February Unschooling Thread - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 04:00 PM
 
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the teenagers got a game called warhammer. looks very complicated.

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#62 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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greenmama, my elder dd's middle name is Alessandra I was reading The Agony and The Ecstasy when pregnant with her and came across the name. She was one of Michaelangelo's aunts.

Today, I cleaned out all our craft supplies. As I put stuff back into the drawers and cabinets, DD saw tons of stuff she wanted to use. LOL She is happy to "find" all the stuff that was buried in there!
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#63 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 05:08 PM
 
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While I do understand the idea that we don't need to get them to learn things wouldn't it still be unschooling to encourage her to discover them by having some books with numbers around, maybe play a game with dice that have printed numbers rather than pips, and gently point out and read all the signs with numbers written on them. A game driving to see who can find the next number first "There is a 1, lets see who see's the next 2 first." Of course if she doesn't want to then wait, but isn't playing with material you want them to notice still unschooling?

oops time for theater.
I guess from the op's wording, "How do I Get her to learn..." I got the idea that this isn't a case of the child being interested in numbers but that mom is instituting this requirement because MOM feels it's necessary. Plenty of people do this, but it's not my idea of unschooling.

We do have books with numbers, and play games with dice, as well as playing games on long car rides, but for us, they're just games--they're not games with the goal of pointing out numbers or encouraging anyone to discover anything.

Numbers, like letters, are all over. It's pretty hard to ignore them. I don't have anything against number games, but I don't use them with any agenda.

To me, it's not the activity itself that makes something unschooling or not. It's more about the intention. If a parent makes up a game to get a child to learn their numbers, then that's the parent's idea, the parent's goal and the parent's expectation that the child will meet that goal.

Unschooling, to me, is more about what the child is driven to learn.

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#64 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 05:24 PM
 
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Marinewife, Is Warhammer a subscription game, (like WoW) or do you buy the game (like Guildwars?) It looks like something my ds would be into.

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#65 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 06:54 PM
 
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Marinewife, Is Warhammer a subscription game, (like WoW) or do you buy the game (like Guildwars?) It looks like something my ds would be into.

Ds said that he's pretty sure Warhammer is a real time strategy game that you just buy like Guildwars, but he isn't sure. He plays Guildwars but doesn't have Warhammer yet.

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#66 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 07:06 PM
 
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Numbers, like letters, are all over. It's pretty hard to ignore them. I don't have anything against number games, but I don't use them with any agenda.

To me, it's not the activity itself that makes something unschooling or not. It's more about the intention. If a parent makes up a game to get a child to learn their numbers, then that's the parent's idea, the parent's goal and the parent's expectation that the child will meet that goal.

Unschooling, to me, is more about what the child is driven to learn.
Right. For us learning is living and living is learning. I seek to help my kids learn what they have interest in if they need my help, but not every game or book is about acquiring new skills. We often do acquire them just as a natural by-product, but it's not always the goal. And if my kids are not interested in something I am not seeking a way to "get them interested".

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#67 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 07:51 PM
 
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---To me, it's not the activity itself that makes something unschooling or not. It's more about the intention. If a parent makes up a game to get a child to learn their numbers, then that's the parent's idea, the parent's goal and the parent's expectation that the child will meet that goal.--



So can you make up a game your child didn't ask for & still describe yourself to fellow hsers as an unschooler? Is having an agenda to make a number game not unschooling? Or is it still unschooling if the child can walk away or agrees to a game that is described as one of many ways to have fuin with numbers-- and if you present the game by telling the child you don't have any goals about the child and numbers? Is pointing out numbers on a menu at a resaturant an agenda? Is pointint out a red light to tell your child it means stop having an agenda to teach that red means stop in a stoplight? Does having the the parental goal and agenda of wanting a child to love learning and life mean you aren't unschooling?
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#68 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 08:06 PM
 
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Marinewife, Is Warhammer a subscription game, (like WoW) or do you buy the game (like Guildwars?) It looks like something my ds would be into.
I'm pretty sure it's an actual physical game. DH's friends are huge into it and one guys has a big set-up in his basement. All the guys get together and bring their little figurine guys. I make fun of them for being such geeks.



