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#121 of 395 Old 02-20-2007, 10:05 AM
 
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fourlittlebirds, you win the prize. As long-winded as I can be, I can't think of a single thing to add to your post other than, :

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#122 of 395 Old 02-20-2007, 12:15 PM
 
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When this topic of subforums started I did not agree that a subforum was needed. Reading more replies and meditating on the issue, I alter my opinion on the necessity. It seems like it would be worth trying a subforum to see what really happens. I'm sure it will be well used as unschoolers are a large, vocal part of the learning at home forum. It makes me sad that anyone would feel uncomfortable or frustrated trying to find information or feel connected.

I still think the sticky thread reorganization would be a great idea regardless of a subforum being added.

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#123 of 395 Old 02-28-2007, 01:37 PM
 
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Has this idea officially been axed?

I have some random thoughts on the matter.

What *is* the criteria for a subforum being made? Out of curiosity, why is there a vegetarian forum? Not picking on vegetarians it's just the best example I can think of. Vegetarians eat food right? So why can't vegetarians just post in the regular nutrition forum? It seems to be the same thing to me.

The question of how it would be managed - wouldn't that be the same as any other subforum? There must be guidelines already in place, right? In the nutrition forum, there isn't a big worry over making sure vegetarians stay in their subforum, or making sure there are no vegetarian threads in the regular forum or no vegetarians posting on non-vegetarian threads. I'd imagine this would be the same.

Or an even better example - the school forum. Waldorf and Montessori are both schools right? So why should they be in subforums, why not just all post together in the school forum? Why does it make sense for them to have a separate subforum but not unschoolers?

Is it sheer numbers? I know we can't have a subforum for every possible thing, but given that there are so many unshchoolers, it makes sense to me to have one. Waldorf and Montessori have their own forums because there are a lot of them right? Then there's "other" because there just aren't enough "other" school parents to warrant their own subforums.

The idea to start every thread with "Unschoolers" - I know the suggestion was made in good faith (and by an unschooler too - a very cool one!) but I really don't like that idea. To me, that is more segregating than having our own forum.

Someone posted that if someone says something about unschooled kids growing up illiterate (or other such negative remarks) we should just ignore it and move on. I can't do that. I used to try and not let stuff like that affect me. I gave it my best try for a long time, I really did. I finally realized I can't read stuff like that and not have it affect me. Instead, I choose the positive. I made a conscious choice to walk away from negative . . . . vibes (that's the best way I can put it ) and I've been the better for it.

Anyway, I just wanted to put my two cents in so at the very least, I can say I gave my opinion.

Out of curiosity, a few people mentioned there were so many unschooling forums out there. All the ones I've found online are very slow and not vibrant and alive communities like MDC. If anyone knows any thriving unschooling boards out there please PM me, ok? I'm not interested in email lists (got enough of those ;-)
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#124 of 395 Old 02-28-2007, 03:00 PM
 
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For real. Very well said, Shannon. (You said what I would've said with more coffee & less fighting kids in the background .)
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#125 of 395 Old 02-28-2007, 04:06 PM
 
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Has this idea officially been axed?
thats what i have been wondering, your whole post was very well said

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#126 of 395 Old 02-28-2007, 06:53 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ShannonCC View Post
Has this idea officially been axed?

I have some random thoughts on the matter.

What *is* the criteria for a subforum being made? Out of curiosity, why is there a vegetarian forum? Not picking on vegetarians it's just the best example I can think of. Vegetarians eat food right? So why can't vegetarians just post in the regular nutrition forum? It seems to be the same thing to me.
There have been no official posts from moderators saying it's been officially axed, therefore it hasn't been. But it's a lot of work to add subforums, and they don't do it very frequently. When they're ready for the next round of subforum-adding, they'll take a look at all the potential new subforums and make decisions then.

The reason behind the veggie subforum, which was added at the same time as the traditional foods subforum, is that the nutrition forum was populated by two groups of people with very different philosophies towards nutrition. Far too many simple recipe or meal plan requests got sidetracked into nutrition debates.

I don't see so many "debate" threads at "Learning at home and beyond" so much as I'm not seeing many unschoolers posting at all. But then again, maybe there just isnt' so much to talk about- you trust your kid, you play together, learning happens along the way- it's not like you need to prepare or purchase a curriculum and continue searching for new resources and figure out how to teach something YOU think your child needs to learn but your child isnt' grasping immediately or isn't fully interested in.

