Homeschooling Moms

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paris2lmp
Unschooling? (I'm confused)
January 24, 2013 at 8:56 PM

Based on what I have read in various places, and heard from various people....."unschooling" is basically homeschooling without structure.  No workbooks, assignments, tests etc.  It also is a child-driven method (from my understanding).  Meaning that the student picks and choses what they want to learn and when, and how, with little to no parental guidance. 

Is this a correct understanding of unschooling? 

Replies

  • usmom3
    by usmom3
    BJ
    January 27, 2013 at 9:35 PM

     I think this is her opinion of what unschooling & child led learning are. In the end it really doesn't matter what you call it, if it works for you then do it, if it doesn't, do something else & keep trying different things until you find what works!

    Quoting rsrangel:

    OMG lol SORRY!  I forgot to attach it.   Unschooling

     

    Quoting usmom3:

     

    Quoting rsrangel:

    I found this article...except it says it's not child-led lol.  Either way, are the concepts talked about in it the way you unschool? 

     I would love to read the article to help answer this question. If you could share a link that would be great!

     

     

     

  • Rust.n.Gears
    January 28, 2013 at 12:18 AM

    It really depends on who you talk to. I am told by my local group that I unschool because we do not use a structured curriculum that you purchase outright. I make my own curriculum, teach my children things that are outside the norm of other families, we use the television a lot, and we learn from the world around us. I will center my child's curriculum around their interests which I just think makes sense. My kids love cooking and my teens want to go to cooking school. So yeah they get a lot of cooking classes. Oh and we have no structured time schedule. People tell me they school from 9-1 with breaks in between. We teach the kids all day long. Some of it is with books, some in the kitchen, some at the library, at a craft group, at a co-op, in the park, etc. We learn everywhere. I can't imagine the concept of stopping at a certain time. We were learning a new technique for searing the skin on a duck tonight around 10 pm. We plan to try it out tomorrow night for dinner. The term unschooling is just so broad that it is hard to define. 

  • KickButtMama
    January 28, 2013 at 8:22 AM

    Yes, Unschooling is really an umbrella term that can cover everything from doing no focused learning (radical Unschooling) to making your own curriculum, to building a learning program based on the child's input. 

    Quoting Rust.n.Gears:

    It really depends on who you talk to. I am told by my local group that I unschool because we do not use a structured curriculum that you purchase outright. I make my own curriculum, teach my children things that are outside the norm of other families, we use the television a lot, and we learn from the world around us. I will center my child's curriculum around their interests which I just think makes sense. My kids love cooking and my teens want to go to cooking school. So yeah they get a lot of cooking classes. Oh and we have no structured time schedule. People tell me they school from 9-1 with breaks in between. We teach the kids all day long. Some of it is with books, some in the kitchen, some at the library, at a craft group, at a co-op, in the park, etc. We learn everywhere. I can't imagine the concept of stopping at a certain time. We were learning a new technique for searing the skin on a duck tonight around 10 pm. We plan to try it out tomorrow night for dinner. The term unschooling is just so broad that it is hard to define. 


  • awilliams77
    January 28, 2013 at 1:29 PM


    Not mixed up, eclectic! That's what I call myself, anyway.

    We  have used unit studies, some workbooks and textbooks, library books, co-op classes throughout the years.

    Our 22 year old is graduating with a B.A. In psychology in a few months, our 20 year old is a certified massage therapist, our 17 year old is a part time nanny planning to go into cosmetology when she is old enough, and our 13 year old is still "in school".  I have gone more toward I unschooling in the last few years, mostly with him. He does take a math class at a co-op on Mondays, by agreement, and is responsible to manage his assignments. He is also taking an electrical engineering class at a local museum, building flashlights and such with other homeschoolers. He takes karate 2x a week at a local rec center.  That is the extent of our structure. Everything else is self directed. He loves to read, a series at a time.

    our state does not require annual testing, and I made and printed diplomas for my older ones, when needed.

    Quoting KrissyKC:

    cool... thanks for the answers....

    I think most homeschoolers bring in SOME un-schooling techniques...    at least we do.. and we have curriculum and a schedule...   but we have lots of child-led opportunities to learn, too.

    They are really interested in their own country, so I've focused on that...

    They want to get into Astronomy, so I'm looking into buying Apologia Astronomy and adding field trips and library days that center around this subject, too.

    But, I love having curricula for math and english, though...   my kids don't mind them either, because we even go a little child led there... there are times, when they really don't want to do it or want to stop, we let them and move onto something else.

    So I dunno what to call my own style... mixxed up???




  • buzymom93
    January 28, 2013 at 3:09 PM


    this exactly!!! 

    Quoting usmom3:

     It is what I would call a basic understanding of it because unschooling is so much more then that. When you chose to unschool you are being confident in the fact that your child/children will learn all that they need to learn in life as the need arises in there lives. You are the fasilitator providing them with tools & materials to learn any & all things. Some of us unschoolers like to do a thing called strewing (strewing is leaving interesting books, toys, games, tools or matterials around where the children will find them on their own)in hopes that it will interest them. Everyday I spend an hour or so on the Internet looking for cool new science information to share with my kids (they love science). Books we read inspire their interest in history (my 9 & 7 y/o have asked to learn about The Titanic, Egypt & many other historic times/places/events). It is not the "lazy" way to homeschool like a lot of people think it is. I find that it can be more challenging for me because I have to always be ready to assist them in any & all their interest & pursuits.



  • buzymom93
    January 28, 2013 at 3:12 PM


    this is a great way to explain it!!!

    Quoting usmom3:

     We don't teach in the way you are thinking. When I would play with them when they where young we would count the blocks & sort them in to colors as part of our play. When ever we see a train we count the train cars (this is how they learned to count to 100). Cooking has been how they have learned fractions. My 9y/o DD has taught herself how to skip count. We explained to her how skip counting is like multiplications, she now knows how to do that too.

    For writing my daughter wants to leave notes for me so she had to learn to write so she could. I would write down what she wanted to put & she would copy it, that's how she learned.

    For us everything is learned as part of life & needs being met. As they grow they find things they want/need to know to accomplish a goal they have for themselves, we are here to help them learn those things when the time comes. It is all about what they want to learn not what I think they should learn.

    The most important thing they are learning is to know how to learn on their own! When they have all the skills needed to pursue knowledge they will never need an instructor/teacher to help them!

    Quoting KrissyKC:

    So, if your child actually doesn't want to learn math for a long period of time... do you just not teach math??

    Or are there SOME basic subjects that you kinda teach them anyway... like math, basic reading and writing...?


     



  • buzymom93
    January 28, 2013 at 3:15 PM


    in oregon we only test at the end of grades 3, 5, 8, and 10 and only have to send them in if asked to do so

    Quoting MommyTo5Boys:

    But don't they still have to take yearly tests from the school district to prove that they are learning and you are teaching them? I know that is how it is here in NY anyway.




  • buzymom93
    January 28, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    you can also learn alot about Unschooling at the following websites:

    http://sandradodd.com/unschooling.html

    http://sandradodd.com/help

    http://www.holtgws.com/


  • MommyTo5Boys
    January 28, 2013 at 3:26 PM

    Wow, I'm really starting to realize how much NY sucks!

    Quoting buzymom93:


    in oregon we only test at the end of grades 3, 5, 8, and 10 and only have to send them in if asked to do so

    Quoting MommyTo5Boys:

    But don't they still have to take yearly tests from the school district to prove that they are learning and you are teaching them? I know that is how it is here in NY anyway.





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