Friday, November 28, 2008

Shaping the future...

and the little minds it belongs to. Important stuff in our house, that edumakation stuff. Yep.

Confession time: I am an unschooler. I have issues with forcing my screamers to learn something that they totally do not want to learn. I firmly believe it stems from my own experience in high school. I had NO desire or need to learn Calculus. Yet I sat there, bored to tears, failing miserably because I hated it. I can do it, don't get me wrong, I have zero interest in it. Didn't then either. I can't make myself teach the screamers something uninteresting to them as a result of that one semester.

So, we spend our days playing (which is learning in and of itself): board games, card games, tag, hide and seek, pretend rope the cow/dog/sheep/whatever and anything else that their active little minds think up. The eldest has a few freebie games on the computer to help enhance his letter recognition (p.s. there isn't a letter that boy can't copy...he adores's going to be soooooo easy to transition him to bigger things), numbers (loves math too), matching and memory skills. BUT he doesn't get to play them all the time, not even every day. Recently he has taken to word recognition. Small things like hat, cat, jump, run and the likes.

Littlest screamer is a whole different field of fun. He is only 2, of course, but has zero and I mean ZERO interest in anything except coloring. Go figure. I try, he resists, I let it go. He'll come around eventually. See, unschool. It's the same approach I took with the eldest and he's ahead of the curve on a lot of things. Brag, brag, brag...I know.

No set curriculum, no set hours. We work when we want and on what we want. I've found that my little free spirits blossom under this approach in the past few weeks. Add to that the wonderful fact that we FINALLY got my large collection of books out of storage (what! you mean I can read something more than Harry Potter and Dr. Seuss?! Happy Day!!). The screamers see me reading all the time now. Devouring books one after another. They've taken up the same habit. Sitting quietly, "reading" books to one another. The time has come (the walrus said) to get the screamers something more. Not that they don't have a gazillion books just like mommy does, but something that mommy will enjoy reading just as much as them. I don't think "Clan of the Cave Bear" is really age appropriate, if you know what I mean.

So family, if you are reading this (yeah, uh huh) the screamers and mommy would love to have the following books:

The complete Oz series (there is something like 15 stories, you can get it all in one at Barnes and Noble dot com)
The complete Alice in Wonderland series (yes, the screamers like it)
The Tales of Uncle Remus : The Adventures of Brer Rabbit (I'd love the old Disney movie aka Song of the South too if you got the change)

Off now to take the youngest screamer BACK to his bed for the second time tonight...dang kid.


Ken said...

...yeah,i've been on the 'educate the young'uns' kick,since the beginning of the primaries,my two oldest(just turned 14,and soon to be 17)have now witnessed who/what/where controls our collective lives...the boy is seven,his learning is basically all 'play'...he's ahead of all the 'curves'...all we do is play hunt,play fish,play 'guns'...he has actually 'seen' analogies,from the StarWars Saga,to present day without prompts(i was a 'starwarskid' too)...the clone wars is his(and mine)favorite...anyway...yer right,keep it fun,sneak in the learning when ya can,my young'uns do not have that entitlement mentality...if they want it,they'll earn it,i do not reward bad behavior,and they are WAY 'smarter' than the majority of their 'peers'...(ask them,they will say "i/we don't have as many 'toys',but what we got we earned"...I Love My Offspring...they are so coool

d.a. said...

Oh, I adore the whole Oz series! I also read every Nancy Drew book I could get my hands on when I was a child...

Jen said...

Yah for deprogramming the kids!! I used to catch flack from my daughters teachers when I would take her out of class for a few days and we would just go camping or visit relitives over the hill. We lived in N Idaho at the time and would drive to Bremerton, Wa. It is usually a 6hr trip, but it would extend longer because we would stop at a trail here, or a park there and explore. She had so much fun turning over rocks or identifing plants. I raised her not to be a "little consumer" and to relized all those ads on tv were just there to part you from your hard earned $$. She has had a job since she was 14 and only just parted with her dodge dart. A a big ya too for Clan of the Cave Bears, I have read the series several times and cant wait for the next book.!!
what a great blog you have!

Mayberry said...

Rock on Momma! My sister is doing pretty much the same thing, bless her. I wish I could have the same for my kids, but the wife won't let it happen, so I am forced to "re-educate" my kids when they come home with some line of garbage. Fortunately, the school here is pretty conservative, but they do have their moments. One thing that sticks in my craw is that they named the elementary cafeteria the "one world cafe"..... NWO propaganda.... Believe me, I set my kids straight on that business!!!

The true danger is when liberty is nibbled away, for expedience, and by parts. --Edmund Burke