Unschooling.com

Unschooling Quotes

#1

“All the time you are in school, you learn through experience how to live in a dictatorship.” ~ Grace Llewellyn

"If a single teacher can’t teach all the subjects, then how can you expect a single student to learn all the subjects?"

“Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.” ~ Frederick Douglass

“If you don’t know where you want to go, then it doesn’t matter which path you take.” ~ Lewis Carroll, [Alice in Wonderland]

“The most potent force for change… is the growing recognition of millions of adults that their own impoverished expectations and frustrations came, in large measure, from their schooling.” ~ Marilyn Ferguson

“If you wanted to create an education environment that was directly opposed to what the brain was good at doing, you probably would create something like a classroom.” ~ John J. Medina, Author of the New York Times Bestseller, [Brain Rules]

“Forced association is not socialization.” - Adele Carroll

“I have never let my schooling interfere with my education.” ~ Mark Twain

“My grandmother wanted me to get a good education, so she kept me as far away from schools as possible.” ~ Margaret Mead

“When a flower doesn’t bloom, you fix the environment in which it grows, not the flower.” ~ Alexander Den Heijer

“Education is a process of living and not a preparation for future living.” ~ John Dewey

"If our American way of life fails the child, it fails us all." ~ Pearl S. Buck

“Creativity is a type of learning process where the teacher and pupil are located in the same individual.” ~ Arthur Koestler

“Self-education is, I firmly believe, the only kind of education there is.” ~ Isaac Asimov

“All the world is my school and all humanity is my teacher.” - George Whitman

"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself." ~ John Dewey

“Birds fly, fish swim, and children play.” ~ Garry L. Landreth, [Play Therapy: The Art of the Relationship]

“A child educated only at school is an uneducated child.” ~ George Santayana

“Unstructured, open-ended play is where the magic of childhood happens.” ~ Alana Pace

“Education: free and compulsory – what a way to learn logic!” ~ Frank van Dun

“We cannot learn without pain.” ~ Aristotle

"Don’t limit a child to your own learning, for he was born in another time." ~ Rabindranath Tagore

“It is among the commonplaces of education that we often first cut off the living root and then try to replace its natural functions by artificial means. Thus we suppress the child’s curiosity and then when he lacks a natural interest in learning he is offered special coaching for his scholastic difficulties.” ~ Alice Miller

“Drop out of school before your mind rots from exposure to our mediocre educational system. Forget about the Senior Prom and go to the library and educate yourself if you’ve got any guts.” ~ Frank Zappa

“Homeschooling is an act of liberation and an act of passion. It is an occasion to walk away from institutional images of life and to embrace a vision that is filled with personal meaning and unmistakable truths for our families. The quality of awareness that comes from the heart is more dependable… Homeschooling… is about helping make it possible for children to reach maturity with healthy, curious, fully conscious minds.” ~ Earl Gary Stevens

"Sadly, children’s passion for thinking often ends when they encounter a world that seeks to educate them for conformity and obedience only." ~ Bell Hooks

“I was undisciplined by birth, never would I bend, even in my tender youth, to a rule. It was at home I learned the little I know. Schools always appeared to me like a prison, and never could I make up my mind to stay there, not even for four hours a day, when the sunshine was inviting, the sea smooth, and when it was joy to run about the cliffs in the free air, or to paddle in the water.” ~ Claude Monet

“Most people, most of the time, learn most of what they know about science and technology outside of school.” ~ National Science Foundation

“If we value independence, if we are disturbed by the growing conformity of knowledge, of values, of attitudes, which our present system induces, then we may wish to set up conditions of learning which make for uniqueness, for self-direction, and for self-initiated learning.” ~ Carl Rogers

“If there is anything we wish to change in the child, we should first examine it and see whether it is not something that could be better changed in ourselves.” ~ C.G. Jung

“The idea that people should study for about 12 years and then start living is more deeply seated in our culture than many people realize.” ~ Larry and Susan Kaseman

“I suppose it is because nearly all children go to school nowadays, and have things arranged for them, that they seem so forlornly unable to produce their own ideas.” ~ Agatha Christie

"I would say that living an interesting life is more instructive than formal learning could ever be." ~ Lesley Clark

