Deschooling the Deschooling Process

Initially, it can be a very big step to just let go of curriculum. However, after that, there are further steps on the way to fully giving our children’s lives over to God’s leading. 

Relaxed homeschooling is the natural next step when one lets go of the idea of replicating “school at home, only richer/better/more accepted by the child.” The difference between it and unschooling lies in letting go of school at home, but not (yet) our conceptions of “richer/better,” and being content merely with “more accepted by the child” while still trying to live up to school-derived goals such as reading or arithmetic. The following is a compilation of responses by CU moderators explaining ways to get further into the deschooling process. Continue Reading

Almost Anything is Better Than a Workbook

I know that unschoolers don’t use curriculum, but what if your child is asking for it? Is it wrong to give them a workbook and let them go through it?

This questioned is posed a lot in our Facebook group. It will pop up every so often and I always try to answer in specific terms to the discussion and person asking.

My personal response usually goes something like this:

Yes – but with caveats. It’s not “wrong” to give your child a workbook, textbook, or curriculum as a resource to use. Unschoolers are not against those things. In general, we disagree with requiring a child to learn or complete a curricula. If a child is interested in physics there is no reason to deny him any resource that would help him learn it – including schoolish ones.

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Autodidacticism is Contagious

I took this photo of my son, helping his grandmother learn a software program to remind me: my children are and always will be autodidacts. He had no knowledge of this software Grandma wanted help with, but he was there to help give her the confidence she needed to see how to explore and learn what it was she needed to know. If there’s one thing autodidacts know how to do, it’s helping others learn how to be autodidacts themselves. Continue Reading

How do you talk about unschooling?

Sometimes, it seems like the dirty little secret of the homeschooling universe.

For a lot of different reasons, many of them entirely valid, there aren’t too many unschoolers who go beyond the proverbial whispers of “We don’t exactly use a curriculum…” and “Don’t TELL anyone, but we don’t take tests!” when asked about their style by friends and family members. Continue Reading