Thursday, June 24, 2021

Take a break (not yet; soon)

Here's a way to gauge your unschooling progress: Can you stop learning, at your house? Can you put the pause on unschooling?

Once a year, lots of people do that, as well as they can. Just one day. It's coming up next month, July 24.

I thought you might need some time to plan.

I used to own a full-sized poster of that art, but now it's in a better place—with an unschooling family in Utah.

Learn Nothing Day, in here, over the years

Wednesday, June 23, 2021

Becoming more open

Marta wrote:

What I'm starting to realize (by what I've been reading and learning, and by my own observations of my experience), is that we can most certainly choose alternatives that can lead us to more openness (like choosing more positive words to describe how we feel about something, or genuinely trying to relax and see what our children and partners see in something they like, etc.). And that if we do it often, we can probably rewire our brains, creating new neurological paths and becoming indeed more open.
—Marta Venturini Machado
photo by Elise Lauterbach

Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Both can be right

When I asked Joyce Fetteroll which topics or pages on her site she thought were best for new unschoolers, she responded:

My favorite topics are chores and television so all those pages. One crystal clear "Aha!" moment that drew me toward unschooling came from How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk. The authors pointed out how mom could see a situation one way and kids could see a situation a different way and both be right. It was something I knew but had never put into words.

Those two topics, chores and television, encapsulate for me how important for unschooling it is to move our understanding into our kids' points of view. If a mom can understand why her child sees the world as he does, she's miles closer to relating to him. If she can understand why he sees the world as he does—chores as conscripted labor for instance, if she can understand it comes not from lack of understanding the "right" way of seeing the word, if she can understand it comes from being 5 or 10 or 15, she's going to be able to listen and truly hear what he says and be able to respond in a way that relates to his understanding.
—Joyce Fetteroll

A Rich, Supportive Environment, Joyce Fetteroll interviewed by Sandra Dodd, 2012
photo by Janine D.

Monday, June 21, 2021

Keep an open mind

Even if you don't decide to unschool, keep an open mind about where and what your children could be learning, and where they might find the inspiration to become something like world-changing scientists.
That is paragraph 5 of 5, of "Gilligan's Island and Star Trek,"
page 152 (or 140) of The Big Book of Unschooling, noting, in part,
Dr. Robert Sapolsky's crediting of Gilligan's Island, and Dr. Mae Jemison's of Star Trek
for their abiding interest in scientific research.

This photo of Holly Dodd and a braiding pattern on a pony was taken to illustrate a quote from Professor Christine Alvarado about... well just go and read it, please.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

Layers and sky

Photos with layers keep catching my eye.

Balloonists learn that there are layers in the air, where the wind is going different speeds or directions, too.

I like that there are visually attractive layers and invisible layers represented in this photo.
photo by Gail Higgins

Friday, June 18, 2021

A step toward joy

Some of the things that help people be confidently in the moment, feeling satisfied and content are:
  • Breathing
  • Gratitude
  • Happy thoughts
  • Fondness
  • Acceptance
At first it might be relief and not joy, but as relief is a step away from fear, more relief will be progress toward joy.
The Big Book of Unschooling, page 275 (or 318)
photo by Ester Siroky

Thursday, June 17, 2021


Think of times you've wanted to hide, or just plain hid. Me, lately, from sunshine, from projects, from people.

Think about when it's okay for your kids to want to hide away a while.

Then, please, try not to hide from your kids. When they're older teens or young adults, you'll get to stay in the shade, procrastinating, maybe more than you even want to. 🙂
photo by Karen James