There were two (always optional) questions for this edition.
(#1) Use the letters U-N-S-C-H-O-O-L to write about unschooling. Use what ever method you want, for example you can use each letter like "U is for...N is for.."or you can have each letter start a new sentence or paragraph or try writing an acronym.
(#2) A topic that comes up on the unschooling e-mail groups a lot is TV/computer/video games and how hard it is for parents to let go of control in those areas. What has been your experience?
This month we had 13 participants and 19 submissions. Welcome to the new bloggers! :-)
As you click the links that take you to the different blogs and sites, I encourage you to comment on the ones that you particularly enjoy (tell 'em we sent ya!) or maybe offer some words of wisdom to someone at an unschooling crossroads. As you read, keep in mind that everyone who participated is at a different place in their unschooling journey.
Schuyler starts us off with an insightful post about why quitting doesn't mean failing. She says "I can remember clearly being asked if I wanted to be a quitter. I didn't then, but I'm absolutely fine with it now. If I didn't quit things I wouldn't have time for all of the amazing things my life is full of in this moment".
Here's a two part post from Cindy where she shares an honest look at her sons first experience with formal education with a community college program and what it did for her own unschooling journey. I especially like this part "My job is to trust the process while stretching the thoughts and reactions that society's expectations for this age at this stage in this generation face".
Next is a post I enjoyed so much that I asked Holly to submit it here. It's an excerpt from a letter she wrote to the superintendent of her school district after resigning from her job as a high school teacher, which explains why she decided to unschool.
One of the questions this month was about screen time (tv/computer/movies/ videos) and why this seems to be one of the hardest areas for a lot of unschooling parents to let go control of.
Robin's submission touched on a lot of my own thoughts and I find that this statement from her post"...because we have a relationship based on mutual trust and respect, instead of power and control, they trust our opinions..." speaks volumes about the unschooling lifestyle.
Tracy submitted a post on television, that speaks for a lot of us at one point or another on our unschooling journey. She had this to say "Though I've long considered myself an unschooler, letting go of restrictions on television time was something I really struggled with. It took me a while to understand that by putting restrictions and guidelines on television, I was increasing its value... something like a scarce resource that had to be taken advantage of while it was available".
Here's Laura's post on letting go of media control. I especially liked this part "It does take trust. But I completely trust my children. I know that they will learn what they need to know when they need it. I’m just here to facilitate that journey. Oh, and learn a whole lot on the way!"
Another voice on this topic is Cher. She ends her post with this; "They’re all tools, waiting to be used, to be explored, to be delved into. Kids don’t need controls on them, they need help using them and being adept at using them, and they need a guiding, honest hand. Like apprentice carpenters who need help learning how to use the tools of their trade; the hammers and nails and saws and drills and more, kids need the same help using the tools of their trades. Not restrictions or controls, but a guiding hand'.
Melissa sent in two posts....the first is about "how unschooling the TV brought algebra into Josh's life". I found this post very familiar because my eight year old daughter wants to learn algebra after watching Apollo 13. The second is a great list (I'm a list lover!) of what children can learn from video games. Don't forget to take her poll at the bottom of the post.
Schuyler also adds her second post this edition on this topic. She says it's "a history of my life with video games. It includes a bit on overcoming a fear of them and fully embracing a life that includes dancing and laughing and rolling up the sun and pairing up with Goofy and Donald to save the universe from Organization XIII". (I'm lovin' the visual on that!)
Dayna Martin starts off our word play with an acronym she and her family came up with.
U - Unaccepting
N - Nonsense
S - School
C - Could
H - Have
O - On
O - Our
L - Lives
I lifted Schuyler's off her video post because I thought it was fantastic.
U - Unschooling,
N - Not
S - Schooling
C - Can
H - Help
O - Overcome
O - Obstacles
L - (to) Learning
The prize for the most creative post goes to Mandy. She submitted a picture of a page from her daughter's altered book that she did the word play on. Great job on the book! I'm looking forward to seeing the one for your other daughter. Also, thanks to Mandy, we now have our own Unschooling Voices flickr tag which will come in handy for the next edition.
Also check out Kim's, Melissa's, Cher's and mine. If anybody else wants to take a shot at it, send it in and I'll include it next month. It was kinda fun doing it. :-)
This submission from Allan is not particularly about unschooling, but posts that speak about the ramifications of school may help someone who is thinking about removing their children.
If you post a link to this months installment on your blog or site, please let me know (by leaving a comment here) so I can thank you with a link back. :-)
Please note: The main page for UV has been moved. Please update your bookmarks. Unschooling Voices
The next edition of Unschooling Voices will be out on May 1st. If you'd like to participate, click the Unschooling Voices main page for details. The new (and always optional) question for the month, plus past editions, can also be found there.
I wanted to create a blog-ring for those of us who participate in Unschooling Voices, but haven't made the time. Until I do, please add your unschooling blog (or website) to the Unschooling Squidoo Lens. It's been steadily moving up the ranks and starting to get a lot of visits from people wanting more information and understanding about unschooling. These "lens" (as squidoo calls them) were created to be a jumping off point for people new to a particular topic. Theres spots for you to add unschooling blogs, websites, etc and add your thoughts on unschooling. If you have trouble adding it, post here and I'll do it for you.
Until next month. :-)
Related Tags: unschooling, unschooling voices, unschool, unschoolers, unschooling carnival