Title: The Art of Strewing
Author: Aadel Bussinger
Publication Date: 2013
Place Acquired: Homeschooling Omnibus 2013
About the author: Aadel is a homeschooling mom of 3 children and married to her high school sweetheart, a “career army man.” Her children have always been homeschooled and her unschooling journey began in 2008 when her family moved into an RV during a military move. You can find Aadel blogging at These Temporary Tents, on Facebook or on Twitter and a few more places.
Describe: After introducing herself and giving a brief explanation of what unschooling is, Aadel explains what strewing it. She explains that it isn’t just something useful for unschoolers but that it is a technique that any parent can learn to introduce new ideas to our children. It is such a simple idea and, yet, there are still some basic questions to answer about it. Questions like: Where do I strew? What can I strew? How do I strew on a budget? What should I avoid when strewing? Aadel answers all of these questions and a few more in her book. She also talks about developing proper expectations (or lack thereof) toward strewing and how to accept the journey your child can take you on if you allow him/her.
Analyze: I loved the layout of this book. It was very simple to follow and Aadel wasted no time in jumping right into the nitty gritty. The book flowed so smoothly from topic to topic that I hardly noticed the chapter changes. It covered all the bases in how to strew in various life areas: physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, and relational. I loved the line, “We strew to get involved, to relate to them, and join them on this grand adventure!” Who can argue with that kind of logic? Using her own experiences and that of other homeschoolers, Aadel walks you through the practicalities of applying the concept of strewing to your family, no matter the circumstances you are currently in.
Evaluate: Although she calls it an instruction manual, I felt like it was more a manual of encouragement to relax and follow the natural path of parenting. Aadel has an uncanny way of delivering all the facts, answering your questions, and telling you that you’re already on the right path, all in a book that can be read in one evening. I especially appreciated her viewpoints on strewing attitude and atmosphere. I know that I can always use the reminder that my children learn more by what I do, and how I live, than by what I say.
Recommendation: Though this book is written with unschoolers in mind, I believe it is something that could be appreciated by anyone with children. As parents, we want to open all the possible doors for our children that we can and strewing is one way to do that. Strewing is something that encourages a parent to get to know their child and get involved in their child’s world. It is about showing your children the proverbial doors and letting them decide whether or not to walk through them. As an added bonus, the parents often rekindle a love of learning in themselves as well.