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  • PEACHY KEEN

    Filed at 9:12 pm under by dcobranchi

    Michael Peach is blogging again with yet another URL. This one should last him his whole life, I’d hazard. His most recent post is interesting. Things may be different in the UK; here unschooling is just part of the continuum.

    I also do not feel confident that when push comes to shove that these ‘school at homers’ will fight too strongly for those of us with a more informal approach. Will someone who sits their children at little desks at home and follows a curriculum really back up the parents who let their children run free in the world when the man from the state comes a’calling…

    I think not.

    I hope MP is just being pessimistic. I’d hate to think that the edu-crats had managed to divide “us” over there.

    10 Responses to “PEACHY KEEN”


    Comment by
    darby
    August 18th, 2004
    at 10:35 pm

    The question is, who’s dividing from whom?

    I expect he’d consider me very school-at-home-ish. Even worse, I actually have one child still in the system. Most of the other homeschoolers I run into locally are unschoolers. I’m used to getting some flack from them about my methods. I don’t ask people anymore for feedback on what I’m doing with my son, because I inevitably get shot down. (“You use a SCHEDULE?” “You REQUIRE him to WORK?” “You’ll burn out!”) Bleah…

    We had a great year last year, and I intend to do the same this year.

    I have no issues supporting other people’s right to unschool their kids. I guess my question is – can they support my right to school the way I want? Without telling me that I’m ruining my kids by being too “schoolish” or that I’m probably going to sell them out to the establishment first chance I get?


    Comment by
    Mike Peach
    August 19th, 2004
    at 2:36 am

    Hi Darby

    Yes, I guess this could work both ways. However as the authorities can easily monitor your more formal approach (Because you produce written work etc.)the situation is unlikely to occur in reverse.

    I also have one ‘still in the system’ (She lives with my ex.) and it really infuriates me that she enjoys it so much and is doing so well. She thinks I am a wierdo!! (Who’d a’thunk it.)

    Being a libertarian also I think we should all be left to do our own thing so I would back you up to the hilt. I mean it will take you some time to get the school out of ‘your’ system and eventually free your kids. (Just joshing)

    We in the UK tend to follow where you Americans tread and contrary to what Daryl posted; Aren’t the splits just starting to become apparant?

    It might just be my perception (and I hope it is) but I think they are.


    Comment by
    darby
    August 19th, 2004
    at 7:33 am

    (Desperately resisting the urge to call you a “peach”…) 😉

    I was cranky last night, and you are right. It would be easy for me not to be concerned if the gov’t started asking for yearly evaluations to prove that my kid is progressing. I’ve got files and folders and it would take all of 5 minutes to find them. I’ll have to keep that in mind, if it ever comes to that.

    Sometimes I even find myself wishing that someone (anyone!) would show interest in what we are doing. Certainly the other homeschoolers I know aren’t interested, though I still hassle them periodically by showing them my most exciting new curriculum finds.

    For what it’s worth, though, I’m a Canadian (Ontario) and apparently no one cares whether my kids go to school or not. 🙂


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    August 19th, 2004
    at 9:29 am

    Darby, one of the contributing reasons to the legislation I’m fighting in New Jersey was a muddled newspaper article about unschooling. The first time a bunch of homeschoolers came together at the state capital to protest, some took it on themselves to remove sheets explaining unschooling from packets that group leaders had prepared for the legislators.

    Unschoolers are the red-headed stepchildren of the movement, at least down here. It’s interesting that you apparently have such a concentration.


    Comment by
    Rikki
    August 19th, 2004
    at 9:40 am

    I’m somewhere in the middle here. I keep records, but it’s more of a general thing, to remember what we did. (yay for freeware homeschool tracker) I’m also a packrat, so I’ve got boxes of papers archived, three in here, two in the garage, one up in the attic, and I think I had Jeff take two out to the storage shed. I dunno, I suppose if anyone came calling I could just hand over my boxes of stuff. I jot down things in the HST software like “math – turning fractions into decimals” or “Science – continued tree leaf identification with 12 new species” I do not keep grades, I just mark missed things and we go over them. I do not test unless the kids ask for one for fun. I also don’t follow any particular course of study, rather have a more general view of which direction is up, and do not mind if we go in circles to get there. We make a list at the beginning of the year what they want to learn sometime within the next 6 months and we rewrite that list as we go.

    I can see though, how it would look worse for us if we were inspected for following state rules for pub schools and grade levels, because we aren’t. Frankly, I think their rules are stupid. We are learning, precisely what the kids want to learn and in the order I happen to find the resources for.

    Unfortunately, the pettiness of humans in general is rampant in each microcosm of humans I’ve ever been involved with. You will always find someone that is doing things in a ‘better’ way than you, at least in their own opinion. Honestly, I find it hard to see any unification for protecting unschoolers, not when there’s too much at stake for being on the ‘winning’ side in a divided team. Even those of us that don’t classically fall into either camp will likely be classified as collateral damage if it ever came down to ‘proving’ to the state that homeschool is a viable option.

    Or maybe I just need more coffee this morning. It’s too early to think this much. HA!


    Comment by
    Rikki
    August 19th, 2004
    at 9:42 am

    Gosh that was a long and rambling bit. Think maybe I should.. oh I dunno, put stuff like that in my blog instead of the inane fluff that’s been there lately? heheheh


    Comment by
    darby
    August 19th, 2004
    at 9:54 am

    Tim, I think what skews the mix for me is that locally we have two big homeschool organizations. One’s Catholic and attracts most of the folks homeschooling for religious reasons. The other group encompasses “everyone else”.

    I have a suspicion that the religious homeschoolers are possibly more likely to be structured in their approach to schooling, whereas the pagans and hippies and libertarians and etc… are more likely to reject the educational establishment.

    Not being Catholic, I obviously belong to the other group, and therefore run into more anti-establishment folks at homeschool gatherings.


    Comment by
    Tim Haas
    August 19th, 2004
    at 10:11 am

    Darby:

    That’s even more interesting — an “everything else” group that manages to have more than five members and stay together from year to year? Wow! Maybe it’s all the carcinogens that keep us too cranky to get along down here.


    Comment by
    darby
    August 19th, 2004
    at 10:52 am

    Our “everything else” group has hundreds of members. If anything, it’s a little TOO large – digging through the directory in order to network last year was quite an undertaking.

    Maybe it’s all that legal marijuana. 😉 It just makes us more mellow…


    Comment by
    Tenn
    August 19th, 2004
    at 4:52 pm

    I hope the movement doesn’t divide itself. While we have more of a “schoolish” approach right now (that may continually change) I would fight for the right of anyone to unschool or school how they wish.

    While some of my record keeping could be easy to evaluate – I don’t want anyone in my business and evaluating what I choose to include and not include. There are many different reasons we homeschool and many different approaches and we all need to support, encourage and fight for one another.

    Our hs group has very different styles – almost evenly split between unschoolers and classical education. We all support and encourage each other and believe it or not have a learning coop in addition to our feild trips and playdates. Any one of us would stand up for the other and just because I let my kids work at desks doesn’t mean I want to bow to the local district oversight.

    Peace,
    Tenn