"At least not of the traditional, compulsory, watch-the-clock-until-the-bell-rings kind. As a growing movement of unschoolers believe, a steady diet of standardized testing and indoor inactivity is choking the creativity right out of our kids. The alternative: set 'em free."
"John Holt and Paul Tough are a half-century apart. Both were interested in children and how they learned. One wrote a book called How Children Learn, the other a book called How Children Succeed. Their juxtaposition has a lot to tell us about how we think about and treat our young people."
School is a prison - and damaging our kids - We’re not surprised that learning is unpleasant. We think of it as bad-tasting medicine, tough to swallow but good for children in the long run. Some people even think that the very unpleasantness of school is good for children, so they will learn to tolerate unpleasantness, because life after school is unpleasant. Perhaps this sad view of life derives from schooling.
"One parental right that is coming under attack more and more is the right to administer reasonable corporal punishment." Blogger Libby Anne of Love, Joy, Feminism (who was homeschooled) has written a detailed three-part series (1, 2, 3) describing how the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA)'s mission to insure the rights of homeschooling parents has come to include making it harder for CPS or other agencies to receive or act on reports of child abuse. [more inside]
Whatever Happened to Kendall Hailey? At age 16, Kendall Hailey decided she'd had enough of formal schooling, and became an autodidact. She wrote about her experience in her charming memoir entitled The Day I Became an Autodidact and the Advice, Adventures, and Acrimonies that Befell Me Thereafter. After that, she pretty much fell out of the public eye. In December 2012, Jennifer Paull of BookRiot tracked her down and asked her about her past, present, and future, and whether she'd recommend her own child follow her path (and whatever became of Matthew). Part 1. Part 2. [more inside]
Parents Kathy Witterick and David Stocker welcomed their third baby into the world this year, but they won't tell anyone whether Storm is a boy or a girl. “We thought that if we delayed sharing that information, in this case hopefully, we might knock off a couple million of those messages by the time that Storm decides Storm would like to share,” says Witterick Storm's brothers, Jazz and Kio are also encouraged to wear their hair however they wish, and pick out clothing they like. [more inside]
Not Back To School Camp is a place where unschooled teenagers (previously, 2) can go to meet, teach, and learn from other unschoolers. Despite doubts and criticism, unschoolers and homeschoolers are making their way to college [more inside]
A couple of months ago venture capital firm Union Square Ventures got together a bunch of smart folks to spend a day talking about how the education establishment in the US can be changed to make it more relevant and useful to many more kids. The results, as evidenced by the transcript, and the summaries by Union Square partners Brad Burnham and Fred Wilson indicate that there is no shortage of interesting ideas for how to do a better job preparing our kids for the future. The unanswered question is how to put any of this into action on a scale that will make a difference. A charter school here, charter school there, and a couple of million homeschoolers are changing the system at a glacial pace, at best.
Dinosaurs preach Young Earth creationism. "The Fossil Finders are a group of eight homeschooled children on a search for the [Biblical] truth on fossils." (This shorter excerpt cuts to the main argument, involving the discovery of flexible T. Rex tissue. Scientists remain interested in the find.) The video was produced by World's Biggest Dinosaurs, the people who now own the roadside landmark, Cabazon Dinosaurs -- and have turned it into a creation museum. [Previously]
Evan M. O'Dorney, a 13-year-old speller from Danville, Calif., won the 2007 Scripps National Spelling Bee, with the final word "serrefine". Here is an interesting interview with the winner. Did you say my name wrong?
A whole new spin on "Home Schooling". Child-endangerment charges follow apparent sharing of Ecstasy with his kids on HBO show. I can think of a number of documentaries I've seen where illegal activity was taking place but never heard of the participant/s being arrested. Dangerous precedence? (via Obscure Store)
Home schooling goes mainstream (cover story of Time). Although the article is appallingly poorly-written (does Time have editors anymore?), it points to double-digit growth with only a few anecdotal chestnuts about "socialization" to throw against the trend.
Home schooling. While it can be beneficial to some, I still have to wonder about the quality of education and the social stagnation kids may be subjected to...