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Unschooling Is Convincing!

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GDP aside...,public school systems across the nation are failing students and their families, yet these families, for the most part, continue to place trust in the system. I venture to suggest it is because they are bound to the failing system, because they may be afraid of that which is different and pursuing the knowledge to further understand the fact that they have choice is not something they learned in school. Throwing money at education is moot. America, like other countries, has choice...you just have to discover it.

The greater masses of American society live in fear of free thought, ideas and words that go against the mainstream. These are the Americans who make statements like, "We have to work." "We don't have the luxury of homeschooling our children." "We homeschool every night with our child when he brings his homework from school." These are the Americans who believe their statements are fact. Unfortunately, these are the Americans who have been indoctrinated by institutionalized thought, repeating what they are told. And they are good at it. And they are passionate. But they are close minded.

Noam Chomsky, a renowned linguist and philosopher, also known for his criticisms for contemporary capitalism (I know my research), suggests the age old argument regarding 'what constitutes the best learning environment' as a "quest for inquiry." Dale, you have started your quest and you are spreading your discoveries to others. I know you recognize the fact that you may be shunned by the faction of those who believe in the indoctrination process indicative of American public school systems...and my favorite idea to suggest to these folks is, "Perhaps if you spent more time with your own children, you would discover the importance of prioritizing the idea that your child's mind is worth more than a day spent at work." Obviously something your parents did for you to some degree.

I am an advocate of homeschooling, because I spent over a decade in classrooms for indoctrination as a student, a teacher, and an administrator. It wasn't until my own son was born that I realized a child is the most precious gift God gives man and nothing will forsake the attention and love he deserves. That attention and love comes with coveting a world of inquiry and play, for him to experience, ponder, and make judgements for on his own. No classroom or mainstream school of thought can give him these opportunities. No classroom or mainstream school of thought can come close to giving my child the individualized attention he deserves to grow his brain, his thoughts, his judgments. Thank goodness for America that she allows us to each have a voice.

Sabrina Albrecht
Mom, Educator at Home

Mom of 3 in New Jersey; 1 in college, 1 in high school, 1 in elementary

Not very convincing

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Sorry, Dale, but generalizing based on your own personal life experience isn't very convincing. That's going to be true for anything, from education to politics, or anything else.

I'm glad that "homeschooling" worked for you and for so many others. Anecdotes abound. So do the obvious tradeoffs and limitations. Homeschooling wouldn't work for everyone; believe it or not, some parents have to work and make money during the day. Some parents don't have the ability or the skills or the focus or the patience to be both parent and teacher, full-time.

Schooling at home goes on in our house every day---and in almost every other home. It supports, augments and extends what is learned in our child's school. And it involves all of life, from the formal lessons, books, discussions, to the personal experiences dealing with friendships, love, and general curiosity about life and existence.

So, bully for you. But I'm not sure what we're supposed to take from your post. I continue to think that the school my children attend is a vital feature of our community. It ties our families together and reinforces the idea that we're not out there all alone. We love and support each other by pooling our resources and working with the teachers in our school to provide the best opportunities and experiences for our kids; not just to prepare them for "their future careers" and "ability to maximize their earnings as adults", but to make their experience DURING childhood, AS children, as good as it can be.

FYI...did homeschooling and "UnCollege" include statistics and data analysis? I wonder given what you wrote here: "And if you look at how America and Finland compare on GDP per capita, the results may surprise you: America is in seventh place with $46,869 and Finland is in 22nd place with $34,918."

Interesting. However, did you also take the time to look at how GDP per capita was DISTRIBUTED in Finland, as opposed to the United States? (For instance, Guatemala and Iceland have roughly equivalent GDP per capita, but a 15 minute visit to either country will make it clear that the distribution of that wealth is vastly different in those two nations.)

In the USA, GDP per capita is vastly unequal, with the top 1% of the country having almost 40% of the national wealth. In Finland, the gap between the very richest and the very poorest is relatively small compared to the United States. Every citizen in Finland is provided with excellent health care, 8 weeks vacation, universal daycare, a retirement with dignity, excellent schools at little or no cost---including college, job security, solid infrastructure, low crime rate, and a very healthy business climate. The same, sadly, can't be said for the United States.

The GDP per capita is significantly less in Finland, but everyone gets a good piece of it, as opposed to the US, where a small number of people hog as much as they can get, leaving a vast number of people with little or nothing---in education or anything else.

Ask a wealthy person if they want their kid going to a school with 40 kids in a class, taught by teachers right out of college, with nothing but a "Boot Camp" for preparation. And in this school, their kids will spend most of their time focused on preparing for tests that will determine how much money their school receives and the future of their child and her teachers. And if they say "NO", ask them why they'd advocate exactly that for people who have less money?

That was a great speech, it

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That was a great speech, it was very interesting and exciting to watch it! Thank you very much for this post and the video, that was so great to get to know all this! The video was so great I recorder it with free screen recorder http://freescreenrecorder.net/

Homeschooling

Right On!!!

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Good!!

Homeschooling

Right On!!!

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Fantastic article. I knew this was comming. I have been homeschooling my children (4th and 6th grade) for three years now. This has proven to be an outstanding learning experience, not only for my kids but for me. I am a B.S. in Chemistry- no education credits. Nonetheless I am an avid reader and an autodidact on the subjects of psychology, teaching models, curriculums,and education matters around the world especially in the subjects of Math and Science. I would like to contribute with my local education department when I finish my kid's education. I see that in order to do this I will have to make some unconventional calls because all public job posts require a "degree in education". So I was figuring out that there must be a lot of people like me who happen to learn by themselves and who establish their own standards based on knowledge, and that in the future companies, governments, etc. must wake up and require that people prove that they know what they will be working with instead of just presenting a diploma from an institution.

Nice job challenging

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Nice job challenging "popular" thinking. Looking closely at what we would be reasonable to expect from college, versus simply accepting it as a cultural construct, is a good first step.

I wrote a short post about it here: http://www.teachthought.com/?p=1875

The real boon will materialize when parents and families are asking these questions, not educators.

Thanks for sharing!

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