Home Schooling in America: ‘Unschoolers’ Put Children in Charge of Their Learning
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Home Schooling in America: ‘Unschoolers’ Put Children in Charge of Their Learning


– This is Worthington, Mass which is the Eastern
part of the Berkshires. It’s actually reminds me
a lot of the way I grew up in Romania out in Transylvania. Grow a lot of our own food. (rooster crowing and chickens squaking) And then we also wanted
to make sure our kids were around animals and out in nature, and had chores to do
instead of just being bored. We have five kids, 23
all the way down to 13. – [Erin Voiceover] Two of
which are still school age that are unschooling. – That one looks cool too. Unschooling is a, it’s a
philosophy of homeschooling where the kids are in charge
of their own educations. – It was a concept that
my wife learned about and I wasn’t so crazy
about it because I come from Romania where
education is very rigid. There’s no other choice
but to go to school. I think as the time went
on and we started seeing how well William was doing. He graduated from UMASS Business School and then Paul behind him. He’s been going to
Holyoke Community College. And then Annie, she’s finishing
off her Associate’s Degree and then she wants to
transfer to a four year school to finish the last two years. Sam he decided he was gonna to take Community College classes. 16 years old and is taking a writing class and is doing great in it. – I’m Hannah Matica and I’ve
never been to a school before. I feel like almost just
everything I do in the day, I’m learning something from it. I’m always, I feel like
people are always learning. And even if it’s that playing video games or we are going for a walk, you’re still, you’re getting something
out of everything you do. – They have a lot of freedom,
but at the same time, they have a lot of responsibility as well. Because we’re giving them
the responsibility to be in charge of their own
lives from a very young age and I think most people are
not comfortable with that. Most adults are not trusting that process of how people learn. And they think well my kids would never do anything unless I made them. Learning should never be a chore. It should be a pleasure and a privilege and that’s what it is for my kids. – There is no, what I would say, a plan. Where you say okay this day we’re gonna do this five things. We’re gonna start at eight in the morning and finish up three in the afternoon. And they have certain types of activities that they do and then everything else around those activities just happens. – My job is to just help
them get where they wanna go. And if I can do it, fine. If I can’t, there’s gonna be someone in the community that
I can get them in touch with that can make that happen for them. – Hannah’s working on
a novel and she wanted to illustrate her own novel. So we have a librarian in
town, Leona, she’s an artist. – And she’s running really
fast, she’s gonna be bent over a lot and so is he. – Yeah she is bent over. Well I tried to make her look
bent over. (Hannah giggling) – Based on what I’ve seen, she’s done some pretty amazing work. I was, I was like I
wanna make more friends. Then I was like, but if I went to school, I wouldn’t be able to do my art lesson. I wouldn’t be able to play
soccer as much as I do. I wouldn’t be able to
do all of these things that I really enjoy doing. I’d have to give that all up
and it wasn’t worth it to me. – They’re passionate about it and because they’re passionate about it, they work really hard at it. And when you work really hard at it, you get really good at things. And so, that’s really
the way that it works. And I think sometimes when
people see the end result they don’t understand
what went before that. That it was them making these
decisions for themselves. – I would say that in a, it’s
very difficult to do what we’re doing if at least
one parent is not at home. – The one thing you need
if you’re gonna unschool or homeschool is a library card. Search out things that
are free or low cost. You really get out there and
make use of the community and again, it’s all, the
world is your oyster. You just have to think outside the box and figure out how
these things can happen. How you can make them happen.

About James Carlton

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5 thoughts on “Home Schooling in America: ‘Unschoolers’ Put Children in Charge of Their Learning

  1. Oh I love this concept. I wish this freedom could be made available to students within the public school system who don’t have parents at home.

  2. Love this!! It always blesses me when I see homeschoolers/unschooling kids thrive. And to see that the parents worked together even though dad was a bit skeptical is amazing.

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