Homeschooling Moms

celtic77dragon
UNSCHOOLERS -- EDITED!!
January 22 at 9:08 AM

I do not have a problem with everyone discussing unschooling in general. However, I did want to point out (because I wasn't specific enough in the original post) that I was trying to discuss what is within these quotes. 


Do you think that it is important and necessary to know about "the great works" and significant information about your country (people, events, documents, and laws that had a significant impact on the country and way of life)?

Do you value this knowledge? Do you feel like you value it any less than?  -- I ask this because I feel like she is giving the impression that her family or other unschoolers sometimes value 'typical academics' (I am using that term loosely) less than others. 

In DM's statement, she mentions forgetting this information that she was exposed to. I am assuming that the arguement there was that if we forget the information anyways, how important was it to begin with - what was the worth in covering it. So would you agree with that? 




The quotes that I am interested in are at two times in the video:

1:12

Interviewer: "Doesn't the child need to know who George Washington, FDR, and JFK are?"

D.M: "Well, I don't know. Do you think that they do? Do you think that is necessary?"

7:23

Interviewer: "What about when the learning gets more sophisticated? How do you expose them to Shakesphere or Twain or Henry James. How do you teach them the great works and the great historians if you can't get them to sit down and learn?"

D.M: "Well, I think some people might value that more than others. I honestly don't remember - yes although I know their names - I don't remember the details that I learned in school - about the historians for example."

  

Important Note: Dayna Martin is a radical unschooler. I do not know if Dayna Martin is the best example. I just know that her face is very front and center. She has a ton of youtube videos, been on wife swap as well as Dr Phil, she has done number interviews, she has written a few books, spoke at a number of conferences, etc. She ALSO has come under fire (maybe that was just bound to happen with all of the exposure). 

However, this does NOT deter me from wanting to know how unschoolers feel about her specific statements/questions in the above quotes.


Quote Source: Dayna Martin interview w/ ABC news: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuhfhRLwTB0 

The actual video was removed because I felt that it confused and distracted from the questions that I am trying to ask. I just wanted to have a source for where my quotes came from. 

Replies

  • darkmusepinup
    January 22 at 11:07 PM
    I'm far from passionate at this point lol
    but I am starting to look into the how's, just in case. I don't know how much longer I can allow my children to be in public "education"

    Quoting KickButtMama:

    No bashing here, HS isn't as hard/horrible as many think it will be, but it is by no means a cake walk! I am the least patient person I know, but make it as a homeschooler. But I'm the first to agree homeschool is NOT for everyone. You have to be super passionate about it or you'll sink. 

    Quoting darkmusepinup: I have to agree with this. I don't homeschool (lack the patience, you guys are amazing btw), however I find that my kids have learned more by going to museums with us than they did when they breached the subject in school. I hardly remember anything I learned in school and I HATED every minute of it, just as my kids do. :-(

    I have been able to learn more as an adult, with free will, than as a child locked down into one single curriculum. I hate the fact that I don't have patience, drive, etc to teach my kids at home, but I wouldn't be teaching them much more so please don't bash me, I have my many reasons.

    I just wanted you to know that your words made sense



    Quoting KickButtMama:

    First it's important to point out that she is a Radical Unschoolers, which is a fairly small population. Secondly, just because I don't have a curriculum for the presidents, let's say, doesn't mean my kids won't learn about them. My job as facilitator is to have learning materials available for my kids. For instance, when unpacking yesterday, they found a placemat with images of the presidents on it. This sparked a 2 hour discussion/investigation into who was the best president. This involved a poll of all the parents, looking online and even in an encyclopedia. None of it was sparked by me, none came from me parroting presidential facts and dates to them. Yet they learned. 

