Full time single mommy.
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Anonymous: As for the subject of unschooling: What if your kids don't want to learn to read and write? Or to do everyday mathematical calculations? Or learn history of the world? Of course it is your and your partner's decision how to raise your children, but I am not so sure that giving them the freedom to do whatever them want is such a good idea, as they don't have the maturity that adults have to decide on what's best for them and their future. Unschooling sounds good for now, but what about tomorrow?
I am curious, have you ever been around babies, toddlers or children? Have you watched them try and try again to do something they have seen you do? Have you watched them grow from being completely helpless into toddlers who leap from anything they have climbed onto? Children have a natural instinct to learn, to discover, to do what those who are older are doing. My two watch all that I do, they want to help with the baking and learn counting and measuring from this, while also being productive. Because they are not pushed to learn, sat in a room and told what to do and how to do it they are able to let their natural curiosity drive them to learn. And remember, there is not just one way to learn something and how frustrating is it when you are a child and the teacher is teaching and you are not understanding! We do not all think and learn in the same way. We do not all need to know the history of the world before reaching a certain age. I do not agree that cramming a child’s mind full of information is in anyway good for them. The pressure can be unbearable and the stress! How can that ever be a good thing for a child? And to be quite frank, I do not care if they are not interested in the history of the world, I do not care if they do not have an interest in learning algebra or if they have a hard time with spelling (as I do). I would see them find what they love to do at a young age and know themselves and their own interests. Learning to read and write will come when it starts to hinder their ability to know more about what they love.
Children who are pushed to learn or made to learn in a way that does not resonate with them will form a resistance to learning. I would be worrying about these children! There are so many who are lost in the school system, those who are labelled as trouble makers because they have no way to let out their energy other than being noisy in class. Those who are diagnosed with ADD and ADHD and medicated rather than given the opportunity to learn in a way that suits their needs. The school system is all about control. It can be very damaging to a child.