or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Unschooling › Where's the line between laziness and radical unschooling?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Where's the line between laziness and radical unschooling? - Page 4

post #61 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post


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...


I think that the safe-search settings are actually a bit better today. Or maybe it's just that I pretty much only use Google now and it was Yahoo that used to give obvious porn links for innocent searches. (Like 'hedgehog'. Seriously.)

 

post #62 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post



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.  
 

 


Sorry I thought we were talking specifically about the 6 year old whose father did want to let him watch Saw and whose mother doesn't limit any movies rated for teens, and who participated in the community aspct of SC where he had encountered cyberbullying.


 

 

post #63 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by annakiss View Post

If my children want to play video games all day, when do I cross the line of fostering dependencies? When does it cease to be allowing for autonomy and actively encouraging addiction? It sounds like everyone wants to stake a claim on one side or the other, but is there some middle ground? Because after awhile, I want us to do something else. I want to see others discoveries happening. And it's always a freaking fight. And that sucks. I don't want to fight.

 

I think there is middle ground, but only if you're willing to be coercive to some degree.  For me, I just can't find the place inside where I'm able to do that, so I know what works for me.  I do see others, though, that appear to be comfortable where they are--they're able to insist or enforce or coerce.  Their kids don't appear to be terribly unhappy.  I think it's important for each parent to find her "zone of functionality," so to speak.  My zone is way over there at the rad end, but I've also made an agreement with myself to stick what feels true in my bones rather than forcing myself to adhere to a lifeless ideology as expressed by someone else.

 

You might like some of these stories.  They're mainly about TV, but they also apply to video games:

http://unschooledliving.blogspot.com/2011/03/tube-watching.html

 

 

Quote:
When is it that I've not just given them autonomy but actually given up any authority? I don't mean authority over them. I mean authority of someone who has been in this world and knows a little bit about it.

 

You have the authority to decide what feels right to you, regardless of what the proponents of any ideology say.

 

 

Quote:
When have I given up their acceptance of me as decently wise and given into their acceptance of themselves as autonomous to the point of not needing to listen and not needing to participate?

 

From my perspective, it's wise to trust kids.  I'd like it if they don't have to think I'm wise, if that makes any sense.  I'd like it if *I* don't have to think I'm wise.  The truth in my life is that my kids don't need to listen to me, but trial and error and in-the-moment inspiration makes our communication successful much (and never all) of the time.

 

They don't need to participate, but when I'm lined up and happy and flowing, they often do.  That's been my biggest lesson--to take care of myself so I'm in a good place.

 


Quote:
I need to know how to measure it. I don't want to just accept that it will work itself out either by giving complete free reign or by becoming authoritarian.

 

The only answer I have is to consult your bones and your gut on a moment-to-moment basis, to walk free of any particular definition even if it appears you embody one completely or partially.

 

 

Quote:
How can I be authoritative without being authoritarian? I mean honestly, this is a huge problem in my life.

 

The moments when I'm most authoritative (and therefore trustworthy) are when a few things are going on:

- I've met my basic needs.

- I'm tuning into the moment, my kids, and myself.

- I'm not trying to be anything, in the sense of a perfect unschooling, gentle, or brand X parent.

post #64 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post




Sorry I thought we were talking specifically about the 6 year old whose father did want to let him watch Saw and whose mother doesn't limit any movies rated for teens, and who participated in the community aspct of SC where he had encountered cyberbullying.


 

 


Geekgolightly said she and her 6 yo haven't run into anything beyond game instruction on the in game chats on SC.  My 9 yo has, however, which is why I thought you were talking to me.  She doesn't let her 6 yo watch things like Saw although his father thinks they are not a problem.  I'm guessing we both let our kids watch some PG-13 things.  Personally, I read the reviews and make a judgment based on my particular child's sensitivities and why, exactly, they are rated PG-13. 

 

post #65 of 143

Well, my 15 year old is addicted to gaming - and has been for a long time.

 

This may be OT, but I always think of my post count when I worry about his addiction (for lack of a better word).  People in glass house should not throw stones, lol.

 

The bottom line is he seems happy.  He is a solid B student on his online courses, he looks forward to his drama group, he is kind to his family and is giving in many ways.  He is not without an issue or two - but they are not related to gaming.

 

I do think his addiction impacts his life in a few ways - but only because he stays up late to game, then sleeps in.  None of this is wrong, per se, but he has commitments he has taken on that he has to get up for, and he is a ogre to wake up!

 

OTOH, his 12 year sister who has no screen addictions has had one heck on a tumultuous year.  I think she may be coming out the other side (and we have both made serious efforts to change) - but ouch.  

