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Amanda and Emily Bcrgson-Shtlcock arc emong thosc who rrtltc about bclng takcn scrlously ln thls lssuc's Foc1rs, pages 19-23.

INSIDE THIS ISSUE: NH6.6TBEEQENL p.3-4 Help for Superlntendents Cracklng D'own on Thrants Dtploma Regulailone CHALLENGES & CONCERTIS Serc-role Stereotyplng

Speech DlfrculHes


p.9-13 Overcomtng "Artlst's Block'

I:arntng Ftom Peers Wdtfng Together 3 year old's Thoughts Vldklng rfr/lth a Toddler Llfe Wthout Credentlals RETIIINIfi NG CUZTURIIL IJIERACX: revlewof the newbookbyE.D. Hlrsch, Jr. p. 13 RESOURCES & RECOMMENDA.


CI{ILDREN SERIOUSLP p. 19-23 Thoughts ftom chlldren and teenagers

THE EFFECTS OF TELEVISION: Intervtewwlth Marle Wlnn p, 2325


"I feel lllce I'm llttle and etrcryone elsc trs blgger," wrltes Mona Welner lrr thls lssue's Focus, 'Do Adults Thlrc Young People Serlouslf' Descrlbtng thelr feellngs about belng young tn a world full of adults, the wrlters tn thesc pages seem kcenly awane that thelr lltfleness often mlsrepresents them. They have to work tcrtcr as hard to convlnce older people to see them as theywant to be seen. 'I am physlcally a small petson,'wrttes Serena Glngold, 'but I have blg thoughts." TWenty homeschoolers are an unusual sampltng, howerrer. These wrlters are surer of thetr..fcmtly's respect, for ecample, than twenty randomly-chosen

young people ln thls countrywould be. Ttrey also flnd enough attentlveness and respect ln adult frlends and colleagues outslde the famtly to balance tJ:e dlscourtesy and dlsrespect that they often obsenre ln the adult populatlon as a whole. It's clear ftom thelr descrtptlons that the chlldren crave these lrnportant relatlonshtps, and that a llttle such posltlve treatment from an adult goes a long way. Havlng been taken serlously and welcomed lnto the adult world on a few slgnlttcant occaglons, the chlldren are less lke$ to dlsmlss ttrat world erren when they are excluded from lt on other occaslons. Desptte betng repeatedly shut out or lgnored (the descrlPHons of bclng overlooked by adults who are slmply saytng hello or goodbye should encourage the rest of us to make a serlous efrort to remember what chlldhood [s really llke], these young people clear$ want to flnd a way to get tn, to do eomethtng that matters. Many of them are dolng! thts already. Mlkc Dodd observes: 'Once IVe gatned a Penton's respect because of my worh when they dlscover my age they contlnue to treat me as an equal." Mlke' at 15, ls perhaps old enough to pass foran adultwhen he needs to. He has a chance to demonstrate trts skflls as a cctmPuter programmer before people flnd out how old he ls. Thls ts harder at 6 or 8 or lO. when 'llttleness' ls the flrst thlng people see. Several ctrtldren seem aware that some part of whether or not adults talce them scrlously depends on them. Heather Bastlan wrltes, 'If I act llke a Itttle ktd, that ts the way my parents trreat me. Horrever, lf I act go\rtn-up, my parents treat me grown-up.'Amanda and Emlly Elerglson-Stttlcock, wrtUng about thelr ercperlences ln the world of work, recognlze that 'lilhen you want adults to talce you serlously, lt dso lnvolves tlme and commltment on your part." These wrlters ane awarâ‚Ź that certaln legal restrlctlons reflect socletfs perccpUon of young people's competence - the rrcUng and drMng ages. for enample - and some mlnd thls more than others. Manyargue that age ls an arbltrary cdterlon - 'I see no rtason why lt should be assumed that my sense of Judgment ls worse than that of someone two years older than me- - but they are also unsurc of how to unlrrcrsallze thelr trust tn themselves tn a way that would meet thelr standards of falrness. Ttrey may belleve that they and thelr frlends are capable of votlng responslb$, but they can't be sure about everyone else tn thelr age group. TWo wrlters suggest a test for prospectlve voters under 18. as lf they werr hesltant to grant thc rtght uncondlUonal$. (One of the prlnclples of suftage tn thls crountry ls that oncc you harrc lt, you don't need to prorre your quallflcattons. At one tlme lt was unthlnkable that women could vote; when they won the rlght, hos'ever, lt was for all women. Can we lmaglne granflng unlversal suftage to chtldren?) One flnal note. There's a lot of talk these days about chlldren 'grosttng uP too f,ast.' rnl$stng "the best pars of thetr llrrcs.' It may seem, when these wrlters lnslst that theywant to be treated as adults, that they are vlctlms of some klnd of modern pressune to leave chtldhood beforc they're ready. But thls ls not what theec chtldren are saylng. They don't wzrnt to becpme somethlng other than what they are: theywant ushattteg are rlgtxrwwto be recognlzed and valued. At the same tlme, tleywant the gate to the garden of chlldhood to be a swlnglng one (as Nancy \4rallace, vrrlilng about John Holt's Egape Jturn Chlldhd.ln GWS #56. sald so well) so that when they rlant to ocplore the adult world and how they mtght flt tnto lt, thcy can. Too many of today's l8-year-olds, looldng ahead to theadult llfe that awalts them, s,ee nothtng there that looks tnvlttng. It's llkely that the wrlters ln thls lssue of GWS, havlng been glven access to the adult world when they wanted lt as chlldren, wlll flnd more tn lt to satlsfy them when they llnally get there themsclves. - Susannah Sheffer

OFFICE ANNOUNCEMENTS aaaaooaaooaaoaaaoaao


ISS:I Carol SeefeldL of the Insflhrte for Chtld Study at the Unlverslt5r of

HELP FOR SI.JPERS 7le Nol;rlnrlrlr-DeenDer lssw oJ FI-O& tle tr€'4.sleter oJ tle FAMLY

Itfiaryland's College of &lucaflon, called tn November to lrMte me to wrlte a chapter for a graduate textbok that she ls edlflng called Condrutnf Issues ln Fz.tlg CHAM. Hucafion The textbook, to be publtshed by Charles E. Merrtll ln 1989, wlll have a sectlon on responslblltty for educatlon, and I have been asked to address the lssue of the famtly as provlder

of educatlon. Carol Seefeldfs famlltartty wtth John Holfs work led her to thtnk of lncludtng us tn thls collecflon, and I'm lmktng forwad to ttre chance to speak to the graduate student audlence,

Insldc h{omtntlon"

a publlcaflon



ttued thattle

sentaleter to dlstut suryrlntendents ollerhg to tr;lp wlth honulschorrl lssues frr aneas wlere tllere ls ro lor,al lrlme*lrrrl b hatdle ttvtu Thlnlclng that otler groups mlgllt worr.t to do sotretldrg sbnllar, ute group had

asleed Katltreln Mcfludg oJ I'LOW b.tell us exacdg wtlattheV had.olferd the superlnterdcnts, ond.u:lutthe response ltu.s been Kalhleen sent us tle tetd oJ the letrer ilv group nalld ouL whlch reods:

corpor:ate executlves, tntervteurcd Pat Farenga about homeschoolrng for thetr January lSth lesue. Also, Donna Fllchoux's arttcle, "A Look at Homeschoollng," was publtshed tn the Summer 1987 tssue of tlre Kappa Delta Pl .Re@rd

Memo to the dlrector of Student Servlces or person handltng homeschool alfalrs: The Farnlly trarning Organlzadon of Washtngton ls avallable for consultatlon and asslstance tn deding wtttl homeschool lssues ln dtstrtcts where local homeschool organtzatlons are not

Often, we send malltngs to people ln our lmmedlate geographfcal area" not$lng them of Holt Assoclates open houses and errcnte, and occaslonal other news of local lnterest. If you're not on thts llst and would ltke to be - tfyou ltve elsewhere but thlnk you d be tnterested ln corntng to our local errents eometlrnes, for ecample - let us know.

avall,able for thls purposre. In many areas of the state, good relaflons harrc been worked out so that fadlfes who choose to educate thelr children at home may enJoy peaceful coe:dstencr and, ln rx)me cases, mutual cooperatlon wtth the school dlstrlct. We

Be sure to let us know, too, lf you're on the general |lst of nameg we make avallable for sale and dorr't want to be. \ilCll remove your name tmmedtately lf you so

request. Our lease at 729 Boylston Street elrptres at the end of September, and we have begun to til/esflgate new oltce locatlons. We are hoptng to do as much of the pacldng and movtng as we can over the summer, when bustness here ls slower than it ls ln the fall, Later thts year we wlU be appealrng to those of you who are ln our ar€a for help wlth thls; we plan to mallyou a llst of ways you can help us. If you d ltke to rec.eive thts hst but thtnk you Itve out of reach of our local mailing lfst, let us know.

CALENDAR Aprll l. 1988: Penlnsula Homeschool-

ers'Servlcc Trtp to Portola State Park (helptnt at the park, walk wtth a naturaltst, camptng for one or two ntghts). For trrformaflon: send SASE to.Illl Boone, 2427 crandby Dr, SanJose 9513O. &flLlli: Connecflcut Homeschoolers Currtculum Fatr. lO-2 pm at the Church of Jesus Chrtst ofLatter Day Salnts, 13O South St, Cromwell, For tnformatlon: Kathleen Maynard, 203-388- 1390. Mav 5-8: Northern Caltfornta Homeschml Assoclaflon Conrrcnflon and Camp-ouL Near San Jos€. For tnformatlon: Connle, 415-674-L294. We are happy to nrn notlccs of maJor homeschooltng ertents, but we need plenty of no$c€. Deadllne for GWS #62 (events tn

May or later) ts March lO. Deadllne for GWS #63 (events tn July or later) ts May


belleve that such arrangements are tn the best tnterests of the ctrtldren and also of the communlty at large. Mutual respect among educators of errery persuaslon should be the goal. Problems that may artse regardlng compllance wtth the law or quesflons about the effectlveness ofa partlcular home program can best be resolved by homeschool peers who are ln a poslflon to understand the lssues tnvoh'ed. We are also knowledgeable regardlng soluflons that have been worked out ln other dtstrlcts setttng successful precedents. We have brochures and lnformatlon about the law whlch can be made avallable to homeschoolers ln your dlstrlct. We also olfer a qualrfylng oourse ln home-based lnstrucflon through Central Washlngton Unlverslty, Thls course can be made avatlable anlnrrhere tn the state. Please contact us tf there ts any uray we may be of help to you ln dealfngwtth the lssues of homeschoolturg.

ISS/ thrs seem.s to b anerellent to ofrer lelp to tlv superlntendents uttllout challcnglrg or threatenbg them and. at the sane flnE to Increase the



t}rrrt attse,

{ ang proHelzt-s or cpstle tomesclwllry WW oJ

tlons do vlew willrotbe lgnotd. Kathleen McCwdg aclCs:

So far we have recelrrcd about half a dozen replles. One superlntendent called and told us that the letter came atJust the rfght time, as he was struggltng wtth a couple of problems and needed some

advlcc. Ttrls man had already called the state OIBce of Supertntendent of hrbllc Instructton but sald he felt better after talhng to someone from the homeschoolers'slde of the lssue. One of hls problems was a rrother who wanted to send her chlld to school for

part-tlme tnstrucflon 'trvo or three tlmes

a week whenerrcr she felt lrke lt' I agreed that thts would be dtsruptlrrc to the clasaroom and that lt hard$ e€erncd to be

horneechooltng lf the chlld was tn school so much of the tlme, The tntent of the parttlme-student provblon lof the lawl was to enable shrdents to tahe a class such as band or cherntstry, not to serrrc as an

optlonal babysltdng servlce. Ttren he wanted to knowwhat I thought about a htgh school shrdent who

full load on a'partflme shrdent'basls. I suggested that, because ofthe nature oftrrgh school classes, ttds would not really be creatfurg a problem for tlre school, and why not take ad\Entage of the homeschool law to let a student hand-tallor hls o\nn educaflonal program. The superlntendent thought thls

uras taldng almost a

made sense.

Another superlntendent wrote:



good to know that resourccs such as the

Famlly Learntng Organlzafion of \[Iashlngton are anatLable to the publtc school dtstrtcts ln our state. Whlle we do not have an tmmedtate need for your servlcts, we

appreclate your keeptng us tnformed of your acflvldes.' [SS: Interestlng to think

of a superlntendent vlewlng a homeschool

group as a resourcell One dlstrlct called to 'tattle' on a famtly whom they knew to be dolng homebased tnstnrcHon but hadn't sent tn the

'declaraflon of lntent" form requlred by

law. The superlntendent wondered lf we would 'take care of thern'It hrrned out the farnlly had complled wtth the law but thelr form had gotten lost ln the end-ofsummer shullle at the distrtct oltce. The farnlly cheerfully went down and resub-

mttted lL Of course homeschoolers call on us to

help lrron out problems with the school dtstrlcts. Recently I went wlth a famlly to vtstt thetr local superintendent who was asHng for samples of currlculum, a program outllne, and mahng other tllegal demands on a chlld who wasn't erren of legal school age yet (8, ln Washington). After I quoGd the law and e;glalned that the supertntendent's relauonshlp to a homeschool sltuaflon was the same as for a parochtal school, except that home schools flle a declaraHon of lntent form, he concluded that I uras a lawyer and started erglatnlng that he hadn't meant to vtolate the law but that hls concern was for the welfare of the chlld, etc, We had a good laugh afterwards because I'mjust a homeschool mom with only serren years of formal educaHon, a GED, and one year of college. It seerns to make a great deal ofdlfference to these guys - although I can't flgpre out why - tf you can walk fn and say, 'I represent (or am dtector o0 the )OO( Homeschool Organlzadon,' or whaterrcr. Somehow that llfts you out of tlre category of 'mere' parent. It's stlly, but tt works, Ttren they Erre mone ready to llsten to your lnterPr€tatton of the law. We also found a superlntendentwho has agreed to help us run a ptlot program tn hls dtstrlct for homeschoolers who want to earn a hlgh school dtploma- It would conslst of havlng a student take GROWING WTruOUT SCH@LING #6I

3 end-of-book or competency tesb tn each of for graduatlon. The the subJects school would then recognlze a passtng score as establfshhg credlt for the requlred class and would then lssue a diploma when the shrdent had obtalned suflclent credtts. We already hane t]re blesslng of the state olllce for thls. In thls state, at lea^st, lt seems the school authorltles ane stttrng back and watchtng to see what cr,eative soluflone to educatlonal dtleromas horne educators wlll dream up no<L We're trylng to make the most of lL

RI]NI{ING FOR SCHOOL BOARD FlDrn Betlr Grqtrt-DeRoas oJ Cal{or-


I recently ran for the local school board, and whtle I dldn't wln a tnrstee s€at, I dtd wln new homeschool supporters. E\rcry neruspaper artlcle co\terlng the elecflon noted that I was a homeschooler, and most quesflons dlrected tonrarrd me were about homeschoollng, Slnce ttre elecuon, a nelghbodng school dlstrlct ls puttlng together a supporttve lndependent study progran for homeschoolers, and my newly-forrned untf,ed school dtstrtct plans to develop such a proglram s<x)n. I have also gotten calls from new school board membcrs asHng me lf I vrculd be wtlltng to serrrc on varlous comrnlttees. I may do tbls. I thlnk thls lnvohrcment wlll lead to valuable dtalogue.


