Free Range Learning

Free Range Learning: How Home-Schooling Changes Everything by Laura Grace Weldon: Book Cover

If I could only recommend one book about homeschooling to someone, it would be Laura Grace Weldon’s Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything. There is something for everyone in this book, whether a homeschooling veteran or someone who is contemplating whether or not to homeschool their children. While the book is unschooling-lite, families of all styles will find value in the book. Free Range Learning is not merely about homeschooling; it’s about the way people learn and interact with others, about what we take from life, and about what we make of life.

Weldon’s eloquent writing is backed by numerous studies and research. The book is not a fluff read. Readers will want to take their time, pondering and digesting the information, whether the information presented is new to them or something they have long believed. With numerous personal anecdotes from homeschooling families of all styles and experiences allowing glimpses into the lives of homeschoolers, the bulk of the book relies on sound research. While I would reccomend the book to anyone with even a passing interest in homeschooling, I would not reccomend it to anyone not open to homeschooling unless they are willing to challenge their current assumptions.

Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything promises to be a valuable research for new homeschoolers everywhere for many years to come.

Disclaimer: A copy of the book was provided by the author.

life learning…

Welcome to the September Carnival of Natural Parenting: We’re all home schoolers

This post was written for inclusion in the monthly Carnival of Natural Parenting hosted by Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama. This month our participants have shared how their children learn at home as a natural part of their day. Please read to the end to find a list of links to the other carnival participants.

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Before we were married, we made the decision that someday when we had kids, we would homeschool. At the time, we weren’t exactly certain what that would look like. When we eventually had children, we seemed to have stumbled into unschooling, sometimes referred to as life learning.

It’s a different concept for many. In fact, I think it falls into the category of one of those concepts you just don’t understand unless it clicks with you. When our oldest was three, we were involved in a small homeschool group with other families with young children who planned to homeschool. The thought was that our children would grow up knowing other children who wouldn’t go off to school at age five.

Over time, we realized that our families had different needs. Our family wanted less structure than the group had, whereas some of the other families wanted more structure. One mother in particular seemed to find our unschooling philosophy offensive. She stated, in a superior tone, that she was having conversations with her children all day and couldn’t refrain from teaching them, as it was such a part of their lives. I replied that I could understand not wanting to change something that was such a part of a family’s life.

We have cool conversations with our kids throughout the day. We do projects with them and read books together. We go fun places. Our children are learning all of the time. The difference is a bit of a paradigm shift for many from the idea of teaching to that of learning. When we teach, we decide what another person should know. When we facilitate learning, we support another person in their quest for knowledge. Just as my husband and I pursue subjects we are interested in and learn, so do our children. It would be rather impossible to go through life without learning. Our children are continually learning through life.

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Carnival of Natural Parenting -- Hobo Mama and Code Name: MamaVisit Hobo Mama and Code Name: Mama to find out how you can participate in the next Carnival of Natural Parenting!

Please take time to read the submissions by the other carnival participants:

(This list will be updated September 14 with all the carnival links.)