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GROWING WITHOUT SCHOOLING 56 Ten years ago John Holt started W ilhout

khmlurg, not knowtng how

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powerful a chord he was to strike in the hearts ofparents; as our prâ‚Źsence shows, lt is a chord that resounds past hts death. It ls true tbat we are stmggling to make ends meet, but they are meeting. Operating our Book and Muslc Store as well as publishingGWS and our otherHolt Associates titles is qulte achallenge nowthat we have more young children among us. Shane (12), Lauren (9 months), and ournew friends, Vincent (5) arrd Celj,a (l5months), take up a lot ofHolfs floor space these days. I wonder if there are any other city offices that have children romping around tJreir parents

and co-workers durtng buskress hours. Our colleagues at work harrc changed several times over the past ten years, but this has never caused GWS to miss an issue. This can be directlv attributed to the efforts of DonnaRichoix, whobegan as associate editor and then took on theJob of edifing GWS, wLrlch she has done

forthe pasteightyears.

What I leamed when I first started vrcrk here is that Donna edited the maJority ofeach issue so thatJohn could spend timeon his lc.cturing, traveling and wridng (she is also the person who tweaked John to get his

ON CHANGE published an exccrpt from John HoIf s essay about AS. Neill, and I want to repeat part ofit here: 'The worst thing that can happen to anygreat pioneerof human thought is forhts ldeas to fall tnto the hands ofdisciples and worshippers, who take the living restless, ever-changing thought of their masterand trv to carve itinto imperishable graniie, so that not aword shall TWo issues ago, we

ever be lost or changed. " At HoltAssoci,ates, we stand inourown pardcularindividual and

collective relation toJohn the pioneer, and howwe interpret that relation elfects howwe

seeourdailywork. Whlle John was publtshtng GWS, clear about style, formatorcontent that he made. ButJohn's legary to us was not only these reasons and policies but trrstin ourown ability to make sense of the homeschoollng movement, the broader issues ofchlldren and society, and how GWS can best present tJeese issues. In condnuing to publish Grourirg Willwrtt Scholing, we are not merely keeping a promise or nphddbg wtatJohn believed; we are taldng those beliefs and runnfngwtth them. GWS ls not merely a monument; lt pulses with living thoughts and concerns. Some months ago, a letter from Nancy Wallace, who ls nowatrporkon a second book, helped focus these thoughts for rne; She said: "I'm ffnding that my book is dweloptqg into a sort of conversadonwith Johnwhere reErsons supported every decision

ardcles ln on time). Donna also organizd open houses, publictty and fundratshg efforts, and manyotherproJects - notto mendon pitchtng h anywhere HoIt Associates needed help when she could take a breatherfrom GWS; she has certainly packed her share ofbook ordersl Donna ls having her firstchild now, and understandabhwants to

WWffi'W.

o

lessen herworkload here. Donna'scomrnitrnent to GWS is such that she can never really leave us, and we are fortunate that she is stayingwith us as Contributing

O F

Editor. yearwe were all so busy wlth our dailywork and addidonal proJects thatwe needed anothercolleague to do some importantwork thatwas betng put on the back burners: editing a book ofJohn Holt's letters and assisting in the production of GWS. My search for the right person wErs a short one. I knew about Susannah Sheffer from her correspondenc'e with John (she first wrote toJohnwhen shewas tn the elghth grade, agreetngwith the ideas in tris books), herworkwith Clonlara's HOME BASED EDUCATION PROGRAM, and herardcles tn and editing of Tle PerrII Sharpner ln Eastem Pennsvlvanla. It ls now almost avear since she mov& to Boston to be wtth us. ihis

(

I-a.st

I'm actuallybuilding on his tdeas oron

discussions thatwe once had, so that I'm almost assuming that if hewas still around he might have said this or might have said that. In otherwords, I'm not letdng him die. I'm notletting himJust stop wtth the things he sarrl but rather tmagtning what he might now. I'm keeplng our conrrcrsadon going." Thts is what GWS has to do. We have to *dnk - for e:<ample - not only about what homeschooling has been but about what lt is becoming. If the movement and its systems of local support are growlng so strong that rnany state newsletters provide the immedi,ate news and encouragement thatwas once available onlyinGWS, we have to thtnkabout howto be somethlng that the local newsletters cannot be, so that readers will flnd both publicatlons valuable . If the rrpvement is "growlng up," so thatweare nowaddresslng the concerns of teenagers as often as those ofyoung children, sâ&#x201A;Źry

we have to think about howto malntain thls balance. These and other guesflons continue to invite and challenge us. In thls issue, several wrlters whomwe have admired but whose work does not deal dlrect$ with homeschoollng have responded to our invitaflon to address GWS's sympathedc audlenc.e. Gareth Matthews,

ttrinldng aboutchlldren's art, and Alffe Kohn, looldng at the harm.firl eflects ofexternal reurards, will (I suspect) fi nd our readersi eager to hear their somewhat unorthodoxviews. Readers, in turn, will be able to place

! o

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E

Homeschooler Briu Bar*er writes about Frursuing adult work outside of insinrticrs in this issue's focus on the older homeschooler, page 25.

is Susannah's flrstcornplete lssue as editor, and I hope you'll agree that herwork shows a healthy respect for our past and exciting direcilons for our fu ture. --- Patrick Farenga

homeschooltng ln the richer conte><t that thesewriters' thoughts about children and societ5r provide. Also ln this tssue, we have built on the tdea of GWS as a "c,onversadon" by gtving contributors a chance to respond to each other be3brepublicatlon, so that readers are able to witness many views at once. Penny and BrlttBarker. fore:<ample - motherand daughter - each address the issues of growing up and findfng meaningful work from their own perspectives; three children comment on each other's experlenc.es with "after- school" classes; parents discuss the feasibility of having a "conflnuum" atdhrde toward household chores. In these and other instances, the feeling of "conversadon" is especially clear. In her letter, Nancy adds: "Ifwe can honestly Gel tbatJohn's work ls ourwork that we are capable of carrying it forward -

thenwe have to trustourselves to make decislons, to carryon." Ifure do something wldch is consistentwith a policyJohn set years ago, it is not "becauseJohn did it that way," butbecausewe too belierrc it is right. Likewise, as we make changes and venture into uncharted territory, it will not be out of disloyalty but rather trust in ourowrl competence and understanding. As John ahvays did, we will contlnue to quesflon, to experiment, to think about whatweVe done, and as always we will need you wlth us. --- Susannah Sheffer

\trIIAT 'S INSIDE: Discussion: Involving Ktds tn Work p. 9- lO ' Irlla Berg on Children's Questlons: p. I I Alfie Kohn & Others onThe Effect of Rewards: p. 19-20 I Gareth Matthews on Children'sArt: p. 21 Penny & Brttt Barker & Nanry Wallace on The Older Homeschooler: p. 25-28 2 Reports: 3-6 === Challenges &Concerrrs: 7-8 ===WatchlngChildren Learn fiellingTtme, karningktters, OlliceAnnouncements: -=News& Writing) : I l- 14 === Bcok& Record Reviews: 15- l8 ===JH, Nanry Plent: 22 ===VisionTtaining: 24 === Resources & Recommendaflons: 30


2

OFFICE NEWS & ANNOUNCEMENTS STAFF CHANGES Elsa Haas has left to work at a center for autistic children in England after being inspired by thebookBobbg,wrltten by Rachel Pinney, the center's founder. Elsahas turice demonstrated how easy lt ls to create interesting opportunlties for oneself with a little resourcefulness and a few letters: she came to Holt Associates afterwriting us a letter, and was irMted to work at the center in England after a stmilar lnqui4r. We look forurard to hearing her r,eports. Sue MoJica of Frarnlnglramhas taken on Elsa s duties, brlnglng her two children, Vincent (5) and Cella ( I l,/2), rvith her each

Cellallvenup theoflice so that a wrlter from the Xtvisaon "tidiblv *tencb Monitorwith whom I was speaking on the telephone lntermpted, "Do you have ctil.drentJ:.ere?" When I told herwe did, she said, "I think thaf s greaL" Eleanor Straus, comlng; to us after working at the Boston City Hospital, is learnfng the job ofSubscription and OIfice day. Vincentand

Manager so ihat she can be responsible for that part of our operaflon whlle Wendy Baruch assumes more administrative dufles. -SS

TRAVEL DIRECTORY CHANGES HANDS Afterayearof runntng the GWSTRAVEL DIRECTORY, Dick Gallien ts passing it on to HelenHegener (PO Box 218, TonasketWA 98855; 509-684-8955). Because the Hegeneftl own a printlng press - they publish HOME EDUCATION MAGAZINE ANd HOME SCHOOLER S WEEKLY - they plan to turn tl e Travel Directory lnto a small booklet that can be more eastly distributed . In the mearnvhile, ifyou would like to visit homeschoolers, send $2 to Helen for a copy of the current Tranrel Directory. To ho st visitors, send heryourname, address, phone, abrief

self-description, preferences, etc.

SUBSCRIPTION DRIVE: NEWS In the sixweeks slnce thelast GWSwent

to press, we have lald some of the groundwork and collected ideas forour subscription drive. Aswe sald,weneed to hrrnaroundthe gentle downward drift of GWS subscrlpdons ifwe are

everto beon asecure flnancial footlng. Our immedlate goal ts IOOO extra subscriptions by the end oftheyear. In the Ilrst two months of 1987, we had 181 new subscrlpdons and 195 renewals; durlng the same two months of 1986, rpe recetrrcd 225 new subscriptlons and 29O renewals. So we have to make up adeffcttof 139 subscripflons iust to match our performancc lastyear, ln -addiUon to the IOOO extr:awe hope for tl.is vear. Butratlrerthan let these numbers -di,r.ou-g.

rt",

ure

canlet themchallengeus

and remind us to get towork' Hereare some ofthe stePs we have

alreadvtaken: *fue have updated our subscrlPflon records so thatwe lmow howwell we are doing.

f[er

'We havebegun agatn to lnsert theGWS tn t]re tnfo packets and bookorders t]rat

we send from here. (Please pass the extras on to friends.) r We have revlsed the flyer, using the Laserwrlter, to be more eyecatctring. ' We have deslgyred a card and method to send renewal nodces to readers bJore thelr

subJect, and you're good at explaining yourself so many times. You mlght even make some mon€y atwriung ardcles - thouglr I hasten to polrrt out that not errcryJournal pays for material. I asked reader Dtane Campbell (KY), one

clear\rbecauseyoule done lt

ofthosewho had'volunteered to do ocrcasional llbrar5r research for us, to

pull together

subscriptions e4plre.

ofJournals that miglrt be lnterested irt

drive (primartly prindng, postage). 'We are desigyrir4;an lnexpensive dtsplay sign for people represenflnglus at conferences.

parttcularaudience

t We have raised almost $2OOO frrom a few friends to cover the inltlal costs of thts

a

list

arflcles on homeschooling. Please look it overand give serious conslderation towriting for these magazines. It would be best to tailor a piece for a - to

talkabout

rATexas readerran a free ad aboutus in alocalmagazine. ' Kit Finn (VA) has updated the furformation about us on the Compuserve bulletin board network. 'MarsrMaher sent asampleofGWS to author Hugh Pr:ather, who responded with great interest and says he lntends to subscribe. I A readerwrote a "Letter to the Editor" of her local paper about us and included our address, which was publlshed. t Serreralftends haveollered to take our

reladonshtps beturcen school boards and homeschoolers for the Amerlcan School futd JounaL for orample, or how llbrarlans canworkwtth farnilies for School Ubary JanrnoL Of course, lf yo:u are or hatn bena school board member or librarian, theseJournals would be ldeal foryou. But it would bejust as good to be able to report on the issues froma homeschoole/s point of vlew. Ifyou decide to go aheadwiththis, your next step would be to send a query to the publicadon - a one-page letterdescribing the story youwould like to wrtte, tncludirqg a little aboutyour experienc.e and whyyou thlnk tt would be a good story. Ask about any guidelines orrequirements they have for wrlters. Of course ttrls query should be neatly

Iterature to conferences.

tJaped.

I have also been watchtng for simple wavs ourfriends outside the office and across thd country can help publtcize us. Some we have recently heard of:

We need to muldply these small steps by many times to reach ourgoal. We will continue towork on whatwe can do from ttris olfice, but clearlywe need to contirrue to appeal to you, our frlends, to act on our b?:fialf. Give a gift subscrlpdon. Tell a fidend about GWS. Ask your ltbrary to subscribe. Represent us at fatrs and conferenc.es. Write

an-arflcle about us (see story below). We have severalhundrcd recentback lssues ofGWS that were damaged sltgltly by

water last fall when there was a fire upstalrs.

Thql are readable but notqutte of good enough quality to sell. (Anyuray, we can't sell them now because our lnsuranc€ comPany has alreadypaid for thelrrep}accment.) We would be happy to get them out ofour office and lnto the hands of prospecflve subscribers, exccpt that the cost of matltng out stn$e free samples is prohlbitfue, Howerver, if some of - say, minimum of 20 - arrd used them to generate new subscripdons, we muld alford to send them

youwanted theseklquandty

outthatway. Please conflnue to

tellus aboutyour

ldeas and your eftrts to promote GWS, and watch here for more sueg€fl

:n:

Rbhoux

JOURNALS TO WRITE FOR [DR] Serrcral ldeas about our subscrlpflon drlve (see GWS #55) had to do wlth getdng more llbrarles, school admintstrators, teachers, etc. famlliarwith

Maybe someofyouwill refrain from dotng arrythlng about ttris simply becauseyou assume that a lot ofotherGWS readers will.

Don'tl I laroqr frrom e:rperlenc"e that the number ofyou who wtll achrally have the timeand mmmltnrentto see this throughwill be srnall, and weryelfortcounts. Pleasedrop us anote to tell uswhat acflonyou'vetaken.

When you write the actual ardcle, put our name and address ln somewhere as a sourceof furtherinformaflon. Of ourse, you could list other homeschool organlzatlons as well. Someedltors maycut these references but many are happ5r to lnclude thernHereare Diane's suggesdons and cpmments. All of these are ln the ffeld of education: the same ldea mlgfrt work well for related professlons suchas lawand

psychologr:

Anerican Sbhool Board Journal,

1680 Duke St, Alq<andrtaVA 22314: hrbllshes ardcles on awide varle$r of school lssues and seems morethanwllllngto Print

dtfferent polnts ofvtew. Ifs dlrected at school board members, buthasardcles on student lssues, tapping parental talents, etc., as well.

Ghlldhood Educatlon, Assoclaflon for Chtldhood Educatlon Internadonal, I I l4l GeorgiaAve, St, 2OO, Wheaton MD 2O9O2: Features arflcles on many subJects. hrrpose ts to present lssues concerntng tnfancy throu gfr adolescence. Audience seems

matnly teachers and ctunselors.

Inetnrctor, The Instructor

Publlcadons, 7 Bank St, Dansvllle liIY 14437: Seems targeted at teachers and other school

GWS. One inexpensivewa5r to do thlswould be to Aet arucles about us and homeschooling

personnel, but has many general tnterest ar$cles on awhole array ofsubJects.

folks read.

Alto CA 9430 I : Audlence seems much llke that of Instnrctor. Feople generally interested ln educailon would ffnd a lot here. Contains arHcles cridcal ofusingjarggn, bcing too

tn6 the magazines andJournals that these

Wrttlng ardcles for such publlcaflons is somettring lhat manyofyou are crrtainly

quallfied to do. You have experlenc'e, you linowu*rere to flnd lnformatton on the

f.csrntng,

53O

Unlverslty Ave, Palo

"professlonal." GROWTNG WTI}IOUT SCHOOUNG #56


Lcernlql lbden Ubrary-College .dssoclates, Inc., Box956, Norrnan OK 73O7O: Savs ttls based on thetdeathatnrc areall unique, and harrc a rtglrt to derrclop our own

tnterests and abllltles, ard leamlng should be sef-dtrected. Ftrsttssuel plclred up had an

lntervlewwlth John Holtl

f,appn, 8th St ard Unton Bloomtngton IN 47 4O2:, Publlshed by professtonal educaflon fiaterntty. Says tt publlshes "arilcles cpncerned wlth educaflonal research, servlce Phl Dclta

Arrc, Box 789,

and leadershtp; lssues, tnends and pollcles are emphaslzed." Hnclpl' NAESP, l92O r{.seocliaflon Dr, RestonVA2209I: Says ltls "amagazlne, not a scholarlyJourmal. Use plaln Engltsh. .. avotd techntcal terms. Provtde... oramples and anecdotes wtrererrcr posslble. " Also caudons a4lalnst "e<cessftr€" documentatlon.

Schooll,lbnr1rJourad, 2O5 E. 42nd SL IIYNY lOOlT: Seems dlrected rnostly at Itbrarlans, but tsn't exba scholarly or

technlcal Today'r Educetlon' Natlonal &lucaflonr{.ssodaflon, I 2Ol l6th St l{W,

Washtngton DC 2O036: Scems general enouglr, and covers marry subJects. USA Today' Socbty for the Advancement of Educadon, 1860 Broa&ray, NY NY I OO23: Publtshes arttcles under 2O dtlferent categorles each month, and educatlonls one ofthes. ArHcles a.re serlous,

butnot scholar$. Also publlshes ashod 'Newsvled' onc.e a rnonth, whldr contalrs very short pleccs under mar5l categorles, ahrays lncludtng educadon (mlght be about college costs or ldndergarten readiness).

Otlrers whlch sound ltke they mfght be possibtlldes: Indcpcndcnt School, Naf I Assoc. of Independent Schools, lSThemont St, Boston

MA02lO8. Journal ofChlldrco ln Contenporaq/ Soclct5r, The Hatporth Press, Inc, 75 Griswold St, Blnghamton NY

13904. for

Llfclong Lcarnlng, Amerlcan,{,ssoc. and Contlrruln! &lucadon l2O I

Mult

l6thStNW Sutte

23O,

WashingtonDC 2OO36.

Rural Educator, DepL of &lucafl on, Colorado State Universlty, Fort Colllns OH 80523.

CALENDAR Thurs. Mav 14. 1987: Holtr{.ssociates Open House: 'Macturtosh Ntght " wtth gutdes Shane Baruchand GlngerFltzslmmons and farrdly. 6-8 pr+ at ouroltce. Pbone 437- 155O. Sat. rlune 13: Holtrdssoclates annual

plcnlc lnProspectHlll Park, Waltharq MA. Hildng tralls, anlrnal parh treasure hunt, panel dlscussions; beg;tnnlng atnoon. I.et us knowtfyou tlrinkyouwlllattend, and help us pay thecostofrentlngthe sttelfyou are able to {suggested donadon: $ lO per family, $5 per lrdivfdual), For more lnformadon, or lfyou would like to help organjze thls 6/ent, call Wendy Baruch at 6 I 7-,tI17- I 55O. Sat June 2O: Reglonal Homeschooltng Conferenc.e organlzed by Manfred Smnh of the Maryland Home Educadon dssociaflon (3Ol -73O-OO73) tn Columbta" MD. Workshops and display tables all day. Susannah SheIIer wtll lead aworkshop on "ContlnutngJohn

HolfsWork" We are bappy to

run noUces of maJor

homesctrooltng events, but we need plenty of noflce. Deadllne for GWS #57 (ercnts tn July or later) ls May I 5. Deadlfne for GWS #58 (orents ln September or later) ls July 15. GROWING WTIIIOUT SCHOOLING #56

NEWS & REPORTS VISITING HOMESCHOOLERS Jo*phCtoto(MQwltes: IJust ffnfshed bavellngabout TOOO mtles and encpuntered home educators almost e'rrcr5nrhere I went. I tookerery opportunity to lntroduce and rnake lorown to the general publtc thatmy sonswere homeeducated. As has been potnted out by some others, the vast maJorlty of the ctrlldren betng home educated

wererot ofschoolage. I alsomet nranyparentswbo had betn home educadng, and when thelr chlldren

reached l2+, tIe chldten u:orrtd

to

go

b

school l\{y observatlons tn these clrcumstances are that these farnlltes gener:allyfollonred a currlculum, requlred producdon flom thelrchlldren and ln many urays slmpl5r r,epltcated the publtc school system. Well, |f I wele a student at home under these condiflons, I mtght also opt for publtc school. Ifone ls golng to be lnsdtuttonallzed, whynotgowhere the gohgts easler? What I harrc observed ts that the an:dety lorcl ofthe parent(s) largsly determlnes the degree towhichafcrmal strrcture ls used. The more an:det5r, the more stmchrre; ttre more stmcture, the more ltkely the chlldren will be to go to publlc schools. I do hope that others will heed Dtck Gallfen (MN) and others who are larrrnflng the "shortage" ofteenagers amongst home educators and work at provtdlr4lmore contact between and wlth tlrern- Our home ls always open to vlsttors.

Brcrywherelwentand spoke to home educaflng farntlies, I asked the followlng quesUons: How many home educators are onyour SchoolBoard? How many home educators are on the Recreadon Commlttee? How many home educators are on the

LlbraryCommtsston? How many home educators haJe run for or applled for these posldons?

ltreansnrcrwas abtg fatzerotWe tend to forget tlrat we sflll pay taxes to support these facllities, but we do not}tlng to affect them through direct lrrvohremenl Come on, home educatorst Eltherwe act forourown berrefft, or the state wlll act for us. ISS;/Aborrt"Ios

qH s jrs t fint - Jdvt

Hdt wrcte a&out the chM wlo sald, " I$ m gdttg to lrru..z to do all tlr.ds schd. shaff, f d ratlw do X bt scrcrr-" IJ chMtenW us loroto that u:rltklrcdcs, e:datnl dbalficyl" etc. don

t

worh rre shoukl rrrt anstder X an lndirgjion tlvt thetr lwrc schal hasJailed them, b.tt ratter prwJ tlvt chlldren lotrln wFnt ttq

ned ard canteachus pag attentlon

Frcl.u

b

teach

tlea { u:e

RESEARCHER GROWING Morr RoU, uta stafid tlle Home School Researcher {n 7984, wflles wlthrews oJt}e

neatnk s gtutth sbe tlvtt:

The response to HSRwas enthusiasflc and tnterest has been groudngever slnc€. Seneral homeschool hmtlles, home educafl on organlzadons, maste/s students,

doctoral students, and proGssors subscribe and pardctpate. Itls a forum forup-to-date

analysls and revterv ofperdnent research. It also

tsaphce forpeople to publtshwell-

reasoned ardcles on toplcs closely related to home-csrtered learntng. Thtrd, it is an opportuntty for home school researchers to lrrtroduc.e themselrrcs to thereaders inbrief "autobtognaphlcal" or'btographtcal" sketches. These allorvothers to become aware ofwho theyareand to contactthemtf they so deslr,e. As a result of the acflvldes of HSR a numberof things have transplred. F'trst,

numerous home education researchers have become tnformed ofthe many others who

share thelr lrrterests and concerns. This is urcnderfirl because researchers need the most contemporar5l lnformadon arrailable, espectally tn fastgrowtngffelds such as home educatton. Second, the research inforrnation ts readtly arrallable tn a format that is approprtate to researchers (e.g. research methodologfes, statlsflcs, sampling technlques, results). In addtflon, this

lnformadon ls much moredetalled thanwhat ts typtcally found tn brlefneunletter reports or "abstract" forms. Thlrd, an lncrease fur the number of lnteracttng researchers has helped to diawmore researchers tnto the "lnteracdon clrcle."ThIs ls baslcally aresult ofthe "Dtdyou knowaboutBlrdmanwho is at Woodpecker Untver:stgr dotreg a study of XIZABC" phenomenon. Fourth, some informaflon "products" are available through HSR. such as an annotated btbltography, a 57page paper summarlzlng home education researchon home school char.'acteristlcs and learner outcomes, Flfth, and perhaps the mostexciting recent developrrrnt for me, ls that I am now aware that there ls a growtng number of otherthan-educators becomlng irrvolved in home educatlon research. For example, I'm now awar,e ofone soclologfst at each ofthree untrrersldes ln the states ofOhto, Oregonand Toras. (Are tlrere more ofyou? Wrtte soonl) It ls so much

funto sudden!meetsomeoneof

whomlouhad

no prevlous knowledge. So far, I've seen a great deal ofdescrtpdve

data comtng from "sunrey" or "quesflonnaire" type research. Those studles thataddress themselves to a speclllc aspect (e.g. standardlzed achlenement, self-concept) of home educatlon ar€ no\v gro$tlng ln number, and tt ts encouragtng to see these, especially when they harr gpown out of a careful c.onslderadon of prevlous research and a loglcal theoredcal radonale. I would llke to hale more peoplewrtte fcr HSR so that tt represents a wlder spectn-rm of e4perttse and vteupotnt thanitdoes at present. Iwould also like HSRto maintalnits placc as an tndependent source of lnformaHon that can add validity and relabtlity to the overall rcposttory of knowledge relerrant to learnlng tn general, and to homeeducadonln pardcular. Bdad s od,dtess Is HOME *HaOL RESEIIRCHER *lene, Mat]r and. hnputer GROWING WTIIIOI.rI SCHOOUNG #56, Vol. lO No. 2. ISSN #0745-4305. Rrbllshcd tt-monthlyby Holt Assoclatcs, 729 Boylston St, Boston MA 02 l 16.

$2olyr. Datc oflssuc, Aprtl l, 1987. Sccond-class postagepald at BostonMA" POSTMASTER: S€nd

addrcss charqgcs to GWS, 729 Boylston St, Boston

MAOilll6. {)VERTISEF*S: Dcadltnes arc the lSth ofoddnumbcrsd months. Contact Patrick Farengg for newly-rerri*d ratcs.


4 Mucalton Dq aturcnt, @ot State Urfixrsily, eruaIIIs AR 97 33 I : 5O3-754-4

1

5

I

or754-2511.

RESEARCH IN WA. Ftom the Washlngtnt Home xM ResearchR4tort s 7986 aatng, @dttctd W

JonWafte s ulth fuhad, Wheler ard. Henry -Reed as

onsnltants , orld.brbtd@ the

resporrses oj5 3 5 Waslfi1glbn state

lrprntr,schollets:

Summar5rofRcoultr:

Tcat Scorcc: As a group, these 426 homeschoolers lwhose test scories were avallable] scor€d aswel orbetter than thetr peers across the naflon onvlrhrall5l all of the 6 test scales measured by the Stanford ActdevementTest serles thatwere uttlized tn thts research.

Rcaronr for ltroncec,hoollng: The maJor reasons relate to rellglon or phtlosophy, a deslre to avold peer pressure,

a

preference for greater parent/child relaflonshtp, and the facilttadon ofstudent self-conllderrce,

Gencrel Ilcrcrlptlvc Inforurtlon: The typtcal honescnoomg famlty ls a twoparent famJlywhere the parents are somewhat aborrc average tn the lercl of thetr owneducaflon ISS: 1.e,, schooltrgl and make conslderable use of @rnmuntty resoulc€s ln educattng thetr ctrtldren. The typlcal student is age 8- I I , has been homeschooled I -3 years, and spends amedtanof 1 l-lShoursaweek involved ln "formal schooltng. "

Soclalbatlon: This evldenc.e

[pmvtded te the sunrcyl suggests that homeschoolers are not belng soctally tsolated.

Relctlng to Prlvatc Educadon: Homeschooltng ls not a consequence of the tnabtltty to alforrd private schoollng. Among homeschoolers, former prlrrate school students appear to be proporflonally overrepresented compa.red to formerpubllc school

students.

Rclrtlot to Rrbllc Edrrcstlon:

There ls

homechoolerlnterest ln support

publlc school dlstrtcts but lt lnvolves a Hnd irf relaUonstrtp and servlcc whtctr ls difierent from the connenflonal classroom.

appear to be related to flnances.

Some people have malntalned that tlle homeschmling phenomenon ls a reJecdon of

the publlc school system, Tlds datasuggests a wlder range of ttrlnklng. The answer rnay depend, tn part, upon honrthe publlc schools choose to respond. Fl,om the ear[er dlscusslon on reasons for horneschoollng (wherc on$r one of tlre top se1rcn reasons related to religlon or plrtlosophy), tt appears clear that homeschooltng is a reJecflon of the convendonal (publlc orprhrate school) classroomwith tts large numbers of students and 5-6 hourschool day... 14% of the sample lndlcated tnterest ln part-tlme enmllrnent ln a tradtflonal publtc school program and an addtdo r:al 2@h expressed interest ln part-ttme enrcllment ln a publtc school programdestgned for homeschoolers. 59% ofthe respondents gave favorable responses to educatlonal supportservlces on a rrutdnllg agreeaHe basis between homeschool pa.rents and the dtstrtct. An addtdonal 29% were undeclded (thus only I 2% were opposed to worldng wtth the publtc

schoolsystem). Thts data suggests that for sorr€ number, homeschoollng may not be as rrmch an ouMght reJecdonof the publtc schools as ltts an lnterest in a different ldnd of relaflonstrip and dtfierent hnd of seMce. Thls research dtd not ocarnlne further tlre ldnds of services that mlghtbe irrvolved: thts would be a topic for dtnect dtalogue betureen school dlstrlcts and thelr homeschoolers. Itts tnteresdng to note that one aspect of current thlnking on educaflonal reform ls to create more parent tnvolrrcmerrt ln tbe educaflon of their ctrildren. Homescboolers agreet It would appear that homeschml-

publlc schoolcooperaflon ls aferdle areafor creatlve exploration. The

jiltailg

anflet4 82-pqe rqot trrr/irtdes a oJtle 1 12 sutny qtestlons and

costs $ I O. 71e obbefutd rqut Is 26 pages, Is tdenfrc aI to the Jtrll rcpft ercpt that x ofifts tle talg, and osts $5. Mh ote ansallaHeJrom,-bnWaftes, 1 6 1 Og NE 1 69 H"

WdIruilleWA9&72,

fr,om

Otler ercrptsJrom tle rcpatThere tras been speculaflon aboutthe lmpact of homeschooling on tr:adtdonal publlc and prlvate schools. Of those homeschool students ln tlrts samplewhowere prevlously ln a publlc or prlrrate school, 69% had becn tn apubltc school and 3 l% ln a prlvate sdrool. Itunuld appear that publtc schools are bslng sorn€rr*rat o\rcr hvlce as marSr students to homeschooltng compared to the prtnate schools. HoyEvcr, when one constders that on} 8+% ofWashlngton shrdents are enrolled fn prfiate schools (lncludtng an adJustment for unapproved schoolg), the loss to prtvate educatlon ls almost four tlmes whatwould normally be expected, Therewas no dlfferencc between privious publlc school students and prerrtous irtrrate scl\ool shrdents on thequestlon of whetherthe tnabtlt$r to alford aprtvate school was a factor tn choostng to homeschool. Thus, thts data suggests that privaG schools are loslng proporHonally more enrollment to homeschoollng than are the publlc schools and the reason does not

HARVARD DROPS GMAT nns 8/ 12/ 85 WI story hncduP inotr t/s stdlc g .emrryleoJapres@Ia.ts schd daldtng tlnt te sthg doclsn t nwsure

..files;

uluttheyneedtolovw:

The Harrrard Bustness School has become the first maJor buslress school to drop the Graduate l\fanagementAdmisslons TesL 'Therels no relationshlp between someone's abilit5r to perform urcll on a standardtzed cstand to Performasa manager," John H. Lynch, a Harrrard Buslness &hool asststant dean and Dtrector of

admlsslons, told ?18BostonGlobe"'Thetr standardlzed tests' sctores ar€ not helpfirl to us tn selecttng from a pool of hfgfly talented applfcants, those tndMduals wejudge to have the potenflal to become outstandinggeneral mana€prs.i'

...Wthoutthe tests to chooselts MBA classes, Hanrard wlll conttnue to re$ on lts exhaustive appllcaflon, lncludlng some lO essay questions and sald to requlre up to IOO hours to complete.

I\EWS FROM OYERSEAS Anrtrallr The Honeschd Newsletter, published tn Nenr South Wales, reports tlnt the pa.ssage of a new compulsory attendance larv rnakes tt harder forAustralian homeschoolers to galnexemptions, The new law states that the Minlster "may granta

cerdficate exernpdng a child from attendance at a school...if the Mintster is satisfied (a) that the cblld re.cefues approprlate regular and eflctent lnstnrcflon at home; or (b) that condldorrs qdstwhtch make lt necessary or deslrable that such a certiffcate should be granted."The old Lawdid notsay thatthe Mnister "mag granf' an exempflon, but

rather that a "good deGnse against prosecuflon" ofa familywould be the fact that he had granted them one already. Familleswho are refused an exemption, under the new law, must put thelr clrildren in school or pay a flne of$SOO; those wlshing to appeal may do so only through aboard with three members, all appointed by the Minister. In the old law, as quoted above, simply having been granted an exempflon was "good defense": lturas not necessary to go before an Appeals Boarrd. ' In tlre Horne sclwlNewsletter, Jo-Anne Belrnewrltes that homeschoolers went to the Parliament House to Protest" gave radlo lrrtergiews and wrote letters, but were unable to prerrcntthe passage of this law.

'

Gcrmany: This issue of the Honeschd Netosletteralso prlnts a letter from Bernard Bartmann, the German fatherwho had been taken to the Supreme Court and subsequent Jailed for failfng to send h,is son to school, to GWS reader Margr Walter, who had wdtten about the Bartrnann family's case in GWS #53. Bernard urites that he emigrated to Australia ln December of I 986, and ls now working from outslde Germany to start a "people's morrcment" agalnst compulsory schooling.

STATE NEWS Fq addte s * s oJ state ard. IrcaI oryad' zafuns, se GWS * 54 q a.r Honesclwltng .tlesonre IJsd amilable Ju $ 1.

Arlanssrl HouseBill lO88 passed in House and Senateand is awaitingthe gorremof s slgnahrre at GWS pr€ss dme, ac.cordtng to Tom Hollman and Richard Zldckof tlre ARKANSAS CHRISTIAN HOME EDUCATION ASSOCIATION. The bill allows homeschoolers to submit a "rnld-year letter of tntenf in December, prcviding another Ore

option to the August I 5th notification deadlfure requtled under the current Law. Lobbying elforts of homeschoolers helped delbat Senate Bill 4O6, wtrichurculd have required homeschool parents to have a htgh school diploma and take an academic slrdlls test, lowered the compulsory school age to 6, and mandated that testtag of homeschool shrdents be conducted at the public school which thry would be attending.

Cdifornb: In GWS #55, we reported that tlre Alarrreda Count5r Counsel had proposed a revtslon ofthe state Educadon Codewhich would have eliminated "home lnstruction of a mlnor pupil' entirely. The January/Februar5l lssue of the Northem

C alifqnia Home sclwl As sriation Neurs noli reports that homeschoolers lobbied the

assemblymanwho had beenasked to sponsor this bill and succeeded in persuading hlm not GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #56


5 to sponsor it. Northern Caltfornla homeschoolers have appointed an

"lnterim

board" toworkwith the statewldecoalldon so thattheywill be readyto oppose this bill ifit ever i:sintroduced.

Iowa:TheIOWAIOBBYFt)R

CONSTITUfl ONAL LIBERfiY reports that homeschoolers drafted abtllwhtchwas

introduced in the1987legtslattue sesslon. The bill would make "private lnstruction" explicitly legal, with requlrements for parents to submitevldence of lnstrucflon ln various subjects and agree to standardtzed testing under condldons acceptable to both the family and the school. One section of the bill allows a chtld rec'eMng prirrate instrucdon "dual enrollmenf' ln a publlc or approved nonpubltc school. Magsachuaetts: An arttcle tn the Boston Heral4 3 / 6 / ST,said, "Superintendent l-avalWilsonyesterday proposed a plan that would force Boston parents to send 4- and 5year-olds to mandatoryldndergarten - or have them barred from elementar5r school. The proposal drewtmmediate applause from the Citvwide Parents Council, but brickbats from the teachers' union head.. . Under the

proposal... all students threeyears and nine months old and oldervould be requtred to attend special'early learnlng centers' separate from regular elementar5r schools... Students would not be permitted to move on to

unfllthey passed a reading test."This proposal directly contradicts the recent findings ofthe clty's EarlyChrldhood Task Force, which recommended that the compulsory school age be radse4 not lourcred. Rep. william Flynn of Hanover has introduced House Btll9OT which proposes that no school employee shall be liable for damages in any lawsuitregardinga decision authorizinga home educaflon program. There was no testimony, pro or con, at a hearing 3/ L2, andalegislativeaide says thatasimilar bill received an unfavorable report from the Education Committee lastyear. She pointed out that the law alreadyprotercts public the second grade

employees from liability regarding dectsions made ln good faith in the course of theirJobs. Louise Taylor says that a new group, tle MASS. HOMESCHOOLERS COALITION, is forming a phone tree. To participate, contact

David Marquis at529-6977 Minncrota: House Bill 432 was voted out of the House klucaflonCommittee on March I I th and will now be debated on the House floor, accorrding to the &lucational Freedom Fund's telephone hotllne. Marry homeschoolers testtfled at the hearingon behalf of the bill, whichwould require homeschoolers to subrnit quarterly reports to their superintendents and choose between providing themwith the children's records or agreeing to home visits.

