Unschooling on GMA

I have no internet or TV, and have been outside the mainstream news for a while now, so didn’t realize there was a tiny segment about Radical Unschooling on GMA. You can watch the video here.

“Imagine No School, Parents Let Kids Go Free!” was the caption under most of the segment, which made me LOL. Oh no! Not free kids!!!!

I have received a bunch of emails and calls from friends and family all over the place, who know I unschool but haven’t really seen it in action until they watched the segment on TV. They were, understandably, freaked out. So, here’s my post to everyone, because I can’t answer every message personally!

First, I give a lot of credit to the family for opening up their doors like that. I was approached to have an article written about our family in a Boulder newspaper, and declined. Whenever you do something that is so different from the norm, everyone in the norm has a hard time wrapping their heads around it. Which is the case of this interview.

I didn’t find anything spectacularly cringeworthy in the interview or the way the parents and children spoke about their lives. I did find the attitude of both Stephanopoulis and the lady interviewing them particularly dismissive, biased, and aloof. Which is not much different from what we get from everyday people on the street. Her questions in particular, and the comments from everyone who watched the show, show just how closed minded our public schools are making people. When you’ve been raised in a system of tests and ranked heirarchy and performance reviews and grades and forced curriculum, you get a bunch of people that think in a very small range. A range that feels that textbooks, tests, curriculum, and someone telling you what, when, how, and where to learn are the only ways to do so.

The parents and children gave her more respect than she gave them is the opinion I formed after watching the interview. Instead of asking them questions about how they live their lives, what their interests were, how the child led passions formed their day, what made them happy, how they got along in their family when they based it on trust and love rather than rules and discipline, what the kids wanted to do when they left the house and chose a career or trade…etc., etc., etc., the interviewer raked them over the coals for not doing things mainstream. Uh, that’s already been established, that’s the point of the interview! But she never asked them anything that had to do with their lives, she just focused on all the things they weren’t doing. A great opportunity was missed.

Her questions:
*focused on what they “regret” by not going to a “normal school”, emphasis on ‘normal’. As in, what everyone else does, as in, just like everyone else, as in, following along because everyone else is doing it. Is this really important? What about asking them what they gain by doing things so differently? What about wondering what opportunities they’ve had by going outside a classroom? Why negative instead of positive?

*yelled in exasperation when the oldest son answered her question by saying he didn’t really like what he did in school, “But you were 7! What do you know?!” AAAAAAAGHHHHHH. It’s called respect, and the lack of it towards kids in this segment killed me. Kids all through history have been hunting, working, building, learning, producing at this age. And now, all of a sudden in the 21st century America, they don’t know anything? Really?

*Pointed out school is for exposing kids to different things. I fail to see how sitting at a desk with a break for lunch and PE is exposing them to more than just letting them out into the world does, with an unrestricted access to whatever it is they are curious about at the moment (rather than waiting for the right grade/class).

*Tried to classify the daughter into a grade (why are grades so important, rather than life lessons or experiences?) and then pressed her on college readiness. As if college is the be all end all of a students life. Guess what? There are scores of college graduates out there, unemployed, totally screwed by this economy and the failed promise that a college degree creates more opportunity.

*Did she really suggest that creating a unique, empowering, outside of the mainstream experience for kids will really make them “handicapped”? Really? Is that the lesson schools are inadvertently teaching? There is only one way to do things. One right answer. One way to learn. Anything else=retarded. ???

*where was the follow up question about what the kids experiences and knowledge were that other people dont? Now that would make this a balanced interview. But no, the question was never asked. Because obviously, the only knowledge that’s important is what everyone is learning thanks to NCLB and the curriculum.

Really, the only important idea in this whole interview is that, guess what….unschooling is growing by leaps and bounds. And it’s growing as a direct opposition to this stifling, one size fits all, ‘normalizing’ pressure of NCLB.

Unschooling is radical. It goes against the grain of what we as a society have been taught about parenting and educating. I’m sure my family would come across just as poorly if we were followed by an interviewer with a closed mind like that. Secretly, I’m glad Hubby was traveling during the week when the kids and I started unschooling, because I don’t know if he would have been down with the radicalness of it. All he saw was the change in the kids when he saw them on the weekends. I told him we were trying a ‘new curriculum’, but didn’t say that curriculum was throwing out the curriculums and putting the kids in charge of their learning. I felt safe to tell him that when he commented, about 4 months into it, “whatever this new curriculum is, you should keep doing it. The kids are so tuned in and learning so much!”