9/ 16187

Topeka. Kansas CapttalJournal, sent fn bg Chrls Mag: The state mandates tlrern, the shrdents take them, and many teachers apparently tgnore tr6 results. tawrnakers were told T\resday that scores from the staterequlred rnlnlmum competency tests tn rnath and readtng fiequent$ ale shehrcd, wlth teachers and school admlnlstrators uncertaln why tlre tests are glven ln the



Shetla Ftatrm, vlce chat:man for the Kansas Board ofEducaflon, told the Legtslaflve Educaflonal Plannlng Comrnlttee that only 5O96 of the teachers ln the state look at rndMdual results. 'Test r-eults were nprre frequentl5r used to assess tnstnrcflonal elfectlrrcness than for worldng wtth lndtvtdual studenb,' she satd. 'Only 2896 of the teachers tnformed

students of thetr performance.' 'My lmpresslon ts that we went lnto tbls to see how the schools are dolng, rather than how tndtvldual shrdents arc dotn!,'sald Rep. Jesse Harder, D-Buhler. 'Should we as a state be gettlng lnto the test-maldng, test-gtvlng, test-prccrsstng buslness?"

ADD tle


Ftom an atdcle tlut uoas prtbltshd In 1 1 | 14 / 86 Mqtfreal Gazette:

You mlglrt nerrer hanrc heard of them. but attenflond deficlt dtsorders are mlsdlagpced and mlsunderstood more GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #6I

often than any otlrer dtsorder related to learntng and behavlor problems ln chlldren... ADD ls a collecflon of qrmptoms. Chlldren wlth ADD may be unable to concrntrate, harrc ehort attention spans, frequently ask to have thfngs repeated, get eastly dlstracted, not llnlsh what they start and confuse detatls, ...Chtldren are bom wtth ADD but lt may not be apparent tn the early years. Usually, tfs tn the early grades at school that lt flrst showa up, aald Mlchtgan chtld psychologtst Ronald Fttedrnan. Often, tt's seen as a dtsc'tpllne problem or a moflvaflon problem. In fact the clrtld ls frustnated and so are hls parcnts. "Any ch[d recognlzed as lacldng ln moflnaflon or dtslntercsted fn the earty grades ls rrcry often a chlld wtth ADD,' Frtedman sald. [SS:l Interesttng that thts rather n5/sterlous allment doesn't'show up' . unfll the chlld enters sch@l - perhaps the tedlous or lnapproprtate thtngs these young chlldren arc asked to do ln school are responslble for thetr lnablfty to concentrate, Ttre llnal cprrelatlon ls also trteresttng - tf you're not tnterested ln what the school requlres you to do, Frtedman seerna to be saylng, wewtll thenbe able to 'recognlze' your dlsorder.

CRACKING DOWN ON TRUANTS Ttrough Wlsconstn's favorable homeschoolfng law ls not currently belng challenged, serreral related bills arc before the leglsl,ature, accordlng to the Norrcmber lssue of tlre WSCONSIN PARENTS ASSOCIATION newsletter. Assembly Btll 389, fof example, urould trcrease the penalfleg for 'habftual tnrancy,' allowtng a

Judge to take away tnrants'drlver's llc=nses, order them to parttclpate ln conseltng

or work programs, or order *rem to r€rnaln at home except durlng pa.rdclpatlon tn a school program or rellglous worslrlp. WPA comments: 'It seems rldlculous to try to deal wlth tnrancy by forctng chlldnen back tnto a system that obvtously lsn't nmrldng for tlrem or they umuldn't be tmant ln the ffrst place. Wouldn't lt make nxrrc sense to decentnltze tlre system so each communtty could prorrtde the lncentlves that best meet the educatronal needs of tts shrdents? ... lThts bllll contradlcts what reseanchers atudytng Jrnrentle dcrlant behavlor flnd, namely, that confronHng tmants or flrst tlrne offenders wlth authorlty flE ree, labeltng them. or forclng them lnto a formal legal system produces repeated and more serrcre devtant behavtof. These researchers recommend provldtng avlenues for youths to move lnto adult roles. cary G. Wehlage, wrtflng in &l;ucallorl- Fall 1986, tn an artlcle tltled At-Rtsk Shrdents and the Need for Hlgh School Reform, etates, 'Data from naflonal studlee tndtcate that the school can be seen as contdbuttng to the problems of the at-rtsk shrdent. Sclf-esteem of dropouts actually rlgee after leavrng


On September 8, the Caltfomla Supreme Court upheld the right of pollc.e to

unote tn the NOKIHERN CALIFORNIA HOMESCHOOL ASSOCIATION newsletter: The case, In reJames D., tnvolved a l7year-old college shrdent who uras stopped by poltc= as he rvalked down the street one mornlng. Ilurlng the trrvesflgatlon, the poltce found thatJames D. uras carrylng an envelope cutalnlng dnrgs, When the case got tojuventle court, the officers safd they had stopped James D. for suspected tmancy. He looked young, was carr5rlng a book bag, and ttnras durlng school hours. TheJuventle court found such a stop unr,easonable, and ordered the case dlsmlssed. The Court of Appeals agr€d. BuL., the Calffomia Supreme Court rerrersed the flndtngs and returned the case to Jurrcntle court for further Proceedtngs.

"Wrfflng for the maJority, Chlef Jusflce Lucas clatmed that govemment tntercst tn enforclng compulsory educaflon laws ls substandal, and that truancy stops provtde an effecflve means of tden-

tfylng truants. The oplnlon went on to

ttnt the lnterference wtth personal lfberty was 'slfght.' In other words, a maJorlty of the Callfomla Supreme Court believes that certatn rlghts should be suspended when the tndividuals appear to flnd

be of school age.'

TIGHTEMNG DIPLOMA RULES Also worth uratchlng [n Wsconsln are the Department of Publtc Instrucflon's proposed changes tn the hlgh school equtvalency dtploma rules, whlch would flghten r€qufements by permittlng a student to recclve an equlnalency dlploma only lf he or she: (l) ts l8 l/2 years old, or

hls/her trfgh school class has graduated;

(2) completes an lndtvtdual counselteg sesslon to assess hls or her reading lwels and careerlnterests and apfltudes; (3) passes a GED test that wlll be more dlffIcult than the currtnt one: (4) completes an approved course or passes a test tn both health and ctvtcs; (5) completes approved tnstructlon ln career awareness.

The WSCONSIN PARENTS ASSOCIATION comments: 'These requirements do not provlde the alternatlve many youth need. Other approaches are possible: In Mlnnesota, htgh school Junlors and senlors rnay take college or unlrrcrsltJr @urses, count them tonrard hlgh school

graduaflon requlrements, and transfer up to $3,OOO from publtc htgh schools to the college or unlverslt5r to help them cover ttre cost. In Calrfornra" a 17 year old may take the GED lfhe or she has been out of school for 6O days and has awrltten rcquest from

the mtlttary, a postsecondar5r insdtutlon,

or a prospecdve employer.'

Let us know lf you hear about attempts

to tlglhten flons elsewhere.

dtploma regula-




t$SN #0745-5305. Rrbtshcdbl-monthlyby Holt Assoclatcs, 729 Bcylston St, Boston MA o/2116.tz0lyt. Date of lssuc, February l. 1987. Sccorrd-class postagc pald at Boston Mr{ POSTTMASIER: Scrd address dungcs to GWS, 729 Boylston St. BostonMA(Xll16. No.

