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What Is Unschooling?

What Is Unschooling?

Kelly Lovejoy posted this on an unschooling e-mail list a while back. She was answering someone’s question, which was;

“Exactly what is unschooling? I thought it was another name for homeschooling”.

All poodles are dogs, but not all dogs are poodles.
All unschooling is homeschooling, but all homeschooling isn’t unschooling.
Unschooling is legally a type of homeschooling.
Unschoolers don’t “school-at-home” nor do we gives tests or grades.
Unschooling accepts all learning as valid. Everything is connected. You never know when one thing will lead to or connect with another! Unschoolers know they *do* and will keep searching for those connections.
Unschooling is natural learning. Humans are hard-wired to learn-we crave it and seek it out. When you believe that, you’re half-way to understanding how it works.
Unschooling is understanding the difference between teaching and learning. That’s a HUGE hurdle to overcome before you can “get” unschooling. (I can *teach* you everything *I* know about unschooling, but unless you’re willing to *learn* it, I’m wasting my time and your time.)
All children can unschool.
Many parents can’t.
Unschooling requires a “paradigm shift” to make it work. And it works best when you (the parent) are an active learner. And curious and thoughtful and enthusiastic and interested and interesting.
It’s about trust and respect and patience.
It helps if you can step OUT of the box. If you’re OK going against the flow and standing up for yourself (or at least your child).


**originally posted in 2006**  Smile

© 2011 An Unschooling Life

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5 Responses to “What Is Unschooling?”

  1. I have never heard of “unschooling” but I like it! I’m a huge fan of John Taylor Gatto – a classic “unschooler” who really captures the problem with government compulsory schools. I’ve never liked schools, even when I went to them as a youth, and have always considered them counter to a real education. Thank God for my library card! I think the “unschooling” philosophy is important so people understand that the school system wasn’t designed to educate. If one truly cares about their children’s education, then the concept of “unschooling” is important to understand. The last thing one needs to do when homeschooling their children would be to attempt to replicate the failure of compulsory government schooling. People ask me all the time where do we find the time to educate our children. The simply truth is, our children educate themselves. We merely facilitate their natural desire to learn by providing material and life experiences.

  2. Now i am clarified about unschooling. I thought
    before that they’re just the same with homeschooling.

  3. Sherry says:

    Thanks for sharing this–a very nice summary.
    .-= Sherry´s last blog ..No Running? Seriously? =-.

  4. Joanne says:

    Your welcome! I hope it helps others to understand unschooling better. Smile

  5. Cher says:

    Thanks for posting this, Joanne!! I copied it and put it on my blog as well to share the wisdom of Kelly for those that might not understand unschooling!!

    http://livingadventures.blogspot.com/2006/11/what-is-unschooling.html

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