"There should be no more pressure on a child to learn than there is on a rose to grow.
I can’t coerce a rosebud to open its petals and bloom before its time.
It simply unfolds on its own.
But even before it buds, one can tell that a rose is a rose, distinct and unique." ~ Debra Elramey

"We learn because we want to learn, because it’s important to us, because it’s natural, and because it’s impossible to live in the world and not learn." ~ Peggy Pirro

"How colorfully and scientifically our generation talks down to the little child!
What insipid, stupid, dull stories are trotted out…
We don’t respect the children’s thinking or let them come to any conclusions themselves!
We ply them with endless questions, the ones we’ve thought up, instead of being silent and letting the child’s questions bubble up with interest." ~ S Schaeffer Macaulay: For the Children’s Sake

"We are all born ignorant, but one must work hard to remain stupid." Benjamin Franklin

"Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune." ~ Jim Rohn

"It’s amazing what kids can accomplish without shackles." ~ Jim Babb

"College isn’t the place to go for ideas." ~ Helen Keller

"In large states public education will always be mediocre, for the same reason that in large kitchens the cooking is usually bad." ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

"We, the people, are teaching ourselves" ~ Linda Dobson

"Parents can’t choose the mates of their children or the behavior of their children. You actually can’t choose anything for your children without disempowering them." ~ Ester Hicks

"I don’t know how well this will translate, but it occured to me that the people with no certifcates (hackers) were breaking into the systems the people with certificates (professionals with degrees) have been building for years.
What does this tell us about the value of certificates and degrees? Not that they have no value, that’s silly, but it does seem to suggest the value of the piece of paper is the least significant part of the person wielding the skillset."

"It’s a tragedy how badly some people are brainwashed into believing an institutionalized setting akin to the prison system is the only way a child will grow up to be a “functioning adult.”

“Creativity is just connecting things. When you ask creative people how they did something, they feel a little guilty because they didn’t really do it, they just saw something. It seemed obvious to them after a while. That’s because they were able to connect experiences they’ve had and synthesize new things. And the reason they were able to do that was that they’ve had more experiences or they have thought more about their experiences than other people. Unfortunately, that’s too rare a commodity. A lot of people in our industry haven’t had very diverse experiences. So they don’t have enough dots to connect, and they end up with very linear solutions without a broad perspective on the problem. The broader one’s understanding of the human experience, the better design we will have.” ~ Steve Jobs

"Nothing in this world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not: nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not: the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent." ~ Calvin Coolidge

"There is no end to education. It is not that you read a book, pass an examination, and finish with education. The whole of life, from the moment you are born to the moment you die, is a process of learning." ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti

"The goal of education is not to increase the amount of knowledge but to create the possibilities for a child to invent and discover, to create men who are capable of doing new things." ~ Jean Piaget

“Children learn how to speak by listening to others speak. They learn how to converse by watching and listening to others converse. They learn how to hold books by watching other people hold books.” ~ Becca Challman

“The whole educational and professional training system is a very elaborate filter, which just weeds out people who are too independent, and who think for themselves, and who don’t know how to be submissive, and so on – because they’re dysfunctional to the institutions.” ~ Noam Chomsky

“Education is a private matter between the person and the world of knowledge and experience, and has little to do with school or college.” ~ Lillian Smith

“I think the big mistake in schools is trying to teach children anything, and by using fear as the basic motivation. Fear of getting failing grades, fear of not staying with your class, etc. Interest can produce learning on a scale compared to fear as a nuclear explosion to a firecracker.” ~ Stanley Kubrik

“Homeschooling is not about sitting at the kitchen table with a pile of textbooks all day, recreating school in the isolation of the home. (Unless, for some reason, you want it to be.) For many–maybe most–families, homeschooling is about getting out and about. It is about opening to possibilities, about finding learning opportunities around every corner, and about having the ‘luxury’ of making the kinds of community connections that are sustaining and enjoyable. It is about exploring the world with open eyes and minds, trying new things, going new places, meeting new people. It is a veritable kaleidoscope of experiences that provide a unique educational path for every child–and parent. You can find or create anything you want, and have a blast doing it.” ~ Shay Seaborne

“Thank goodness I was never sent to school; it would have rubbed off some of the originality.” ~ Beatrix Potter

