Thursday, April 23, 2009

Out n' About Education

Yes, I concur, the term "homeschooling" needs a makeover. It just doesn't seem to describe accurately what it means to be a homeschooling family these days. A lot of people, when they hear the word "homeschool", immediately think, "weird-anti-social kids, seemingly-impossible-self-discipline for over-worked parents, and a struggle to fill time with books and worksheets, while sitting at home on your sofa." Not so.

When I think homeschool, I think hands on-learning, real life experiences, adventures and discoveries made alive through role play and experiments. I think P.E. that doesn't involve a locker room, but a mountain of ski slopes. Or a geography class that isn't a plastic globe, but a roadtrip across the States, or a flight to another country. I think of great English literature being read, discussed, and enjoyed as a family activity. I think of math and science as subjects that come naturally as we open our eyes to the complex world around us. I think of gaining hard work ethic, and meeting important deadlines, as an organic process that will be learned as we work together in this world. I think of kids who get to thrive on positive self esteems and good, moral peer pressure.

I think of a family who wants to spend time learning and growing together, watching each other become the people we are meant to be. And loving it.
This is the culture we would like to create for our family. It is a good culture. It is one that we should be proud of. It may not be what everyone else is doing, but we've never been ones to follow the crowd.

Non-institutionalized education? Independent studies? Organified learning? Home-based Ed? Un-schooling? Jackson funny farm? I like the term Out n' About Ed, because that's what I'm all about. Yes, I made that up myself. :)

Whatever you want to call it, it's gonna be awesome.

Educationally yours,



Trish&Heath said...

have you read, "Mommy, Teach me! Preparing your preschool child for a lifetime of learning." ? It's by Barbara Curtis, I think you would like it.

arianne said...

I love this post. You put it into words the way I keep trying.

Hilary-Dilary-Dock said...

I TOTALLY AGREE!! Oh Sally! We have GOT to figure out a way of doing an out n' about education co-op long-distance. Well, actually, who knows, maybe we'll end up living in the same town by the time Jude is walking and talking. I love your approach to education. It's the way really smart people have been learning for centuries.

redrockmama said...

Can I get a amen?! WOOO! I feel exactly the same way. 100% and on top of that, the feeling of FREEDOM is amazing! The freedom to go off and explore (gasp!) during the week in the middle of the afternoon?! The freedom to go places, and truly LEARN (not short-term memorize). It's liberating! And, yes, it's gonna be AWESOME!

Unknown said...

This is your mom who has been teaching in the U.S. public school system for way too many more years then I have wanted to, is absolutely weary and sick to death of all the hoopla and just told my friend yesterday I would never want this for my grandchildren saying . . . I CONCUR!