Nebraska: Homeschooler Rose Yonekura tells us that abillwhichwould eliminate the homeschoolingopdon has been introduced this session, butbecause itis not scheduled to come up undl the end of the session, homeschoolers suspect that there will be no time to vote on it. Mearrwhile, at a meeting on March6th the Board ofEducation voted to require theCount5r Superintendents to visit homeschooling families errcry four months and homeschoolingparents to send in monthly "test PaPers" lneach subjectarea. Rose said that the tests are meant to be familydesigned, not standardized, and that horneschoolers are notyet certain about the purpose of the superintendent'svisits, but they plan to lile a class acdon suit against the Board ofEducation. GROWING WTIHOUT SCHOOLING #56

North Dalotr: House Btll 1523 lostby one vote on Februar5r l9th, acconding to the newsletterof the NORIH DAKCYf,A HOMESCHOOLASSOCIATION. The btllwould haveallorred parents to qualifyas homeschoolers through one of three means: ( I) bV becomtng a "qualllled krstructor" (obtaining a teaclrtng oerdflcate, ora bachelot's degpee, orpasslng a teacher prollciency o<am); (2) by demonstratlng the studenf s "performance" uslng a standardized achievement test; or (3) by taldng thetr currlculumto the school dlstrlct, county superlntendent or Departrnent of Publlc Instrucflon for approwal. Senate Btll25z16, tntroduccd thls session but notyetrrcted on, would permlt the local school distrlct to receive ald based on a home school c.ensus. Parents, ln turn, could enrcll theirchild lnarry schml course if 30 days prior notice were $ven.

Rhodc Island: The JanuarSr/February

lssue of ?|reHorne Schod-CourtReprt published by the HOME SCHOOL LEGAL DEFENSE ASSOCLATION, reports that last Auqust the State Commtssloner of Educadon "reversed the declslon of the Klnstedt hmily's Iocal school distrlct, who dlsapproved the family's horrrc schoolbecause they refused to submit to periodic'horrrvisits'by the public school personnel." In tris formalwritten opinion, the Cornmtssloner sald, "lnvierv of legal and consfltudonal consldenatlons, we are unable to percelrrc any raflonale whereby a home vlsltatlon rcquirement upuld be Justiflable under ctrcumstances such as those

which are here prcâ&#x201A;Źnt'" Tennerccc: Suzy Dodd of

HOMESCHOOUNG FAMILIES tells us that next year the State Department of Education plans to allocate funds to local school districts for the administradon of the Basic Sldlls test required of all homeschoolers. In previous years, homeschoolers have taken this test at regional test centerswlth other homeschoolers. Suzy says that homeschoolers plan to oppose thls swltch on the grounds thatchildrenwill Gel less cornfortable taking the test in an unfamilhr classroom. Washln8iton: Homeschooler Peggr Renish has c.ompiled an extenslve "Home Educator's Resource Gulde forWashlngfon State. " The Guide contalns llsdngs for "learning centers, nesource oenters, homeI'currlculums," based extension prograuns,'t "children's magazlnes," "catalogs, games, and educaflonal alds" as well as secflons on "the lad' and "philosophy, rnethodologr and inspiration." Looks quite useful for local residents. Add ress is Rt I Box I 2 I , Elma WA

98541.

Weat Vlrginla: Wally Purdy of ALTERNATIVES IN EDUCATION says that HB 2781 has passed in the House and ts pending before the Senate at GWS's press dme. He says the purpose of the bil is to take authorlty for appioving homeschooling out of the harids of the local superintendents by permitting a

superintendent to deny a family's y nofiffcation of intent tdhome*-fro"t "tty he orshecan present "clearand convinclng evidence of educatlonal ne$ect." The bill also requlres superintendents to provtde families with resources avallable to children ln schools, such as textbooks or permisslon to attend a pardcular class. Wlaconeln: The Home Neft.uork Neurs reports that the WsconsinAssoclation of School Boards passed its resoluilon to seek legisladon requiring the Departrrrnt of Public Instrr.cdon to reviewand aPprove

home-based prlrate educational programs (see CWS #55). Members of theWISCONSIN PARENTS ASSOCIATION had worked hard to prerrent ttrls passage and attrlbute to their elforts the fact that more than a thlrd of the school board members voted agalnst the resoluflon. The DPI does notharrc to heed the WASB resolutlon, so homeschoolers will use the opportunlty to oorMnc'e legtslators of the wlsdom of favorable homeschool legislation.

MASS. COIJRT RIJLING Ong /2 / e7, the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts lssued a22-page rullngtn the case of the Moskos famtly of Canton (see GWS #54), remandtng the matterback to the Dtstrlct Court and gtvlng some guidellnes about how homeschool cases should be handled. We quote frrom the declslon at some length, not only for Massachusetts readers but also for those lre the many other states where homeschool declstons arc madeat the locallevel. For a fr,ee copy of the full declston, c-ontact the Reporter of Declstons, SJC, l4O7 NewCourthouse, Boston MA O2LOa: 6fi -7258O74. Ask for"Careand Protecdon ofCharles & others" - the case used a ffcfltlous name

because lt lrvohrcd J uvenlles.

Fmmtherultng

Consdtuuonallqf. ,..The parents argue that G.L. c.76, S. l, isconsdtudondlydeflclent due tovagueness because ltfalls to provide ar5r standards forthe approwalofa homeschool proposalor to provlde a

procrdure through wtrich this determlnatlon canbernade. ..,1n Wanen v, Hazndous Waste Facility Stte SeQ burrd, we determtned that "[al detalled spectffcatlon of standards ls not requtred" tn orderthat a statutewithstand our scrutlny agalnst such a clalm. Indeed, we concluded that standards not expressly provtded formaybe found tnthe statute's necessar5r tmphcattrons. 'The purpose, to a substandal degree, sets the standards." The purpose ofG.L. c. 76, S. l, ls to ensure that "all the chlldren shall be educated...." In order to ellectuate ttris purpose, the kgislature has provtded a comprehenslve statutory scheme settlnf tlre standards for the education of the State'-youth, Thts statutory scheme lncludes standards... concerntng the subJects that must be taught in public schools and the requlrements for teacher qualiflcafl ons. lFootnote:l 'Such schools shall be taught by teachers ofcompetentabilny and good morals, and shall gpe instructlon and training in orthography, râ&#x201A;Źading wriflng, the English language and grammar, geography, drawtng, muslc, the history and consdtution of the United States, tlre duties ofcittzenship, health educadon, physical education and good behavior." [End footnotel I\rrthermore, G.L. c.76, S. I, specifically provtdes that "For the purposes of thls secuon, school cpmmtttees shall approve a private schoolwhen sadslled that the instrucdon tn all the studles rcqulred by law equals ln thorougtrness and e$ciency, and in tht progress made thereln, that tn the public schools ln the same town; but shall not withhold such approval on acrount of religious teactrlng... " Our readtng of thls statute tndicates that the tegislature intended that theapprowal ofa


6 homeschool program fall wtthin the above enunci,ated standard for the approrral of a private school. Consequently, the body of substantlrre lawrderred to above provldes the superlntendents and school commlttees of the Commonwealth wtth sufrcient standards suchthatG.L c.76, S. l, canwtthstanda challenge ofvag;ueness and unlawful delegaflon of leglslaflve authorl$r. ...Stncc Colonlal tlmes, educaflon ln Massachusetts has been "under the control of the people tn each muntclpality." .. . Although school commlttees do exerclse broad dlscredon ln the performancc ofthetrdudes,

itis notunbridled...

We haveno

doubtthat the

statute is cronstthrflonal. Ifthere were any lingering doubt on thls lssue, iturculd be resolved by recognitlon of the guldeltnes wtrtchwe hane set out tn part 4 oftlrts optnlon for the asslstance ofparents and school authorltles. These gutdeltnes, llke the speclffc provisions ofthe stahrtory scheme, provlde pardculars throu gh which the reasonableness of parents and public

autlrorities may be measured. ...While the parents contend, and we agree, that they possess a basic rtght in dL€ctlng the education of their chlldren, such a rlgfrt ls not absolute but must be reconclled

with the substanttal State txterest in the educationoftts cltlzen4l. The Unlted States Supreme Court has recognJzed the State's "trtglr responslbtltty for educaflon of tts cltizens." ...The pa.rents contend that, lf the State has a substanflal tnterest ln tlrls regard, the lnterest must be carefully deflned as to lts true nature. They argu.e t}at the extent of the State's lnterest ts not in educatint the children but only ln knowlng that the ctrtldren are being educated. In hrnwu:eahltrv. Roberts, we examined the predecessor statute to G. L c. 76, S. I, and stated that "ltlhe great obJect ofthese provislons oftlre statutes has been thatallthe children shall be educated, not that they shall beeducated in arry pardcularway." Consequently, ure agr€ewlth the parents that the State tnterest ln this regard lies ln

ensuring t}at the children restdingwithtn ttrc State recetve an educaflon, not that the educaflon process be dtctated in lts minutest

detail. ...Honrever, ln order to ensure that "all the chlldren shall be educated,"we conclude that the approval process requtred under G.L. c. 76, S. l, ls necressarSl to promote efrecdvel5r the state's substantLal lnter€st" Wttrout such an approval proc=ss, the Statewould be porverless to assert lts interest ln the ca.se of a chlld 'bho ls betng ottrerrvlse tnstmcted " lFmtnote]We recogntze that t]re parents also present arguments based on the First Arrrndmentto the United States Consflhrflon and art. 2 and amended art. l8 of the Declar:adon of Rlghts of the Massachusetts Corrstlhrdon Because we conclude that the parents hane abasic rtght under the l4th Arnendment ln dtrectng the educatlonal upbringlng of the chlldren subJect to reasonable gorrcmment reguladon, we need not address these arguments. We note, however, that under the facts of thls case, the free exerdse of reltgton clatms under neitlrer the U.S. northe Mass. Constttudonwould endtle the pa.rents to ary gr€ater protecdon th,an we grant them in thls opinion. [End of .

fmbrotel Gutdelines forApproval of Home Education Plan. ...We caudon the superlntendent or school commlttee that the

approval ofa homeschool proposal must not be condldoned on r€qulr€rnents

that are not

e*sendal to tlre State lnterest ln ensurtng that "all the clrtldren shallbe educated." ...Pr,ocedurally, the superlntendent or school committee must provtde the parents wtth an opportunity to explaln thetr proposed plan and presentwitrresses on thelr behalf. A hearing during a school commlttee meetlng unuld be sufrcient to meetthts r€qulnernent. In obtalntng the superlntendent's or the school commtttee's approrral, the parents bear the responsiblllty ofdemonstr:attng that the homeschool proposal meets the rcqutrerrrnts

ofG.L. c. 76, S. I, tn tlnt the tnstnrcdonwlll equal "in thorougfiness and efrclency, and in t}re progyess made theretn, that in the publtc sdrools tn the same town...." If the homeschool proposal ts reJected, the superintendent or school commlttee must

detail the reasons for the declslon. The parents must then be gfiren an opportuntty to revtse thetr proposal to remedy lts tnadequacies. However, tf the parents commence the educaflon of tlrelr chlldren at home ln the facc of the school ommittee's refusal to approrrc the parents' homeschool proposal, the burden ofproof shtfts to the school committe to show that the instmctlon outlined fn tbe bomeschool proposal fails to equal "ln thorougfiness and eflctency, and tn the progress rnade ther€ln, that ln thepubllc schoolsln thesame town...." ...We recogntze

thatcertaln liactors may

superintendent or school cpmmlttee in determtnirag ufiether or not to appro\rc a proposed homesctnol proposal. Primaqramong these ts the proposed curriculum and the number of hours on tnstnrction ln each of the proposed subJects.... The superlntendent or school commtttee ma5r also o<arnlne the competencyoftheparents to teachtheclrtldren. GeneralLawsc. 71, S, I, provides that teachers shall be'bf competent abilfty and gmd morals." Whlle we r€clognlze that teachers ln publtc schools must be ccrflfled, certtlhaflon urould not approprtately be requlred for parents under a homeschool proposal... Nor must t}r pa.rents have college or adrrarrced academlc degrees. Howerrer, the superinterrdent or school commlttee mayproperly lrqulre as to tJle academtc credentlals or other quallllcailons of the parent or parents who wlll be trstructhg the cldldren. The superlntendent or school commlttee be consldered by the

mustalso haveac.cess to Ore textbooks, workbooks, and other lnstmcdonal atds to be used by the chlldren and to the lesson plans and teachtng manuals to be used by the parents. Ttris access ls necessaqr only to determlne the type ofsubJects to be taughtand the grade lorel of the tnstmcdon for comparlson purposes wlth the currlculum of publlc schools. The superlntendent or school comrntttee rnay notuse t}llsacc=ss to dlctate the manner tn wtrtch the subJects will bc taught. Ttrts urculd lnvohte the school authorldes in an actMty beyond the legitlmate scope of the State lnter€st

tnvoked.

nnally, the superlntendent or sctpol cummlttee may properly rcqufre standardtzed testtng of the chtldren to ensure educaflonal progress and the attalnment of

mtnimum standards... In consultatlon wlth the pa.rents, the sctnol autbortties may declde

where the tesdng ls to occur and the type of tesflng lnstnrment to be us€d. Wher€ pracflcal, aneutral pa.rtSr should admlnlster ihe test. Other means of oraluattng the progress of the ctrlldren maybe subsdtuted

for the formal testlng proc€ss, such as perlodlc progress reports or dated work samples, subJect to the approwal of the

parents. Wtth approprlate testtng procedures or progtr€ss r€ports, there may be no need for pertodtrc on-stte visits or obsenraflons ofthe learnfng errvfuonment by school authority

personnel . ..We cpnclude that the tnterests of all wlll be best served by the followtng order: the

Judge's order (presently stayed pendt€ appeal) ts rracated; the parties are to proceed expedtflously tn aserlous efiortto resolvethe matter b5r aglreement; the case ls remanded to the lowercourt*there the triaUudgeis to have continutngJurlsdlcdon over the case for such furtherproceedings as he deenxl neoessary. IDR.I Clearly, the Moskos famil5r and otherswtro feelthey should nothaveto seek permlsstron frrom the local scbools will not be happy wtth thfs declston, and tn hct the famtly's larvyer says they are conslderlng taldng the case to the federal courts or even the US Supreme Court. But for the many famtltes who feel they can lhrc wtth the pr€sent state ofttre law, ttris declslon adds some usefirl nodons forworlidng out agreem€nts, such as neutral partles to admlntster tests, or the substltuflon of pro gr€ss r€ports or work samples. Wewere surprlsed by the partaboutthe burden of proof strtfftng to the school crrnmlttee to show that a homeschool proposallfoils to be equlvalent What umuld thts rnean in practia, especfally lfa famtly

refused to provtde the schoolswithanyldnd of data, test scorea, etc? Homeschooltng attornry Susan Ostberg says that her tmpresston ls that thls wordlng came about becaus€ tlre casewas handled under"Care and Prrotecdon," tlre chlld abuse and ne$ect proceedtngs, where the burden does tradtflonally fall on the state to prove lts case. She says that if a familyuras complete\r r€fuslng to coopenate, aJudge could order invesflgaflons by social urorkers, psychologlsts, etc., and the parents could be held ln conternpt ofcourt and even lose custody lfthey sUll refused to allow the state to enaluate thelr ctrtldren ln any uray. So

dthough to someitrnay sourrl

as

ifthts

language ts a loopbole for homeschoolers wlshlng to il/otd approrral, tn r€ahty ft

probablywlll notbe.

OTHER COT]RT NEWS Mlchlgan: OnJanuary 23, Dlstrlct JudgeJohn E. MacDonald ruled agalnst the

Bennett famtly, who had been charged wlth fathrre to send thetr four chlldren to school in the Plyrrputh Canton dlstrtct. In lds dectslon, theJudge satd that "nelttrer of the defendents in tlrls case arc educadonal! qualtfled or ceruffed tnthe stateofMchigan to teach thelr chlldren" and that ttre cerflftcated teacherasstgned to the family by the CI.ONIARA HOME BASED EDUCANON

PROGRAM vras acflr4; as a "supervlsot''

rather

thanateacher. Accordlng to theJudge's sentencc, the

parents ar€ rcqulred to arange tesfing of thelr children to determlne thetr "academic achlerrementand grade placement" and must then arrange for lnstmcdon' done b5r or under the supervlsion ofa teacher certfiIed by the state."Accordtng to Pat Montgomeryof CLON1ARA the Benrretts are appealtng the

declslon. GROWING WII}IOUT SCHOOLING #56


CHALLENGES & CONCERNS down to the lidtcherr at 2:OO a.m. after nursln$

COPING WTTH BUSY LIFE Betsg Fein}lelg urote h tlE 1 / 87 new sle tter o.f the NEIV YORK SThTE

HOME{HOOIIER SASSOCIATIO{\I: Stnce last August my husband, Michael, and I have been lrlrolved ln an extenslve

lnteractlve laservldeo program for the banldng lndustry. We\rc been tntense! interesied tn interactlrrc vldeo foryears and this program represented an opporhrnity w9 couldn't pass up. We had alrearly been us€d to worldng iixteen-hour days and serrcn-day weeks,6utwe had onlyhad to dealwlth two cblldren, one an tnfantwho was qutetly unobtruslve ln a Snug! arr:l the other a

toddlerwho enJoyed belngwfth us ln the

ofilcc.

Enterchlld nurrber three, and we suddenlyhad a newand tremendously challenglnS situaflon. Our new PrgJegt trrvoked rnany buslness trlps inwhtch the olderctrildreri could rrotbeincluded, although weoften had ournurslngclrtld along. The older ctrlldren had to stay belrind wtth my elderly mother-tn-lann or, tn a plnch, our oroducdon mana{er.

'

ScrtptwrtUn[andlocaUonworkkeptme

busy enouglr, but the real problemuras that I never knew rutpn I qmuld be worlidng. Plannlne the olderchlldren's homeschooltng was exGrnely dfficult. We'djust Eiet tnto a prolect and I lrrould harrc to drop errerythnng ind takeaphong call froma long-wlnded cllent. Or I mightarranAe to take the dilldren somewhere oilv to ftnd-that I rvould have to be ln Pbtladelphra that day. Flequently, I'd lust have the baby dodng offtn my arms whenl'd harrc to dash to the phone to by to solve some problemwlth acomputer - all withoutgettng the baby too ex6ited to fal asleep a,€aln.

Aad-to *rat ttre cooldng, shopptng' and care ofa serrenteen-room house, four otlrer butldlngs, and seven acres ofgrounds, no ctrildren to play wtthwtthfn walklng distance, the NEI[/ YORI( SIAf, E

HOMESCHOOLER S ASSOCIATION newsletter to publtsh and matl, and a umrk load on Mtchael ttrat started at fourtn the morntng and often lasted unttl ten at nght, a rpork load that for months otndated hfs betrg able to help wlth chlldren or house at all, and you have the maldngs ofa nervous breakdown for one motherand-three hrstmt€d ldds. Or so I thought. What actually happened was qulte

dtfferent. The outcorre was dlfferent becausewe wrre able to dtscard (not wtthout great difr culty on my part) our preconcelved nodons ofwhat iamlly llfe should be ltke' l.e' orderly, organtzd, qutet, and prlwate. Mtchaeland I suddenly found ourselves wltbln a slzable extended "famtly"' Because ourworkplace ls atourhorne, we had otlrer people here ltterallydayand nighL The guest ioomuras tn constant use, occastonally tn double sbifts. One person would get uP at 6:00 a.m. and Iwould rrsh ln and change the sheets so someone who had been working all nghtcould go to bed. - I feltas iflwererunnlngahotel. I never knew how many people there would be for lunch or dlnner. An announccr mtght arrtve lateat ntght and need a meal, orl mtgltgo GROWING WTTTIOUT SCHOOLING #56

thebabyto flnd someone maldngcolfee. (A friend wtth four teenagers says her house ls like ttrig all the tlme. But teenagers cart presumably dress themselves, cut up thelr 6wn fmd, gb to thebathroomalone, and dress thelr ounr wounds, whereas three small childrencannoL)

any steady reliable household help during thts period, so one of the ffrst thktgs I had to leam w"as to askltor artd w-ept lelp graciously' Stnce I had always mnsldered myselfa pillar of strength onwfuch others could lean' this We were unsuccessfi.il tn ffnding

was lmiensely dtfrcult for me. I rpould find rnvself instsdn{ t}Et I was ffne, that I dtdn't n&d anyhelp:-and then Iupuld suddenly burst lrrto tears or ffnd myself screaming at the dog or ttre children for getdng dlrt on-tfe floor. ffien you're exhausted a speck of dirt can seern as big as a rrpuntain') I learned to ask myself, honestly, "Is

tlvre anyore eL* ula ando thls?"

Cfake

out

the garbage, update the mailing list, change a dlaper.) "Oo thbV reahg lluu.te to cI: Xmg LDdAf Sagng no to thts quesdonwas the most dilhcu-ltofdl. though I rnlght feel compelled to clean up the ldtchen right after a meal' Mtchael mlght preferto do ltat 3:OO a-m. Just because others dld notwant to do sorrrthing exactfu the wav I nmuld or on a schedule I deem6d reasoirable did not mean *rat thelr ofier to help was not slncere. ...The older children Mattheur (Z and Jesstca (5), hare actually derlved considerable beneflts fromwhat I Gared would be avery stressful period ln thetryoung ltues' In the beglrurtng I felt guilty and a little aoprehensive at havlnA Matthew and Jesslca c#e for their l8-montfr-oH brotherwhile I worked. Matthew somehow reallzed that lt would be a good thing lf I could work unintem:pGd. Soon-he not only cared for his Itttle brother all morntng, but learned how to dress him, made sure he had trts morning snach and even garte hlm lunchwhen l had to

work a llttle later than usual. The opportunlty for Matthew and Jesslca to assume *sponslbtltty enhanced thelr selfesteem, helpei them both to feel more selfconfident, and best of all, created closerbonds among the thr€e chtldren. These results were not accldental. Under ordinary circumstanc€s, tf I wereJust lronlng or coolidqg dlnner, I would go see what was the rratter tf I heard the chtldren argulng or the baby fusstng. Now I was often on the phone and tt was fr€quent\r flrrc or ten rnlnutes before I could go "str:afglrten thlngs out." This actually garrc Matthew, Jessica and Bram tJle

opportunlty to "straighten things ouf' themselves, wtrtch thery dtd much better without my interferencc. Bestdes growing closer to one another, they've leamed a lot about coopenafl on and sharing. Because of all the lntermPdons, Mattherrds readtng abilfty has blossomed. I tntentlonally read the children very excidng books durlng thts Perid. I suspected that when I was called auray to the phone they

wouldn'tbe able towaitfor me to ffnd out

what happened. I was righl When I came back Matthew had usually read anotlrcr chapter or two. Because I didn't have as much ttm€ to read aloud, he began reading to Jessica and to babvAbraham. Before I knewit Matthewuras $ued to a book at dinnerdme, bedtime, any time, The bookstore ls just about

his favorlte place to spend his pocket money. Ttre chtldrenhave had more fimeand space ln which to be creativ-e ardtdg4ly.-

J-esstca'sJoyous pictures of people, lovelv colla€es and intrtcate thr€e-

Mattheds

dimdnsionil paper sculph.rreswould not have happened wlth adult supeMsion' Children

rt.ed e.rcrso much moreimaginative childdir€cted time than I had errer dreamed. While Matthew and Jessica have notbeen to museums ordancing classes orthe Halloween party at the fir'ehouse, they have had other opportunities. Thry acted professtonal$ in eight videotaped sequences, each sequen& with dt-fferent costumes and makeup-. They made a spooky Halloween tap-e tn the sound studio under the supervision ol a real composer. Therr did avoiceover for Sesame Street. They got to mess around in the kitchen a lot, and even had a professional chef teach them howto make a pasta salad. They spent a lot of time with bankers,

actors, plumbers, musicians, sinAers, lawvers, office workers, and all the woiderfirl.'irtety of peoplewho have passed through our doors in the past six months. I laugh when I thtnk how many people have aslied me how my children wer€ ever golng to meet dlfferent ktnds of peoPle, the impllcadon being t}at one meets so many more of them ln school. lDuringthis periodl I told myself tlntficr thousands ofyears famllles worked togethen farmers, artlsans, shopkeepers. Only reladvely recently have the maJority of Iiamilles spllt up to go their seParate ways durine the day: father to work, mother to work,ind the chlldren to school. In my family, mostof my grandparents' generaflon were-farmers. They worked incrcdibly hard, the children contrlbuflng at the earliest possible age. Yet the children all tumed out hne...It does help to be old enouglr to remember tltese things.

c..ienbrs,

GETTING DISTRICT APPROVAL Sr.rsarr Stlckrreg oJ Corttectlcut wrlte s:

Before the schoolyearbegan' wewrote a letter tnformlng the school we would be educatlnA our 6hild for the comlngyear. The Dir€ctor;f Instructional S€Mc€s called us and wanted to meetwithus to telluswhatour next step would be. We went to the meeting wtth tnf6rmauon on our legal rtghts to homeschool in Connecticut and anoutlineof the curriculum forour son. Frank Cochran' our lawyer, had satd to us that confidence was

ntaland

\x}llilikphmn i kttcrcn .%. ?rytti4,

,,3^fue

@Xtuduplko(nn";;

&ldbrgs^St

lo,

u*p[a

?ur\lnrwnrc,tvr Cfigpfur ?g tofut$o. Cnrvu,T{as ttus


8 very tmportantwhen rrrcefingwlth school olEcials, and lndeed lt was. The Dlrector immedtatelybegan to potntout to us the seriousness of trytng to undertake the educaton ofour own cblld. He told us people

had attempted thts and ended up sending their childrenbackto school. We did notdeliver any negaflve speeches about publlc school educaflon and lnstead csncentrated on our legal rtghts and our ablllfles to educate our son. Our school system has had experiences with a few famlltes homeschoollr4l; consequentlywe v,,er€ not pavlng a road and I

tlrinkthatdld help. Homeschoolers ln Connecflcut must show that thdr ctdldren are receMng an equivalent educaflon to that glrrcn ln the publlc schools. In gutdelines wrltten to the schools lt has been suggested that equtvalency can be stated by provldlng a porffolto, tesung orhavlng a third party evaluate the chtld. Prevtousl5r, homeschoolers tn our town had proven equlvalency by allowtng thelr clrlldrentobe tested by the school system. We did notwantto do thts. We felt thetesttngwas

arbttrary and would glve aver5r tncomplete picture ofwhat our son had been studylng. We espectally felt ttrts was so in the earher grades when chlldren are at such dfiferent lerrels of understandtng concepts pres€nted to them. The Dlrector was not at all happy wtren wewould notagree to testlngas a modeof erraluaflon He told us the averagpctrildwould pass tbe end-of-the-yeartests easlly and was very puzzled about wtry vrc would not agr€e to tt. We emphastzed thatwe feltwewould be able to show ln much more detall what John was learnlng through a pordollo. The Directorkept comhg back to the school's legal responslbtlides for the educadon of

children ln the town. He told us tlreir conc.ern was that tfwe dld not

schoolourson

sadsfactortly, wecould brlngthe school to

court for noteducatlng our son. We indicated thaturc thought thts was really nonsense. Flnally, wtthourlauye/s help, wewrote a

letter to the school legallyuravlng themof thelr educatlonal responstbtllfles tov/ard John and stadng that wewould pr€sent a

pordollo tudceayear. The sctrcol board noted at thelr next meeflngand approved ourrrrthod of evaluaflon Happy dayl We asked for the

currlculum and books for theyearand were given the standard outllnebook sentto all parents and textbooks and workbooks for math and Englsh. When I questloned the whereabouts of sctrenceand soctal studles books I was told the ffrst grade dtdn't recelve textbooks for sclene ard soctal studlesl The Directoralso told uswewerewelcpme to use the school's llbrary, In c-omparlson to some of the systems we had read aboutrpe dtd notfeel thlswas an extremely frtendly school systemwe wer= negotlatlngwith, rror did we feel ttnras excessfircly unfiiendly. They urcre not throwtng massive road blocks ln ourway, nor were they applaudlng us for a dtllerent approach tn the education ofour child . We were told we should oslc tlre school board for appro\rd, lnstead of nofifrlng them that we would be homeschooling. I thtnk the Dtrector feltbeholden to ltstevery obJec6on he could think of. (Ituras lnteres64l; "learnfng disabft fl es" were rrrndoned more tlran once. How could we as parents recognize and deal with such a difrlcult problem? I was astourrded at the assumptton that errery chlld who was havtng some dtlfrculty wtth a parflcular subJect mtght harrc "learnlng disabllldes." I wondered lf they had ever

tlrought the chtld simply mtght not be able to understand thts concept at thls pa.rttcular tlme?) We answered eachof hls doubtswtttr our own thoughts and reassuranc.es, wlthout

llstlng our opinlons of tlre draurbacks of hJs methods ofeducafion. The prevlous year of homeschoollngJobn, and reading allwe could find, really helped us. The reacdons from people we knew were surprlsing. We had been expecting much dlstress from some very tradltional-rrdnded relatives. Instead they agreed that John needed more than the publlc schools c.ould

an ofilclal-looktng stgn for the front door:

KATRINKA CATBIRD SCHOOL. She has seemed safl sfied about the issue

eversince.

errer

offer, and only voiccd a couple of obJecttrons. Wewere able to reassure them. They have beenvery supportfue and have sent newspaper articles on fun things to do, etc. We vrould nerrer have predicted thls turn of errentsl

Strangers have been a surprlse too, While on err,'ands, we have been asked more than oncre why John lsn't in school. We hane told them about homeschoollng and weryone has been very posldrrc. Many people harrc told me urhat arponderfi.rl idea thry tldnk lt ls, after

they find out thatyou really can legally send your chlld to schooll Susan sent us thls updn:te

rot

hl oto

February: We had prepared an extensive portfolio and summaqr forour meetlngwith the

Dlrector of Instrucfional SeMces. Everythingwas organlzed by subJect, t5pewrttten and dtvtded lnto tndMdual folders. The Dlrectoruras nery pbased wlth our presentaflon and John's progress. After our meeting both my husband and I felt we were well on our way to establishlng a gpod reladonshtpwiththe school. We have shown them thatrrre are\rcry serlous about providirg John wlth an extenslve educaflon and they in tum are not lnslsdng tt can only be done thelrway. A short ttme afterour meedngwlth the Dlrectorwe recclved a letter fr,omhlm saying that our "summarlr reportwas excellent and lndeed much more thanwe expected, " our

"portfolios were excellent and agaln much rrpre thanweexpected," and "examples of your son s work tndicate that he ls progresslng extreme\r well, " We were dellghted wtth the results ofour hours of pr€parauon and also very reltoed to be past the flr:st hurdle. It lsrrcry excldng to us to see the results ofJohn's own lnltlattve and curlosit5r encrompasslng all of hts waklng

hours.

OBSERVE VS. EVALUATE In a 1983 radto lnterview, John Holt said somethlngwhtch I thtnk could be very useful to famllles negoflattngwlth thelr school dlstricts about how much or what kind of "evaluaung" of thelr clrildren theywill do. .John said, "karning can't be quantilied or measured, but it can be observed." Many school olffctals feel - rightly or wron$y - that it is thelrJob to make sure that all children tn their dlstrict are'being educated." Perhapsyou don'tneed to argue wlth them about what that means to work out a mutually sadsfftng arrangement. Ifyou agre< with John's statement, you might be reluctant to testyour children but quite wtlllng to obsenre tlrem arrd record whatyou see. You don'thave to nreasureachild's learning tn order to rnt{ce it (in fact, trying to measure ttwlll often make it tmposslble to nodce lt). JohnHolf s How Childrenlearnls full of thls ldnd of nodclng, and from his erample many people have come to see learningwhere before they might have missed It. Homeschooling parents can watch their children and point out to school olffcials

whattheysee. In otherwords, lrr some cases (others, I real9e, may be mone dt-ftcult) both sldes may be sansfted wtth detalled. wrttten observaflons of the chlldren's learnlng as a wayofdocumendng the factthat they are 'belng educated." Let us hear from any ofyou who have already established such an arrangement. -SS

CLASSES WITH SCHOOL KIDS

[$ I In t]e Jolloutb g wtrld;tablediscnssicn-by -nralL I aslcd hmescloolers ulo halue hd. sitnilar eryerlerces to share tletr tla ughtsard

sr.qggrestrirns.

startanewore.

Anunda kryson-Shilock

WANTS SCHOOL NAME Stqfwne J udA (BC)

w

rlb s :

IVe been working through my 4-year-old daughter's concerns about not gotng'hway to school," as she puts it. She ls already heartng from so many people how excttlng tt wtll be when she ffnally gets to rlde the bigyellow bus

and go to school. She told me manydmes thatourhomeis not a "real" school. I probed gently around thls lssue and sharcd my feellngs about tt. She ftnally expla.tned that her older frtends go to "real" schools like Brent lGnnedy School and L.V. Rogers School. I asked lf she thougfrt our homeschool needed anarrp and she looked at me ln utter s<asperation. 'Well, OF COURSE it needs anamel" she sald. I asked tfshe had any ldeas and she immediately replied wtth the name ofa character from a story we had been reading. Wegot out some large-stze Letraset and made

Tle cltlAren

usere rrot merelg asleed to re sporrd to the s ame questlo\ tIW unrc gitren a chan'ae to read. erch otM s letter s h drqft Jan ard to ansupr tJvm diradg. We innte othss to add to thJs d{scnssiort- oru* asimilorfornntto

ofr

tle

dlsanssbrr-

(PAi

stafted

fo urltirg :

In my grmnasflcs class, I found several different types ofchildren. They lncluded the type that wants to be there, the type that doesn't really care, and the type thatwould much rather be out bicycle ridtng. IVe neverhad arry trouble gettingalong wlthl<tdswho go to school. I don'targuewith them or tell them I'm luclder than them they're the oneswho sayyou're luclry. But someumes we have a dllfererrc.e of opinion about somettringwe're doing. Sometlmes they have been sttflng tn school all day, and when u/e're in grm class they want to stand around and be gooff, and not pay attendon, because they're dred of ltstentng to teachers. That sort of lrks me because I feel ifyou're golng to go to grmnasdcsyou shouldwant to bethere, you shouldn t think "Oh my gosh, I have another hour of grm and I don't want to be here, it's Just that my momwants me to be here." It makes me feel sorneilmes sortofsad, when GROWING WTMOUT SCHOOUNG #56


9 they act like the reason they're there is their parlnts sent them, ifs approdrnately the same to themas taldngdolfn lessons or doing art at school, somethlng thelr parents want them to do that thev don'twant to. I worked out a tectuilque fordealrngwittl this. At grm class, rpe were dolngvaulting, and lf someone asked me a quesdon rigftt before I was going to do my vault I'd say, "I can't talk to you right now, I'm going to do my vault now." That's somethlng IVe learned to do instead of igyrorlng the quesdon. Ifyou ignore it, they keep asldng it, but if I say I can't talk they usuallyJust turn to someone elseand talk. V xa W ollace (NY) rc s pnded": I

knowwtrat you mean about tlre children

in your gymnastics class not reall)r wanttuxg to be there. A Gwyears ago I took ballet, Aymnastics and violin classes and had the Jame problem, though the chtldren nerter want& to talkto meverymuchbecause they lnew each other better. I ended up quitting all

still take violin lessons, I don t Ao to classes) because the kids fooled and t"lked to each other so much, and "rontid did what the teacher told them in such a halfheartedway thatwe didn'tget to learn that I didn't already know. anvthing - I do]however, stillgo to theCtrildren's Choir rehearsals, because I want to sing in it enough thatit's rporth lt, even thouglr the kids are so naughty and sometlmes are really rlde. of them (though I

Lastyear, when the childrenwereunrse than they are thisyear, I used to be ahvays almost sitting down on nothlng before I noflced anythiry; queer. (They had a trickwhich almosteveryone knewbut I didn't, of quietly takingyour chair away while you were starrding up and not putdr4l it back when you

satdown.)

Also, I can't ffgure outwhy Janet, the c.onductor, is so exclted about tlewaywe sing (and behave). I thlnk maybe she thtnks that by being enthusiasdc she wlll encourErge us to

slnEbetter.