And that’s about all I have to say about that. I love unschooling, I love the other unschoolers I get to hang out with, and unschooling is going to continue to grow the more pressure schools put on standardization and control. Because guess what? Every kid is outside a ‘norm’. No kid, and no adult, should ever want to be in a ‘norm’. We are all different, with our own interests, passions, and skills. We need to celebrate and encourage this kind of radical development rather than medicate and force kids to stay in a classroom that celebrates ‘mainstream normalcy.’

***********
In Colorado-moving-from-the-house-news, here’s a bulletin: moving sucks! yeah!

Photo on 2010-04-19 at 19

I’m getting a brief respite from it with my double peppermint hot chocolate and a little internet action.

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53 Responses

  1. I was wondering when we’d see your response to that so called interview…. 😉 Boy, talk about being biased and negative right off the bat! I understand they filmed but cut all the discussion about the family’s world and US travels, classes they’ve taken, etc.. Of course. There’s supposed to be a follow up interview with them tomorrow with a John Holt ‘rep’. Looking forward to seeing that one!

  2. I actually know the younger family that had a day “chronicled”. They cut them short because of how awesome they would make unschooling look. I am sure the same is true of the family with teenagers, just all the good stuff got left on the cutting room floor. That was an awful piece. Reaffirms why I don’t bother with such morning talk shows.

  3. Your blog makes an amazing case for unschooling. You do such a good job of expressing your joy of being with your kids and the opportunities for exploring that unschooling gives you.
    Maybe GMA should now spend a day in a typical classroom and show what is really going on (or not) for most kids.

    • thank you! And yes, an expose on school days for kids would be interesting. John Stossell did a great job with a show he put on–for the life of me I can’t remember the title, though!

  4. Thank you for this post. Point by point, you have touched on some of the things I was bothered most by.

    Regarding what’s on the cutting-room floor, here’s a note from Christine, the teens’ mom: “What wasn’t included – Shaun discussing his extensive knowledge of mythologies with Juju, all of the footage of us next to the RV showing the map of the US & explaining our 2 month trip across the country, our trip to Australia (they asked for photos & we emailed them a bunch from our trips over the years), Kimi’s trip to France without us, at the age of 10!), Kimi’s Japanese Culture class & Shaun’s 3 sword fighting classes at Guard Up. So much knowledge that was discussed & explained to GMA staff, yet never shown on-air. Frustrating, to say the least!”

  5. I’m so happy I didn’t watch it. Thanks for your very level-headed way of describing and defending the concept. I just end up shutting up whenever the topic comes up. People make it painfully obvious that they are not open to the concept, so I don’t even bother discussing it.

    • I ebb and flow with it. Sometimes I’m outspoken, and other times I just want to be left alone. This blog gives me a great outlet to speak my mind because there’s never going to be a face to face conflict over what I write, LOL

  6. I don’t think GMA or the like would be the platform for explainig unschooling. They want sound bites not understanding. Fox ran a series on Beck regarding the limitations of our nationalized vs. local educational programs. They spoke to the bankruptcy of the teachers unions, the current focus on process over learning, etc. They spoke about a pilot program being tried, of all places, NYC. It focusses on individual learning by using computers, teachers and other students.
    Tif’s kids have taught me to trust them in their excitement to learn.

  7. i can’t see an interview going well when it’s starts out with, “i’m biased and think this is crazy”.

  8. Beautiful response. Very well put.

  9. Oh ! The interview was so biased . My heart goes out for all unschoolers . Friends, you rock !!! And you have the courage to believe in your Kids !!!

  10. The follow-up piece this morning was actually much better and allowed Christine and Phil to set the record straight on a few things. Biased interviews suck! But at least they had the guts to allow a brief discussion to take place afterwards…

  11. Thanks for writing about this. I intentionally forgo watching news coverage of our family’s so called radical lifestyle. The last time I tuned in to such a program it was on home birthing and it made me so mad I just decided to save myself the grief.

    I think the best way to counteract this kind of negative coverage is to just live our lives intentionally, and allow people to draw their own conclusions. Its a beautiful thing to see a mind open right before your eyes.

    • It is beautiful to see minds opening up, such a good point to just live a deliberate life.

      Sent from my iPhone

  12. I think you summed it up right here:: “… from friends and family all over the place, who know I unschool but haven’t really seen it in action until they watched the segment on TV. They were, understandably, freaked out. ”

    I don’t ever expect the mainstream media to portray fairly, to understand, to report accurately with respect, because that doesn’t make for good TV. And media never supports counter culture or ‘rebels’ of any sort…not good for the ‘get in line and shut up’ society rules. But no surprise.

