Thursday, October 23, 2014

Quotes from veteran unschooling mothers chatting online together :

"Been unschooling these kids for a long time now. Just gotta say, I'm BLOWN AWAY by how well its all worked out."

"Yes, I'm weepy and sad that it's gone by and I want to do it again but relax this time. Because unschooling was SO easy, and so okay, and now that I got that, she's almost gone" 

"I'm pretty happy with how my kids have turned out. They are all employed. They're in good relationships, solid, except for Sam, and that's okay because he's busy learning things and knows he's not ready for that yet - that shows maturity too. But I know, because I do remember, even though the memories are fading, I know I lost sleep worrying. Was I doing enough (Yes). Would they be as prepared as their peers (More so). Would they be outcasts (They were the most popular kids that never went to school). Do they need a HS diploma.(Sometimes). Would they be able to relate to people who didn't have the same educational opportunities (i.e. public schoolers from this podunk place) (Not always. They have as much tolerance as I do for ignorance). Would they hate me. (Sometimes). All in all, my kids are by far more successful, both career-wise and relationship-wise, than I was as their ages. They are doing more things right, sooner. Is it because they were unschooled? I absolutely believe so."

"It's amazing how smart you can be when there aren't dozens of adults analyzing you and measuring your intelligence against arbitrary standards." 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


This article, dear children, is true down to the last word. It perfectly describes my recent dilemma at work, as well as the solution. Have I ever tried to talk myself out of behavior created problems? Yep. Did it work? Nope. Its wrong. 

This is right--in terms of business, friendships, families, and romances:

What are some consequences of low trust, and high trust?

In low-trust environments, you'll see low morale, disengagement and a lack of commitment. You'll also see people manipulating, distorting facts and withholding information. There will be resistance to new ideas, bad-mouthing, finger-pointing, overpromising, underdelivering and, often, tension and fear. Everything will take longer to do and everything will cost more.

The converse in high-trust cultures is equally true. When the trust goes up in an organization, the speed will go up and costs will come down. Your ability to collaborate goes up, as does your ability to attract, retain and engage people. When trust goes up, you’ll see people sharing information, not afraid to make mistakes, more creativity, higher accountability and greater energy and satisfaction. When you move the needle on trust, you move all kinds of other needles with it.

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Handmade Puppet Parade always sets a wonderful tone for the beginning of fall. Art is nearly the best humans have to offer and its always good to be randomly immersed for a while. We took Grandmother and spent a lovely afternoon on the street last weekend.
 Mask Making, part 2, out from behind the camera...
 Mask Making, a photographic essay through the eyes (and Olympus) of Ry.

Did I mention another homeschooling mother gave my daughter her cast-off Olympus digital camera? I've always said its important to give kids real tools for their work. I give toddlers sharp scissors and paintbrushes made with hair. Tools matter. Apparently this goes for cameras as well. The only down side is that now I feel I need a new camera.

I'm so grateful to Shannon for the Olympus. It was a game changing gift. I love my girl's artistic eye, her natural sense of composition and her style. Photography has become her primary creative outlet these days. And now she's got a much better toolbox to work with. I think this is the best portrait of Jackson, ever. And Ry, are there two animals in this image, or three? Very nice work!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Next assignment. Well, I suppose I should first mention the first assignment. The kids are taking an essay writing class this fall. If the class trends the way its started, they will be writing an essay a week through December. First class, a one paragraph essay. Second class, three paragraphs. Third class, five, and so on. Actually, its turned out to be fun and they rather enjoy it.

Because we're unschoolers I rarely declare mandatory assignments. But this next thing is just too good. First, we'll read: The True-Life Horror That Inspired Moby-Dick. Then we are going to listen to the audio version of Moby Dick. And we'll sum up next year when we all go see this together! That's some badass lesson planning, if I do say so myself.

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