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Where's the line between laziness and radical unschooling? - Page 3

post #41 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post

He plays Starcraft 1 and 2 online, and has played some mature games, but then I limited them again. I do not limit any content that is rated for teens, be it movies or what have you.

Starcraft 1 is the game my ds loves (his computer can't handle 2) that I was referring to regarding the in game chats.  At first, most of the chat went over his head but than he started reading better...
 

 

post #42 of 143

yeah... my DS has very different opinions than my own about what is appropriate for him. He is highly opinionated and believes it's ok for him to play Manhunt and watch Saw movies. We discuss everything under the sun and then some. I am just not comfortable with him looking at violence like that (manhunt is where you go round murdering people).

 

It sounds as if you have barred your DS from watching porn? How do you reconcile this with radical unschooling? Or, is this just the one thing where you believe that your values on this particular subject matter override your DS's own ideas about what he wants to see/learn about/experience.

post #43 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post



Starcraft 1 is the game my ds loves (his computer can't handle 2) that I was referring to regarding the in game chats.  At first, most of the chat went over his head but than he started reading better...
 

 

 

SC2 and SC1 are very twitchy. I am surprised that you have seen lots of communication that doesn't have to do with strategy. I hang out with him and talk to him about the game while he is playing it and haven't yet seen too much communication other than directions from team mates.

 

I worry that he will become interested in a MMRPG where that sort of thing happens lots.
 

 

post #44 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post

yeah... my DS has very different opinions than my own about what is appropriate for him. He is highly opinionated and believes it's ok for him to play Manhunt and watch Saw movies. We discuss everything under the sun and then some. I am just not comfortable with him looking at violence like that (manhunt is where you go round murdering people).

 

It sounds as if you have barred your DS from watching porn? How do you reconcile this with radical unschooling? Or, is this just the one thing where you believe that your values on this particular subject matter override your DS's own ideas about what he wants to see/learn about/experience.

 

Yup.  I don't see radical unschooling as being defined as facilitating a kid to do any blessed thing that occurs to him.  I don't believe there is a person that doesn't have personal limits somewhere.  The problem with things like watching graphic violence and porn is you can't unsee them.  I, personally, can not stomach sitting with my 9 yo and watching internet porn.  And I wouldn't want him exploring something like that on his own.  It is never ending and the content is whatever random people with video cameras can get people to do in front of them.  I don't want him watching people pretending to be raped, defecating on each other, seeing what they can fit into their orifices, etc.  It's not like when I was a kid and someone would find their dad's playboy and share it with friends.


Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post



 

SC2 and SC1 are very twitchy. I am surprised that you have seen lots of communication that doesn't have to do with strategy. I hang out with him and talk to him about the game while he is playing it and haven't yet seen too much communication other than directions from team mates.

 

I worry that he will become interested in a MMRPG where that sort of thing happens lots.
 

 

Sometimes the chat isn't that bad but other times it is over the top...  Ds sometimes has his own ideas of strategy and doesn't want to just take commands which sometimes causes other players to get verbally abusive.  But sometimes they are that way just for the hell of it.

 

ETA:  Actually, it was through the in game chats on SC 1 that ds learned what porn was and that it was something he could watch online simply by cutting and pasting one word.
 

 


Edited by 4evermom - 3/25/11 at 4:07pm
post #45 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post

 

Yup.  I don't see radical unschooling as being defined as facilitating a kid to do any blessed thing that occurs to him. 

 


I agree. My own personal values towards violence are what would prevent such a game from being played in this house, should the issue ever arise. For example, games that show denigration of women or extreme violence, etc. would not fly with me. I would not lecture about how bad it was for them to play it. Instead I would focus on the fact that these are my values and why I feel that way. Since we live in a very small house and the computers are where I can always see and hear what they are doing, that rules out them playing such things because it would be offensive and disturbing to me to be exposed to that. I'm pretty sure they would understand this; they've heard me berate DH about watching violent movies often enough (and since they are also strongly against seeing such movies they are on my side there). 

 

 

post #46 of 143

I planned on staying off this part of MDC after a recent thread I started.  Sometimes I think the definition of unschooling is a matter of schematics.  My idea of unschooling might be another person's idea of child lead learning. I have an US parent for a long time.  I'm about to sound very judgmental.

