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Unschooling

Posted by on Oct. 2, 2017 at 5:58 PM
  • 4 Replies

Anybody here do this?  Can someone who does tell me a little about it please

by on Oct. 2, 2017 at 5:58 PM
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Leissaintexas
by Silver Member on Oct. 3, 2017 at 10:59 AM
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Just like with any other method of home education, there are degrees of unschooling. There are extremists, which in my opinion resembles un-parenting; no bedtimes, no structure to life whatsoever, kid is basically in charge of themselves. Then there are barely unschooled, for whom letting their child pick the order in which they do their subjects is as far as they'll go.

I'm a middle of the spectrum kind of unschooler. What this means for us is that I trust my kids to manage their own education.

I know that my youngest detests textbooks, he completely zones out and retains nothing. But if he's interested in a topic, he can soak information up like a sponge if I leave him alone to explore it himself. He has far surpassed my ability to instruct him in science, he understands concepts well beyond my own scope. it's not unusual to hear him puttering in the kitchen at 10 pm looking for ingredients for a science project because he "had an idea he wanted to try". That has happened without science curriculum.

My DD is a history nut, she actively seeks out documentaries on specific events or biographies of people of interest. Her interests have led her to discover the Salem witch trials, the Terra Cotta soldiers of China, the Peruvian mummies, Alexander Hamilton, all of her own accord.

The general purpose of unschooling is to teach them HOW to learn. If they know how to teach themselves, if they have the tools to seek out information, there is literally nothing they cannot learn.

I use curriculum for math, but I also allow life to teach as well. I sparingly used a writing curriculum, most of what they know about writing comes from reading well written literature. I mean, you can't be exposed to good literature and not pick it up to some degree. (What goes in must come out)

The most difficult thing for new unschoolers to remember is that your child will learn what they need when they need it, not when some standard says they should. So an unschooler won't always read at 5, or do algebra at 12, or learn about pilgrims at 7. They'll do it in their own time.

It can be hard to let go of PS expectations of "grade level" and it can be hard to trust our kids to learn without micromanaging. And it doesn't have to be all or nothing, it can go by degrees. But it's freeing (and rewarding) to watch our kids delight in learning.
autismpirate
by Member on Oct. 3, 2017 at 1:17 PM


Quoting Leissaintexas: Just like with any other method of home education, there are degrees of unschooling. There are extremists, which in my opinion resembles un-parenting; no bedtimes, no structure to life whatsoever, kid is basically in charge of themselves. Then there are barely unschooled, for whom letting their child pick the order in which they do their subjects is as far as they'll go.  Thank you for this, ya i couldn't be a 'radical' unschooler lol.
I'm a middle of the spectrum kind of unschooler. What this means for us is that I trust my kids to manage their own education. I know that my youngest detests textbooks, he completely zones out and retains nothing. But if he's interested in a topic, he can soak information up like a sponge if I leave him alone to explore it himself. He has far surpassed my ability to instruct him in science, he understands concepts well beyond my own scope. it's not unusual to hear him puttering in the kitchen at 10 pm looking for ingredients for a science project because he "had an idea he wanted to try". That has happened without science curriculum.  My oldest just retains NOTHING from a text book,  unless it interests her which is what kinda has me exploring this.  She has always been this way, and knows the most random things lol.  She has been in regular school for quite some time and then we have been doing traditional homeschool for a few years and its just not sinnking in.  Mostly i think because i am basically doing public school at home lol.
My DD is a history nut, she actively seeks out documentaries on specific events or biographies of people of interest. Her interests have led her to discover the Salem witch trials, the Terra Cotta soldiers of China, the Peruvian mummies, Alexander Hamilton, all of her own accord.
The general purpose of unschooling is to teach them HOW to learn. If they know how to teach themselves, if they have the tools to seek out information, there is literally nothing they cannot learn. I use curriculum for math, but I also allow life to teach as well. I sparingly used a writing curriculum, most of what they know about writing comes from reading well written literature. I mean, you can't be exposed to good literature and not pick it up to some degree. (What goes in must come out) The most difficult thing for new unschoolers to remember is that your child will learn what they need when they need it, not when some standard says they should. So an unschooler won't always read at 5, or do algebra at 12, or learn about pilgrims at 7. They'll do it in their own time. It can be hard to let go of PS expectations of "grade level" and it can be hard to trust our kids to learn without micromanaging. And it doesn't have to be all or nothing, it can go by degrees. But it's freeing (and rewarding) to watch our kids delight in learning.  I would like to keep a math curriculum, mostly because both daughters love kahn academy and thrive on it.  If you don't mind i would like to ask you another questions....IF both my girls have been doing 'traditional' homeschool type stuff (schedules, books, worksheets, etc), how do you transition to unschooling......
Thank you for your time, i really appreciate it.  


Leissaintexas
by Silver Member on Oct. 4, 2017 at 10:51 AM
1 mom liked this
So you say that textbooks aren't a good fit, but they enjoy Kahn academy. I wouldn't necessarily jump straight to unschooling. I'd explore some other options first. A Charlotte Mason approach may appeal to her, or unit studies. Maybe a more visually based approach like a video series. There are a ton of ways to take in information, but not all of those ways is a good fit for every kid. Determine her learning style; she sounds like maybe she's a visual learner.

I'll be honest, textbooks are just about the most unnatural way to learn lol. It's rare for a person to just love textbooks. Explore some options and maybe deschool your own brain for a bit before going whole hog on any one method.
Angela4boys
by Member on Oct. 19, 2017 at 7:35 AM
1 mom liked this

We do a variation of Unschooling, but not full time.  Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday every week, my kids use Funschooling journals from The Thinking Tree.  Its child led, delight directed learning, but in documented way.  One day a week we do group unit study of my choice, they usually last weeks-months.  These are things that Mom considers important to know....One day a week we do international study, we learn about a country, cook food from that country, do an art project based on that country's customs and traditions.

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