I recently G-chatted with my younger son who is now in his senior year in college. I know many of you – parents to younger children – would love to know what grown unschoolers have to say about their experiences. I thought I will just copy/paste our chat with minor editing so that you can get a taste of a grown unschooler musings about his experiences:
I’m reading Melinda’s comment on your most recent post.
People really seem to think that children need to be critiqued and learn how to deal with school type criticism at a young age.
The question I get most often at school is how it was to transfer from unschooling to being graded and my typical response is that I used community college to help me transition, but I think it’s much more that I had tested myself in the past and was familiar with the process, say, with video games that implicitly test you. Although… I did need to get used to graded writing, but I figured out the basic idea there within my first two papers in English 101. Well, I don’t know if I needed to get used to it, the idea isn’t really that complicated…
My mom used to send me back corrections on my English spelling (in letters I wrote her) until I was 30 years old… It’s the teacher state of mind…
Can I copy what you wrote me and put it in the blog?
Was I the one who said the calculator in the head thing?
If so you can use that as part of testing myself
Ah, yes. it says younger son
Yes, it was you. You used to jump on the black sofa we had and you always wanted me to give you math questions
I’m not sure how common / intrinsic that is…
Or if it’s just my style. I still like being tested
So if that’s natural to me, or something that was encouraged by not having it forced on me at a young age I’m not sure of
I think people like challenges if “failing” is not followed by punishment (a bad grade) or criticism. The whole video game industry is based on that. Without challenges life can be really boring.
Right, and casual games illustrate that even better than the overall industry: minesweeper, solitaire, angry birds…