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« Homeschooling and Fitness | Main | When it Looks Like They're Not Learning »

November 07, 2008

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Karen

Hear, hear! The conflict over 'general knowledge' is in my home - I'm far more of an unschooler than my husband. This works out for me, as the at-home parent, but it's been hard to reconcile my husband's desire for our 2 young boys to show what they're learning - in a concrete, written, organized way - with the boys' need to learn what they want, when they want, how they want.
Thanks very much for this post!

Angi

I agree. This feels much like the "S" word controversy. I can't imagine how anyone would truly want their child's entire set of social skills to come from a set of 20+ peers in a setting with minimal adult interaction and/or supervision. And honestly, to argue that formal schooling is necessary for either social skills or general knowledge is like saying that we as parents do nothing to influence our children and actually prevent everything except formal schooling to affect them.

I am considering switching from more structured homeschooling to unschooling and my husband has this same concern. We are so stuck in measuring progress and going by the state standards that we expect that specific things need to be learned at specific times instead of trusting in their own personal development. I can't say I'm all there yet myself but the idea seems right to me. I'm working on 'deschooling' myself from all those years of education. I appreciate the insights and support I get through this website!

Crimson Wife

In my 16 years of formal education, I somehow managed to avoid taking a single course on world history, economics, and Earth science. Yet I'd be willing to bet that even before I started homeschooling, I would've done better than the average American on a test of basic knowledge about those subjects. Why? Because of all the time I spent reading and watching documentaries on PBS, the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, etc. Fortunately all that time in school never managed to kill off my intrinsic love of learning ;-)

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