List Of Students On Tumblr.
I want to commend the tumblr editors. Since I mentioned the lack of students in the #education tag- there has been an incredible upsweep of student involvement.
GWLAP and PPT have done an excellent job building this tag. Adventures In Learning, more than any other editor, understands the need for student voices. His movement, imagining learning, is exactly what I advocated. It’s so good too know that there are people out there who are taking real world steps to amend this fault.
If you’re not on this list: either re-blog or message me and I’ll edit you in. I may publish this list on my education blog just to make connections easier. If you would like your blog to be on this list- message me.
Eclectic Blogs That Publish Content From High Schoolers
1. How To Drop Out Of School: All content is written by high school students.
2. EdZedOmega: Very cool project.
High School Unschoolers/Homeschoolers Who Write About Education
8. http://reborn-pure.tumblr.com/ (FOLLOW HER)
12. http://swallowtailskies.tumblr.com/ (FOLLOW HER!)
A quick note to editors and students: More students contribute under the #homeschooling and #unschooling tag. Unschool students- tag your posts with #education.
Other Teens Who Write About Education
Students need to write more about education. Teachers need to direct more posts to students. The tag should be a place not only for teachers to connect with teachers, but for students to connect with students. And, of course, for teachers and students to talk about fixing education.
could you explain what unschooling your children is?
Unschooling is a form of homeschooling in which the children completely direct their learning, based on their current interests. Instead of sitting your child down and attempting to make them study math, history, or grammar, you simply allow them to pursue their passions. There are no tests, grades, textbooks, or homework - unless, of course, the child asks for them. (I was the kind of kid that would have!)
Radical or whole life unschooling takes the principles of unschooling and applies them to everyday life. It involves trusting your children to set their own schedules - with no rules regarding sleep, food, electronics, bathing, etc.
Unschoolers know that children, like adults, will learn what they have a need to learn or what they are interested in. Let’s say you, as an adult, wanted to get a higher-paying job that you loved, but first you needed to learn geometry (random example here). Logically, you would probably go and learn geometry - either by enrolling yourself in a class, or by teaching yourself, or finding someone to tutor you. Or let’s say you decide you want to learn how to knit. You can buy the materials, read books, watch Youtube videos that teach you how, or ask someone you know to teach you. Children can learn like that too, if we allow them to.
Children are driven to learn all on their own. They are naturally curious. We don’t have to teach a baby how to roll over, crawl, walk, or even talk. They learn these things because they need to and they want to, and they learn them best if we simply observe (which is evidenced by the fact that babies placed in walkers or other devices to ‘help’ them learn to walk, actually learn to walk at a slower rate).
The same can be true for reading, writing, math, and all of the other things we divide into ‘subjects’ at school. Your child will, at some point, want to be able to read in order to use the internet or read a book. They will eventually take an interest in buying things, and need to learn to use money, count, add, subtract, divide, etc. That’s what unschooling is all about - learning from the real world, without diminishing a child’s natural drive to learn.
Principles of Unschooling
By Pam Sorooshian
Learning happens all the time. The brain never stops working and it is not possible to divide time up into “learning periods” versus “non-learning periods.” Everything that goes on around a person, everything they hear, see, touch, smell, and taste, results in learning of some kind.
Learning does not require coercion. In fact, learning cannot really be forced against someone’s will. Coercion feels bad and creates resistance.
Learning feels good. It is satisfying and intrinsically rewarding. Irrelevant rewards can have unintended side effects that do not support learning.
Learning stops when a person is confused. All learning must build on what is already known.
Learning becomes difficult when a person is convinced that learning is difficult. Unfortunately, most teaching methods assume learning is difficult and that lesson is the one that is really “taught” to the students.
Learning must be meaningful. When a person doesn’t see the point, when they don’t know how the information relates or is useful in “the real world,” then the learning is superficial and temporary - not “real” learning.
Learning is often incidental. This means that we learn while engaged in activities that we enjoy for their own sakes and the learning happens as a sort of “side benefit.”
Learning is often a social activity, not something that happens in isolation from others. We learn from other people who have the skills and knowledge we’re interested in and who let us learn from them in a variety of ways.
We don’t have to be tested to find out what we’ve learned. The learning will be demonstrated as we use new skills and talk knowledgeably about a topic,
Feelings and intellect are not in opposition and not even separate things. All learning involves the emotions, as well as the intellect.
Learning requires a sense of safety. Fear blocks learning. Shame and embarrassment, stress and anxiety—these block learning.