”Today for Show and Tell, I’ve brought a tiny marvel of nature: a single snowflake. I think we might all learn a lesson from how this utterly unique and exquisite crystal turns into an ordinary, boring molecule of water, just like every other one, when you bring it in the classroom. And now, while the analogy sinks in, I’ll be leaving you drips and going outside.” ~ Calvin, from Calvin & Hobbes Comic

“Nothing in education is so astonishing as the amount of ignorance that accumulates in the form of inert facts.” ~ Henry Adams

“Growing up, I couldn’t understand the confusion. Wasn’t it obvious that I could learn math and physics if I wanted to? Couldn’t my uncle see that I had no use for chemistry but that if I did, I’d learn it? Why did anyone care, anyway? And why did people ask me if I knew math and English but they didn’t ask whether I knew about good nutrition or how to shingle a roof?” ~ Sarabeth Matilsky

“Before children go to school in the first place, all of their natural learning systems are intact. This is what we can see from families who have homeschooled their kids from the very beginning. However, once children are in school for about three years, they are forced to shift over to a very unnatural system to survive the emphasis on memorization and the daily stress, rigidity, and humiliation of classroom life.” ~ Judy Garvey in GWS

“Schooling was influenced by the idea that self-directed learning created ‘dangerous,’ free-thinking, intelligent people who would make sure the government never became more powerful than the people.” ~ Laurie A. Couture

“Just as eating against one’s will is injurious to health, so studying without a liking for it spoils the memory, and it retains nothing it takes in.” ~ Leonardo da Vinci

“The parent knows that the child cannot be artificially motivated to learn; they know that he is already motivated by the strongest driving force on earth: his inner intent.” ~ Joseph Chilton Pearce

“The belief that young people are incapable of making reasonable decisions is a cornerstone of our system of compulsory, closely monitored education.” ~ Peter O. Gray, [Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life]

“Everyone who has ever been to school knows that school is prison, but almost nobody beyond school age says it is. It’s not polite. We all tiptoe around the truth because admitting it would make us seem cruel and would point a finger at well-intentioned people doing what they believe to be essential. . . . A prison, according to the common, general definition, is any place of involuntary confinement and restriction of liberty. In school, as in adult prisons, the inmates are told exactly what they must do and are punished for failure to comply. Actually, students in school must spend more time doing exactly what they are told than is true of adults in penal institutions. Another difference, of course, is that we put adults in prison because they have committed a crime, while we put children in school because of their age.” ~ Peter O. Gray, [Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life]

“Going to school is rarely a choice at all, but rather just the thing you do because everyone else does it.” ~ Brian Huskie, [A White Rose: A Soldier’s Story of Love, War, and School]

“How many of us have read history, and shook our heads and puffed our chest, and said, “If I were alive during that period, I would never have done those things to those people!” Yet here we are, doing those things to those people.” ~ Brian Huskie, [A White Rose: A Soldier’s Story of Love, War, and School]

“I tend to agree with Robert Frost when he says, ‘Education is the ability to listen to almost anything without losing your temper or your self-confidence.’ By this definition, I don’t think anyone can claim that we are successfully educating this next generation.” ~ Brian Huskie, [A White Rose: A Soldier’s Story of Love, War, and School]

“Maybe you’ve noticed what I’ve noticed, and thought it strange, or dismissed it as youthful foolishness or that you were missing some critical piece of information that would reveal itself with age and wisdom – that is: every single teacher believes feverishly in the importance of the content of their class, and furthermore, believes that their assessment of you in their class is a direct measure of your capacity for future success, while simultaneously not having a clue as to the content of virtually any other discipline in the school. They will boldly state things like, That’s math, I’m an English teacher or That’s literature, I’m a biology teacher, practically admitting out loud that nothing learned in school is important (except, of course, the course they are teaching).” ~ Brian Huskie, [A White Rose: A Soldier’s Story of Love, War, and School]

“Compulsion – nonconsensual education – requires violence; it requires complete control over what students put into their brain, the people they are exposed to, the places they are authorized to be, and oftentimes, with free lunch programs, what food goes into their body. Compulsory systems are resentful of families who do not enforce homework or dress code policies; are reluctant to allow parents into its buildings except once or twice a year on special “open house” days; and fear parents who choose to homeschool.” ~ Brian Huskie, [A White Rose: A Soldier’s Story of Love, War, and School]

