deschooling, Schooling, Unschooling

Much can be learned by unschoolers from Indigenous pedagogies

If you haven’t checked out Tyson Yunkaporta’s web site: http://8ways.wikispaces.com/ then you really need to give it a check out.

Indigenous ways of teaching/learning are very unschooling-friendly.

The best teaching day I had in my whole teaching career was when I employed two of Yunkaporta’s motifs.  I had a great time, and the students in my class had a great time, and time flew, and the day looked nothing like a day at school.  By the end of the day we had learned so much that was really interesting, and the students remembered everything that we had learned.  It was a class of Indigenous students who had previously not produced very much school work.  However, they produced pages and pages of stuff in response to the fun learning that we all had.

The best un-school day in my school career (from my Master of Education (Leadership) dissertation: Warlpiri Business as Pedagogy: A Learning Journey :

“I will illustrate how the application of Indigenous pedagogies makes a difference in the classroom of Indigenous students, by sharing a personal experience. I recorded the following on Thursday 12 July, 2012. It is a reflection on my experience of consciously applying two of Tyson Yunkaporta’s 8 ways Indigenous pedagogies (Yunkaporta, 2009, pp. 35-38). The experience had previously taken place on Monday 28th June, 2012, and it proved to be the most satisfying experience that I have ever had in a classroom.  I had read Tyson Yunkaporta’s (2009) PhD thesis, the night before, Sunday 27th June, 2012, so I was not overly familiar with his ideas, but they rang true, and the two that I used had particularly stuck in my head.

“The students in the class that I worked in were all speakers of Central Desert Indigenous Languages, and English is possibly their third, or fourth or subsequent language. The student cohort was an ungraded Middle School cohort (Years 7-10), made up of boys and girls, notorious for their disengagement from mainstream classroom learning situations. Some of the students were barely literate, and reluctant copiers, and did not exhibit independent writing behaviours. The following is an account of what transpired:

“I work in a private school that is funded at the level of other private schools, but does not collect fees from the parents (because they are amongst the most disadvantaged minority group in Australia). Getting teaching relief for the school is very difficult due to the isolation of the city in which the school is found. The teacher for the ungraded Middle School class phoned in on the Monday morning to say that he would be away for three days for health reasons. As the Curriculum Coordinator, it was my responsibility to act as relief teacher for the class. However, I was only notified half an hour before the school day began of the teacher’s absence. To add difficulty to impossibility, I have morning duties, which have to be attended to, and they occur during the half hour that would otherwise be used for preparation for lessons for the day. There was no time to gather resources. There was no time to sketch a plan for the day. There were no available instructions from the classroom teacher to follow.

“Two and a half years earlier, I had been the Middle School teacher in the same school, and memories of the very difficult times experienced trying to teach Middle School aged Indigenous students, using the strategies learned in teacher training, flooded back to me with a rush. Oh the deep, gut-wrenching dread!

“As the bell rang for the school day to begin, I walked into the classroom with some of the early arrivers. The students meandered around the classroom, while I drew two of Tyson Yunkaporta’s 8 Ways icons (Yunkaporta, 2009, pp. 35-38) on the blackboard (blue-tongued lizard icon and returning boomerang icon).

“Using the classroom interactive whiteboard (IWB) with internet connection, I then located clips of blue-tongue lizards, watching short excerpts until one was found with two blue-tongue lizards walking across the screen.

“This was viewed several times, and acted as a stimulus to draw the interest of the students as they variously arrived over the first thirty minutes of the day. When sufficient students gathered around the IWB, observations were made about the behaviour of the lizards, and students began to engage in the conversation that opened up. When there seemed to be general interest in the conversation, I pointed out the blue-tongue lizard icon on the blackboard, and commenced doing an improvised dance, imitating the blue-tongue lizard’s movements in search of food. Some discussion was then had around the lessons we can learn from blue-tongue lizards, and how our food is knowledge, and if we ingest knowledge, and allow it to become a part of our lives, it can make us strong.  The returning boomerang icon was then pointed out to the students. One of the students asked the question, “How does a boomerang come back?” I entered the question into a google search, and came up with the Charlie Drake song, “My Boomerang Won’t Come Back.” After listening to the song, the students thought it was quite funny. I continued to google the question, and came up with a cartoon clip that demonstrated the aero-dynamics of the flight of a boomerang. It also demonstrated the techniques of throwing and catching boomerangs.