Somedmes. too, I thtnk the other l<ids don t ltke theway she obvlously apPreciates the way I pay attendon and do what she says, and don't go raclng alound durAtg'break" trvin{ to throw iuice at the other liilds in a roioniwhere eaung and drlnking aren't allowed.

Christian MtplW PN read brldtcomrnents and,

tlen

re

sprded:

Yes, I have had those experienc.es, but I take an art class and lt ls a small class - only five people. Everybodv is from a dilferent

schiol io thev d6n't tilk about their school experiences ind I don't Gel leftoul I thJnk theydon't fool around because werybody is doiirg something theyare interested inall the tirne. Someflmes thouglrl do have problems. For example, lastyear at a drarna camp I went to. evervbodv wasn't ahvays on stage and people iotb6red and talk6d so it got real loud. ?fnd ruancy, our teacher, got really irritated. That made me upset elen though I knew she wasn t upset at me because I hadn't made friends yet but I would have pald attenflon anyway. - one tirne I did make out from other Ldds not paying attendon. On one of my soccrr tea;E-the-ldds all played around but I didn t so I

Aotmyown drnewiththecoach showlng with the ball.

me frow to do sorrrc fancy moves I thouglrt I made out pret$rwell.

GROWING WTITIOUT SCHOOLING #56

DISCUSSION: INVOLVING KIDS IN HOUSEWORK trip I don't want to lay on thern I trl.ly hope firithem ttrat they wlll come to see for

WORK OR PLAY? WardoRezac MN wrltes: I found I had a lot ofresPonse to the dialogue betrveeen Donna and Ruth Matilsky ('InvolvingKtds lnWork," GWS #54)' Iwas raised in ahomewherewe (ldds)were exoected and requlred to do household tasks,

if*. wer. asled to perform some such "ttd duty, there was no room for a "No, thankyou' I'd rather not." As a consequence, I intemalized the oncept that "good" people

are helpfi.rl and nerrer refuse to urork. As a ctrild I'ivas very afratd to lose my mother's approval, so I became a "mother-pleaser," arrd a "people-pleasef'as an adult. u)hafyou get from a system like this

-

lc,ksgcd- avery helpful, givlngPerson - on

the outside. Wtrat came along with the packa.qe was

procrasflnadon and resentrnent

ina told unawareness ofwhat I really liked arrd wanted to do. Procrastlnation is

a

conformist's subtle rebellion against the coercive force of another person's will. As a 32 vear-old motherof tun. I reEularly 'procrastinated and resentei household tasks, particularly washing dtshes, which I alurays approached with an irrward sigh of r6sgnation. (Interestin$y enough, the dishes were my primarlr asstgned task as achild.) I rernemberverv dtstlnctly the awareness breaking overme orieday thaithe truthwas that I drd rot mtrd doing dtshes, that it:r fact I actually enJoyed the warmwater and the process of bringfngorderand cleanliness to the kitchen, and that the onry tlme I did not enjoy theJob vraswhen I felt pulled away from it bvneeds of the children - in otherumnds, the'onlv ume I did not like the work at hand was w6en ttwas tru$ notappropriate forme to be dotngtt. Then, a couple ofyears later I read The [avail. here, $8.95 + Post.l and was profoundly moved by a Passage in which the author descrtbes a dtfflcult, hot, scraprry c:u1oe portage. The EuroPeans were expehencing exhausdon, paln, frustration, anger and sEess. Then the a111hs1 r€alized that the Indian people, under tlre very same condltlons, rperejoyous, relaxed, and having jtrn- itwas "play" for theml Suddenly, lots of thlngs fell tnto placc ln my thinlong. if someone ais{gnedtha1ob of urattCngaUout 3-4 mlles and hftdngaball with a stlck, trying to get tt into little holes' we would all moan and groan and consider it an impositionand ayuclcylob. Yet, the same thingL considered "iun,"'"flay," in our culture - an afternoon ofgolf. I can see now that there ls no basis for anv real dtsdncdon between'bork" and "phy." I have learned that there are only two wayi to do anything: from my own intemal modvadon, or responding to outslde modvaflons. What I ffnd happens as a result

bdtaumCmept

ofworldng fromextemal motlvadons is this: I find I feel resentful if my family doesn't appreclatewhat I am doing or have done' I've to

t

."g"lze ttris

"6r".moflves ar€ rnJr

as

idead

gfveaway

that

all rvrong.

All of this has lead me to where I am as rquirtg help from my ldds. I trted that ire the past, atid *hene.rer I iid I felt rnstantly uncomfortablewitlt the endre scene' Thekids far as

reactedwith resentmentand I could see myselfas achild in the same situation. It is a

themselves that anythtngyou do can be enloyableand fun tftt ts whatyou are supposed to be and want to be doing - even cle-antng totlets, hangtng laundry and washing floors. In loolidng back on my Me I see that the onlywayl could havebeenopen to thatdtscovery myselfwas to orperience (with a shock of awareness) the fact that I was often happlerwhen I did thework thanwhenl didn't. es longas someone mademedo the work, I'd ne'ver be able to see the truth.

" CONTINUUM CONCEPT'' IN MODERN LIFE ISS;/ I sent a cqp g

ofWatdo

s

btter to

RuthMatdsky , tulro replieil: I agree wtth Wanda's analysis ofwork and play. I've nouced achangetn myown

attttudes tounrd what iswork andwbat is

play even sinc.e I wrote to Donna last summer. However, I don't thtnk that recognizing a

situafl on instantly resolves difliculties. I, too, was deeply affected by rcading

fhe

Cqtttttuum@ncqpL I was determtned that I would carry our ttrtrd child constantly and put her ln our bed at ntght - tlnt she wor:Id be our confinuum baby. Well, laura's birth was at home and she has sleptwith us slnce day one, and I have carrled her as much as possible durtr4l the past ten months, but it wasn't long after her btrth that I realized that in our cultu-re itwould be impossible forme to live up to the tdeals I'd set for myself' The Indtans Jean Ltedloffwrites about lfued and worked together. When a mother in that society needs someone to hold thebaby' there ts another person arrailable. She does not have to rel5ron theautomobile to go shopping, banlidng, vrsiftig, etc. Physical$, socletlr has encouraged her to be strong enouEh to do phystcal labor. There are far fewer-possessions to take care ofand keep track of. In addidon, the culture seems to be

united ln thetrattttude toward carryingout

daiv Lvtng tasks. Whtle ourchlldrenare

mainlv lnlluenced by us, thev are also expoGd to other children onthe block, their gr;ndparents and nurnerous otherpeople whose atUtudes are fardilferent. They hear otlrer people's viewpofuets on what is work and what is plav. So'md?ry aspects of "civlltzed" living are complicated to an:angie and cumbersorrr to car4r out. Particularly tn thewinter, our famity mtght never se€ any other people if we did not make appotntments to get together with other families. Maldng an appointrnent means beinA sornewhere on dme - a deadline. Oursocletvis ftlled wtth deadlines and time constrainis. Stor€s are oPen certaln hours, people work set times each day, beaches are i-ird.d ott *..kends and empqr on weekdays. Many places do notwelcome chtldren and babysitters must be scheduled for pardcular dmes. The examples go on and on,but the point ls that tt ts hard to approach lMng ln theway that Wanda suggests when there are all these expectatlons from society to conform to lts schedullngdemands. Forawhile afterlaura s blrth I was angry hause I felt that living as we do - ln a nucli:ar familv in the suburbs where father is out of the house much ofthe day - was so


10 abnormal that none ofm5r elforts toward a continuum Me could do us any good. I was angry that there was no tribe around me to help with the older children when I was involvedwtththebaby. Whenl needed to rest, that meant that there would not be anyone to make dinneror to change thebaby's diapers. BothTerrv and Iweretired and I was resentfirl that I couidn'tJust relax and enJoy my new babv. -

ninally, I decided thatthiswas the patll wewere on and thatwe could only do whatwe could do. Thechildrenwould notbe irreparably harmed for Me because of the lack of a tribe, and theyurculd i:e fact ultimately benelit from all the thtngs I u-ras able to do To

forthem.

bring ttrts backto thearea ofwork

and play. Atthe end of the secflon tnwhich she describes the canoe portagp, Jean Liedloff says that afterwatchlng the Indians she was ableto alsoget"into theexperlence" and have agood time. Howwer, she goes on to say, "But soon my sense of emanc'ipatlon again gave way to the tyranrry of habtt, to the

greatwelght of cultural condiflontng that onlya sustatned conscious effort can countermand. I did not rnake the necessar5r elfort and therefore came away from the expedidon without much profit from the revelaflon." I thtnkthatthis is thebottom linehere.I have recognlzed a need to change myselfand my attachment toward getung thlngs done. This lrrvolves a natural evoluflon toward simplifytng our life and creatlng a trlbal feeling among the people wlth whomwe interact. I know that the clrtldren watch us and ourreacdons to situaflons, then copy our attitudes toward housework, etc. Hou'wer, we can't change overnf ght. So thlngs are happenkrg on two levels here. I ammedttadngeachdayand ffnd

myself becomlng more relaxed about accompltshtng thtngs and getUng lnto the experlence more and morewhen I do household tasks. I rec.ogntzed thts fall thatl really lilcebetng a household managler. I like doi.ng the work ln the house. The ldds pick up on ttris and very often approach household tasks like games. Sara sets the table ltke an ardst, Jacob vacuums expressfuely, However, on the second levelwe stlll live in our suburban house and have not dlscarded all of our deadllnes and time constralnts. Take the e:rample ofballeL Sara sflll ltkes to go to ballet at a certain appointed tlme each week. I have to

arrangeforababysltterata

particular time tn order to take her. I am often required to tell tlre ldds to do ccrtaln thlngs that wtll help the sttuation. Often they are very agreeable, Sometlmes ifs hard for them to understand the time constralnts that edst - to understand that ifs necessary to perform a task nowbecausewe can't do inotherone belicre this gets done. I try to be lovlng, supportlve and understandfng but somedmes I'm not perfect either and tmth to tell, I lssue cpmrnands. Sometlmes I yell. Not alrvays, Not errcn mostofthe tlme, but tt happens, Anyway, as we all get more centered, tesit'eoal-od6nted and less attached to results I exfrct that thtngs will flow more smoothly. Meanwblle, I'm contentwlth where we are.

WORKING TOGETHER Susan Rlchman (PN lrois often urllten us chlldren atd tortxtald.chores, so f aslced her to rc spord as welL SIre ttxote :

afuft

understand exactly what Wanda s saying and thtnk ifs very lmportant, though I I

reallzed that I don'tcome fromabackground llke hers - I don't remember feeling terrlb! coerced to do household Jobs, or terribly

resendul. But neltlrerwas I pardcularly aware of the rrork lrrvolved ln a house, or parflcularly helpfi:I. When I was on my outn, wlth no mother to reollg do tt all, I shourcd whatwere perhaps my tnre colors. I was a procrastinator, a putter-olfer par excellenc.e, but I don t really thinkitwas fromdeepseated feelings ofanger at rry coercftre upbringing. Itwas my "Jote-de-vtvre" thatJust couldn t admit that such mundane things as neatentng really needed to be done. I'm a nahrrally stde-tracked typewho bllthely leaves trails of pnrJectswhereverI go and then eventually feels depressed and wondering at the rness, Most family argprrrents in ourhouse are abouthousework and howto divide itequftablyand fairly (aqguments mostly prompted by rrc, when I feel dumped on or like a very poorly paid maid). But tn splte of the contlnulng dllficulties, t]rere have been lots of ltghts tre ttrts tunnel of housekecptngl, tlmeswhenweVe all worked together well and happtly and the house even shows it ablt. One thing that has really helped the ktds feel posiflrrc (usuallyl) about helpi:rg is a regularly scheduled famrly cleanup every eventngaftâ&#x201A;Źrsupper. They knowto expect tt,

ifs nota surprise sprungon themtn tlle

mtddle oftheir play - the ttmlng ts right, and probably thatls half the secretofgalrdng tlreir cooperatlon. Right after cleanup tlme the ldds begtn thetr speclal flmewlthHoward for the wentng and I get my speclal ttme to

tpe

and wrtte in the shrdy. I nener do

houseivorkatall durlng my spectal ttme

alone; I nerrer let myself be dlstracted by all the undone things around the restofthe house.

Ourcleanup flmealso has anolflclal tlme ltmit of 15 mlnutes, often ttmed wtth a tlmer. Seemsanyone (orenus) canface the idea of cleaning up tf tfs only for 15 mlnutes

and we know good thtngs ale comtng rtiht afterwards. I usua[r wrtte down on a chalkboard what I'd ltke errcryone to do, even 3 -year-old Molly, but I rnalce tt clear that tf someone has a dilferent tdea for aJob, thry can suggest that, and we can negoflate a

changeofplan.

I always find that a sptrtt of play ard deltglrt helps us clean up better and keeps us ln good sptrits. Itwas refreshlng to me to flnd that I dtd not have to turn lntoadrlll sergeant

- tfsJust anotherarea of our liG thatwe can ltrrc well and happiV, amaztng$ enough. Ttre ldds love "fooltng" me -

to have helpfi:l klds

sending me out of the room whtle the1r "secretly" do aJob to surprtse me. I usuall5r say (theatrtcally) as I leave that I glress I'll have to do theJob later myself, or maybe I could hlre a matd, or maybe I'llJust nerrer do the dlshes or mop the floor agatn. They love tt, laugh, and rlAht to tL -set sec:r,etly One day recently Jacob made a huge mess ln the ltvlng room - I thtnk ltuas a sofa pillow house adorned wlth sheepskins and ir:lers and blocks and at least two dozen stulfed toys. Now I quite enJoy their buildtng efforts, but I harre my ltmlts, and thts construcflon was Just f:lllng apart and gettlng trampled on. It uras almost supper tftne, and I thlnkl madeoneofmynottoo tnftequent ultknatums: 'Uacob, I told you thts had to be cleaned up before supper - GETTO ITI"Thisytelded tlrc usualJacob reacflon tea::s and tmmedi,ate raclngloutofttre roorn I could see itrpould be fnrttless tocrontlnue the heary approach, but tt sflll amazes me that I

was able to swltch gears. Itlaybe I partly realized howorrcrwhelming theJob was to Jacob (doesn't talrc much to overwhelm him) and that lJust cpuldn't realtstically expect hlm to do tt all by hlmself. Jessewas still in the roomwtth me, so I sald consplratorily to him, "kf s surprlseJacob - let's clean up this roomybrhJm." This appealed to Jesse's sense of play, and we ever so quletly got to work, spealdng only tn stagp whtspers, and trying our best to keep Jacob out of the room. I'm not sure lfJesse spread the secret to Jacob, or if JacobJust guessed tt hlmse[, but soonJacob was calling out that ur.pwere to keep out of the kitchen. He was busy doing the dtshesl I also make a btg point of thanldng the ldds for thelr help, usually by potndng out the

otherumrk Iwas able to getto because they tooko'veraJob I unuld've had to spend time doing. 'Uacob, I nerrerwould harre been able to rearrange thls shelf tf it hadn't been foryou doing the dtshes. And if s so good to have someoneto talktowhile Iwork here in the ldtchen." Thafs another polnt about people in Tlv C-rorfi nl:um Corep t ff nd tng most work fun - theywere not separated offby themselves at tasks, butwere tn a large social group, laughtng and talldng.

WhenI readWandas letteraloud to my

ldds for thelr reacdon, Jesse sald, 'Well, I thlnk tlrere's a pafi. kr Illde Wnten sort of about that, where the girls thought they only wanted to playarxC do nowork and thea motherlet themforaweek to teach thema lesson,." We all ran lmmedlately and found the book, curled up on the sofa and read, and howled and laughed over the troubles the girls brought on themselves, the boredom they felt, thec'omplete tg;norance thegtrls had about household tasks, the mess of a mealJo prepared. Made us all realge agaln how good It ls to knonr sometlrlng about tlre pracdcal slde of Me funcflons, the day to day stulf, The story made me reallze, too, how easy tt ts (in our culture, at least, lf not tn The Ccrtfrttulr nConcqpt) for people to fall tnto belng happfly dependent on otlrers (mostly on mothers) for all thelr bastc datly needs. The March gtrls had slmply been utterly unaware ofall theworkand effortand ttme thaturcnt lnto keeptng thetr home going - ttwas all sort of backstage stuff for them and they were Just happtly part of the gaily dressed audlence. I want my ldds to knowtheumrldngs betrlnd the scenes, and I want ard need them to be pa.rtofthecrerv, too. I make a potnt of letdng ttre ldds know, very clearly, that housekeeptng ts not one of rny stlong polnts, not somethlng that comes easll5r to me, but somethtng I constantly stmggle wlth and hanrc to focus on. I tell them clear$ about new strategles I'm tr5rlng, new plans of acflon, helpful books I'm readlng, and acflvely enllst thetr help. We dlscuss dlfrculfles, howwe mlglrt rrnnage better, tools that could help, urays to usâ&#x201A;Ź our tlrne better so we don't sperd all day cleantng up and do nothlng else - ln short the ktds are part oftlre solutlon, or at least part oftrldng to find soludons wlth me. It is thelr home too,

afterall.

CHOOSING CHORES AdonlcrounDloneWet{

Ca$anlounote:

After readlng "Involving Xlds tn Work" our "chore llsf'

(GWS #54), I wanted to share

wfthyou. Errcry morntng after brealdast we GROMNG WTTTIOUT SCHOOLING #56


11

makealtstofallthe chores thatneed to be done that mornlng. Thenwe take tums choostr4l ourchores for the mornlng, Jade (9) and Lauren (6) taketums ptcldngfrst" and then theothcrgets to b€ fustforotlrerthlngs, llke stttlng ln tlre fr,ont s€at ofthe car, tlnt day. In fact cachofus almostalways dtooses the same chores errcry morntng, slncewe tranre dtfferent ablltdes, ltkes and dtsLkes. But lf someonewants a change, she can hale iL We make lfsts durlng tlre day lfwe need tlrem. In the begtnntng we wmte the chore llst ou! but nowwelust talk about tL I encourage them to try out new chores, because I get tlred of always dolng the same olrcs. Before rpe started thts systern" the chores were baslcally all mtne, but I would ask and somedmes order people to help me. I wasn't happywlth the way that felt - parttcularly wlth havlng to yell for help when there was too much to do. The chlldrenureren't happy elttrer. Iast summerwe made stgn-up ltsts for chores when rpe urentcamplngwith my slster, her ldds, and my nelghbot's lidds. Ttratwas fun because the ldds dectded whatwork needed tobe done and gottochoosewhat they wanted to do. Itworked sorpellthatwetried tt athome and ltworks here too.

PAYING FOR CHORES And qr tlu rclated srtbJat oJ allotuarres, d0scussed lrr GWS * 55 ard. Ur several ptevbtr's lss nes, Amber We sternlr.n (WI) urites : Stnce the sumrner, urc have been paying Kame (6) for household chores. At ffrstve were reluctant, as urc'd ltke her to wilrngl5r pitch tn, and we dtd notwant to emphasize mon€y. Butwe dectded to gtve tt a tr5r as she had rec.ently lost lnterest fix the work she has helped us wtth stnce babyhood. WeVe been qutte pleased wlth tlre results. She's cutent whlle uorlidng, sattsffed and proud when aJob ts completed. She can competently handle a number of tasks scnrbbtng stnks, rtnslng dlshes, maldng beds, loadtng the laundry rnachine, setflng the table and preparlng food. She works when she wants to, at aJob that appeals to her and ls

OK'dbyus. The rmney she eams ls hers to spend as she chooses. We pay her l5 cents aJob enough, we flgrred, to errcour:age savlng. We worried tbat shewould spend it on cand5r and gum. Thts she dtd the flrst s€venl rpeeks - we trled to refraln from comment aswewatched herconsurre an lnordlnateamount of sugar. Once she bought twehrc suckers and dtstrtbuted them to the rrctghborhood ldds. Then she sawasmall toyatastore that she dectded to saveup for. Shehad themoney wtthln aweek ortwo, andwas enthusiastlc about her purchase. Stnce then, she ts loathe to waste (herword) rnorrey on candy or guirL and recently bouglrt a doll wtdch she had declded to save for. Ttre chance for her to earn money lras eased tenslons between us, She ls no longer ln the posltlon ofasklng or begglng for a toy or

Itemwtrlch she liorowswewould not ordlnartly buy. She knows she can eam the money and does not s€em to begrudge the work lnvolved. There ls a sense of control and lndependence ln thls sltuadonwtrlchwe feel wlll serrrc herwell orrcrthe5rears. [SS: ] The clfl&en I krww ulp ane consclcns o;lsau tg tlelr oun nwteg

nost or

sperldbg xwlselg ane tle qtes wtw rquladg hatn noney ard are usd, to harldllrg tL GROWING WTT}IOUT SCHOOLING #56

WATCHING CHILDREN LEARN CHILDREN'S ANSWERS IzlXo.

ktg, autlor

oJRadlng and Lovlng

(awflaHetse, $8.95 +posL, sentus tlcse ererptsJromatalk sle ganx btArtsfroha:

As babtes grow they are lllled wtth a trememlous c'urtostty, They need to flnd out how thlngs happen, what thtngs are made of, whatpeoplewtll da And as theygeta llttle older, lf s mlxed wlth nmnder, and a sense of magtc. I became aware three or fouryears ago that thts umnd€rlng curtosltywas betng lnsdtudonallzed , that publtshers rllerc getung books out forunder-flves that treated them as tf they were tn school, turntng the natural exploraflon of the world that came from thelr own heart and from thelrown llfe tnto quesdons they would nerrcr actually ask, and answers thry would nerrcr actually stand sflll

and ltsten to. You loeow how somedmes a small chrld wtll askyou a quesdon, and becauseyou have

suddenV become aware ofyourself as a wonderful provlder of knowledge and wtsdom, you begtn to tell her about ttrls...and about thls...and about thts...andyou don't noUce that tlle chlld's qles harrcglazed over until - lf she sdll has sptrtt and hasn'tyet derrcloped ttrts sense of havtng to be klnd to people, whtch ltttle glrls derrclop rrcry early she says, '\[/hy are you golr4; on and on?' or "\iltryareyou talldng so much?'or "I don't want to know all about that." IVe heard ctrlldren say tlrese thtngs to adults. Thts can be a shocldng slap tn the face, but lf s very

goodfororr.

I rememberlwas lnacafewlth a grandchlld, whowas th€n 3. Someone had left

a box of matches on the table, and Arvl wanted to takettand ffnd themand glvett back to them. I satd, "Better leave it on the table. They'll rememberwhere they've Ieft lt and come back to ffnd it." Then, uamtrg to mg ttene, lwent on, "If s like Mummy Birds. When thetr bables fall out of the nest - " 'You mean out of the c-ot. Bables don't fall out ofnests. They fall out ofcots."

fDoggedly conttnutng:) " - tfyou don't move them, the Mummy Btrd wlll come and

find them-"

'Mumrry Btrd? You mean Mummy Berg. You're a Mummlr Berg aren'tyou? But I llke burgers best. You can eat them. " Imagtnel All thts complacent lnformatlon rrshlng to cerne out, and ltwas as if a rollrcHqgwkrd had come and pushed ttdl backtnmymouthagatn. And I rememberonc.e havlng some

chlldren staywlth me. You knon'howthcystt

on the loowttha rolloftollet pa.perte their hands?They often ltke to take it off the hook and hold tt.And soon, somehow, tfslooptng and hvtstlng and cotllng and windtng, ltke rlotous snakes. all over the bathroom. SoI satd to them, brlghtly, wtththat awfu I patrrontzin( mantpuladveness of a Jolly adult, "Whafs the dtfference betrpeen an adult and actrtld?" I planned that theyumuld say, "I g;lve up," and then I'd say, "Chlldren use more totlet pa.per. " But they stared at me, and then Arvl, thls same chlld, sald, "Children live

longer." My mtnd alw'ays whlrls when chlldren say things llke ttrls. It's llke dlUng a

kaleldoscope.The patternchanges

-

and lnto

somethtng qtrite unforeseen and breathtaklng. Therewas I, who had trrvented a questton to;fit an ansrttq I hd - lt was my answer I was reall5r tnter€sted tn. And there c/as thts child, whoseanswerwas cornlng from her own real wonderlng about the world.

THINKING BY HIMSELF Narry FIerc MA) turltes: Mostofthe tlmewhen one ofthe children theanswerrigfit

has aquesflon, we look for

away. Maybel krrow, orMtchael (thelrfather) does, orwe look tt up ln abook, or talkwtth someone elsewho knows. We take our search as faras the personwho asked the quesdon

wants to go, oras faras anyofuswants, or we even go off on anotheraspect or subJect altogether. This has been trnportant to me lrrwhat I sawas myJob: helplng the ctrlldren ( lO, 7, 4, and I l/2) learn at home. However, because our voraclously explortng youngiest has needed constant watchtng, I baven'tbeen able latel5r to follow our usual course of acdon loolidng the answer up rlgfrt away. Sttdrqg nur:stng ttrts half-asleep baby, I was filled wtth frustr:ation and guilt about not dotngmy "Job"wtth the olderones. Then I started really llstentng to Nathan (7) talldng about a subJect he had had quesdons about several weeks ago. A.s he talked, I was struck by how much he had ffgured outJust by thfrrlc{rEr about it for that long thinktng over arxC around and through, by hfrnself, It happens all the dme, ofcourse. I see it so eastly !n the baby, and ln the chlldrenwho "talk out thetr thinldn$' a lot with me, but I had nerrerrealzed ttas fullyas atthat momentwlth a chltd who doesn't "talk out hls thf nkirqg" wf th me very oft

en

RECOGNIZING LETTERS Ms KeJer (PN wrde Los t y e ar : By trts fourth btrthday my son Dale recogprlzed a fewletters in the alphabet, e.g. T, D as the ftrst letter ln hls narrrc, and B for his

brother Brian (6). He often watched Brlan prlnt hls narne so he came to know what the letters ln Brlan's name looked like. He also lnew how to spell Brlan's name out loud, but hecould notname the letters ln anyotlrer context, except the B . One day we went to the giantgrocery storewtrtch had ala{ge slgn above tt tdenUffing the store. Dale said, 'Momm5r look, the N and the T are cpnnected. " was not aware that he could tdent$ an N so I asked, "How did you krrcw thatwas an N?" He replied, 'That's easy, IJustrvent to theend ofBrian's narne." He knewthatletterwas the I

sameas the liast letterln his brother's name, so tn hts mind he sald the letters, starting wtth the firstletterand saytngthemall undl he got to the one he needed. Soon afterwards, he used that same learntng techntque to ldenttfy all the letters in the alphabet, He has a F-lsher Hce school deskwtth letters thatllt tn thelrspac€tna tr:ay. He has played wtth them olland on for severalyears, but now he started playtngwtth It serrcral times a day, poindng to each letter


t2 as he sang the

alphabet song. He started

spelling vnrds werywhere, from the cereal box at breakfast to road slgns. [tle alsowanted to knowwhat theuordsurcre.) Whenenerhe

dtdn tknonr a letter, hewould start saylng the alphabet unfll he got to that letter. He knew wirere tt belonged-In ttre alpnafet but he had notyet memorlzed tts narne. After about a month of uslng this techntque to lCentf letters wtth only an occaslonal mlss, he nonr knows all the letters wtren he sees them. I have tlroroughly enjoyed uratchtng thls process. I'm sure tfl'd trled to teach htm the letters ltwould hane taken alot longerand would not harrc been as enJoyable for etther of

LEARI{ING TO TELL TIME Stephanle,I udg (BC) urttes:

Watchlng my dauglhter Tess work to butld her ldeas about ttme and telltng ttme has been as btg a leamlng errcnt for me as for her, I thtnk For about slx monttrs, roughl5r ftom ageg to 3 1/2, sheused anexperlmentofher owntvenflonwtrlch seeirred pr€tty tngenlous to me. Shewould noHcc wlrer€ one hand of the clockwas, and then ask me to s€t the ldtchen tl.mer for some tnterval - flve rnlnutes or ten mlnutes or thlrty mlnutes. When the tlmer wentolf, she'd runto theclocktoobserve the posldon of the trand she was watching. She kept ttrls up for an hour or two errcry few days. For awhtle, shewas otnrlously perplexed by the results of herer(perfurEnts. I answered any quesdons she asked, but dtd notvolunteer

anvinformadon -

Durlng the same pertod, sheurould tell "pretend tlme" -'It's elerrcnt5r-seirerrt5r-two o'cloclc " She lsrew that ttrls was not the way wewereused to tellingttme, but she liked the game, and she certafnly knew that time is "told" with a sertes of numbers. She gave up the clock and lidtchen tlmer e4perlment at sorne potnt and I never learned from herwtrat shewas able to llgure out from tL When I reintnded h€r of lt ('Rernember whenyou used to...") she resumed the game for two or three rounds and then dropped tt and

In sorne sense, lt looks ltke she has retrreated or "lost ground" ln her tlrrr-telling abtlttles, but I don't really tbtnk that ls so. I thtnk that all ofher enperlence ard data ts irt there cooking and she ts approdmattng more and rmre closely, the "rlghf'way to tell tlnre, loltla ut angore teLIry ter lulw to do tL

Shels not reallylnterested ln anyofthe chlldren's books about how to tell Ume, but she ls endlessly lnterested ln heartngfrom us what flme lt ls and what tlme we do thtngs.

Inthe "Notes toTeachers" that accompar5r the Mlquon math materials, Lore Rasmussen says, 'Ttrere must be a ttme lapse between erqrsure to an tdeaand tdepraert use oftlrat idea- Chlldren need tlme for dlgesdon and clarlficaUon." I remernberthe borlng and confu slng "Dtscovery" asslgnments I dtd in geometrywhere, ln a class perlod offorty mlnutes, I was supposed to collectdata and "dtsc€vet'' by myself some geometrlc prlnctple wtrlch took eons for tlre human race to comprehend ln the ffrstplace.

[#:]Inanrreu bolclel Everyone Is Able: Erploding the Myth of kaming Dtsabilfdes f$3 +post/, Elsa Har.s,jomeflg onour stqlf, wrltes abriratblng able totell ttne

lugl.hfl

ang

elIet

stle wos 7 2, I m tntere sted to

lvar

havewatched Tese lookanraywith glazed eyes when awell-meanlng teen-aged frtend trted to showher thattbe-big-handpotets-to-this-wtrile-the-ltttle-hand -potntsto-thaL Tess isworklngso hard to ffgurethtg out by herself, ln her own way, I have had to

otlwr stodes about thts, ard a krrp,w wlether tlc prolferatiot oJ diqxal drcks is lnutag

stt on myself marry, rnany tlmes to keep from helplng or correcdng her. But I am so glad I'm learntng that lesson. Sornetlmes I watch her studyand study the clockand then shehrrns to me and says, "Mommy, I don'tknowwhat tlme lt ls," and I amfllled wtth awe at her perslstence and intelllgenc€. I am pret$r sure that lf shewere older many cliassroom teachers would see her as "falltngl' or "not

MAKING SENSE OF THINGS

I

trying."I amso grateful forall I'rrclearned from otherhomeschoolers and frrom GWS thatlets me see bowmlracubus and perfect thfs leaming really fs. tSS:l I

unrds

lfTess's reyftlsal to use

lcr

'sgstent crcnresJromller desbe to ma;bh her u:ords to tluisc oJ tle adul* otowd tvr, atd. her grousing attnreness that slte Is

do@ tlis. Itls as {ata'e stqe children ore hoppg to b'

,lghf

In their

{rr

rotget theproess

apponnublA

irn/oljon oJ dult language and.

cnstorn btatorother stogethls stqs betg safisfubtg.

hasntplayed ltslnce.

She also dropped t}e "pretend tlme' and trrvented aumndei'iully accurate system of her own. Sberpould say, "2 top o'clock' fcr 2:OO and "8 bottom o'clock" for 8:3O' She used "top" and'bottom" conststently to describe the poslflon of the mtnute hand. She dtd not issi4n names to the hands themselves, ltke btg fund and Uttle hand. For the quarter hours. she at flrst sald, " I 2 stde o'clock" whtch could be 12: 15or 12:45. Then she started to say, "12 slnk-sldeo'clock for 12:15and "12 sto\re-slde o'clodr" for I 2:45. Sornehowshe dlscprrcred the pa.ttem for narnlngthehour, When t}e trand bbetq/e€n numbers, she nearly alnrays names ttre correct hour, readtng the smaller of the tqn numbers. She dtd go through serrcral days of asHrgquesUons ltke'Whtch ts larger, 5 or 6?" and I suspectshelnctrporated ttrls tnformaflon tnto her tlme-tellargurork. Shortly before she tumed 4, she gave up hersysterr, and currentl5r she tells the ttne only when lt happens to be an even hour. Sometlrrrcs I ask herwhat Ume tt ls (as a €enutne quesdon, nelrcr as a "tesf') and lf tt ls "Z;45 or 7itO, shewtll say "l don't know." She nour rcads the tlme from anywatch or clock, howerrcr, where prcnlously she urorked only wttll the ldtchen dock.

the nextyearfor thlrd grade. fuainwewould ontellhgtirne and this time a fewmorewould start out already knowing how (mostlikelybecause theywere ayear older) but the results were pretty much the same, Maury had quite a few llttle workbooks wlth clocks to match hour hands with times, etc. over a couple ofyears, and once I'd shown her how to do one she could do the whole page, but sl'e m,tldn t tell ttne. Tbenone night she cameand toldmeitwas 8:2O, All ofasudden errcrytlrtngclicked and she could tell ttme. I thfnk thls is howmostleamlngtakes place and ourresponsibftty ts to be there to answer quesdons, see that the environment is incounagtng, and stay out ofthe way. hane the lessons

TELLING TIME IN SCHOOL SharcnVlrcsMNutrites: Before Maury (8) was born, I

taugltt

second and thlrd grade for three years in a small, frtendly country school. A lot of people harrc sald thatbelngateacher musthelp mein homeschooling or errenJust ln belng a parent. In some ways lt has, but not tn the ways thry ttrlnlc As Maury grew and leamed more and more, itwas obvious thatshewas leamlng thtngswithout aryone teachtng her. I thought about the way I had taught chlldren to read or

addortell timeand realzed that nrostofwhat I

dtdwas unnecessary.