 

I am not sure how this plays out for a younger child.  My 8 yr old is somewhat addicted to TV - and I feel bad, but I am not a perfect parent and I am not going to beat myself up for her watching too much tv.  She does other things while watching tv  (primarily draw, write and build) so i think it is often more background noise than anything.  I try to make sure our plates are as full as they need to be with indoor and outside the home activities (and again, I am not perfect, sometimes I fail) - what she does in her free time is her choice.

 

 

 

 

post #66 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post




Geekgolightly said she and her 6 yo haven't run into anything beyond game instruction on the in game chats on SC.  My 9 yo has, however, which is why I thought you were talking to me.  She doesn't let her 6 yo watch things like Saw although his father thinks they are not a problem.  I'm guessing we both let our kids watch some PG-13 things.  Personally, I read the reviews and make a judgment based on my particular child's sensitivities and why, exactly, they are rated PG-13. 

 


Sorry - you are right about the cyberbullying post. My bad.  I still don't think that Manhunt or Grand Theft auto or other "mature games" that geekgolightly was talking about are appropriate for a 5-7 year old and that kids are worthy of better options. These conversations always make me realize that I really don't belong in this forum  Carry on

 

.namaste.gif
 

Karen

 

post #67 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post




Sorry - you are right about the cyberbullying post. My bad.  I still don't think that Manhunt or Grand Theft auto or other "mature games" that geekgolightly was talking about are appropriate for a 5-7 year old and that kids are worthy of better options. These conversations always make me realize that I really don't belong in this forum  Carry on

 

.namaste.gif
 

Karen

 


Again, she didn't say her child played Manhunt and Grand Theft Auto.  She said he wanted to and she is not comfortable with the level of violence and is not letting him although his dad thinks it's fine.

 

post #68 of 143



 

Quote:
Originally Posted by geekgolightly View Post

My son is seven and he has wanted to play Manhunt since he was five. My husband feels that my son is really losing out because I won't let him watch Godfather. I can't let go of my gut feeling that this is flat out wrong, so I haven;t given in. I wish someone here had wrestled with this and sorted a way to be ok with it when discussing such a young kid such as my DS.

 

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.



Quote:

Originally Posted by 4evermom View Post

Again, she didn't say her child played Manhunt and Grand Theft Auto.  She said he wanted to and she is not comfortable with the level of violence and is not letting him although his dad thinks it's fine.

 


Yes I realize that but she has stated she wrestled with that and her son has played other "mature games" until she changed her mind. I was offering my opinion that that level of violence is not appropriate for 5-7 year old kids - regardless of your educational philosophy, and that it is okay to stand by that. But again I realize that's my opinion and not a popular one here clearly so I will bow out.

 

Karen

post #69 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Karenwith4 View Post

Quote:


Yes I realize that but she has stated she wrestled with that and her son has played other "mature games" until she changed her mind. I was offering my opinion that that level of violence is not appropriate for 5-7 year old kids - regardless of your educational philosophy, and that it is okay to stand by that. But again I realize that's my opinion and not a popular one here clearly so I will bow out.

 

Karen

Got it.thumb.gif  Most kids aren't interested in things they aren't ready for, IME.  Mine wouldn't even watch Scooby-Doo until last year, though he was ok with Lord of the Rings for some reason.  That's part of why it's so difficult when you usually trust your child to determine these things and it usually works out fine.  It just makes you think a bit and wonder if you are reacting to your own preconceived ideas (such as ice cream is not a breakfast food) or whether to continue trusting your child.  Some things are more clear cut than others but there's always a gray area.  It's just in different places for different families.  And kids are so different.  Those with sensitive kids never have to worry about their kids not self regulating scary things.  Those whose kids aren't bothered by scary things might feel it's just fine and fun for them....

 

post #70 of 143

Unschooling refers to home you educate your children. It is not referring to how you parent. However, there are plenty of unschoolers who chose to not parent their children at all. Not giving your children limits, directions, guidance, that would be unparenting, which IMHO is completely unacceptable. There are some parents who would let their children eat junk food all day long and play video games all day long and then act shocked when those kids are 30 yrs old and cannot handle life, live at home, fat, eating junk food, declaring "the right to happiness at the expense of others" at all times. I am sure there are some kids who just never needed parents and would have been fine parentless. But, that is the exception and not the rule. It really does a serious disservice to a child to not have a real parent around. Every child deserves a parent.

post #71 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa1970 View Post

Unschooling refers to home you educate your children. It is not referring to how you parent.

