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View Full Version : Weekly Poll: Aren't all secular homeschoolers unschoolers?



Topsy
07-21-2010, 08:53 PM
I met her today. The world's most opinionated woman. I was pretty sure I had met her several times in recent years, but nope. Today, she came across my path. And although she had NO personal experience with homeschooling or even homeschoolers for that matter, she had VERY definite opinions about it. :mad:

When she discovered I was a secular homeschooler, and not just that, but ran a website for secular homeschoolers, she was adamant that I must be mistaken when I told her that secular homeschoolers had as many varied ways of homeschooling as there are secular homeschoolers. She had always passionately believed that all secular homeschoolers were unschoolers. And sadly, despite my best arguments, when I left her, she was no more convinced that she was wrong than she ever had been (which I seriously doubt was EVER).

So, this week's poll is simply to nurse my own battered ego. And we haven't had a "homeschooling style" poll yet anyway, so placate me, will ya??

(And if someone happens to run into this woman in a week or two, would you mind sharing a link to the results with her???):p

Vashti
07-21-2010, 09:14 PM
We're mostly Classical here, but I'm going to throw in a unit study or two and we start out with a lot of Montessori.

StartingOver
07-21-2010, 09:20 PM
We are mostly classical, totally secular. Although we stray off the path on occasion, we most definitely have never been true unschoolers. Although I think at least one of my children would have thrived as an unschooler, I am a box checker LOL.

And I am sure I have already met her LOL. She didn't care much for me in the end. ;-)

( I have been told I would argue with a fence post until it admitted I was right, if I felt I was right LOL. )

Melyssa
07-21-2010, 09:23 PM
Unschooling is not for me. We're eclectic I guess, and been online schoolers now for over a year. Next year we'll be using K12.

Busygoddess
07-21-2010, 09:49 PM
We are completely secular & very eclectic. I won't even consider unschooling my kids (not trying to insult anyone who does unschool, it just would never work for us). I am thinking about giving my homeschooling style a name, though. Actually giving it a name & sitting down to write out all the important aspects, my educational philosophy, how we meet the standards I set, etc. would give me another project to work on (I'm always adding new projects so that I stay busy), and I think it would be fun. :D

MamaB2C
07-21-2010, 09:58 PM
LOL, that lady cracks me up every time I meet her.

I am totally eclectic.

schwartzkari
07-21-2010, 10:20 PM
We are secular eclectic and use unit studies and...whatever else we want. LOL. My daughter wants to do "school at home" so unschooling will not work for her.

In my opinion, homeschooling is like a tree; unschooling is a different branch off of homeschooling. You have religious homeschoolers, secular homeschoolers, unschoolers and within those groups you are going to find other branches and twigs :)

Elizabeth
07-21-2010, 10:38 PM
We are eclectic and secular. I never planned to home school as I do work (although I do work at home). I have to use a variety of educational sources for my son - he is special needs so I really need to customize. I do strongly believe in a strong science core and thankfully he does love science.

MegRex
07-21-2010, 10:41 PM
Eek. We're unschoolers, but I don't agree with "If they aren't, they should be!" Even with the smiley face, I don't want to represent that way. So ... ?

JinxieFox
07-21-2010, 10:46 PM
Classical here. Assuming all secular homeschoolers are unschoolers is like assuming all faith-based homeschoolers are classical, but there are plenty of faith-based unschoolers!

It sounds like you met my husband's former commander's wife... She used to say the same things. Heh.

Theresa Holland Ryder
07-21-2010, 11:16 PM
That's pretty weird, but maybe no more weird than the people who I kept meeting for a while who would force little US flags on my kids. It was obvious to them that a secular homeschooler couldn't be patriotic, and probably my kids had never even seen a flag. My kids have also been given a Bible or two over the years, because secular homeschoolers are definitely all atheists who won't let Bibles into their houses!

We're mostly Classical. I probably should have picked the last one though, because for the most part we make it up as we go along. :)

obimomkenobi
07-21-2010, 11:18 PM
Same here, MegRex. Unschooling is great for some, a disaster for others. More power to whatever works for us all.

Jadzia66
07-22-2010, 12:00 AM
I tend to use a traditional or structured method with the main subjects (those that require grades and testing) and mix it up with the rest so I chose eclectic as we're not truly one specific style.

groovymom
07-22-2010, 12:16 AM
We are unschooling with a worksheet or two tossed in when my seven year old feels the need for one. This is not how we began our homeschool journey. However, after realizing that my kids needed a long deschooling period after leaving public school to be at home, it's what we slipped into and it works for us. There are nearly as many homeschool "styles" as there are homeschool families. Each one has to find what works for the kids.

dottieanna29
07-22-2010, 10:15 AM
Eclectic with Classical leanings here, with an ocassional unit study thrown in, some online stuff to give me breathing space and whatever else we feel like doing.

Realistically, in my house unschooling would be a lot of television, computer and Leapster time. I need the discipline of planning stuff out as much as the kids do.

Topsy
07-22-2010, 10:40 AM
Eek. We're unschoolers, but I don't agree with "If they aren't, they should be!" Even with the smiley face, I don't want to represent that way. So ... ?

