RE: DSM: The homeschool curriculum

From: Scott David Gray (sgray@aramis.sudval.org)
Date: Sat Dec 08 2001 - 11:47:36 EST


On Sat, 8 Dec 2001, Liz Reid&Errol Strelnikoff wrote:

> Then I am confused, you say that Sudbury School does not have a
> curriculum and yet you seem to think that because the word homeschool
> uses the word school it must therefore have a curriculum?
> Liz

  Actually, my concern is not around the term school, but
around the notion of a child being areound her/his parents
(or _any_ specific group of adults) for such an overwhelming
amount of the time.

  In just about every culture without schools, children
naturally by about age 4-6 start seeking each other out in
order to spend time with other kids unsupervised by adults.
And even when those kids do spend time with adults, they
rarely spend it with their parents.

  I think that there is wisdom in this, for both the parents
and the children. By leaving the child to own her/his own
day _away_ from the parents (the most important people in
her/his life), the child can develop a richer relationship
with her/his parents.
  Hrm... I'm sort of making Thomas Aquinas' argument here.
:-) Aquinas suggests that even though his deity could have
made a world whole exactly the way he wanted, he gave free
will to humanity because he wants humans to share in the
experience of _creation_. Likewise, sure the home is a fine
environment and community, but the child wants to share in
the experience of _building_ a community; this in the long
run can make the relationship between the parents and child
stronger (between God and man, according to Aquinas).

> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: owner-discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org
> > [mailto:owner-discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org]On Behalf Of
> > Scott David
> > Gray
> > Sent: Saturday, December 08, 2001 6:28 AM
> > To: discuss-sudbury-model@sudval.org
> > Subject: Re: DSM: The homeschool curriculum
> >
> >
> > On Fri, 7 Dec 2001, Liz Reid&Errol Strelnikoff wrote:
> >
> > > It was mentioned in a previous post that changing from
> > public school to
> > > homeschooling was not so different as they both involved curriculum.
> > > Surely Sudbury Valley must have a curriculum also as it is also a
> > > school?
> > > Liz
> >
> > This is where the word "school" sometimes gets us into
> > trouble.
> >
> > To the extent that one uses the term "school" to mean a
> > place which facilitates learning, I'd say that a Sudbury
> > model school -- which gives people time and resources to use
> > as in the living of their own lives and pursuit of their own
> > interests -- fills the bill.
> >
> > But, insofar as the school itself does not start it's
> > relationship with a student with a plan for how any given
> > student will unfold -- that there is no "curriculum" which
> > limits or defines the type or sort of information which will
> > be pursued -- the term "school" is sometimes misleads
> > people.
> >
> > Basically, it is a matter of definition.
> > I believe that I am using the word curriculum to mean the
> > same thing that most people mean by it. But in case I or
> > others do understand the term differently, I'll explain the
> > phenomenon I am referring to with the word "curriculum."
> > Curriculum: a plan, course of study, or set of educational
> > goals, laid out and actively pursued by a school.
> > By this definition, a Sudbury school does not have a
> > curriculum. If one defines "school" as a place with a
> > curriculum, then no -- Sudbury schools are not schools. In
> > fact, I often start talks about the Sudbury model, by
> > pointing out how easy it is to be trapped by our own
> > understandings of words -- I usually ask my audience to just
> > forget the term "school" for a little while when I explain
> > the ways in which a Sudbury community operates.
> > Personally, I find the term school to still have
> > relevence, despite the confusion it generates... Sudbury
> > schools do have a mission that is tied up with the learning
> > process, even though it is not pre-defined, and therefore
> > not a curriculum: to be communities in which people can
> > develop without preconceptions as to what they will develop
> > or unfold into.
> >
> > I don't really care to get into a debate over words. :-)
> > Frankly, if someone else says that "curriculum" means
> > something else, it's no skin off my back. If someone else
> > says that "school" means something else, that doesn't bother
> > me either. I try to use words that the bulk of people
> > around me will understand in the spirit that I used them --
> > I don't pretend to have 100% accuracy with every person,
> > because of real language differences between people.
> >
> > --
> >
> > --Scott David Gray
> > reply to: sgray@sudval.org
> > http://www.unseelie.org/
> > ============================================================
> > Noone really listens to anyone else, and if you try it for a
> > while you'll see why.
> >
> > -- Mignon McLaughlin
> > ============================================================
> >
> >
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-- 
 
--Scott David Gray
reply to: sgray@sudval.org
http://www.unseelie.org/
============================================================
An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called
an idea at all. 

-- Elbert Hubbard ============================================================

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