! THEY are our best teachers! Trust your children. As with unschooling, a big part of gentle parenting is natural progression and learning to trust yourself!

My own experience of self-directed learning, through parenting education and being creative, has led me to become a soon-to-be self-published gentle parenting advocate! Please check out my up-coming Gentle Parenting Memes Book, currently featured on Kickstarter;

Kirsty Lee is a passionate advocate for peaceful and respectful parenting in Australia. Married, with two children, she uses her life’s experiences to help others on their parenting journey. Kirsty also creates memes for gentle parenting inspiration and children’s rights on Facebook and Instagram.


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