“The most important question I ask myself as a parent is this. How can I best help my children be fully themselves and happy with who they are in the world, however they show up.” ~ Lehla Eldridge, [Jump, Fall, Fly, From Schooling to Homeschooling to Unschooling]

“I no longer believe that the current education system is able to equip our children for a fast-moving future. Technology has evolved so rap-idly in the last five years that to put a child in an education system that was designed for a future that will most likely no longer exist for the majority, seems almost absurd.” ~ Lehla Eldridge, [JUMP, FALL, FLY From Schooling to Homeschooling to Unschooling]

“If the educational system can claim anything consistently it would be that it is masterful at evoking a destructive axis of boredom and anxiety accounting for the increasing levels of mental health problems in young people.” ~ Anthony Eldridge-Rogers, [Jump, Fall, Fly, From Schooling to Homeschooling to Unschooling]

“Improvement makes strait roads, but the crooked roads without Improvement, are roads of Genius.”
~ William Blake, [The Marriage of Heaven and Hell]

“To understand a child we have to watch him at play, study him in his different moods; we cannot project upon him our own prejudices, hopes and fears, or mould him to fit the pattern of our desires. If we are constantly judging the child according to our personal likes and dislikes, we are bound to create barriers and hindrances in our relationship with him and in his relationships with the world. Unfortunately, most of us desire to shape the child in a way that is gratifying to our own vanities and idiosyncrasies; we find varying degrees of comfort and satisfaction in exclusive ownership and domination.” ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti, [Education and the Significance of Life]
_________________________________________________________________________________
“When people say that school prepares children for the real world, what’s implied is that it is the difficult parts of school (doing things you don’t want to do, forced interaction with peers, following rules that you don’t believe in) that are important. What’s implied is that the real world is going to be an unhappy place and that being treated unfairly by people is a part of life.

It may be a part of life in school, but it is not a part of our lives. School is as far away from the real world as possible. In school we learn that we cannot control our own destinies and that it is acceptable to let others govern our lives. In the real world we can take responsibility for choosing our own paths and governing our own lives. The real world is what we make it.” ~ Rue Kream, [The Unschooling Unmanual]
_________________________________________________________________________________

“Break the teacher certification monopoly so anyone with something valuable to teach can teach it. Nothing is more important than this.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [99 Question and Answers About Unschooling: The World Is Your Child’s Classroom]

“Learning and education are a normal part of everyday life and do not need a vast expensive bureaucracy to force them to happen.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [99 Question and Answers About Unschooling: The World Is Your Child’s Classroom]

“The simplest description is that Unschooling means a way of bringing up children using free play and child-directed activity to develop the child’s own individual talents and creativity by supportively following up the child’s own interests – without coercion, compulsion, manipulation, regimentation, constant testing and grading and rank-ordering, or top-down authoritarianism.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [99 Question and Answers About Unschooling: The World Is Your Child’s Classroom]

“There are as many approaches to unschooling as there are people, by design. A child is supported to read when ready and interested, not on another’s timetable, for example. He can and will be encouraged to pursue a wide range of interests, based on his interests, such as free play, inventing, experimenting scientifically, video gaming, role modeling through friendship, spiritual development through inquiry of self and others, athletics, learning to trust himself and others.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [99 Question and Answers About Unschooling: The World Is Your Child’s Classroom]

“Many of the world’s greatest geniuses all had in common that they were pulled from the school environment. They were freed to discover the undiscovered. They had the imagination to ‘see’ a different way and the drive to try to build what they had seen.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [Born To Learn]

“The primary difference I see is that unschooling is an invitation to awaken and ennoble capabilities that exist within the child. Where traditional schooling is to fill the child with facts that we, as a collective have decided upon.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [Born To Learn]

“I simply stepped out of the way and maintained my courage and my position in the face of constant disagreement, voiced opinion and attack. I held true and I stood my ground. I maintained my convictions and my commitment to allowing them to live in the kingdom of childhood. I protected them from outside influence and allowed their imaginations to soar. I instilled a lifelong love of learning in them and I shared my passion for reading. I allowed them to choose what they wanted to study and I provided the resources for them to delve in, unguided and undisturbed for however long they needed to gather what they believed to be enough understanding to satisfy their own personal drive.” ~ Kytka Hilmar-Jezek, [Born To Learn]