Teltngtlrne has always been afavorlte example ofmine because even at the ttme it was clear that my teachtreg had rrcry ltttle effecl In a class of 22 ctrlldren there rpere aluraysafewwho could tell drne to tlreminute before the lessons even started. After three or four days ofpracfic.e and lnstrucfion, I had mavbe orre or two morewbo were conffdent, a greit -"iotitywho could recognize the hour orhalf-hour - atleastthatweek - arrd several who stil had no idea. Because the schoolwas srnall, I had some of the same students back

- pos,itfire

t

nq atlrcl

Wendg Relntnger 0D) urttes: Occaslonally Erica (6) asks for suggFsflons from rre as to what she can do,

but tncreastn$y she ls lnventingherown urays of learningwhat shewants to know. I

amnot sayingthatl am notlnvolved in

Ertca's learning, or that I leave lt to her to ffgrre thfngs out by herself. She asks for a great deal of my input, attentlon, energr, and time atcertain stagles inherproJects. There seems to be a delicate balance between my betng avatlable to help and stepping ln to gutde. She lets me knowwhen I am stepping in herway too much. Ttrat developing trust in her abtltty to gutde herself is also helpturg me to keep thebalance as I strlve to meetherneed for my trvolvement but not my direcdon. We have lots ofbooks, and often she'll pull out a book pore over the pictures for a wlrtle, ask one of us to read part of it to her, and then be off to worlidngwtth that knowledge in herway. An enample ofthis is a book called Atr Unfi,r' r se by Nafi onal Geographtc. Several pages ofthe book show fanctful creatures that could llve on dilferent planets or moons ofplanets. Each plcture is adapted to its particularenvlronment. Afew days ago, Erica had us read the descrlpflons accompanvins tlrc pa€es to her several times throug;hout th"e day. 'Iirat night before bed she sald that tomorrow shewanted me to tell her thec.ondidons oneach planetin the solar qlstem, and she would deslgyr a creature for each one. So the next day she brought me the book, ule examined temperature, atmosphere, typeofsurface, and soon, ofeachplanet, as she pulled out her patnts and pens and created creatures to sutt them. Erlca tends to see the world through her art. Her maJor actirdty is drawing. She also paints, and sculptswith clay. Whaterrershe studies errds up incorporated into her art in some ways, sometimes for days. We started telllng storles to Erlcawhen shewas about l8 months old. We had adopted a strav cat and named himJesse, and then tlre 'Uess; storles" begart. My husband started tellinA her stories, and soon 'Uesse storles" were rcquested more often than books' We told very simple stories, often made up aswe GROWING WTIHOUT SCHOOLING #56


13 told them. We told storles ofJess€ getttng lost and getttng found, Jesse clirnbir4;a tree and having to learn to come down, Jesse maktng friends with other anlmals, Jesse gettlngwet in the ratn, and anything that came to us that was a part of herworld. The'Uesse stories" somehow errolved farbeyond the actual cat

into somethingthat seemed to representa way of leaming about her feelings and her wider surroundings. She had favorite stories that she asked for. and shewould sometimes join in the telling. An interesting thing: when we were out of ideas, a few times ure asked

her

to tell us aJesse story. This was always met with "Nol Nol Nol You tellJesse storyl" Somewhere around the age of 3 or 4 years, Erica began to lncorPorate theJesse itories into her"art. She made drawtng after

drawing ofJesse doing the things ln the stories. Gradually she began drawlng her own stories. Now, at age 6, she has invented four new characters who romp across her papers in story after story, now c$mpletewtth phonetically spelled vmrds in balloons. She brings her stories to us and tells us about them. Her need now s€erns to b€ creatlng and telltng stories. Very oftenl seehereveryday experiences expressed through her stories. I find myself fascinated as I watch Erica, seeinghowshe relates to theworld and makes sense of it all. She somehow is pulling many diverse thlngs together into an integrated whole - feclings, facts, fears and lmages. I find that I stand in awe of her pourcr, sometimes. Myrespectforherabtligr to leam and to direct her learning grows. I am learntng from watching her; my trust ln my own lnner knowing is tncreasing. Some llght thatwas dimmed in my childhood is now, through my children, strengthening ln its intensity. Some decp empowering of the vttal life force is occurring in our lives, and homeschooling is one cause and expression ofthat,

INTERESTED IN EI.JROPE Dadene Izster (CN utrites: Not concerned with whether his peersi are interested or not, Damian (8) has really taken offin an unusual direcflon. He's become passionatelydetermined to travel to Europe, as; soon as possiblel He studies maps daily, reads books about European countries,

practices German, French and Spantsh with some records he got from the library, and writes to pen-pals he got from Europe. He is particularly attracted to England. He says he's going to have a travel agencywhen he grows up. He loves to play a game we have called 'UburneyThrough Europe" and has all of Europe's capital cides and flags memorized. All ofthis he does strictl5lon tds own stearn I just stand backinwonder. By respecting his interests and giving him time to dwelop them, I ambeing the biggest help to him, I feel. It bothers me a httle sometimes to see himgrowingaway fromhis peers and their interests so drasflcally. But I know in my heart that it's right for him to do so. When everydayhewalks around inknlckers and a hat to feel hke an English boy, oblMous of

how he looks to others, I Just smlle. He certainlywill gow to be an interesdng adultl

WORKING WITH YOTJNG WRITER IVe become part ofan arrangementwith my friend Arnanda Bergson-Shilcock, lO-

year-old homeschooler and, in this lastyear, GROWINC WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #56

serlouswrlter, wtrtch ts as rrourtshtngforme as ltls forher, thoughwhatwe do foreach other ls not the same. Arnanda had for some ttme been serrdlng me early drafts ofher stories, whlchlqmuld commenton and then retum. Whenlvtsited her famlly te early January, Amanda and I so enJoyed unrldng togetlrer, ln-person, that Amanda asked lfwe could arrange hvice-weekly telephone calls durlng whtch she could read me her drafts, ask quesdons, and get whaterrer help or feedback she felt she needed. I enthuslasdcall5r agreed. Becausewe keep the calls to ten mlnutes each time, they have not replaced sendtng wrldng through the mall. Amanda uses them to getan tmmediate r€spons€to a speclffc part ofa story, or to tell mewhat she's plannlng or to discuss the process ofwrltingwtth someone elsewho finds the toptc fasdnattng. Whathas made the arrangement such purejunfor rne ls that, funny as lt sounds, I never have to do anythfng. Amanda calls me wtth a clear tdea ofwhat she wants to talk or ask about, and I

slmplyrespond. I care a great deal about Amanda s wriflng, delfght in tts surprlses, crlflclze lt when I thtnk tt is weak or unclear. But I am not reslconsiHe for it. I didn't tell her that she ought to call me hvice aweek, and tf she qrer tells me that she's gottenwhat sheneeds from our uurangpment, I'll be ready to step aslde or

move lnto whaterrer new posldon of helpfuleess she requests. And yet I am

anytlring but detached. I tell Amanda what I think a story needs. I suggest that she mlght want to work on one thlng lnstead of another. Somedmes she follows my suggestlons. Sometlmes she doein t. From this reladonstrlp between older, more experlenced and younger, less ocperlenc=d wrlter, I am corntng to understand what self-dtr€cted learning really means. Belng master ofher own work does not mean tlrat Amanda must learn ln Isolattorri. rather, lt means that she can lrrvolrrc other people tn thatwork and nerrcr fear that they will take tt away from her. Amand a d&ded tbat she wanted a reg;ular reader and "offlcial crttlc," as she calls me. No one told her that herwridng Me nnuld be the rtcher for ttrls arrangement, but she seems to harrc ffgured this out. She knows that she can take w'hat she wants from me and leave whatever lsn't helpfirl behind. I know that I can tell her whatever I tmly think wlthout equlvocaflng. Durlng one conversaflon, Arnanda was talkingabout removlng the narradve Inks in a story that consi,sted primarily of letters between a gfrl and her grandrnother. I had been!nfavorofthlscut, and bad urged tton several occaslons. Arnanda sald, "If I cut the

narratirc," andwenton to talk aboutwhat thatwould mean for the story. What I heard was the way she'd satd it not urhenl cut th narratfire, but f I knew then that I dtdn't have to stlfle my optntons wlth Amanda; she knew hourto handle thern And lndeed, Arnanda respects those oplnlons, listens to them, but if shecuts that narraflve, lt wtll be because she herselfbeltwes ttls rlght forthe story. This control allows Amanda a selfknory,ledge

thatwould not

be posslble lf I

clalnied (as teachers ln school often do) to know more about her work than she does. One day she told me thatshe'd thought ofan idea fora storywhen shewas almostasleep, but she'd gotten up towrtteitdownbecause she it otherwise. Another tlme she satd thatshewas settingaparUcular story aside because herfeeltngofbetng "stuck" onone of the points oftts plotwas maldng her

uras afratd of forgetting

stuck about all her storles, and she didn t want that to happen. These are reglrlar challenges ln the Me ofawrlter, and Amanda ts handltng tllem wtth a credttable amount of sldll. Yet - and thts ts cruclal - though she is flgurtng thtngs out on her own, she's not alone feel

as she does so. Wtren she calls rne up, I say,

'Yes, I've forgiotten an ldeaone too many ttmes - nowl ahrrays getuPandwritethem

down, too," or'You know, putting that story aslde wtll probably be a good tdea - I bet after a wlrtle, away to get around that problem ln the qrrlflngwlll come toyou." So Arnandats able to checkherpercepflons and declslons about wrtting agafnst someone else's ogerlence and Judgment. I, tn turn, rnarvel at the thtngs wrtters seem to harrc ln cpmmon; some of whatAmandals nouctngl too have nottced, as harrc otherwrtters whose discusslons of ttre process I've read. Arnanda and I are not equal I am not now sendlng her rny o$tn writing and aslidng for the same lidnd of response, nordo I trlde my experlence. But our reladonshlp ts hones( and lts terms are clear. She ts learning mastery and how to use someone else's help; I am leamlng about response and about what adults cando forctrtldren. Amanda dlrects herwrlflng life; I parttctpateand deltght

intt. -SS

EDMING KIDS'MAGAZINE Nelp,do la nv slc'llrrler Arnb Laln sent oJ tle nryazlrc slle ed{ts, Our Own Creations. When u.te askd. llr'r to tell tts smetlirg abtt tle preess oJ her unrk, she tDtoE: us a

apy

Lastyearwtren

I

dectded to start a

magazfure I nev€rdreamed

thatbyJanuary

987 I would have readers ln twelrrc states plus Canada and Nenr Gutnea- l am a | /2 yrears old. I am a horneschooler ard lJust started stxth grade. I'ne alurays enJoyed wrttlng, espectally short storles, plays, Jokes I

andpoems,

One day I uras collectlng some of my wrtttngs so that I could nrake aschool nenspaper (Just for rne). My mom suggested, 'lilhy don'tyou make a real magazlne and you

can gfrre anraycoples at t]re home school curriculum falr?" It sounded fun and very exctflng; - I ltked the ldea a loL I declded on the slze and format for my magazltre. I also drose a \rarlety of my wrttings to trrclude tn my flrst issue. I created puz,bs, drawings, andJoke and trtvta secdons. The rnostimportantthtr4I had to do was narrr my margazllrrc,I chose Our Otun Cratfons because I wanted to encourage my

filends to contrtbute some of thelrwdtlngs anddrawtngs. I amthe edltor of OurOwnCteotforu.I not onV selectwldch contrtbuflons wlll be used for each lssue, I sflll do a btofttte wrttlng and dravtng. I also type, enlarge and reduce drawlngs using a copler, paste-up the pages, make multiple copies of the dummy pages onto colored paper, fold and staple the pages togetherln tlre rtghtorder, and keep the rec.ords. Our

OunC\eallcrs trs a school proJect. My mom, Karen, ls my teacherand so she teaches me (or helps me flgure out for mysel$ whateverI need to know- ltketypingand ustng the copier. But I rnake thedeclslons about Orr Ourn Cleations. Sometimes I do ask her for help with an illustration tf I can't draw lt myself or flnd a child who can.


t4 Publlshlng a magadne takes a lot of time and work. Most of my rvritings count as rry language arts class for home school. The articles I wrlte are somedmes hlstory or other subjects. Thebooks I read forbook r,ariews count as readtng. Double-checldngwords tn the dicdonary is spelling. I(eeptng records of the money I collect and spend ts my math glass somsdmss. Rrblishlng a magazine is also e4penslve. Paper and postage are my btggest e4penses. My dad has arranged for me to use tlre copler at his buslness, or els€ I

couldn't allord to publish Or OwnCreatiqts. Subscrlptions are currently $3.5O forsix issues. Ow OunCreatiorts cpmes out on the l4th of wery other month, begbrnlngwith January, 1987. Contributors should write thelrname, address, age, grade, and school name (or say that they are a horneschooler) on each contributton. All contrlbuflons should be original workby someone under l8 years ofage. Themailingaddress ts 721 E. Charleston, Suite2, LasVeoas IIV 891O4. I am offering a fr,eebie for new readers.

I

will send them a frre Our Own Creatiots Writers Gt drle lfthey send me a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Also for a wrltten contribuflon (short story, poerrl article, book review, anecdote, prtzzb, oplnlon, etc.) whtch I can use, I wlll send a free cnpy of the lssue that the ttem ls publlshed in.

WRITING BOOK TOGETHER ISSIJ When Jan& *n|tJt MD) *rt us a cqg oJ a dc she'd. uillten aborut Robin Hd I rlp,tled that sle'd urtlten tt with her Jatler a.s "consulta nt " atd. that the dc was

puHishedbg "Cdcie kess, " ruhrbh Jamie had. Jourded I askd Jatnie and. terJather -ManJrd. (utho rurs tle MARYIAND HOME EDUCATION ASSOCIATION) to tell us abrft tlwir unrk t4ether, and tley resprded bg

Interuieufu eachothen

MANFRED: Jamte, do you remember

whatfirstgptyou interestd ln Robln Hood? JAMIE: Yes, ln January'86 I saw a Walt

Dlsnerr movie about Robh Hood at Gr:andma's housi. I must have seen it at least a million times. Flnally, I decided to getabook about

Robin Hood from the llbrarv.

M: Aftervou sawthe rriovte and read

somebooks iboutRobln Hood, what other ldnds of thtnss dld vou do? J: Well, I-starteil to plav Robtnwtth rnv frtends, rnade hundredS ofdrawlngs aboft hlm and errervbodvelse ln trls lifeand also made bows aird a#ows whlch I leamed how to use . In Mav I was tnvited to partlclpate tn a -the show that Communttv School bf Annapolis created. I deciiled to make rmr own plav aboul who else. Robin Hoodt Ofco-urse I flaj'ed the partofRobin, and my friends -M: oth6rroles. 'blaired The part I ltked bestwas when

the tree

fell down on the sta€e and all the actors

casuallv lAnored itl You had no thouehts aboutftEnq a book at that tlme, dtifvou? J: No, bul I had dreams about RoEh belna with me ln 1986. ISS: Thts is part of the plot of

Jamie'sbook.l

M: Yes, and thafs how the tdea ofwrtflng storv about Robln Hood came about. isn'tlt? J:-I sald, 'Vouldn t tt be ntce if Robtr could be altrrc norV?" and vou replled. 'Whv nof?" Ofcourseyou mea;t, let'siurtte a st5rv. I was exclted abirut the idea. but we were to6 busvduring the summer to start. M: Did ybu suspect tlrat thts storvwould a

becomeatbokbeftirewestarted?

J: Not at alll IJust thought thatwe would write altttle stoni. M:

Howdtd*ebeEln?

J: Well, I wrote the flr:st three chapters ln a few days by myself. You helped me edit the

thirrd chapter a little bil But tt became once I had to thlnkabout Robln corninA to our ilme. I'mvery famtltar

diltcult 6rme

with medieval Robln. but not moilern Robln.

M: From then on, we began to really work closelv toAether. I reme-rnber that it uzas mostlvvou-who-pushed us towork on the book.-But as thechapters became lonAer and more compllcated, wb had to do a lot

oI

visualizatibn and playwith dialogue. What inspired vou to kecp Aotnd J: I iretended ttFt ft6btn rpas watching me andwould beunhapw tfwewere not workinAon the book, bGiiuse heuranted to kecp thE legend alive. Also I looked forwad to working wi-th you each nght. -a M: It rvas special ft;e, I a{rec. I sometimes felt ai if I was tnllue-ncinEvour

book more thanlwanted to, thoushlManv times you were stuck for an ldea, ;nd I unirld make-several su nesdons. Somettmes vou used my suggesE5ns, sometimesyou Sould get

betterldea. J: We didn t ffnish unttl late December of '86. You rnade a lot of sugAestlons, Dad, but I alwavs made the final decGton ofwhat I was a

Aoh!

to urrtte. Sometirnes vou were too Ferslstent wlth your ideas-and I Aot an{rv. - But inost of the timiyou agreed with-whatf

wanted towrlte. M: It took another month or so to do ttre artwork. B5r the end ofJanuaryt youurere bednnlngio set tlred. - J: I fe'lt tiii:d. and I dldn'twant to do the artwork. I like freehand drawlnE and was not used todolnggraptric art The fiist w drawtrgs were interesilng buttheywere tlmeconsumlng. It's iust not mv stvlel M: I he'lped ivlth some of the artwork, and we publlshdd the book. What about COOXIE

PRTSS? J: I started COOKIE PRESS when I was 6. Ttrat's when I wrote mv flrst boolq THE READ fi BOOK. You suEEes-ted I startmvown publishlnAcompdfrv, and I namedtf - M: Ho-wdoyou feelaboutthebooh now

that ifs pubhslied? J: I leel llke I've achleved somethtn{ worthwhile, and I'm happv that tt's fudJhedt I'm satlsfted, I also hope i.ti sell enough books so I can allord to publish another bobk, when I getaround towitUngtt

PLAY HELPS PROBLEM.

princtple orwho pracdc-ed the nec€ssary sHll. Satd Dr. Bmner,'Wewere qulte stmck by the tenacitywtthwhtch the ctrtldrenin tlre play group stuck to the task. Even when their

iniflal approach was mtsguided, they ended by soMng tlre problem because theywere able to reslst fmstraflon and the temptadon to gtveup. Theyurcre playlng." (Source: "Playis Serlous Business," Fsychol4gry'tdog, | / 75.)

FIRST JOB MotAgnfulven (lA), toho has wrifrenus

bJoe abdtwfannly's t-arrls,

rants turftes:

We spent a couple ofweeks ln Key West

this month. One daywe went to all the free str€et shows, as ure dld on the next tbree or

four days. DJango (9) and Andre (fl got riglrt lnto lt, volunteerlng to bethe strillsand lettlng the showmenJuggle clubs around thetr heads and such, They also dressed up

from our Mardt Gras bag and palnted their faces. T\rrned out to be a lot of fun; DJango erten got on the evenlng news while betng in someorre's show. He made friends wlth a few ofttre performers and wtll be looktng for them ln other towns we vlsit that have this sort of thing (most of the buskers - streetperformers - travel as we do). Even after the buskers left town, DJango didn t spend all of his ttme ln the arcade - he walked around and vlslt€d the dock and expanded hls horizons. Theboys also dlscovered the localcomic book store. DJango had been trylng to ffll in the last lssue of a 4o-book collecdon and so he usually hits the telephone bookwhen we get to a new tovm. He and Andre walked over to the local comlc store every day In case somethlng newwasr ln- The last day in town, the store got a bunch of transformers in and tlre men nrnntng ttre place didn't know much about them. They hlred DJango and Andre to prlce the toys and show them how they worked. In exchange, the boys each got to brtng home a transformer and got an employee's dlscount on oornic book purehases, as well as a llrstJob eqrrience.

SOLVERS Flom ^The Intprtarce oJ Plag" bg Kat]ileen M&udy, pubIIsM In the J aruory

FLExnet;.rsletten Well-known psychologlst and researcher Jerorne S. Bruner studted the effects ofplay on the problem-solvlng ablltdes ofchlldren. He and trts colleagues deslgyred anexperlment where 3-to-5-year-olds were glven the task of flshlng a prtze from a box that uras out of reach. Theonlyway theycould do thirswas to extend two sdcks by ustng a clamp, thus making a pole with wtrlch to reach the prize. The childrenweredtvtded tnto flrrc groups. The flrct group was "taught" by an adult, who demonstrated howto clamp sdcks together. The second groupwas drllled tn the sldll of fastentng a clamp on a sflck. Ttre thlrd group rvatched the experlmentercarqrout the endre task ofmaldng the pole and then flshtng out the prlze. The fourth group rec.eived no tralrdngat all, butwas slmply given tlre opporhmtty to playwlth thematerlals. The fifth groupwas thecontnol group and recetved no priororposure to the materlals. The results of thts erpertmentare qulte impresslrze. The childrenwho only played wtth the materlals wer€ able to sohrc the problem as \vell as the ones urho uratched the complete soludon dernonstrated, and tudce as succcssful as the ones who urere "tauglrt' the

PARENT LEARNING TOO HanUtDilIn

(PN ruttes:

Yesterday we were read lng about the solar system. We learned that early man dtsco\rer€d the planets by stud5rlng the slles and nottctqgthatsome stars moved in reLadon to others stars and others dtdn t.

That got me thinldng that people were a lot srnarter back then than most of us are now. I mean they rrere a lot better at figurtng thlngs out because they had to be. They couldn't sit and read books about the planets. And that's the klnd of smart I uould like my children to be, rather than the "school" ktnd of srnart that l\rc alurays been. That's the lidnd of"smart".fdllke to

become, too - I hanen't glven up on myself. It sounds lidnd of ridlculous, but I uras proud of myself this Christmas because I completed severalprojectswtrlch Iwasnt sure I could do. I've always constdered myself useless wlth my hands. Buttbisyearl was determined thatl rvould rnake a nice ptnata for my son Mtchael's birthday and awreath forourdoor, and I dtd. Also, I taught myself to play solo handbells and volunteered to play a solo and a duet with ourchurch handbell choir. I am bruslring up on my ptano sldlls, too, so as you can seewear€ all learnlngalot here. GROWING WTI}IOUT SCHOOUNG #56


JOHN HOLT'S BOOK AND MUSIC STORE

E\IERYONE CAI{ PI.AY: Music Books and Records CONCISE O)GORD DICTIONARY OF MUSIC Eclited by Michael Kennedy. ($12.95) ?his book uns odglnrrfu rcudeutedinGWS *33 fo JohnHolL We thb*, lilce ang nng usrjnfuk- lt desentes aJresh lo.k ewry Jew yars. When I was slr I was tn a chamber orchestra made up of muctr older students. I dld not yet lmow many muslcal words or symbols. My orchestra mudc was full of thern thougfr, and erren worse, the conductor would tease me about what they meant because I was ltttle. Wtrat I needed was a dlcflonary of muslc theory and the music language, and the asslstant conductor suggested The Conclse Odord Dlctlonary ofMuslc as the one that "everybod5/" uses. Once we got thls book mom unote the En$istr translaff ons of the musical words ln my music. Now, when the conductor asked me wtrat I was supposed to do ln a measure wlth nothtng ln tt but a lop$ded dtvtston stgn, I told hlm, "Repeat the measure before." The ardde "repeat" tn the Dlcflonary told

werythlrg anybody would ever want to know about rep,eats and repeat slgns, and tn a way that would tnterest a grown-up like Mom and be understood by a lidd ltke me. By the trme I was serrcn, I could dectpher almost arry plece that I vas playng. Slnce my dramber orclrestra days I have used thts book for many purposes. I can flnd all ldnds of music lnformaflon for vrrltlng program notes, answertng a quesdon, orJust dolng some muslcal researctr. The Conclec O:ford Dlctlonary of Muslc ts a dtcttonary that translates ltalian, German, and Flendr mustcal words, some Engllstr ones wtth a dtfferent muslcal meanlng not found tn a Webster. and somewords that don'tbelongto arryreal language. Ttrere are some vâ&#x201A;Źry good explanatlons .recltal," "accompaniment," about tdeas like "harmony." "classlca.I," etc. Not onlyts this a dicflonary, tt ts also a theory book wtth tables and erplanafl ons on sudr thlngS as rhythm, lntonafl on, and scales. The Odord ls the only "mustc lnformafion

book' I know of that ts a comblnatlon of a dlcflonary, theory book, and mtret-encydopedia. Everythtng ts ln lt: maJor composers wtth long btograplrtes and complete lists of works, mlnor composers, performers, conductors, directors, teachers. crlflcs. dancers, lrrstrument makers, publishers, orchestras, opera and ballet companies, concert halls, opera theaters, competltlons, operas, h5rmns, famous pleces, instruments, t5pes of music from all around theworld, jaz.,rock, and types of cliassical dance. ItsT24pages are thorouglr and complete. You don't have to be as tnvolved wlth music as I am to want tt. It ts fu nJust to sit down and browse througlt tt and read dlfferent artides on dlfferent things. My fourfavorttes are "Llgatures," "Notadon and Nomenclature," "Graphic Scores," and "Computers in Music." There are even some arddes on things only sort of related to mu $c - for tnstance, "Gramophone" lsverytnterestfng. All mustc lovers - ctrildren, adults, professlonals, amateurs, concert-goers - will want this book. It ts ltke an educattonal gutde-book to the foretgn counby of mustc, complete wlth its language, tristory, culture, famous people, and lots of diverse tnformaflon: anyone who wants to feel at home tn that "forelgn counbry" should own thts book. - Rachel Barton

CIIIIDREN REICORD ($ 12.98) andBOOK[Vol. r &2, $8.95), byBela Bartok.

T1OR

Flrst rcdeuted in GWS #33.

As I'm v/rltfng, Im

rtglt nowllstening to this

wonderfrrl plano music on our record player. Such good listentng rt ls! I think anyone would love these pleces wen tf they had no intentlon of learning to play the pteces themselves, or even lftheylioe$t nothtng about playtng piano. But to think that havlng these books tn addttion to the records has let me, a "mere smear" self-taug;ht fledgeltngpianist, beglnplaylng some REALBartok - well, lt's especially excltlreg, and I hope more of you by them (Contlnued on next pa.ge, Column l)


John

729 Boylston Street

lfolt'r

Boston. MAO2I 16

BootandMurlc Storc

The trouble wlth most teachers of mu$c or anything else, ls that they have in the back of their minds an ldea more or less like this: "karning ls and can only be the result of

teachlng. Anyftlng trnportant my students leam, they learn because I teactr it to thern." ... It is not enouglh for them to be helpful and useful to thetr students; theyneed to feel that thetr students could not get along without them. -John Holt, NEVERTOO LATE ($4.50)

and erperimenUng more boldly wrth hrs left hand. These pteces irrvite a person to pliay around with ptano posstbilities,Just as Bartok htmselfmust have done in flguring out his accompaniments for these delictous tunes. Hope you all enJoy tttis introduction book to Bartok as much as we have.

-SusanRichman

MII(ROKOSMOS, Vols. I and 2 . Piano studies by Bela Bartok Book ($+.zS eachl. New

ffi

soon. These books have gtven our family a good broadeningbeyond the Suzuld Ptano BookJess (9) and I have learned wlth. Althougfr I love the Elaroque and classical pieces by Mozart and Bach in the Suzuld reptoire, these more modem pieces are a refreshtr:g, even startltng, drange ofpace. Ttre pleces have lots ofltveltness - drr.m rhythms, changlrg variaUons on chordtng for the left hand wtth each repeat of the melody, playful answertng back and forth between the hands, brtsk staccatos, great crashes of fords$mo aglrtnst whispers of pianisslmo. And there are hauntlng melodies in mtnor keys, a favortte wlth me (maybe I llke thern thebestbecause theyaremore accessible to me, betng slower). There is room ln these books for growing there are somepteces easy enouglr fornotvery advanced stgfrt (I'm parscularly NOT advanced tr: stgfrt reading!), and others that I'm sure I won t get to for several more years (O.K., maybe a good dozen years. . .) So these books have longevlty - you're not buyinga "begtnners only''book thatyou'll tire of ratherqulcldy. Bartok acfuallywent around to the peasants tn his nadve Hungprry and neigltboring Slovalda and recorded thetrfolktunes on an early Edisonwax cyltnder recordtngmadrtr:e. (Apparently some of the country folk were afratd of tlris strange madrtne, feartng it mtgfrt steal thelrvolces completely!) The songsfrom these collectrnghlpsmake up these two collecUons forpiano. Bartok's flrst love offolk muslc came wtren he was veryyoung - story has it that by age four he could play about forty folk songs on the ptano - with one ffnger of course - and hts first ptano teacherwas his mother, at home. When I llrst bougtrt these books I dldn't get the records also, and I wam you from my experience that I was a blt ovenvhelmed and lost, as many of the pleces look harder than they are. Once I had the records, I could eastly follow along lr: the book while llstenrng, and could begtn droostng to work on the ones that sounded easter ormost enflctng.Another advantage oflrstenlng to the records ls that they always tr:sptre Jesse s lmprwlsin$ at the piano - he soon begtns comtng out wtth some very 'BartokItke'sounds, bqglns ptddng out snatches ofmelody,

I never bothered to pursue Bartok ln my many years of tnformal piano study, so I larew nothing about his work when I decided to revlew these books, ufttdr John added to our catalog but narer got around to revtewing. Volume One sold respectably well wtthout any review at all, even though it was further handicapped by an lnaccurate description in earller catalogs. I was curtous why tt was so popular. Mlkrokosmos opens wlth a brlef Prefiace by Bartok. He outlines the purpose and sequence of his work, descrlblng the first fourvolumes as:

... givingmaterlal to

begtnners - young or old - wltich

should ernbrace, as faras

posstble, all problerns met with during the ffrst steps. The flrst, second and thtrd books are designed for the flrst or first and

secondyear.

Thesethreebooks dtffer from a "Pliano Method" tn the tradifl onal sense by the absence ofany techrrical and theorettcal descrtption and instruction.

Every teadrer larowswhatis

requtred tn thisrespect and ts able to gtue the earltest tnstrucfl on wtthout reference to

abookormethod. Bartok addresses the ptano teacher rather than the puptl tn his keface; thls tndmtdated me at first, but after sramintng the flrst volume I loeew I could read mywaythroug! themuslc and dectded to bemy own teacher and student. Whtle he grves out a lot of lnstrucdons in his .he;fuce, telllng us how he organlz€d hls book and howto use lt (sudr as starting wtth the exercises ln the appendtxbefore movtng onto the pieces), Bartok s attttude ts actually pretty easygolng. He advises teachers to "alter [the] orderin accordance wlth the ability of the puptl;" and "metronome marks, espectally tn the flrst, second and thrrd books, should be constdered as appro:dmatelndlcadons only." It ts clearthat Bartok ts out to nurture muslcianshtpwlth these flrst fourbooks; he demandsit latertnhislast two: (Contlnued on next Page, Column l)


John Holt'e

729 Bovlston Street

Boston, IVIA02l16

Book and Muelc Stolc

tndependently as long as they can

"in the fifth and stxth books the time iredicatons must be adhered to." We areJust now adding the secondvolume of this series to our catalog and

Oontr.rt Motion

Mouv6m6nt@nt!rir. GoSGobd.gunS

peck thelr way around the piano keys and understand a fewmusic bastcs, such as note values, and a

rudlmentary Sasp of srgfrtreadtng. flngerrng and score will add more Mlkrokosmoe as marlongs. Ifyou don'thave these youwantthem. under your belt you wtll probably The ffrst thhg to sblkeme need experlerrced assistance to get when I opened thesebooksts ttrough most of Mikrokogmos I their multt-lxrgual text. 2 (or start with Mrs. Stewart's & Everythinglsvnittentn Four Unilon Mclodid Pl,ano Leeeons, $ f 2.OO). hi En$ish, French and German. Quatrc mdlodi6! I I'unitlon Vi6r Molodion trU'unilono to ffnditrg thepieces addidon Striking similarities and lncreastn$y challengxeg, I also linguisflc trivia can be found the music gets more garnered from theseword enchanttng as you progress. groupings. For instance, tn Volume One, Elartok Startlng "Imltatlon 23 is exercise called uses Hungarlan folk melodles, and beversion:" the FYendr ts badiflonal songforms suchas the remarkably similiar, Canonand Chorale, compound Ume stgpafures, and "Imitation et Inversion:" the German, as is often the modal compositlons to presenthls techntcal case, remarkably differerrt; "Nachahmung und problems. Umkehrung. " I noticed only a very few pieces where The best reason to get these two books is because the musical title isldentlcal in ail three languages, are such a conclse, non-verbal presentadon of they such as Pastorale. the essenflal elements ofptano playlng. By the end Besides these lianguages, this book immerses you ofVolumeTWo (a total of slxty-stxpieces)you are in the language of music. The Preface, titles, and half playtng much longer and complex pieces than you a page ofnotes Ir thebadrare all the text in the 32 thouglrtyou could (Bartokrecommends one to two oversize pages. Bartok uses dny staves ofmusic years tolearn the ftrst threevolumes). VolumeTlvo above certainpteces to describe a technicalproblem contatns two ptano duets and a ptece wrltten for that occurs in it or in several consecuflve pieces; the plano volce; the goal for the latter ls to have the and appendix is all music. As you can see from the plantst stng and play simultaneously tn order to get illustration below, each piece has its technical used reading to three staves at once. Wonderful purposevery clearly stated by the title. Thesebooks muslcwith straig;ht-forward goals and directions for quiddy immerse the beglr:ner lnto the world of anyonewillingto put the time ln. music. A beginner can benellt from usireg these books -PatrickFarenga

a

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Boston. MA02l 16

KOITKONTEN'S

SECOND AND FOURTH

S]ruPHONIES

performed by the Ftnnish Radio Orchestra under Okko I(amu ($ I I.98). Thls andtteJoVowing record were ra)Ewed bg Jotn Holt

about music from John, ln large part through the records that he gave us, which exposed us to a lot ofwonderful music thatone doesn't often hear. This I(okkonen record, wtrtch I had not heard before, cpntlnues the prooess, even thouglrJohn

i,s

no longer

physically present -

inGWS#43. John Holtwrcte in his rerriew of the Joonas Kokkonen Second and

Fourth symphonies, "Adding this recording to our list is a bit of a gamble, or at least an lnnovaflon, slnce ithas nothingto dowith

children orlearntngmusic. I am adding it simply because I thtnk the fourth symphonyls one of the most original and beautlful qrmphonies written ire tlrts or lndeed any cenhrry..." One of the great things about John Holt's lifewas how. unlike many muslc lovers, he spent large amounts of energy on muslc notwrittenby Germans or Austrian composers. Some of the twentieth cenhrry or turnof-the-century oomposeni whom John strongly admired lnclude theyoung French composer, JehanAlatn Carl Nielsen: the Swlss. Frank Martin and Joonas Kokkonen, who ls a Finn. The two symphonies on this recording are very powerful works, strilongly orchestrated, very melodic and clearlywritten so thatone cantell where the music i,s goingand hearhow musical ffgures come ln, get developed at length and then succeed to new ldeas.The Fourth symphony, wtrich was John's liavortte, opens with a moderato movement. then there ls a

very playful fast movementwhere the percussion are very prominent, whdch toward theendworks up to an immense melodlc climax (the clima:r of the piece actually), and then comes a very beautlfirl, serious slow movement to end the piece. The Second seems to me to have more conversationamong thelnsbmments than does the fourth. There ts a lot of use of solo instmments: the texture ts disJointed, but one can hear the same ideas corning in over and over throughout the piece, wlrtch is fasctnating;. The

comlxx€r s€ems to hlnt that lmpressions of nature could have furfluenced trlmas hewrote, and that would do a lotto explaln the character of the piece, wtrich goes on pleasantly and sometimes qtrlte beautifully for some tlme and then slmplystops. I amvery

thanldrl forwhat I

and the rest of my family leamed

Ishmaelwallace

SONGBOOKS BESTI-VED

SONGS

OFTHT

AMERIC,ANPBOPLE, Denis Agav. edttor. Nearfu2OO liamous

Uilias, spirituals, folk and show

tunes, with ptano accompaniment and guitar chorrds. Awonderfi.rl collection. Hardcover. $f7.95

RESPIGHI/MAHI,ER IBYZET, performed by the

Greater Bo stonYou th Symphony Orchestra, underEUt Oue (two record set, $15 + postage). Ttris

i,s

areallygood record

whichJohn Holt added to the catalog because it showed lrim the huge

potential ficr arflsflc development in children. I must add that, not only do the children play the muslcwell, but the music is reall5l worthwhtle on lts own.

