Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Unschooled a film by Jason Marsh. Review; by B. E

What do kids do all day if they don’t go to school and they don’t follow a curriculum? People want to know.

Unschooled, a film by Jason Marsh (who himself was not unschooled) is a portrayal into the lives of 3 unschooling families. The children in the film range from ages 8 to 22.

The movie presents the essence of unschooling philosophy; self directed, interest based learning.

Kids in the movie display thoughtfulness, a sense of humour and sometimes a sassy attitude in response to the way society views them and how they view what they themselves are doing.

Learning is by following one's natural curiosity; hence a plethora of extraordinary pursuits and interests such as two brothers whose interests include metal -smithing in the back yard, chain mail making, crafts, Scottish dancing, hawk watching and so on (the bird lover is at University of Berkley for those who wonder if unschoolers get into university). A 12 year old who creates funky wallets out of playing cards and who roller blades around the house getting breakfast!

The parents are part of a group of people who have really though about what education means and who continue to question their decisions. In the interviews many express satisfaction with how their children are turning out, their capacity to develop and attain what their children set out to achieve. The honesty is encouraging; ‘parental panic’ is something all too familiar amongst unschooling parents (“will my child turn out completely ignorant?”)

In conclusion, I was delighted with the movie because I think it was a fair portrayal of what unschooling is about –the families are interesting, creative, close and they are engaging in life in a joyous and autonomous way.

Kudos to Jason.


Scott Hughes said...

I know some unschoolers, and I've been looking for a book or few on the topic.

kimzyn said...

That sounds interesting. Can you post a link where we can see this film or purchase/rent it from? Thanks,
Kim from

Jennifer said...

Looks like there is some information here:

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