Re: [Discuss-sudbury-model] New to list, questions

From: Sally Rosloff <>
Date: Sun Mar 14 12:42:00 2004

Thank you for your reply. I have read many of your posts in the archives
and find them interesting and thought provoking.

What you describe in your reply is exactly what we experienced with our son
at a very young age but I didn't come to understand it as you were able
to. In hindsight, now that I am where I am in my own evolution, I can see
it much more clearly. We knew it intuitively and that is why we took him
out of school and why we finally accepted him, rather than what everyone
was trying to tell us, but we didn't have the "dawning" until very recently!

In fact, I became a part of a start-up charter school because it talked of
respecting the child, of being set up with no rewards and punishments but
rather with working through things in relationship and setting it up for
our natural intrinsic motivation to flourish, of centering curriculum
around an integrated social studies core to build community and start with
the knowledge kids bring with them, etc. It was so far from the
traditional teacher centered classroom in so many respects that it seemed
cutting edge. After almost 4 years of working with it (and by no means is
it realized as it is supposed to be) I have come in my own learning to
understand that we are still imposing on the children, no matter how well
intentioned. For some reason I wasn't able to get this sooner. But my
discomfort set me to searching again on the net and I was ready to find the
Sudbury model. I have immersed myself in it the past week and feel myself
undergoing yet another internal paradigm shift. (I had also just read the
book "What are Schools For?" by Ron Miller which details the history of
education in America, outlines the people in the last 200 years who have
advocated for something different and what holistic education means,
although I don't think he specifically talked about Sudbury. That also
helped move me along in my understanding.)

So, here I am, trying to absorb this shift and wondering about my future
with it. I really appreciate the insight and responses made possible
through the list...a big plus of technology!


At 10:37 AM 3/14/2004 -0500, you wrote:
>Hi Sally,
>Thanks, You write:
>>My son, just turned 18, has taught me, by being the person
>>he is, about the Sudbury model, without knowing it as that. We took him
>>out of school in the 8th grade and finally let him "live life" and I am
>>awed at who he is at only 18.
>When out son was about 1, we started looking at lots and lots of
>preschools and in between all of them we would notice how just regular
>ordinary people would interact with him. Many, most, would comment or
>interact from some "role". Their interactions would be to say "well he
>sure is cute" or they would pat him on the head. But, then, there were a
>very few who would interact with him as a person to a person. These
>interractions were simply qualitatively different. Both he and the other
>person would become very engaged and often animated. Put in relief against
>the much more usual and prevailing interaction of seeing a child and not a
>person, the much rarer instances of person to person interactions stood
>out as stunning. During this time, while making the tons of school visits,
>the question did dawn on us: "might there be a place that knew about and
>allowed and accepted interactions between people?"
>Warm Regards,
>Bill Richardson
Received on Sun Mar 14 2004 - 12:41:35 EST

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