The Resplght Plncs of Rome ts an extremely evocatfue plece. It ts in four movements: The PineTl.ees of the Villa Borghese; PlneTtees Near a Catacomb: The Pture Tfees of the Janiculum: and The Ptne Trees of the Appian Way. In each of these the muslcal texture is masterfully arranged so thatsome sounds appear in the foreground, near the listener, and others tn the distance, and sometimes the two c.onllicl as f tlre sunoundlngs you are hstenlng tn wer€ tanslattng themselves tnto sound. This feeliregof spacegtves the ptec.e a very atmospherlc character. There are several obvious programmadc references tn the muslc. which malce verygd sensewlttrin the plece,

without that betng detrtmental to their shock value. (I would explatn further,

butlwant

to keep the best

partasurprisel) Georges Blzef s opera, Carmen, set ln Sevtlle, Spatn and endswith the hero, Don Jose, mundertng his beloved. Carmen. as she goes to watch i,s

man The orchestral suite. wtrtch Blzet arranged a bullffght wtth another

from the opera, ts anothertrlgltly colorfi-rlworh wlth asuggestion of traditional Spantsh music. There are stxpleces ln the sulte: Pnelude, Aragonalse, Intermezzo. Sequtdille, ks Dragon d'Alacala" and Les Toreadors. Some espectally beautlfi-rl passages which deserve menUon are: tlre flute and clarlnet solos lre the !4!9ggqg4q, to the acrompanlment of the harp, where the atrnosphere ts so tntlmate that one can achrally hear the flautlst breathe: the solo passage forbassoon

TIIE SINGING BEE, Jane [IaTt, editor. 125 of the best-known ctrildren's songs: lullabtes, ffnger plays, circle games, nursery rh5rmes, etc. Easy piano & guitar arrangements. Colorful art on every pagle. Hardcpver. $16.50 and snare drum inl4gPragon d'Alacala, and lateron ln the same piece the duetforbassoon and oboe; and the middle sectton of Les Toreadors, where thetune thatmany ofyou mlght know to tlrewords, 'Toreadoro, don't sptt on t}te floor-o," ls developed very beautlfirlly tn the shings. accompanted by repeated chords in the brass. The Matrler Flrst Symphony ls one of the great symphonies. The ffrst movement ls amadng tn how tlrc most simple musical figune imaginable, two notes descendlng the intewal ofa fourth, stated at tlre very begtrmtng agatnst a long-sustatned A" proves to be the germ fiom wtrtch the enttrre movement gyours. This motfue comes backagatntn the lastmovemenl as does at least one other important tdea from the flrst movement. Mahler uses the romantc lnshrrmentsof the horns and the harp to great effect, espectally tn ttre ffrst movementThe second movement, Kraeffi g betilegt ts a waltz, ffrstfast, thenslow, and then a recapitulatton of the first sectton. A high point ls the thtrd movement, Felerlich und gemessen. ohne zu schleppen, wtrich ts a parody of the popular rcund,'Frere Jacques," played

asafuneralmarch. My sister Vlta has played in serrelal youth orchestras (she recently uras in an Arca All-State Orchestra

which played the Carmen Suite) and so I know somethtngof hour dllffctrltlt ts to get everyone to play the

rfght

notes atthe riglrt time and tn hrne. The GBYSO pull these dlllcult pleces olf tn

an absolutely professtonal rnanner. -

Ishma€lWallace

eliflng, Layout, and Destgn: PatrtckFarenga


t9

DISCUSSION: THE EFFECT OF REWARDS WeVe always be-en conccrned about the effects of reurardtng chlldren for thelrbehavtor - bellevlng that ln many tnstances it may do more harm than good - and we are-pleased to see that resear,chers are now paylng attentlon to"thls subJect -as well. What follows is a dlscusslon betu,een two of thesc researchers, wtth our comments inil th-ose of one of our read-ers mlxed in. The elfect of rewards is a complex subJect, and this dtscusslon ls only meant to be a begfnning. we welcome your response. ISSJ

Ifirst

wlth kth Henw s sq, of P sgclalqg at e, oSa kta tu ry sqr (PA)

spoloe

Assistant Projes

Welle sle g bl@ tdd, ne he' d net

vr

ha

ot a

o{ercne ard

ler unrk enters qt tltds cmcern TlvJdlou@ Is a hianscdpt oJ sonle

larred

that

oJherconnents:

We all look at renrands as posltlrrc. I

know

that before golng to graduate school I uras an

elementaqr school teacher for three years, and I bufltall sorts ofrcward systems tnto rry school day - some subtlg some not so subtle thinldng that thatwas really gotng to modvate my studentsand lmprorrc thetr performance. Iwas fortunate, I was teactrtng ln a prfuate, lndeperrdent classroomwhere no onewas telllngme hourto setup my gla ss1a91n, no one

harded me

a

currlculum, lt

really was mtne to do wtth what I saw IIt - but I felt a real frustraflon because, ln talHng to colleagues, I dldn't feel that anyorre really had

ahandle on howbest to sctupan envlronmentfor ctrlldrcn so tlrat thevwtlb€

modrrated and cr€atlrrc - oratleasts6 thaturc can optlmlze thelr chanccs ofbe{ng creaflve. So thats reallywhat got rrE back tnto graduate school, lnto soctal and

dwelopmental psycbologr. In my research, \r,e go tnto schools, get to know the chtldren so thev're comfortable wtth us, then randomly isstgn children to one of two groups. An errpertrnental group wtll have some sort of rcnard assoctated wtth tt so chlldren wlll corne lnto a r@m and we'll orplaln etther one or ar|adety of creatlrrc tasks thatwe'd llke them to do, arrC urc'll girrc them a reipard for thelr performance. We sav. "lfyou do these thtngs for rne, I wtll let you,. l" Then they setaboutdolng the tasks. The control glroup corrrs ln and does the same tasks, and also recetrres the reurard; the only diflerence ts, tts not labeled as a renrard. TheyJustexpedence tlre reqrard as one of the marry rasks tbat theJ/re accomplf"hf.tg durlng the elqrertrrEnt" Later, urc look at both the creatM$r of performanc.e, and tbe modrradon, f,or both groups. We hanrc varlous ways ofat least attempflng to taF klds' modrradonal orlentatlon - we're not ahrravs succcssfi:I, lt's hard enough to do wtth aedts, we re not always sure wtry we llke thlngs or why we do thtngs. WeJudge t}r creadvtg by asldng "elqrerts" ln urhatever fleld we're looldng at - tf the ldds barrc made collages, our er(perts are artlsts - to rate thosc products. As opposed to aknost ar5l otlrcr researchers

thatl knowaboul

we

feelthattt's

lnapproprl,ate to lrnpose our oum deffnlflons of creaflvl$r on thosc "er<perts," so we

ask

them to use thelrorrn subJectlrrccrlterlaWe flnd orrcrand svelaeFtrl wlthrrcry many age-groups - from pre-sctroolers to adults ln theworlrplace - tlrat there are slgntllcant dtlferenccs between people who are reurarded for performtng an actMty and people who aren't renrarded. The relparded people tend to be far less crcadve fn thelr performanc= than the non-reuarded group. We beIerrc thatttre reurard urdermlnes the lntrlnslc mottrraflon. Ifyou're tntrlnslcalV rnodrrated to perlicrm a tash you're performtng that taskJust forthe sheer GROMNG WTruIOUT SCHOOLING #56

pleasure of the task ltself, Ifyou're

extrtnslctally moflvated to performa task, you're performtng lt not really because you value tt but because you're looHng ahead to the reward thafs comlng, or the enaluatlon. There s adlrect llnkbeturcen lntrlnstc modvatlon and creaflvtty of performance. Informadonal rewards - reurards that ar,en'tjust set up as, "Ifyou do thts, I'll gtrreyou that," but that really corwey some sort of speclflc lnformaflon aboutyour perfonnarce don't tend to have tlre sarne negaffrc elfect as reqrards forreuards' sake, thougtr- Iftt's lnformational, tf lts genulne, then I ttrink tt's flne - and as longas teachers orparents thlnk

tfs OK

to ghrc

both klnds oftnformatlon -

betngpostdve, and also saylng "I ttrlnkthat part could harrcben a ltttle better,"

If s lmportant to reallze that when I talk about thls research, I'm only talldng about openended to"ks. Ifyour goal, as a teacher or parcnt,ls toget ldds to leam thelr multtpltcatbn tables or mernorlze a llst of spelltng urcrds - that ts, fyou're dealtngwtth arrcry closed task, where creatMty really lsn't ln quesflon, then as far as I'm cpncemed, load on tlre rewards, load on the extrlnslc moflrratlon. In other studles, we looked at the effect of expecHng an evaluadon. People composlng hatku poemswho belfeved that the* p".t"t lr€r€ gotng to be rerd€,u,ed blr e)(Perts, that tn a halfan hourthepoetsnrcre gotngto corne tn and ghrc the students feedback onhowgood the poems are - peopleuorktngunder tf,ose corrdlflonswere farless creatlrrc than people who belteved tlreyurcrewrtdng those tratku poemsjust as a sort ofwarm-up exerclse, and no onewas elrcrgorng to bokat them. I go to

t ."h.o-'-rrf.rencrs to

dissemtnate thts research, and I noton$ tell them about tt but also get thetr feedbacli, trcar anecdotal evtdence that supports or contradlctswhat I'm saytng. I'd say 90 ttmes out of lOO, or even more thanr that, people are lncltned to agr€e. Th.y "Boy, I ne.rier ""y,rrcw thatyou'rrc thought of tt thls uray but presented thts researchl can $veyou a mllllonanecdotes of how thls happensln the claqsroom sltuadon." I don'torpect surcephg changes overntght, but there can be changes ln rrcry subtle ways that don t affect

currlculum or admlnlstratlon - no adrnlntstraflon tells teachers e:ractlv how to rewarrd the kids, although tt's true ti most school systems no teachers wlll be abh to escape the whole gradtng systern Unforhmately, lt's much easler as a

researcher to cpme upwlthurays to litll lntrinslcmotlvadon than tocorne up with ways to fostertt. We'rrc dectded to turn the

comer and take a posttlve approach. We've done one shrdy, and we plan to do more, tn

which we trled to tratn ldds to be more tntrlnstcally moflvated -urcwanted to see lf we could kuroculate thern lfyou wlll, ego lnst those negadrrc efects ofneward. Groups of klds came ln to watch avldeotape of two klds

talktngabout thtngis theyenJoy ln school,

ttmes they'd done somethlngthatwas so inter€stlng that they couldn't wait to go home and share ttwith thetrfamtly. These kids on the tape talked about ltttle tricks thry had for putflng grades lnto perspective. Alter seelng the tape, the kids met at another tlme with a second experimenter, whom they thought was c.onducting a completely dtlferent experiment, and they were puth reurard and no-rervalrd situations. Sowe had liddswho had gone through the "lntrlnslc motlnadon tralntng" and vr/ere belng rewarded, ldds who had gone through it and rrere not being rewarded, and kids who had not gone through the training, in both sltuadons. Whenrve looked at the results, they were exclflng enough to make us go on and look at thts further. The mostwe had hoped foruns that the lidds who had had the tralntng when placcd ln a sltuation of reward, would somehow be able to maintain at least baseltne lerrels ofcreativitv - would not orperience the negaflve effecti that I described earher. Whature sawlnstead was that the lrdds who had gone through the tralntngurcre far nrorle creatve than the others. I don t thlnk thls ts the delinitive shrdy, I tlrtnk tt has to be looked at further, butat least I can saythat that tralntnghad an effect. WedlC somethtngwtth those ldds that, you could say, caused them to relnterpret the rcward system ln a posldve way.

[$:] I oddd tlvse srunerxs

to BetH s:

Thts research ts clear$ tmportant; I hope people ln schools take lt to heart. Whenener research ls cnnducted tn (and the results tnterpreted tn the ontext of) the cliassroom setflng, lt's tmportant to remember that ttre perspecttrre of Grorofrg WItIaut Scholirg may be sltghtly dilTerent. For this rlearpn, tlrerc are a cpuple of polnts that I want to emphaslze, or cast t:r another light. Flrst I would not be as qutck as Beth Henrcsseywas to say thattfs all rlght to

revard ctrlldren for "non-creadve tasks." That tg, n probably ts dtlBcult to work up lntrlnslc moflvadon for memorlzlng mulilpltcadon tabbs or hsts ofspelltreg rvords, fglou'nr dohg tltrlse tlntgs as isolated taslcs. Most homeschoolers have alreadv flgured out thatitdoesn'tmake sense tddo these thtngs tn isoladon tn the ffrst place, arrd the suggesdon that lt's OK to reward them should not undermtne thts bellef. Ifachild is urriting a letter or ffguring out how many cookies to bake foragroup of frbnds, lntrlnsl'c modvadon for spellingor muldpltcadon should take care of ttself. Second, I have to place more emphasis than Beth Hennessry doeson tlre fact that sctrools are basedon systems of rervard and puntshment thegrading systemis the rnost obvlous. It would be wonderfi.rl - and I don't underestlmate the elfects of thts - tf teachers could ellmlnate extrinslc r€wardswherever they have the fr,eedom to do so. But the fact is that ctrildren knorv that at the end ofeach

asslgrurFnt

trs

agrade.

Professor Hennesse5r discusses the preltmtnar5r research which leads her to


20 believe that the effects oftlrc gradtng system can be counteracted or at hast medtated ; that iretrlnsic can trlumph oner extrlnslc

motftraflon. Helplng cldldren who must be ln school copewlth thc gradlng system succ=ssfi:lly ls no small thlng, but we ouglrt to bewary ofthlnldng that tfs allwe can do. Tratntes shrdents to "put grades ln perspec-tive" ls rather ltke tratntng a soldler in battle to avoid gu.nshots. It s helpful, certalnlv more conduclve to health, but tt would bi better not to be ln battle ln the flrst

Students, moreo\rcr,,mghtbe skeptlcal ifsuch suggesdons were oflered by the same tnsfltutton tlrat made use of the gradlng plac.e.

system to begln wtth. The potnt ts, saylng, 'Don'tbe affected bytf'ts rather llke saytng, "Pretend tt isn't there . " Students mtght well respond, ' But tt ts there, and tf s gotng to allect us whetherwe mean ltto ornot." F'inally, tf s important to say agaln here what we say ln so many other places: people are born intrlnslcally moflvated. The quesflon ouglrt rrot to be "How carture tnject ldds wtth lntrtnslc npflvaflon?' but rather 'Tt/hat cpndldons and attlttrdes wtll help them

to retalnlt?"

I tlen *nt bthMH s crrrur:rlnts and mte to AW Kolv\ atilor oJ the d< No

Contest The Case Agalnst Competlflon, rwndg publlsFrd bg Houglltorn M{flh atd dtscr.rssad frr Gl{4S *ii,Jorhls resprte. He

wtde: The surestwayto squelchcreaflvtt5r ts to forwork to be done for relrrard - or, more icurrate$, to cause unuld-be creators to thlnk of themselnee as uorHng tn order to get sorrrcthlng. But the research suPPortsyour caudon that thls unhappy elfect ts notlimited arr:anAe

to creaUvetasks.

Arie I(ruglansld and hts colleagues at Tel Avlv Untverstt5l promlsed some Israeli teenagers a renrard for ParfldPatlng tn an orpertment Thts group notonlydld more poorly in hlglrerlerrclumrd gamesbut also failed to memorlze as well as students who gqt

noreward. Another ocperiment found that flfthand slxth-grade glrls hrtor€d''ounger ctrlldren much less efrectlrrc$ lf they were promtsed a reward for teachtng well. The studv, bvJames Garbarltn, showed that the tutofu niro were umrldng for the reward took longer to communlcate tdeas, got frustrated more easily, and dtd a poorerJob ln the end than thosewhowere not rewarded. Does ttmatterrPtratls used as the reward?Apparentl5l not" Vartous shrdles have used money, achanct to playwlthacamera (forvoun{ chlldren), atour ofa college psychobfo deparknent (for older chtldren), and freemovle dckets. The branch of thts research that most lnterests me - and wtrlch I rerrtew ln my book, No Contest - ts

thatwtrkh lntrestgates

compedflve trlumph as a reward. Desplte our sociity's lnfahraflon wlth wtrrnlng, the data show qutte clearly that competlflon not only lsn t necessary for achtevement but actuall5r lrrterferes wtth lL Brandets Unlverslty psvcholoAbt Teresa Amabtle, wlth whom irdnnessev nasworked, asked some seven- to elerrcn-yeirold gtrls to rrnke "stlly" collages. Some competed for prlzes and some dtdn t. Seven aruits then lndependently r:ated thetr works. It turned out that tlre chtldrenwho were tr5rln€l to wtn produced collages thatwere muchlesscreaflve - less spontaneous, less complex, ard lessvarled - than ttre others.

As wlth other sorts of reurards, compedton leads one to focus on the goal (in this case, wlnnlng) rather than on the pure

deltglrt of malCng collages - or, for that rnatter, the fu n of playtngwlthurcrds or numbers or ldeas. Several other studles, lncludlng one from the Untverstty of Quebec publishedlust last fall, showvery clearly that chtldren become less lnterested tn what they ar€ doingwtren they are trylng to beat others at lL E:rcellence and vtctory are two dllferent thfngs, and lnpracdcctheytend to pullfn oppostte direcdons. -

TherearesomecrlflcsofcomPeflflon

whoconclude from thls thatchlldren ought to competeless ln theclassroomorln the horne. Uy ri:adtngofthe research leads metoa mor€ radtcal prescrtpUon: ctrlldren ought neuerto compete. hery leamtng task can be ac-complished more succ€ssfully and more happllywtren tttsn t turned tnto a contest. Its not that compeddon becomes destnrctlve when we put too much emphasls on wlrrnir4l. The problem ts lrrlererrtto awtn/lose struchrr€ - to anarr:angement, thatts, lrt whlchone personcan succeed onlJrlf someone else fatls. Any compefltton ls too much csmpeflUon. -The most successfirl arrangement for most kinds of leamlng ts cooperadon: bringing children together and struchrrtng the tasli so that one can suctd only tf the otlrers succeed too . Ttrls creates a built-tn incrntrrc for helping. Research shows that chlldren not only learn better thts way but eniov the sublect matter more and hke each otfi"-. -o... $mefl.mes chlldren wlll do well when ttrgl work alone. But ln no case ls lt destr:ableto nank them agalnst one anotlreror to encourage them to n ork agalnst one

anotlrcr. f),otnE away wlth compeddrrc reurards is both owcholoeicalv heatthlerand rnore produclirrc, whch rireans there is no trade-off betweenwell-betn{ and performane. The real altemauve to betnE Numlber One ls not being NumberTWo but alSandontng such ranldngaltogether. tSS.l O1efnal anrunerX - mang tasks are already s tnrctu rd, in s rch a ua4 tllr:t u:e tnw c;clcioqattott ts naessaru,' ffs not as f-Puffiry to deate such slhlrirfonE arffialg, onapuppet slir,w, buMbu aEee lanse,

u:ritilo,ind ilhtstattw

of theie

thtu s hot:e

tfre

H< tqetler - all ned fq-awratfi:e

a

dfion sndnollg butlt bt Bu( u:e dont put a puppet slplw so

ffiate"

that up

cant

"

orl.

Ieotn to

: ratlen u:e do tl bg'anse uE tldnk It unrid bj.tnto puton apuptrnt slaw, atd in

the olwse

ryrate.

oJ

tJe rcttuity, up

larn

to

IIIGHLIGHTS OF BACK ISSIJES Most of the articles listed are by John Holt. GWS il - On social change... Access to the world... Jud Jemme's urrschooled ldds. . . On counting. , , Jim Herrrdon... Sx hours a day... Doplr4lschoolchildren... Fcclrrrgl helplcss... A stud;dqg trlck

GYS *2 - Teachlqga'braln-damaged" tccn... RcadlngGuidcs... Schools & poorldds... Rcading;: Chlcago Style... JudyMcCahlll: Ltfc athome.. Cheap books... Recyclhqg toys... Lcgal r€search... More Jud

Jemmc... MlxedAlltes

i3 - Irorry of sldppr4; school... holdng up lcgal cascs... Allowances... Mlxiqgup rlg;ht and left... Tcadrlngmachkrc... G)?sy muslclans... Nancy Emt... Capable Chll&cn... Ustng the stovc... Let's Read cWg

GWS i4 - Batungftactrc€... Quesdons to ask *hools... LcarrrlngC€rrtrd Patk's trees... Evaluating

homeschoolcrs.,. Motlvadon... Saying No... Single parcnt,.. Additton... Rub-on letters'.. Calculators... credendal muropoly

GYS#5 - HunflngforSpecial Needshds... Nobody

seesbackurards,.. Readiqgrcadiness... Classbias... Access to DC... The therapeutic state.'. Research on stress... Sklrrnerarrdbehanlorlsm.,. Fami\r on a Boat CWS#E - Taldngchlldrenfrom parents... Schools arrd "experts"... Camplrqg at 2.,, NoncomPetitive 'Monopo$'... Checldr4; account at lO.'. Trarellir4; famlly... Grecrrleaf.,. Facts & sct€nceworehip... Flndirlg trrework.., Rcading... Mulfiplicafon... From concreie to abstract... Too much teacht4g... The real purpoecs ofschool

CYS #7 - Pcrchernlides, Scgslorrs cases... Shame & pain rn schol... Scnslble phonics... Ifyou start a school... Theatkrg small childrcn s€riously... What an l8l5 man hrcw &why... S€lf-taugtrt... Usingcollege texts cWS tA - Portfolio cvaluadons... CApoficiency er<am... Inffnlty... Inner ctity... L€aminga language... Misunderstandtngs.., Non-rcader's suit against SF *hools... Apple plcldng cr€w at I O... Children's sporb... Typing... A case lct... Kenh:clryruling cWS i9 - Chtld artbt/acryhcs... Testlr4;adults' nmits... Famtly on an tsland... Readlng game... Money at 3... Local groups.., Tclllngstrangcrs,.. rv\lhy schools began... Ltstcnlng to adults... Grammar... Worms.., Collqe at home... School or club?... Advice from Xlnmonts.., Math

GTA #lO - Familtes ln NH, RI, Canada... Carl Melscn'sboyhood.,, Books & Guns.,. Hosto( News... Officcworkcrat 12,.. "Good" schoolteadrcrs... Helpiqg learners,.. Lcarntr4;elcctronics... Whyshe left... Deahngwtth schmls.,. Rai*d rclicfmaPs

Wada Rezrc (MA) 0hsau,ted pdqdU the oobts brssfu out lrt t]\Is dlscussfon tuith

tlwitoru sle tdd {rr t}e Marlboro Enterprise's 2 / 3 / 87 afltb n lwre *fiodrtrg : I found that rnv flrsttu/o childrendid some beautlful draivtnAs when thery w€r€

little. I would dtsplav them, pr:atse them. Thgr stopped drawins. Mv thtrd c'hild (age 7) drawb unfiIifs comlns-outbf herears' When she shows me some-thlne I sav "Oh." I acknowledgg tt, I say-I lrkdtt, but I try not to do anvthtng to motlvate lt one way or tlre otherl She'5 retained that slidll, The others

tl2 - "Sound-spclllng"... Myths of homcschootr4... Kendrlcks' lettcr to schools... KY rullng... A Eoubled homeechooler..' Copo h robbers'.. Teachlqg Chemtstry... Explorlrg wort... Problerns wtth standardDed tcsts... Headstart asbootcamp... Holland G'WA

lostitatage 5. Note: We have begun comptltng "Hfgh{ghts ofBacklssues" lnthe mlumn at tlrc rlght to remtnd readers that much lmportant and lnter€stln{ rrratertal ls tn these lssues t}rat we do not olai to reprlnt elsewhere. Unllke other magazines, GWS lssuesdo not go outofdate.

are kept in print. page prices, of this issue. see last For

All back issues of GWS

GROWING WTTTIOUT SCHOOI.ING #56


2l

LOOKING AT CHILDREN'S ART Gateth Maltlews, autlar oJPldlosophy and the Young Child and Dialogues Wtth Children bth atnilab/.e lere), has hntd, hts atterXiort to ctildred s att dt14 br potticlnr.r, to tohot adtlt preptiorts oJ such art sag abut adult dltihtde s tousotd. children ttt g e neraL MattJvw s's crnrs,lde rwtlon oJ chlldreds artb dlstlrlgtdshed. - as toas hJs exa ntlrnllrrt oJ chlJdrert s phllreqFE - bV lts sericusness cnd cunplete lack oJ cordesenslst HIs atfule, "Clrlld Art o.rl.d 'fhe Hae oJ Children h tuIety,' wIlI fu part oJ tle fuk Chlldren, Parents and Polifics, to fu publishd fo C anbtilge Wthars [ty &ess, ard lE has gertrlouslg gfisen us permlss{cn to

quoteJromxhere: When our younger daughterwas about fouryears old she painted a pichrre that has become a farni! favorlte. In scarlet on an olfwhite background, it depicts, in a simple, pyramidal form, the heads and shoulders of three human figures. We framed the pichrre manyyears ago and have hung lt, from tlme to time, in abedroomorfamlly room. Durlng;a reccnt house move I came across

thepaintingagainand stopped to admtre lts elegance and bright brashness. Thougfi we

haven'tyet hunglt lnournewhouse, I can certainly tmagtne ffnding a good place for it and thinking that, of tlrevarious opilons open to us, hangfng that parttcular palndng in that parflcular placewould be theverybest

thingwecoulddo. Of course there are personal reasons why my family and I ltke that pardcular patndng. It reminds us ofour daughter, whomwe love very much. It recalls an tnterestlng period in her Me, and in our lives. And by now lt is familtarto us in away thatmakes it relnforce a sense of continuit5l in our lives.

Suppose, though, thata ftend ofours who ls amuseumcur;'atorwere tovlsltand to view the painting. (Lefs call the paindng, which now has no n,une, 'Three F'Igures in Scarlet.') Is it conceivable that a competent art collector might dectde that 'Tfu€e F)gures in Scarlef is a sigyriffcant umrk ofart, one worthy to be exhtblted tn, say, the Boston

MuseumofF]ne Arts? ...Of course the Boston museum rnfght be doing a special collecflon to tllustrate, so to speak, the natural history ofpalndng and drawing. The curator rrdghtwant'Three Figures tn Scarlef'as a flneexample ofsome recognizable s$de or sfa€F of derrelopment in

children's paintlng... [But] ts it concrivable that'Three F-tgures lnScarlet" mtght bea good addiflon to a general collecdon of art? In fact, curators don t go around collectturg art irrespecflve of category. They may find something that unuld make a good addidon to their collecdon of Impressionism, or Flemish Art, orCubism, orJapanese watercolors, orwhat haveyou. But they collectwork in categories. So even ifwe don t imagine our friend, the curator, as mounnng an exhibitionofchtldren s art, we seem to have to think of her as categorizing'Three Figures tn Scarlet' ln some way or other. Is therea rccognlzed category tnwtrich a painting by a four-year-old mtght excel? ,,.The basic reason'Three F'lgures" doesn't belongln anyof the collecdons established by mainllneart museums is that those collecfions are deffned historicallv and geograptrically... One slmple alterauon-ln museum collecdons would open up the posstbtlit5r of acqutrlng'Three F'tgures in GROWING WTTTIOUT SCHOOLING #56

Scarlet." Itumuld be to establlsh, as an a perrnanent collecdon of children's arl.. There odstalready, ofcourae, muserurxr ofchlldhood. Such placcs nourtsh adult nostalg)a, but they also serrrc the more educadonal purposeof helptngus to ttrtnk about the hlstory, soclolog/ and anthropologr ofchildhood. Such a museum rnlght reserve awlng forchtldren's art. But the purpose ofbecludlngchlld artwould be to remlnd us ofthe phenomenon ofctrlldren's dradng and patntln6 to exhlblt somethkg of lts culttrlral and lrtstortcal dtverstty, and also, perhaps, sorrrthlng of lts cross-cultural and

addldon,

historical universality. In asHngwhether an artmuseum, lndeed a good art museum, should hanie a permanent collecdon of ctrlldren's artwe are, hourwer, conslderlnga dLfferent lnterest fromany that would be addressed prlrnartlybyamuseum of chlldhood. We are ashngufietherclrtld art might be approprlately celebnted as art, rather than merely regarded as soctal and cultural arflfact. ...In more than one way, the quesdon I am asldng ls a polltlcal quesdon. In a soclety ofchildren, the childrcn might dectde for themselves whether they wanted to celebrate some of the art produced by members of thetr own "ldnd." Inoursoclety, ho*rerrcr, chlldren do nothave the powerto make sucha declsion. In our soctety tt unuld harrc to be an ad ult dectslo n, a declslon cpncrrnlng flnanclal resources under adult control, whether to collect children's art for a maJor museurn. For us, then, the quesdon ls whetherwe adults consider lt approprtate orurorthwhlle to celebrate the aestheUc senslbtltty and ardstlc achleverrrcnt of arfl sflcally gtfted chlldren. This, ln turn, ratses polldcal quesflons about exploltadon and about wtrlch educafional ldeas we lmplement ln our society. But lt also has to do wtth whether urc as adults can recpgntze arrythhgofprofound worth ln the work of a child, even a\rcry sensltlve and glfted chlld. In the aesthedc erraluaflon of chlldren s art there are certalnly enthuslasts, as urell as detmctors. Aldous Huxlerr must b€ clunted among the rnostenthus6dc ofthe enthuslasts... He wrltes that 'bhen left to themselves, " children "dtsplay astonlshtng artrstic talents"... land hel clalms t]rat 5O96 of children are "llttlegenluses ln the lleld of pictorial art" whereas among adults, he thtnks, the percentage goes down to one ln a

mlllion. The detr:actors are perhaps more easily found. I recently approached the curator of paindng and sculpture ata maJorart museum (not, I should say, theMuseumof FtneArts) with the suggestion that he rrpuntan exhlbiHon on the theme, 'TWenttreth Century Art and Children's Art." I suggested he exhibit some well-chosen chlldren's art both for tts own sake and also for the relaflonshtp tt would bear to the work of Klee, Mro, Dubufret and other 2Oth Century arHsts whose work was lnfluenc.ed by child art, or at least sems to show alfidUes wtth chtldren's art. This curatoragreed than an exhtbldon along such ltnes cruld ha\€ gr€at dldactlc

value, Indeed, he even named museums, other than bls own, that mtght be tnterested ln such a show But he assured me that no children's artwould werbe shown inhls mus€umas long as he was chief curator. He would allow nothing to be exhlbtted there, he sald, that

ar! and no children's art, lnslsted, was ffrst-r:ate art.

was not flrst-rate he

. . .The devaluadon of the goods of ctrtldhood... ts embodted, I thfnk, in thevery strrcture ofour soclal lnsfltutions. Itis adults, after all, and espectally adults in the prlme ofthetrllves, who deterrnlne the rcward-struch.re of our lnstltudons and have the greatest lnfluenc€ ln applylng this stmchrre to thelndtvidualswho get exhlblflons, ltsdngs ln Who's Who, posiilons on lmportant boards, and so forth. As far as art ls concerned, our great museunB embody the assessmentthat the c.elebraflon and appnectatlon of the work of

gr€atartlsts are arnong Lfe's gr€atergods. But the treatrnent ofchldren's art shows that we thtnk of lt as havlng only Amtmrnental and personalwalue. It has personalrralue to parents, teachers and frlends associated wlth the chlld ardst. It has tnstmmental value tnsofar as productng tt further the general development of ttre chlld and, ln rare cases, the further development of someone who will actually become an trnportant ardsl Otherwlse, lt has no value. . ..The best reason one could have, tt may seem, for refuslng to establlsh a permnnent collecflon ofchlklren s artln a maJor museum ls that such artwould be, perforcr, tmmature art, and therefore lnapproprlate for c.ollectbn alongslde the most mature artlsilc achievements of our cMltzaflon. ..lButl suppose lack of maturity fatls to dfsguolfg children's art from betng collected by a maJor museum. What would qual$tt?Thatis... we rreed aposltive reason to select and celebrate the best of children's

art.

Atthts polnttt maybe usefi.rl to compare ctrtld artwlth chtld philosophy. In PUlasqhg ard. the Yourg Clddl matntaln that many young ctdldren naturally ralse quesflons, make comments, and ev€.rr €ngage tn reasonlng that professional ptrilosophers can recogyrlze as ptdlosophtcal. Not only do they do phllosoptty naturally, they do it with a freshness ofperspecttrrc arrd a sensidrdt5r to puzzhmentand conceptual mlsrrratch that ls hard foradults toachlerrc. Theadult must culdrrate tlre nalrrcte that ls requlred for doing phtlosophy nrclt to the chlld such nalvete ls entJrel5r natural. I don'tmean

thatctrlldren, orerrcn some

clrlldren, are betterphilosophers than any adults are. Ofcour:se that lsn t trre. Other thlngs bestdes awllltngness to quesdon accepted beltefs are lmportant to dolng phllosophywell. But there is afreshness, an urgency and a naturalness about chlld phtlosophy that both asks to be celebrated for itselfand that can help usappreci;ate the nature and significanc.e of adult philosophy, or better, of philosophy itself. If one focused exclusi',rc\r on ttre adult pbenornenon, one would have only a truncated cronception of what tt ts that moves people to ask and re-ask those age-old quest*ons. Might there be somethinganalogous in chlld art? Mtght therebe ln the best ctrildren s art somethlng thatboth asks to be celebrated in and for lts€lf and also something that can help us appreciate the nature and slgnificanc€ ofadult art? I ttrink there is. Ifso, then child art needs to be exlrtbited as much as child phtlosoptry needs to be recognized and even

publlshed. Attempts to cencetve childhood and to evaluate child culture have tended to assume


22 either that chlldren are merely proto-people, to be cherished and nurtured principally for their potential, or else tlnt they are models of innocence and tnstgbt to beemulated by

adults. Neitherassumpflon ls satlsfactory. Chlldren are people, fully worttry of both the moral and the tntellechral respect due persons, They should be respected forwhat they are, as well as forwhat ttrey can become. Indeed, we can learn from themand let them enrich our llves, as, much more obvtously, theylearnfrom us and letus enrlchthelr lives. ...So should'Three Flgures ireScarlet," or some otherwork ofart by a four-year-old, be added to the permanent collecdon of the Boston MuseumofFtneArts? I think so. Will it? That ts harder to say... lIfl chlldren's art ls

collected serlously, that derrelopment wlll, no doubt, have interesting and sfnfficant soclal and polifical consequenoes. Forone thlng, our attltude toward ctrildren and towards the value-system that systemadcally devalues

their thought, thelr senslbility, their experlence and the works oftheircreaflon, will also change, Wlth such changes wlll come changes in the rolesweallowto ctrlldren in our society. I hope I have sald enough to suggest that these derrelopments could consuhrte, not only a step towards chlldren's liberadon, but also a slgnlficant step towards adult liberatton a.s rryell.

WORKING IN SPECIAL ED. In 1984 lltd.a HWdaH

(WA who had.

unlclry wlth hn'dbap@ toddlets and. cttldrenjor sernral years, tutote:

berl.

gotutg

Most of the actMdes ln my classroom are up to rrr. I can close my door and do "my thing"wtth the ldds, for the most parL But I amexpected to testtlrem, pre- and post-test and deal wtth the norm of havtng ttrem bussed

into school without parents. I guess my biggest complaint ls, what can I do for a handicapped child two orthree fimes aweek when the parents, tfglvenJust some support orgutdeltnes and havingthechtldren all the time, would probably do great? When I confront the hlgher-ups about thls they seern to feel that cblidren with delays are an excepflon to my beltefs about homeschooltng and the capa.billdes of parents. They potnt out, and righdully so, that a large rnaJorit5r ofour parents are not interested !n, or wen capable ofeducating thelr "regular ed." chldren, let alone their child with extra needs, Mar5r ofthemdo,

tdeed, send thetrctdld to mewtththe instrucflon to "cure" thenr. Alotofmy

colleagues perpetuate thls practtce. So, I go on wtth my programmlng and acflvides and trylng to love themall as best I can There are usuallyoneor hvo parcnts everyyearwhoml canencourage to be bnave and trust the{r outn trstltrcts and lntuitions and to stop seetng professtonals as "gods" but to use them and then go on from there. I truly beltene ttrat a lot of spectal educaflon teachtng time would be better spentwith parents. Fttght now, I'm toylngwlth the tdea of getttng out of spectal ed... but I keep havlng

gulltylbeltngs. Reenilg, un aslced l)rda or slhntion had

cturgd

at alL

{ her t}touglts ffie

rqlid:

conilnue to strugglewithalotof the parents who are lacldng erren baslc I

"parenflng" slidlls and sound common sense, but once everyyear or so I wlll meet a par€nt whowants to contlnueto be the prlmary caretakerofthe ctdld tn splteofthe pulls from my colleaggeswho want to assurrc c-ontrol over the cholce about the ctrlld's educaflon. I feel such a lack of conlldence among these parents of"spectal needs" chtldren wtren they are flrst enterlng lnto the speclal educatlon realm... Occaslonally, howerrcr, a paren! gpen some chancc and acc.eptance, wlll begtn to ask quesdons and say, 'No, that nmn t work for our famll1r." I have trled to encour:age otlrer stalf members not to grumble and feel personalV attacked but to see thts as a healthy stgn. Pnogress ls slow. I feel rlght now that my prtmary succrsses ln lntroduclng tlre lCea of homeschoollng harrc beenwlth other speclal ed. stalfpeople and the regutrared. people tn the buildlng. They see my 6-year-old once a weekwlth me and feel hels'betterthanmost children his age" and "certalnly has a lot of interesdng things to say." Th€y frequently ask quesfions about'bhatwlllyou do next vear?" and "I heard a news storv about -homeschoollng

and I ltstened..l" The teachers

atmy school are seelng homeschooltngas an opflon for "regu.lar folks" and thcy are acc€ptlng tt as a non-threat. Tlrts ls an accompltshmenl Where I also feel I amhavlngan effectts wtthparents ofS-year-oldswho ar€ tn rny class prior to kindergarten because of some subtle or "fuzz5r" concem about thelr derreloprrrnl.. I hatrc managed to corMnce four famtltes thts year that l) the chtld does not need special educadon; 2) they are doing a fineJob of parenflng; and 3) some chdldren derrelop slonrcrorona dlfferent track

than

otherchildren and school may notbe ln the child's best tnterest rtglrt away. I have nothad amaJorcronfrrontadon with the hlgher-ups on thls. Afterwe evaluate the children that are referred and meetwlth the parents, the admlntstradon merely sees a form sa5rlng "No Need" and ourreports, I have been qutet$wriflng tn each report that the parents were advlsed to walt at least one eirtra year before starttng therr child tn school. No one has sald anythtng. Wtth each of these familtes I haveorplatned about homeschoollng and gtrrcn them lnformation

about resources ln ourarea and about reladng and enJoylng thetr chtld. So you see, I am maklng some headway but it is prlmarlly tnlntroduclng homeschooling to my co-workers and to

parents of "not-ready-for-school-pf ' chlldren. The parentswtth "heavy" needs children seem to be dfr4lng to theldea that only a professlonal can help thelr ctrtld . Ttris idea ts perpetuated bytheirdoctors aswell. But I will c.onttnue to butld thetrconlldence and accept thetr ctrolces and ldeas.

less aboutplunlrdngthe garbarzos allln the sameholeand putflng the spllt peas together? If a parent ts really andous to do

somethtng "educaflonal," I'm afratd the temptation ls there to coerce, brlbe, make guilty, nag, projectphorSr enthusi,asm, and generally resort to otherteachertricks to get the proJect ac:comp[shed. You mlglrt actually getyour chtld to do ttrc actMty wlth one of the above. But lf he dasn't have any real enthuslasm for lt, nerrer mlnd how much work ltwas ficryou to get lt togetlrer. Even lf he does it, the arrrount of leamtng that takes place and the amount of resentrnent that butlds up wlll make lt all a negadve expedenc€. The clelrcr actMdes ln most chlldren's proJect books, espectally the ones labeled "educatlonal," areoften there forthe same

reasonthat saltused to be putfnbabyfood; so thatwtrenyou sample lt, ltwtll seemgood to you. Ifyou're cravlng some g;uarantees that you're doturg the right thfngs, and the book assures tlrat some leamtr4lwlll take place, you'll probably be eager to try whatorer they suggesl You don t want a book to tell you that you can easil5r create your ovm learntng proJects tfyour conflderrcc ln yourself ls low. Yet these actMfles ar€ rneanlngless unless

they happen wfthln a context that makes serise, or are flm€dJust dght to crtnctdewtth somethingyou're already tnGrested ln. Don't let those sltck proJect books make you feel

thatyou hanr to getyour chlld to perform them, orworseyet, that there's sometblngl

wrongwith him if he doesn t get excited over the cute proJectsyou dlg up.

tlvn

qrrctes Jrom a nng azAv Your Ch@ren at Hone," lluhir'hllstd. suggestd orl'lntt&'s to N arcg

otffie mlld.' Hou To Te eh

oe o.f toltt;hNarcg "adowrufghtbdda\ 'ha.te' clfldrendo,

calls

'Telephonitts: Comblne readtng and math skills by looldngup the telephone numbers of f:lends and reladrrcs ln the Dtectory and then add up the total of the dtgtts nextto the names." [Nancy comments:l Thls ls one of the

dumbest tdeas I've errer seen ln an artrcle of this type. Good, tlnt ctrtldren leam to use the phone book. But why ln hearrcn's name would theywant to add up the telephorre numbers? Wt5rthts desperaflon to squeeze one more "educadonal" thlng out of everytlrtng the chfld does? Ifthe chtld thought ofaddlng the numbers, thafs orre thlng. In fact, I talked to a c.ouple wlro told me that thelr daughter had gone through a phase of ffnding out people's ages tn a fanilyand addrng themall up. Nobody had suggested thts to her, sheJust shrmbled on the tdea and tt appealed to her. But to "hane the drild" do tlrts as a math exercise? Surely the addtflon shouldbe somethtng wtth some apparent use.

