Wednesday, 20 July 2016

The Best Part

This summer has been relatively dry.  Dry enough that the grass on my front lawn is a disappointing shade of dead but in the back yard, where the lawn is shaded with large trees, it is green. The kind of green that does not come from newly laid sod but from dandelion leaves, creeping charlie and clover.  And since there hasn’t been enough rain the few stubborn blades of grass have not grown high enough to warrant a pass of the mower.  So my backyard has swaths of flowering clover. 
And that clover is host to hundreds of honey bees.

So much good can come from just letting it be. 
Some would call that lazy. But truly, let the lawn go in the spring and it will be covered in dandelions and swarming with bees and the first butterflies and beetles and flies. Then the clover over the summer and voila! Nature happily taking up residence in your very own backyard. No intervention and manipulation required, just restraint from weeding and feeding and mowing and spraying. ‘Cause, really, all that would be left are manicured but barren blades of grass with literally no life in it.

Much like what Charlotte Mason calls Masterly Inactivity.  No need for manicured lesson plans and long lectures but just living books and things in the hands of a child and voila! Ideas and questions will sprout to be examined and narrated. Mason says, “We ought to do so much for our children, and are able to do so much for them, that we begin to think everything rests with us and that we should never intermit for a moment our conscious action on the young minds and hearts about us. Our endeavours become fussy and restless. We are too much with our children, ‘late and soon.’ We try to dominate them too much, even when we fail to govern, and we are unable to perceive that wise and purposeful letting alone is the best part of education.”

Purposeful letting alone allows your yard, your children’s education, an opportunity to be rife with life.

Not fussing nor restless but watching bees pollinate while lying in the grass.