In 2005 I created An Unschooling Life, a blog detailing our unschooling experience after adopting our three children. Over time, An Unschooling Life became a hub for unschooling support and advice. The blog has been featured in print and digital media and was home to the popular Unschooling Carnival. I’m in the process of updating and moving all the posts to this blog where they will be housed under the An Unschooling Life section. This post was originally published on January 21, 2006. In 2020, I began unschooling my two younger children, so you’ll also see updated posts under this topic.
My seven-year-old daughter Jacqueline is self-taught on the topic of space and the universe.
She’s interested in learning about the universe, because she’s interested in the universe, and that interest has taken her in many real world learning directions.
I’ve been re-reading Guerrilla Learning by Grace Llewellyn and I wanted to share this;
“Real learning requires meaning. Meaningless information can be memorized and repeated, but it’s not learning. For information to have meaning, there must be meaningful context for the information. That’s why most people unless they are really good at absorbing and retaining meaningless data, forget most of what they learned in school.
In school, subjects are artificially separated from each other. It’s as if schools believe that if you give kids one tree at a time, year after year, they will save them up and make a forest out of them. School can sap kids’ interest in learning, confuse them with so many meaningless “trees” that it may take years to recover and begin to see the “forest” again.
School can simply eat up so much of their time that there’s none left for real learning, spontaneous exploration, or free play. Instead of discovering their unique gifts and talents, many learn to see themselves as “disabled” if they don’t keep up with the traditional school systems standards of measurement.”
If you’re interested in purchasing this inspiring book and want to dig deeper into real life learning, here is my Amazon affiliate link.
Guerrilla Learning by Grace Llewellyn.
I love the tree analogy. The school system did that to my older two and it would have done that to Jacqueline, had I not taken her out.
When I see my kids learning, really learning, it makes the artificialness of school much more obvious to me.