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#127 of 395 Old 02-28-2007, 08:32 PM
 
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The reason behind the veggie subforum, which was added at the same time as the traditional foods subforum, is that the nutrition forum was populated by two groups of people with very different philosophies towards nutrition. Far too many simple recipe or meal plan requests got sidetracked into nutrition debates.
Sounds like the homeschooling forum to me I'm not against the vegetarian subforum by the way (sorry if it sounded like that). I was using that as an example. I just think the unschoolers have just as much a need as a subforum as the vegetarians (or the NT people, or the extended nursing people, or the UC people).

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I don't see so many "debate" threads at "Learning at home and beyond" so much as I'm not seeing many unschoolers posting at all.
I'm one of the unschoolers not posting at all and it's because I finally realized I had to sit on my fingers and walk away. I haven't left MDC obviously but I haven't posted on the homeschooling board in months. But I've survived I haven't found a homeschooling board to replace this one though. I have a local unschooling list I love but I just like boards. The format suits me.

But if it's decided there won't be an unschooling forum I'm ok with that, I just want to get my opinion heard as being for it.

Quote:
But then again, maybe there just isnt' so much to talk about- you trust your kid, you play together, learning happens along the way- it's not like you need to prepare or purchase a curriculum and continue searching for new resources and figure out how to teach something YOU think your child needs to learn but your child isnt' grasping immediately or isn't fully interested in.
I only speak for me, but what I want is a place where I can talk about our life without someone else negatively questioning me on what I'm doing. Again to use the vegetarian forum as an example, as you said, they wanted a place where they could discuss recipes without inviting debate. I want a place where I can discuss our lives without inviting debate.

I didn't know adding subforums was something done every now and then though. I have no idea what it takes to run a board (obviously, ). I just didn't want this thread to die and have it assumed no one cared
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#128 of 395 Old 03-01-2007, 05:18 PM
 
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I agree with everything you said, Shannon. I dunno, it just seems obvious that there are other forums it's been good for, and the potential negatives people are concerned about just haven't materialized.

Here's something interesting: before the UC forum was opened, there was an average of two threads a month specifically about UC. Now there are on average 60 threads per month, the same as the homebirth forum. Clearly it served a need to give us our own space.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruthla
There have been no official posts from moderators saying it's been officially axed, therefore it hasn't been. But it's a lot of work to add subforums, and they don't do it very frequently. When they're ready for the next round of subforum-adding, they'll take a look at all the potential new subforums and make decisions then.
That's good to know, that way we don't feel like we're just being ignored.

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The reason behind the veggie subforum, which was added at the same time as the traditional foods subforum, is that the nutrition forum was populated by two groups of people with very different philosophies towards nutrition. Far too many simple recipe or meal plan requests got sidetracked into nutrition debates.
That's exactly the case in the homeschooling forum. Aside from both occuring outside of institutions, homeschooling and unschooling are totally different philosophies toward education. In most of the homeschooling threads, my comments are not welcome or relevant, because they're not interested in looking at things from an unschooling perspective. I've lost count of how many times I've heard people complain about unschoolers coming on threads that are about how to control this or that aspect of the child's life and say something like, "oh, it'll be okay if you just trust them to blah blah blah." Just recently the same thing happened on an unschooling thread -- even titled "UNSCHOOLING" -- with people who aren't unschoolers coming on there to make negative comments about the unschooling approach. And the reason both sides get annoyed by this is because the two approaches are so different.

Quote:
I don't see so many "debate" threads at "Learning at home and beyond" so much as I'm not seeing many unschoolers posting at all. But then again, maybe there just isnt' so much to talk about-
I couldn't disagree more. There are some unschooling e-lists that are so active that I couldn't keep up with them if I tried. But like Shannon, I don't like e-lists. They're difficult for me to navigate and inconvenient. Like I said before, I'd like to see this happening here at my home, where I live.

Personally, I don't post often because there's not a lot going on that's relevant to me (although I really believe that would change as it did with the UC forum) and I dislike having to wade through a bunch of stuff that I don't like and don't agree with to find what I do, only to have that "space" invaded by those who aren't supportive of unschooling. It's just not appealing enough to have me spending my time there frequently.
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#129 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 07:43 PM
 
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Personally, I don't post often because there's not a lot going on that's relevant to me (although I really believe that would change as it did with the UC forum) and I dislike having to wade through a bunch of stuff that I don't like and don't agree with to find what I do, only to have that "space" invaded by those who aren't supportive of unschooling. It's just not appealing enough to have me spending my time there frequently.
that.
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#130 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 08:41 PM
 
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I have tried to make my feelings known in the homeschooling forum and been told that all I have to do is title my thread "unschooling support only" and that if I just do THAT, that I should be able to get what I need.