    So, what it comes down to is that my family and neighbors all knew we unschooled, but didn’t know what that meant day to day. With two shows in as many weeks with this ‘they are all crazy! is this legal?’ spin means all those people are freaked out! 😉 Lovely.

    We have been interviewed for stories here often too – but I refuse to talk about unschooling…they mis-quote me for every single other story why would I open up my kids to that?

    Nice to see they had a chance to redeem themselves a little bit today and they spoke well and I felt better for them (can only imagine the backlash they will see in the future), but still, minutes only…

    • Yes, I could have just left it alone as a ridiculous piece of mainstream bias, but then I got all the panicked emails and phone calls. ;).

      I think you’re right, all we can do is live our lives. And blog about it 🙂

      Sent from my iPhone

  13. […] can watch it and then read a much better commentary @ Childs Play’s blog.  Where as I cop out with a snarky and reactionary one liner, she gives a point by point redress […]

  14. unschooling ahead! ahoy!!! Ann Murphy is an idiot.

    • LOL. My post could have been so much shorter if I would have just written that instead!

      Sent from my iPhone

  15. you have no internet? how do you blog?

  16. That clip made my head HURT! Ridiculously biased but then again it’s main stream media.

    Bravo on your well said response!

  17. Great summary. I actually felt sorry for the teens. They were very graceful though and I applaud their tact. I really felt for the boy when the lady laughed in his face, you could tell he was not toughened for that kind of treatment from “adults”.
    The Biglers were very brave, I could never open my home or children to that. yeah for them!

  18. Thanks for this, I completely agree. There was such a sensationalistic vibe to the over-voice and questioning, I’m not sure if I consider it more horrifying or hilarious. GMA is exactly the kind of “journalistic” nonsense that gives The Onion its inspiration.

  19. Not to rain on your parade, but you’re being just as biased and rude. I have nothing against unschooling, and I think it’s fantastic if you go that route, but calling a school an “institution”, like it’s a prison? That’s uncalled for. I’ve been going to public school all my life, along with my brother. My dad’s a professor and my mom’s a social worker – not every parent has time to unschool. I live in California (which is one of the worst states for public education, by the way) and am a senior in high school. I have a full schedule of seven periods, four of which are AP. I do theatre, photography, several clubs, have a job at a local patisserie, and am getting ready to attend the University of Puget Sound next year with the help of some great scholarships. My school has no funding, not for art, not for sports. Everyone fundraises. And you know what? We put on some amazing shows and some incredible sports games. School isn’t a prison. If you have the motivation, you can learn everywhere. The teachers I’ve had have changed my life. They’ve helped open my eyes and help me grow. I’ve been able to freely pursue my passion for the world and women’s rights with my English teacher, with her telling me about events and suggesting books every step of the way. My biology teacher helped me realize that biology is what I want to pursue in college. Through my marine biology and AP biology class, I’ve been able to dig up molecrabs, snap photos of jellyfish at the beach, transfer glow-in-the-dark DNA in plasmids, etc. I go to the beach with my marine bio class every week. Institution? Not really. I’ve taken Spanish for years and went to Spain last summer to study and travel. I went to London with the theatre. Sure, I’ve had a bad class or two, but that’s life. Not everything is fun. I have fantastic teachers – how many kids will say that calculus and physics are their favourite classes? Everyone that takes them at my school loves them because they’re taught by a great teacher. It’s not an “institution”, it’s not the “man” or the administration, it’s the teacher and the parents. They’re the ones that make school fun, that make it worth it. It’s also today’s kids. We have instant gratification for everything, so of course school might be boring to kids. Why sit in class when you could be out getting drunk and smoking weed? And if you hate public education so much, blame Bush. I guarantee you that there is not one teacher in this country that believes in “No Child Left Behind”. Also, my teachers grade on what I know and how I demonstrate my knowledge. It’s not pass-or-fail. Classes like that don’t teach. They’re in it to expand our horizons, not to lock us in.

    “*Pointed out school is for exposing kids to different things. I fail to see how sitting at a desk with a break for lunch and PE is exposing them to more than just letting them out into the world does, with an unrestricted access to whatever it is they are curious about at the moment (rather than waiting for the right grade/class).
    *Tried to classify the daughter into a grade (why are grades so important, rather than life lessons or experiences?) and then pressed her on college readiness. As if college is the be all end all of a students life. Guess what? There are scores of college graduates out there, unemployed, totally screwed by this economy and the failed promise that a college degree creates more opportunity.”