Anyone who has happy vibes to spare, please send them my way today! I'm having a really rough day with DS. He refused to help me tidy the living room this morning, wouldn't get dressed to go out to his phys ed class this afternoon (so he missed it) and this afternoon he got in a fight with DD and shoved her.

I'm tired and under the weather today and feeling totally overwhelmed. I actually said the dreaded words "Maybe we just can't handle homeschooling and you should go back to school next year" to DS when we were fighting. I feel like total crap for putting that out there as I don't believe it at all, but I'm really struggling. I want to be respectful of my kids, but I want them to be respectful of me too. When I'm constantly doing all the work around the house and I get attitude when I ask for five minutes of help, I have a hard time feeling respected.

*sigh*

I can't wait for spring. Somehow it feels like it'll all be better when we can get outside more.

Kim - Wife to Liam , Unschooly mama to Nick (10/00) Lily (09/05) and Olivia (07/09)
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#69 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 09:23 PM
 
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I can't wait for spring. Somehow it feels like it'll all be better when we can get outside more.
*nodding* I'm feeling much better after having got outside two days running. I'm impressed with how much ds is willing to walk if there is an interesting destination. We're acclimating to not having a car most days and ds has never liked walking. He'd still love to be in a stroller. I am afraid he will get tired of the walkable destinations but at least we got out a couple times this week.

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#70 of 152 Old 02-06-2008, 10:03 PM
 
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WEEeeeeelllll....our lives have sure been turned upside down this week. I am in the process of painting our house, and have found out that there is MAJOR mold all throughout the basement (behind bathroom and bedroom walls), and in at least one bedroom upstairs, most of it painted over, or panels placed over the rotted drywall and painted, etc. The attic space in ds room is just black at the one end (not seen by the inspector as they are not required to do destructive testing like taking the access off the wall, although they did look in the ceiling), and he has rot in the wall under the window down to the baseboard and in the corner where his attic space is...I am seeing this as I am removing paint.

As you can guess, I am upset. We are in the process of checking with a lawyer about things, but it is starting to sound like we have little recourse as there was some visible mold in one room in the basement which we knew about (which sounded to us it would be relatively minor to repair) and it is a case of buyer beware. I am toying with the idea of pursuing that they deliberately covered most of this, but we cannot afford to lose a lawsuit. We also cannot affored to repair this in the extent we would need to. I am getting a remediation service to come do an estimate, but I think it would involve doing a roof even, and possibly digging up the basement, etc

You can read my sob story in Frugality and Finances. Basically, we will lose the house I think, either due to bankruptcy or being forced to foreclose, due to our other debts and being unable to fix this...it's not like we can leave this stuff, or went bankrupt because we fixed cosmetic things like the kitchen floor...this remediation HAS to be done. Also, dh with his lung condition/sarcoidosis shouldn't be living here I think, and he definitely cannot work much right now and gets no sick time/unemployment help.

To say I am upset is an understatement. I called in a mental health day to work tonight as I didn't think I could hold myself together there tonight. I really feel my kids are suffering, the tv has babysat them BIG TIME the last few days, and I am really impatient with my dd especially with some of her challenging aspects of her personality (I really believe she would be labelled with SID and she has been diagnosed with auditory processing issues) that I normally am more patient with. My homeschooling the last few days was renting the 1st 3 episodes of the Planet Earth series with dd, and watching it to try and take my mind off of stuff.

Today I had all sorts of stuff going through my head, like if financially what if we were in the position I had to work even more, and put the kids in school. DD would be so far behind in some areas, especially her math skills. It is all I can do to really be "present" with my kids and engaging them right now, trusting in unschooling and seeing/facilitating the learning like I normally do. EEeek, I haven't even sent in my homeschooling notification yet and if they saw the extent of my "homeschooling" they would throw them in school for sure I think. I tell you, with dh illness this year and now this, this is really the last straw!

