What Is Unschooling?

What Is Unschooling?

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  1. Today there are a lot of parents who have chosen to homeschool their children.  Many of them are using the “unschooling” method in order to do so.  This method is focused upon creating an environment around the child’s interests so that they can learn things by themselves.

    The man who coined the term “unschooling” was named John Holt.  This educator got his start by fighting for school reform before warming up to homeschooling.  He then went on to favor what he called unschooling.  This was written about in his books “How Children Fail” (1964)How Children Learn” (1967) and “The Underachieving School”(1968).  From there he also created an unschooling magazine by the name of “Growing Without Schooling.”

    You must understand that homeschooling and unschooling are two completely different things.  The main difference is that homeschools follow a set curriculum wherein the parents act as the teachers and counselors.  However, unschoolers are free to learn about whatever they want and their parents are there only to offer advice and provide their children with the freedom to choose what they do learn.

    A lot of unschool children are hands-on learners.  These children are out and about.  They go to the library and museum.  Whenever they are at home they are reading books, asking questions and doing research.

    This real world experience equates to schoolwork in the following manner.  Take for example a child who is interested in computers.  They can learn the following:

    • Science: Researching what computers do and how they work
    • History: Learning about who invented the computers and what the first computers were like
    • English and Reading: Researching and taking notes
    • Other things may also be learned if your child decides to study something like computer programming or design.

    Even though you might think that unschooling would be a hindrance to college admittance, this is not true at all.  Many colleges actually prefer unschoolers due to their self-motivation and love of learning.  Colleges see these traits as ideal for those who want to attend college.  So, unschoolers simply need to show them their portfolio with their CLEP achievement scores, samples of the work that they have done, letters of recommendation and notations of any special achievements accomplished.

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