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Unschooling, John Holt etc.

(5 Posts)
dizietsma Mon 01-Oct-07 15:34:35

At the insistence of a friend of mine, I read "The Teenage Liberation Handbook" and was completely sold on the concept of Unschooling.

I have always had my issues with mainstream educational techniques, due to my own experiences at school, and DH is even more passionately anti-mainstream education than me so we're almost certainly going to give it a go.

I was wondering if anyone else had unschooled their kids from an early age (DD is 2) and what their experiences are? I'm also interested to hear what people think about Unschooling.

Julienoshoes Mon 01-Oct-07 15:53:01

I've found that unschoolers in the UK tend to call ourselves 'autonomous home educators'.
We are totally autonomous home educators, we have completely followed the children's interests and educated them through living.
And our lives have been very full and very varied.
However we didn't always do this. Our children went to school and were 13, 11 and 8 before we found about home education at all and deregistered them. All three have been diagnosed as having dyslexia and related problems to different degrees. The youngest child's dyslexia was especially severe.
Now several years later, the autonomous route has really paid off. They are confident, articulate, well educated young people. I am very proud of them and we have a very happy household and a great relationship.
Last weekend we had 18th birthday celebrations for our middle child and had approx 25 home educated youngsters here for most of the weekend-almost all of them autonomously home educated. many of them had never been to school and had always been educated informally.
They are a lovely bunch of people who are all at college/uni/in employment that they are enjoying.

There is a support group for autonomous home educators in the UK

I agree with you I found "the Teenage Liberation Handbook" by Grace Llewellyn, a revelation and it helped shape our educational style. I do also like and loved this description of autonomous learning on the EO website but the greatest help and source of advice was other autonomous home educators-and their children, that we met locally and at HE camps and gatherings.

dizietsma Mon 01-Oct-07 16:03:05

Thanks Julie, I have bookmarked those sites and am waiting for approval to the yahoo group.

In many ways I think unschooling will be easier with a younger child who has never been to school because she wont have to unlearn bad habits, but I'm pretty intimidated about helping her learn to read and basic maths. I just want to make sure we don't screw it up! I'm sure that's a pretty common concern, but I was hoping someone could reassure me with their experiences.

SueBaroo Mon 01-Oct-07 16:08:28

We're fairly child-led with what we do, but tbh, we're not unschoolers because we do actively follow a basic reading and maths plan.

Julienoshoes Mon 01-Oct-07 16:38:56

Oh I'm glad you are joining the list-I will see you there very soon then grin
Others there, with experience will be able to talk to you about the autonomous route from a young age -but I do like the weblog where Gill talks about educating autonomously. The author still has quite a young child-as well as two or three older ones.

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