    This is where you lost me. I’m sorry, but that’s no better than the interview. Have you thought about what happens when you just “sit at a desk”? We don’t just sit there, we learn. We have class discussions that continue after the bell rings. And college is about growth. It’s about learning. I’m surprised you’re so negative. Nobody should go to college just to get a job. College is about growing and learning and exploring who you are. I am extremely grateful for everything that school has given me and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I am extremely grateful for my teachers and for my parents, for all the encouragement. That’s what kids need – adults that care. Unschooling and public school shouldn’t be seen black-and-white. It’s a multifaceted issue and every child and every family and every class and every school is different.
    Next time you attack something, please think before you speak.

    • I would first ask that you compare prisons and schools. You seem like a very well worded and thoughtful individual. I am quite certain that when you start your comparison you will see some parallels and perhaps, understand the intention of the post better. It also sounds as if you have had a very uncommon experience in the public school system. Not everyone gets. Not everyone is in a system that has the opportunities that you do or excellent teachers. I have seen many over the years and what you describe is very near the utopian end of the spectrum.

      Public school is a system. (It’s in the title.) A system by nature creates the same thing over and over again. It deems those that are not of the same mold, “rejects.” Most homeschoolers that I know are against the system, not necessarily the teachers. (Though I have met many that should not be molding young minds.) The poster was simply pointing out, through this and other posts, that there are alternatives. There was no black and white. Anyone who says differently read one post, reacted, and then vomited all over the page. The interview WAS biased, the interviewers admitted it themselves. Homeschoolers are attacked constantly for methods, religions, philosophies, and socialization by the NEA and the system. Is it really that far fetched that this would be upsetting to us? I don’t think so.

      • Oh, believe me. I’ve read many a political cartoon and editorial about prisons v. schools. Again, I live in California, haha.
        My school is far from a utopia, we have pregnant teens, drugs, gang fights, etc. I’m just trying to point out that you can get a fantastic education in the midst of all that. The system definitely has flaws, but sending a child to public school is not the worst thing you can do.
        I don’t think you read my reply right. I saw the interview. I was upset as well. It was biased and it was rude, but then again, a couple things in this post were as well. I meant to point out that public school is not just a desk in a classroom listening to sorry excuse for a teacher drone on and on about hydrogen ions.

    • For the record, a different Sheri but with similar sentiments.

      Kathryn – You present your argument thoughtfully and eloquently and that is to be respected and admired. Public school obviously worked for you and that’s great. Kudos. I’m glad to hear that the system works for some.

      However, to a great many children the “institution” of public school FEELS like a prison. Many of us enrolled our bright and vibrant 5 year olds in school thinking that’s what we’re “supposed” to do.

      Only to find a year or two or even four or five later that our happy, outgoing child has become withdrawn and depressed and cried every night because they had to go back the next day.

      Many of us who have decided to unschool our children tried the public school route and found that our kids were suffering as a result.

      That’s when it becomes black and white. When your child’s well being is at stake, there are no shades of grey.

      Still, as parents, when we talk about unschooling we are often talking from real experience from both sides of the issue.

      Have a child who doesn’t thrive in the public school system and in fact actually suffers from it and then you might reconsider your argument.

      It’s not that unschoolers think the public school system is bad per se, it’s just that we are well aware that it’s not the only way and that we should have the right to choose it without being portrayed as neglectful and uncaring parents.

      • Trust me – my brother has gone through hell before he became comfortable with who he is and started to make friends and enjoy his classes. I know what that’s like. I have friends who hate school and that depresses me because I’ve always loved it. Please don’t think I don’t know what it’s like to feel like school is a prison – I’d be lying if I said I’ve never felt that way. But hey, it’s not like the “real world” gets any better! 😛
        “It’s not that unschoolers think the public school system is bad per se, it’s just that we are well aware that it’s not the only way and that we should have the right to choose it without being portrayed as neglectful and uncaring parents.”
        I agree with this 100%.

    • Kathryn,
      first, I love your reply! I like how you fit in “the man”, lol. You show very well that education isn’t a one size fits all concept–what doesn’t work for one person may be perfect for another.

      Our experience in school was very different than yours, however, and studies are showing that public schools today are failing kids across the board. This is why homeschooling, charter schools, and unschooling are growing quickly.

      Rather than ‘attacking’ something, I am simply educating other people about options for if school isn’t working for themselves or their children.