    I think this mom was trying to maybe get that across. That learning can be done if we surround the kids with educational things. Furthermore, kids who are not routinely tested do not see the point in answering quizzing questions. For a time I was so frustrated that we would do a lesson then I'd ask my child questions about what we learned. When they never answered correctly, I was convinced they hadn't learned anything....when in frustration I asked why they do that they said, "well, we know you already know the answers, so found it funny that 10 minutes after explaining you had already forgotten the info" they didn't see the point in answering correctly. *eyeroll* 

    but I know I remember less than 1/4 of what I learned at public school. I never was very good at wrote memorization. The things I remember were when I was allowed to explore and follow my interests. That's the main idea behind Unschooling. Letting the kids interest spark.

    we are technically unschoolers, though I prefer the term child-led learners. I've tried schooling in a variety of ways - from super strict textbook based, to radical Unschooling. What works for me is a melding of the two - I'm a textbook person myself so had a super hard time w/ radical Unschooling. So instead the kids give me things they are interested and I find tons of resources that kids can pick and choose from. But I'm fully aware the kids might change to a new interest at anytime which would mean more work for me. Loll


  • celtic77dragon
    January 22 at 11:10 PM

    I wouldn't consider myself "passionate" about homeschooling. Just consistent. I have a plan, I adapt as I need to, I hand in my paperwork to the state, and it is all cool. 

    Quoting darkmusepinup: I'm far from passionate at this point lol
    but I am starting to look into the how's, just in case. I don't know how much longer I can allow my children to be in public "education"
    Quoting KickButtMama:

    No bashing here, HS isn't as hard/horrible as many think it will be, but it is by no means a cake walk! I am the least patient person I know, but make it as a homeschooler. But I'm the first to agree homeschool is NOT for everyone. You have to be super passionate about it or you'll sink. 

    Quoting darkmusepinup: 
  • Chasing3
    January 23 at 7:29 AM

    i'll maintain that I somewhat agree. I do not think it matters if you don't know those particular names listed. Now, I think it would be hard to be educated in the US and never even hear those names -- but I'll admit I did not know who Henry James was. Now, as an educated person I can take a pretty good guess that he's an American author, and I have the research skills to look him up.

    I think in general, it doesn't matter what one studies and when. And I'd go so far as to say I don't think one is precluded from being successful and very knowledgable in their chosen field if they stop studing in one area completely - even something considered so important like math or science or literature. I think if a high schooler stopped taking any math and only studied literature, they'd be fine in life. And vice-versa in other subjects. Now if a kid wanted to be an engineer but decided to never take a math class, he might be kinda out of luck! But I"m fairly sure most kids are going to gravitate to their interests. IN fact, this actually holds pretty true... how many of us know a scientist who hasn't read a fiction novel in decades? Or who knows someone in a creative field who takes out a calculator to figure out the tip at a restaurant?

    I know for myself, I totally failed 10th grade chemistry. It was a combination of me being a teen, a bad social dynamic at the school, I was kind of bullied, the teacher probably was no good either... Anyway I honestly ended the year with an F and never did any work or even tried to understand any of it. (My parents transfered me to a private school and they never made me retake chemistry!) But I know today if I had to be enrolled in a chemistry class, I could get and A and I'd find a tutor or study my rear off to get one. Also, I took art through school, never particularly seriously, but I was good at art. I only took the classes the schools put me in so I did not seek out art. I went to a liberal arts college and took 3 college level arts classes towards the end of college. WIth a minimal background and only a few portfoliio pieces, I took the train down to NYC and applied to Parsons School of Design and I got in! Plus, since I already had a college degree, they said I didn't have to take any of their liberal arts courses and all I took was art courses and I got a BFA in graphic design... so I"m not totally convinced pushing a lot of one topic on a kid will make them great in that area, and I really think someone (who is smart) can totally catch up on something they never learned explicitly.

    FWIW, I'm not an unschooler in my approach. And I guess re-reading all that I wrote, it sums up to I guess I would not agree with really radical unschooling - if that means purposefully NOT presenting cultural history, politics, arts, literature, disccoveries....

  • paganbaby
    January 23 at 10:45 AM

    I really like how you put this!

    Quoting Chasing3:

    i'll maintain that I somewhat agree. I do not think it matters if you don't know those particular names listed. Now, I think it would be hard to be educated in the US and never even hear those names -- but I'll admit I did not know who Henry James was. Now, as an educated person I can take a pretty good guess that he's an American author, and I have the research skills to look him up.