“I took a sheet of scrap paper, and blew across the top of the sheet whilst it was held at one end. At rest, the paper curved downwards. However, when I blew across the top of the paper, it rose to the horizontal position. When I stopped blowing, the paper sank to its curved position again. This was repeated several times, and the students were then invited to find scrap pieces of paper, and try the same experiment.  I then showed the students how to make a ruler boomerang, by tying two wooden rulers, with their curved sides facing in the same way, in the middle with string. This made an X shape. All of the students then made their own ruler boomerangs.

“The class then went outside to the school oval, and the boomerangs were tested. It was observed that in whichever direction the curved side of the ruler boomerang was facing, that was the direction the ruler boomerang tended towards. It was established that the boomerang needed to be thrown vertically, with the flat side facing away from the body, and this enabled the boomerang to curve across the body, and eventually to come back to the thrower.

“Initially the girls sat on the sides of the oval and watched the boys. No attempt was made to coax the girls to participate, but as they saw how much fun the boys were having experimenting with different throwing techniques, the girls soon joined in and had a lot of fun also.

“The class returned to the classroom, and there was some lively discussion about what was observed. We talked about the principle of lift, using the language of: “When air moves over a curved surface, it has to travel a longer distance than the air that moves over the flat surface. This makes the air moving over the curved surface weak. The arms of the boomerang try to fill up the space made by the weak air, which is what makes the boomerang curve in that direction.” (It should be noted that I have subsequently been advised that my explanation was poor science. This was the explanation I was given in school 45 years ago, but not being a Science-oriented teacher, I have not kept up with the developments of knowledge in this area. However, the explanation worked for us at the time.  A better explanation can be found at:  http://tiny.cc/tlj6nw)

“There was then discussion about how this principle applied to the wings of aircraft and the wings of birds. Aircraft wings and bird wings were found on the internet and projected onto the IWB, and the curve and flat sides of the wings were commented on.

“One of the ruler boomerangs was then hung up by a piece of string from an air-conditioner duct, and remains as a reminder of the lessons learned from the question.

“Then I posed the question, “Where do boomerangs come from?” Two visiting students from the continent of India were sitting in the back of the classroom. I proposed to them that boomerangs came from India. Both of the students protested strongly that this was not the case. Both denied this as a possibility.

“The rest of the class was asked, “Who thinks that boomerangs may have come from India?” Half the class put up their hands for yes, and half of the class put up their hands for no. I then googled the question, “Where do boomerangs come from?” An article was found which identified boomerangs as having been discovered in the Ancient Cultures of America, the Middle East, Australia and Southern India (Wikipedia, 2012b). The Indian students became very interested in this novel discovery – they in fact had some cultural connection to what many have identified as an Australian Aboriginal technology. The students in the classroom then engaged in some discussion with the Indian students, and there was a deeper connection that had not been in the classroom before.

“I then drafted a report, with input from the students, and projected it onto the IWB, and the students copied the report, with diagrams. They wrote far more than they normally write, and were fully engaged in copying down all the notes and filing them in their writing folders. This was about 1½ pages of notes, with half a page of diagrams. This was far more than most of the students had ever written in a single sitting.

“The students then went out for morning Recess. The time flew for the morning session, and I have never seen Indigenous students as fully engaged in school-based learning, as they were engaged throughout the morning, without any need to consciously bring the students back on task.

“After Recess, the blue-tongue lizard dance was rehearsed, and the top-most dot was pointed out on the icon. I explained to the students that this represents the first feed of knowledge. The second dot was then pointed out, and it was explained that we were moving on to the next feed of knowledge. As we take knowledge in, like a blue-tongue eats insects, the knowledge is absorbed by us and makes us strong.

“I then remembered that the classroom teacher had previously planned to run a soup stall during Recess of the approaching Friday.

“A spreadsheet was projected onto the IWB, and categories of: Price, Number of Customers, Income, Costs, and Profit were put into strategic cells.

“Formulae were placed next to these headings, and variables were placed in each of the cells that contained a formula. As the variables were changed, it was projected that the class could make a range of between $0.00 and $198.00 profit, depending upon how the variables were decided upon. The students became more and more interested as they learned that their decision-making processes could determine the size of the profit that their stall could make. It provoked a lot of discussion.

“After an optimum array of variables was decided upon, I proposed a chant that the students could memorise: “If you got no profit, then you got no business; and if you got no business, then you got no business to be in business.” This was chanted several times, until all the students had it down perfectly.

 “We then talked about the importance of marketing, and its capacity to increase the number of customers; the importance of selling the value of the product, so that customers want to buy at the optimum price for the optimum profit.