BAD "ACTIVITYII BOOKS

ALL ONE PIECE

Narcg Hent utote last g ar Unschooler's Network #2O:

f fuJollatttrg ts an ercrpt oJ a torlk J oltul. Hdt gatn tn 1 97 6 (bratrsrll}ed by reder brnse Rauch) Irl. whbhle spol<e about hls bok Instead of Educadon ard hls ulslon oJ tle rdeal soL*ty tt whbh'ryle uwd b b$g dDbg {rntercstlurg tlttrys tlntmaltetd' ad. lolrltfdge and ir{ormoJ,tur umid b wtdelgshatd-

h

the

NI

There'sa phrase thatpops up tn nearly Ttre author tells you to "hatrc the ctrild" put beans ln a lar, or narne gome colors, or make a papier mache map, so that some sktll can be leamed. I alwayswonder, whatlf thechtld doesn twant to? Suppose you get that egg carton and those cplorfi.rl beans (an actMty bookfavorlte) and yourclrtld c.ouldn't care errery book of acdvtttes for chtldren.

The world of human ercperlenc€ ln spac€ and time goes back tnto tlre past, extends out lrrto the fuhrre - that's what four dlmenslons GROWING WIIHOUT SCHOOLING #56


23 mearu. It's all one plece. E\rcrythlng tn tt ls connected wlth everythlng else. Ifs anery serlous mlstake to thtnk that the dMslons whlch we harrc made ln human er<perlence, certalnly tn our schools, dMdlng them lnto subJects or oourses or o-called academlc dtsctpllnes - tts a rer1r gr€at mtstake to thlnk that these correspord to anythlrg tn the real world. Thry rnay be useful for certatn ldnds of purposes. [Butwe harc to] understand t]rat thts ls arrcry artlflctal dMslon, and lf carrted onrrcry farltbeglns to be acttvely harmfui. There are no dotted llnes out there rvtrtch separate physlcs fromchemtstry, or hlstory Aom geography, or economlcs frrom govemrrrn! or ptrilosoptry from rellgbrl or thls ftom that They don't edst" You cannot potnt to ptrystcs. If I say to you, 'Show me chemlstry," or'lVhere ls btolog//" you can't answer. These are all actMtles. They are all dilferent ways oflooldng a! thfnldng about asHng about, certaln aspects of the wholeness and lnterconnectedrrcss of human orperlerrc.e. Physlcs happens to be the asldng ofquestlons about certatn aspccts ofwbat urc call tnanlrnate rnatter, thouglryou pursue ltfar enoughand pretty soonJDu gettnto thatarea where you're not qulte surewhaf s lnanlmate and what's ardrnate , so you get to talldng about phystcal blologr. And chemlstry ls the acflvtt5r of asldng quesflons about crrtaln other aspects of tnantnate rntter. And hlstory ts the actMty of asldng certatn ldnds of quesflons aboutwhat happ€ned ln the past and geologr ts also asldng quesflons about what happened ln the pa.st but for dfferent ldrds of tblngs. But those arc actMdes, tlrese are tbfnge that peopb do. There's not a lump out there called ptysbs uftfch all of us can walk auray fr,om or omc up to and look aL Phystcs ts somethlngthatpeopb do. [SS:] AII tle norc ra.*n b thlnk oJ Iean&g phg sks (q arytldrg else) os lmntry afutt u*nt pltg sHsts do and u:|ry tley tltlt* tt s Inptont, rjtn to do lL

DECEPTTVE CREDENTIALS Our'adenllol

wlo

pojtJln

sa;lelty' lurts etsen tlose It, nlorl&tg us rot wllke tlc

cltlzers h tle' Dnprd s l,leu: dotle s' JaIrv tale; un cantot w tle trl.tth $ qtr sh;rlqr,fs Mtbd tle credsttfals tlq ate umtfng.

F}rorn anlntqubu wllh MIT poJesso.loseph Welzcnhwl puillshd tr tlc Utcrotg

nryozbe OakSquare ard used rse whh Perrn ssbru

tspalctrg dbat aPhD sh dq,t-l ...'Ihts

young man ln hls oral enms revealed, bastcally, the lack of errcn a mlntmal

comrnandof the Englfshlanguage. Ard tthas to be satd that ttr Engllsh language ls the only language he knows; heurasn t a forelgp studenL lrrc worrdered about that a bL I talked to htm a lot aftercrards. Hts father ls an execudrrc ln a computer crmpar5r. Hls mother ls also professtonall5r acttrrc (1n some way). Hewent to the best publlc sctrools. From there hervent to [collegel, wtrere he studled ptystcs. fibe college heurcnt to] has a good reputaflon, parttcularly ln the ptryshs deparhnent So hemustharrc presented mme credentlals to be abb to get lrr From there he came to MIT. And, agah, lf s not eas5r to become a graduate student ln computer sclencr atMIT. He must have presented rrcry lmpresstrrc credenflds, letters of recommendatlon. He must have had htgh

gradesand allthat. GROWINC WTTI{OUT SCHOOLING #56

What happerred? I can only guess, but I thtnkwhat happened ls that ln ttle early grades, the teachers knqr that he, as u,ell as many other ldds ln the class, were upper-class klds, ldds of professlonal parents. And lthe teachersl had very conslderable orpectatlons. It'sbeen shownln many studtes that teachers, espedally ofyoung chlldr€n, see wtrat thry orpectto see ln chtldr€rl So ollthcy go to the next grade, and the thlng contlnues. And, wtren ther€'s doubt, the hlghergade ls alrrays gtven. So thts whole thlng becrmes self-Htng. I thlnk that, bastcally, tbe recommendadons, say, that hls [teachersl wrote for htm uiere descrlpdons of the student thry trnagtned hlm to be, or errcn Mshed trtmtobe, and orpect€d hlmtob€tn vlervof trts herltage, so to speak. Now, lefs take tt to the end ofthe ctratn. I-ef s take lt to thls pardcularexamlnadon. Good quesdonto ask Well, lfhedtdso terrlblymfserably - and he dldvery, very poorly on hls elcamtnatlon; hc stmp! couldn t erglatn tn platn language why urood floats on water - yet he was a physlcs maJor. What do you suppose happened tn thls examtnadon? Dtd he fatl? No, not atall- He passed. I must say orrcr rrry objecttons. But the cnmmlttee tn general bastcally took the atUtude, "He's gotten thts far, he can't be totally dumb or not know an3rthlng orwtnterrcr to get thfs far and besldes, the stulf that he's done that doesn't deperd on urrlttng appean to be god," and so on, and there you are. If s rrcry posstble that thlsyoung man wtll get a PhD from MITtwo or three years from now. And when he prorrcs htmself to be tnardculate at some laboratorv orwhaterrcr, people wtll say, "Ulell, he's one-of thosefunny scienflsts. But he must bevery good: after all, has a PhD from MIT."

tr

thlnk that's how lt nrorks on the upper end of the scale. And ltworks, I thtnk, pretty I

much the samewayon the lonrerend of tlre scale. We tmagtne a teacherwtth forty ldds tn thc class. Here cornes someonewhose handDrlung lsn't very good. Hls r€spons€s to test questtrons may be rcry hard to read, Just from the potntofvtenrof legtblltty. Well, the teacherwtll see what thc reacherexpects to see: 'X:lds llke thls don't get arrywhere; lidds Itke ttrls don t harrc smart parents." So tf ttrere's arydoubt, tlreygfrrc hfmtlre lesser mark Then that becomes a self-firnlhg prophecy. By the ttme a ktd ltke that gets to the nlnth grade, say, he may be dlscour:aged from golng on because 'TIe hasn't got tL" So I thtnk tt nnrks the same way. ..,It lsn'tJust that the lourest pereentile or declle of the barrel happens to fall by the way and become rotten orsomethlngof that sort. No, the porrcrty of our educatlonal system elfects e,verybody.

DONIT MAKE IT COMPIJLSORY llom an atTlcle In tle MDbr, 1 I 7 5 Frtends Journal caild Whg K@p Clrmpufsorv *haltugT fo Sprer Core,

n:ho seruad as

eretittp dbetor oJ tle

Pltladfuttto. huvhoJ tle Anertun ChlI

Llbrtb

s U nbnJor motrV W ar s :

The statedJustlflcatron for forctng clrlldren to school ls that lt ls for thetr own good; they rreed educadon ln preparadon for Me: errcrJrcne needs at least the bastcs like the three R s, and many need a lot more than the three R s tftheyare to have awell-pald or tnter€stlngjob. Ttris argument ls based on the unexamlned and mlstaken assumpflon that

schooltng ts the same as educaflon, and that ctrlldren must be forced to accept tt or they \yon t learn. Amoment'sconslderadon of the pherromenon oftalldngwill erpose the fallacy. Talkfng ls the most dtlffcult basic slidll to learn (as thosewho have struggled wtth foretgn languages know), butchlldren learn lt wlthout compulsion and without belng "taught" because they uont to and knou

tleg nd" to. Requtrlng crompulsory speech lessons forlnfantswould probably result in a genenadonofmutes. Yet soctety locks up chlldren for flrrc or more hours daily bying to compel them to leam the three R s, thus lnsurlng reslstance and defeat. Indeed, as persons experlenced in the helpkrg professlons know, you can't sucressfi rlly force people to change themselves for thetr own good. No reputable psychlatrlst tneats an unwllllng patient, not

onl5r because lt ts ettrlcally wrong to do so, but because such treatrnent ts bound to fail. Fereepttrrc observers of the "corrections" systemare begtnntng to reallze that "rchabllltadon" of corrvlcts ls tnherentlv tmposstble; the human sptrlt (thank c;d) reslsts "cure" or "reform" wtren the subJect

feels

carced by conffnerrrnt or by a systern of

r€wards orpunlshments.The same ls true of educatlon. Beharrtor and conforrntty may be coereed, but not learntng.

CHANGING PEOPLE'S MINDS Isesp.tst g rrdrodQ ubuts unrthtle

efort? Hou llleelg !s such tallc or writing to

prdure arq

rcaI

elfd?

In

h,bVlad,btnHdtsald:

a 1982 tteruiew

...Thls ts part of the largerquesdon, how one human belng change the thinking of another. Our abtltty to do that ls very limited. What I do, pracdcally spealdng, ts I talk, I give lectures, I speak on radlo, TV, I wrlte books. From thls I thtnk three thtngs may happen. T?rere's aldnr:l of spectrurnof posstbtltdes and I thlnk at one errd, for many

dcs

people, IJust put a pebblein their shoewhich

they can't get out. I mean, the vast maJorlty of peoph who trear me speak or read some of my shrlf, wtrether they are parents or teachers, thlnk, '\l/ell, that's utter mbblsh," but thev can't qutte getback to where theywere beiore they ffrst heard tL There tt ts, it's in their shoe, they canrrct altogether escape it. The world looks a littlebttdilferent fromthewav

ttlookedbefore Then there are many people who I think harrc lntuited, as teachers orpa.rents, that

therewas sornettrlng not qulte rlghtabout what they urcre dotn& that tt wasn't working out the way they had hoped. Here they get a sense, perhaps, of 'Thts tswhy." I liketo thlnk I'm shtning a ltght on my owrr experlence whlch makes them able to see thelr own expertenc.e ln a rather dllferent lght, perhaps learn somethlng nanr from it. Ftnally, there are those people who had already more orless corne to the sarne concluslon themselves. butwere afraid to tnrst tt. I thlnk of my own very good filend James Hemdon [author of How to Sut'ufin in Your Nalltn Land and Tlv Wog It Spzd, tD k, both avatlable herel. I was at hls house once, rvewere talldng about somethtng (not educatton), drinldng a beer and having a gmd tlme. He suddenly stopped in the mtddle of a sentence and looked at me for a second and said, 'Uohn, doyou knowwhatyour ffrst book did for me?' I said, "No, Jirn, what did it do for you?" He said, "lt convinced me that I wasn't

crazt."


24 ISS:I We

getlmers all tle dne saAtg.Jtst

abd Jdwt s ds ard. ^}rrr;d CW$ and tlo* oJ gou uslto Senfu d gourselte s In dtscrlss&cns abo t. gortr rwt'tdlllotol vleuts mog awnter ananghgle h t{s'tldtd tlds

gt

tottp'

toTettlnt yanr tlne'lro.s ben ux;[

spnL Yet ushatJdvt sogs alrltt tle rcspn*s oJtJe otJer htn gouPs makes ftsanrJust as i:qthwhlle to talk to tlem - as ma ng oJ ng epederces hawprotrn tt ts. Does ongorTe lwn ang tlrrnghts onthls?

VISION TRAINING MAY HELP Readers twe uttiltenus abutThe l\{agtc Feather, (EP. Dufrs\ 7986) arew fuk In tuhlch aurlors BllI atd' InAGratger desdb whattleg,Ent thtoughto reep tMr *no'ft

ofthe brain called the vtsual @rtex, the result what we call vislon. In short, vision gfves meanln$to what the eyes send ln " Vlslon, then, has to doudth how the eyes urork together, and accordlng to Dr. Edelman, young chlldr€n whose ryes have not leamed to woik as urcll as they mlglrtwlll appear to have rnany of the qrmptoms sctrools now assocfatewlth "hyperactM!y'' and "leaming dlsabilities." Dr. Edelrnan reGrred me to Dr. ts

Rtchard Appell at the Gessell Insdtute (3 lO Prospect St, New Haven CT 065 I l) who added tbat stness and arudety are ltkely to have negative effects onvtsud abtlity, partrcularly whenacblldfeels he lebetngasked to do somethtnAthat theadultexpects htm to be able todolsays Dr. Appell,'Thechtld thlnks,

Thevwouldn task me todo thls lftheydtdnt thtnl(I could do tt,' and when he can'tdo tt he

oJ" sp<r;ial dtrcadonl cliesses. FlpmThe New York Tlmes's ra) bw oJ tlc bcJe:

becomeg enen more an:dous."

Lorl and Btll Gr:anger, rniddle-class, welleducated pa.rents ln suburbanChlcago, were tnformed one daybythelr school psychologtst that thelr amiable son, Alec, 6, who could read serrcralyears abovehtsgrade level, had anI.Q. of47. Alec, ttrywere told, could only cope lfheurcre placed tn sornethtng

thelr ddldren to read atyoung ages, but add tlrat therc's nothlngwrongwtth allowlng a chlld wtro ls cbarly ready ard able to read at 3 or4 to do so. 'It's aquestlon ofhowmuch stress ts betegput oh thechild's vtsual

euphemtstlcally calbd "spedal educaflon"

....{.s the Grangers' book and rec.ent harre shown, speclal educaflon classes - establlshed for

govemrrrntal studies

emodonally and ptrysically handrcapped children - have too often beome the dumptng Around for those students whom teachers find inerely trroublesorne or a little slow ln

ttre

. . .In the flrst part of.Tlv Magb Feollvr named for ttre leather tlnt helps Walt Disrry's Dumbo to lly), tlre Grangers gtrc a dtshrbtng but compelltng account of thetr battles to keepAhc outofspectal educadon classes and ofthetrdeclsionto ghreup onthe publtc school systemand opt fora Montessorl school. Ttrq wouldn't stard for sPectal education forAlec because "lt teaches ldds howtobe fallures and to ltvewlthbelng fallures.It segregates ldds from "normal" ldds by puttfng spectal labels on them, Puttltrg them ln speclal classroorns, putflng them trt separate schools, and maklng certatn that not too much ls errcrasked ofthernorexpected of

then" E\rcnhrallyttulas found thatAlec had no serlous dlsorder but a problern wlth hts eyestght thatnas then rapfd$ cu€d.

soughtvtgrral hralning by bhat ttoral optometrlsta (who dfsdngufsh themsehrcs from optometrlsts spectalizlng ln other branches ofthe ffeld), Serrcral ofour readers have expressed lnteregt ln the tdea that a chtld's dfflculty with r€adlng (or otlrcrwork thatrcqulres focusfingon sorrrcthlng dose to theeyes) may becaused byvtston problems, ard*trtle I uqgelnterested readers todo thelr own research, I'rrc done a brlef (ard by no means extraustlve) lnvestlgadon ofwhat optometrlsts say about thf s. ' Dr. Ellts Bielman tn Pennsylrranta has ISS:I Ttre Grangers for Alec, a therapy used

wrlttcn abook cnnd ne &ddanlY Sucesslftrl Strdenl (arrailable fromThe

WrtttngTeam, 2 lO FoplarAve, Wayne PA l9O8Z tnwtrtch he dlsttngulshes betn een s@fuandutsicru

"Sptrtls the abtlrty ofthe eyes to focrrs clearlv: lt ls one of manv sldlls wtrlch make up vtiton. Vfsionts soniethlng btgger and allembracfng. When thenartous vlsual sldlls (slght, focuslng, convelglng, fxatlon' tearnlng) lntegrate efrcientlywtth that Part

One of the thlngs thatwould botherme uras notbetng able to read the menu in restaurants. Momwould help me, then say somethlng ltke, 'Well, tfyou learn how to read thenyou won't need my help." If s so exciflng , toJustgo tnto arestaurantand beable to read

themenu.

I have a theory aboutwhy I didn t like readtng. When Mom reads to me, I get a Picture tn my head, lf s Lke my ourn play. When I read to myself, my reading was so choppy that I couldn't get the ptcture. I'm stlll not a great reader, but I'm still worldng on tt and getting better.

Both [lr. Edelman and Dr. Appell support wiltngnes of hornegchoolers rutto push

systerrL" satd Dr. Appell, Parents can be si:nstttve to thfs by irbUctng wtrether thelr

chlld complatnsofheadaches, tlred eyes, etc' after readtng. But ag;atn - I\rc meant only to tntrroduce readers to the ldea thatvlslon may be onefactorlnachlld's Me to conslder, alongwtth all the others, and to polntyou in a couple ofdtrecflonswhere furtherresearch is posslble.

learnlng. (so

I enJoy readlng to the children I babysit. Most of dhem haven t learned what good readtng ls so they don't know that mine is bad. There ls one girl I babyslt, she is 8 years old, and she ha.s learned but she isn't critical of me; urc read talCng tums.

READING AT [DF;] I unote to

12

anrfiertd Anlta Gbsg

MA),rut:14:

I lust spent some tlrne on thephone tatl.ltng to a ivoman whose oldest dbughter, age 9 , has only been to school for a few months here and there. The daughter ls not readtngand the motherls gettlngworrted. I told hei about some ldds we knew about like you, who didn't really start to read unfll they were 12 or so. She asked, dtdn't tt bother the ktds, dtdn t they compare ttremselneswlttr otherldds ln ttre nelglrborhood ard feel Uke somettrtng was urong wtth them? I satd thatyou stnrck me as aqulte selfconfident person, but that I umuld askyou. Were ttrerE ttmesvou feltbad about not readlng, or not reidrngvery urcll? Dtd arry of yourfamllyorfrterrds try to makeyou read?

At:dtdrcsprded: Itused tobotherrne and ltsfllldoes sorrretlmes but nottm often. Brenwhen I couldn t read, I always belterrcd that I would somedav, and Momwas wonderfu l. Whenerrcr I rvouH let drscouraged shewould say, 'You Just neil to practlce nrore," and sheuras rlght. Mothersterrd to be. I'vebeena mernberof4-H slnce'82. [DR: Antta and I had talked about how 4-H requfres fflling out forms. I I don't thfnk I uruuld harrc had theguts to do ttlfmybest frtend hadn tJotned wtth me. I thtnk lurculd havechtckened out. Wrltlng\r,as e1rcn harderfor rne than readlng. Thaturas why I loved wrttlng to John lHoltl so much. He couli tnterpret my letters and I dtdn't harrc to llgure out what trc unuld enJoy beartnf because I knew he unuld enjoy hchriqgwhaterrcr l wanted to saY.

LBARNING THB GOOD THINGS [DF;] As I uuent tluough tle fuk lssr.res o1f

tlv'Hlgtfigltts" tlat you'lltbtd' el.suivrc, I cane across thispos sqe bg Jolt:. tn Gti,ls #7 tlnt I hadJorgotten oll abuL As GWS, rorittrg

ure sal4, ure

dottplantorqrWtle nuferiol

ln back tssues, but ute'll malce an erceptlonJor

fuarls I tltlrtk tt b ars repafutg, espalallg stnce &nlarW ;:r;.rcrtts unrtderJust latonurchthey shntldcrtltclze *M.s - or

thls stay

bded

rrurch oJ

tle unld

-

to

tMr

chlldrenc

. ..I'm not sure thatwe need to say that any pardcular textbook ts mtsleading or fooltsh. lfwe ar€ able, over arrd over again, to make cbarto ctrlldren (orothers) wtrat thls or that textbook has made unclear, t}re children wlll soon draw thelr ov,rn conclusions about the worth of textbooks. If a chlld said me, 'Ttrts textbooklsn'tmuch good, b ft?" I rntiht a{ree t}rat no, ltwasn't. If s/he went on to say, ',Well, wtry dtd you get lt for me then?" I ndght savthatnoneofthe ones I looked at seemed to m6anybetter. From tbls the child rnrght conclude that textbookswere generally not much good, or perhaps, that there mtght be sorrre better textbooks somewhere but that s/hewas probably goingto haveto flnd them. Or, maybe, write them. Manvthfnss ln theworld around me seem to rie ugly-, wastefu l, follsh, cruel, destrucdrrc, and wtcked. How much of thls shouldl talktochildrenabout? I tend to Gel, not much. I prefer to let, or help, drildren explore as much of tlre world as they can, and th6n makeup thelrown mindsabouttt. If thry ask rre what I thlnk about sornettdng, I wtll tell thern But lf I have to crldclze the world tn thetr hearktg, I prefer to do it ln speclflcs, rather than glve the ldea that I thtnk the world , hgenera\ is a bad placc' I don t thfnk t ts, and for all the bad tlnt ts ln tt I would much ratherbe ln it than out of lt. I am ln no hurqr to bave. Even if I thouglrt the world, and thepeopleinit, wasmorebad than sood, I don't thbk I qtould tell ctrtldren so. ilrneenough forthemto leamall thatts bad. I would not harrc wanted to know, when I was vounE all that I now Imow about what ts wrongwlth tt rporld. I'm rrotsurethat I c'ould harrc stood to know it. Tlnre, and experiencc' and many frtends and pleasures, harrc gpen me rnaniassets to balancc against that knowbdge, things to put in the other side of the scabl. chtldren don'thave many ofthese. Then need ttme to learn about some of the

gooi thtngswhile theyareleaming (as they are bound to) about the bad. GRO\il'ING WTITIOI..IT SCHOOLING #56


25

DISCUSSION: HOMESCHOOLERS GROWING UP Many readers have told y: $"t.tlt-.yd lke to.se9 GWS gtve,more attentlon to lssues concerning the older homeschoooler. Being a young p-erso- n in our soclet5r is c-hallenging whether one is 2 or I 7, but there do seem to be some questtons that face older homeschoolers in particular - finding meaningfr-rl and-enJoyable work (as oppo.sed to a '.Job" or "c-areef'), maktng one's way without academic credential..s, or fig;urlng out no-n-traditional ways- to obtatn-those cred6ntials, and so on. Belo#, long-tinie homeschoolers write about these questions, and we hope others-ofyou will do the same.

BIOLOGY WITHOUT SCHOOL FronBriltBarker (OIil: In 1985 I wrote to a number of organizations about naturalist experlences withoutluck. I thenwrote to John HolL and DonnaRichoux suggested I c.ontact herfriends the Karstad-Schuelers of Ontario. Aleta Karstad is awildlife ardst and naturalist writer and her husband, Fred Schueler, is a

biologist. Arrangements were made and I traveled for eight weeks wtth them through central and western Canada wtth even a trlp up to Churchill on the Arctic Circle. Durlng this tirne I was able to sell aweekly column to our local paper about my travels, called "ktters Home."The column ls set olTbv a wonderful sketch of mewritingin myi6urnal which Aletadid when I firstjoined them. I loved being in the lteld and had many interesting and exciflrg experiences whlle traveling wtth the Schuelers. However, I began to d

thinkmy tnterest laymore in the

irection of wildlife c.onservafl on rather than

analyticalbiologr.

Back home in Ohlo, I continued mv work writer for the newspaper driring 1986. I also contkrued to play slacaical piane at a nearby Inn for $3o/hr, as well as carr5r on my piano studies at tlre college of Wooster (though I'm not enrolled there). With the earnings from my piano work, my newspaper columnandthrer ardcles I had sold to the Mother futthNews, I hoped to save enough for other natur,'allst oppo-rtunides. One day ln Febmary, all seven of us ulent to a "Summer Opportunifies Falt'' to promote our surnmer prograrn Richarrd told me of an as a feature

exhibit that looked Just rlght for me. Out of curiosigr I urcnt to check it out. What I found was Earthwatch, a nonprofit organizaflon that places l,ay volunteelrs with ibientific erpeditions throughout tlre world. When I looked at their furformaflon and saw the many possibilides I was thrilled - but immediately saw that the cost would probably be prohibitive ($9OO to $ f 8OO for two weeks) . Still, I couldn't help portng over the brochure. Projects ranged from teachtng dolphins language in Hawafl to excavaflng ancient cities in Israel, following orangutans in central Ebrneo, studytng Darwin's famous Iinches on tlre G.laFagos Islands, ftlrning the Bumba-Meu-Boi folk opera tn BraAllor public television broadcast, explorlng the interior of a volcano ln Icelarrd , studylng the herons of the RhoneValley in southern France, timberwolves in Minnesota, kangaroos inAustralia, etc. In addidon were virtually hundreds ofresearch proJects tn the areas of agriculture, animal behavtor,

anthropologr, ecolog$, archeolory and ornlthologr. All of them were real, ln-the-fi eld professional research proJects, proJects that have been going on foryears. They are now accepflngvolunteers from Earthwatch to help with their ffnances aswellas provlde labor and assistarrce to theirwork. The Earthuratch GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #56

representaflve I spoke to at the falr encouraged me to complete a prelimtnary fellowstrip appltcaUonithough tt was

doubtful anytbtngumuld come oflt slnce I was neither a full-dme student nor teacheras tn thelr stated rcqulnements. So many of the proJects tnterested me tt was hard to make three cholccs. I llnallv settled on studytng/tracldngwolves tnihe

Appennlne mountalns of central Italy as my first choic.e, and wtld mountaln goats ln Crete and barnacle geesein Scotland as my sec.ond and third choices. Thetr prompt wrttten reply tncluded a 4pag1e applicaflon as rpellas a requlrement to wrlte tu/o essays, oneabout howl planned to make use ofmy sketches, Journal notes and Earthwatch experlence, and tlre other sa5dng,

'You have been $ven the opportunl$r to stud5r with the person ofyour cholce, elther alve or dead, for one year. Who urould you choose,

whatwould you study, and wh5r?" In my essays I detailed my plan to collect matertal for my "Letters Home" column. It seerned a perfectopporhrnlty not only to do meantngful work and nreet lnteresttng people, but also to

newpartsofthe ',rorld and all thewhlle wdflng letters home to my frtends and se€

readers and sharing my experiences wlth them. So with high hopes, but low expectadons, I s€nt tt all olfwlth photocoptes ofseveral "ktters Home" from Cinadaand a page ofuratercolors from my Churchill

Joumal. long before I even expected an answer, I recelved

aletterwlth the news,

"Congratulaflons, Earthrlatch ls pleased to aurard you an Argabrite Scholarshlpl Thfs honor i:s made possible through the generous support ofMr. GeorgeArgabrite. You have been accepted as a member of the "Greek Mountaln Goats" proJect tn Greece, onTeam

II... Thls ls a full $l3OO scholarshlp whlch coversyou share ofcosts... The scholar:ship also provtdes ficra$4OO trarrcl sdpend." I was overwhelrned wlth exdtement and kept readlng the letteroverand overagaln, scarcely believlng ttrat ttrts rvas really true. Along with the letter came a I 8o-page expediuon briefing which garrc me all the informatlon I needed to know about my project. I so anUclpated myforthcomfngtrtp to Greecc that I devoured the lnformaflon sent and learned much about the Cretan agdnf, Oneday the mall brought a letter from Earthwatch and for once I dtd not eagerly tear It open - somethteg told me that the news was not good. I qutetly slipped away to open and read the letten "Unfortunately, Husband's goat study tn Crete has been cancelled slnce not enoughvolunteers have stgned on to make itavlable proJect...Wewould llke to transfer you to Franclsct'swolfstudy ln ltaly...The grant will still coveryour share ofcosts." I gaveEarthwatch acall -uras thereany posslbleway the proJect rntght sdll go? I got the whole story. F irst of all, the proJect, a new one, was one of the most strenuous - thus dlscouraging many people. Therefore, not many people slgned on in the begtnntng. Then after the Libyan crlsls, most of those withdrerv. Wtthout the nec'essarv funds and

Iabor, ltwas tmpossible to carqr throughwith the expedltlon. They hope to tryagain next year, and wlll keep me tnformed. Somewhat reluctantlv I hrmed to the wolf proJect and stgned up-in the last available spac.e on teamVll, ln October. I learned a btt about the erqedtflon. We would llve ln a house tn a flny (populaflon 2OO) village ln theAppennlnes Mountalns of ccntral Italy, about I 30 krn east of Rome. Alongwlth thewolf study, urcwould learn much about the culture of these If'liar mountaln people slncewewould live among them, shartng the vlllage cafes and so on. We would be radt'o monttortng tnm subject anlmals condnuously (24 hours) for two days each week. Itallanlr,olves lnterbreedingwith feral dogs are betngweakened geneflcally. This, along wtth poachtng and territorial lrwasion, is slowly wiping out the population of these magnlff

cqrt creatures.

Well, that gtves you an idea of how I went about seeldng a naturallst experlence for myself. I dtd go to Italy and the time I spent in the beautlful mountatns wlth the

warm

Italran psoplswlllstaytn myhead and heart for a long tlme; lt was a wonderfirl and inspiring experlence. I\rc nodc:ed ttratwhen I'm in tle ffeld with btologlsts, I'm so elated and happy to be on our beaudftrl earth and I thlnk "this fs certalnly the hfe for me": then I begin rntsstng my music so much, my heart longs for music agatn and my ffngprs yearn to play. On ttre other hand, durlng the time on that same trlp that I spent at tlre c.onservatory ln Germany surrounded by mustc, I was filled wtthJoy to have so muchofwhat I love

round 1ne: ttrenl thought, "I amhappybutl long for the peace of the countryslde, to be onc€ agaln ln solttude on God's beautiful earth away from the fast pac.e, noise and pollution of the cides. " I am lnsplrred by Krishnamurti (hts ?hlrrlc on Tlese Thrgs is very irnportant to me) and hts ideaofdotngwhatyou loveand lovtng what you do. Though I'm not certain about my future I know tt wlll work out if I can keep that idea foremost tn my thinking.

THOUGHTS AFTER 10 YEARS F}omBrlt/s nvtlvn Perury Botker Brltt's adventure in Italy and other parts of Europe causes me to reflecton hertenyears oflndependence as an unschooler. She ii one of the many horneschoolers I lorowwho is cudnuing tn the same moflvated and

splrlted rnanner that was so much a part of her gro-wing-up years. Brttt was able to bring lots of her tnterests together on thls trlp

biologl, muslc, nafure \yrittng sketching and trarrcl. My approach to learning has notbeen the "take them to thls tutororthatexperience, run yourwhole ltG around them" approach but more of an allowing them to derrelop wlthln the work we've chosen for ourselves. I'vebeenvery unstmctured in myapproach to curriculum, preferring real-llfe education. I wartt to quote fromBrltt's letters to us from


26

Europe stncc I t}ink tt gfues a Sgod ptcture of a youngperson raised tn a somewhat tsolated ietting in the country, r€sPonstble for a good deal of "chortn$' type urcrk, gotng lnto the_ world and handlfiag tt superbly because of an inner strength born of untnsfl hrflonallzed tving. IVe frmed exctrPts fromBrltfs letters

khd ard during tlmes when her actual work attlee tnstmmeitseemed mtntmal, urc sflll

thebasis of "whenyou have somethingyou want to say based on your oqtn experlence' writingwill c'ome easlly foryou." Jonah (8)

tndependent learner, would probably flnd a way 6f brlngfng flrst-hand o<perlences with music tnto her ltfe durlnghertravels. She tells us: "Frtday, Joust" a German biologts! took Mlguelo to L'Aqutla for a classical gurtar lesson at the consenratory and lwentwiththem" I mendoned sometlrtng about a plano to pracflce at the co-nservatory butJoustwas pretty sure ttunuld be trnpossible - he safd llr ltaly they are strlct about those tlrtngs. That eventng Joust' Meeuela, MiArclA's hstructorand I all met at

wlth-mv own comrrrcnts urhtch I feel are relerrarit to ho meschoolers. Writing in our famtly has always been on

and Ben (lO) do notwriteyeL Maggtebegan

writinA at lO and Dan not undl hewas

I2

and

sh6r0y after each started wrtflng' they vet -wrote articles on thelr experiences wlth various farmanlmals and sold themto ?he MotherfutthNews. lv1y potnt ls not "look how great my klds are" but to assure y,o,u that late writing is not a stgn ofdellctency. Maggie' Britt and Dan have always wrltten from personal desire, not from a sense ofcoerclon ind not because weryone else v/as doing lL "So very much has been happenfng - rny notebook is always with rrrc and fflling up fastl I've been takinq notes on errerythinf."

