I coined that word myself from the term Radical Unschooling…
Because, well, unschooling is just Radically COOL!
I am constantly amazed at the things that PanKwake teaches herself.
- How to manage finances through her Robux…
- Ant farming…
- That brown-eyed people need less sleep than blue-eyed and are more athletic (yes, at least one legitimate study shows it from a reputable university)…
- How to climb a rock wall (executive functioning skills)…
- …And so much computer stuff it boggles the mind.
But what is unschooling?
The new Welsh Guidelines on Home Education defines it as:
The learner is encouraged to initiate own learning through exploration and engagement with activities of their own making or sourcing.
Parents facilitate access to opportunity but try not to guide or lead.
Unschoolers.org has this to say about Radical Unschooling:
Radical unschooling extends the philosophy of unschooling into all aspects of life. It involves partnering with our children, not just with regard to academic pursuits, but in daily activities such as eating, television viewing, and going to bed.
The bedrock of radical unschooling is trust: a belief that our children possess an inner wisdom or intuitiveness far beyond what mainstream America gives them credit for. Parents act as guides and facilitators, helping children to connect with that inner wisdom.
Rather than strict rules, unschoolers use principles. Instead of imposing limits, unschoolers work with their children to help them live in a balanced and healthy way. Instead of a strict schedule, unschoolers follow a daily rhythm.
People may confuse radical unschooling with neglectful parenting. This is not the case. Unschooling is not “un-parenting”. Parents who live the radical unschooling life are very involved, mindful and intentional. It is not a free-for-all, or utter chaos, or children raising themselves, although mainstream media has tended to portray it as such.
At its core, RadiCool Unschooling means throwing out everything you think or were taught about school, education, AND parenting.
It means being available for your child…24/7…365…for years and years and years!
PanKwake is not only autistic but also dyslexic. She has NO interest in reading…except when it comes to gaming…and chatting. I have quite literally been up for two and three hours in the middle of the night/early morning with her. Yes, I got up at 1 a.m. and stayed up until 3 READING what another child said to her…and helping her to type her responses. As a result her letter recognition is improving. That is our literacy.
Perhaps you feel that school could make her read. Really? Do you know what happens to dyslexics in schools? Placed in special classes where they are treated as if they are stupid simply because written words do not process in their brains.
Unschooling allows us to assist PanKwake in excelling in her strengths…not allowing her challenges to determine her whole future.
And PanKwake has many, Many, MANY strengths to build upon. Abilities and interests that she pursues…that makes her a productive and meaningful member of society.
But more about that next week…I am gone tomorrow to take JalerDasBirdz back to the airport. And Friday and the weekend…we need some US time. So rather than tell you about RadiCool Unschooling, I am going to show you…