Unschooling is a range of educational philosophies and practices centered on allowing children to learn through their natural life experiences, including play, game play, household responsibilities, work experience, and social interaction, rather than through a more traditional school curriculum. There are some who find it controversial. Unschooling encourages exploration of activities, often initiated by the children themselves, facilitated by the adults. Unschooling differs from conventional schooling principally in the thesis that standard curricula and conventional grading methods, as well as other features of traditional schooling, are counterproductive to the goal of maximizing the education of each child
I have never claimed to be an "unschooler" although I do subscribe to some of the philosophies of learning through every day experiences. I, however, have not been able to let go of the more traditional approach. Now, we are far from the textbooks and grades type of traditional but we are also far from the true idea of unschooling. I guess we are quite an eclectic mix of many styles of education and I find it's different with each child.
Anyway, with all that said, we have taken much more of an "unschooled" approach the last week and if this is how it works, well, I think I like it. Just a few highlights...
We explored mushrooms in the front yard.
Planted some junipers to help stop erosion. Daddy talked to the boys about photosynthesis too.
Played a great new game, "Wits and Wagers" (review coming in a few weeks)
It was great for so many things, but the most obvious was number writing.
Molly and Zach made books and practiced handwriting, spelling and language/grammar, and this was all their own idea!
We took a field trip and learned about all kinds of things relating to farming.
Zachary made LOTS of robots
And turned himself in to one.
We did some container gardening and are attempting to grow some fall veggies (I do NOT have a green thumb, so we shall see). More learning about photosynthesis and just where our food comes from.
Both boys picked up countless books and read and learned about all kinds of things. Zach begged me to let him read a chapter book so we found one he can handle, "Fantastic Mr. Fox" by Roald Dahl (we love his books). He also found a "knock-knock" book that he won't put down and he has us all cracking up!
And we even got some baking in.
So, we covered quite a bit over the last week, and nothing was "planned" by Mommy. So, next week we will go back to our workboxes, but I am even more intrigued by "unschooling" and I may start adding in a "planned" week of "no plans" and try our hand at a little more unschooling.
Do any of you "unschool" your kiddos? What does it look like in your home? I would love to hear about it!
- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad