Being the Bridge not the Gatekeeper

Being free to express yourself through mediums such as art, dance, writing, music is the expression of your personality and displays your uniqueness, it helps us to understand ourselves and share that with those around us. It can be difficult to see children expressing themselves because as a culture we are not used to hearing their voices.

To be able to express yourself through any medium without criticism or judgement and to reside in a wider community where diversity is celebrated by its very presence is liberating for its members. To support our children when they choose to wear clothes that mismatch or break gender expectations or are out of fashion; to embrace our children’s need to turn everything we say or hear into a song; to facilitate endless artwork , paintings, models, and craft; to provide music, materials, resources and space for their unique endeavors sets us apart from many western families where fitting in is paramount.

Self expression provides us the tools to connect with people around us as well as express our inner selves. As the main care givers we are able to hear our children’s voice and acknowledge their contribution to our families. Being in an environment where our children are able to speak out and have their opinions validated is energising and creates a space of communal problem solving and partnership between all parties involved.

We need to be the bridge and not the gatekeeper between our children and the world. We need to question what is truly off limits as opposed to what is common practice and advocate for our children’s self expression and autonomy in our families and communities. We need to find supportive communities and like minded peer groups, who will equally value our unique children and embrace their individuality and self expression.

Read more:

Supporting self expression

Learning styles

Living together when everyone is different

Supporting self expression (coming soon)

Published by heiditsteel

Teacher turned Unschooler: passionate about autonomous education and supporting our children's natural inclination towards learning through play.

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