unschooling large families - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 6 Old 02-19-2004, 09:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I find myself often interested in connecting with unschooling families with numerous children. Perhaps it's just me but sometimes I feel like the unschooling experience is different with larger families than those with one or two kids. Maybe unschooling is simply unschooling regardless of number of children but there have been times I've found myslef frustrated when I have felt unable to nurture, as I would like, the lead/interest of one child given the needs or desires of the others. Have others experienced this? It's quite a balancing act. I don't question the unschooling path (we've pretty much unschooled from the start....10,8,4,4,11 months) but would now and again like to connect in with larger families. Does anyone know of a discussion group for large unschooling families?
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#2 of 6 Old 02-21-2004, 02:46 AM
 
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Sorry I don't know of a discussion thread for unschooling large families, but as an unschooling mom of a large family I understand where you are coming from. We have 7 children, and even though 3 of them are grown now and out of the nest, I still feel like the 4 at home have such varied interests and abilities that I am often pulled in wanting to go in too many directions at once.
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#3 of 6 Old 02-24-2004, 12:17 AM
 
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I tried desperately to unschool but felt like I "had" to give them some book work if I wanted them to learn anything. There is just no way (that I know of) with the baby and the 3 yo to unschool the way it probably should be done. Would love to know if there's a better way, though!

Amy - Blessed wife to Jesse (the best dad in the world), mother of 10 on earth plus 8 in heaven.   PROUD to be a Catholic! : winner.jpg familybed2.gifhomeschool.gif

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#4 of 6 Old 02-24-2004, 02:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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In my opinion, there are many variations of unschooling as there are homeschooling approaches. Sometimes I have found myself comparing our approach of unschooling to those who frequently post on unschooling.com (which I enjoy) and think ....... hmmmmm, that's not quite my interpretation of unschooling. In times of doubt I re-read my underlined Holt books, peruse favorite articles, minimize frequency on unschooling sights and reflect on how I think my children and our family will grow and learn best. Sooooo....where am I going with this.........I guess, I too, have felt on occasion that without a book tossed their (older kids)way they won't learn alll they need to know with little ones romping about. It's in those times I reflect (by doing the above) the most and always arrive at the same place.....unschooling, as WE define it. By the way, Barbara, I love ........."live what you love....".
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#5 of 6 Old 02-25-2004, 04:19 AM
 
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By the way, Barbara, I love ........."live what you love....".
Thanks

It is hard to feel like you are doing all you can when there is a toddler in the middle of the table and a baby demanding your full attention. I guess I found that the only way was for my kids to really take responsibility for their own education. What I mean by that is that they know that no one is going to force feed them knowledge or chase them down and make them do "school work." If they want to learn and "be smart" which they do, they have to make the effort themselves.

Not to say that I leave them unattended, or abandoned in learning, I'm always here encouraging, making suggestions, answering questions, ooohing and ahing over their projects, driving them to interesting places, and providing a rich and varied enviroment.

Another thing I think is essential in a large family, is to get everyone's cooperation in keeping the enviroment clean and tidy. Mom can't do it alone, and so I found that showing them how to do simply household chores early on, having fun while doing them and expecting everyone to work together helps to set the tone for cooperation, and enjoying the day to day tasks.
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#6 of 6 Old 02-26-2004, 12:12 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by barbara
Another thing I think is essential in a large family, is to get everyone's cooperation in keeping the enviroment clean and tidy. Mom can't do it alone, and so I found that showing them how to do simply household chores early on, having fun while doing them and expecting everyone to work together helps to set the tone for cooperation, and enjoying the day to day tasks.
Amen to that! I have really started getting the kids to help out around the house. It's a must. Especially with homeschooling.

Amy - Blessed wife to Jesse (the best dad in the world), mother of 10 on earth plus 8 in heaven.   PROUD to be a Catholic! : winner.jpg familybed2.gifhomeschool.gif

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