Hackschooling Makes Me Happy

This 13 year old gives one of the best TED talks I’ve ever watched!

"And then the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom." - Anaïs Nin

After researching it, talking about it, mulling on it, dreaming about it and planning for it since Joey was born over 7 years ago, it’s finally the right time to take the full plunge into hackschooling our kids. 2015 is going to be a big, busy, totally awesome year.

Here’s to following dreams and living big.


Hackschooling mi rende felice Logan LaPlante al TEDxUniversityofNevada

We Have a Match!

We Have a Match!

I’m not sure how many have heard of an awesome program called IRun4, but if you haven’t go check it out! It started with a man, who was a runner, meeting a special guy who couldn’t run, and beginning to dedicate his races to him. It grew from there, and now includes all disabilities. The athletes cheer on their buddies in their accomplishments and the buddies are their “coaches!” I heard of the…

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A 13 year old talks about traditional education system and what he wants to be when he’s an adult.

hackschooling: creativity, education, happiness, and health in today's hectic society

education reform always seems to have a spot in national dialogue. however, it never seems to move past that - we talk about the need for a change in our education system, but never make those changes. i get the sense that we are afraid to change for some reason, like we fear changing the way we approach education might set us behind somehow. by a lot of metrics we’re already falling behind, though, so that type of logic is a little bit unsound.

i don’t think our current system is 100% defunct, but it could definitely use improvement. one major area ripe for a makeover is the way we approach creativity and the arts. a lot of times we verbally support them, but then schools focus on standardized forms of thinking, and arts are the first to go in budget cuts.

i could go on, but i’d rather let these two videos speak for me. this first video is of a kid named Logan who spke at TEDx in Nevada. Logan Laplante is a thirteen year old boy who was taken out of the traditional school system when he was nine. he’s easily one of the most articulate just-turned-teenagers i’ve ever come across, and he sounds like he’s got a much better perspective on life than most adults. when he grows up, he’s no sure what he want’s to do, but he knows he wants to be happy and healthy. you go, Logan.

can i be hackschooled?

this second video is the most-watched video in TEDtalk history. it’s called “Do Schools Kill Creativity?” and it’s given by the humorous and astute Sir Kevin Robinson. he makes some brilliant points about how we grow kids out of creativity, rather than developing it.

you can find a nice summary of the relationship between the two videos here.

what are your thoughts on the importance of creativity, living a healthy and happy life, education, and the way these fit into our modern society?


- When I grow up… I wanna be happy.

I skolan lärs ut så mycket saker som inte behövs för ett fullgott liv. Just det faktum att lära känna sig själv, bli trygg i sig själv och tillsammans med andra, är något som knappt finns på schemat.

Helt befängt egentligen.

Och så mycket handlar om betyg. Om noteringar på pappersark som tas på större allvar än personen i sig självt. Och tänker man bortom svaret som någon märklig kursplan har utformat, så får man fel.

Nej, håll dig inom ramarna, gör allt du kan för att vara ett gott läshuvud. För utan betyg från skolan är du inte mycket värd. 

Åren i skolan lägger en grund för hela livet. Varför inte lära sig om saker man vill? 

Once you’re motivated to learn something you can get a lot done in a short amount of time, and on your own. Logan LaPlante

Plugga. Skaffa ett jobb. Gift dig. Det är en himla karusell som bygger på att vi redan är lyckliga. 

Totalt sjukt.

För vi försöker leva i en ram som bygger på betyg, ett snyggt hem, vältränade kroppar. Det vore inte så fel, om det inte vore för att de flesta gör det för andras skull, inte sin egen. Vilket det självklart ska vara.

När jag blir stor vill jag vara lycklig. Och fortsätta vara det.

Ja, visst är det så.

Att bli den bästa jag kan bli

Få det bästa jag kan få

Vara ödmjuk och tacksam

Leva mitt liv, så långt jag kan, på mina egna villkor

Hålla hälsan vid liv

Och kompromissa lagom med de människor jag delar livet med…

Där har jag något att jobba för.


Hack Schooling

Today it seems that education is a hot topic.  As our schools seem to fall behind, people are looking for alternatives.  One alternative that seems to be popular is Hack Schooling.  A book that seems to almost give a curriculum to hack schooling (and I use that word lightly) is Hacking Your Education by Dale J. Stephens.  I am currently in the middle of this book and I have enjoyed so far.  This book supports using the community to learn and to find your own path. Instead of listening to lectures all day and having a rigid schedule, students learn what they want when they want to.  Here are some points that I have found to be interesting…

  • Establish goals that are around what you love
  • Establish a to learn list
  • Find books, lectures, and other tools on a subject you would like to know
  •  Create a buddy accountability system in which you exchange goals and accomplishments
  •  Create a peer learning group
  • Learn from your peers
  • Try to attend conferences, talks, or lectures
  •  Establish a CV, a blog, and a personal website to show off your skills for potential employers

This system seems to work for many, as many have succeeded using it, as noted in the book.  Even if you go to school full time or have a degree, this system could be helpful in upgrading your life.  It could also be a fun pastime.

What I encourage you today is to do some research on hack schooling and see what you find and like.  I am by no means trying to sell this book (in fact I borrowed the one I have from the library).  There are resources outside this book too, such as  TED talks and several blogs.  I have been inspired by this idea and maybe you will be too.

The Gift of Writing (To My Daughter)

The Gift of Writing (To My Daughter)

One thing that I’m generously encouraging for my oldest as we continue to explore new activities for hackschool is writing consistently, if not daily.

The value of this precious activity can’t be overstated as it’s increasing her ability to communicate in every possible facet of her life. And, just like me, it’s forcing her to slow downand contemplate important ideas and experiences that she’s…

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From Child Labor to Child Work: Redefining the Economic World of Children by Viviana Zelizer

One of the arguments for child actors was that theater was their school and their education because the costumes and storylines taught them history. After watching the Tedtalk from Logan on “hackschooling” I can accept that because building the sets would teach a set of skills that children don’t get in our education system. It also argued that theater wasn’t work because the kids saw it as playing and in my opinion playing is a crucial part of childhood.


Hackschooling makes me happy | Logan LaPlante | TEDxUniversityofNevada

Hackschooling makes me happy | Logan LaPlante | TEDxUniversityofNevada