How have you all handled homeschooling/unschooling in stressful times? Ds does not seem to realize something is wrong, but dd sure does. They have both seen me cry, be angry, impatient, indifferent to them this last week.

Any advice....?

Tina, RN, wife-y to J, mom to dd (10) and ds (7)
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#71 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:19 AM
 
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Oh, Tina! I have no advice but wanted to offer a hug. Call the board of health and ask about abatement. Call home insurance and ask what they offer. Call the building inspector and ask what resources they have. Much luck.

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Stinkerbell - have you looked into museum memberships? Usually the annual membership fee pays for itself after 2 or 3 visits, and most of them have reciprocity with hundreds of other museums around the country. Here in FL we actually bought a membership to the local aquarium, and it already has paid for itself!
We do love museums and thats a great idea!

We did go out and bought a big military fighter jet model. Paint, glue, etc. He's v excited! he helped my 3 year old build a solar system today.
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#72 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:41 AM
 
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So can you make up a game your child didn't ask for & still describe yourself to fellow hsers as an unschooler? Is having an agenda to make a number game not unschooling?
Whether or not one makes up number games doesn't have anything to do with unschooling, imo.


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Or is it still unschooling if the child can walk away or agrees to a game that is described as one of many ways to have fuin with numbers-- and if you present the game by telling the child you don't have any goals about the child and numbers?
I've presented lots of games, both with and without numbers, and never felt the need to announce that I don't have any goals. My kids know I'm not coming from that place, and they know they're free to decline my suggestions. Those are critical pieces to our unschooling.

Quote:
Is pointing out numbers on a menu at a resaturant an agenda? Is pointint out a red light to tell your child it means stop having an agenda to teach that red means stop in a stoplight?
It would depend -- maybe they have an agenda, maybe not. If I was in a restaurant with my child, we'd be discussing the food options and probably lots of other things as well. If prices were a concern, or if they asked, I'd certainly point out the numbers on a menu. What I wouldn't do is see the prices on a menu as an opportunity to teach numbers and pull it out of context in order to get them to recognize their numbers with a mini math lesson at the table. That would feel really forced to me.


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Does having the the parental goal and agenda of wanting a child to love learning and life mean you aren't unschooling?
I've had this discussion here many times. The way I see it is, if I have a goal or agenda for my children then that puts the onus on them to fulfill those goals. I don't think it's my right to set goals for my kids--they set goals for their own lives.

I do wish that they love life, but that's totally different from having an agenda regarding what they will learn.

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#73 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 05:05 AM
 
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I found this tonight online and thought it was a great example of one unschooling family's way to "teach" math!


"My older daughter (11) is a visual learner. She loves to read and draw. My younger daughter (7) is a kinesthetic learner. She enjoys building things and is very active. Teaching them traditional "paper" math was a disaster. They said it was boring, and hated every minute of it. All they really learned was to dislike math!

One interest they both shared was fairies. The girls jumped at the opportunity to build a fairy house with their dad, and my older daughter immediately made a drawing of the future house. They weren't aware they were learning math, as the drawing became a house plan, and there was more measuring to cut the wood. Windows and doors added further math challenges. In figuring out the pitch of the roof, they learned the relationship of the sides of a right triangle. They were so happy with the results, they decided to build several birdhouses -- without our help!

Approached this way, learning isn't a chore. It's part of the whole process of pursuing an enjoyable activity or interest. The visual learner saw her dream become a real (miniature) house. The active learner loved pounding the nails and sawing wood. For us, the math lesson was painless and fun!"

For article in entirety, click here

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#74 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 11:17 AM
 
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How have you all handled homeschooling/unschooling in stressful times? Ds does not seem to realize something is wrong, but dd sure does. They have both seen me cry, be angry, impatient, indifferent to them this last week.

Any advice....?
I'm so sorry you're in that tough position. Have you looked to see if you qualify for any kind of assistance?

I really do think it's OK if our kids see us getting upset at times, and to see that we're not always up to doing what we normally do when we're feeling stressed. How else can they learn how to deal with stress, that it's OK to make mistakes, etc?