“Using the internet, and projecting the results onto the IWB, I googled pictures of differe nt kinds of soups, to include on two large advertising posters that the class eventually made. However, before we moved to making the posters, we conducted a spelling activity, using dictionaries. I wrote the names of the soups that appeared in the pictures on the IWB onto a blackboard. Many of the names were written with incorrect spelling (deliberately). Students had to find the words in dictionaries, and indicate as to whether I had written the words correctly or incorrectly. Previously students were very reluctant to use dictionaries, but this time the activity was made a competition between the boys and the girls, with points allotted to each side, and most of the students entered into the activity very enthusiastically.

“The soup words, after their spelling was corrected, were then collated to make a class rap: “At Friday’s stall we’ve got onion soup, We’ve got potato soup, we’ve got, pea and ham soup, We’ve got … “  This became a reading activity, as the students had to read the soup names in the rap to be able to chant the rap with the rest of the class. Once again, most of the students participated in this activity.

“The remainder of the time, leading up to Lunch, was taken up with making the two large advertising posters. Interesting invitations to customers were written, various pictures of different kinds of soups were drawn, and an optimum price was committed to.

“Students then went to Lunch having been fully engaged for the one and a half hour block.

“After Lunch, once again I performed the blue-tongue lizard dance, and the third eating spot was introduced. Yunkaporta’s story of the integrative nature of the returning boomerang was discussed with the students (Yunkaporta, 2009, p. 25). At the lower level, the details seem to be very far apart, and perhaps unrelated. But, as you follow the arms of the boomerang to the apex, you find that the parts are integrated at a higher/lower level. I threw out the challenge of finding a way of integrating the various feeds of knowledge that we had dipped into during the day.

“A spreadsheet was projected onto the IWB, and this time we looked at how to create formulae. As a group we took the raw commands: = , A1(etc.) , + , – , / , sum , ( : )  and combined them in various ways and observed the different results that happened when the same data was associated with a different formula. Students wrote these formulae by hand into their work books.

“Because the students had worked so hard for most of the day, we finished off the day with a game of basketball in the school hall.  At the end of the basketball game, just before being dismissed to go home, I once again did the blue – tongue lizard dance for a final time. At each of the stops where the lizard eats food in the dance, students were challenged to recite the things that they learned at that part of their learning journey through the day. The students were able to recall, in some detail, all the pertinent pieces of knowledge that they had been exposed to (Box, 2012b, pp. 143-146).

“Without any preparations, with only the resources that were at hand, and with the availability of an IWB connected to the internet, the class had a continuous stream of higher level learning, which was accessed by applying two of Yunkaporta’s Indigenous pedagogical concepts and processes. Nurtured by my input, the Indigenous students explored this learning with some support from technology and simple resources which just happened to be on hand at the time (rulers, string, paint, and so on). Points of frustration and resistance (which had been my every day experience when I previously applied Western-inspired pedagogies to the same class level in the same school, 2½ years earlier) – points at which, in the past, the lesson would collapse and melt down – simply did not arise.

“Everyone enjoyed the day. Everyone learned something (even the Indian students visiting the classroom learned something). From my perspective, it was the best day of teaching and learning that I have ever experienced in my whole teaching career – best day ever.

“This kind of teaching requires that teachers have a broad range of life experiences to draw upon. A resource-rich classroom would be an asset. A detailed study of Tyson Yunkaporta’s 8 ways Indigenous pedagogies needs to be internalised and automated, so that his icons evoke layers upon layers of application, and the most appropriate icon being available for recall for the specific context being explored. A personal experience of participating in Indigenous dance would also be helpful.

“From this recount it can be seen that employing Indigenous pedagogies can elicit responses that often do not follow the application of Western pedagogies in classrooms with tradition-oriented Indigenous students”   Box, L. A. (2013) Warlpiri Business as Pedagogy: A Learning Journey. Sydney: National Institute for Christian Education. Dissertation submitted for partial fulfilment of a Master of Education (Leadership) degree.

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Home Schools, Home-Based Education

Defining the Terms

George Orwell, in his book, 1984, illustrated the power that comes from defining terms.  New Speak had the capacity to make anything to mean whatever the controllers of a society wanted it to mean.  People with a radically different agenda have been redefining terms for political advantage forever.  My wife cannot use her middle name in public places, because what once meant a happy, fun-loving disposition now refers to a life-style choice that my wife has no desire to have anything to do with.

