Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Alex Polikowsky. Sort by date Show all posts
Showing posts sorted by relevance for query Alex Polikowsky. Sort by date Show all posts

Tuesday, April 3, 2018


Alex Polikowsky wrote:

Unschooling takes more,
more presence,
more guidance,
more attention,
more mindfulness,
more connection,
more thinking and questioning,
more choices and better choices.
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Sandra Dodd

Saturday, September 23, 2023

Positive and beautiful

Alex Polikowsky wrote:

Fear of electromagnetic waves? What if I tell you they are everywhere and that even earth has it?? (hey I am a huge Aurora Borealis aficionado!!)

Living with all this fear is not fun and it is anxiety inducing. Anxiety is a terrible state for you or your child to live in. Learning thrives when there is peace and safety.

Feeling unsafe because your library has wifi and making life about the dangers around is a soul sucking way to live for your children and for yourself.

Surround yourself with all that is positive and beautiful including amazing wifi!
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by my neighbor, Linda G., visiting Iceland

Friday, August 5, 2022

Knowing how to respond

Alex Polikowsky wrote:
There are some big ways that are wrong and anyone can see that. Verbal abuse or physical abuse comes to mind.
But there are small things too.

Principles. The more clear, to yourself, you are about your principles and making better choices, the better you will know how to respond to a child or a situation.
—Alex Polikowsky
(longer original)

Living by Principles instead of by Rules
photo by Graham Dusseldorp

Saturday, September 12, 2020

Optimistic happy people

Alex Polikowsky wrote:

Surround yourself with optimistic happy people. Do not engage in conversation when people are complaining about their children or husbands. If a friend comes to complain about her kids I try to turn around and point out to them how that characteristic could be good or some other great thing about their children. Or I change the subject.

Look at what you have, not what you do not have. If all you focus is in negative things that is all you will see. If you always look for the positive slowly you will, more and more, see the positive and the beauty around you and that will become who you are.

—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Daniel Moyer Artisan

Saturday, December 17, 2022

Embracing, trusting, learning

Alex Polikowsky, to someone afraid of "screentime" and electronics:

If you embrace it all *with* your children you will learn with them—more than you think is possible.

You will trust unschooling and learning because you will be learning right along your children.
—Alex Polikowsky
photo of child editing video, by Kinsey Norris

Saturday, September 12, 2015

Make a loved one smile

Alex Polikowsky wrote:

He will not learn to be spoiled if he gets everything he wants—no one gets every little thing they want. But he will learn that his parents will try to give him everything he wants—if possible. He will learn about family budget and money and economics and most of all he will learn the joy of giving something that makes a loved one smile.
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Sandra Dodd, of a carousel in The Netherlands
Click it to see details.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Open your mind and heart

"Every time I opened my mind and heart to something my kids loved or were passionate about, or just enjoyed, I learned more about my kids and my life, and theirs, became richer."
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Jennie Gomes

Saturday, May 31, 2014

The beauty around you

"Look at what you have, not what you do not have. If all you focus is in negative things that is all you will see. If you always look for the positive slowly you will, more and more, see the positive and the beauty around you and that will become who you are."
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Sandra Dodd

Monday, January 23, 2023


"Choose to look at the beauty around you and to see life and people through loving eyes."
—Alex Polikowsky

Sandra's addition: "... to see life and people" and fancy chickens, cupcakes, frost, sleeping puppies and your favorite mug as beautiful.
photo by Helene McNeill

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

See through loving eyes

Alex wrote:

Decide to not hold on to your pessimism. Choose today to be optimistic. Choose to look at the beauty around you and to see life and people through loving eyes.

That is all it takes.
—Alex Polikowsky

The Value of Optimism
photo by Karen James

Monday, January 16, 2023

What and how much to eat

Alex Polikowsky, the day after "Pi Day" one year when her kids were younger:

My kids can eat bowls of sugar if they want. They are not fat, obese of even chubby. They have lots of cookies, candy and sweets at home at any time. Just yesterday I bought two pies for Pi day and baked. My daughter ate a big piece of the pumpkin pie but only the filling. Then she asked for an apple and ate half of it. Then she went to the refrigerator and grabbed the red bell pepper that we got for the Guinea Pigs and cut a couple pieces for them and ate the rest. That was while I was reading [an unschooling discussion]. That was her late night snack.

