I Was Unschooled and I Didn’t Know It

The weird thing about unschooling is that the name is kind of terribly misrepresentative–unschooling isn’t about school at all. It’s about believing that learning happens naturally, all the time, and that if natural learning is fostered, then it continues unrepressed forever. So “unschooling” isn’t just a thing that children do in lieu of school. It’s […]

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Unschooling with Public School

I have been wrestling the past few days with a philosophical paradox. It started when E complained to me about a couple schooled cohorts of hers who like to quiz her on some of the dubiously useful trivia they picked up in school. She didn’t have the answer, and she doesn’t have trivia of her […]

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Lemonade

Let’s get schooly for a moment. Not that I think spending your life comparing yourself to others is a great plan, but when you’re living alternatively, occasionally getting schooly has its benefits. It can help to validate one’s own choices, and help others to understand said choices, by speaking their language. I come in peace. […]

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The Lesson by the Lake

When we moved here to Brooks, one thing I was excited about was the location of our rental. It overlooked the biggest of the town’s manmade lakes; very picturesque, and it has a well maintained paved path going all around. It’s about 2.5 km, with a nice play structure 1/3 of the way around. In the […]

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Hypocrisy and All of It

Here’s a thing about unschoolers: we are an incredibly amorphous group. You can’t even fairly call us a group–we have no leader, no rule book; we’re all over the map. All we have are ideas. Sure, those ideas started with one man, who put them into some great books, but there’s still about a million ways to […]

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Everything is Going to be Alright

In all of my love for the unschooling philosophy and lifestyle, I will admit that I have harboured one main anxiety: math. If I’m being honest, it stems from the classic problem of parents wanting to share all their greatest passions with their children—the same root, I’m sure, as my need for my children to know […]

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Interest-Based Learning

Sometimes unschoolers will describe what they do as “interest-based learning”. It’s a quick, easy to understand phrase that satisfies the casually curious without triggering shock and confusion. It’s not the totality of what makes unschooling…well, unschooling, but it’s accurate that interest-based learning is a key component to the philosophy. I have learned, though, that while […]

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Distilled Priorities

So the thing, for me, about unschooling, is that it doesn’t mean applying the same applicator brush to every child. I thought for a while that it did, and maybe I’ll change my mind again on that down the line. But in my current experience, unschooling offers the opportunity to really distill priorities into what […]

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