'perform tnrrcsdgatrrc street detendons'

ADVEKflSERS: Dcadltncs are thc l5th of oddnumbcrcd months. Contact Patrick Fanenga for

on suspected truanto. EUzabeth Hamill





the statewtde leglslatlve

acflon group, trvlted me to testlfy on behalf of thetr home educaflon bil at the House Educaflon Commlttee's hearlngs on Dec.ember 3 (see lncal News, below). Both parents and chldren were among the homeschoolers glvlng testlmony, and about threr hundred other parents and chlldren packed the hearlng rloom as

spectators. I urge readers to buy a copy of the Perursyluania Homeschmlers newsletter (RD 2 Box I17, Ktttannneg PA 1620l; sin$e lssue $f .5O) that contalns detatled transcrtpts and summaries of the testlmony, as lt is a fasclnating record and of use to others involved ln similar legisla-

tlve work. At one polnt durlng the day, the chalrman of the Educatton Commlttee asked tf any of the homeschoolers ln the

room dld notfeel represented by PARENT

EDUCATORS OF PENNSYLVANIA ln the negouatlons about the bill. No one ln the room spoke up, and the chatrman satd that

he took that to mean there weFe no spllnter groups. What tlrts demonstrates ls that Pennsylvanla homeschoolers have ellectively organlzed their many disparate groups and indtviduals lnto an ad hoc oqganlzatlon that does adequately represent everyone as lt works to pass new

legislatlon. That erreryone ln the room felt

represented by PEP does not mean that everyone ln the room agreed about approach, method, philosophy, or anythtng else about homeschoollng; lt means only (and yet very sfnrllcantly) that they have been able to unlfy for lobbylng purposes. Other states that have passed

favorable homeschooling leglslation lrt rec€ntyears have had to, and been able to, do thls as well, and homeschoolers who are stlll worlidng for new laws or regulatlons would do well to ask them how they dtd it.

for the State School Board to dellberate thts year, accordtng to Ttv Homesclwl hut Reprl the nenrsletter of the HOME SCHOOL LEGAL DEFENSE ASSOCIA-

TION, Current regplatlons requlre parents to have a bachelor's degree and to subrnlt a currlculuntr etandardlzed test scor€s,

quarterly report cards and lnformatlon

about hours of lnstmctton, subJect areas, method of tesung, and textbooks to the Board of &lucadon.

Illlnolr: Cook County


Superlntendent Rtchard Marhvtck, who ls in charge of enforcfurg Illtnols's compulsory attendance law, sent a memo to all school dlstrtcts tn early Norrember declarlng that homeschoolers would henceforth be conslder€d chmnlc truants, and that dlstricts should forward the names of lmown homeschoolers to hls olllce. At the same ttme, Martqrlck wrote to several homeschoollng famlltes, gtvlng them the choice of putting thetr chlldren tn school or belng served wlth a clurt sumnons, accordtng to Dorothy Wemer ofHOUSE.

Dorothy told us that Superlntendent Marhvlck's letters, tn clalming that homeschoolers are tmants, mtsstate the Illtnots law under whlch homeschools are consldered prlvate schools, an acceptable alternatlve to publlc school ln llllnols. Parents who recelved the threatentng letter tnformed Marhrlck s offlce that they were ln compbance with the law. To date, only one famtly has received a sumnons, but a Chlcago law Ilrm has agreed to represent all famtltes who may have to go to court over thls lssue. Indlens: Though home schools are recognlzed as prlvate schools ln Indlana and need not be approved by the State Board of Educatlon, school olllclals ln two dlstrlcts have asked homeschoolers to submtt thelr currlculum, schedule of instrucdon, and method and results of evaluatton, accordtng to THE HOME SCHOOL LECAL DEF'ENSE ASSOCIATION. HSLDA attorneys are advlslngl


famlles not to subrnlt thls matertal, but to assure the school distrfct, lf asked, that

For qcl4resses oJ lrcal organlzallons, see GWS *6O or our Honeschdbg Resonrce llst, avallo,ble -for $2.

they are teachlng the requlred subJects orrcr the requtred period of flme. Nes YorL: At GWS's press tlme, the Elementary, Secondary and Contfueutng

Cdlforala: Elizabeth Harnfll of the


poltcy betng considered by the Caltfornta School Board Assoclatlon wh,lch says that school dlstrtcts may exempt chlldren from compulsory attendance lf the chlldren are taught at home by a ccrtlflcated teacher or, if the parent ls not cerflficated, "two opflons remaln: the student may parttctpate ln an lndependent study program admlnistered by elther the dlstdct or county Oftce of Educatlon or parents may flle an allldavit with the state departrnent of educadon registerlng as a prlvate school." Elizabeth Hamfl comments: "Thls ls what we have been saytng all along, but many dtstrlct supertntendents have dlsagreed... Of course the CSBA pollcy does not ln any way change or allect the law, but It serves as an lndlcadon of the state Department of Eclucaflon's evolvlng atdtude toward homeschoollng.' Hawall: Homeschoolers ha\rc drafted

less restrlctlve homeschoollng


Educatton Commtttee of the Board of Flegents ls about to vote on whether to

mandate Pupil Evaluadon Program (PEP) and Competency tests for homeschoolers. If the ESC recommends any actlon on thls testlng re€Flatlon, tt wlll then go before the full Board of Regents for a flnal vote. Since September, homeschoolers have heen meetlng wlth Department of

Educatlon ofilclals to dlscuss thelr oppositlon to mandatory tesdng. The

LEGISI,ATTVE COALMON OF HOME SCHOOL LEADERS (PO Box 332, S5rracuse 13205-0332) sent a summary of these meetings to the Board of Regents to ensure that the homeschoollng positlon would be

on record. In addldon to thetr opposldon to mandatory testlng, the homeschoolers noted ln the summar5l report that many superlntendents are unaware of the ruling last May ln the Reader-Tracy appeal whlch specilIes that 'there ls no statutory requlrement lln New Yorkl that a Parcnt or guardtan obtaln the prlor consent of

the supertntendent of schools or board of educatton before remorrlng a child from

publlc school.'Accordtng to the LEGISLATWE COALITION, many superlntendents appear to belterre that they have the power to approve or dtsapprone of home educaUon prograrns. Pennrytnnh: Members of the

House Eclucaflon Commltte heard testimony supporttng and oppostng HB 1364, the Home Educadon blll, on December 3. Parents, ctrlldren, and naflonal leaders spoke on behalf of homeschooling, and repreeentatlves from the teachers unlons and the School Board Assocladon presented the poslflon of those opposed to the btll. In the PENNSYLVANIA HOMESCHOOLERS newsletter, Howard Rlchman called the hearlngs a'resounding success' for homeschoolers. The chatrman of the Educatlon Commlttee ls now conslderlng posstble revlsions of the btll, and homeschoolers hope that he will then brtng tt up for a vote out of commlttee and onto the House floor, Homeschoolers will try to get the bill introduced tnto the Senate as well, so that through Senate hearlngs the rest of the leglslature can become familiar wlth homeschoollng. [See story above for more about the Dec.ember 3 heartngs.l Terar: In GWS #57, we printed excerpts from Judge Charles E. Murray's Aprll l3th rultng ln the Te:ras class actlon sutt of Leepr us. Arllttgtort Irdeperdert

Scl@l Dlstrrct whlch found that ofa home school ls nota


vloladon of the Te:<as Education Code, because home schools are to be considered prlvate schools under the law. The September-November lssue of Tle Home Sclwl Cout RepprL the newsletter of the HOME SCHOOL LEGAL DEFENSE A.SSOCIATION,

now reports that the state will appeal the Leeper declslon. HSLDA adds: 'In addttlon.., some superintendents ar€ attempttrg to clrcumvent the holding by sendlng letters to homeschoolers clalmtng that since the state has determtned the currlculum that must be taught, and slnce it is the obllgadon of school oftlctals to enforce the law, all homeschoolers must brlng their currlculum to school olffclals for lnspecdon. Howerrcr, Judge Murray lnthe Leeper decision makes lt clear that homeschoolers are under no obltgaflon to seek prior approval of their public school..." Waeblngton: In GWS #6O, we wrote that homeschool groups had met with the Renton school superlntendent to tnform htm that the dlstrict's annual Declaradon of Intent form contalned an addendum that was not requlrred by lau The December lssue of the HomeschrcIers' Vobe r€ports that representatives of homeschool groups met successfully wrth another dlstrict olllctal, the Spectal Servtces

Coordlnator of the Issaquah School Dlstrlct, agatn to discuss dlscrepancles between what appears on the distrlct's Declaration of Intent form and what ls actually requlrcd by law. Serrcral homeschool representatives also gave a r€port on home educaflon ln

Washtngton to the House Educaflon Comrntttee on December 5, discussing cooperatlon wtth publtc schools, glvlng htgh school credlt to homeschoolers, and actlvltles of the homeschool organlza-


CHALLENGES & CONCERNS: SEX-ROLE STEREOTYPING Sue Haley of Oregon wrltes: 'One thlmg I would llke to see dlscussed ln GWS ls the lssue of sex role stereot5ping. From the parents' letters and the tnterest llsts of ctrildren tn the pen-pals sectlon, I see ltttle lndlcatlon that homeschoolers are growlng up any more free of sexual stereot5rpes than formally schooled chlldren.'We asked a few other readers to address the lssue Sue ralses, and we hope that ottrers of you wlll wrlte as well.