    I think in general, it doesn't matter what one studies and when. And I'd go so far as to say I don't think one is precluded from being successful and very knowledgable in their chosen field if they stop studing in one area completely - even something considered so important like math or science or literature. I think if a high schooler stopped taking any math and only studied literature, they'd be fine in life. And vice-versa in other subjects. Now if a kid wanted to be an engineer but decided to never take a math class, he might be kinda out of luck! But I"m fairly sure most kids are going to gravitate to their interests. IN fact, this actually holds pretty true... how many of us know a scientist who hasn't read a fiction novel in decades? Or who knows someone in a creative field who takes out a calculator to figure out the tip at a restaurant?

    I know for myself, I totally failed 10th grade chemistry. It was a combination of me being a teen, a bad social dynamic at the school, I was kind of bullied, the teacher probably was no good either... Anyway I honestly ended the year with an F and never did any work or even tried to understand any of it. (My parents transfered me to a private school and they never made me retake chemistry!) But I know today if I had to be enrolled in a chemistry class, I could get and A and I'd find a tutor or study my rear off to get one. Also, I took art through school, never particularly seriously, but I was good at art. I only took the classes the schools put me in so I did not seek out art. I went to a liberal arts college and took 3 college level arts classes towards the end of college. WIth a minimal background and only a few portfoliio pieces, I took the train down to NYC and applied to Parsons School of Design and I got in! Plus, since I already had a college degree, they said I didn't have to take any of their liberal arts courses and all I took was art courses and I got a BFA in graphic design... so I"m not totally convinced pushing a lot of one topic on a kid will make them great in that area, and I really think someone (who is smart) can totally catch up on something they never learned explicitly.

    FWIW, I'm not an unschooler in my approach. And I guess re-reading all that I wrote, it sums up to I guess I would not agree with really radical unschooling - if that means purposefully NOT presenting cultural history, politics, arts, literature, disccoveries....

    I'm sure this doesn't hold true for most radical unschoolers though. I don't see why RU wouldn't strew *leave materials around* same as unschoolers.

  • celtic77dragon
    January 23 at 11:53 AM

    I think most people know who these people are though because society HAS educated them to know them. That is one of the things that formal education tries to do - make sure that there is a body of knowledge similar and shared among most of society. It is assumed that the exposure will inspire you to dig deeper and find whatever else there is that interests you.  

    I didn't know who Henry James was either - I had to look it up. However, I was not given a formal education and I am not a huge fan of fiction. I read prodominately nonfiction books, though I do make sure to read at least two classics every year. The first time I tried to read Nathanial Hawthorne, I had to sit there with pen, paper, and dictionary. It was definitely a challenge for me to get through (I was like 19yrs old at the time) - my brain was definitely not used to being challenged so much when reading. 

    I agree that not everyone is going to be good in every area of study - or even needs to be. However, to never be exposed to it? No. I just can't get behind that mentality. It is the exact thing that was done to me (for different reasons) and I have spent my adult life trying to make up for it. College was not an option for me straight out of high school because I would not have been able to pass an entrance exam and would have become inundated with the work. 

    Quoting Chasing3:

    i'll maintain that I somewhat agree. I do not think it matters if you don't know those particular names listed. Now, I think it would be hard to be educated in the US and never even hear those names -- but I'll admit I did not know who Henry James was. Now, as an educated person I can take a pretty good guess that he's an American author, and I have the research skills to look him up.

    I think in general, it doesn't matter what one studies and when. And I'd go so far as to say I don't think one is precluded from being successful and very knowledgable in their chosen field if they stop studing in one area completely - even something considered so important like math or science or literature. I think if a high schooler stopped taking any math and only studied literature, they'd be fine in life. And vice-versa in other subjects. Now if a kid wanted to be an engineer but decided to never take a math class, he might be kinda out of luck! But I"m fairly sure most kids are going to gravitate to their interests. IN fact, this actually holds pretty true... how many of us know a scientist who hasn't read a fiction novel in decades? Or who knows someone in a creative field who takes out a calculator to figure out the tip at a restaurant?