Felt the need to write some notes about intentional doing after reading Kathreen’s post. Intentional doing: thinking about how we do things and why we do them is always present in our lives, if not the minute we act, surely in our reflections. Our kids don’t do school so we have the time to enjoy the process in everything we do. We find a way to get what we need without just being handed to us. Learning without schools requires motivation and there’s plenty of it, so are the resources. We don’t go around seeking knowledge as a goal, but as we engage in any activity like baking, reading, creating, etc. we reach for the tools required for the task.
Of course, there are times when there’s no time or patience to accomplish something, so we opt for the fast route, a shortcut (a staple instead of glue, canned beans instead of slowly cooked dry ones, etc.). Sometimes the world goes fast and won’t wait for you to hop on. So we hope on running, do what needs to be done, and hop off. Knowing how that feels, and needing a break from it, takes us back to finding new ways of intentional doing.
I told some friends last weekend when we were baking several loaves of bread throughout the day for an unconference, that given some quiet time, my favorite moment is when you first take the bread out of the oven and listen to it, cooling, making crackling noises. Of course the smell is amazing and the warmth makes you rub your hands together. All your senses are wrapped in this simple food item.
Slowly but surely. We’ve thought of designs to make ourselves t-shirts that say “slow-learners” or something of the sort but know that the gesture might be misinterpreted. We are not the kind of people that wears a logo to make a statement: “yes, we do take our time to learn something, how about you?”. See our work, read our words, or eat our meals. Take the time to know us and you’ll get us.
We gather all sorts of ingredients and take the time to learn how to make dishes that we’ve eaten or seen somewhere else: a salad with interesting ingredients from Kcet, a cuban sandwich from a blog, fresh oven bread from a article in a magazine. If it works for us we add it to our meals and we treat our friends to them as well. We haven’t been able to grow an edible garden but it is in our to-do list.
So we look back and evaluate our work. Sure we like to see results, a product sometimes, but always looking at how we get there. Sometimes it’s fun, sometimes we fail, it’s disappointing, rewarding, or none of the above. If you look closely, you’ll notice that your to-do list should include items that take you from one to the other. In order to accomplish one task, there are materials to be gathered, research to be done, mundane tasks to get out of the way, etc. It’s not about quantity but quality, we try and remind ourselves. Time flies when you are reading a good book, just one book. You might have a long list of books to read, but instead of worrying about getting to them, just enjoy the one you have in your hand right now. Sometimes there is time to take a snapshot of what you are doing but often it’s just a memory, a smell, a full tummy. Something in the process of reading, writing, doing will stick with you.
Change is an ongoing theme in our lives as well. We have to be willing to change and adjust. Things that worked one way in the past, don’t necessarily work or are needed in the present. I like to see a paper calendar on my wall for quick reference but my Google calendar is much more efficient. Working with a group of people who aren’t willing to try something different requires changes on your part, or for you to move away from them. Although change is part of life, we get stuck in what is comfortable, known. Intentional doing things, we’ve discovered that challenges can be exciting and there’s always something to learn from in trying. No, we don’t have everything figured out yet, and that’s the beauty of it. Let’s see what else is there to do, play with, try, experiment with, talk about, learn, see, read, share.
Educational Philosophies: Classical Education
Unlike Charlotte Mason education, classical education is a philosophy without a founder. Classical education takes inspiration from Greek and Roman civilization, encouraging the study of rhetoric, logic, Greek, Latin, and “great books”. It’s a highly formalized and rigorous form of education mostly found in in homeschools and Catholic universities. Although a classical education probably appeals more to hardcore autodidacts than unschoolers, anyone can take inspiration from the philosophy. Here are a few suggestions for getting started.
-Study ancient languages. Although we may not speak ancient Greek or Latin, we still use the languages every day. Anyone interested in history, sciences, or religion should consider spend a few hours a week with a Latin or Greek grammar text. (Linguina Latina worked best for me.)
-Study rhetoric and logic. Rhetoric (clear and persuasive reasoning) and logic are both understudied subjects. The two arts can help you learn to write, think, and argue more clearly. For a fun introduction, find The Fallacy Detective or The Thinking Toolbox. Memoria Press, a classical publisher, carries texts for both subjects.
-Read the Great Books. “The Great Books” are the writings that Western Civilization is based on. It’s impossible to pin down a definitive list of these greats, but most compilations include The Iliad, The Odyssey, selections from the Old Testament and Qur’an, works by Plato, Aristotle, and Ovid, and more recent texts by Geoffery Chaucer, Dante, James Joyce, and Mark Twain. Critics often claim that classical education focuses on “dead white males”, but with a self-styled education you have full flexibility with your selections!
For more information about a classical education, read The Well-Trained Mind or The Well-Educated Mind, both by Susan Wise Bauer.