McAtptrc (rN):

I don't know rnany homeschoolers personally, and the only cpncluslon I can draw from the letters tn GWS ls that we're a prctty dfimse lot. But I thfnk Sue Haley ralses an tmportant lgsue, one I d ltke to see dlscrrssed more often. Judgfng from the rresponses IVe recelved to my comments ln GWS #58, the subJect of sex roles does seem to be one that concerns qulte a few of us. As I've mentloned before, rny son Nathantel's lnter€sts (he'll soon turn fO) have always leaned more tourard the arts, trlstory, and wlldMe than tradltlonal 'allboy' pursutts. Though he's rrcry actlve

physfcally and anything but shy, compefldve sports and group actlvltles llke scouflng stmply don't appeal to hlrn I have no problem wtth thls. He has no pmblem wtth thls. But rrow, do some ottrer

ltl I'ne been accused of 'femlnlzfng' my son and neglecttng to develop hls 'mascullne ldentlty" ( the heck tlrat means). The whole premlse, of course, ls screw5l. The nrorld te full of thoroughly rnascullne poets, muslclans, htstortans and wtldMe conservadonlsts, The world ts aleo full of gay men who greur up playlng football with Itrrc-ln fathers. But people do perslet |rr maldng these sex-mle assumpflons. And I\re s€en a number of 'ltberated' couples suddenly rsrrert to ster€otjlpe when lt corres to thelr ldds. Phrttcrrlarly when lt comes to ratshg people harrc a problem wlth

thelr sons.

That old double standard ts sUU wtth us. Glrls are often encouraged, these days, to be assertfue, play soc.cer, become bustness tyc$ons, etc. But tf a boy exprteases an lnterest ln ballet, sewlng, or po€try that's when blgh arudety tdts the fanl It's consldered OK for gtrls to be aggresstve because socletlr values thts quallty as a 'mascullne' characterlstlc (t.e, strong/ postttve/deslrable). It tsn't so OK for a boy to be ecnslttve or arflstlc becausc thafs seen as 'femlntne' (t.e. weak/negatfue/ undeslrable). I thtnk there's rxlne prlessure on boys to conform to stereot1pe, and more pressure on the parente ofboys to promote

that conformtgr. Interesdngly, all the

letters I rec=lned from readers tn response to my letter tn GWS #58 were from the rrpthers of sons. I'm curlous to know about the daughters.

You wouldn't believc how many unsohclted lectures IVe heard on the vlrtues ofLittle League. IfI had a daughter, rrould these sarme people be hectortng me to send her to charm school? Somehow I doubt lL As one wornan wrote me, 'I thlnk lt's sadwhen pcople ltnrt themsehes that way.' I agr€e ivlth her. I want Nathanlel to have as man5l optlons as posstble. I don't want htm to grow up Gellng bound by other GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #6I

people's derrands, deflnltlons and hangups. Thafs one ofthe reasons we're homeschoolers. Forhrnately, most of our close frlends are tnvolved tn the arts, so Nathanlel has seen llnet-hand that a guy can be as adept wlth a sonnet as wtth a socket wrench. Hes known btg strong men who wer€n't ashamed to weep over Lafufeme. I\re uratched hlm, orrcr the years, flgure out exactly what ldnd of mascullne tdendty he wants. He often @rnments on qualldes he admhes ln a pardcular person (and he's an tncredlbly astute obsewer of human nature). He's clearly capable of selecting hls own role models from the people we know and read aboul One of his c'urrent heroes l,s a young vtolnlst named Idand Chen, whom we met recently after a local conccrt. And he ltkes hearlng werythfng about Ishmael Wallace ln GWS (he thlnks Ishmael must llve on Mount Olympus). I've always sought out chlldren's books that feahrre strong herolnes as well as hemes who don't conform to tradltlonal expectatlons. And IVe emphaslzed tlrat therc's a lot more to world htstory than the explotts of whlte male warrlors. I can't tmagtne how anyone cruld construe thls as stsel$flng my son. But tf they do, we ftgure it's thelr problern not oura.




Ftom Matdrcd Smlth (MD): Orcr the years IVe had contact wtth many homeechooltng famtlles, and I nrould guess that only a rnlnorlty were ooncemd about sex-role ster€otj4plng. But there's a world of dtlference between the relnforc.ement of sex nrles ln the coerelve envlrlonment of school and in the relaflveh free envlronment of home. That ts, otr.--"1or dllTeren& between schooled and homeschooled clrtldren ls the extraondtnary degree of subseMenc.e schooled chtldren are subJected to dally. When your datly Me ts planned and dlrected by others, when your movernents are controlled by the clock, the lssue becomes one of datly survlval, and self-esteem and Lndtvldual empowerrnent are vtrtually non-odstenl I thtnk lt's thts conttnual eroslon of power


learrcs chlldren pr€y to lnstltutlonal scdsm (among other thtngs) - they're less

sure of themselrrcs and thelr lndlvlduallty, and less able to reslst the subtle and notso-subtle peer pnessure. You can't tell how much self-esteem and confldence people harrc from looldng at an lnter€st ltst of pen-pals or par€nts' letters to CWS. lW daughterJamte, for example, would ltst the followlng teterests: drawlng, wrlun& tce skaflng, sdmmfng. She wants to be a motherwho homeschools her chtldren.

Sex-stereotyped role? Yes, tf thls ls all

you know about Jamle. But Jamle ls

asserdve yet constderate, tndividualtstic yet cloperatfue. She speahs out when others are afi::atd to do so. She is very actve and suc,cessful ln several sports, has a wlde variet5r of interests, and loves leamtng. She has written books and created her own publlshtng crmpany to sell them. She works for money and barter. And, ltke all chlldren, she is very sensitlve to tnequallty and lnJustice. She can detect an 'ism' wlth ltttle trouble. Jamte's hlgh self-esteem and personal pourcr have been nurtured !n an atmosphere free of fear and lnflmidation. When mywifeJeanne and I became parents, we wanted to offer our chLildren a se)dst-free envlronment, to acflvely counter the sex-role stereotyptng so prevalent ln our culture. When Jamie was a babywe usually dressed her in unlsex clothtng. People, I discovered rather qutckly, feel a need to know what sex a baby ls befcre they can relate to the child. Some even become hdignant if they can't tell what sex the baby ls. To resolve this problem for thenl I dectded to go along wtth whatever strangers dectded Jamie's sex was. If thry remarked what a strong boy she was, I would agree wtth thetr observatlon. If they commented about my dellcate and beautlful daughter, I would nod and flash a smlle. This way, I avoided embarassed apologles from strangers (and frlends), and avolded early sexster€ot)ptng by krvttlng all cumments. When we read books to our chlldrerr. we often substltute the femlnine pronoun

for the mascullne form that the authors usually use. WhenJamle began to read on her own she dlscovered that books used the mascultne form almost excluslvely. Thts prompted her to ask why they do thts, and why books wtth male characters often have mor€ acflon or adventure than

those with female characters, We talked about hlstory, povrer, dtscrlmlnaflon, traditions, bias, sedsm, etc, often ending by readlng books aboqt women or others ln our culture who have been the targets of dtscrlmlnadon. Jamle has a well-developed sense ofrtght and wrong, and has asserted her dghts, or the dghts of others, ln numeroua occaslons throughout her

Itfe. To engender a phtlosophy of strength, I wrestled and pLayed Judo with Jamie as she grew. To develop mechanical csmpetence, I encouraged her to use tools to butld and flx thlngs. For her own autonomy, Jarnle is encouragd to quesflon or challenge adults, and has an age-approprtate understanding of sexua.l

rnatters. Years ago I would have reslsted the noflon that crertain tralts may be a matter ofnature, not nurture. But I'm not so sure about this .ulrmorre. I see my children becoming tnterested ln thlngs that Sue Haley would probably equate wlth sexrole stereot54plng. Janle, at lO, ls very

6 tnterested ln dresses and eldrts, belng wellgroomed, and talks about savtng her Straufterry Dolls for her clrlldr,en. Jessc, n47 6-year-old son, ls begtnntng to becorne rnore lntereated ln typfcal'boy' thlngs. I'm not concerned, though. I wlll support them ln whatever they dectde to do. lf I don t ac=pt them for who they are, conIIrm thetr cholces and experlences, make avallable a wlde varlety of opportuntttes, then no amount of unlsex toys, halrcute or namea wlll turn them tnto conslderate, self-assured and omplete young people.