Advice? Just do the best you can. You don't have to be "perfect." Don't worry about "failing at homeschooling" or anything silly like that- just focus on what MUST be done each day and have faith that it's going to work out. Even if you end up going to work FT and putting the kids in school, that still wouldn't be the end of the world, and you can deal with that situation if and when you come to it. You can drive yourself crazy worrying about every "what if" right now, and that takes energy away from what you need to do.

Interesting observations about math. We're not 100% unschoolers, and at the beginning of this year DD had requested some formal math instruction. In our state DD needs to take a standardized test at the end of each year, and she didn't feel confident with how she did on the math questions last year. So we have a 6th grade math textbook and we're going through the entire book from the beginning to the end, but skimming over the stuff she already knows, ignoring their "group projects" and other tangents, doing 1 or 2 problems per page instead of all 20, etc.

As we're going through the text, I've found that there are whole chapters that really don't need to be done. Things like reading pie charts and bar graphs- there's actually about 2 weeks' worth of "lesson plans" covering this stuff, and we were able to skim through that whole chapter in about 15 minutes because it's already come up organically through everyday living! It's kind of nice to have that re-assurance that she'd still be fine even if we weren't doing any kind of formal math!



Since this thread is getting big, and gets hard to follow after a few days, maybe we should make a new one ever week instead of every month? It's the 7th now, so maybe somebody should start a new thread tomorrow on the 8th? Or should we hang out til Sunday and make a new thread each week regardless of the day of the month? Or should we stick to monthly threads?

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#75 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 11:49 AM
 
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Canuckgal,

That really sucks about the house.

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Today I had all sorts of stuff going through my head, like if financially what if we were in the position I had to work even more, and put the kids in school...
ikwym. I had a health scare recently, and started to go down that "what if" path. I know it's hard not to do, but it's SUCH a waste of time and energy. I did go there for about a day, thinking of all the worst case scenarios, etc. but finally realized it was more productive (not to mention sanity-preserving!) to take things one step at a time.

I am usually a "big picture" kind of thinker, which works just fine most of the time, but in times of crisis, I'm much calmer if I can focus on one task at a time and purposefully not look too much further. ymmv, of course.

Quote:
How have you all handled homeschooling/unschooling in stressful times? Ds does not seem to realize something is wrong, but dd sure does. They have both seen me cry, be angry, impatient, indifferent to them this last week.

Any advice....?
My kids have always known when something is up. Of course when I've been upset, they've known, but even when I think I've been acting normally. Somehow, they know. I've also learned that it's better to tell them (considering their ages and the extent that they can understand) what's going on. I figure, at the very least, they'll understand that it's not THEM that's making me irritable/sad, whatever, yk?

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#76 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 11:56 AM
 
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I found this tonight online and thought it was a great example of one unschooling family's way to "teach" math!
That sounds like a great project and it seems like the kids really enjoyed it.

I totally agree with this:
Quote:
Approached this way, learning isn't a chore. It's part of the whole process of pursuing an enjoyable activity or interest.
Where I part from my agreement is here:
Quote:
For us, the math lesson was painless and fun!
Where I am in my own journey, I don't even want to think in terms of "math lessons." If we'd done this project 7 years ago, I'm sure I'd be thinking in those terms, but at this point, I'm actively opposed to breaking things down into subjects or lessons. Now, it would just be a fun project.


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Since this thread is getting big, and gets hard to follow after a few days, maybe we should make a new one ever week instead of every month?
Sounds good to me. I'd rather pick a day of the week, rather than count out every seven days, but I'll go along with whatever.

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#77 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:12 PM
 
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[QUOTE=SagMom;10483550]
I've presented lots of games, both with and without numbers, and never felt the need to announce that I don't have any goals. My kids know I'm not coming from that place, and they know they're free to decline my suggestions. Those are critical pieces to our unschooling./QUOTE]

Great conversation!

