First it wasÂ the notification byÂ Daryl that the Anderson Cooper program on CNN would be doing a segment on unschooling last Friday,Â soÂ I stayed up past my bedtimeÂ to watch.Â It wasn’t aired.Â Daryl’s not to blame, though, as the dateline on the report is, indeed,Â last Friday.Â At last notice,Â the air date is tonight, Monday, 10pm eastern.Â
An interesting part of the article is that John Holt got a mention.
- CNN.com, 27 January 2006, No school, no books, no teacher’s dirty looks
The term "unschooling" was first coined in 1977 by John Holt, an education reformer, the founder of Holt Associates and author of the book, "Teach Your Own."
Holt felt traditional home-schooling didn’t go far enough, He believed parents should not duplicate schools in their homes. He favored an education more freewheeling in nature, one that depends on the child for direction
Next, regarding unschooling (and we’ll see if other news outletsÂ pick up the thread), it’s a newspaperÂ article on unschooling.Â
For the most part the article is positive, but it is littered with little learnedÂ landmines about the fears of critics, about how Kentucky homeschoolers don’t have to take state-mandated tests, or about how they don’t have toÂ learn specific skills by specific ‘dates,’ by which I assume the reporter means that unschooled children are allowed to learn at their own pace.
One suchÂ gaffe is easily batted away.
- Courier-Journal, Louisville, Kentucky, 30 January 2006, Interests guide learning in home-schooling system
Making up a gap in college
Some unschoolers find they must take remedial coursework in college.
Unschoolers find they must take remedial coursework?Â Why the surprise?Â Â So do many other freshmen.Â
According to an online PowerPoint presentation, titled, "Beyond the Rhetoric of Adequate Preparation: A Spotlight on Remedial College Course Work," the first remedial college course was established in 1849Â at the University ofÂ Wisconsin.Â No, I didn’t mis-type 1949.Â 1849.Â I guess that puts paid to that irritating email in which the recipient is beaten about the synapses and neurons for not knowing information on a test from 1895.Â
But back to the PowerPoint presentation, which has aÂ salient quotation:Â "The percentage of entering post-secondary students needing remedial courses has not changed since 1983."Â To give encouragement to those, like myself, who areÂ in need of some remediation, I will attempt a calculation, in full view of the audience.Â Nineteen-eighty-three was 23 years ago.Â I’m guessingÂ few of thoseÂ students were homeschooled, much less unschooled.
That any student requires a remedial course is not news.
In any case, unschooling is poking its nose out of the homeschooling closet.Â Keep an eye out for more reports.
Hat tip to Tammy for the link.