Saturday, February 7, 2009

Why do you unschool?

On the Unschooling Catholics email list ( see sidebar for link..) someone asked - why do you unschool?

There are a myriad of reasons for choosing to unschool. And I hope to hear your thoughts.

Why do I choose unschooling?

I think unschooling works best for academics - unschooling encourages kids to follow passions and not learn just to pass tests.

I think unschooling is better for relationships - we really get to know each other and spend time together and question paradigms and seek joy.

I think unschooling is better for passing on our Faith - we share our faith in our day to day living and we live an open book life with our kids.

I think I unschool because unschooling works!

How does unschooling work?

Read How Unschooling Works.

Schooling works by pouring expertly selected bits of the world into a child. (Or trying to, anyway!)
Unschooling works by the child pulling in what he wants and needs. It works best by noticing what the child is asking for and helping him get it. It works best by running the world through their lives so they know what it's possible to be interested in.

And ~

That's how unschooling works. Kids build up knowledge about what interests them. They have a vested interest in understanding what interests them.
Unfortunately for new unschooling moms, what interests them usually doesn't look academic. It looks a lot like playing. (Play is how kids are created to learn!) Learning looks like video games and Harry Potter and making videos and reading and watching TV and playing with friends and pretend and chatting on line. It's really only after kids are grown and following their interests into college and jobs that we can see how what they did led to where they got. But the ongoing process doesn't look at all like school.


Faith said...

I think I unschool, or perhaps more accurately put, tend towards unschoolishness, because I can see how forcing certain subjects into boxes for consumption kills any love of learning the subject. Whereas. learning through life, curiousity, following rabbit trails, learning something because that knowledge has become an immediate need in response to a situation and therefore isn't abstract anymore, lends itself to parenting and family life much more easily than the institutional, scheduled method of learning which tends to get in the way of loving bonds and family dynamics.

Leonie said...

I think you make a good distinction here, between family centred and large roup education. Different things work simply because of the environment, situation, atmosphere..