    I know for myself, I totally failed 10th grade chemistry. It was a combination of me being a teen, a bad social dynamic at the school, I was kind of bullied, the teacher probably was no good either... Anyway I honestly ended the year with an F and never did any work or even tried to understand any of it. (My parents transfered me to a private school and they never made me retake chemistry!) But I know today if I had to be enrolled in a chemistry class, I could get and A and I'd find a tutor or study my rear off to get one. Also, I took art through school, never particularly seriously, but I was good at art. I only took the classes the schools put me in so I did not seek out art. I went to a liberal arts college and took 3 college level arts classes towards the end of college. WIth a minimal background and only a few portfoliio pieces, I took the train down to NYC and applied to Parsons School of Design and I got in! Plus, since I already had a college degree, they said I didn't have to take any of their liberal arts courses and all I took was art courses and I got a BFA in graphic design... so I"m not totally convinced pushing a lot of one topic on a kid will make them great in that area, and I really think someone (who is smart) can totally catch up on something they never learned explicitly.

    FWIW, I'm not an unschooler in my approach. And I guess re-reading all that I wrote, it sums up to I guess I would not agree with really radical unschooling - if that means purposefully NOT presenting cultural history, politics, arts, literature, disccoveries....


  • KickButtMama
    January 23 at 7:29 PM

    That's the big misconception with Unschooling. My kids will be exposed to every subject under the sun, way more than is encompassed in any box curriculum. We don't do it in a nice step-by-step checklist like more curriculum, but my kids will be exposed to it all the same. My kids one day heard the name George Washington. When they asked me who he was, they knew I wouldn't tell them in a short answer. They ended up watching a 4-day miniseries on the Revolutionary war, they needed up reading about the constitution, etc. They have done chemistry, physics, philosophy, etc. None of which was from a textbook/curriculum. Are there unschoolers like that chick? Those who think kids will just miraculously absorb knowledge by breathing? Probably, but I think they are very few. Instead, most unschoolers make their home a place that inspires kids to ask questions - I want to write a story, so how do I spell these words....I want to build this apparatus, how do I plan it out? I heard this name, who was that person. Etc....then the information is all readily available and the kids know where to go to get it. They remember the info because They were the ones seeking knowledge....rather than me sitting them down one day and telling them what they will learn. KWIM? So most unschoolers learn just as much - subjects wise - as any other student. They are still fully capable of going to college or taking the SAT. They just get the information in a different manner. 

    Quoting celtic77dragon:

    I agree that not everyone is going to be good in every area of study - or even needs to be. However, to never be exposed to it? No. I just can't get behind that mentality. It is the exact thing that was done to me (for different reasons) and I have spent my adult life trying to make up for it. College was not an option for me straight out of high school because I would not have been able to pass an entrance exam and would have become inundated with the work. 

    Quoting Chasing3:



  • celtic77dragon
    January 24 at 4:06 AM

    I was responding to something specific that someone said. I am not speaking of unschoolers in any general sense. 

    As for the misconceptions; I have realized that everyone defines what they do differently even amongst the sub-genres like "unschoolers" or even "classical education". It is easier to just hear each person out and respond directly. 

    I was on Sandra Dodds website (one of the pioneers to unschooling - if I am correct) and she even struggles to define what some of these terms are (unschooling and radical unschooling). She has a page devoted to people posting what it means to them. It varies greatly. In its most simplest form I can only come up with "a more child led learning" as a definition - and maybe even some would argue that. So it just seems unwise to have too many conceptions. So like I did here, I threw some questions out there, read what each person said, and then responded specifically to what they said.  


    Quoting KickButtMama:

    That's the big misconception with Unschooling. My kids will be exposed to every subject under the sun, way more than is encompassed in any box curriculum. We don't do it in a nice step-by-step checklist like more curriculum, but my kids will be exposed to it all the same. My kids one day heard the name George Washington. When they asked me who he was, they knew I wouldn't tell them in a short answer. They ended up watching a 4-day miniseries on the Revolutionary war, they needed up reading about the constitution, etc. They have done chemistry, physics, philosophy, etc. None of which was from a textbook/curriculum. Are there unschoolers like that chick? Those who think kids will just miraculously absorb knowledge by breathing? Probably, but I think they are very few. Instead, most unschoolers make their home a place that inspires kids to ask questions - I want to write a story, so how do I spell these words....I want to build this apparatus, how do I plan it out? I heard this name, who was that person. Etc....then the information is all readily available and the kids know where to go to get it. They remember the info because They were the ones seeking knowledge....rather than me sitting them down one day and telling them what they will learn. KWIM? So most unschoolers learn just as much - subjects wise - as any other student. They are still fully capable of going to college or taking the SAT. They just get the information in a different manner. 

