Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Unschooling for the Skeptics

I have found an ingenious way to unschool, all while keeping my husband's nerves at bay so I wanted to share. If you print the content standards for your state for each child for each subject and keep them in a folder, you can mark off each subject throughout the year as you complete life completes them. Its good because you can glance at them maybe once a week and know what is still missing and try and find innovative ways to entice your kids into finishing off these standards. It is the only way to keep Nate's reservations at bay with unschooling so I do it. Its actually nice in my own mind as well though to know that they are getting an education up to standard even without a standardized curriculum. Its hard though because the last thing an unschooler wants to do is measure their child up to other "public schooled peers." I don't do this, but my husband is prior military and now a cop so his nature is to have order in life so I must appease him in this as his helpmeet. I do think as years wear on, he will understand the beauty of no standards to measure against though. I always remember though that things can be done naturally and as part of life and try to make things flow with life, with a little nudge or excitement here or there to make sure certain things get done. As a parent, it is my duty to make sure my kids do get a fulfilled education as much as I do love unschooling and we still do it. I still consider this unschooling because I wouldn't make it boring, regular curriculum and I wouldn't do anything extreme to meet standards. I just do my best to pick these standards out of real life or create opportunities for these standards to be somewhat met. Just an idea for those trying to appease a skeptic! :)


Sankat said...

That is a great idea....even for regular homeschoolers

I have printed off the standards for my state several times (mostly while in college)...that is A LOT of paper!!! (even for just one grade). I hope you were able to print on both sides of the paper and you didn't run out of ink :D

Stacey said...

Where do you find the education standards for each state? When I google Nebraska Education Standards I get all kinds of weird links.


lilpeasinmypodfrom~God said...

THey should be on your states dept of education website.
Kat, Ca's werent that long?? How are you girlie? Arent you preggs? When are you due?

Heidi said...

I do this to! I have a 3 ring binder and just some columns with all the kids names and when the kids meet one I mark it off...i have all the prek-1st/2nd standards printed off and its interesting to see areas that A is ahead of C and vis versa even though they are different ages. We don't strictly unschool, but we def lean towards unschooling over rigorously structured learning. This approach allows us to celebrate each child where they are at, while still keeping an eye on the types of things that are expected of children their age. It also helps me see when I might not be asking ENOUGH of them (which does happen....we underestimate what our kiddos can do at times)

Anyways, thanks for posting this idea. Hopefully others will take you up on the idea!

Sankat said...

That is great CA didn't have to much. I live in AZ and it seems like A LOT to me.
I am doing ok. Yeah I am preg. and due Aug 31st. I have been getting a lot of contractions lately and so I am not doing much at all..just waiting for the next month so the baby can really come.