“Cause and effect is the basis of my education, leading me to an essence far more profound than any rule of societal conditioning.” ~ KA Chinery

“My success or failure in school was dependent on my ability to follow a curriculum that felt as if it had very little to do with me as a human being.” ~ Ben Hewitt, [Home Grown: Adventures in Parenting off the Beaten Path, Unschooling, and Reconnecting with the Natural World]

“There is nothing to be gained by pretending that academic involvement is necessary, or even always desirable, in the quest for truth and knowledge.” ~ Christopher Langan

“Education is a system. Learning is an ongoing every day process.” ~ Mommy Moo Moo

“Of all the things I have learned since becoming a parent(and sometimes, it feels as if this might be everything I’ve learned), perhaps the hardest to accept is that it is selfish and possibly even dangerous to desire particular outcomes for our children.” ~ Ben Hewitt

“The philosophy of project-based homeschooling — this particular approach to helping children become strong thinkers, learners, and doers — is dependent upon the interest and the enthusiastic participation and leadership of the learners themselves, the children.” ~ Lori McWilliam Pickert

“To learn how to do, we need something real to focus on — not a task assigned by someone else, but something we want to create, something we want to understand. Not an empty exercise but a meaningful, self-chosen undertaking.” ~ Lori McWilliam Pickert
_________________________________________________________________________________
“Children, even when very young, have the capacity for inventive thought and decisive action. They have worthwhile ideas. They make perceptive connections. They’re individuals from the start: a unique bundle of interests, talents, and preferences. They have something to contribute. They want to be a part of things.

"It’s up to us to give them the opportunity to express their creativity, explore widely, and connect with their own meaningful work.” ~ Lori McWilliam Pickert
_________________________________________________________________________________

“Allowing children to learn about what interests them is good, but helping them do it in a meaningful, rigorous way is better. Freedom and choice are good, but a life steeped in thinking, learning, and doing is better. It’s not enough to say, “Go, do whatever you like.” To help children become skilled thinkers and learners, to help them become people who make and do, we need a life centered around those experiences. We need to show them how to accomplish the things they want to do. We need to prepare them to make the life they want.” ~ Lori McWilliam Pickert

“Each of us is born with a crazy passion to learn. Each of us craves knowledge of our world and our place within it. We learn because we want to learn, because it’s important to us, because it’s natural, and because it’s impossible to live in the world and not learn. Then along comes school to mess up a beautiful thing.” ~ ps pirro, [101 Reasons Why I Am An Unschooler]

“If the emotions are free the intellect will look after itself” ~ A.S. Neill

“Many parents aren’t all that accustomed to being patient and present for their kids anymore, if only because they’re simply not given the opportunity to be patient and present. Jobs get in the way. School gets in the way. After-school activities get in the way. As I have learned—as I am still learning—patience and presence are muscles that must be developed and exercised regularly.” ~ Ben Hewitt, [Home Grown: Adventures in Parenting off the Beaten Path, Unschooling, and Reconnecting with the Natural World]

“If there is value in the standardized, performance-based curriculums utilized by the vast majority of schools, that value is realized primarily by the institutions themselves and by the economic and social structures that are fed by standardized learning.” ~ Ben Hewitt, [Home Grown: Adventures in Parenting off the Beaten Path, Unschooling, and Reconnecting with the Natural World]

“the business of being a child in this country is rapidly disappearing into an abyss that consists not only of programs and tests but also of extracurricular activities.” ~ Ben Hewitt, [Home Grown: Adventures in Parenting off the Beaten Path, Unschooling, and Reconnecting with the Natural World]

“What if the point were not to know as much as possible but to feel as much as possible?” ~ Ben Hewitt, [Home Grown: Adventures in Parenting off the Beaten Path, Unschooling, and Reconnecting with the Natural World]

"Schooling kids is like exercising dogs on a leash. They’ll never reach their full potential because of the powers holding them back." ~ Unschooling.com

“Normality is a paved road: It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.” ~ Vincent van Gogh

“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.” ~ Joseph Chilton Pearce

"Climb the mountain so you can see the world, not so the world can see you.” ~ David McCullough Jr.

“Disobedience, in the eyes of any one who has read history, is man’s original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress has been made, through disobedience and through rebellion.” ~ Oscar Wilde