Hygge for Unschoolers

Hygge for unschoolers - podcast

February here in the northern hemisphere can be tough.  Kids are getting antsy and so are parents! Yes, I have a lot of ideas collected for fun things to do in the house - but what about settling in and embracing the coziness that can come with February?

Just when we thought things were warming up here in central Texas, the temperatures dropped and we're reminded that Punxsutawney Phil - the Official Groundhog and weatherman - saw his shadow and predicted 6 more weeks of winter!

We're all always learning, right? So let's find out more about this international idea called "hygge" -something I think unschoolers might find really valuable!

Embracing Hygge

We can learn from the Scandinavians - who certainly know how to do WINTER!

If you're like me, you're a little distracted by the word itself - how DO you pronounce it?? According to my Google Search, it's pronounced hoo-gah or hue-gah. And if you have a Danish accent, I'm sure you'll sound much better than me with my Texas accent!

...the word is said to have no direct translation in English, though “cozy” comes close. It derives from a sixteenth-century Norwegian term, hugga, meaning “to comfort” or “to console,” which is related to the English word “hug.” [that's a cool word association to share with the kids, right?] Associated with relaxation, indulgence, and gratitude, hygge has long been considered a part of the Danish national character. [The New Yorker]

But before we dive into this, I'm Sue Patterson and this is the Unschooling Mom2Mom podcast. I come here with little unschooling pep talks or small bits of information to help support you on your unschooling journey. I hope you're enjoying this podcast as much as I do! I love having 5-10 minutes with you, to share what I know about ways to make unschooling work! I'll add resources below - because I have a lot of ways for us to connect.

Click to find out more about this!

I think the reason we, as unschoolers, might want to know more about hygge is that it's all about enjoying our time with loved ones in a relaxed and cozy atmosphere. Sounds like a goal for our Unschooling Homes, right??

So what would it include?

  • Cozy blankets and pillows
  • The smell of something yummy in the oven
  • Candles flickering
  • Mugs of hot chocolate or warm cider
  • Warm slippers or nubby socks

You could turn it into a family "event!" Turn the lights down low and put on an audio book everyone would enjoy. Snuggle together and bask in connection you're creating within your family.

And even though we think hygge is synonymous with winter in Scandinavia, I think for our southern hemisphere unschoolers reading and listening in can still do cozy when the weather is heating up.

Maybe it would mean a fire pit in the back yard, and cooking s'mores outside.
Maybe it would be comfy patio furniture or even a blanket and a pillow for hanging out together under the stars.

When we look at hygge through an unschooling lens, we can see that it's about prioritizing our connection with loved ones. Creating a shelter from the storm, so to speak. Setting up our environment so we have what we need to make it easy to rest into those moments together.


Top Ten Hygge Cities in the USA

Maybe YOUR city made the Cozy List?? If you're curious about what's so hygge about each of them, read more here. Or go see for yourself!

One of the things that was really important for me and for our family, was that I wanted our home to be like a cozy nest – a soft spot to land when they returned from their adventures out in the world or somewhere they could feel nourished as they daydreamed and played and enjoyed their life. When I look back at what our home was like – even though we moved frequently, some things continued from one location to the next. I think we were practicing hygge and didn't even realize it!

People often asked me to describe what our lives were like as I unschooled my three kids, so I have some resources that can help you embrace a little more hygge in your home.

I even created a Guide called Your Unschooling Home with lots of great ideas and suggestions.

You know, hygge can happen any time of the year. Any time you want to create a little more connection, think about ways to cozy up the house! What would YOUR family enjoy?

One of the wonderful things about unschooling, is that you don't have to distract yourself with things that don't matter.  Lesson plans and curriculum can often be disconnected and irrelevant. But the weather and the seasons?  That's living in the moment.  And it gives you the time and space to focus on what would strengthen your relationship with your own kids.

Hygge. Yeah. That works for us, right?

Ok, I'll be back (hopefully next week) with a little more. We had some questions that came in from the last podcast about technology. So I think I'll tackle that next! Enjoy your kids! Keep it cozy! And we'll talk again soon!

And aren't the Danes always coming up as the Happiest People in the World on all those surveys? [The Atlantic]
Maybe we could learn something from them!

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