 

 

People who identify themselves as radical unschoolers focus on parenting without coercion.

 

Quote:
There are some parents who would let their children eat junk food all day long and play video games all day long and then act shocked when those kids are 30 yrs old and cannot handle life, live at home, fat, eating junk food, declaring "the right to happiness at the expense of others" at all times. 

 

My kids are young, but so far unlimited access to media and food has not been a problem.  They watch TV and do a lot of other things.  They eat junk food and a lot of other food.  As I've parented them, I've kind of deschooled myself in a way.  I've eaten my fill of junk, gorged on my fill of novels in my spare time.  Things get old after a while, and then you want some variety.  Then you find that place in yourself that honestly wants other foods and activities.

 

It seems that people who develop problems with food or activities are trying to escape from something, but unschoolers don't have much to escape from.

Do you know any people like the ones you describe?

post #72 of 143
Instead of having a specific limit, I do two things to try to help my kids learn how to moderate screen time. First I do my best to model healthy behavior, and I will verbalize what I'm doing-- like "I've been sitting here at the computer too long, and it's starting to give me a headache. I think I'll take a break." Second, if I see my kid doing something I think is unhealthy, but not immediately dangerous, like so much screen time that it's starting to affect their mood, I will ask them to pause the show or game (letting them get to a reasonable stopping point) and talk to them about why I think it might be good for them to take a break. At my best, I have an alternative, attractive activity to offer.

I'm not a radical unschooler, and sometimes I just tell them to turn off the tv/computer/whatever, but it's the stuff above that I see helping my kids learn to moderate, and it is working-- not overnight, but the message is getting through.

Basically, I provide guidance by talking a lot, and trying to listen too, so I understand if the guidance I'm providing is appreciated and relevant.
post #73 of 143
Another thought-- when we have gotten into an unhealthy routine, something that has helped me was to figure out where things were going off the rails, and deal with that. For example, there was a time when we had this problem with wasting whole mornings all the time-- the kids were watching tv shows they didn't really care about, and I was spending way too much time online. I realized that the difference between days where we did lots of interesting things, and days like that, that none of us felt good about, was turning the tv on before anyone had had breakfast. So we don't do that anymore. I suppose making the rule might be authoritarian, but the kids have really been fine with it-- they either eat and watch their show, or if they're not ready to eat, they go do something else.
post #74 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa1970 View Post

Unschooling refers to home you educate your children. It is not referring to how you parent. However, there are plenty of unschoolers who chose to not parent their children at all. 


One of the tenets of unschooling as I understand it is to not draw lines that separate "learning" from "life." Which really begs the question: how can you separate "educating" from "parenting?" If you follow the logic through, then unschooling is not just about how you educate your children, it's about how you raise them. Unless by educating you mean: teach them the skills of self-regulation, the habits of self-discipline, hygeine, health, social behaviour, healthy family dynamics, and all that. Then yes, it's about educating your children in that very broad sense.

 

Lisa, I find your pronouncements about the parenting practices of "plenty of" and "many" unschoolers to be simplistic and judgmental. I have to wonder what your purpose is in repeatedly posting such negative judgments in this forum. Personally I have yet to meet a family like you describe. I can think of a few families who might come across that way to someone with a particular set of preconceptions -- at least at a first or superficial meeting -- but there is a lot more to them than once you get to understand their family dynamic and get to know them. 

 

Miranda

post #75 of 143

Quote:

Lisa, I find your pronouncements about the parenting practices of "plenty of" and "many" unschoolers to be simplistic and judgmental. I have to wonder what your purpose is in repeatedly posting such negative judgments in this forum. Personally I have yet to meet a family like you describe. I can think of a few families who might come across that way to someone with a particular set of preconceptions -- at least at a first or superficial meeting -- but there is a lot more to them than once you get to understand their family dynamic and get to know them. 

I totally agree. I find it highly inappropriate to come into a forum of support with such negative opinions -- especially since you're extremely unlikely to come across any such parents in this forum -- a place where highly educated (whether it be academically or self-motivated) mamas come to read, learn, commiserate, do better, navigate situations, and who devote a good portion of their thought-life to doing what is in the best interest of their kids and families.

 

So, I do wonder what the motivation is?

 

The principle of unschooling, despite the surface disagreements among people who practice it regarding extremes in either direction, is that learning is always happening and that people are designed to seek the knowledge and tools they need to meet the agendas they've set for themselves.