How does a small child know whether a parent does or doesn't have certain thoughts when interacting with a child, or playing a game at a restaurant, with numbers or not? (I am not talking about "sit here and count!) Is it dangerous to a child if a parents presents information in a way that is not 100% pure. "I am only wanting to have fun, I don't want to teach anything". Does 'wish' or' 'goal ' or parental nature to pass along cultural info keep a child from enjoying the time with the parent? DOes a child know or care that a parent enjoying their child is also pleased that the child seems to be interested in all sorts of information...even numbers learned (accidently) from a menu, fi? If a child learns 2 plus 1 parrots equal 3 parrots from the tequila menu is that excitement to the child tainted if the parents was thinking "I, 2, now 3 parrots!" Clearly a fun game the child is enjoying, but also seemingly with an agenda? Is that simply something an unschool parent would not do? How would a two yr process that a parent doesn't have intention of teaching what 2 is or what a parrot is, or if red in a stoplight means go or speed up, or know that his cat is a Siamese?

Isn't introducing children to the world (even of numbers), and passing along, quite intentionally, certain information simply a natural part of what parents do?
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#78 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:32 PM
 
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How does a small child know whether a parent does or doesn't have certain thought playing a game, with numbers or not.
I think kids can pretty easily assess a parent's intention. I've seen parents ask their children to sing the abc song for an audience. The audience then smiles and claps and makes a big deal over how smart the toddler is. That makes it pretty obvious to the child that singing that song is something the adults want the child to do and something that they'll get loads of attention and approval for doing.

I've recently had this discussion irl: When a parent says, "We're currently using X program and my dc really enjoys it." Is it that the child would rather be doing X program than anything else in the world? Or is it that the parent has made it clear that she values the program and the child wants to do it to please the parent? If the child gets praise and approval for completing certain tasks, how do we know if the child is completing them out of joy for the work or because they desire praise and approval from the parent?


Quote:
Most cultures understand that introducing their children to the world and certain information is part of what parents do. Unschooling is one thing, respect is one thing, but does actually having no goals to have one's offspring function well in the world (Is that a 'goal' is it a 'wish'?) go against that basic intstinct?
Who's talking about not wanting their children to be able to function in the world? Introducing things to children is very different from having the idea that a child "should" know certain information and then finding ways to make the child learn that information regardless of whether or not the child is interested or ready for it.

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#79 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:37 PM
 
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:

Interesting observations about math. We're not 100% unschoolers, and at the beginning of this year DD had requested some formal math instruction. In our state DD needs to take a standardized test at the end of each year, and she didn't feel confident with how she did on the math questions last year. So we have a 6th grade math textbook and we're going through the entire book from the beginning to the end, but skimming over the stuff she already knows, ignoring their "group projects" and other tangents, doing 1 or 2 problems per page instead of all 20, etc.
My dd is wanting to take the PSAT and SAT soon and she is using a math program to learn how to work through test problems -- the steps to do them, showing work etc. At this point, practicing the particular ways to find answers goes beyond setting the table or playing monopoly. I know going to college is something she is seriously consdiering, so it's not my agenda, although I do value the college option and she does know that. I can't say I disagree with her choice to keep her future life options open. Did my wish for her to consider keeping her future life options open play a part in her wanting to be able to understand SAT level math? I'm sure.

We are also aware some unis do not require SAT scores.
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#80 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:41 PM
 
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I think kids can pretty easily assess a parent's intention. I've seen parents ask their children to sing the abc song for an audience. The audience then smiles and claps and makes a big deal over how smart the toddler is. That makes it pretty obvious to the child that singing that song is something the adults want the child to do and something that they'll get loads of attention and approval for doing.
.
My questions went beyond this--it got clipped here. I don't mean agenda for dog and pony tricks, or the parent forcing the child to stay while they play. Check it out again, as I am really curious.
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#81 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:41 PM - Thread Starter
 
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The thing is, I think math stuff IS fun.

For instance, DD and I like to play games when waiting for food to arrive in restaurants. One game she made up is this: one person says, "I'm thinking of a number between 1 and 100 and it's even..." You can add more like, "it's a multiple of three" or whatever. We do this because it's fun. Some secret part of me realizes that, on the outside, this looks "educational." But that isn't the reason we play the game.

