Stories of an Unschooling Family

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10: Should a Child Be Given the Freedom to Choose?

If children are given the freedom to do whatever they want, will they choose to do nothing at all?

My teenage daughters, Imogen (19) and Sophie (13) join me for today's podcast, to discuss this question. During our conversation we talk about whether it is actually possible to do nothing at all, and how parents and children sometimes differ in their opinion about what is a valuable way of spending time. I ask my daughters if they think children should be made to do difficult things. And what about things they do not like doing? We also chat about the need for quiet time. By the time we get to the end of the podcast we are mulling over this question: Could it actually be essential for parents to let children choose?

I've gathered together a few blog posts I've written on this subject. They can be found in the program notes on my blog, Stories of an Unschooling Family.
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9: Mothers, Unschooling and a Lazy Way of Life

Is unschooling a lazy way of life? Do mothers choose to unschool because they can’t be bothered putting together a proper homeschool program for their children’s education? Perhaps unschooling mothers don’t actually do much in a day. My daughter Imogen and I discuss these questions in today’s podcast.  

Along the way, we also talk about how we can encourage a love of learning, strewing, tiredness and how everything is potentially interesting, even maths!

Please ignore any contradictions. This is an unscripted conversation where we mull over ideas as we chat. Words don't always come out perfectly!

The program notes can be found, as usual, on my blog Stories of an Unschooling Family.

sound effects credit: http://www.freesfx.co.uk/


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8: Beginnings and Endings, and a Simple Christmas

This week I talk about beginnings and endings. Last week the new school term began, my daughter Charlotte started a new year of her life, and two of my girls have begun a new project. (They're hoping to earn some money!)

Some beginnings are followed closely by an ending, like the death of a baby. I ponder whether grief is something of interest to only a few, or will we all experience grief at some stage of our lives? Along the way I also chat about traditions, minimalism and Christmas, and how to begin and end podcasts. (Something I want to improve!)

As usual the program notes can be found on my blog Stories of an Unschooling Family.

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7: Unschooling Children, a School Teacher Father, and Tea

This week I chat to my husband Andy and our 19 year old daughter Imogen. We talk about Andy's two roles: school teacher and unschooling father. Andy shares his own learning story as he tells of his redundancy, and his return to university mid-life which led to a whole new career. Along the way we discuss a few unschooling principles, the ways fathers can be involved in his children's lives... and tea!

As usual, this week's program notes can be found on my blog Stories of an Unschooling Family
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6: Unschooling Experts, Criticism and Radical Chore Rosters

This week:

  • I talk about the definition of unschooling. 
  • Are labels useful or an invitation for criticism? 
  • I ponder if there are such people as unschooling experts. 
  • And can a radical unschooling family use a chore roster? No? Perhaps?
  • I chat about how my ideas have changed over the years. And how inconvenient it is to have my past ideas published somewhere in black and white, for all to see, when I no longer believe what I wrote!
As usual the program notes, which include a number of posts related to this podcast, can be found on my blog Stories of an Unschooling Family.
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