Since the early 1960s, when Rev Dr Rousas J Rushdoony acted as an expert witness in support of parents who were taken to court because they chose to educate their children at home, the terms home school or homeschool have been widely used to describe such education.  I have chosen to use this term in my dissertation, and throughout this blog site, in a more precise way.  When I use the term home school, I am meaning the setting up of a school-like environment and conducting schooling in the home.

I am now proposing a different term to be used as the coordinating term that describes the education of children out of a home as the base for such an education.  The term I propose to be used is: ‘home-based education’.  Home-based education includes home schooling (as I have defined it) as one of the modes of home-based educational delivery, but home-based education also includes unschooling and radical unschooling as alternative modes of home-based education.

Home-based education is conducted in the context of living life in the company of others; particularly in the company of other family members.  Every part of life is an opportunity to learn something.  This could include learning from formal academic studies, household chores, engaging in communication events with other members of the family, and having foundation skills and ideas developed in young impressionable minds.  The Fabian Socialists and Marxists understand the importance of capturing the young mind, before it is shaped by the family, the church, and other local community sources of skills and knowledge.  This is why they are so adamant about having children sent to school to be socialized (i.e. be indoctrinated into the mindset of socialism).

Home-based education is not home-bound.  The home is an important base, from which the members of the family move in and out.  Amongst the Australian Central Desert First Nations People, the Warlpiri, they have a kinship system (‘skin system’ – has nothing to do with skin colour, it is merely a corruption of the term kinship), and the Jangala/Jampijinpa Nangala/Nampijinpa clan have a concept of complementary states of water.  One state is static water, and the other state is moving water.  Both are critically important.  Static water, such as a billabong, provides a sanctuary for fish and birds to feed and breed in and around.  However, if the water remains static for too long, then the billabong either dries up, or goes stagnant.  In the cycles of the seasons, moving water must flow in and out of the billabong to provide fresh water, to aerate and oxygenate, to flush out accumulated rubbish, and to enable fish and birds from other areas to mix with the fish and birds of the billabong, to strengthen the gene pool.

Home-based education needs to have a safe sanctuary to withdraw to, but it must not become a stagnant pool, so insular and protective, that it becomes stale and stagnant.  This highlights the difference between home-based education and home schooling.  Home schooling is so home focused, that there is no (or very little) interaction with the broader community, and there is no trust that other members of the community can have a positive input into the lives of the young family members.

God has ordained that the home, the church and the market place have a role to play in the development of an educational environment for the younger members of the family.  Certainly, the parents have the primary role of being the gate-keepers of the family, and they need to be discerning as to who they expose their children to.  The church has a very important role in helping parents to develop a godly sense of discernment, and should work with the family to set up safety barriers and limits as to who, in the market place, has educational access to the children.  However, no sets of parents are able to supply everything that each member of the family needs to have a rich and meaningful education.

 

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Schooling

What are the characteristics of schooling that make schools schools?

In my research, one of my respondents made the comment:

“On the other hand [in contrast to good education], schooling means: classrooms, no learning and knowledge; when things are learned it has nothing to do with information, it is not interesting and not cool.”

From her perspective there were certain characteristics of schooling that make schools schools.  She held those characteristics up as being anti-educational.

The first of the characteristics is that schooling is done in a classroom.  The great Athenian educator, Socrates, avoided classrooms.  He chose to conduct his lessons in the midst of life being lived.  Cole, in her book, A History of Education: Socrates to Montessori, wrote that:

“… Socrates taught, but not in a school. It was in the marketplace, in the gymnasiums, and in the streets that Socrates carried on his life work of teaching young and old Athenians to know themselves, to know what was good, and to know what conditions influenced the development of virtue. He did not withdraw from life in order to study it under carefully controlled laboratory conditions but rather went joyfully out to meet it where it was whirling along at its busiest” (Cole, 1966, p. 10).

This is of course where Jesus did most of his teaching as well.

When my respondent said that in schools there was no knowledge and that when things were learned they had nothing to do with information, I interpreted that to mean that there was a disconnect between the information being communicated through the classroom lessons, and her everyday experience of life.  How much of school work is relevant to how many of the students?  Sure, a very small minority of the students will go on to higher education, and will spend the rest of their lives contemplating the esoteric and the ethereal, disconnected from the challenges and frustrations of living in a fallen world that requires practical wisdom to survive.  And much of school and schooling prepares those few for such a life.  But what about the rest?  Are they being equipped with entrepreneurial skills so that they are not dependent upon finding a job? Don’t have to depend upon government support?  Can they be productive and get paid for their initiative and industry?  Are they being taught how to be useful through mastery of practical, hands-on skills?  Are they interacting with a range of people, outside their peer group, and being challenged to develop communication skills in a range of circumstances, through a range of registers?

