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Unschooling While Going to School

By Leo Babauta

A friend recently asked:

"As parents who don't feel they can take the plunge into fully unschooling, what can we do that will give us some of the benefits of unschooling while still having our kids in a traditional school system?"

Great question. And this is one of the brilliant things about unschooling -- there's no one way to do it. It's a mindset and an approach, not a method. It's about breaking free from the reliance on a teacher for information, allowing the student to direct his own learning, to be self-reliant, to figure things out, to break down the line between Learning and Life. They're the same thing -- learning doesn't only happen in a classroom or while you're doing homework.

So how can you unschool while going to a traditional school? However the hell you want! :)

ESL: What do you do in your free time?

On True East

It must be the quintessential ESL question. Every student seems to have a canned response to this.

What’s your name? How old are you? And what do you do in your free time?

The response will likely be rigid and not at all indicative of what they actually get up to outside class. I go to the cinema, I go swimming and I listen to music. It’s the same for teenagers, kids or adults.

A fellow teacher once shared that he is eagerly awaiting the day a middle aged man stands up in front of his classmates and says, “I go to a bar and pick up chicks.”

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