Thursday, March 25, 2010

Once an Unschooler, alway an unschooler!

We were recently interviewed by a student taking her Masters in Journalism and when it was my oldest daughter's turn to speak she said something that really warmed my self directed heart.
When asked how she found high school, she replied:
"If my mother hadn't let me go I would have felt that I was not in charge of my learning. But being in school was my decision in and this way, I'm still un-schooling because I choose to go. I know that I can always come back home if I want to."
She talked about some of her friends who 'stress out' so much over marks and although her marks are excellent she sees them for what they are: just marks.
She says;
"I tell my friends that there are many ways to get into Uni or College if that is the goal. Marks are not the only way in. They say, "You're crazy!""

This is what I wanted all along; that my kids could understand that having good marks will not make your life happy/successful etc. That there is need to take responsibility for one's passage in this fantastic world; that dependency is the enemy of contentment.


Anonymous said...

But grades are important. They give kids a sense of achievement and self worth.

Anonymous said...

What a wonderful endorsement of self-directed learning/life!
To Anonymous, there is much more to a person's achievement than marks, as reflected in a previous post on this site:
"[The university president] did not like the trend that saw only grade 13 examination results as the criteria for admission to university. "By continuing to require higher and higher performance in such exams," he said, "we will soon reach the level where we cut out some of our most imaginative people, students who perhaps are non-conformists but, once they find themselves, will leave many of the others far behind. I can think of Churchill and Einstein as examples."
There are many examples of great minds doing poorly in school with marks, so if you make marks the end-all for your self worth, it is not a good indicator and indeed may discourage later achievement, no?

Goodman said...

Grades are to learning as peanuts are to monkeys - rewards for performing

Anonymous said...

Grades are un-important to the great enterprises of our society. I think Gatto said something like that.
It's about knowing how to get what you want. You have to know what you want first of all though!

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