During the beginnings of the Global Financial Crisis nearly 53% of new university graduates in the United States of America were either unemployed or underemployed, and they had upayable study debts of between US$30,000 and US$300,000 at the end of their schooling experience; no employable skills, and no entrepreneurial skills (Weissmann, 2012).  At the very same time, young unschooled teenagers were earning between US$200,00 and US$1.5M annually from internet-based businesses [completely without schooling, but because of relevent unschooling, very entrepreneurial and productive – during a world-wide depression] (Investopedia, 2012).

I would suggest that in the majority of schools, the answer to all the questions above is, “No!”  Children are corralled into age-segregated classrooms, they are given mountains of busy work, required to memorize information for tests, but not shown how the information applies to developing healthy relationships, how to solve complex ethical challenges, or how to be productive and useful in life.

When my respondent said that school and school work was “not interesting and not cool”, she was indicating that the information being communicated is standardized.  Each of the attendees in a school classroom is uniquely created by God.  Their learning styles, passions, interests, and call of God upon their lives are unique.  But how can one teacher cater to the uniqueness of all the students in the classroom.  It is not possible.  I tried for 26 years, and was a complete and utter failure.  And it was not because I am a poor teacher.  I am a good teacher, and I have many one-on-one successes to demonstrate that I am a good teacher.  However, the classroom with one teacher taking care of nearly 30 children (and many more in non-western classrooms) is not an environment that can facilitate individuality.  Montesorri classrooms come close, but not as close as the unschooling environment.

Of course, there are many more characteristics of schooling that can be discussed.  However, these were the characteristics that came to mind from the response of one of my respondents.

Cole, L. (1966). A History of Education: Socrates to Montessori. New York, NY: Holt, Rinehart and Winston.

Investopedia. (2012). 10 Successful Young Entrepreneurs.   Retrieved 31/05/2014 12:30 AM, 2014, from http://www.investopedia.com/slide-show/young-entrepreneurs/?article=1

Weissmann, J. (2012). 53% of Recent College Grads are Jobless or Underemployed — How?   , from http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2012/04/53-of-recent-college-grads-are-jobless-or-underemployed-how/256237/

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Funding

Government involvement in education in Australia

In my dissertation I argue strongly that education is part of the God-defined jurisdiction of the family, the church and the marketplace, but the state has no God-given or God-defined mandate to be involved in education (except maybe military academies, because defense is part of the state’s jurisdiction).

In Australia, because the early colonists were mostly state-dependent prisoners, there were insufficient tithe-paying members of the church to generate the funds for the church to get on with the business that God had called her to be engaged in (which included the business of training fathers to teach their children).  Public funds were distributed to the church from the beginning (particularly for education), so that there has arisen a mindset of dependence upon the state in the church — Anglicare, Baptistcare, Salvation Army, Frontier Services, etc., all receive government funding to enable their organizations to go about the business that God has called the church to be involved in.  Try preaching the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ as part of these state-funded services, and you will see how little these church organizations really are ministries of the church.  They are state functionaries in practice, church ministries in name only.

When Christians have no concern about government involvement in welfare, infact, when many Christians are on the cutting edge of advocacy for increased government involvement in the church’s affairs, there is no pang of conscience about government involvement in education.  How many Christian schools receive government funding?  It has come to the point that Christians in every state and territory, in Australia, (except for South Australia), are not permitted to set up their own education facilities without them being registered by a government agency.  The costs of setting up static, purpose-built schools is beyond the financial reach of most Christian parents, so state-funding is called upon to subsidize.  He who pays the piper calls the tune.

The Safe Schools* initiative being rolled out in Victoria, and being planned to be rolled out to all schools across Australia that receive government funding, is a demonstration of how much political correctness is attached to accountability for the use of public funds in education.

The Homeschool Regulations in New South Wales are an illustration of how boldly intrusive governments in Australia have become, demanding that home-based education look like schools, in the home**.  This is one reason why we need to help home-based educators make a shift from using the term home school, when they are unschooling.  Home schools can be registered.  An unschooling life style (i.e. living as if schools do not exist) is outside the state definition.

We have a long way to go in helping the church in Australia to take on the mind of Christ in the realm of education.  But we must begin the journey, and we must commence the task of trialling different things until we get something that works.  If we always do what we have always done, we will always get what we have always got.