AVOIDING ALL STEREOTYPES Ftom Madolere Muplv PN: tndtvtduals, Sue Haley's comments about sex-rcle stereotyplng made me tal<e

another look at whether llvlng wlth our own clrlldren has changed n5r theorles about ttds subJect. Beforewe had our flrst chlld, Tom and I fully belteved that all those tra&ttonal lnterests and actlons attrlbuted to one sexwere the result of the type of nurhrrtng: 'No, dear, ltttle glrls don't play wtth tmcks. Go ffnd one of your dolls to play wtth.' Needless to say, when Erntly was born, Tom and I assur€d oursehres thature were not gotng to get caught tn thls stereot5plng trap, We bought her lots of cars as well as a doll or two and self-rtglrteously patted ourselves on tlre backwhen she got out her "gucks,'as she called therrr, and spent hours ltnlng them up and drMng them

slowly around. Tlren her brother Chrtstlan arrlved on the scene, and we provtded htm too wlth a

srlx of car:s and dolls. The dolls were rronderful thlngs for hnm to tr€at gently and play lovlngly wtth, but hts love of anything wlth wheels on lt was almost an

obsession, The varie$r ofcar noises and speeds he pr,oduced was a vronder to hear and behold. We began to feel we were lostng our grtp on thls rnatter of sex roles, and felt llke complete fallures by the ttme our thlrd chtld, Ctare, began to make us aware of her lnterests. She loved dolls and prett5r dresses, A truck gfnen her as a present sat ln her room and sttll looked new after a year. She would haul her l\fratchbox cars out sometlmes to play wlth her brother and stster, but rarely urculd brlng them out on her own. Of course, ure lnvolrred our ldds tr many other thlngs besldes dolls and cars, but I am ustn! these tnm tradtttonally male and tradtttonally female toys to polnt up a

)fl@flQrPrRiDlxreffi Much More Than Toys

. .






Call or write for our free catalog. (J0J) l9r-02i1 Dept.


and examfnhg a[ lcnds of crawllng cr€atur€s that have eltclted a scr€arfand a 'Ew, yuckl" from rnore than one gtrl frtend ofhers. At 8, Clare no longer [kes dresses that much, but dolls are sflll her prfmary focus.

Stnce my husband Tom and I arevery concemed about ratstng our chlldren as

. woRtD s HN&ST

general tr€nd ln our ch[dren. Chrlstlan's lnterests seem to be more traddonally raale. an orrcrwhelmlng lorrc of thlngs rnechanlcal and electnonlc. Yet at ll there ls a gentle, sensltlve stde to trts nature that ls errpresscd very beautlfully ln the poetry he urrttea. Hc errcn rcqueeted a dollhouee when Emlly got hers and got one - a gpsy caravan (on wheels, of coursel) Emlly, who enJoyed dolls but neverbecanre obsessed wtth them, ls now avtdly collecung horse rnodels, another gtrl-related acttvlty, but has no squeamlshness about ptcHng up

56r W.lhepperd Ave., Liltleton. CO tl0l20

We do talk to our chlldren about ster€otlptng people by sex. We laugh about the days when chemlstry sets were labeled, 'For boys,' or the dlrecilons for butlding sets began, 'Boys ahrays lil<e to butld thlngs,' or cookbooks plctured on} gtrls coohng. Emlly, by the way, has used my old Erector set much more than Chdstl,an or l, for that matter - ercr dld, and polnted out to me one day that only boys urcre plctured tn the dlrecttons. Old books can be another source of oramples of thls type. Schooltng, unfortunately, can il-so be

a souroe of thls sex-role stereotyptng. One of the less lmportant reasons we took Emll5r out of school s€ven years ago - less lmportant because we thought we werc counteractlng a lot of tt ourselves - was t}ls undercurrent of stereotyptng. At the beglnntng of March one year, for example, her teacher garrc the class dlttos to color. All the boys got Lons and all the glrls got

lambs. But I have a feeltng that what Sue Haley ls seelng rellected ln the parents' letters ln GWS and the lnterests llsts of chtldren tn the pen-pals secuon ceuld eastly be a result of many other lnlluences besides home vs. school. Errcn tf schooled at home, chlldren who spend a great deal of Ume $'tth other netghborhood chlldren wtll be lnfluenced by tlelr vtews. And although I haven't seen commerclal

chlldren's televlslon programmlng In

years, I urculd trnaglne there ts a great deal of subtle stereot5ptng there. Yet I honestl5r don't know whether all those lnterests ltsts that appear so tradlflonal are the result ofoutslde pressure that subtly or not so subtl5r potnts glrls tn one dlrecflon and boys ln another, orlf they are, as far as ts posslble, genutne personal cholc€s on the part of the chtldren. I know that Emtly, Chrtstlan and Clare can look very tradtttonal at times ln terms of thelr preGrences and acilvlfles, for whaterrcr neason, but I do not b€llerc that they would make tnportant declslons based on the tradltlonal vtew of what boys

or gtrls should or shouldn't do. As the chlldren grow older, I guess I flnd myself less concemed wlth whether or not they are pursulng acuvlues tradltlonally related to one sex or the other, and more concerned that thelr lnterests are not belng deflected or hrrned olTby Tom's or rny stereotyptng them on ong basls. Surpdsfngly, homeschooltng makes tt easy for ue to fall lnto one partrcular brand of stereotyptng. We encourage chlldren to follow thelr own tulterests, but sometlmes

an ov€rwhelnlng tnteret of one chlld can obscur€ a mllder tnterest ln the sane subJect on the part of anotlrer ctrlld. Or we parents rnay onl5r follow up on an lnterest a chlld has talked about at great length, and nerrcr get around to tntroduclng her to a whole aepect of the world she has never or rare\r menfloned. In searchtng for tdeas for Chrlstmas glfts thts year ure decfded to ghrc ClaE an electronlcs ldt from Radto Shack errcn though she had never ef,pressed an tnterest tn one. We harc had s€\rcral such ldts on and ofrover the years, rnost of whtch have elther bcen owned or taken oner by Chrtstlan wlth tds overwhelrnlng lnterest ln electronlcs, Clare dtd a couple of the proJects rtght auray and commented to me a day or turo after Chrlstrnas, 'I love my electronlcs ldt" I alw"ays thought those thtngs urere for Chrtsflan, but I really llke thenr, too.' She dtdn't feel that electronlcs nras the provlnce of boys as much as she felt that lt was

'owned' by Chrtsttan.

What the neigtrborhood hds are lnterested ln can also determlne what our lidds are most loud$ lnterested tn, for a tlme at least. If we comblne thts wtth the desL'e of marry horrrschoollng parents to be nondlrectfue, we can lock our ldds {nto an lnterest and keep them from growlng.If we relnforce only that tnterest by only buytrg equlpment or readtng books that relate to lt nrc are not dotng our prlmary Job ofrnaldng sure the chtld gatns access to the world. We are ster€otyplng hlm on the basls of lnterests, allowtng our obsenratlons of hls behavtor to harden lnto one

vlew, one set of expectatlons about how he wlll or should react, Just as those parents who years ago obserrred many girls lnterested ln one set of thtngs and many glrls tnterested ln another allowed their observatlons to harden lnto rules about how all boys and g;lrls should act. I am not, ofcoursc, saytng that we

should glrrc up supporttng a child's lnterest, but that we ne.ed to malntaln a bdance. I have always thought homeschoollng had

much slmllarlty to ddfng a btcycle.