 

Six years old watching Saw?  Nine years old being verbally abused by adults playing SC 1 and SC 2?   How did unschooling or even radical unschooling become no rules or limits.  Words fail me.

post #47 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakeeffectsnow View Post

I planned on staying off this part of MDC after a recent thread I started.  Sometimes I think the definition of unschooling is a matter of schematics.  My idea of unschooling might be another person's idea of child lead learning. I have an US parent for a long time.  I'm about to sound very judgmental.

 

Six years old watching Saw?  Nine years old being verbally abused by adults playing SC 1 and SC 2?   How did unschooling or even radical unschooling become no rules or limits.  Words fail me.

Likely it is 12-15 yos being verbally abusive, much like they would do on the school bus home.  Better at home, over the internet, with parental guidance on how to handle it.  It's no shame on my son that other people do worse jobs raising theirs.

 

Geekgolightly didn't say her 6 yo watched Saw, just that he wanted to and she wasn't comfortable with it.

 

Not to be judgmental, but try reading posts more carefully.
 

 

post #48 of 143

For those of you with kids interested in MMORPGs, we've found City of Heroes to be quite family friendly and to have easily used controls to adjust things for the user's comfort level.

post #49 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapphire_chan View Post

For those of you with kids interested in MMORPGs, we've found City of Heroes to be quite family friendly and to have easily used controls to adjust things for the user's comfort level.



But $15/month after buying the game...  greensad.gif

post #50 of 143

How about giving consensus a try?

 

As in, "You live in this house and want to play games all day. I live in this house and want games to be played for just a little while. So let's find out how long we can play games and we both like it. How about 2 hours, 1 hour together (games we both like, i.e. mostly Pokemon in our case) and one hour for you? Or both hours for the games we both like, and we play together (*my kids will always chose this option, and my experience is that most kids will*).

 

And then we do something else we both like, such as ride our bikes to whatever place we want to (kid chooses), and then stop for ice-cream or you get to take photos with my camera. But we also have some have-to-do things, like going to get groceries. And then we take turns reading stories to each other, and I'll read the longest story and it can be as scary as you want and then you read a story from the book you know I love a lot."

 

 

post #51 of 143

I agree a lot with 4evermon's quote below:

 

Quote:
Ds is radically unschooled but I share my opinions and values with him.  I never got the memo that that wasn't allowed winky.gif.  I don't go out of the way to introduce him to things that I don't feel are developmentally appropriate.  We deal with them if they come up.  I don't let him break the law.  I remind him to brush his teeth and I encourage him to round out his diet with the occasional fruit or vegetable.  But I treat him and his opinions respectfully.  I don't feel they have less value than mine.  They are sometimes based on less experience but the best way to gain experience is to try things for oneself so I don't get in the way unless I think it's something truly harmful.  

We parent a lot like this. I fall pretty firmly in the center, too radical for the folks who are unschoolers in education only, and not radical enough for the WAY radical unschoolers lol

 

When I see threads like this, I wonder if it has less to do with the amount of time spent doing something and more to do with what the parent or society deems 'worthy'. If your child got into, say, War and Peace and read it for 10 hours a day for however long it took for them to read it, would you be "concerned"? Would there be "fights"? Or, would it be, WOW, my 12 year old is so immersed in War and Peace...she just can't put it down...amazing! Even society would likely praise your child's voracious reading. Similarly, society also praises earning potential, so if your 19-year-old college freshman got a high paying job as a video game developer/tester and essentially "played video games" for 8-10 hours a day, you could brag to all your friends as long as you throw in the 'job' aspect and 75K a year salary (or whatever)...know what I mean?

 

As someone who struggles myself with the time my child spends on things I personally may not find particularly "worthy" of hours of time (whether it be computer games or tv, or whatever) but then simultaneously praise her (or myself and my fab parenting skills lol.gif ) when she spends hours doing something I do deem "worthy" or "educational", even subconsciously (word puzzles or brain teasers or whatever) -- I often wonder if my own perspective needs some adjusting.

 

I think if kids are living in a loving, involved environment where their needs are met, where parents are providing answers to questions, resources for learning, tools to explore various interests, feedback, guidance, and so on... things like hours of video games are less about filling a void or dependence than say if they were in an environment where the parents didn't care or were mentally checked out. If the former describes your family, I don't think there's a whole lot to worry about in the long run for most (but not all, there are always exceptions) kids.

post #52 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post



Likely it is 12-15 yos being verbally abusive, much like they would do on the school bus home.  Better at home, over the internet, with parental guidance on how to handle it.  It's no shame on my son that other people do worse jobs raising theirs.
 

