Childism Hurts Everyone (whether they know it or not)

See the world as if for the first time; see it through the eyes of a child, and you will suddenly find that you are free. ~Deepak Chopra

See the world as if for the first time; see it through the eyes of a child, and you will suddenly find that you are free.
~Deepak Chopra

From my latest installment of Living With Wild Abandon, posted on Everything-Voluntary.com:

“In our crazy, busy, stressed-out world, more of us are finding that we need to slow down and connect with the truly important things in life. It’s easy for life to become a blur, to get stuck in a rut, to lose touch with our values and forget to see the wonderful-ness in the world around us. I think including and connecting with kids again is likely to do everyone more good than we can even imagine.

I am heartened each time I see someone like the grandmother from last week, taking the time and energy to enjoy and appreciate the small moments with children. More and more people seem to be embracing a new way of living with children every day, and I am hopeful and grateful for each and every one.”

Read the rest here.

Freedom of thought, part 2

Freedom of thought, part 2

If we take from someone his right to decide what he will be curious about, we destroy his freedom of thought. We say, in effect, you must think about not what interests and concerns you, but about what interests and concerns us.

-John Holt

This is what messes people up in life

This is what messes people up in life.

There were no sex classes. No friendship classes. No classes on how to navigate a bureaucracy, build an organization, raise money, create a database, buy a house, love a child, spot a scam, talk someone out of suicide, or figure out what was important to me. Not knowing how to do these things is what messes people up in life, not whether they know algebra or can analyze literature.

-William Upski Wimsatt

Childhood is not preparation for life

Childhood is not preparation for life

When we adults think of children there is a simple truth that we ignore: childhood is not preparation for life; childhood is life. A child isn’t getting ready to live; a child is living. No child will miss the zest and joy of living unless these are denied by adults who have convinced themselves that childhood is a period of preparation. How much heartache we would save ourselves if we would recognize children as partners with adults in the process of living, rather than always viewing them as apprentices. How much we could teach each other; we have the experience and they have the freshness. How full both our lives could be.

-John A. Taylor

Freedom of thought

Freedom of thought

A person’s freedom of learning is part of his freedom of thought, even more basic than his freedom of speech. If we take from someone his right to decide what he will be curious about, we destroy his freedom of thought.

-John Holt

Educated in freedom

Educated in freedom

A free society must be educated in freedom, not schooled in captivity.

Whatever education is…

Education, not schooling

Education, not schooling

 

“Whatever education is, one thing is certain: It doesn’t take place locked in seats following the commands of total strangers, your obedience measured regularly by short answer tests. And it’s education we need to meet the future, not schooling.”

-John Taylor Gatto

Unschooling Isn’t All About the Kids

businessoflife

My latest column for Everything-Voluntary (EVC):

“The real question isn’t whether unschooling “works” to instill in children qualities or habits that will result in “successful” adults (whatever that even means). No parenting style is a surefire way to ensure a predictable outcome. Instead of focusing on the adults that children will become (which we are truly powerless to control or predict), let’s focus on connectedness and joy in the experience. Let’s leave ourselves and our children plenty of room to grow, expand, and change. Let’s find ways of exploring and enjoying the world, together, and let’s realize that it’s not just our kids’ experiences of this part of life that is important. We’re living our lives too, and our experiences matter and bear influence on both our children and the other people around us. We can never know what the future may hold for either ourselves or our children, or where, good or bad, either of our paths may lead. We can hope to make a positive contribution to our children’s lives, but we can never really know for sure. We can make the choice to embrace joy in our journey together, and increase the amount of happiness in the world. How will it work out in the end? Your guess is as good as mine, but given the choice, I’ll choose happiness as a journey rather than as a destination, and see where it leads.

Can you imagine what it would be like to live in a world full of happy people? Personally, I think following your bliss, engaging with your loved ones and passions and enjoying the moment is one of the best things you could model. Will it create kids who grow up to follow in your footsteps? Potentially. Then again, maybe not.

YMMV. And that’s the way it should be. ”

Unschooling Isn’t All About the Kids

Welcome to my inaugural post! Please hold your applause until the end…

What passes for education...

What passes for education…

So this is my obligatory blog. I intend for it to serve as a virtual home for my musings, graphics and random relevant tidbits from around the interwebz, as blogs are wont to do. It will likely be updated erratically, whenever the mood strikes. Poke around, join the conversation, let your iconoclⒶ stic colors fly! Have fun, get dirty, play nice! It’s been lovely meeting you. I’m sure we’ll see each other soon. If you’re interested in checking in with me more frequently, come join me on my Facebook page!

Love,

The IconoclⒶ stic Unschooler

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