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With school so often pushing reading at an early age and having kids clocking lots of time sitting at a desk both of which we spent approximately zero time doing , I thought my daughter might be a bit behind most kindergarteners on a filling-out-worksheets kind of level.

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Although we have opted out of public school for our kids thus far, I am by no means opposed to public schools. However, this setup also means that public schools cannot assume that your child has received any kind of education at home. They cannot assume that your child has seen a book before, knows how to hold it, or knows that words that appear in print represent words you can speak, and so on. These are all things that come up in the course of everyday life together. Collecting and sorting rocks is a regular pastime.

These activities are part of the regular play of children in nature if we only give them the opportunity and get out of the way. Because public school aims to ensure that no kid falls through the cracks without knowing basic information for getting through life, they spend instructional time on things that kids growing up with involved and caring parents will learn anyway. Maybe not this year, but soon enough. For example:. Does my daughter know what a cylinder is? Am I worried about it? Usually we are googling information about a topic like space or animals or photosynthesis.

I have absolutely no concerns that my kids might go through life without knowing how to look up words or other information they want to know.

Unschooling - Wikipedia

This refers to learning how to read simple words composed of one vowel and one consonant, two consonants with a vowel between them, etc. If your goal is to get 30 young children to read as quickly as possible, perhaps this approach has some merit. If not, I think it complicates reading more than it simplifies it. There are also a number of items that I know we can do a better job of teaching or providing for our kids. Knowing about historical figures is important, but the list above fails to inspire me.

I want a better education than that for my daughters. Research shows that addiction appears to be the result of a combination of factors including experiencing childhood trauma, isolation, lack of opportunity, and genetic predisposition. Touting your drug-free status as a personal achievement and by implication shaming those who fail to achieve it is a misleading way to address a complex social problem like addiction.

Our kids have come with us to vote many times. I remember the first time we brought our daughter to vote when she was old enough to understand a little bit of what was happening.

Can we do it again?! This is an important goal, but also one that we can accomplish much better ourselves.

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Children are supposed to engage in at least 60 minutes of vigorous physical activity each day. I think children in public schools will generally be hard pressed to achieve this goal because among schools that provide recess, the average length is only 27 minutes per day. I think just about any child can benefit from a relaxed, home-based education.

The question is whether it works for the parents. However, if the opportunity and desire are there, you already have the two things you need most to provide an excellent education. I love this post! So this is super helpful! Like Like. Thank you! If you are in charge of managing and educating 30 kids, that requires a lot of planning and coordination. Your days are very similar to ours. The three kids here 7, 5, and 3 are picking up what they really need to know as they go.

One of my favorite aspects of our experience is that the kids are integrated with the community here, building a city-wide network for themselves just because they have the time to get out and interact with people every day. Yes, I love how unschooling and homeschooling give kids so much opportunity to interact with the community at large.

When I was in high school I remember going downtown to the local university one school day because I was taking an AP test. I had this realization that there was a whole world out there I had been missing out on for years. Hopefully my kids will feel more like part of the community and the world. Like Liked by 1 person. Thanks for writing this!

This is very timely for us because our 5 year old is going to start Sudbury schooling soon. Also, we are going to host our very first au pair soon and we live in Austin. Oh wow, we have a lot in common!

Should You Unschool?

I plan to keep posting about each year as as time goes by, so please do check in again. We ended up doing a few days a week at an alternative school, which has been a great hybrid option for now.

How to unschool

Just taking each year one at a time! Great post!

Why parents are choosing to unschool their children

This is a lovely article, very informative too, thank you. So many fears! And, many people are curious about it! There are lot of different homeschool methods, which is part of what makes the idea of choosing to homeschool so exciting! The homeschool method you are drawn to can be affected by many things, not the least of which is your personality type. I have a good friend who is the exact opposite.

She also requires a lot more structure in the home, and most definitely runs a tighter ship than we do. A homeschooling method will only work if it fits into your lifestyle. I was thrilled to learn that there are others out there who have a similar approach! At first, it may seem contradictory, since Classical Education is a rigorous form of schooling, and Unschooling is a relaxed form. We use the Well-Trained Mind as a foundation for curriculum ideas and milestone markers.

It is language-focused. And it follows a specific three-part pattern: the mind must be first supplied with facts and images, then given the logical tools for organization of facts, and finally equipped to express conclusions. To the classical mind, all knowledge is interrelated. We subscribe wholeheartedly to the idea that, if we want our children to be critical thinkers, we must first give them an extensive knowledge base to draw from.

Many homeschool and traditional school programs jump to critical thinking before children have learned in depth about history, science, math, and language. We also believe that language-based learning is very different than image-based learning. It serves as a mental shortcut, and children can become dependent on those shortcuts for learning. Yes, we do use TV shows or internet resources as learning supplements, and at times even as a babysitter! We do THAT through practice. Although we value the diligent acquisition of knowledge, our homeschool is very un-like a school.

Those are the only times that there have been tears over working hard to learn. Time and time again, I have found:. My primary role as a Classical Unschool teacher is to understand how my children learn best. I surround them with opportunities to learn, and then give them plenty of freedom to do the learning. Do I challenge them? Many times I do have to emphasize how we hold the pencil, or the importance of learning to write neatly, mostly to save them the trouble of having to re-learn it later. For example: A spelling workbook got incredible resistance, as did writing exercises.

So, I only insisted on using them until I knew they had learned the basic concepts.

What to Do First

Then, I backed off, even though I was fully aware of the need for improvement. Now, on their own, my boys get ideas to write stories, and then they realize they need to know how to spell words, and just like that I am given a beautiful opportunity to teach those concepts in more depth.

source site We traveled, and she was curious about the peoples, the cultures, and the languages of the places we went to. She wanted to know if she had enough money to buy something at the store, and we helped her calculate the price, figure out the tax, and count the money she had. Unschooling takes quite a bit more work than many programs that are already set out. To do it well, you have to be ready to learn things alongside your kidlet that you might not have any interest in.

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