      I’m glad it’s been so wonderful for you, and am excited about your upcoming college days!

      • Thanks, that’s exactly what I wanted to point out – everyone and every school works differently. Again, I’m from California, and I don’t want to get into the details about public education here, ESPECIALLY in my district…but, well, it’s getting ugly. Really ugly. The biggest problem in my opinion is the parents. If a kid doesn’t have someone at home who will encourage her to do well, how can she learn at all? And we have a lot of students at my school who don’t speak English, and we’re not giving them any help at all. How can we expect to perform well on standardized state tests when half the kids don’t speak English?
        My little brother had a hard time in school for years because he finds it hard to get along with kids his age. I know firsthand that people have different experiences and learn differently and behave differently. I just had an issue with how you worded some of your points, but I definitely agree with you.
        Unschooling is great if you can do it, but public school isn’t the worst option out there! 🙂

  20. Tiffani, Thank you for the link. I had not seen it. It is sad to see such bias in something that could have been a great springboard for a wonderful disscussion.

  21. I homeschooled most of my school years..mostly from textbooks, since my mom was an education major and that’s just how she was used to doing things. However, a lot of what I learned as a child and still remember to this day wasn’t from what I learned from textbooks. Because we were missionaries we spent a lot of time in other countries and traveling around the US in a travel trailer…so we got to go on TONS of field trips to cool places like the Air Force museum in Ohio, a bread factory in Texas, Lincoln’s homestead in Indiana, the pyramids in Mexico, and castles in Europe. While living in countries where we didn’t have easy access to a lot of books, I’d spend Sunday afternoons curled up with a volume of the encyclopedia. My mom would buy us those fun random facts books which is how I learned about funny spoonerisms that I throw into random conversations even now. I remember in what was considered my senior year I read Leon Uris’ book Exodus as well as the whole Thoene Zion Covenant series and then spent the next couple months reading and studying everything I could get my hands on about pogroms, the beginning of the formation of the country of Israel, and the ships sent to England full of Jewish child refugees. Though a lot of my schooling could be considered traditional in that we read and studied from textbooks, there was still plenty of flexibility and freedom to pursue what interested us too.

  22. When you sit at that table in public school are you learning what you WANT to learn? Do you have the freedom to get up and go use the bathroom whenever you want to or get a snack if you need one? Do you have the ability to learn about biology at 10am instead of 2pm? Do you get to decide or are things decided for you and you just follow along because that is what you do? Are you told when you can eat lunch and where you have to eat it? Do you have limited time per subject per day? Do you get a recess or is it just gym class? That is more like a prison than you care to admit. I am not talking about college where you make most of the choices….Maybe these things are being generalized too much for you, but that is how the media portrays things as well. Public school is not cost effective and does not put out well-rounded individuals who are secure in themselves.

    You sound like one of the few students who actually enjoys school–mostly for the extracurricular activities you posted. You are in AP classes which makes you different than the average PS school student. It is a shame that the most important subjects don’t have money behind them and you have to fundraise to support them. What I want to know is are you saying all these things to try and protect yourself and what you have been forced to do as well as what you have chosen (theater, photography, etc) or because you fear something else? Do you really feel those were your only choices? How many kids in your public school actually get the same opportunities you do? Do they have to be a certain way or have AP classes? Are they able to really choose what they want to learn or have they been labeled by the school? You have been labeled as an overachiever and they love students like you….I was that way too, but too poor to be put into AP classes because only rich families students were put into our AP classes. I had the grades, but not the money. What about the bored student who probably is very smart but is told they are not? What about a child who loves animals but is forced to learn math they don’t yet understand before they are “allowed” to learn about animals? Not everyone is as lucky as you are….

    As for the public school to prison pipeline it is actually something that has been researched.