And to answer an earlier question, yes, I make up games and present them to DD and if she wants to play, sure, we play. If not, no. I bought a book called Games for Math and sometimes we drag it out when we are bored. But she could just as easily drag out something "less educational" and it would be the same. I don't place more importance on a "math game" than I would on anything else. (One reason is that I think it's hard to isolate a subject in real life...fun things could involve math, science, literature...all in one)
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#82 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 12:50 PM
 
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Karaboo,
Alesandra is actually my daughters middle name also, but it is what she goes by. I didn't realize Alessandra was the Italian version until after I had named her that. We have alot of Alexandra's and Alexanders and Alejandro's in our family and I just thought changing the x to an s made it sound nice. Many Latino's are starting to drop the j's for s's these days, so soon it will be both the italian and the latino version.
I should read the Agony and the Ecstacy.
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#83 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:00 PM
 
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Who's talking about not wanting their children to be able to function in the world? Introducing things to children is very different from having the idea that a child "should" know certain information and then finding ways to make the child learn that information regardless of whether or not the child is interested or ready for it.
I am thinking that wanting a child to funcioton in the world is having an agenda, or no? Don't most parents intentionally go about helping the child aquire the information they need to function well.

Is the child playing a math game "1, 2 3 parrots!' and all that interested in math because the parent is happily involved in the game? Is the child's enjoyment or interest lessened if the parent waiting for her Marguartia is thinking about counting and understanding numbers as something she wants her child to learn? Is the parrot counting a fun and painless 'math leasson'? If it is, does that taint the information for the child?

Understand, I am not talking about finding ways to 'make' a child learn information he's not interested in. I'm talking about goals/agendas/wishes and how they relate to information that we present to our children. I'm talking about ways we pass along information we think is important to be able function in a particular society or culture.

Would the parrot game be ok at the resturant because it 'just happned' as opposed to that same parent going home and making up math games because she thinks the child enjoys math, as shown by the parrot example? Would playing number games (made up, or domnioes or mancala etc) with a wish for the child to understand numbers be what crosses the line from unschooling to another kind of hsing?
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#84 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:04 PM
 
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There are a lot of gray, fuzzy lines here. Of course it's OK for parents to introduce new concept to their children, to have educational resources around for the child to explore, to teach their children about the world and to be excited when they develop new skills.

Where does it cross the line from "facilitating learning" to "teaching"? It probably varies from one family to another. I personally am much more concerned with "what works for my family" than "does this count as unschooling?"

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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#85 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:05 PM
 
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My questions went beyond this--it got clipped here. I don't mean agenda for dog and pony tricks, or the parent forcing the child to stay while they play. Check it out again, as I am really curious.
Unless I'm not understanding your question, my answer is the same. Using the abc song was a dramatically obvious example of a child knowing the parent's agenda, but I think it applies to other things as well.

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Is it dangerous to a child if a parents presents information in a way that is not 100% pure. "I am only wanting to have fun, I don't want to teach anything".
Dangerous? No. But I'd prefer to share information because I enjoy it or I think my kids might enjoy it rather than because I want to make sure they learn some particular piece of information.

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Does 'wish' or' 'goal ' or parental nature to pass along cultural info keep a child from enjoying the time with the parent?
Maybe, maybe not. If the parent's wish or goal is overriding what the child wants to do at that moment, I can see them not enjoying that time together.

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If a child learns 2 plus 1 parrots equal 3 parrots from the tequila menu is that excitement to the child tainted if the parents was thinking "I, 2, now 3 parrots!" Clearly a fun game the child is enjoying, but also seemingly with an agenda?
Maybe it's just a fun game. Again, I think it depends on how the child views it. Is the child playing because he wants to or because he knows it's something the parent wants him to do?

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Is that simply something an unschool parent would not do?
I don't know. I've misplaced my rule book. As I've said, *I* would not think in terms of "I want my dc to learn this, let me make up a game/lesson etc. in order to get them to learn it."

