[Discuss-sudbury-model] myths of unschooling

From: <JMMancasola_at_aol.com>
Date: Sat Oct 8 10:48:01 2005

Mado's comments about unschoolers in her last post compelled me to re-submit
something I posted on September 21, 2005 - with the hope that it helps to
dispell some common myths about unschoolers. Thank you, Molly Mancasola

Here it is:

As an unschooling parent from California, I would like to let you know that
there are more and more children who are not enrolling in schools of any kind,
and the kids are living  lives of freedom and taking full responsibility for
their own choices.
I have 5 children who during their "school" years, have done nothing that
even remotely resembles school.  In our family, we are each involved in our
community in our own ways - not the "homeschooling community" but the real
community in which we live.  My kids follow their own passions and participate in
activities throughout the community which support their interests and thirst for
knowledge.  Each kid is so different - one of them works with a wilderness
group, another is part of an opera company.  Some of them have participated in an
improv theater group, rock bands, dance companies, orchestras, basketball
teams.   Some of them are interested in activism and work towards social/political
change.  They hike, they play, they care for animals, they cook, they build
things, they do art, they make a lot of messes and are responsible for cleaning
up after themselves.  They are also responsible for raising the money to pay
for the stuff they want to do including buying their own cars to get to where
they want to go once they become teenagers.

They each read whatever they choose to read, learn whatever they want to
learn whenever they want to learn it, and have never had an assignment from their
parents.  None of them have ever asked to go to school - but three of them
have chosen to take themselves out to the community college for classes during
their supposed high school years.

They have meaningful friendships and can hold their own in any social setting
with any age groups. They are comfortable being in groups as well as
comfortable being alone with themselves.  We have a lovely closeness as a family and
as my children become adults, I love seeing the creative ways they find to be
together, and the ways they support one another. 

My eldest (age 20) is thriving in her third year as an English major at
Stanford University.  She got into all four of the selective universities to which
she applied without a highschool diploma.  My 18 year old will hopefully have
the same results as she is currently applying to high quality performing art
schools.

Although we fit the description given to unschoolers, I have never liked to
label what we do as unschooling because it uses two negative words to describe
a very positive way of living. 

Molly Mancasola
Received on Sat Oct 08 2005 - 10:47:25 EDT

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