It's just not about that. There needs to be a place for the unschooling community. I've tried to point out that there are many unschoolers lurking around who would love a place to be. I would love to converse with all of the intelligent unschoolers lurking out there!

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#131 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 09:12 PM
 
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I have tried to make my feelings known in the homeschooling forum and been told that all I have to do is title my thread "unschooling support only" and that if I just do THAT, that I should be able to get what I need.
Oh, you mean like this:

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...hlight=support

except it deteriorated pretty quickly into 7 pages of "define unschooling."

Not that that can't be an interesting debate, but the thread started out specifically as a thread for unschoolers to talk--it doesn't seem that titling a thread "unschooling support only" works.

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There needs to be a place for the unschooling community.
Yep.

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#132 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 09:56 PM
 
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Oh, you mean like this:

http://www.mothering.com/discussions...hlight=support

except it deteriorated pretty quickly into 7 pages of "define unschooling."

Not that that can't be an interesting debate, but the thread started out specifically as a thread for unschoolers to talk--it doesn't seem that titling a thread "unschooling support only" works.



Yep.
Well, to be fair. This thread was *not* entitled Unschooling Support Only. But that is besides the point.

What is unschooling as defined by MDC?

If we could define unschooling, we would not have these threads. Simple.

What my family does is more like unschooling than what most unschoolers do, but I do not feel I can respond to such thread unless I know what 'unschooling' is via MDC. I feel that I always have to add a caveat because it's so confusing.

The OP in this particular thread uses a language curriculm, so I was not sure what unschooling meant to her, or how I should respond. (Nothing wrong on either end...juyst how does one respond when when does not know what unschooling means to various people?) I wanted to help, but I simply was not sure what was being asked. I feel I had something to offer, but did not want to step on toes if the poster's definition was different from mine. I asked for clarification, & as you can see from the thread, there was none. It's all over the board.

There is no agreement on the thread, no matter. Self-identifying does not make one an unschooler, imo. Sometimes I am dizzy with what people think is unschooling.

It seems to me that *any* question asked in the hs forum...doesn't matter what...is answered by "Let them play" & " Read to them" . Which is fine and legit, yet begs the question -- why do we need an USing forum? The questions change, but the answers never do.

Don't tell me what other people/groups/websites say, tell me what it means at MDC.

If MDC is going to host an Unschooler forum, it needs to be defined. Period.
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#133 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 10:26 PM
 
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I think I've changed my mind... I think I'd be for a separate unschooling board. The learning at school gets separate boards for diff styles, so maybe hs should too. I'd also like to see some sort of definition for what unschooling actually is.

And off topic, it seems like there really needs to be a sticky (or maybe a whole separate board) concerning preK "hs". It seems like the hs board frequently gets cluttered with ppl looking for preK hs suggestions. And then everyone (of course) is like read to your dc, do crafts, library trips, etc. Same thing over and over. Honestly, I come to the hs board looking to see what the people with older kids (the "official" hsers) are doing, what unschooling is like, fun hands-on secular curric suggestions... from people who have a little more experience and have more of an idea what they are doing, so that when my ds reaches 5 or 6, hopefully I won't be so clueless

Just my 2 cents
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#134 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 10:27 PM
 
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I asked for clarification, & as you can see from the thread, there was none. It's all over the board.

....

If MDC is going to host an Unschooler forum, it needs to be defined. Period.
I just went and read through that thread. No, there was no clarification of unschooling on that thread, EXCEPT for the fact that everyone participating "self-identified" as an unschooler, or as someone trying to unschool or incorporate more unschooling. Respectfully, you are the one who introduced the idea on that thread that unschooling had to be defined to have the conversation. Everyone else was OK leaving unschooling undefined or very loosely defined.

I completely disagree that there needs to be a strict MDC definition of unschooling in order to have an unschooling forum.

And I'm chiming back in as one who would post a whole lot more in an unschooling forum.
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#135 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 10:41 PM
 
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I just went and read through that thread. No, there was no clarification of unschooling on that thread, EXCEPT for the fact that everyone participating "self-identified" as an unschooler, or as someone trying to unschool or incorporate more unschooling. Respectfully, you are the one who introduced the idea on that thread that unschooling had to be defined to have the conversation. Everyone else was OK leaving unschooling undefined or very loosely defined.

I completely disagree that there needs to be a strict MDC definition of unschooling in order to have an unschooling forum.

And I'm chiming back in as one who would post a whole lot more in an unschooling forum.