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How would a two yr process that a parent doesn't have intention of teaching what 2 is or what a parrot is, or if red in a stoplight means go or speed up, or know that his cat is a Siamese?
I don't know that they would recognize the intention, at 2y/o. But they would certainly learn that knowing what a parrot is, or knowing that red means stop or that their cat is Siamese is important to their PARENTS. Which raises the question: Did the child learn what a parrot is because they are so very interested in birds, or because they gained approval from their parents by knowing this information?

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#86 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:12 PM
 
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There are a lot of gray, fuzzy lines here. Of course it's OK for parents to introduce new concept to their children, to have educational resources around for the child to explore, to teach their children about the world and to be excited when they develop new skills.

Where does it cross the line from "facilitating learning" to "teaching"? It probably varies from one family to another. I personally am much more concerned with "what works for my family" than "does this count as unschooling?"

My greatest concern in hsing is my family and what works for us. But I love the discussions of what others are thinking. If I didn't love the discussions, I'd have a much cleaner house.
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#87 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:19 PM
 
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I
means stop or that their cat is Siamese is important to their PARENTS. Which raises the question: Did the child learn what a parrot is because they are so very interested in birds, or because they gained approval from their parents by knowing this information?
So is it never too early to say, "Hey, I love parrots, but you don't have to love parrots, but can I talk about parrots with you". Seems affected and perhaps confusing to a small child.... but checking the ego is not a bad idea.

Children want postive parental attention, small children do want to please, so I am positive children do learn some things because of that. Parental withholding of pleasure to manipulate is wrong, but is the child's joy or self hood diminished if the parent is also pleased that a child is interested in something that interests them as well?
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#88 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:20 PM
 
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I am thinking that wanting a child to funcioton in the world is having an agenda, or no?
I don't think so. I want my children to continue to breathe. Does that mean that I have an agenda? When I'm talking about "agendas" here, I mean educational agendas.

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Don't most parents intentionally go about helping the child aquire the information they need to function well...
...I'm talking about goals/agendas/wishes and how they relate to information that we present to our children. I'm talking about ways we pass along information we think is important to be able function in a particular society or culture.
I think much depends on the child's perception. If a parent were to say, "I think it's very important that you learn to write in script." Would the dc consider that information and decide for themselves if they feel it's important? Would they take the parents' advice as law? Would they take the parents' advice because they don't want to disappoint the parent? A lot of this goes to the relationship between the parent and child as well as the child's level of confidence, I think.

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Would playing number games (made up, or domnioes or mancala etc) with a wish for the child to understand numbers be what crosses the line from unschooling to another kind of hsing?
I don't know. I'd rather just play number games because they're fun, rather than because numbers are important to understand. If something is useful then they will learn it for a purpose.

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#89 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:25 PM
 
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"Is the child playing a math game "1, 2 3 parrots!' and all that interested in math because the parent is happily involved in the game? Is the child's enjoyment or interest lessened if the parent waiting for her Marguartia is thinking about counting and understanding numbers as something she wants her child to learn? Is the parrot counting a fun and painless 'math leasson'? If it is, does that taint the information for the child?" by SagMom

Admittedly I am an ambivalent unschooler, which may be the worse of both worlds, but I do find myself with an agenda. dd will be playing the game because mom is having fun playing it with her, but realistically is that game how I would choose to spend my time if I didn't have the agenda for MYSELF to do things that will expose her to information and skills that I value for her. I certainly wouldn't spend all the hours playing the Made for Trade game that I found and picked for her if she wasn't thrilled with it begging me to play it with her.
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#90 of 152 Old 02-07-2008, 01:30 PM
 
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Parental withholding of pleasure to manipulate is wrong, but is the child's joy or self hood diminished if the parent is also pleased that a child is interested in something that interests them as well?
I think it's one thing to recognize that you share common interests and are happy about that. And it's another thing if a child does something or shows an interest in something simply BECAUSE it pleases the parent.

I'm sure the line is a fine one. Eh, I'm not even sure where the line is.

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