Forurard movement or change ls always a necesslty, and lnlle:dbtltt5r slows the prooess so balance ls lost and you fall ofr.




I am not surewhat Sue Haley means by 'grolrrlng up free of scxual ster€otJpes.' Does she mean glrls studylngJudo rather than ballet and wanttng to be doctors rather than nurses? Does she conslder mottrerhood a sexual stereogrpe?

Inststtng that our chlldren avotd ster€otJ4res may beJust as ltmttlng as tnststtng that they fulflll thern, for tt

lmposes our thoughts and values on thelr choloes. Maybe there ls somethtng lmportant ln those stereotSrpes or acflvlfles tlnt our ctrlldren need to erplore. One of the ad\rantag$ of homeschooltng ls that lnstead of belng pres€nted wlth a set of answers (orJobs) from whlch to choose, cldldren can ask thelr ovm questlons, follow thelr own lnterests and dellne thelr own work. One of my daughters ls lnterested ln sclence. At home she ts able to set up her own experlments, GROWING WTruOUT SCHOOLING #6I

play wth sclenc€ matedds, plck up and, drop subJects as she wlshes. In the last fery years she has leamed, on her oum, a great deal about plant and tree tdentlflcaflon, ecologl, and herbs, She doesn't pursue any of thts tn a [near fashlon (much to her father's dlsmayl). Her lnterest comes and goes but bullds steadtly and strongly. Is she gotng to be a sclenflsf? Who knorrs? At least at home she has the opporturd$r to explore wtthout sonreone telllng her she ls not capable or that onl1r nerds fke sclence. She ts not dtscouraged by grades nor falsel5r encouragd or channeled by the anrbtttons of others: "Oh, ifyou ltke sclence, you should be a -.' Perhaps she wlll declde that sclence ls only a part of her llfe but not lts focus. Perhaps she will drop lt entlrre$. I see too many men and womenwho nerrer had the tlme to serlous$ e:rplore thelr oum ldeT s and nahrre. They urcre kept

too busy getting grades or fulfllllng the destres ofthelr parents, thelr schools or thelr culhrre. Now tn thetr fordes they honestly don't know how to evaluate tlretr llves or flnd the work they want to do. Ttrey don t erren know what they llke or are lnterested tn pursutng. No one errcr asked

them. Thls confuslon and lack of selfknovledge ls a far gireater danger, I thlnk, than the most rlgtd of senral stereot5pes. It ls a grcat temptatlon to arrange our ctrtldren's ltrrcs. Thts ls often Just another qray to achlerrc power and status. Nowwe can brag not only about our son, the dentlst (or soccer champlon), but about our daughter, the doctor (or soccer champlon). Power, status, freedom from somal stereotypes - none of thls wlll make our chlldren happler than ffndtng work they can hones$5; lorrc, whlch ls a Me-long pursutt

requtrlng rnany palnful cholces. I thfnk chlldren must bcgln malrtng these cholces tn chtldhood, erien lf what they choose ts embarrasslngly tradlttonal, Ifs parnful to see chlldren rnaldng the same durnb mlstahes we made at thelrage for example, gMng up an actMty because of soclal pressure, But I thtnk tn the long nrn ttrls may be better than arranglng a drild's Me and tlnrc to saflsfy our vlslon of that chfld or the world. My hope lg that the rnore experlence my chlldren harrc wtth maHng cholce ln childhood, the rnore accustomed they wtll be to rnaldng cholces as adults. ISS:I Yes, as long as both boys and glrls beow that a rrartety of cholces are arrallable to them. Sexual sterotypes makc chtldren Gel that only half of what they rntght ltke to do can reallSr bc thelrs. A gtrl rnalOng an 'embarrasstngly tradldonal'chotce knowlng, and really Geltrtg, that she couldJust as eastly harrc chosen sorrrthlng else, ls freer than another glrl whose embarrasstngly tradlflonal cholc.e ls the only one she thlnks shCs entltled to. For more about tlrls dlstlncflon, see "Overcomlng ArEsfs Block," pg. 9. Arrcry good book about seraral stereotlrpes ts CrDt,trl' Up Ftee: Ralstqt Your Chlld In tle 8Os, by Ietty Cottfn

Pogrebln (McGraw Htll, 1982). Pogrebln also edtted the collectlon Stortes Jor t\e Chldrcn (McGraw Htn, f983), a book of stor{es by a vartety of authors, all of whtch avold or challenge sexual stereot)?es. GROWING WTTHOUT SCHOOLING #6I

CHALLENGES & CONCERN S: SPEECH DIFFICULTIES That so many read€r responded to Cheryl Just's letter tn GWS #59 about her son's speech dlfrculty tells us that thls ls an lssue of concern to many of you. The questlons that a speech dlf[culty ralses, too - whether to try professlonal therapy, whether to work wlth the chlld at home. whether to do nothlng but walt - seem to brlng to focus the opUons parents have when malOng ang declston about thelr chlldren.

TRYING THERAPY A reder Llrrltcs:

I\rc worked as a epecch/language

theraptst wlthtn tlre school system for thlrteen years. I'm planning to homeschool my chtldren and am now trlrlng to flnd aJob outslde the schools. I must r€maln anonJ[rpus for now, but I'd be happy to correspond wlth people needlng adrdc:e on speech or language disorders.

[SS: We wil forurard matl to thls u/rtter'l Ttre delay ln leamtng the R sound ls uery cornrnon. Cheryl aleo saye that her son'g vo\rrcl sounds are a blt garbled, and I would guess that the onV nowel sounds he dtrstorts are those tlrat are rtght next to art R sound, especlally rlght before, as tn

'early,' 'store,' 'sur€.' That's comrnon,

t really a \rosrcl dtstorHon. It happens because Rls pronounccd alot llke a nowel - there's no placr that the tongue touches to anchor lL So tn trJrfng to get thet tongue fn the rlght place, chlldrcn end up dtstortlng the surroundlng vowels, whlch to them aren't really separable and lsn

from the R I lorrc to meet parenbwho, desplte the oplnlons of others, feel that thelr chtld does not have a problem. I meet too many of the other klnd, who thtnk chlldnen must speak perfectly at 3l Cheryl says tlrat the R sound rnakes Brett s speech dtffIcult for people to understand. Dependlng on how dlftlcult, and how Brett reacts to the dtlllculty, I may be concerned. If he's not bothered by It, then I don't thlnk tt's a problem. But I'm conc=med for hlm tf he's frustrated by hts lnablllty to rnake hrrnself understood. If he feels bad about tt, I d deinftely recommend therapy. I know the arguments agalnet therapy - that the ctrlld feels there's sornethlng u/rong wlth hlm, and ttrat Orere's a good chanc= he'll correct It hlrrself wtthout therapy - but I tlrtnk theseu,ould be outnrclghed by the beneflts lf tt rnde Brett happler and less frirs-

trated.. Therapy ls evatlable outslde the school eystem through prlnate cllnlcs (often wlth slfdlng fee scales) and at the colleges where speech and language

therapy ts taught (usually called 'Communlcaflve Dtsorders'). If parents choose therapy, I d suggest that you lnslst on betng prescnt durlng therapy sesslons (unless your chlld doesn't want that) so that you can l) understand the process better and 2) senrc as an asslstant tlreraplst to help your clrild practtce. IVe found orrcr thlrteen years that I get absolutely nowhere wtthout parents lnrphred. Some theraptsts rnay not have dtscorrcred that yeL Also, feel free to gtrlt and try another theraptst. Rfs both the hardest sound to learn and the hardest to teach, and neirr theraplsts, espectally, often don't harrc the hang of lt yet.

