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Unschooling Portfolio of the (Month)

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Posted on : 5:07 PM | By : Nic | In :

So what's a better classroom than a roadtrip?  All things considered, we actually didn't do very much in Montana, at least none of those touristy things that people do there.  The girls have been on quite a few long car rides and although they complain, they are able to sit for a while without too much trouble with plenty of books and drawing supplies.    


Things we did in Montana:
We drove around Flathead Lake and wondered if large lakes experience tides.  As far as we could find out, they do not, although we didn't look up the Great Lakes.

We stayed up late and watched the stars and identified the Big Dipper, Little Dipper and the North Star.

We built fires and roasted hot dogs and marshmallows.  We gave Annie the responsibility of a large hot metal rod for hot dogs and she loved it until we had to take it when she barely missed branding my cousin in the face, who fortunately has quick reflexes.  Later we drew a picture of fire and discussed the colors and what they mean (blue is super hot, etc).

Annie practiced reading on some things and she's gotten much better at remembering what she just sounded out.

Annie learned to use a toaster and made us Eggo waffles.

We hiked the Trail of the Cedars and learned about how the root system of the trees only grow the depth that they need to get water.  We saw the trees that had very shallow root systems and had fallen over because it had been so wet.

We went to the Amazing Maze, a giant wood maze structure that takes about an hour find your way through.  We also did go-carts and bumper boats.  It's funny, in Montana the tourist attractions are always "The Amazing Montana Vortex" or "The Great Grizzly Bear Experience".  It has to start with Awesome, Amazing or Great or it just isn't good enough.

They played with the kids of a couple my old friends who had also come up from wherever they had been, my sister's kids and my cousin's baby, and so that took care of plenty of 'socializing' with all kinds of ages.

When we came back we spent the night in Vancouver and went to Granville Island, where we looked at the farmer's market, had lunch and then took off for Pacific Center and had to stop in the Apple Store just to see what it is like.  

So that's what we did, along with reading a few books, and playing and messing around.  One thing I am looking into is classical unschooling, which is something I kind think we do although I just found out that other people do that too.  I'm not sure quite how to describe it... I kind of think it's the way that Louisa May Alcott was educated.  Her dad had her memorizing poetry and learning languages and reading great literature, but at the same time she was free to satisfy her own curiosity and go at her own pace and lead the discussion.

Comments (2)

Hmmm...as the mother of an 18 month old I find the concept of "unschooling" interesting. I dunno if I have the discipline to homeschool, but I would like to avoid the public schools.

Have you ever read Louis L'amour's book; "Education of a Wandering Man"? It's quite interesting. I have considered trying to emulate him and reading all of the books he has read. It might be an idea to start off my daughter's education by reading them to her...age appropo of course.

Nice blog. I like it.

Rebecca

Thanks Rebecca! :) It's funny that you say you don't have the discipline to homeschool... I was homeschooled, and I feel like I wouldn't have the discipline to wake up every day and get my kids ready for school, lol. I'm just not used to it.