Sunday, January 03, 2010

Uncool Unschoolers

I am really spoiled when it comes to the community of people I live within; mostly open-minded,creative individuals that if they don't understand what i am doing, at least respect what i do (home education, environmentalism etc).

So it is gives me pause when i hear that others have not had this sort of experience, (specifically with un-schooling) and that even amongst unschoolers narrow -mindedness abounds. Why should this surprise me though? Many ideas start out original,radical and cool. People, being people try to limit and gain control over the idea; creating fixed rules and definitions around it and deviation from the boundaries is prohibited.
I remember once when I met a woman at a family event who unschooled. She told me that before she decided if she wanted to associate with another families, she would ask them first if they were unschoolers; if not, she would have nothing to do with them ( She said this confidentially-aware that we were unschooler type). This is too bad for her because she missed the opportunity to meet unconventional people in conventional places.

Now there is a proper way to 'unschool'; it must fit within the prescribed mould or it is not unschooling. Period. And you are not allowed to call yourself or your family unschoolers if you don't fit the mould!

My comeback is "Why care?" Who cares about labels and why are they being used to limit (as schooling does which is why we unschool in the first place) and box- in and define and confine people? If unschooling should mean anything then it should be freedom first.

Your comments and experiences with this are welcome!

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