    • I’m gonna go ahead and assume this post is directed to me even though you didn’t hit “reply”.
      “When you sit at that table in public school are you learning what you WANT to learn? Do you have the freedom to get up and go use the bathroom whenever you want to or get a snack if you need one? Do you have the ability to learn about biology at 10am instead of 2pm? Do you get to decide or are things decided for you and you just follow along because that is what you do? Are you told when you can eat lunch and where you have to eat it? Do you have limited time per subject per day? Do you get a recess or is it just gym class?”
      Umm, I don’t even know how to respond to this. No, sometimes I’m not learning what I want to learn in class. That’s life. There are some required classes and lessons I don’t care about. But hey, do I want to deal with rude customers at work? No. Do I want to sweep the floor? No. Do I want to package your obscenely complicated order to-go and make you three double vanilla nonfat decaf mochas? No. But I do because that comes with the job, which 99% of the time is super fun. Sometimes you have to do things you don’t want to do. Even I know that. I don’t see how having the freedom to use the restroom matters. Yeah, I can use the restroom during class. What’s the big deal with that and my education? And I don’t see how having my biology class second period rather than fifth is going to make any difference in my life. A lot of your “points” are striking me as rather silly, so forgive me if I don’t understand that the fact that I can sit in a classroom or in the cafeteria or anywhere else on school grounds (or off if you’re a senior) and eat is significant to whatever argument you’re trying to make.
      I don’t “fear” anything and I don’t feel pressured to take advanced classes. I take them because I like to learn and always have. I enjoy my classes. The only pressure I’ve ever felt was taking ACTs and SATs for college because colleges are ridiculously competitive and expensive these days, it’s horrible.
      You don’t have to be rich to take an AP class, that’s an invalid argument. There is no payment required for any class. The only classes I’ve ever been asked (not demanded, ASKED) to pay for were photography and AP Bio. Photo because we obviously need money for film, chemicals, and photo paper, and bio because we need money for labs and equipment. The optional AP test does cost money, but you can easily get it discounted by talking to the administration.
      You only get what education you try to get. Nothing is stopping other students from getting opportunities. They’re there. You just have to look for them. The school, again, isn’t as much of a problem as the parents. You can blame the baby boomers for the mess we’re in. They were raised caring about themselves and would rather buy a new car than pay taxes for public education. Our generation is only going to get worse when we’re raised by people like that. So blame the people not willing to pay taxes. Blame the people at the top of the system who have never visited the schools they run. But don’t blame the teachers who do all they can to create a good environment but also have to teach to state standards, which does mean that not every student will enjoy every lesson. Don’t blame the principals who are doing everything they can to comply with the ridiculous standards set by “No Child Left Behind” and run a school at the same time.
      And no one is being disallowed from learning anything. Hellooo, internet? Public library? If you want to learn about animals it’s not that hard.

  23. 31 comments! bam!

  24. […] has brought onto our quiet little community: GMA’s first segment GMA’s second segment Rebuttal on Child’s Play Rebuttal on Huffington Post Unschooling family on Joy Behar Rebuttal on Organic Sister Rebuttal on […]

  25. Awesome rebuttal!

    You touched on all the topics that made me squirm in my chair. I think it is brilliant that people are talking about unschooling, and hopefully planting a seed into peoples minds. I think that when segments like these come out, people just start talking, no matter if the segment was true or not, and that is fantastic. I’m so happy people are coming out and sharing their worlds with us.

    Thank you so much for your great blog post, and I hope that you get settled into you new home soon.

  26. The media makes a living now out of creating controversy. They certainly did a good job of that with this clip. The part I liked the most was how they kept showing the same clips of the video games over and over. It’s nice to know how much good stuff they cut in favor of that.

    I also feel the need to point out that the word “institution” does not mean a prison. Look it up. Although I find it interesting that when paired with public school, someone would automatically infer “prison” in that.

    Sociology project? If I said, “We need to protect the institution of the family,” would you still read the word as prison?

  27. […] Child’s Play:  Unschooling […]

  28. Arwen you make a good point. The word “institution” has many applications. To associate it with only one definition and only negatiove connotations is knee-jerk narrowmindedness, which is what is learned in public schools.

    Notice how often Kathryn uses the word “blame”. Run a “find in page” and note who else uses the word and how often: This mention is the only occurrence aside from Kathryn’s contributions. Notice the lack of concision in her writing style. This is the best the public school system in California has to offer.

    Kathryn, there was a time in my life when I was where you are now. I was young, confident that I had received an excellent education as a result of my own efforts, and proud of the public school system which had educated me. I shared the prevailing opinions of my teachers and was a star student.

    Forty years of life experience later, I choose unschooling for my children. I made the choice after educating myself thoroughly regarding all available options.

    For your sake, I hope you will be able to examine your current certainties and unlearn many of them in fewer years than it took me to do the same.

  29. […] Children Play Tents – five Leading Suggestions How you can Discover the Ideal Play Tent For Your Boy or girlChildren Play Tents – five Leading Suggestions How you can Discover the Ideal Play Tent For Your Boy or girlChild Learning GameUnschooling on GMA […]

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  33. Good post. I learn something totally new and challenging on websites I stumbleupon every day.
    It will always be helpful to read through content from other writers and practice something from their websites.

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