Monday, October 2, 2006

MSNBC article A new chapter in education: unschooling

Quotes are from the article which is here.
Comments are by Sandra Dodd.

"Controversial home-taught approach lets kids take the lead in learning"
That was the subtitle of the article, which probably came from the editor of the site, and not from Victoria Clayton, the writer. It doesn't make any sense in the "home-taught approach" part, and as to kids "taking the lead," it clearly implies that either the parent "takes the lead" or the child "takes the lead," thereby ignoring how unschooling works.

"But not all unschoolers stick to the plan so religiously."
That followed on a bit about a five year old who had just recently started to read, as though she had had a plan and stuck to it.

A quote from a professor:
“If the parents are highly educated and/or from a higher socioeconomic level, the kids are going to get all kinds of rich experiences because the nature of the home is going to be about books, experiences, education and learning,” says Myron Dembo, a University of Southern California professor of education.
It's possible articles misquote professors as easily as they misquote unschooling parents, but the mention of "education" in that list didn't show very clear thinking, and the fact that he named "experiences" and "learning" shows, again, an ignorance of the very basis of unschooling.

Unschooling isn't easy to understand, even for those who work at it, with children, for months. Those who do get it are enthusiastic. I have yet to see a reporter really get it, even those who spend weeks hanging out with a family.