Parenting, for me, has been a daily learning experience – not all of it very pleasant! I have loads of new skills and knowledge, but I do miss a more intellectual type of learning. I do read a lot and that stimulates my brain, and starting a website has been the steepest learning curve EVER! But, I still feel that extending my brain is one of the things that’s been hard to achieve with young children…
One way to challenge ourselves is with free learning opportunities, they are much harder to come by than when I first started teaching, but there are still some out there. If you are in receipt of certain state benefits in the UK you may be able to access courses at your local Further or Higher Education centres, or online via the Open University. If you are not eligible for these courses there is the option of Future Learn. This is an online collection of courses in a wide variety of subjects offered for FREE by some outstanding providers, mostly universities.
Courses are all completely free, and you complete them online over a number of weeks, with a certificate of ‘attendance’ at the end. Some courses running currently include; Start Writing Fiction, Using Creative Thinking, Learn to Code, The Science of Cities, Japanese Culture… The range of courses is quite breathtaking and you are given an idea of the number of hours you would be expected to commit each week to study as well as the length of the course.
Signing up to a course is sometimes the only way to make sure you commit to a bit of self care – as it’s much harder to ‘not bother’ when you have included other people. The same might be said of any of your self care plans – make sure you tell someone else about them to keep yourself on track.