Friday, February 26

OK, so what kind of edumacational things did we do yesterday? (Fri, Feb 26, 2010)
Every day Stephanie writes about 1,000 to 2,000 words. Sometimes stories, usually RPG participation, in which a bunch of girls from all over the world write a story and each real girl writes the part of several fictional characters. I don't insist on reading her work to give her a grade; if she writes that much, she will be a good writer. Period.

She and her friends are doing an informal NaNoMo, a program in which participants write a 60k word novel in 30 days. No editing, just pump out the rough draft. Steph and I (Dad) talk about it every year in November, but so far we haven't done it.

All this is to say that yesterday, Steph stayed at the office all day, acting as manager, and then spent the evening at a special youth group function. She did not write that day.
But she did draw. She has a graphics pad and she spent the whole day working on a drawing she was collaborating with another girl on. I love to let her focus on something for as long as she wants. It encourages attention span and sends the opposite message as the ever-present ringing bells we find in schools. The bells say,"Put it away. Hurry to the next thing now. What you were doing was important during that half-hour, but not important enough to finish it. What is more important is rushing into the next activity that will not be important enough to finish when the next bell rings."

Our policy says,"Do it for as long as you want to. Finish it if you have a passion (or a deadline) for your project. I find it humorous that we hear about how schooling gets kids ready for the real world as if in a job you are never allowed to finish a task--never adjust your schedule to finish a project. As if nothing you start is worth finishing, on to the next fruitless activity when a bell rings. John Holt says this programs kids to know they never have to finish anything, they just wait to be saved by the bell. Well, this is not supposed to be a rant, but a defense of my decision to let Stephanie work for more than 7 hours on a drawing of a princess.

Eric and Cassie spent the day quietly working on flipnotes. Colleen will write a blog entry on flipnotes and how educational and creative it is.

One more thing: so many people say kids need to go to school to get an education so they can get a job. That's OK if that's what you want for your offspring, but not for mine. I have actually had people say that my kids won't be ready to enter the workforce because of our style of educating them. Well that's not our reality. My kids are creative and coercive schooling would crush that creative spirit. We have encountered teachers and experts who state their intentions to pound that round peg into that square hole, beating out all unwanted and inconvenient creativity and personal style in the process.

We teach business--more on that later--and our kids will have built-in opportunities and our support if they choose creative career choices. Don't worry about my kids! Those kids who go to school so they can get a job can work for my family businesses. They can work for Stephanie, Eric and Cassie.

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We have decided to start this journal to keep track of our children's life lessons learned in our homeschool journey. We believe that as parents we are accountable for our own children's education. It is up to us to make sure we prepare them to be active and responsible citizens, not a drain on society. So this blog will be a place where we can share our daily lessons and activities that we incorporate into our homeschool.

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Mother to 9 children, 5 on earth and 4 in heaven.
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Christian Unschoolers
Unschooling is learning as you live life. All of life involves learning. This is what we "teach" our children.


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