    Quoting celtic77dragon:

    I agree that not everyone is going to be good in every area of study - or even needs to be. However, to never be exposed to it? No. I just can't get behind that mentality. It is the exact thing that was done to me (for different reasons) and I have spent my adult life trying to make up for it. College was not an option for me straight out of high school because I would not have been able to pass an entrance exam and would have become inundated with the work. 

    Quoting Chasing3:




  • firefay
    by firefay
    January 24 at 10:35 AM

    i'm leaning towards unschooling for my kids but guided.  What I do is ask which learning things they want to do for the day, and they will pick videos and something else.  My 5-year-old likes documentaries.  She likes space and really likes my human body encyclopedia.  She is a really good reader and will pick out a pile of books to go over.  My 3-year-old needs more one-on-one still but will sit looking through books and other materials. I learn much better on my own as well.  I can do a correspondence program with 2-3 years to complete it much better than traditional college courses that have assignments and quizzes due all the time. 

    The oldest kid in the Martin family is Devin. He's 16 or 17 now and makes metal works- knives, other stuff.  Does fire dancing.  I follow Dayna's page on Facebook.  She has updated pictures.  Joe is a photographer, and I am "friends"/following on Facebook.  Pretty creative family, but their lifestyle is definately not for everyone.

  • celtic77dragon
    January 24 at 12:04 PM

    Sorry - I edited this to better clarify. 

    Quoting celtic77dragon:

    I was responding to something specific that someone said. I am not speaking of unschoolers in any general sense. 

    As for the misconceptions; I have realized that everyone defines what they do differently even amongst the sub-genres like "unschoolers" or even "classical education". It is easier to just hear each person out and respond directly. 

    I was on Sandra Dodds website (one of the pioneers to unschooling - if I am correct) and she even struggles to define what some of these terms are (unschooling and radical unschooling). She has a page devoted to people posting what it means to them. It varies greatly. In its most simplest form I can only come up with "a more child led learning" as a definition - and maybe even some would argue that. So it just seems unwise to have too many conceptions. So like I did here, I threw some questions out there, read what each person said, and then responded specifically to what they said.  


    Quoting KickButtMama:

    That's the big misconception with Unschooling. My kids will be exposed to every subject under the sun, way more than is encompassed in any box curriculum. We don't do it in a nice step-by-step checklist like more curriculum, but my kids will be exposed to it all the same. My kids one day heard the name George Washington. When they asked me who he was, they knew I wouldn't tell them in a short answer. They ended up watching a 4-day miniseries on the Revolutionary war, they needed up reading about the constitution, etc. They have done chemistry, physics, philosophy, etc. None of which was from a textbook/curriculum. Are there unschoolers like that chick? Those who think kids will just miraculously absorb knowledge by breathing? Probably, but I think they are very few. Instead, most unschoolers make their home a place that inspires kids to ask questions - I want to write a story, so how do I spell these words....I want to build this apparatus, how do I plan it out? I heard this name, who was that person. Etc....then the information is all readily available and the kids know where to go to get it. They remember the info because They were the ones seeking knowledge....rather than me sitting them down one day and telling them what they will learn. KWIM? So most unschoolers learn just as much - subjects wise - as any other student. They are still fully capable of going to college or taking the SAT. They just get the information in a different manner. 

    Quoting celtic77dragon:

    I agree that not everyone is going to be good in every area of study - or even needs to be. However, to never be exposed to it? No. I just can't get behind that mentality. It is the exact thing that was done to me (for different reasons) and I have spent my adult life trying to make up for it. College was not an option for me straight out of high school because I would not have been able to pass an entrance exam and would have become inundated with the work. 

    Quoting Chasing3:





Homeschooling Moms