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Homeschool Fiction

Follow homeschoolers Nadia and Aidan as they travel the USA! Each book in this series explores a new state and a new research topic. Along with their parents and pet turtle, they find adventure and learning everywhere.

...and just what is that mysterious device of theirs?

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October 2008
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Topics: homeschooling,Unschooling,words

No. My kids really don’t “do school” — ever.

An adult recently asked my younger daughter what she’d been learning lately. She stared at the adult and was silent.

Duh, what hadn’t she been learning lately? I thought to myself, not in sarcasm either since I knew the adult had my daughter’s best interest in mind, she is just naive about how learning actually occurs.

The adult in question was looking for coursework proof that my daughter was a child who was learning.  She knew of no other way to quantify a child’s education.

As my daughter and this woman stared (nicely – we like this lady!) at each other, I briefly mentioned to the woman that the previous night (on a whim) Teagan learned how multiplication tables work up to 9 x 9. She’s also discovered the tricks involved in these numbers.  The woman was satisfied since she understood this, and we were honest.  The vital parts I didn’t tell: the whole thing was my daughter’s idea and none of it was forced.  My husband and I just answer our kids’ questions when they ask them and we have conversations together all the time.  That is all learning requires – interest and investigation.

My kids don’t “do school”. They don’t have a curriculum and they most certainly don’t sit down at the kitchen table for hours each morning before they are allowed to have fun.  This is the aspect of unschooling that non-unschooling parents can’t seem to wrap their minds around.  It sounds chaotic and haphazard.  On the surface, it is.  But, Unschoolers don’t live a surface life.  We live deep and thoughtful existences where we examine everything and stay connected to our souls.  We see the connectivity of things that others do not.  We don’t see artificial subject barriers.  We know that when we are stuck on a problem, if we go and do something else seemingly opposite, we’ll come up with solutions to the first issue.  We learn math concepts from nature and science from music.

We never “do school” because school is never necessary nor worthwhile.