I know lots of friends who would disagree with this. They believe that their kids will thank them in the future for pushing them to do music or sports or art or whatever lessons. I WANT to believe Laura. And I do practice what she’s preaching. But I do worry that I’m not doing the right thing. However, since I’m not into coercion in general and for learning in particular I would be hypocritical to take a different path from the one Laura advocates. And how much achievement, how good can a child feel if he/she only succeeds if they’re ‘strongly persuaded’ to do that thing? Maybe they would be happy to do music classes, but not that instrument or voice lessons instead? Maybe they would do a sport but not that sport etc…? The problem is, you don’t know if you did it right, for your particular child, until it’s too late, until they grow up and either say, ‘Thanks so much for not pushing me into doing anything’ or ‘Thanks so much for making me do xyz’. Perhaps it’s evident from the start what kind of child one has. If after pushing the kid says, ‘I really enjoyed that, thanks for making me do it’ (or in so many words), perhaps you know you’re on the right path. But my child has never said anything at all like that so I think perhaps he’s the type who needs to find his own way. I certainly have never been thankful for being pushed to do anything and anyway, rarely was. Who knows? At the moment, I am all for trying to find my kids’s fascinations and helping them pursue them only for as long and as far as they want to do so.

Laura Grace Weldon

 learning happens when it's "just right"

“Young children seem to recognize that knowledge is an essential shared resource, like air or water. They demand a fair share. They actively espouse the right to gain skill and comprehension in a way that’s necessary for them at the time. Often children seem to reject what they aren’t ready to learn, only to return to the same skill or concept later with ease. This is not only an expression of autonomy, it’s a clear indicator that each child is equipped with an learning guidance system of his or her own.”

I wrote these words two years ago in my book Free Range Learning. This concept is now being called the “Goldilocks effect.” According to a study published in the journal PLoS ONE, humans are cued to ignore information that is too simple or too complex. Instead we’re drawn to and best able learn from situations that…

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About homeschoolingpenny

Hi and welcome! My name is Penny and I used to live in Bahrain but In November 2012 moved to Dubai and now we live in Granada, Spain! If you want to contact me my email is pjmontford@hotmail.com. I recommend you start my blog on 'Day 1' but please enjoy whatever you dip into. 23 February 2012 marked the first day of no more school FOREVER for my two kids. Edward, who is nearly 10 had attended a variety of schools since he was very little. Petra, who is now 6, has never gone to school. On this date we decided Edward was never going back to school and Petra never would go to school. We hope to successfully homeschool from this day forward, although we would consider an alternative school as an option- if there was some amazing Sudbury or other really alternative school. Actually, I prefer the term 'home learning' than 'homeschool' because I don't like to think of school coming into our home. In fact, I hope to go further and guide/learn alongside, rather than teach, my kids using the 'unschooling' philosophy to instill a lifelong love of learning in them. We lived in the Middle East and now Spain all of which are very challenging places to home educate. This is an exciting journey that I used to blog about regularly, at first it was on an almost daily basis. Please join me on our travels and I hope we might be able to help each other out along the way. I certainly hope I can be a source of support and comfort and, in time, knowledge to all potential/presently participating homeschoolers/home educators/unschoolers. Good luck to us all! If you want to read about why I started home educating, why I pulled my son out of a 'very good' private school mid-term, how I felt at the very start and how my philosophy has evolved, please start from 'Day 1' of the blog. Please do post comments at the end of any days that you read. Your opinion is valuable and it's great to start up debate amongst other people commenting too, however old the post. Thank you for visiting homeschoolingmiddleeast.
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5 Responses to

  1. Korey says:

    I’m extremely pleased to find this website. I need to to thank you for ones time just for this wonderful read!! I definitely liked every bit of it and i also have you book-marked to see new information on your website.

  2. Hello, i feel that i noticed you visited my site so i got here to return the prefer?
    .I am trying to to find issues to enhance my site!
    I guess its ok to make use of some of your ideas!!

  3. YourNetDoc says:

    Hi Penny! Great blog you have there. I am not sure how many parents would actually want to go for home schooling given the exposure kids get at schools these days.

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