I knew that would bother folks, Meg!! But I just had to do it!! ;)

Riceball_Mommy
07-22-2010, 10:46 AM
I think we're eclectic, our main curriculum is Calvert, which I think would be considered classical (not sure just think I read that somewhere). Though I do substitute a bit and I add in some extras. I like having a base of structure but I will follow some random interests that pop up.

Jilly
07-22-2010, 11:08 AM
We are classical homeschoolers, although this year I have decided to become a more relaxed homeschooler. I am not sure how that will go, but I am looking forward to the change.

Marmalade
07-22-2010, 01:13 PM
We do Marmalade Home Schooling. I'm thinking of writing a book on it.

Kidding-I chose the last one-just try to define me!

MegRex
07-22-2010, 01:49 PM
I knew that would bother folks, Meg!! But I just had to do it!! ;)

Fair enough. But you'll never get my clicky! Nevah!! ;)

ColourfulThreads
07-22-2010, 05:04 PM
I choose the last one, because I can, in good conscious, click several of the other options.

I am afraid, however, that even I tend to Mrs Opinionated's opinion. We live in a small urban area and I'm having trouble finding secular homeschoolers who do not define themselves as unschoolers. And not only do they define themselves as such, but they are very firm that unschooling is the best way to learn and those of us that don't unschool just have hangups that we really need to get past in order to really free our children.

The rest of the homeschoolers in our area are very conservative faith based types and we are having trouble finding a place to fit in.

It's so nice to see that I'm not alone in this crazy choice.

CyndiLJ
07-23-2010, 01:09 AM
We have 5 kids, 2 of whom are new ELL learners, 1 special needs, 2 advanced. Our family is eclectsic so our homeschooling is as well! We use a combination of living books, unit studies, workbooks...you name it, we've got it or done it...and we have only been homeschooling 9 months! But with such a wide variety of academic levels amd abilities we have no choice.

Besides, it's never boring!

paganmomblog
07-23-2010, 08:01 AM
Wow, how can someone actually think all are unschoolers? Is this chick even aware of what unschooling is? GAH I hate when ignorance rears it ugly head!

Having said that, we are totally eclectic.

Firefly_Mom
07-24-2010, 01:39 AM
If you go buy John Holt's definition of unschooling, then yes, we're unschoolers. However, unschooling has taken a very different definition since then, that no unschooler who goes by the current definition would define us as such.

hockeymom
07-24-2010, 06:11 AM
I agree with Firefly_Mom, it depends on how you define it. I put down "just try to define our style" because we seem to be all over the map. DS likes structure, but this summer we ditched that and have spent our entire time chasing rabbit trails. He doesn't realize how much he learns this way, but I see it and it's a totally natural for us to spend our days. In the fall, though, we'll throw in worksheets for math and spelling, but I think we'll continue on interest-led paths for most of the rest of it. We are never NOT learning in this house! :)

Disclosure: DS is only 7 and I think it's more important for him to get a broad sense of understanding about a wide range of things at this age. As he gets older and wants to dig deeper, we may take a more structured approach, but for now the emphasis is on the pleasure of learning for its own sake.

themumathome
07-24-2010, 08:28 AM
we are eclectic, I like to find bits from all over but would love to find easy to follow fun curriculums. I would like to use more DVD's so if anyone can recommend any courses on dvd for 7-11 year olds that would be cool.

mommykicksbutt
07-25-2010, 12:49 AM
Son loves structure for his schooling, he thrives with it to a degree. We could never be unschoolers. However, structure does not mean that it is not interest guided!

I choose eclectic. We are a little classical, some online/computer based materials, a pinch of unit studies, some learn as we discover, just a little of this and a little of that. We take the best of what is available and make it our own. I know what son likes, I know his learning style, I know his personality and mine. We have a great mix that is difficult to define other than eclectic.

Annie
07-26-2010, 02:47 AM
If you see this woman again, would you ask her to explain the huge box of parent manuals and student workbooks that arrive at my post office each year? Is the company run by psychics who happen to know what each of my sons is going to want to study over the next nine months? It is most definitely secular, as are we. . . .

Ultimately, we are eclectic. I have no loyalty to any particular ideology. I'll pull whatever method in my arsenal I need to make a connection for each of my sons and will change when I'm no longer making that connection.

QueenBee
07-26-2010, 12:57 PM
I voted for Classical, as we've been mostly a loose version of this. However, the winds of change are blowing around our house so who knows what I'd have to choose at the end of next year! =)


I am afraid, however, that even I tend to Mrs Opinionated's opinion. We live in a small urban area and I'm having trouble finding secular homeschoolers who do not define themselves as unschoolers. And not only do they define themselves as such, but they are very firm that unschooling is the best way to learn and those of us that don't unschool just have hangups that we really need to get past in order to really free our children.

I have to say that I find this to be very true in my area as well - for the secular homeschoolers. And I have had similar experiences with the attitude that I'm doing harm to my children by not being relaxed enough to unschool, unparent, etc... Sigh. I usually ignore it. It just wouldn't work for me, so be it.

Gwenhwyfar
08-01-2010, 08:24 AM
Voted for the last option, although 'eclectic' could work a lot of the time... :)

as for the lady - kinda struck me funny because the most devoted unschooler that I've ever met was also one of the most devoted Christians I've ever met.

(devoted? devout? more coffee plz.)