Brittwrltes fromOrdndolt, Italy:

I*have always

emptras*a "aolng" rather

than befu:g saflsfled wlth secondary sources of informadon. In John Holfs o$mwords, "I never allow myself to forget that som@ne' somenrhere, has to s€e ordo somethlng directly before lt can be wrltten abouL I sflll learnalot more by loolCngand llstentngand thin-ldnAaboutwhat I see and trearthanl do bv reading." Brttt exhfbtts thts approach when she-wrttes, "If there's a chance to do something, I do lt rather than staytng horne andwriung ltke I'm sorrrtlmes tempted to do' there are so many thlngs to wrtte This way, -so about - manyt I want to get the most from thls experiencr." ha\rc been her four siblines and Richard and me, but now the

Biltf s greatest frlends

tirneh--as c.ome for her

tourlden herclrcle of

social contacts and enPerlence relaflonshlps outstde of the fantly' She wrote us warmdescriptlons of herfilends, Georgto,

24-vear-old Itallan Araduate student assistmg n the Wo|fF,oPct and Paulo, anotherbiologr studen! who loves Choptn and sleeping G the mountalns. Despite her somewhat isolated life, Brtttfound socialidngwith otlrers no problem. kr her ownurordi: 'Thts trtp ls really oPenlng new a

horizonsand reallzaflons to me -areal awakenir4 to different lands and people. It ts wonderfirl to be mbdngwfth people wtth whom I can have'thlnldng'conversatlons. I really feel that these are tFe ldnd of people I need to be around. I feel upMted when I've

beenwiththern"

Except forher homeschooled ftends, Tim and David Ught, Brttt had sadly found thatmostoftheyoung people she dtd rneet heneat home shared neltherherlove for rrature nor her love for muslc, but a happy Britt writes from the mountalns of ltaly: 'Today out monitoring the wolves I had a wond6rfirl ttmeJust completely'betng' ln the Appennines...Ltlfe ls wonderfrrl; tf s good to lmbw I harrc such awarm, suppordrrc famtly baclidng me up. I could hardly ask for more thanlhavenow- music, blology - butmy fingers arettching fora ptano." Britt has had a strong lnterest ln muslc sincc she firstbegan playingthe ptano al9. Though mustc has alurays been a part of our envirrdnment, Brttt's lnvolvernent wtth the ptano has ahpaysbeenofherown chotcc - we herrer used moEvaflonal enflcements of any

allowed herwork on lt to be her cbotce' not our:s. We now hanrc an l8-year-old who has a

Areat love formustc. We lorewthat thouglt britt had arranged to take a feut rraster classes at a conservatory tn GermanJr' for the most part she would be leavtngl her formal piano studies behlnd whlle she traveled for nine qrceks. We also knew that Britt, as an

me thatMs teacherwould try to Aet a piano for me to pracdcc, tn hls

acifeand thiytold

nime, f t cime fur the next momtngl

He spoke

no EnAlish soJoust translated. On Sahrrday momlig I awoke at 6:O0 a.m., cau$lrt the bus

overthe-rnountatns to L'Aqullaand found the

conservatory by 8:3O. M's instmctor smiled as I wallred ln ind led me to a lovelyold room wlthanqels patnted tnbeautlful deslgns on the ceiltig aird a shtnlng grand ptanol Thrc and a half hours ofurcnderfirl pracfldng satisfled the longtng my flngers were bedruring to feel." - Britt felt the Earttrwatch proJect ttself was very unrthwtrlle and she has wrttten tn sreat datatl about her achral traclrtng and ironrtoringofthewolves but there lsn't space to share lt all. After herCanadlan e:9€rlenc€ Britt had felt that btolo$sts were tralned to take apart aurcrld she had ahvays lnen as a whole, but her experlenc€ wlth the bfologtsts ofltalv convlnced-her that she could condnue to see-the world as a whole and pursue her interest in biologl. It convlnced me that matchlng ouryoung peoplewlth the rtght sttuatton ls very tmPortant, and lt rntght-take some experlmehUng. E:cposure to lots of dilferenf experlences can lead to further exploradon As Brttt tells us tn a letGr posted from France: 'Thouglr Flancc ts lorrcly, the

morel seeofltthe rrnrel longforltalyl Oh well, t knour I'll be back to ltaly, maybe for a year or so to leam the language, study muslc, btologr..." I harrc occaslonallyunndered as Brltt was growtngupabout her lackofexposure to "unrld hlstory'and '\rcrld geography." Srnce these subJectswere not relenant to Brltt's Me on the hrmstead there was rrot an tnterest ln thern WtthBrtttwrlflng to usabout "the medtevalwall surroundlng llcra' and ttre "ancient Romans breedtng for the color 'white"' I am convlnced that theyounger four wtll get thetr exposure to these subJects as their ltves are ready for them, not as sorne irrelevent and obscule facts that hatrc nothtng to do wlth thelr rryorld. And thouglt I had nderhad muchconffdencrln those

beautlful wooden puzzle maps of Eumpe I had tn my "fully equlpped" Montessorl classroom, I'm iow convtnceii that Brttt's dlslnterest ln them was no handlcap for her. In planntng heritlnerarywith r€gard to the Eurail paql she purchaied, she pored orrcr the map of Eur6pe pickfngout themost efflclent routes from lta$t to Flance and then on to Swttzerland, Austrla, Germany' uP to Denmark and across the North Sea to Scotland. Here she took to closely ocamtnte$ the map of Great Brttalnwhere her Britrail

passwould enable her to travelby trafn throuqh Scotland, Wales and England. In addrflon to theyouth hoetels shervould use alon( the way, she had rnade arrangements to staywtth many peoph along these routeswho would be orpecting her at apprordrnate times so her plannlng could not be haphazard . -

After all her planntng maP shrdY, and then traveltng riglrt through this geograpy' she ts ltr/ng tL Llke so much of her leamlng' tt becnmes part of her, Brttf s experlence has more than errcr convlnced me that textbooks are not aneclessary part ofeducaflon and that the "dotng" approach to ltfe for our chlldren works better than falltng under the vlcarious spell ofotlrer people s advenhrres.

RETHINKING "LETTING GO" I\wtNqtcUWolls.e(t{Y): Last summer, at 14, Ishmael attended TheYellow Barn Muslc Festlvnl. He felt a sreat deal oftnepldatlon at the thought of

6etns au/av from home for flve ueeks. He coulii phy nrahms and Beethoven to nrake weep, but hewasn t at all clear that he vou -c-ould w6rk a strange showerby hlmselfor make trts uray around a cafeterla- He had nevercut hls ovm flngemails. We feltthe same treplda$on at the thought of havlng trtm gonC. But desplte our feellngs I stron$y

encouaged tdmto go. TtrfJyear, the fesflval ts arudous to have Ishrnel back but he ls less than eager to go. '"laytng the Mozartwtth thevlollnlstwho dtdn'terrcn nodce that shewas outoftune and the Schumannwtth peoplewho didn't

care about getflng the rhythm rtght was totally depressrng," he satd. He felt that the strafn of betng on hls own ln theYellow Bam

envlronmentdetracted from hts playlng, or

from how he percetved tt, anyway. He worked, hand, unrrted, and arrtned home traumafrzed because he hadn tcomposed anotedurtngthe wtroleffrrcurceks. Recognlzhg that they made a mtstake

lastyear, theYellow Bam people harrc pronrlsed to asslgn Ishrnael to chamber groupswtth the really good players. Now, [htnldngabout thts at thebr€akfasttable as another sumrner approaches, an ttrter€stlng tdeapopstnto my head' What lfwerented a cottage (and aptano forVtta) nearYellow

Barnlor the summer? Ishmael could live wtth us. Vltacould practic'e and "make thlngs"Just as easily as at home, Bob could wrtte and Ishrnaeiwould be free to play hts heartout wtthout the constant worry and stress. Just as funportant, weurculdn'tharrcto spend the - wtbb summer rnlsstng each other likeure did lastvear. Bob likes the tdea immediately. Wh6n Ishmael comes downstalrs on trls way to the piano he too seems to Ike it. "Of course thfnkabout lt," lre says. As for me, I feel almost llberated. soluflon llke that would hane been

I'U ha\rc to

lnconcelrrable ayearago'

A

Iturasonlyafter

-,

survMng that summer - provlng thathecould manageon htsoumand tlratI could "lettrim eo" - tEat I f.lt frree, as I dtd at the breakfast IaUn, to Urtnt< up a soludon to the "Ishmael really needs to be out playtng chamber music" problem thatdtdn t lnvohrc shovlnghlmout ihe door and purposefully cutttng the aPron strlnEs.

iVhen Ishrnaelwas born, slxweeks early'

therr put blm ln a basslnet next to tlre

dellrcry

tabie. He crted ard crled. "l.et me comfort hfrr1" I sald. "No," they laughed. "He needs to GRO}VING WTTTIOUT SCH@I.ING #56


n

cry. It's good for hts lungs." floctors, frlerxCs and relatfircs toH rnethatttwould be dangerous for baby Ishmael to sleep tn our bed. They toH me to stop gettlng up wlth hnm

atntglrtafterflrrcrnonths fltle s spothd') and

to wean hlm at ayear. Ttre1r said, "Serd hlm to nursery schooland ldndergprten He needs ttme away ftromyou." Ttrey told me to malrc

htmdp hls ornJad<etand leamtotle lrls

shoes. Wherr uie took Ishrnael out of school at the begtrmtng of second grade, the school people sald, You can't stand betc,een hftn and

tlrervorld forever."

Allaroundus therels suchpressure to let wtth so ltttle support for ar5r other

go, and

atdhrdewe often put the same pnessure on

ourselves, Jean Lledloff says tn llc Ccrttfrull.tn e.orwp{ "E\rcr more frequently our lnnate sense ofwhat ls best forus is shortclrculted by susplc,tonwhtle tbe tntellect, whlch has nerrcr known much about our real needs, decdde wtrat to do." The summer after we took Ishmacl out of school, we sent hlm to camp. Dtd I really harrc to prove to thenrorld (and to mysell) that I could cut tJre apron strlngs? Italmosturrecked me to leave hlm there] that flrst day, but I tolC myself that I had to. Forhfrn" the enperlenccnras a complete ntgtrtrnare. Whenurc arrlved to plck htn up threeurcelcs later he boked ranaged. Heuas fflthy, hts halruasfullofllceand trts face uras cov€red wlth sores. Later on ln ??re Corry'tntntm C.;owpt Jen IJedloffsays, 'Tlre growth of lnrdeperrCence and the pourrto rnature ernotbnaly sprlng largely ftom the ln-arms rcl,aflonshlp tn all Its aspects. One conrpt therefore becorrrc tndepernCent ofthe mother, except tlvutgh her, through her playlnghercorrectrob, gMng the tn-arrrs experlerrc= and allowlng one to graduate frrom tt upon fulffllment " Sdll furtheron shc says, The obJect ofa ctrfld's actMties, afterall, ts the derrclopment of self-reltance. To glrrc etther more or less asslstance than he nceds terds to defeat that

purpose."

In a'ontlnuum" famll5l therc ls no quesdon of 'lettlng go." Babiesurrtggfe out of thelr mothers arms when ttrry are ready and returnwhen they are equaly rcady, WhenVttawas 2 I /2, I satdoun ln the rocklng chatr, all set to nursc trcr to sleep. Slc sucked fora coupleofseconds and then pulled herself up. "l{o nuss," she said, boldng at me wtth her btg e1rcs. She nerrcrnursed agaln. When Ishrnael vras 3 I /2 and Vlta was a week old he sad, "I thtnk I can sleep through thenlghtfn myorrrrrbed now." He has ever slnc€. Yet I sent Ishmael auray to camp when he was notqulte 8 arrd I strong$encou::aged to go toYellowBarn. John Holt, tn Escqpe N)om talks about how most of us vlew the

hlm

CdMM"

. ,

lnsdhrtlon ofchltrdhood as a ktnd oftdeallzed protecdve garden. "But I belterre that rnost youngp€ople," hewrltes, "and atearllerand earllerages, begtn to errpertence chtldhood not as a garden but as aprlson What I want to do ts put a gate, or gates, lnto tlrc wall of the garden, so thatthosewho ffnd ttno longer protecttve or helpfirl, but tnstead conllnhg or humtliattng, can rrprrc out of lt and for a while try livlng tn a larger spacc. If that prorrcs too muchforthenl theycan ahrays come back Into t}re garden, " Sdll feellng those old pressures, I keep testlng tIrc gates, rrnklng sure that ttrey'll swlng open when Ishmael

wantsthemtoo. In contlnuum fardlfes babtes urriggle out ofthetr rnothefs arms. Fora rrrother to stmplyput trcrcldld down (to "test thegates," GROWING WTTI{OUT SCHOOLING #56 I

as I nras dolng) would consdhrte rreglect. It's as tf in ttrts soctety we\rc gotten errcrythtng baclsnrards. We constantlyfeel that there's

ourteachers had sard, 'Pur:suewhatyou love and what lrrterests you. We are here, not to lnterfere, but to help ln anywayure canL"

sometlrtngwrongwtth us ifwe don't put our chlldren down Whatwe can nerrcrqutte tmst ls that our children udl learrc our arms and

Vtta and Ishmael hanrc been allowed absolute frreedomand glven absolute support fn thatvray. Nerrer dld we say, 'Vita, its time to putaway thepaste and paperand do spelltng, " but only, "Do you have enough paste?" The excidng thfng, as a result, is that desplte the fact that they are sdll baclnrrard in some ways, Vlta and Ishmael are now gradually focusLg their lnterests, testlng and orperlmenflngwtth thern They are metamorphoslzlng tnto adults theway children hane done slnce dme began. "But" you mtght obJect (pointing out that thls ts, after all, the 2oth ccntury and that clrtldren these days have about amillion more cholcrs to make than arrycave man ever dreamed oI),'bbvlouslyVita and Ishmael are goAE to ha\re an easy tlme of tt. Haven t they always knownwhat theywanted to do?" Partly. Ishmael probably knew from the day that he touched a ptano that he could nerrcr llrrc wlthout lt. Severalyears later we began to realtze that everything he had done and pursued wlth passlon before that day shaped hls mustcal abllltyand understandtng - carpentry, bu{dtngwtthblocks, writing and readhg. But nour I see that if s not simply a questlon of whether or not Ishmael will be a muslcian but hou he wlll be one. That ls the part of the process that I nerrer andcipated because I neler had the freedom to see lt derclop tn myself (at leastwhile I was still

uralk out the gate when tlrey harrc a place

t}at

thcywant to go, ThattswhyJohn, when he talked about chlldren openlng the garden gate, was rrcry speclflc about that gate belng the path out of chlldhood and lnto the adultworld, as lt ts for Jean LledloflsYequana Indtans, SheurlGs about a 2-year-old glrl attempttng to grate manloc wlth the women and older glrls. At flrst the ltttle gtrl ptclred up a large chunk of manloc and trted to rub lt agalnst another gtrl's grater, butthechunkwas too largeand she kept dropplng tL "An alfecdonate smlle and a smaller plee of mantoc came frrom her netglrbor, and her mother, ready for tlre tnevltable tmpulse to sho$rlts€lf, handed her a tlnygtatlngboad of heroum."Alread5l, a step out of the garden and d wo.trn uA@me

Irltotlv

dultunld-

In our soctety, nrc so seldom gllve ctrlldren a uarmwelcome. Soclety pressures me to let Vlta arxl Ishmael go, ard yet tt seldom allows ttrem a reasonable place to go. Now that Ishmael has a place he rvants to go - the world of muslc - the same peoplewho told us to send hfmto ldndeqgarten tellus thathe shouldn't be ln such a hurry.'You are denylng hlm a chtldhood," they say. In descrtbtng Me as tdeally "a cune of conttnual growth and change," John couldn t help but larnent t}e rnodem-day nodon that at some spectflc polnt (usuallyupon leavtng schol) the child must suddenly uralk (or be shorcd) out ofthe garden, get aJob and rrctarmrphostze lnto an adulL He calls thls modem-day rtte of passage "the great dMde" the break tn t}e currrc. Of course, when errcryone told me to send Ishmael to ldndergarten becausc he needed to spend tlrne away from me, what theywere thtnldng, I'm surc, was that ltwas best to begfr1 errcntherl to

preparchtmfor

adulthood and that by starung so early he would nerrcrhave to er<pertence thatabrupt

"break."T?re lCeaof the gradual q.rrve ls not new or errcn radlcal, tn theory. t\rttlng lt tnto pracdce ls another matter. Rather than

telltngmethatlshmael needed to be wlth r€al peopletn the realrvorld, what these people were telltr4 me, tn elfect, was that Ishnael had to learn, gradualy, to learrc hls garden full of lcve, care, lrlrolvement and respect and enter an erMronment (llke schooD ftlled wtth arbltradness, clmpetlfl\reness and even, oc.caslonally, vlclousrress - an envlronment that has nothtngto dowtth "the cunrc" atall. Ironlcally, the adultumrld @ond school, Itke the chtld's garden, holds wtthln tt those very same qualides of love, care, tnnolverrrent and respect. If tt dtdn't, no chlld would ever choose to wrlggle out of hls rnama's arrns and enter lt. No carlng parent would errer allow

himto. Manyofus flnd ourselrrcs on the far slde ofthe garden gatewith no ldeaofwhaturc wanttodo. Whenlwasyounger, I found that errcn tfafervofmy frtends dtd harrc sorne lCea,

the trrth was that for all of us, the process we had gorre throughhad beennarped, delayed and tnterfered wtth by our school experlenc=. It ts as tfsctroolactualtyprevented us from tahng ogertmental steps out of the garden by keeptng us tn a sort of purgatory between chlldhood and adulthood, an empty placr wherewe had nelther the tlme northe space to dlscoverwhaturc really cared abouL lfonly

under3Ol). Wtren Ishmaelwas 12 and gave his first tt was lnconc€firable to him that he could errer play more than one recital ayear, because tt took so much preparation. Thls year he gave two recltals and serreral chamber muslc performanccs, and he partk'fpated fn a plano crompetition (which he won). Hetsbeglnntngto understarrC his own learnfng process; to know how long it takes hlm to rrrmorlze a plece; to knowwhen he feels conffdentthataptece ts "ready." Heis learnlng how a ptece changes frrom performance to performance and how to dellght tr1 r:ather than fear, that charqge. But he fs learning more thanJust how to understand hls lnternal responses to music. He - and Vlta too - are leamtng how to pursue thetr lorrcswlthln the realmofthe rnarket place. For the longest drne, even though my parents alurays loved theirwork, I thought thatatleasttn chlldhood there had tobea separ:aflon bet'dreen a person's work and his tnterests. That ls, wlrenyouwerea lidd I flgured that the most you cnuld ecpecturas to morv lawns orbabystl Certain}, I thought, it rvould be ddtculous to tmagine thatyou could

fi:ll-length recftal

dandng or palntlng, or studying tnsects, orplaying the piano. At the same ttme I rvas firmly c.ommitted to the tdea that chlldren slpuldwork and earn money (ln prepar:adon foradulthood, naturalVl). ButwhenVita and Ishmael came alongwerythingchanged. I mean, whatwas I ever get a payhgJob

supposed to do - tntermpt Ishrnael, hard at

work on hls cello sonata" and suggest that he go out and shovel sidewalks? Or tell Vtta to put down her vtolfn and see lf the neighbors uranted thelr lawn raked? And yet gradually they did start to brtng tn money. I astyear, in fac! they earned more than I ditl - over $ IOOO for playing recirals 6nd winnin! competldons. Vita earned a tidy sum, too, wtth her "Goody Buys" Christrnas card

business. For Ishmael, eaming his bread and butter ls becomiqg nahrrally cronflnuouswlth


28

dolng theuiork that he lorrcs, and yet once agatn, how he wlll choose to pursue that work ls sdll a quesdon. T don t want my w|fe to

support me hkeall theothercomposers I

knbw," he says conservatfve[. D'oes that mean hewtll getacushyJob tn a untversttJ/?

Orwould hepreferto ltvetn NewYorkCtW 0n a garret, ofcourse) v/rfthg granC operas and acicompan5dngdarrce clases to pay the rent?

hewantto beaconcertplanlst and ltve in hotels, atrports and recordtng shrdlos? Or eke out a lMng playlng; occastonal recttals ln second-rate halls (but maldng great musiQ? Ishmael ts full ofpreconc€Pdons. People have been feedlng trtm stereot5rpes foryear:s. ('The muslcworld ls tmposstble to gettnto."'A muslclan's llfe ts trall yet now, out of hls own ery)erlencre, he ts gradually begtnnlng to derrclop tris own models. ForVtta, meanwhlle, there ls an

Ooes

interestlng pull, since althoug! she can't lrrnglne, errea dotngwork that she doesn't love, she terds to want to Preserve her art and

mustc (her two passtons) for a rrrore Prhrate sphere. ['I nerrcrwarrt to be llke Susan Andrews who has to stay uP all ntght durtng theweeks before Chrlstmas maldng dolls that she doesn't even ltke," Vtta says.) These days tf vou ask herwhat shewants to do when she -grows up she'll probably say, "I want !o unrk in a serrrtng store selltng matertal, or do what I, do at the 6od co-op - bag nuts and ralslos and cutcheese."WhereVtta's pa.th ts leadtng her, I'm not sure. Horr tt ls leadtqg her ls endlessly fasctnaUng. Sometlmes, thouglr, I get tmpa.ttentwtth the process. It's so sbw, and ldds can secm at nrsf ghnce to be tncredlbly nalve. (\/ft4

what-rnakesyou thrnk that tfyou wene an ardstnou'd harrc to be llke SusanAndrews? Besd6s, don'tyou thtnk tlrat cutflng cheese mlghtgetborlng?") Forawhlle, too, Iwas prepared to say that teenaged "allenation" was absolutely unnecessary, at least for ldds lMng outside of the puqgatory ofschol and peer Pressune. Now Im not so sur€. I see Ishrnael, determlned to derrclop hls owntdeasabout reltgl'on phrilosopiry, oren people, and to test them lndeperrCently of us. Sometlmes I feel hls uncertatn$r, etren fear, as tf trc ts orMnced that trts trdeperrderrce - hle reJecdon of our ldeas - udllwound us ln some way. Someflmes weare abb to reassure hlrn Sometlmes he doesn't sem to want to be reassured. Folloqdngtlre currrc - even the gentlest one - lsn't al',na5rs easy for a cbild. For parcnts, the prncess can be scary. It tsn't ilurays easy ic trrst a child's wlsdom. Yet that ts

prectselywhatwe mustdo. Amotherwrote

rrrcrecently, "sometlmes I sflll lle awalre wonderlngtf l'm dotng the rtght thfng." Don we all? Ye[desptte our sleepless nghts, tts

t

iust so obrrlouJ tfrat neatttey ctrildrert when given fr,ee passage - tlre chancc to expertment wtthttre gardengate -wtllchoose the rtglrt path.

.'TEEN HOMESCHOOL GROUP'' Hdnu, drd hrrslultts {Box 9 1, Rcdeo NM88O56)wtte: We harrc been homeschoolers for several vears. Ourthree chlldren are now I I, 12 and i3, approachtng the "teen" years, and we foresee the need for some sortof peer group. We are trSrlnglto stay away fiom sendfng tle ctrildrenofftoa schooland would llke rather to seea srnallgroup of famtlteswlth ctrlldren of slmllarages-assoclate on some regular basts. To start, urc would be wllltng to harrc

children come and lfire here wtth us and rile would hope that ln tlme our chtldren could go Itrrcwlth others, We envlslon about trvelrre chtldnen ln the group, ourthree and nlne others. As horneschoolers our philosophy has been to allorv the children to direct thelr educaflon, to determlnewhat lnterests to followand howto followthern Weha're trted to orovlde plentv of materlals and factltdes

foithe derriloprirent of these tnterests aswell as malntaln a busy, acdrrc and lnteresdng; envlronmenl We are located ln a someryhat remote area of the desert soutllrrcst ln a rural settlng. We ar€ presently operatlng ?s a prtvate school wtrlch ls tncorporated ln the stateof NewModco, Arrord about o<penses for the proposed "teen homeschool group. " Wewould expect to operate thls on acost-effecu\re basls, i.e., each .irtldlr.rrld be chargedJustwhat lt costs to matntaln that chtld. Perhaps an exchange, such as three months oftqlo chtldren ln one famlly for stxmonthsofone chlld tnanother, couldbeworked out. Wedon'tsee thls as a commerclalrrcnture and I am sure whcver ls hosttng the group of chtldrenwtll be Putung a good dealofunpatd efrort tnto the group. We hope thatthe sptrttual rewards wtll rnakeup

rpt planning

thts as a school, l.e. an tnsfltuflonwlth responslbtltty for havlng the child learn a pa.rHcular subJect or sldll. If a farnily wants'a ctrtld to leari dgebrawe expect tt to take that responstbtltty on ttself. W6 see thts as a soclal grouP and thus the lnteracdon of chlldren ls lts prlme aspect. Ttrls should notmean thatno sldllsor cultur:al expertences wlll develop, only that spontanelt5rand motrntlon from the children are most tmportant. We hope to start thts proJect sometime in 1988. We do not hope to set ttall up by matl or expectanyone to matl-orderhls ctrlld out across thecountry. Wewtll expectto tr:avel to meet lnterested fandres or haire them travel

don't

see

tomeetus.

MECHAMC AT

15

FogeJenlclns (P'l) sentus

aqgoJa

letter slle urde toJerry Mhb' oJ tle NA7JOIf1|L @ALITION OF N:IERNATNE COMMUNITY

ercrpts:

*H@I-9, How

ote

sne

Ahn ( f 5) ulon the Juntor Champlonshlp forhts Go-Ikrtclub, He likes betngawlnner

and feels he accompltshed somethfng. As tn errerythln{of thls natur€, ho$t6rer, wlnntng was onlv the uo of the lc=berA. If I had known howmrictr heriould harrc learned fr,omtheGoKart experlencr, I would not have satd the phrasei'over my dead body'' so often.

-

Ttremechanlcaleducaflonwasterrlflc. Alanand our neighbordtd engtnework after Atan tmk the l(art apart lastwlnter. Fred (netghbor) also attended many races as "Eng[ne Man" - dlscusslng such thtngs as carburetors, throttle, alr temperahrre, octane, and otherthlnes r€lated to tnterrral combusdon en-$nes. The frame was strtpped, dtpped and repalnted 0 patnt); brakes, stiiring, whe6b, axels all reassembled, mostly by Alan, before the used Kartwas

readvforractnp. i fraa soH-tnycarwtth the large trunk and bousht a smaller one so we now had to flnd a trilerto haul the Kart to races. After searchtng Indianapolls for a used one, we ordered a lift from Ctrtcago' The rest of the

as

well. He also realizes how

*udh

-on{ t}tr" hobby takes and has to earn tt himself Financing and banldng have taken on new meaning to hirrt. I have learned alot too. Alan is Painting a new plch:r€ of trtmself. He has always seemd sensltfue and dellcate and rather passlrrc. He ls not delicate nor too passive now. He is able to irnrolveotheradults in his workwtthgood results and able to accompltsh his Aoals. He is sdll not that interested ln otlier people's goals and oblecilrrcs for hirn- The more I think about thi.tatutude the more r€asonablelt seems. Much of our fall was also sPent givlng nature tours to schoolctrtldren fromaround the state. We stgyred onas NatureWalk volunteers at Eagfe Club Park Nature Center. Aftertratntng, Alan and I took groups of lo12

forthls.. We

famtly and the rest of the neighborhood became trlnlved tn putttngthe traller together. Brcn lfyou don t need a tmiler, this isworth the moneyforallyou learn about assembly, folloudng lnstrucflons, electrlcal wirtnA uslng tools, etc. tirts has also gven Alan a lot of "people" orperlenc.e. He has organtzed everything - not wfthoutfault - but atleasthe has a chance to plan and see itrpork. He has seen the results of

children ondesignated tratlswlth the

purpose ofexposure to and involvementw'ith lhe natural forest erMronment. Alan accompanied me and helped with the group mostolthe time. The dilectorthought hewas tooyoung to go alonebecause wewere dealing wtth groups that pald ficr the tours. But hewas lrwolved and trelpful.

TEENS PROTEST

POLLUTION IDR/ In GUaS # 5O, un qtated aneteerpt Nathan, s W FRF,E fO TEACH fftlgrim Fess, 1 9&t) a&olf t@ns in an alternattue *d. wla ran a orswrlrlr- atd sqrtu. Herd s arotler gd storyfivn tlv

JrunJe

d<

afu.rt gsng paple use;fttlunrk:

d&g tnportatf

and

One fall errenlng tn l97l several teenagers rpent forabtcycle rtde tn theirSt. Paul nelghborhood. They had no idea ttrat

thelrerrenlng exercisewould produce a threeyear struggle, seircral maJor technological breakthroughs and a change in the way 4O youngsters vletd themselves. -

drreyoungwomannodcedaverybad

odor, wtrtch seemed to be coming from a paper Dlant. Th€ drls mentloned the smell to their hrents wlien they returned home. One parent explatned that thls had been a problem in the netghborhood for many years. The girls rcalzed tlnt they bad not noflced the odor before. "Perhaps lfs becausewe're taking an ecologr class," one sald. "\ile may be more

awarenow." The rrext day the shrdents rnendoned

thelr dtsc.overy tn class. They talked about polludon and what to do wlth tt. Part of the ieache/s expectadons rpere that the class

partlcipantswould notlust read and talk

iU"rrt6""t"gf, butrpould dso try

to do

something to lmprove their local

envlronmenl

...Shrdents were dlvlded overwhether arrythtngcould or shouldbedone about the od6r. T?rcv had studled envlronmental "tradeolfsl' and learned that somedmes factorles were closed ratlrer than retooled. Soreral speakers orplalned to the shrdents thatcleaner airand water is exPenslve. Students discorrcred that Polluuon control GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #56


29 elforts can resultln layolls ormon€ydfi/ertd from increased plant elflclency. Nerrcrtheless, students began to lnvesflgate the tssue. They began by researching the State of Mtnnesota odor polludon laws. They dtscovered tlrat the state used a "smell test" tn u'htdr atr alleged to be polluted was combinedwlth "clean" alr. The amount of unpolluted air added to the dlrty air depended on the area's zontng, For e:rample, ln a residentlal area, one cublc foot ofcleanairwas added to onecubic footof polluted alr. In an industrlal area" the polluted atrwould be diluted by three or four cubic feet ofclean air. An odor par el smelled tfre results. If an unusual smellwas obvious to the panel, the source of tlre smell was requlred to eliminate tt. Studentswere surprlsed at the

unsophisticated nature of thls law. They determined to ffnd outmorea.bout odor pollutlon, and went to a Law Llbrary to contnue thelr research. The youngsters summarized the odor polluflon laws of Mnnesota and the other 49 states, Thentheybegan to call the companythey suspected was prtmarlty responslble for the odor. Students phoned for several weeks, trying to arrange an appolntrrrnl The company offictals kept putdng them off. There may have been some mts c$rnmunlcatloc c.ompany offlclals Later explxned they thought tlre shrdentswanted a plant tour, wtrich thry were preparlng but hadn t completed. The students tnslsted that theywanted to talk about odor:s comlng from the plant After betng rebulH by company olllcials, the students called the SL Paul Polludon ControlAgency. An olfidal there enplained that the agency dtd not have enough stalf to chech out all complalnts. He also told the shrdents they were tlie llrst to complarin

abouttheodor. The youngsters were dtscouraged. They had not o<pected a rebuff from the Pollution Control Agency. They met wtth a local publtc lnterest group attomeywho su€EFsted that they start a pedtlon, asldng for an lrwesflgatlon of the odors. ltrey collected several hundred names tn tl.e nelghborhood. In the proccss, they learned a good deal about

economlc lnflmldadon. Many owrrers of small business, such as barber shops, drug stores and restaurants, told the lrdds they agreedwith the pettdonbutdldn twant to slgn ltbecause they feared a loes ofbuslness from the large company. One youngster was readlng the local newspa.perand sawa rroflce abouta legislative heartng on polludon; the students w€nt to the headng and explalned thelr experiences. The legislators' atHfu de seemed to be, "Aren't those liilds cutel" Hourever, a newspaperreporterat tlre hearlng sensed a good story. He asked if thrywould be willing to hanre thelr names ln the newspa.per and get some publtctty about the campatgn. The shrdents and their teacher agreed. They reported their conversaflon to the attomey, who was enthusiasdc. "Sorrrcthtng may start to happen now, " he told them. Several days later a front page story appearcd. The reporternoted that the area ln quesflon was somedmes called "the armpit of St. Paul." Some of the story's c.omrnentswere rweallng. The pollutlon controlbureau clrtef satd his agencywas plannlngto lnvesflgate the shrdents' complaint withne a week. The company spokesperson derded knowtng anything about the students' concsns. The company also denied produdng any obJecflonable odor. Theardcle quoted the oompany representattrrc's promise that the GROWINC WTTHOUT SCHOOIf,NG #56

students qrould be lnvtted fora tour\rcry soon. The classwas ecstatlcl ...Tlrtngs bappened qulckly for awldle. The lnspecflonswerc rnade ard several companles (tncludtrqg the one students suspected) were found to be tn vtoladon of the pollutlon standard. Each of the three compardeswas ordered to derrclop a compltanc= plan. The companles asked for up to I 8 months to make lmororrcments. The l8 months stretched out to 24. Apparently therewere rxr e'sy soluflons to the lidnds ofodors the papercompanywall producfng. Hnally, howerrcr, the company dtd irnstall the equlpment, wtrlch worked reasonably well. Students wer€ tnvlted back to seewhat tlre companyhad donc. The corporadon's vlcr-prestdent thcn satd somethlng totally unexpected, "Ktds, urc're really pleased you pushed on thls one. Oh, I knowweurcren tvery happy serrcralyears ago." (Students had remtnded the oflclal of a conversafl on between the Supertntendent of Schools and the corporadon's presldent. Acrordtng to the Superlntendent, the bustnessman had demanded the shrdents stop harrasslng hts campany. He threatened to encouage hts workers tovote agatnst aborrd lssue lfthe proJecturasn t stopped. To hts credtt, the Superlntendent supported the project, told the comparSr ofrclal that the students were leamlng about democraqr, and that the compar5r should be more cooperatfueD The oftctal agreed that hts boss uras furlous about the orlgfnal newspaper arilcle. Houreler, he potnted out that the company

nowwalr getflng excellent press cov€rage.

Apparently the comparry's sclenflsts had derrcloped nanr technologr to reducc tlre odor, and people from throughout theworldwere callingto tnqufreabout lt. The companywas pleased and theofrcl,alwanted the students to

knowlL

FRIENDS THROUGH PEN.PAL CLIJB Stryhonle tuonfield. D anlel*luille

1 329 Blt;e ML Dr. PA 7 80 8, torlte s :

About the only good thfng that happened durlng my stay tn the publlc school systcm was IYS flnternationalYouth Servlce). tYS ts an organlzadon that matches Hds up from dllTerent countrles so tlrey can be pen-pals. In German class, my classrnates and I were told that, for 85 cents, we could have a pen-pal from ar5l countrynE wanted, exc"ept communlst countrles [SS: tt's notlmposstble to wrlte to chtldren ln these countrles - tlre Gtngolds (CA) can connect Sovlet and American pen-palsl. I pfcked Germarry. ,4.s tt turned out, I ltked my new pen-pal very much and enJoyed wrldng to her. When I left school I had morettmetowrltetoherand more tlme to learn about Germany and tts people. The answersl dldn't nnd hbooks I gotfrom SonJa, my pen-pal. Wrtdng to SonJa has made me reallze that tlrere are real peoph tnother parts of the world wtth real feeltngs and personalldes. More stullhappens orrcr there than poltdcal happerrtngs. There are real, llve people lMng normal llrrcs orrcr there. I learn how they lfve, what they eat what thetr hobbles are, thelr habtts. Rght after my famtly moved to another school dlstrtct so we could homeschool, I recetved a letter and an appllcatton form from [YS. I was thrtlledl Now my slster, Shart, who had beenJealous because I had a pen-pal and she dtdn t, could harc pen-pals

too. We each ordered four pen-pals. TWo of mtneddn twrtteback arrd I'mwrldng IYS for

replacernents (thafs IYlS's pollcy). My Srst pen-pal, w*rom I have been wdtfngto for threeycar:n ffru/, lrMted me over to Germany, the countqr she llrrcs ln. I'm afratd she orpects rrr to hop on the next plane, though (most of my pen-pals tend to thlnk all Amertcans are rolltng in dougtf . My slste/s Fr€nch pen-palasked herto go to DtsneyWorld so she could send her a few frree

postcardsl In orderto apply fora pen-pal, you must be lO-2O years of age. Remember that lfyou are young, ctrlldren of the same age tn nonEngllsh-speaktng countrtes mlght not have learned Engllsh fluentlyyet. SonJawas I 2 whenwe started wrtflng to each other. Her sentenceg were a ltttle choppy but I could understand her. Stcphanb sags that she has setserd. es&a apflbalb{onns qt lud, arrl she ls ofertg ttcm to ottgore ulo serds ler a SASE, Yal can ^t so wdte dbaflg to INIERIV/TIIOALqL YO{,]TH SEFI'/ICE. PB 1 25 SF- 2O

1O

l,Twleu Flnlotd-

TRAVELING MUSICIANS Dpug

ard H derc Van M arcn wdte :

We wlll be trarcltng frrom Cobrado to NewYork Clty and back thts surmrer on a muslc tour. We are avatlabb to arqr honrscholtng group thatunuld llke to have us corneto tlrelrtown and do ourchlldren's prograrn No group ts too small, and lfipe are ggtngto be tn ttlattonn anyurayu,e'd lorcto connect wlth thern Therewlll be acost butwe

wlllumrkwlth thegroup. We d€clded tofocus our tour on the chtldren's market thls year as we are rebaslrqg a cldldren's album ln

June

and so that our ldds, Sterra (8) and Sequola (5) can tr.'arrclwtth us and sperd ttrrre ln the llbrary or at the museum on thelr onrn, wblle nrc perform. Peopb can ontact us at 8929 Apache Da Beulah CO I 1023.