 



Why does it have to be a zero sum game? How 'bout neither option? How about a parent willing to say "this isn't appropriate or necessary for a child under any circumstance and my kids are worthy of better options?

 

post #53 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post





But $15/month after buying the game...  greensad.gif

There is that. I tend to forget that many MMORPGs are free since dh and all our gaming friends play COH, WOW or FF.

 

 

post #54 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakeeffectsnow View Post

I planned on staying off this part of MDC after a recent thread I started.  Sometimes I think the definition of unschooling is a matter of schematics.  My idea of unschooling might be another person's idea of child lead learning. I have an US parent for a long time.  I'm about to sound very judgmental.

 

Six years old watching Saw?  Nine years old being verbally abused by adults playing SC 1 and SC 2?   How did unschooling or even radical unschooling become no rules or limits.  Words fail me.


oh no! I put my foot down and will continue to do so. I got all authoritarian about it, too. Seth goes to regular school, but at home, for the most part, we just facilitate his interests. Khan academy, video games, movies, books... whatever he is interested in we learn about it, too and help him pursue it.

 

But I got sassy and serious about the violence. My husband thinks I am being far too conservative and does not believe that these images are disturbing for children. His father back in the late 70's and early 80's raised DH with almost unlimited freedom. When DH was 7, he went  with his father to see Scarface and DH still talks about that fondly.

 

I won't allow it. FWIW, my DH is a very interesting opinionated and loving human being. But that doesn't convince me to compromise my stance here. 

 

As for SC1 and 2, I haven't seen verbal abuse, but my DS loves to be "the helper" and will do whatever his team mates ask of him as long as it makes strategic sense. Maybe that's why I haven't seen any verbal abuse.

 

post #55 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post





Why does it have to be a zero sum game? How 'bout neither option? How about a parent willing to say "this isn't appropriate or necessary for a child under any circumstance and my kids are worthy of better options?

 



What you're proposing seems to be a zero sum game, IMHO. My DS absolutely adores playing SC2. It thrills him, he learns a lot about strategy and talks to me about things he does and sounds so proud of himself when he wins. I am proud of him and if the verbal abuse comes up, I agree with a PP that it's good that I'm right here to help him sort through it.

post #56 of 143



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post





What you're proposing seems to be a zero sum game, IMHO. My DS absolutely adores playing SC2. It thrills him, he learns a lot about strategy and talks to me about things he does and sounds so proud of himself when he wins. I am proud of him and if the verbal abuse comes up, I agree with a PP that it's good that I'm right here to help him sort through it.



I think it's wonderful that a parent can help a child navigate through issues as they crop up naturally. I just disagree with the premise that the only two choices are for kids to be abused online or abused on the school bus.  There are other choices, other games, other activities where we are not putting our kids into situations that are inappropriate and expecting that just guiding them through it is good enough.  But I don'tRU/ unschool and my kids have limits and filters on media (and junkfood and unhealthy relationships).   For our family, while the kids are well grounded in the real world, I just don't see the benefit to deliberately  exposing young kids to adult content, online abuse or gratuitious violence as sport or entertainment.

 

This is getting way off topic and I am wondering if there is anything in this thread that the OP found interesting or useful before we veered into discussing the appropriateness of violence in video games.

 

post #57 of 143

 4evermom and geekgolightly, sorry if I misinterpreted the posts.  Sometimes, I misunderstand things online that would be clear in person.

 

 We are struggling with changing our parenting style.  We've always had certain rules that are nonnegotiable about certain things (safety, respecting other, and violence), we've tried to use CL.  Recently, my 12 year old daughter (my easy going, responsible US dream child) told us in  no uncertain terms the way we are raising her isn't working for her.  She's requested we give her a bed time, rules about screen time, limits to her personal freedom, and lots of structure with her school work.  In her own words, "You're lack of rules make me feel like you don't give a cr@p about me."  

 

Now, my other unschooled child is telling me the same thing, in a gentler way.  My other two sons, who have been home schooled with lots of structure because of their personalities and learning disabilities, are thriving.  I've come to realize over the last few weeks that my two kids who are home schooled have much ore structure in all aspects of their lives.

