Can you be an unschooler if you use a curriculum for maths and English and science?
I was guided by John Holt's writing. He said use whatever tools and resources works for you as a learner. We spend WAY TOO MUCH time judging what is 'right', 'wrong', 'good', 'bad', 'correct', 'incorrect', a legacy of our schooled way of thinking.
Consider tools and resources instead in terms of what they can offer, efficiency, suitability, appropriateness (if you need to add a moral/ethical dimension). Unschoolers unshackle themselves from the constraints of needing to think and act within the box (classroom).
Seasoned unschoolers have no qualms about their children learning from books, online or computer programs, apps, tutors, instructors, classes, distance education courses - whatever works for the learner!
When something stops working as a tool or resource or when the lessons that are needed to be learned are learned (and they aren't always the ones we think they are!), unschooling and natural learning children simply move on...
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Together with the support of my family, my aim is to help parents educate their children in stress-free, nurturing environments. In addition to building and maintaing this website, I continue to create and manage local and national home educating networks, help to organise conferences and camps, as well as write for, edit and produce newsletters, resource directories and magazines. I am an active support of national, state, regional and local home education groups.
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We began educating our three children in 1985, when our eldest was aged five years. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn as they grew and explored and discovered this amazing world since the moment they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. I hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was!
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Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent
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