I'm the only one asked for clarification, yes.

I think you should start a thread. What might happen if you post?

And...the thing is.. most of the people who post as unschoolers have too many rules, imo. As a person who identities as 'relaxed', I don't have nearly (I have none) the many rules (food, bedtimes, tv etc) as most of the people who claim unschooling as their label.
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#136 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 10:48 PM
 
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unschoolers are some pretty laidback people , i don't think they would read and stay skeered for long.

my personal definition is 'do you use a curriculum, or does a curriculum use you?' but that's just me. and i would post soooo much more in a like-minded community. i get in conversations around town, on other specific forums, find out someone is hsing 'like me', and i end up :. i can't relate on that level. expectations are so different- if you have other family that intensively homeSCHOOLS & you emphasize that you don't do that, you'd better have some thick skin till your kids take their SATs and you can breath a sigh of relief.
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#137 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 10:56 PM
 
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unschoolers are some pretty laidback people , i don't think they would read and stay skeered for long.

my personal definition is 'do you use a curriculum, or does a curriculum use you?' but that's just me. and i would post soooo much more in a like-minded community. i get in conversations around town, on other specific forums, find out someone is hsing 'like me', and i end up :. i can't relate on that level. expectations are so different- if you have other family that intensively homeSCHOOLS & you emphasize that you don't do that, you'd better have some thick skin till your kids take their SATs and you can breath a sigh of relief.
You know I love you. :

However, until MDC makes that/your distinction, the defininition is floating.

I have been here long enough to see that many people who call themselves unschoolers really are not. People *are* skeered to identify otherwise. One can't be an unschooler & demand their kid study something in particular, read a particular book, or cook something particular, or do some art project with particular media.
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#138 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 11:24 PM
 
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And...the thing is.. most of the people who post as unschoolers have too many rules, imo. As a person who identities as 'relaxed', I don't have nearly (I have none) the many rules (food, bedtimes, tv etc) as most of the people who claim unschooling as their label.
Having rules about food and bedtime might be incompatible with radical unschooling, but what would make them incompatible with ordinary old academic unschooling?

I just left an unschooling mailing list when I discovered that, although nothing in the list information specified that it was for radical unschoolers only, people who talked about having chores or rules for their kids were directly informed that they were not unschooling.

I hope that an unschooling forum on MDC would not be that restrictive.

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#139 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 11:35 PM
 
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Hence my emphasis on including eclectic/relaxed. We (my community) get along fine, with radicals too. It's school-at-home traditionalists who freak us out (and vice/versa).
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#140 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 11:45 PM
 
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UUMom, you want Unschooling Rules defined about not using rules while unschooling, do I follow?


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#141 of 395 Old 03-02-2007, 11:56 PM
 
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UUMom, you want Unschooling Rules defined about not using rules while unschooling, do I follow?
Pat
Simple: If MDC is going to host an unschooling forum, I want them to define what they believe Unschooling to be.
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#142 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 12:25 AM
 
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I don't think it needs to be defined. I'm not radical, I'll admit, but I have no problem with anyone posting on an unschooling forum as long as they are respectful. I really think having a forum named unschooling will *encourage* that respect.

To bring out my old, tired analogy on the vegetarian board it's not limited to only vegetarians. Anyone can post as long as they are respectful of vegetarianism. A meat eater wouldn't go there and post a recipe for steak tartar, but they can go there and ask for recipes for beets or give tips on how to make a great salad or whatever.

Sure there will be people on the unschooling forum who aren't unschoolers and either just want to learn more about it, or who feel more comfortable there even though they know they aren't unschoolers, or, yes, who think they are unschoolers even when they are assigning book reports and math worksheets. Still, I think most people will have the common sense to not go to the unschooling board to ask the best way to get their kids to do their work or suggestions on how many book reports to assign. Or if they do, I'd hope they'd at least be open to hearing that maybe they should try unschooling.

That's all I want really. Mainly a place to hang out where I can be inspired by the people who are more unschooly than I am. Where I can ask for ideas and suggestions (because yes, unschoolers need them too!). Where I can vent my occasional (very human) worries and get unschooling perspectives. I'd love to have a place like that on MDC
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#143 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 12:43 AM
 
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Well, let's play with that idea...about being unschooly...in an unschooly forum.

What is unschooly? I know some people say it's simple, but is it?

An example--

People ask about helping a little child to read...ok, it's a tired subject...but how do you answer this in an unschooly way?

I know one answer is to 'Read to them' , and another is, 'Leave them be, they will learn'.