 

My whole vision of my life has shaken to the foundation.  I've always seen myself as good, flexible easy going mother who is in touch with what her kids need and I can rise to the occasion.  Now, my daughter is telling, while we are in the therapist office (who she saw for anxiety), I'm not that person.  My own daughter thinks we don't care about her because of a philosophy from a book I read when I was only 15 years old.  

post #58 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post



 



I think it's wonderful that a parent can help a child navigate through issues as they crop up naturally. I just disagree with the premise that the only two choices are for kids to be abused online or abused on the school bus.  There are other choices, other games, other activities where we are not putting our kids into situations that are inappropriate and expecting that just guiding them through it is good enough.  But I don'tRU/ unschool and my kids have limits and filters on media (and junkfood and unhealthy relationships).   For our family, while the kids are well grounded in the real world, I just don't see the benefit to deliberately  exposing young kids to adult content, online abuse or gratuitious violence as sport or entertainment.

 

This is getting way off topic and I am wondering if there is anything in this thread that the OP found interesting or useful before we veered into discussing the appropriateness of violence in video games.

 

Well, it's a nice addition to the weekly "how much time do you let your dc play video games" question, imo. lol.gif

 

Cyberbullying is a huge problem with today's youth.  It's good for my ds to learn the internet is full of crazy people;-)  This is "cropping up naturally" for ds.  The game isn't rated adult and no one here is saying they are letting their young kids watch R rated movies.  Funny how so many attacks are made against unschoolers for not preparing their children for the real world, lol.  The internet is the real world, now, and navigating it safely is an important skill.  Not internalizing what strangers say to you over the internet is important and my particular ds is mature enough to handle that at his age with a little parental support.  Now, he has a friend who is also 9 who would be crushed if someone said something mean to him (which happened on Club Penguin).  I gave his mom the low down on SC1 and suggested her son might not like it despite my son talking it up to him (and I told my son that I didn't think his friend would enjoy it as much as he does to minimize him talking it up).  His friend doesn't find the more strategic games appealing, anyway.  My son loves them.     

 

I was pleased to notice one time when someone was insulting him, he did something I do to him when he is cranky and being sassy to me.  He just typed "ty" (thank you).  The other kid lol-ed and the situation was diffused.  Some people write things just to provoke someone and get a riled up response.  You turn the tables on them and annoy them instead by not taking the bait.  This happens all the time on MDC and other sites.  
 

 

post #59 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakeeffectsnow View Post

 4evermom and geekgolightly, sorry if I misinterpreted the posts.  Sometimes, I misunderstand things online that would be clear in person.



hug.gif  No problem.  Everybody's just trying to do what's best fr their kids.  It's just that they are so dang different!

post #60 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lakeeffectsnow View Post

She's requested we give her a bed time, rules about screen time, limits to her personal freedom, and lots of structure with her school work.  In her own words, "You're lack of rules make me feel like you don't give a cr@p about me."

Now, my other unschooled child is telling me the same thing, in a gentler way.

I think it's important to listen to our kids when they tell us what they want... and at the same time I think that doesn't necessarily mean we have to parent them in exactly the way they ask us to. If it was the other way around - if a parent who had lots of rules and a more controlling style had a kid say, "Hey, mom, I think we need to do away with these rules because I feel like you don't trust me to do anything right on my own" I don't think the parent would do away with rules entirely... but a good parent would look at what the kid was asking for and examine her parenting style and maybe change some things.

I had a hard time sometimes negotiating this with my kid... who would one day tell me she wished I made her do stuff on the next got upset because I "nagged" too much. Which, to me, was a lot like telling her to do stuff, or at least strongly suggesting that she do stuff and reminding her of why she had said she wanted to do said stuff. Not coincidentally, I think, a lot more of this happened during the preteen and early teen years, which is a time when kids are struggling with a lot of physiological and cognitive changes. I think a lot of "I want you to tell me what to do" was about "I can see what adult responsibilities are coming my way and I'm scared of them." I do have a kid who had always responded poorly to being told what to do, though... she was a melt-down-y kid for years and when she threw a fit it lasted for an hour or more, so I really didn't want to set her off... but I was willing to be with her, talk with her, check in with her, to remind her, create visual reminders for her, buy her a planner (she loves planners), and make it clear that I cared a lot about what she was doing, because I did and do.

The outcome is that she does what needs doing (currently that means playing rugby in Memphis in the rain, I believe. Better than playing in the snow in Kansas City earlier this month). She has a strong sense of personal responsibility for her life and at 18 she doesn't need someone to make her do things. I'm sure she'll do fine off at college, wherever she decided to go (choices, choices!).

I imagine she's seen porn, too, fwiw. I didn't ever forbid her from seeing it, but at 9 she didn't have any desire to, and so I did tell her what to click on and not to click on to make sure she didn't see it accidentally. That was easier in 2002 that today, maybe...
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