Great post about late readers and unschooling - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 5 Old 03-09-2011, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
 
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http://un-schooled.net/?p=538

 

While the story of her friend was sad, I really appreciate her perspective on how parents of unschoolers can allow their slow readers to blossom in their own timeline and not subject them to the arbitrary deadlines of institutional schooling.  I love Kate's blog anyway, but this post moved me in particular this morning.

 

I think rather than worry about slow readers, we ought to be thankful that we can allow them the extra time they need, and not be held to the standards of a system that places artificial one-size-fits-all standards on kids.


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#2 of 5 Old 03-09-2011, 06:49 PM
 
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Thanks for sharing this person's blog. I enjoy it. We're going through a bit of a crisis here with DS8 who is brilliant and creative and wonderful. I can't seem to let go of the idea that SOME subjects have to be forced! What the heck is wrong with me! I think it's hurting my child. (but I get waffle-y because I think that the lack of CHALLENGES will hurt my child, will fail to help him have self-esteem from having accomplished something that was hard; will lead him to take "the easy way out" and then he will feel he's "behind" other kids and not knowing the things they know (most of his friends are homeschooled in a slightly more formal way). So I don't want him to suffer that whole "underachievement" thing so I try and get him to do "lessons" and then we end up in a coercion situation.

 

Now I think that if I stop "lessons" (by which I mean the MEREST of writing practice, reading practice and math; I'm talking work that takes less than an hour if he just did it but way more than an hour if you count the resultant drama), I'm just waffling AGAIN...I am starting to lose all confidence in myself as being able to manage this. Seriously. I suck at this. Where is my TRUST? Where is my assurance that it will all be OK?

 

I am wondering if I just need to de-school myself. Mind you, I'm about a thousand years old and haven't been in school in ages, but what I mean is the mindset. I was the high-performing little girl who got the A's so daddy would be happy with me. It all had nothing to do with learning, but everything to do with getting the adults to clap like trained seals whenever they saw my report card. But on the plus side, I developed tremendous confidence that I could handle anything that was handed to me, school-wise.

 

Maybe I should just take a period to de-school and just say OK we are going to be pure unschooling for the rest of this school year and I will stop tormenting him. I'm sure I can think of something clever to tell the school district by way of reporting.

 

Thanks for listening. I realize this is a rant but I do feel very down in the dumps about the idea that I might have been flubbing things up for my kid.

 

 

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#3 of 5 Old 03-09-2011, 08:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I go through phases of what Miranda (moominmama) calls "Periodic Unschoolers' Panic Disorder" or PUPD.  I'm worried that relaxing about kids' schooling will harm them; then I'm worried that bugging them about school will harm them; then I'm worried that worrying will harm them.

 

Hubby is usually pretty good for me when I get all tied up in knots like this.  He assures me that there are no such things as perfect parents and we're destined to screw them up no matter what we do anyway.  Thanks Dear.  So I take a deep breath and keep on truckin'.  :)


Erin caffix.gif , Happy wife of Honey Bearguitar.gif , mom of Curly Miss (11/04), Little Mister (10/06), Princess Abi (3/08), and The Bean (9/09) jumpers.gifadoptionheart-1.gif  <>< oh, and I blog.

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#4 of 5 Old 03-10-2011, 02:39 PM
 
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Thanks for that link. Am enjoying the blog very much. 


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#5 of 5 Old 03-10-2011, 02:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NellieKatz View Post

then he will feel he's "behind" other kids and not knowing the things they know (most of his friends are homeschooled in a slightly more formal way).



The one issue I've had to deal with with unschooling is this type of thinking, but not just on a friend/peer level - also on a sibling level.

 

Those who do traditional/curriculum homeschool or public school have the assurance that their kids have the same learning base. Those of us who unschool don't. My kids, based on their interests, might have vastly different knowledge bases and I had to learn to be ok with that. I am now, but it took me a few years to work through it.

 

Maybe it will help if you accept that he will be 'behind' (however much that is worth) in some areas from his homeschooled peers, but very, very much farther ahead (however much that is worth) in other areas. Also accept that those homeschooled friends will be 'behind' and 'ahead' of public schooled children in your area who will be 'behind' and 'ahead' of public school kids in the next district over who will be 'behind' and 'ahead' of kids in the next state over. It would help him to realize that too if he does end up feeling 'behind' - something that may never happen.


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