* https://www.change.org/en-AU/petitions/unease-over-safe-schools-coalition-let-boys-be-boys-and-girls-be-girls

** http://www.boardofstudies.nsw.edu.au/parents/pdf_doc/home-edu-info-pack-13.pdf

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Schools

Schools as Total Institutions

Cohen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K. (2011). Research Methods in Education. London: Routledge, make mention of Goffman’s 1968 work on Total Institutions.  Goffman’s study was centred on a mental institution, but the findings could equally apply to other institutions, such as the military, a prison, and such like.  The following is a list of the qualities that make an institution a total institution, according to Goffman:

  • The institution is convened for a specific purpose
  • All aspects of life take place in the same place and under the same single authority
  • Every part of the member’s normal daily activities takes place in the company of many others
  • All members are treated the same and are required to do the same things together
  • The daily activities are precisely and tightly scheduled by a controlling authority and officials, and through formal rules that are tightly enforced
  • The sever activities are part of a single, overall plan that is intended to fulfil the aims of the organization
  • There is a division between the managers and the managed (e.g. the inmates and the hospital staff; the teachers and the students)
  • The inmates have limited or no contact with the outside world but the officials do have contact with the outside world
  • Access to the outside world for inmates may be physically or institutionally restricted, controlled or forbidden
  • There is some antagonism between the two groups, who hold hostile stereotypes of each other and act on the basis of those stereotypes, often based on inequalities of power
  • Officials tend to feel superior and powerful whilst inmates tend to feel inferior and powerless
  • The cultures and cultural worlds of the officials and inmates are separate
  • The two worlds – of officials and inmates – have limited penetration of each other
  • There is a considerable social distance between the two groups
  • Inmates tend to be excluded from knowledge of decisions made about them
  • Incentives (for work, behaviour) and privileges have greater significance with the institution than they would in the outside world
  • There are limited and formal channels of communication between the members of the two worlds
  • Release from the institutions is often part of the privilege system (Cohen, Manion, Morrison, 2011, p. 581)

Cohen, Manion and Morrison also add, “It can be seen that these features can apply to several different total institutions, of which schools are an example” (2011, p. 581).

No wonder many students rebel against the prison-like feel of schools.  Would they respond differently if education was delivered in a different way?

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Aboriginal Education, Accelerated Christian Education (ACE), Denominational Christian Schools, deschooling, Discipleship, Education, Education and Culture-making, Education and the Church, Education and the Family, Education and the Marketplace, Education and the State, Education Delivery Programs, Funding, Hebrew Pedagogies, Home Schools, Home-Based Education, Indigenous Education, Indigenous Pedagogies, Ivan Illich, Life Learning, Natural Learning, Schooling, Schools, Socialization, State Schools, Teaching, Tertiary Education, Themelic Christian Schools, Unschooling

God doesn’t want you to send your children to school: He wants them to have an education

After climbing to the top of the academic tree of education by earning a Diploma of Teaching (Primary), Bachelor of Education, Master of Education (School Leadership), Doctor of Philosophy (Christian Education) and a Certificate IV in Training and Assessment [mostly self-funded], and working for about 30 years at all levels of school from Preschool to adult education, I have come to realise that the deficiencies in educational outcomes for children in the western world are because of schools and schooling. Schools and schooling have always been the problem.

Book_Cover

My new book is now available from Amazon.

Education and Schooling are not synonymous. A proper education does not require children to be sentenced to twelve years locked away in a total institution as if they were criminals, mentally insane, enlisted in the military or part of a religious cult.

The state has no mandate, at all, to be involved in education. Education is the proper sphere of the family, with support from the church, and assistance from free-market tutors and other community custodians of skills and knowledge.

True education should be delivered through unschooling, with a discipleship emphasis. Ivan Illich explored the idea in the 1970s, and the Triune God of the Bible emphatically agrees.  You can get this book from Amazon.

Some time ago, now, I walked away from working in a school as a school administrator. I am on the road to deschooling, but am conscious that there is much more of the road that needs to be traveled.

The focus of my research is around Biblical Christian deschooling/unschooling.  Over time I will be triangulating the things that I have found in the literature, with interviews conducted with families that are actually unschooling, and comparing the results with the development of my own thoughts over 30 years, as recorded in my personal journals.

I look forward to the day when home-based education is the norm, not just a curious anomaly.  Those who would like to read my book, you can get a copy from Amazon.

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The dissertation for my post-graduate doctoral degree is located here: Dissertation found at this location .

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