My son ate a strip of bacon and left the other one and went to sleep.

They have chosen what they eat and how much all their lives.
—Alex Poliowsky
March 2012

True Tales of Kids Turning Down Sweets
photo by Sylvia Woodman, of candy sitting peacefully

Sunday, February 4, 2018

The value of optimism

"Choose to look at the beauty around you and to see life and people through loving eyes."
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Chrissy Florence

Wednesday, July 13, 2022

"A" is for Abundance

This photo is the background for the "A" on the current Learn Nothing Day logo.
Jenny Cyphers wrote:

In order for kids to feel and see abundance, they first must have parents who feel and see it too, even if there is no money. Go to parks, pick up sticks, ride bikes to new places, swing on the swing differently, make bubbles and blow them in front of a fan. Look at stars at night and try to find constellations, light things on fire with magnifying glass, roast hot dogs for dinner (it's cheap), the possibilities are limitless, but only if you choose to see them. THAT is what will help your kids learn how to be creative thinkers—seeing and doing creative things.
—Jenny Cyphers

The photo appeared here in First aid for scary, sad days of doubt
Thank you, Alex Polikowsky.

Monday, May 24, 2021

The benefit of untangling

Any parent with unresolved childhood trauma might want to gradually start untangling those memories for the benefit of your children, of yourself, of your partner, of your family, and in order for unschooling to work well.


photo by Alex Polikowsky

Friday, July 24, 2015

Give it a rest.

Don't click anything.
It's Learn Nothing Day.
Art by MD/Daniel and Alex Polikowsky in 2008

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Brave, happy Barbie

"Parents are afraid of a plastic doll that is not real, and kids know it—but what really damages a child's self esteem and body image is a parent comparing, critiquing, complaining and dissing their own body (or someone else's body)."
—Alex Polikowsky
photo by Robyn and Jayne Coburn

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Supplies for parents

Unschooling doesn't work out for every family, for various reasons. In a conversation, an unschooling mom said some families don't have the time, money and benevolent patience it takes to unschool. I thought it was a good checklist of needs: Time, money and benevolent patience.

What it takes
photo by Sandra, of Alex Polikowsky's son and a snowman as big as he was

Monday, September 26, 2022

Attractions and fears

[Warnings can become attractions.]

It seems what will cause a kid to watch a show he doesn't want to watch is parental disapproval. If he's been told it's too scary, too adult, or forbidden, his natural curiosity might cause him to want to learn WHY. My kids, with the freedom to turn things on or off, turned LOTS of things off, or colored or did Lego or played with dolls or action figures during "the boring parts" (often happening to be the adult parts—what did they care?) and only looked back up when happy music or light or dogs or kids got their attention again.
photo by Alex Polikowsky

Thursday, January 21, 2016

In peace, at home

Alex Polikowsky wrote:

Some people go to school, have Special Ed for many years, have labels and they still cannot do things they way they are "supposed to." Those will still carry all the harm from feeling less than, and broken. I would not want that for any child.
photo by Cathy Koetsier, of an old waterwheel, in France

Friday, September 26, 2014

Unexpected juxtaposition

The connection between humor and learning is well known. Unexpected juxtaposition is the basis of a lot of humor, and even more learning. It can be physical, musical, verbal, mathematical, but basically what it means is that unexpected combinations or outcomes can be funny. There are funny chemistry experiments, plays on words, math tricks, embarrassingly amusing stories from history, and there are parodies of famous pieces or styles of art and music.

La connexion entre l’humour et l’apprentissage est bien connue. Des juxtapositions inattendues sont la base d’un certain humour, et encore plus, de l’apprentissage. Cela peut être physique, musical, verbal, mathématique, mais au fond, ce que cela signifie, c’est que les combinaisons ou les résultats inattendus peuvent être amusants. Il y a des expériences chimiques amusantes, des jeux de mots, des jeux de maths, des textes historiques amusants et embarrassants, et il y a des parodies de pièces célèbres ou de styles artistiques et de musique.
photo by Sandra Dodd, of artsiness at Alex Polikowsky's house