If we don't know what unschooling is, per MDC, how can we answer other than the above...or is nothing than the above an ok answer?

Honestly, what other answers would be apporpriate in an unschooling fourm? If someone suggests a book...or Starfall? (Which we don't like-- and I think we are the only family in the English speaking world who doesn't like Starfall...)

I am not being snarky, I struggle with wondering.
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#144 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 12:54 AM
 
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To bring out my old, tired analogy on the vegetarian board it's not limited to only vegetarians. Anyone can post as long as they are respectful of vegetarianism. A meat eater wouldn't go there and post a recipe for steak tartar, but they can go there and ask for recipes for beets or give tips on how to make a great salad or whatever.
Shannon, I don't think it's a tired analogy. It's a good analogy because there are a lot of different types of vegetarians there...people who eat dairy but no meat, people who are vegans, and those who eat only raw foods, and probably some frutarians as well. They come together because they don't eat meat but they don't seem to need to DEFINE anything other than that it's a vegetarian forum.

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#145 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 01:06 AM
 
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Shannon, I don't think it's a tired analogy. It's a good analogy because there are a lot of different types of vegetarians there...people who eat dairy but no meat, people who are vegans, and those who eat only raw foods, and probably some frutarians as well. They come together because they don't eat meat but they don't seem to need to DEFINE anything other than that it's a vegetarian forum.
Well, yeah. Vegetarians don't eat meat.

But unschoolers don't do what? Use curriculm? Teach chicldren to read? Use workbooks? Watch TV?

I don't think I'm stupick...but I know vegetarians never eat meat, but I still don't know exactly what unschoolers never do...except make their children cry over worksheets...but neither do most MDC hsers...(OK, maybe some do...but then we would have to ask ourselves what sort of parents are the core of MDC).
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#146 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 01:07 AM
 
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I'd say what do your kids respond to & enjoy? It's not that scary a topic. If they don't, do something else. There is such a big wide wonderful world to learn about!

Ds & I were playing a purely noneducational game for pleasure earlier, & there was vocabulary with spelling/meaning, deductive reasoning, math... we had fun, & the learning just happened.
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#147 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 02:29 AM - Thread Starter
 
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eh I've pretty much given up at this point. I open a thread that has unschooling in the title and find a bunch of "make your kid get up and do what you say blah blah blah" for suggestions.

And most of the other general homeschooling threads are about how to teach your preschooler to read or what curriculum should I use. This is the prime reason I've barely posted over there in the 5 years since the crash.

Even the one unschooling support thread was totally taken over with debate over defining unschooling.

I just want to talk with people that share similar lifestyle. And at this point it just isn't worth the work required to find them.
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#148 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 09:35 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UUMom View Post
Well, to be fair. This thread was *not* entitled Unschooling Support Only. But that is besides the point.
It WAS titled "Unschooling Support" are you saying that the word "only" would have made a difference? (Did you follow the link I posted?)

And it is relevant because my point was, that rather than having an unschooling forum, it was suggested that someone start an unschooling support thread if they just wanted to talk to other unschoolers. That was done, and it didn't work because people who did not define as unschoolers brought their questions and debates there.

There is certainly room for questions and debates, but there doesn't seem to be a place for talk/support/chit chat/sharing amoung unschoolers.

Many people have expressed that an unschooling forum would fill a need here. Anyone who doesn't feel that, wouldn't have to post there, of course. I think that if someone isn't sure if they're an unschooler, they could hang out on the unschooling forum, read along, and decide for themselves if they feel comfortable posting in that atmosphere.

Arduinna, you're not alone. I really do think there are enough unschoolers here, both active and lurking, to make this worthwhile.

Single Mom to 3 (12, 17 & 21)  luxlove.gif and dog2.gif.

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#149 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 09:43 AM
 
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I noticed this whole thread was started with a question,

I'm curious if anyone here thinks we need an unschooling subforum?

Which sort of sets the tone for exploration, debate, defining, questioning, etc. Perhaps someone should make a manifesto, such as:

THIS IS A THREAD FOR UNSCHOOLERS AND THEIR FRIENDS. WELCOME!

Just an idea.

Signed,
A friend of Unschoolers
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#150 of 395 Old 03-03-2007, 10:15 AM
 
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There are currently 3 threads on the main hsing board with the word Unschoolers in them, and no debates whatsoever. Just good conversation.

There are also threads that anyone could join. A road travel thread, a chicken thread, a socialization thread... and others that have nothing to do with curricic, worksheets, or teaching 2 yr olds to read.
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