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unschooling

A Story from the Trenches »

In the road less traveled criticism hurts because I’m still walking blindly, finding my way as I go, and there’s no promise of a happy ending. Thank God for the messages that come to support me and assure me: I’m not alone.

What does he learn at home? »

In defense of self-directed learning at home, this is a sample of the life skills and functional abilities my eight-year-old is acquiring while pursuing his interests.

I hope que no me jodas! »

Talking with Kiki about school, college, work, and the need he will feel some day to be free from his parents and pursue and independent life.

Lately Joaquin (7.5 years) »

Bowling, basketball, hincha furibundo, Calvin & Hobbes, financial ambition, learning from movies, arcade fan, new interests, abilities, questions, and ways to express himself.

An Unschooled Life: Learning Does Creep In »

Sometimes I worry, and then I get evidence that learning is inevitable and it develops in meaningful and memorable stories tied to real experiences from life.

Tis the season to be sewing »

This winter I went on a streak of sewn product making which Kiki joined. We created a nice collection of currently needed items and handmade repurposed goods.

Are we still doing okay? »

Observations and fear as we started transitioning from four years of Son-Rise and my attuned “Eye of Mordor” towards life without a social development program.

Letting Go »

Letting myself to do my project instead of seeking to nurture Joaquin’s development brings up fear. But John Holt reminds me: “It’s okay; keep trusting”.

Land for the Man »

Child of Fire saw me working on the backyard project and has decided that he wants to make his own construction. Horay for our life of self-directed learning!

He swims! »

He said “This is the day in which I am going to swim!”… and he did!

Reading v.2 »

At 6 years old Joaquin can read though he hates it, but the last three weeks his motivation for reading and comprehension was on. He just finished his first book.

Swimming Update »

After eight lessons of formal instruction – or, as formal as it could be with this child– Joaquin is now teaching himself how to swim. During his lessons we were fortunate to have Nanette, his most recurring instructor. As soon as she learned from me about Joaquin’s learning process and sensory sensitivities (I didn’t want […]

Nurturing Conscious Independence »

Two weeks ago, Joaquin decided that he wants to be the chef of our home; he wants to make his own lunch, his own way. I decided to support his independence with some structure: Only one time a week, he can make his own “rogue” lunch. I make my own with him. I deal with […]

The Road Trip »

I just returned from “Radical Authenticity” at The Option Institute (expansive beyond my expectations), and Kiki is working on a virtual road trip via Google maps from our home to the institute at Sheffield, MA . I’m loving the project and finding a number of learning opportunities and differences for him to perceive. I got […]

Projects and Passions: April 2014 »

01. A mural for animation With the filmmaking and animation motivations still alive, I offered Joaquin the idea to draw a long strip of landscape we could scroll in order to create the illusion of movement in a train. He got passionately into it, and surprisingly traded his beloved hour of computer time to draw. […]

“Leon”, a Filmmaking Project »

As the time for vocal exercises started to approach its end, and with an emerging motivation for animated Disney films, I noticed that Joaquin was using my computer to record his own movies. It was so exciting!… Completely spontaneously, he’d impersonate characters and record himself with PhotoBooth, and he’d even bring costume props to enhance […]

A Book Collection by “Harey” »

Joaquin’s newest passion is to write illustrated STORIES (whoo hoo!). He started a few days ago, and as I’ve added variations, it’s become a new favorite activity for him. I love his illustrations. They’re 3-dimensional and so expressive. This is “The boy who recharged his batteries” (we often talk about me needing solo time to […]

Unschooling Snippets »

A sampler of the topics Kiki and I have discussed in “homeschooling time” since its recent inception. Topics are always inspired by our conversations during lunch and the themes that populate his mind that day. Reading through this list makes me smile; I’m not afraid of talking “unsavory” topics with Joaquin; no taboos; he’s so […]