Friday, July 31, 2015

Own your own

If parents retain ownership of their children's learning, the children cannot learn on their own. photo DSC09570.jpg
SandraDodd.com/parentalauthority
photo by Sandra Dodd

Thursday, July 30, 2015

"Electric in my memory"

"I saw SO MUCH MORE learning happen because I was watching so closely. It was like a big curtain was lifted that had been preventing me from seeing clearly. photo DSC09227.jpg When I think back today about that moment, it feels like THAT was the real beginning of unschooling for me. It still feels electric in my memory—all the connections I made that day about learning and its value to the learner within the place and time it is learned. I am so grateful for Learn Nothing Day."
—Karen Angstadt

(Longer version here.)
photo by Sandra Dodd

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Self-awareness

 photo DSC02441.jpgParents get pretty good at noticing when a child is tired, hungry or frustrated. It's important to see those things in yourself. Keep your family safe from your more dangerous moods and states. If you're too hungry or too tired to be kind and safe, ask for help. Or admit you're feeling stressed, and be more careful. Don't use your mood as an excuse to be harsh or dangerous. Learn to do what you need to do to stay in a workable, safe zone.
SandraDodd.com/mentalhealth
photo by Sandra Dodd

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Signs and other excitement

A mom once wrote:
We left the house and headed to the subway, (we live in Manhattan). On the way there, Logan spotted a number of street signs. He commented on their shapes and colors, he gets very excited by this. We got to the subway, and he said we were taking the "A" train, so we sang the song together. At 14th Street there is an elevator to get out of the subway, so he talked about going up and down. We were headed downtown to a really fun water playground. He had a blast playing in the water, filling up a cup and spilling it out. He also practiced his climbing to get to the big curly slide. Logan also got to socialize with lots of kids of many different ages. Sometimes that takes some negotiating...he's learning. After a few hours we headed back home.

When we got off of the train, Logan wanted to go to Central Park, which we call our back yard. There is a small lake near us, and he loves to look at the ducks. We watched the ducks; he counted sticks and threw them in the water, looked at trees, flowers and squirrels. Sometimes we see Raccoons too. As an added bonus, there was a troop of actors performing Shakespeare. There was sword fighting, so Logan wanted to watch the show.
. . . .
I never had this much fun, or got so much out of a day in school.

—Meryl, Logan's mom
SandraDodd.com/day/meryl
photo by Sandra Dodd, of a sign in Austin, not Manhatten

Monday, July 27, 2015

See them looking

 photo IMG_6951.jpeg If we wait to see where a child's gaze falls, and wait a while for a question or comment to form, our observation and readiness to assist if needed, or to converse casually will be better than any pre-scripted lesson could ever be. It will be personal, and real, and at exactly the right moment.

SandraDodd.com/wonder
photo by Chrissy Florence

Sunday, July 26, 2015

History

 photo DSC00776.jpgMuseums and historical markers can be fun, but most of the history around us is unmarked and undocumented.

Every little bit of trivia gives you a hook to hang more history on.
SandraDodd.com/history
photo by Sandra Dodd

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Looking at our real kids

"For unschooling to flourish it means taking out our fears and examining them. It means looking at unschooled children to find out what really happens rather than what seems like would happen (from knowledge of schooled, controlled kids). It means shutting off the expert voices that tell parents what they should be seeing and looking at our real kids."
–Joyce Fetteroll
 photo DSC01225.jpg
SandraDodd.com/fears
photo by Sandra Dodd
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