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10 things worth doing this summer
In our house we believe that summer is a time for unschooling — a time for living and learning outside of the classroom, a time for self-guided education, for slow learning, and also a time for plain old rest and relaxation and play.
In that spirit, here is a list of 10 things I think we could all do to unschool ourselves this summer:
Read recklessly. Read promiscuously. Let your books talk to each other. Read at Whim. Treat your books as toys. Read trash! Read stuff you don’t think you’re supposed to! Go to the library and take wild chances on stuff you’ve never heard of. (Don’t read at all if you don’t feel like it! Play Zelda ’til your eyeballs fall out.)
Take up an old-fashioned hobby! Hobbies are very important. The sillier the better. (As Oliver Burkeman writes in Four Thousand Weeks, ”In order to be a source of true fulfillment, a good hobby probably should feel a little embarrassing; that’s a sign you’re doing it for its own sake.”)
Grow something! Take up gardening, or apprentice yourself to a gardener, or just visit a botanical garden or a flower center. Gardening provides us great anti-technocratic metaphors for our creative work.
Borrow a kid. (Lots of parents in the summer are looking for babysitters and cool aunties and uncles!) Take them to the movies or have the kid lead you through a museum or just hang out and make some art. If you are stuck, they will help you get unstuck.
Sleep in and take a lot of naps! Slow down. Give in to idleness and rest. Do nothing for as long as possible! Practice keeping a sabbath — take one day a week off from work, or social media, or whatever stresses you out.
Travel! Get out of town! (But remember that travel doesn’t relieve your problems, it throws them into relief.)
Get to water. Water is magical! Swim in an ocean. Float in the pool. Take a long bath. (I do most of my great reading for the year while in the pool.)
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