 

I don't see the value in parenting which tells a child what they're "supposed" to be doing in every aspect of life, placing endless, often arbitrary limitations on what they can and can't do. Sure, people have varying comfort levels and boundaries (like, no way my 6 year old is watching Texas Chainsaw Massacre or porn), but they've got to also have opportunities to navigate situations that will occur at some point (such as, what if they happen to see porn at a friend's house on a parent's computer, what would they do?)

 

Someday they will have unlimited access to junk food, porn, horror movies, video games, and whatever other 'evil' or 'undesirable' thing you can think of in the world and mommy won't be there with her finger wagging over them forbidding them under threat of punishment or whatever. At some point, these things need to be navigated and while I don't go out of my way to introduce my child to things which go against my principles -- I realize they will indeed encounter them at some point.

 

It's my job as a parent to give her some tools beyond "don't do that, it's bad". Those tools involve some exposure to whatever 'thing',  (even if the 'exposure' comes in the form of an open dialog between us) --  talking about  how they feel when they choose it or don't choose it, consequences (good or bad) of choosing it, the difference between moderation and excess, how choosing it (or not) affects their body, their mood, family dynamics, and so on. Coming up with strategies that work for everyone where everyone feels heard, valued and validated.

 

So, to me it's far more "lazy" and "unparenting" to just say... "don't do that, it's bad". Where is the lesson in that?

 

 

post #76 of 143

I'm no mod but...

 

From the Unschooling Forum Guidelines: (bolding mine)

Quote:

Welcome to the Unschooling subforum! MDC's Unschooling subforum is one of support, respectful requests of information and sharing of ideas and experiences. To uphold this purpose, we will not host discussions of debate or criticism. Disagreements about unschooling should be set aside out of respect for the diversity and varying interpretations and beliefs that we hold as a community.

We will actively discourage an individual from solely posting for the purpose of disagreement, with no interest in practicing the belief or view in discussion, or who posts only to prove unschooling concepts to be wrong
, misguided or not based on fact. Controversial subjects related to unschooling can be found elsewhere on the internet, and we invite you to seek out other sites for this purpose

 

post #77 of 143

I do not watch horror movies, eat junk food etc.  What my child deside to eat or drink when they re 18 is their business but for now I am the one who is paying for food so I decide what I bring bring  into the house, Same with which video games I pay for and which not. If they want to do what they want...well , that is what adulthood is for but of course most of us, once we grow up, we learn that  absolute freedom is total delusion.

post #78 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alenushka View Post

I do not watch horror movies, eat junk food etc.  What my child deside to eat or drink when they re 18 is their business but for now I am the one who is paying for food so I decide what I bring bring  into the house, Same with which video games I pay for and which not. If they want to do what they want...well , that is what adulthood is for but of course most of us, once we grow up, we learn that  absolute freedom is total delusion.


I don't think unschooled kids believe that they have absolute freedom - simply living in this world is enough to dissuade anyone of that notion, I think. And if an authoritarian structure works well for your family then more power to you - it's great that you've found something that fits your life and value system. I do question why you're here in the Unschooling forum talking about it, though. Do you think of what you're doing as unschooling? If not, well, Tumble Bumbles has a point. This is a support only forum, not a place to criticize unschooling.
post #79 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alenushka View Post

I do not watch horror movies, eat junk food etc.  What my child deside to eat or drink when they re 18 is their business but for now I am the one who is paying for food so I decide what I bring bring  into the house, Same with which video games I pay for and which not. If they want to do what they want...well , that is what adulthood is for but of course most of us, once we grow up, we learn that  absolute freedom is total delusion.



This can work reasonably well for younger children - it does not work so well for older children and youths.  All of my kids have their own money - it is their money so they can do what they want with it.  There are a few things I will not allow in the house, but they are very few.

 

I am always a little floored by the above attitude (and I am not picking on you - I have seen it before).  If a child has no freedom to experiment in youth and is suddenly set free to do everything they want in adulthood, well, it seems like a bit of a disservice.  It is better, I think, to slowly loosen the reigns of control in a supportive setting so when they do reach the age of majority they are ready for it and decision making.

 

 

post #80 of 143
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dar View Post

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.
Off on a tangent but OMG I have this child and she is not a teen or preteen, she is not even five yet. Help! I moderate an RU list and some days I feel like I should resign because meeting her needs (and actual requests) is on the surface so far from what most people imagine RU to be and the next day is one like today where I hear "Mama, it's about time you started letting me do some of the things I want to!". Sigh, since when have I not? eyesroll.gif
Sorry, back to your very interesting conversation...
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Unschooling
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Childhood and Beyond › Education › Learning at Home and Beyond › Unschooling › Where's the line between laziness and radical unschooling?