I was so excited to interview Roya Dedeaux. Her mother was brave enough to take action when she noticed a disconnect between her children and their interaction, or lack there of in school and learning. Roya says of her mom, "she wasn't one to take big risks, yet she's one to stand out in a crowd." So perhaps initially is was a big surprise to be pulled out of school, but after a short while there was no going back.
As a licensed Marriage and Family Counselor, author and public speaker, Roya Dedeaux hears lots of 'mom' stories. The one she's most proud of is the story of her own mother, Pam. Pam and her siblings as well as her mother, Roya's grandmother, were all educators. Education and learning was always a topic of concern whenever they got together. So when Roya's mom said she wanted to 'unschool' Roya and her sisters, the girls were all very confused.
Roya was just finishing up 4th grade and mom said "I'm not sending you back to school next year." Well you can imagine the confusion amongst the siblings, especially Roya who was going to be starting 5th grade.
Mom was determined to make this work and pleaded, " just trust me for 3 months, if you don't like it, you can go back to school."
I am not an expert by any means, but what I do know is that 'Unschooling' is all about encouraging your child or children to pursue their passions and follow their dreams, whatever they may be. For example, if your child loves animals or marine life, study animals and marine life-take them to zoos and aquariums, do projects-indulge them in their interests. And the same is true for any interest or field of study. "Supporting your children's interests, helps promote better mental health and fulfilled relationships," believes Ms. Dedeaux.
This project of unschooling worked extremely well for my guest. Roya started taking college classes at the age of 13-always taking classes that she was interested in and she had full support from both her father and her mother. She says this was " a celebration of doing things differently, always keeping an open mind about possibilities."
This process encourages and engages kids because these are topics of interest not mandatory subjects of study where tests are required.
The bottom line is that it requires full attention from the parent and your children are happy. Make every adventure and trip a hands on learning experience-as though learning through osmosis.
Roya had no interest in going back to school after a short time and says "my mom gave me to myself forever with her decision to unschool us."
With many many years of higher education, Roya and her sisters are all very happy with the lessons their mom taught them. Roya refers to her mom as "a pioneer," and is so grateful to her mom for the tough decisions that she made when the girls were young.
"Connect With Courage-Practical Ways to Release Fear and Find Joy In The Places Your Kids Take You," is Ms. Dedeaux's most recent book.
I hope you enjoy this episode of SHLTMM.
Roya Dedeaux can be found on Facebook, Instagram and Tik Tok.
LINK FOR ROYA'S BOOK-
"CONNECT WITH COURAGE: Practical ways to work through fear and find joy in the places your kids take you."
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