Christian Unschooling, Part 4: That Pesky Word, “Radical”

“The radical of one century is the conservative of the next. The radical invents the views. When he has worn them out, the conservative adopts them.” ~Mark Twain

I saved this post for last for a few reasons. First, in many ways it’s the most important, because it ties everything together and is at the crux of why we do what we do. It’s also one of the hardest and most frustrating to write, and the one I’ve been losing the most sleep over.

I’ve come to a disheartening realization lately. What I said in part one about feeling like I’m alone in many ways was the truth… too Christian for the unschoolers, too unschooly for the Christians. But the fact is, in some cases that feeling is self-imposed. The unschoolers I know have, as a whole, been extremely welcoming and non-judgmental. As my unschooling circle grows, I’m just more and more thankful for its presence, and proud to be part of it. Continue Reading

Christian Unschooling, Part 3: Humble Yourselves Like a Child

“And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me.”

Jesus had a pretty high opinion of kids. The verse directly before the one above says that “whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” The one before that says, “Unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

I think of these verses every time someone questions whether or not it is biblical to unschool. I think of these before I think of those about freedom. I think of these before I think of those about parenting. I think of these before I think of those about education. Why? Because no matter what else an unschooling journey is, it begins with the children. If it were not for the children, there would be no unschooling. Continue Reading

Christian Unschooling, Part 2: Freedom

“It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery.”

I don’t like being told what to do. I’m the person who, when told to do something, will likely want to immediately do the exact opposite, just on general principle. Lots of unnecessary rules make me uneasy. Unsolicited advice makes my skin crawl.

I was never one to march to anyone’s drum but my own. Continue Reading

Christian Unschooling, Part 1: Background

This post is a response. Actually, it’s a response to several responses to a response to a response to a call for guest posts. Got all that? Doesn’t matter. There were a lot of things said, things that ignited something in me. And because the threads that were ultimately spun off the original spool turned into a mud-slinging fray which I had no interest in joining, I came here… here where I could share my perspective, in a mud-free environment. As the title suggests, this is only part one. There will be more, but first a little background: Continue Reading

Giving in to My Kids (or, Why I Unschool)

A friend who replicates school at home in her homeschool once said to me, in a comparison of our parenting and homeschooling styles, “I know you give in to your children, and that’s okay, that’s your choice …”

Frankly, I was too taken aback at the flat statement to respond at the time, but I thought about it a lot afterward. And here’s what I thought: I don’t give in to my kids … but I can see why she thinks that I do.

What My Friend Sees

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Third Culture School – When Christians Unschool in a Homeschooling World

Have you ever heard the term Third Culture Kids?  It’s a term used pretty often to describe Missionary’s kids.  They’re from one culture, but they grow up in another. So they don’t fully fit in either.

That’s how I feel as a Christian unschooler.

Most of the unschoolers that I’m aware of, especially radical unschoolers, are not Christian. They are free lovin’, blowin’ in the wind hippies.

And most of the homeschoolers I know are staunchly Christian.  No free lovin’ or wind blowin’ involved. Continue Reading