The past three mornings, my youngest (5) has slept in, so it's just been the two older kids (7 and 8) at the breakfast table with me. Any time one of the kids is out of the mix for some reason, it really tends to change the dynamics some, if you know what I mean.
Anyway, each morning we've had a really interesting, totally unplanned conversation that demonstrates how natural and easy learning can be in an unschooling family:
Wednesday--8-year-old DS was talking about his new Beyblade top, and how two of the decals on it were called "the eyes of Medusa." I asked if he knew why, or who Medusa was. (He's previously been very interested in the mythological and historical references embedded in the Beyblade game and TV series.) We spent thirty minutes online looking at artists' depictions of Medusa (7-year-old DD is really interested in art), reading the story of Medusa and Perseus, and discussing parallels. We also discovered the existence of BeyWiki, an online encyclopedia of Beyblade culture.
Thursday--8-year-old DS asked me a question (I don't remember what it was), to which I responded, "on average." He then wanted to know what "average" meant--whether it indicated a range of possible answers or a specific answer. We talked about different ways the word is used, and what it means in the strict mathematical sense. We then calculated the average age of a member of our family, and the average age of the children in our neighborhood.
Today--I brought up a discussion we had overheard at the pool, between one kid who had said to the another, "I'll see you at church!" and the other who had responded, "We don't go to church!" My kids thought the original speaker seemed surprised that someone wouldn't go to church, and wanted to know if when I was a child (in a very religious family) I realized that not everyone went. We talked about possible ways my children can respond to others who question our lack of religious participation. This somehow morphed into a conversation about racial discrimination, and the history of slavery in America, and why people in different parts of the world have different skin color, and common ancestors, and our body's Vitamin D requirements, etc. The conversation just went on and on with questions and observations, and I never had to say anything that would make the children say, "Enough already!" or feel that I was trying to teach them.
I just thought I'd share. I know all unschooling families experience hundreds or thousands of moments similar to these.