HELPING MCARAGUANS FtotnVhf,erne Edttlprtds, 872 b.

Rd *92,

MopleHaInMN55359:

Errcryone has lreard ofproblems tn Ntcaragua and netghbortng countrles tn Central Arrrrlca- Wtrat rrnst people do not know ts that ther€ arc mafly peoplewho harrc Iled from theirhomes ard are Uvhgfn dreadfirl condldons ln refugee camps ln Honduras. We belong to a netrvork ofpeople, based ln Mlnneapolfsbut nptdly spreadtng to all areas ofNorthAmertca who areumr*tng to provldesome help forthese unfortunate people. The ntce partofourproJectts thatany famlly here can "adopt" a family tn tlre camp ard packaboxofthlngs for thern My turc daughters each "adopted" a famtly of thelrown and had endless fun sbopptng at garage sales for cbthes, toys etc. for "thel/' hmilies. We all learned a lot about these peoph and thelr country. If arryone ls tnterested I uould be happy to supply details. I wlllJust mendon thatwe tqr to stay clearof the pollflcal lssues alr ourmaln almls to atd the people tn need, about naturc, ecology, adventure, language, historyr math, space. world oroblcms & morc.

ALL AGES. ALL SITUATIONS New, expanded catalog, 25f I


30 16) PO Box 755 MlcanopyFl 32667: darhg, mlrnala, dolb :- Hopc BROOI(S -Au&VCRIDER (Z 1524 Dcbrc Dr, PlenoTK75o7a; batlct drawkg. gadcntng CAIIIPBEXI, RR l. Sttc 42, Udtc 2. Bl*k Cleck, - BC. CAI{ADA" VOR ICO: Jocl (12)

RESOURCES & RECOMMENDATIONS pafnflng, drawlng crrarnlcs, weavlng, sculptlng, urlflng, forefgn languages,

SOI]RCE OF NOTBBOOKS We sflll don t knourwhere to get "halfruled notebooks" (GU/S #54, p. l9), but GIVS

readerChrts Reelflpped us offabout somethlng strnilar. ZAM BLOSERCO. (PO Box 16764, Columbus oH /8216; 614-486O22 l) makes a ldnd of pa.perwtth the top half blank and the bottom part ruled. Tte llnes appear on both stdes of t}re large I 2x I 8" sheets, so lfyou wanted you could fold one or more sheets together, perhaps wtth a constnrctton pa.per cover, to make your own books. The qualfty of pa.per ts the mantla nenrsprtnt often found ln classrooms. Cost ts $3.5O for a half ream (25O sheets), plus lO96 shtppfng chargq order # I4OO9O,

Story-wrttlng pa.per." Pa5rment must accompany orders under $ I 5. - DR '

Amerlcan Slgn l-anguage, ballet and vole. They offer lndhrldual lessons tn muslcal

lnstmments $ou need lour onn encept for planos) and salltng, ard theyharcabunchof courses on computers, Thereare acdvldes fordrtldrert wtrlch they can talre part ln or not" lots of ldds hang outwtth thetrfarntlles and go to "adulf' classes. The maln drauback ts t}le cost Houslng ts pretty expensfirc, tbough rnaybe no wots€ than most sumrner resorts. There sflll are a fenr old rather prlmlthrc rwrntng houses at lowcost and some shared-bath hotel rooms. Most people rent houses orapartnents and those sleep a lot ofpeople. Farnilles often shar€. there ar€ other bw-cost places run by

varlous churchee. To come ln to Chautauquayou must bave flckeL It endtlesyou to admteslons to all lectures arvd concerta. You have to payfor each day 1ou stay here (durtng tlre season) whetheryou take part tn anythlng or not. If you buy the flclret before the season starts, lt only costs balf as much. For rnore

mustc, tilcyclcs, swlnghtg E RIEMAN. 3S{Ett Gr. So. Ovcrland, Jullan CA 9rlB6: Ellzabcth (l f ) horscs, rcadhrg, srl-' & Anlrlc (q bugF, wrtdng.

urlrnals: John (7 toob, mahng thtgs, car!,

Merfc BARR (lOl 2jl Madlon Arrc, Wa&cffcld MA 01880: gmnastlcs. math, antnab

CATALOG INFORMATION A copy of our latcet cvmplcte catalq GWSI #5t1. To obt*r a scparatc copy, scrd a

bng SAS wlth tflo stdnps. Wc wrll pay $2 tr credlt foruscd coplca (ln good cvrnildonl ofJohn Holt's whatDl Ib Moday?

ln

On rcqrcst, wcwlll photocory and mall thc GWS revlcw of arry ltcrn ln orr catalog, Scnd 5O cqrts

phrsaStASE forqrc; add 25csrts

fccadt addttbnal.

a gate

USEFIJL CATALOG Wendy Reinlnger [D) recommends the Mlchael Olaf Montessort Shop etalog(4284 GilbertSt, Oakland CA946l l), saldng, "There are some wonderful books and rnaterlals anallable: Usbome books on marqr toptcs (farrorltes at our house), rnodel dlnosaurs to scale, fosslls, rock and shell collectlons, Ladybld readers - all top qualttyand fatrly

tnformatton, wrtte Chautauqua Insfltuflon, C hautauqua NY | 4722 : 7 16- 357 - 6.200.

Hcre

cc somcwaysyou

In llrae wtth the ldea ofglrdng ldds real

Brrsh

has

a

$25 carpet sweeperwlth a four-sectbn handle. Flernorrc one secflonandyou harrc a real 7-by-9-tnch srceperwlth actrlld-stze handle. (Foratoddler, tno secdons mlghtbe better.) Ifs small, butfarfrrombelngatoy. It ptcks up ourlrlshSette/s halrs, dlnner cnrmbs, etc. wlth ease. Another real tool our dauglrter loves ls a cheap steel tape rrrcasure ($ I at our favortte flea market). On Chrtstrnas day, she rrrcasured errcrythlr4 from a l -lrrchtall teddy bear tbat ltves tn her dollhouse to her tudn bed. Wewrote down some of the rneasurements. She's also enJoytng a 2-cuP rneasurlng cup that v/as free lnstde a bag of

dogfood.

INTERESTING VILLAGE Lttda Mnlan (NY) utote to suggest thot GWS rwders n{ght eqlq Chautauqua. NY, a

surrurler resort otfertg letue s, daflg @ruerts, ondc&asses fn art nus|c atddronu:

Chautauqua tnsdhrtlon ls a selfcontalned campus-vlllagp. The summer

lateJurc

to late season ls nlneweeks, frrom August. Serrcral thousand people are here at

anvorr€flnre. - Each mornlng has alecture tn the SOOOseatwooden amphltheater. Past lecturers were Ftances Moore Lappe and Catbedne Bateson (Margarct Mead's daughter). Each anenlng there's a conc=rt - ttrc professtonal symphorry orchestraperforms three tlmes a weck, the college-agie orchestra once. The rehearsals areopento thepublicand fyou slt ln the chotr loft of the amphttheateryou can hear tlre corrducto/s comments, I]rere are classes all surnrner, ln

a

hrdcxed; ey "school attcrdancc" u "cdr.rca6on. compulsory." r 8 statcs have rcvlscd thdr lronrc cducadon bss strcc l9&l so clrcck thc rccerrt stahrtc drangcs. Wc havc plntc{ (rsummald thcsc ncs larpg ln our back ls$rcs. 2) Ask thc state dcpartmerrt ofeducadon for

arry larc crqulatlons p€rtalrthg to homcschoolrrg and/or starthg a prlvatc etrool. In somc statcs (pctlcularb C.A IL, IN, I(Y) thcrc arc farrcgulaflons concecnlngprtvatc schools and so

you can

-ll

yorrrhqnc a*hool.

Ifyorr are corrc<ncd about mrcafingyour namc arrd addr,css to thc statc. do thrs througlr a frlcrd. 3) Contact statc orlocal homcschoollrg groupe. Thls llstuas last prfirtcd tn GWS #54, and ls updatcd ard sold *paratcly fc $l as part of our 'Homcachootrg Rcsourcc LlEt." Somc groupo harrc peparcd handbooks orguldcllncs on lcgal mattcrs. 4f Contact oth€r famllcs llstcd tn our Dhec'tory. Hoxcrrcf,, thcymaysuggestyou do somc of thc abonc stcpo yorr*lf, 5) Ingcncral. ttls not wlsc to

pur thc

local school

startbyash4

dlstdct thcy usuatry don't Lrpw

bwclthcr, Bcttcr

to gathcf, thc

hcts first

qt

thosc ll,stcdbclotp. Tobc lrstcd, ocrd namc, age, I tlcar addrcEs. ard l -3 wotds ort tntcf,cEls muslc, CI.OTfER (61 I l3tt Bewcr Rd, Algcr MI,f86l0; math, ffsh : Kata For$ET[ ( lOl 6,fO6 walnut St, Balttnone MD 2f 2O7; rcadlng, stnglrry, gnnnesdca XJRCHIIAUSEN, 64 14 Rt 66, CoDcord l\r'P OH 4O77': Jasrrnln (Sl *ashdls, anknels, swtmmlng; Serah MAruRI Brycc (6) gamcs, sports. occan €) f 7650 Hc/y 238, Grantr Fass- OR9O627 Ently SITAICro ( l2l KD 2 W. 2AL Schoharlc- ltlY

Jud0t HURT 95672 knlglrts, dkrcaus, space (f O Rt f Bon 454-4 Abtlcrrc TX TSOI - ; bascball.

Bd

@e lwz ryrcre u*h

atffats" otd. ae ullltrg

u*oqehMd-

@

OE JdlaDtng

crres,prd, rtfrr oders

Phlslel llrrdlcaPe: My'rnavogcl arrd Saunry l9ol Batcr St, Laurcncc KS 6dN4

Scott.

S|r{!c Partnts: Janet Hoftnan. 44 Barlcy Arrc. Patchoguc trlY I1772-*WcrrfryFladcrs, PO Bo:r 7854. RcadhgPA l9dXl -- Laura Prrbhatd, Bo:( a3a5, Or4crCltyOR97()4S -- Dcborah Phllllpo,

occartogrryhy- SaEh

93A.

,

,tooRaymondalcDr, S. FasadcrnCAglOg) --- PeulaWdker, Rt2 Boxga. Mdrtgomc{yChcck CA 9fl)65 -- D|arc Mcldctl, 3I3I Cty EE, Baileys HsborWI54204 -- ChrlsthrcWlllard. f ,$54 S.rtton f,h, Ssr Jocc CA 95124

ADDITIONS TO DIRECTORY Hcrc arc thc addttons ard dranges to thc hanrc rtcctrcd sbcc the last lssuc. GWS #54 has thc Glrnpbtc f 987 Dhectory. OurD[cctory Ir not a llst of all subscrlbcrs, but orrf of thooc u*ro ask b b tts,@d.. so that othcr GWS readers, c othcr trtcrcstcd pcodc. may get tn touch wfth thcm. Ifyouwould tkc to bc hrcludcd, pleasescrd thc crrtryfonn ora&r5card (orrc famlly

Ilr€ctoryw€

pcrcardf. Wc prlnt b{rdrge@s of drlldnn, rrct agcs. Ifrre

tf a nsmc tn a GWS *ory ls follorcd by an abbrcrdratfon rn pucnthcscs, that pcrson ls ln thc

Ilrectory (chcckhcre crd tn #54 & *55) . l/e are hapry to forward mdl to thoscxthosc

addrcss

arc not rn thc Dhcctory. Mart thc @tslde of thc crnrclopcwtth namc/dcscrrp6on, f$uc. and

pagenunbcr. \Ifherryou scrd us an addrcss drangc fora subocrlptton, pleascrernlrrd uslfyou rc tn thc Dlrjcctory. so wc can chargc tt hcrc, too.

dollhous. darrclr4g:- Matthcrr

JEFFREY (q 286Pcaceful GadcnWay, RcscucCA

Star Rt

(draqgc)

maltngad&cs.

Chlldrcl rrndng Fn-Fb should wrltc to

grmnastlcs,

4$tll

Spattkr. 460 S. Maln St,

-- Rayl(nnnm. FO Bo:r 713.

Pleasc tcllua tfyou*ould rathcrharcyour phorr rumbcr and twn lfetcd lnstad ofyour

PEN.PALS

hor:scs,

O

madc amlstakc w?rcn cornrcrtrngyor.rrchlld's agc to blrthycar. flce let us trE\f, .

yourwn.-DR

l2l5Z

AndorrcrMAol8f

Tllclsc

prbllc llbrary orlawllbrary (c.ourthousc, lryschool, ctc.l teus are

Araderwdtes:

Ccrufo d Tcadtcrs Wllllrry to Hclp Horncschoolcrs: Wcrdy

Hclpfullawvcr: Cblre Bencdlct, PO Bo:( 819. Snmcsport LA 71369-0819 (drange)

can ffnd out thc lcgal

sltuadon lnJDurstatc. l) Iaok up the lawpusclf, ln

REAL TOOLS

ADDITIONS TO RESOURCES

Houghton MI

HOW TO GET STARTED

prtced."

tools wienever posslble, Ftrller

wrfttrg, rcadog, drawbg; Hdd (f f ) wrld-hugcr, ftcnds, ar! Darccy 19 hcscs,bablcE,ThlrdWorld; 'ftoy(8) sefinmklg. shecp, urlcoms; vlrgkla(6)

FOLLOCK

(?

Dururd WI 5473e dolls, boots. srt

Al;

:

Dotflc IilNIfl.STLJHUG &

Fnrik

t.llilG (Danld/n, Karl/ 8f2l T6Caryllr, Aubum 36880 GeIy & Bca RECIOR (Boo/78,

AZ

-

GROII'ING WTII{OUT SCHOOLING #56


3l ElXott/8O) FCI Bot 36i1, Cevc Crcck 85ggf E GIu|e W|LLIAMS. ARMCACOMMUMfi SGIOOL FO

Bc24.Artlnca8560l cA IroRlE @Pa 9{O@

&

l4f -- chrb

HIBBEFII.l64AErnrddc Rd, Mor.rntevtcw 94043

D[e

PAGET A B|ll SEEIflNS Qsd,c | 7 e,

Chslc / 41 PO Bpn223, Phllo *t466 Laurcl/a0, -

s

c@

l(ay PREIT &

IIAWKRIDGE

6ny/ef

.

Brandon/84 I 6 Camclbec& Ct, Pbasant fill 94523 Dm & C.[ tOUIg (ZPs to 94(XX)) -Bootc OIGEFE (Rrhel/?9. Ibthcda/80, carolhtc/84fs:tgLawSt. San Dcgo 9lf 09 khagc) Dcnnts & MaIIyTOUCHSTONE [rao/7 l, Bccty/7g. sdah/8f, Maryl8q 85f I.ancc/7s, Vcncda Arrc. Vcotc'c

fl Il9 I

elcxandcr & LlDda SCf,IR/inER

6X'

lllll

(Omar/?g, Noah lgz,Lcrlalf34ll ttSMowncot Rd, Covcntry06238 CHRISTIAN HERTf, AGE LIBERIY DE ACAf,,EIt'ff. nD r, Box 69rr, Clayt@ f SSg HOMESCHOOLERS OF LEE COUNTY. rl, 841 f Chartcr Chrb ctrclc, lb. 12O6. Ft. It'fycrs 3TBO7 OAE Jolm & Vlddc FOC,IIR 0rlcffsEa/zg'

-

--

Mtchcl/80),()Z Mrmea Tlrrace' Woodstock 30l8a It f att & Dlanc JOHNSON [lodsy/8rl -ItIa'*.tU, t'lK',lsd 14ro Bqr*podTlace. Ac*cth Sof Ol

a

Glcrrn&RordcrYOUlrIG

(wtlltstt/8l.

Alcc/89 f 42O Shcnta Oak frr, lhcross 3fi)93

IL-

Karcn GREENBERG & GcosSc

w[LfAMS (Gattr/&l) 5Ol Eson' Carbondalc 6290r (dnnge)

|tf

ffldroleo/8f -

DlaDa & J6.?h ) RR f Bot( I I I,

LE{R

Mary

&MarkvA{DOREN [fdcrr/8S, RFD I Bot( 78OO' Fafficld 04S17'9738

(changE)

l0z Eltc & Gall BAER LII -- Rch$oth 0t276[l Olylcs/7g) &Ellzabcth CarpcntcrSt. Fatrk/8$ 6r -Jcff cIDDltiKiS (Scah/?g. Ardc/80, Clos Rd, Wcst Warehar 02576 bhdgc) Bcatrlc€ MEDEIROS. S.t' MASS. HOME EDUCAIORSI SUPPCIRTGROLJP. 146 lrvktgst, Fdl SPRIIIII.ER,,tf60 S. Maln Rrrrcr0llT?lt --WcrdyNancy $/AI-SH & Jakc St, Ardortcf Ol6lO - l,Msrthew I T7l 5 Fa)'cttc SIEIVART Ucremy/7

Perk,Cdnhdgc()ZlfS

Il

-

-

Rates: 7O?/trcrd. $l/word boldhcc" $5 mtnlrnum. Pbasc tcll thcsc folksyou saw thcadtnGWS.

457Gt(change) PA Cluls & Jan BARLOTil 0Uatthcd78, Df:sdn/8q - RD 2 Box 391, MwtcY 17756 :L*rtrrce &Jardc LEVINE (Gabclle,/7o, Mathcs/72, Samucl/&l) BITAI OI{R, 7f 6 Grcerilcaf f}r, Moruocvlllc f 5f 46 E nlank & Mcf,cdth PAFENIE Dantcl/8o. Josc"h/82, Esth€t/8$ 725 S. Braddock Ave, PlttSurgh I 542 f -34f 7 (drangc)

ARTS IN RESIDENCE: Monthly art ncr*:slettcr:

E

:-

Ii s

John & Jul|c ANDERSTON Frlc/?9, I e,,Btrlur,lEtt) Rt 2 Bo( 6n, Rcd WtDg 53066 FAII{IIIES NIIRTIJRIITG LIFELOIiIG

I^EARNERS, 42Sa r,hry & Ed RYAI{

S., Edba 5541 6 | 77' Fn / 7E, Arn:r- |

LymAvr.

(tffi

John/E2, trflctrohs/84,

-= ffi

l75.Fgjn,cU77, Erkh/80'Abtggil/83, ArEcEtzabc0r/84| 346AtlandcArrc.. Rcd

Dcnl*

RALTCH Flans

+

Gordy & Maurecn LEWIS (Scan,/8 f ' W./UI 172-B Ardlkry Iro'P. Ft. Sam Houston 73234 -- Judy & krry McIlfi IAN lRtua | 7 2, Hcatlrcr/7$ I 38 I 3 ParksfE Woodt, Ssr Antordo

Tf,

IT s

Roscanc BL(rcM @rlka/69,

- 6f Patrlck,/78) Jehue/78,

f Robcrtq WaEhhgton 63(x)o

(Erln/8o,-Noah/8$ Rt f Bo:( 5,o, Lovtrgston 229a9 (drange) Andrca & IGrl I(EU-ER tretra/8{l' Thanc/8$- Rt f Bo:r$A.L&rdcn22642

. WA€ candy' & Mlkc JENMNGS 0.arrlc/74. Chuck & Grcta/821 R5 Box 34l,Vashqr 94125 - / 77' JrchWOOD {ckrdy 1712, Jolml 7i,Brr,ky

Sardy & Hal PALJIIiON (Strl/7g, I('m/831 10968 35i Avc. EdmontonT6t 2Vg (dtangc) llC E Rdad & Ibthcdnc CAIttPtsELL 6tor;l| 7 4, r{rc,ilr | 25, oattgy | 7 7, Ttwy/7g, rnrgrrn/8o' Hays/S2. Ryan/84 RR f , S|tc,12, Unlt2. Blck ltarcus & Jarl HUNT Crrck VOR ICO

E

Jody BROwlrI

&Jln

Brook

SIJTIJFF

C*y/8(), Jclmlc/8s) 78f 5 Runrrg Iclry FARAONE' Clay l3(Xl (cheogd

-

GROWING WIIIIOUT SCH@LING #56

HOIII TO STOCK A gI.IAUTY HOME UBRARY INEXPENSMLYT rs Packcd wlth good ldroq for buyirgrrrr and uscd books tncxpcrntvely. $3.5O ($3.71 CAresldcnts). Chcck/money ordcr/SASE for muc tnfo to Bh.rcstocbrrgPr,ess. PF. PO Box lol4, Placcrvlllc CA95667

Wantcd: Farcrrts' accounts of thelr usc of mmputcrs tr homcschootrg. Bart Ptsha, Ccnter forApplied Spcctal Tcchrrcbgr. Salcm MA Ol97O (61 7) 845-

8735 The Ccntcr forApphcdTcclrrclogr offcrs a range of

Ifyouwould tkc to bc lrEludcd ht thcllhccto4rand hwe rrct1rct told us, sand tn thls fotm, oruse a poetcard or&r5 crd (orrly urc farntlypcr cad).

O4anlzadon (orrly lf addrcss b samc as famlly): Childrcrr. Namcs/Btrthyears:

Address:

Itat'c & ft,ed CAVAII) 0{o€h | 741 17' lfJ Clada MeDERMOTT AAlva Ct,- Edbm 0AAl7 $rnburst Irr' ldc/7l, Chatc l73,Jotrrkl75l3 SI$qN, 20 Pleatssayo8Ss.f (dlengd -.fanc I{rnllwood Dr, Irvhrgctor oztxl9

yow

OAII/IITA:

Aa1a-

Cohnhrs 5Sl9

Tom & Fer8e LLJSSIIER (Bctlrany/8f ' cabrlcl/83, Calsb/86) FO Box 3f 7. HoHcrDcss (Xp45 (dtangc) R*hclWIUlAMS pcsslca/8z) -I Z) Auetln St, Pdtsmouth G3EOI (chd|ge)

IIY

ACADEIIf,Y: K- 12 Teach

Educatfonal, sclf-cqtatncd. sclf-c'orrecttn€1, minl' lcasorn on casscttcs.'Thc Llsteningleamc/' 5OO Itbrth Rd. Fcrrton Ml 484:I)

E. 32 12 36th Arrc., SPokanc 99:123

(change)

iE --

lC;oty | 7A,

homcstcadrg. SASE to Bakcr.Jamlcsn. 804 Wdhcr, Nrycrvllb lL 60540 (Kudrnc-Wcstcrman)

LMNG HERITAGE ACADEIilY, D€Pt. G2, PO Bot( 610589. D/FwArrport, fi 75261-o58[l

Elhr fflCHE[. 0tdady/76,

lfiarla/8O) Bor g(X|,

ae starttnglanrral latd co-opcratlve ncar Madlson WI. Asupporttvc awbonmcnt foradults & childrt<r to sherGwo,rt, play, homcschoolng& Wc

chlld at homc. fllagrmtlcally sclf-prtscrlbcd, sclfcorrtahcd, scU-lrrstrucdonal. conttnuous Progres o-rrrlcrrhrm, hlgh chlarcrncnt rcsults, IErmanent reco'rds kcpt, dploma lssued , low tuluon t'ates.

Adults:

GiEr/8S 67$ GalPh Blvd'

Stcvc &

dflst'sblogs, drnc lhrc, proJccts. Sub-$lSyr. Arme Carnpbclt , 235 ksadcna, T\rsttn CA 91680

L|-NG HERIXAGE

ZcUsVAMEN BERG & Gary RODES

79

ratcs (314) rraT-OlA4'

97339.

VA-- Suzarrrr &John F RIEDRICHS ldlrtp,l7&, J*,/8O, lra/&l) Rt g Box 2Of , Iadrgton 244fi -- HOME SGIOOL LEGAL DEF'EIYSE ASSOCIAIION. FO Bo:< 95O, Grcat Falls 22066 (char{p) llna & Fatrlc& HUGHEI-COMMERS

Tcrn,l

forrnt.

TEACHYOUR CIIILD TO READW/PI{OMCS Complctc home manr:al. Rulcs ocplalrcd/word llsts. $5.75. Rardall, FOB 1423-GWS. C,owallts, Orqon

Llon 17356

'

ExcclddSA3SI

ag

Shrrr

RDwARDYOURl(DSFlcrldaDlsrrgrCondo

SlecF dx. wa.shcr/drycr, pool, tcnnts court, speclal

ENTRY FORIu F|OR DIRECTORY

Howhton4S931 (cllangFl

dN

Etzabcth

WANT ADS

E MEt

-

713'

:

& Dolly FISIIER (Cory I 7 5, Atrdrty/El, Stcfany/84 I I 70 Tlrmcr Hacc' Xcnla Dan & wcody'M[l,ER 45385 (cltenge) (DcGk/72, RAchcl | 74,Km lT6,li|ctssa/78, Justln/8 I , Stcv€n/84) 559 Htghmcadows Vllage Dr' Jtm & Katc IIALLY (Narrcy/7s. Fowcll4{n65 Rd. hrncroy l/.ay / TT,Paty/8r) S, r 70 49,6 r 5

Ray XRUMM, COPPER C0UNTRY

EDT CAIIONCOOPERAIT\IE, PCI Box

(chagcl

Anna/Sf , Bcrr/84) RR f I, HnlawVOG zJO

Chdlottc(8f45

Etsc MAIIIDEX. & Joc ANIHOIIIY Xf - Dsvd/8z} MLJRR IT rcAD AIYNEX {Serah/7g, SCXiOOL 6f 5HcadhyAtrc, Lcrlrgtontlt)508 IE -- Pat & Blll CREIGTIIION ttcsslce/8f , Mark Emma/84) RR I Bo(35, Dccrrlc (X627 &Ttlsh IffCIA (Auttmn/8ttl FO Bo:( 55, MAII\E HOME STLTDY Chcrryndd Od622 ASSOCIAIION, RD-#4 Bo( 55OO, Farmlngton 04938

7A3

Ethos

MACDOIiIALD &MaTkJLJIGS (Aaron l7A, Is'a,rcs, Shatna/8s) Ccrrcral Dcllrrcr5l, Gray CteckVOB ISO rsck & Lhda MORRIS (IGtla/7e' E,mrly / 79'

(Dorlsmc/8O, Alcxandcr/84) RR 2 Box 29O6' -

461 65

VlctrlaVgA

4

Ihthy BERRY & Mat* HELLER olt tErtr/81, -Shamm/86) S7 Hcldclbcqg. Tolcdo

Vl

(clungE)

-Greta/86)

Pl.

782,f9-f822 (changd

Fetrt/80.

Udth Salcm

Uasdr,/8f l UCTIORIAHOMESCHOOLERS,

WESIICHESIER HOMESCHOOLER ORGANIZAfiON. 207 DratcArrc.. Ncw Rochdlc f O8(}5 Dcc & Patrtcla McCONNELL RD2 Box f36. ffianrsvllh {Radrel/73,Amy/751 13661 Peula & Bnnt Hr'ffI-Ef (A[cc IfC Sprtrg/an) - PC) Box I 73, Barnardsltll/c 2A7@

Ilarrc bcst kt Dhcctorybcfore: Ycs tf thle

b

addrcEs change,

I\b

whatwas pt:rrlous statc: -


32 ptrrots who ugc, c *ould hkc to usc computcrs lnhomcschoolng, Indilvldual ctxrsrltadon and pareot clascs arc offcrcd to address acadcndc and €ftctlvcgoalB ofshdccrta

thc

borrus lgsuc. Rcnanal ratcs arc thc samc as forrrw subecrtpdorrs: $2O for 6lssucs. $36 for 12 lsucs, $48 fc lS lss-rca.

scrvlclcs to

wtth orwlthout spcdal Dccdc. Contact Bart Pfsln,

WHEN YOU WRITE US

=3Wr"ol9l2::1:15_

Plcasc - (f) Put scparatc ltcnrs ofbuslness on scparatc shccts ofpapcr. (2) hrtyourrrame and addrcss at thc to,p ofcach lcttcr, (3) lfyou ask qucsdons, cnclooc a sclf-addresscd stampcd crrvclopc. (4) Tcllus lf it's OK to publtshyor.nlcttcr, and uihcthcc to uc yor.r rramc wlth thc story. Wc edtt lettcc for spacc and darlty.

CREAIfVITf trotf,ojccts?Adprograrn for bqlnncrs of all agcs. SHORTAI\D S{IEET - lcarntrg whldr lsJust that, agcE 3-5. TEACHING GT IDES reallyusc thc potcrrnal of hmlly lcarntng. TEST WAlilT

PREPARAnON, good K-f 2 wORlGooKs. FREE CATAITG, sample gtrrldc lig. LEARMNG Af HoME Bo:< 27O-G56. Honaurnu tl *1726

DOENSofactMg/lcrnkgldcs arcund

monthlSr thcrnc. Sampk $f ,ycar$9. CrtattucLcandag Megadnc, Ftlst Floc, Box 957 Wrlgltstown tilt

08562-OSi7. THE FAI{ILY LEARNING CONNECTION, Blmonthly neneletter for homeschoollng famltcs. Samplc $2. orcyr. *l2,2yr.l%2,'ITilf,. D,ept G, FO Bo:K 12268. OLlaClty, OK 73157

tut6, S.nFlarrctso BryArca. Iharrc

Ivtath

cxpcrlcrrc, rcfocrrcce, srd

a

$f8lhr.hshddrt'shonrc.

Smah, (4fO

bve formathcmadcs.

&r.71PlH.

8tt ROSE RDCIPES, V..75

lO@1. San Flam{aco CA 941 2 l.

Bo:( 2

Arnandarratr

to tr:ade

6t{-812f

,

I(awasald, FC)

fcATTOPPftPhtllcs catds.

Scnd card numbcrs to 3f 4 Bryn MewrAvc, Bqm

MarrPAl90lO.

RENEWALS At thc

bottm

of thte page ts a form you can

usc

tortncw5lotrrsubocrtpflo. Plcaschdp usby

rtncwngca;y. How canlou tcllwhcnlorrsubscrtpdon o<plrcl? I.ook at thts sarnph labcl:

t2s4.5

fr,oe

SITBSCRIPTIONS $lb€crlpdons startwtth thc ncxttssuc publlshcd. Our crn:r€rrt retcs arc $2O for 6 tssucs, $36for 12 tssucs, !$48 for l8ls$:cs. GWSrs publtshcd arcry othcrmorrth. A slr4le lssuc costs 8:t.50. For all sube or ordcrs of GwS (not books) , plcasc scnd drcck ormoncyordcospa,yable to eauu:tttg WfthattScnoo&rO Forrtgn palDcots mustbc slthcr moncJl ordcrs tn US furde or drccks draum on US banks. We can't afford to acrtpt pcrsorral dteck^s on Carradlan accrr.rnts, even lf thcy have 'US frmds" wrltten on thcm. Or.rtsldc of North Amcrlca, add $lO perpar for aknrall (othenvlsc, allow 2-3 months for surfacemalll. BecL Lrucr: We strorgly rqgcyou to gct Orc backfssucs ofGWS, espcclaltylfpu plan to take your drlldrur out of school. Marry of the artlclcs art as uscful ard tmportant aswhcn thcyvitre prlntcd, and nrc do not plan to rcpcat thc lnformaflon ln thcrn. All back lssucs arc kc?t tn prlnL Or.rrratcs forbad< lssreg: ar5/ combblaflon of back ls$.rcs, mailed at drc Omc to onc addrcss, c.ost $l pcrts*rc, phrs $2 pcr oFd6. Fdcxample, GWS #l 54 would coet t56. Thcsc ratcs are for subscrlbcrs orrl5r ; notr-subecrlbcrs pay $3.5O pcr lssuc. IndcrtoGWS #l-3O: f2.5O to #31-40,0l; to #4f -5O, $f .5O. Spcctal: all threclndcxcs, !N4.O0. Thcsc

bcludc postagc. B[ndcn are avatlablc wlth rods that hold GWS wtthout oboortgsry tcxt. Gold lcttrrs onco\tcr. Blndcrcanhold GWS #f -26 6f q or lSlatcrlssucs ($9.5O). Spcctal Sbtnderswlthrods tohold GWS #lp,rlc=s

JIMAI'IDMARYJONES

27or5Z 16MAINST

PLAIIiJVIIIFNI'

OIIII

Thc numbcr that b rrdcrlln€d rn the cnample tclls thc numbcr of thc ftral lasrc fc thc eubocdpttcr. The Jom' sub cplrcs wrft bsuc f57, thc rrccattaslE. Butlfwcstf,,c to recrtrrc thclrrwwat bcforc we at our nnal ecour$ changcs to thc mallktg housc (carly June), thcy wouH qr'.hry for

60, $26. Add UPS charges for all blndcrs (gcc ccnter pages). Addrco chrngcr: lfyoukc movtng, bt us

Lrrovvyourncs ddrcss as son as posdblc.

and chaqgca us anotlffcatlon fec, sowc can't alford to

rcplacc thcrn wtthout draqgc. Gronp Aubrcrlpttou: all copes arr rnailed to one address. Hcr€ arc thc currctrt group rates ( lX mcarrsyou gct oDe copyof cach lssuc, 2xmeansyou get 2 coplea ofeadl lssuc, 3X means 3 coples, ctc.)

9'Ee,

2yrs. 3yrs. 12tss. latss.

$20 $se $48 $60 $70 874

$36 $64 $SO $rr2 $130 $1,14

I ycar

lx 2X $( 4X $( 6)(

$48 $eo $126 $156 $180 !0216

7& 8)L ctc: $12 pcrpcrsonp6year. Pleasc scnd ln the namcs and addresses of mcrnbcrs ofyor.rr gror:p sub, so thatwe carr keep ln touch wlth tlrrn. Thanks.

GTB ru fioundcd la 1977 by John Holt. Edtor- SusannahSheffGr Managhg Edltm - Patrlck Fdrm/ga Contrltuttrg Mitor - DonDa Rlchoux Edltorlal Assfstant - Mary Maher Edtortal Consultant - NancyWallac'e Book & SubecrlpflonManager - Eleanor Straus Admlrrlstratfirc Asslstant - Wcnd5r Baruch Book Shlppcr/Recdvcr - Suc Mojtca

Patrlck Farcoga (Corporatc kcsldot), Mary Maher.Tom Maher, fl'orura Rchoux, Susannah Sheffcr Advlsors to thc Board: Stcvc Rupprccht, MaryVanf,for€rr, NanqrWallacc

HoltAssoclatcs lnc.

@\ ON

o o

= z

=od

= I

-

N=

-o

o

Plca*

crrclosc arectrtlabcl oa). Issucs mlsscd bccauec of a change ln addrese maybc rcflaccd for ti2 cadt. Thc poet ofrcc dcstrojnyourmlsscd lsar.rcs (orcop5rof

I

-Oo z

SUBSCRIPTION AND RTNE\TAI, FORM Usc thls form to s,rbecrlbc cnrrcwto GROWING WITHOUTSCHOOUNG. Forr€rrewals, placc thc labd trom artccntlssrrbcbw, tfpooslble.Ifnot, prtntthctrfo. Ctp urd scrrdwtthyourchcckor morc5rordcrteUSfuads. Or.you rrayrcutsubscrlbc orrtrrcwb5rphorrcwlth Mastcrcard orVlsa; call 6 I 7-.87- f 58{1. TlEDLs. ftlcw

-Accouat

Suh€cdptbrr

Glft subecrlptlon to bc scrrt to namc shown.

-

Nrmrbcr (fq rtocrrnls):

Namc:

Expkafl on Codc

lfc rtrrsalsl

Addtesc (Ch€ngc? yes /no)

:

:

OOo>z zoa

Ct$,Statc,Zp:

i20(6lsucEf Group$rb:

-

-coptcsof -

.--

=--

tf,96(l2lssucs)

lssucs,$

-(sc€durt)

@Q6

-$4a(fS|ssttcsl

lt tr OK to scll my narnc arrd addrcs to orgpnlzadons.

GROWING WTITIOUT SCIIOOLING #56


Growing Without Schooling