Book of the Week "Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book of Homeschooling"

"Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book of Homeschooling"
by John Holt

This book.....  oh this book...  is just amazing. It's taking me longer than a week to read because the author says such amazing things, such profound things....  about children, about child-rearing, about learning,....  that I have to set it down and process for a bit before I can return and take in more.

For example last night, in the chapter titled "Learning in the World", he shares stories submitted years ago to his newsletter by people who are experiencing learning in the world. What does that mean? We tend to presume, based on experiences, that learning only happens in classrooms under the direction of teachers, but that's just not true. And once you open up access to the world to people (little and big) who are enthusiastic about learning, have curiousity, the possibilities are endless.

I feel compelled to share one of the stories with you because this, to me, is a perfect example of learning in the world:

We live in Washington, D.C., on Capitol Hill about two miles from the museums of the Smithsonian Institution. Susan and her mother walk there almost every day, observing, playing, meeting people, going to movies, listening to music, and riding the merry-go-round. They see a fantastic variety of nature movies. . . . They know art and history museums exhibit by exhibit. Susan can drag you through the history of the universe, through natural history, on up to the latest mars landing. They eat lunch near the water fountain, see the latest sculpture, take pictures of their favorite spots, marvel at the beautiful spring and fall days. They attend mime shows, tape record jazz concerts, ride the double-decker bus to their favorite "explore gallery" where things can be played and jumped in. Tuition is very cheap, we all have fun, and we all learn a great deal.

Susan lives in a world of marvelous abundance; her resources are unlimited. She has not been "socialized" by school to think that education is a supply of scarce knowledge to be competed for by hungry, controlled children. She doesn't play dumb "Schlemiel," . . . Our home and neighborhood are like a garden full of fresh fruit to be picked at arm's length by all who want to.

As it should be! Life and learning are inseparable! That we believe they can be compartmentalized is our biggest error! We are so focused on specializing that we're missing the big picture.

Teach Your Own: The John Holt Book Of Homeschooling by  Pat  John; Farenga - Paperback - 2003-04-01 - from CHG-PMD and

For anyone who has children in their life, in any way shape or form, I HIGHLY recommend this book. Children are little people with their own interests, their own thoughts, and their own learning. And this book can help you to recognize and facilitate that learning.

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