I have no statlsflcs near me, but l\rc uratched chrldren go from age 5 to age 9 for

nnny years. I d guess that for etery


ctrtldren who can't say R at 5, at the most, one ls left at 9 who needs help wtth tL The other four hane gotten lt by themselves.

Frcm Jor;elVn Butler (NC): My two older sons harrc also had speech problems, and I thtnk I can answer somc ofCheryls quesuons, Not pronouncturg R (or S, Th, L F, etc.) at age 5 ts nom@L He wlll grow out of tL Garbltng nowel sounds mag tndtcate a speech dlsablhty - a language retrlertal or proc€sstng dtsorder, A speech erraluadon followed by therapy, etther at home or at a cllnlc, can help, My 8 year old ls currently dealrng wtth thrs. The speech erraluators ln our case rpere able to llst exerclses for us whrlch seem to help Duncan get around his

areas of dtl[culty. I would deflnltely encourage Cheryl to get her son erraluated. Shy ctrtldren often blossom under the tndMdual attentlon of one new, lnterested adult who has speclffc tasks or games to share. The beauty of homeschoolfurg ls that the results of the erraluaflon are seen by no one but the parents. They dont go hto any school record where teacher.'s may $ancr at them and label a ctrlld, and lfyou for some reason dtsagree wlth the enaluadon, lt can be totalty dlsregarded.

EXERCIS ES AT HOME Ftolm MatiEne McPherson oJ Perat-

syluonto: Aaron, now 8, enunclated perfec-tly when he was barely 2. I had no tdeawhy people umuld often comment to me how clearly he spoke. Whaturas the btg deal, I thought. So the chlld can talk. Then along came Adl,a, who ls now 6. 'Baby talk' abounded. Of course Grandrna urorrled about Adta's speech, but I procecded under the assumptlon thatAdla would modlS her own speech ln tlme. I could alurays potnt out unrds that she ah€ady epoke more cleady than before. Personal!, I found her speech charmrng, but I made e\rcry attempt not to let her knorv thls. I Just lnteracted wlth her as though she spoke nonnally. My operatlng theory ts that when people become aware that thetr speech dllfers from Ore norrn, they wtll unconsclousl5r leam to speak

correctly. Indeed, most of Adta's speech cleared up, but for a long ttme she sflll had trouble wlth the R sound, and pronounced all "or' sounds, as ln 'stor€,' as "er,' Flnally, when she waa 5 I/2, even I felt compelled to get her to correct her speech, I guess I felt that other people urculd dlsapprorre of her speech.

I Glt tt tmperattrrc to only work at one

8 problem at a tlme. I worked hard at the R sound flrst, and tt was often frustratlng for her. Flrst I experlmented rrryself so I could prcnouncE the sound theuray she dtd. Then I could feel what parts of my mouth needed to move to new posltlons. I explalned to herwhy I wanted her epeech to change, what she sounded llke, and what lt should sound llke. I Er,eatly oraggerated the placement of my ltps. and got very pleased when her speech morrcd tourard the correct sound. Although our sesslons frustrated her, I would often hear her alone at the mirror, pracflclng away at the correct sound. When I notlced that that sound was pretty good (and tt only took a week, maybe two), I proceeded to the "or'1 ".r' problern By this tlme, she had the confldence that she oouldchange her speech. Of course, lt Aoes wlthout that she had

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for one neason or otlrer Glt the need to change. That reason may only harrc been to appease Mom, but I r€ally thlnk she dldn't urant to eound Uke a baby any rnore, that she was also urcrldng at grorvlng up tn other ar,eas of llfe. After a couple ofdays I hlt upon the elfecttrrc method of repeattng her lncorrect word tn whaterrcr sentence she had satd tL She Just hadn't heord her lncorrect words as such. In anotlrer rather short tlme she changed the sounds. Once ln awhlle lt amused both of us that shewould turn a correctl5r pronounccd word tnto an lncorrect one acc'ldentally. I thfnk I had hlt a relaflvel5r teachable moment (or month) tn her ltfe, but I must add the I was the one who felt compelled to correct her speech. Usually, her speech had been understandable, so the problem had been mlne, not hers. However, when I lntroduced my problem to her, I thlnk she adopted lt as her problem.

F\om Kag Brondlrlld oJ Permsylvartla: My daughter Shart had a speech problem undl we took her out of school ln flfth grade. The school nerrer recogSrlzed her problem, because she always sconed trtgh on the readtng tests and was ln the trtghest readfng group, Her problem was an lnablllty to put words teto sentences and to express herselforally. Llstentnt to her stammer and stnrgtle to get an tdea across at the supper table nras pafnful. It wan so very frustrattng to her because we are a very ve6al famlly, dlscusstng any number of toplcs ln an errcntng, and she felt left out much of the ttme. She was beginntng to thtnk her thoughts were not worth the elfort tt took to express them. When we began to homeschool, I sat dourn wlth Sharl and we talked about her problem. It wae patnful for her and a few tears were shed, but I explatned that her problems communlcatlng urcrc not a reflecdon of her lntelllgence or her worth as a person. Ttren the quesflonwas, 'How do we llx tt?'We dec'lded that readlng aloud would be a good ffrst step. I could nerrer understand how Sharl could be tn the trtghest readlng group ln school when she r€ad aloud go poorly. But I'm glad she dldn't recelve any help tn school. I belteve tt would have done more harm to her

aheady fi:aglle self-esteem. We satdownand read aloud to each other. She llstened to me when I read poetry and then she read lt. Then we went on to prose. She felt the rhythm and flow of the words and gradually began to read much better. I'm sure the relaxed atdtude ofour home school helped us overcome her problem. The rest of us had more patlence wtth her and garrc her more flme to expr€ss herself. ShartJust read thls and satd she feels that another lmportant help was tlre fact

thatwhen she began homeschoollng she began to read for enjoyment. Up unttl then, readlng was Just another school asslgnment. She only read so as not to get ln trouble wtth her teachers. She dldn't enJoy tt and often got headaches when she read. I encouraged her to readJust for enJo5rment - no book reports or quesflons asked afterward. She lorrcs to read now and feels tt has helped her ln many ways.

[Sharl wrltes more about ttrls on p.22 of thls lgsue.l




When my oldest son began talldng, he dtdn't pronounc= R and I potnted it out to hlr& thtnldng he dtdn't hear lt. Then ln a magazlne ardcle I r€ad that many ctrlldren do not leam to form an Engltsh R undl

thelr permanent teeth come ln. Not belng

able to pronounce the R ts supposed to be related to the slze of tlre resonatlng chamber ln one s mouth, None of my four

ctrlldren has pronounced R tntdally; the two older ones began pronounclng it at 8 or 9, and the other two are not that old yet, so I'm Just u/afflng,


Robln Arorsky o;f West Vlr-


My daughter.Julfe (5) also has a speech

problem. lJke Cheryl's son, she ls the second chlld, following behlnd her very rrerbal slster by two years. She spoke very clearly by age 2 but at 2 1,/2 started stutterlng, I thfnk 1rr an elfort to keep up wlth her slster. B5r 3 the shrtterlng was gone but her speech uras garbled, She didn't pronounce S, T, G, Rand sercral other sounds. I took her to a doctor to check her hearlng and tonslls, and there was no phystcal problem. Then I spoke to a speech theraplst who told me to wait unfll she was 7 ta do any ldnd of therapy, but I should model her speech - tn otherwords, have her repeat nunrery rhymes, and then repeat her words back to her wtth the correct sounds. At 5, her speech ls sdll not perfect. She sdll can't say S, and sometlmes slidps whole words when she ls tn a hurry. But she can be understood 9O96 of the time, whereas beforc on! I and her slster could understand her, and sometftnes her slster urould tnterpret for me. When I trted to have her repeatwhat she had satd so that she could be understood, she got frustrated. I thlnk lt was tm demeantng. The solutlon to her problem nrasJust ttme and patlence.


When Cheryl mentlons that her son is shy around people, I tmmedrately tdentif nrlth that - both my ldds harrc always been rrcry shy. Because of tlds, I would absolutely not recommend a speech therapist. Myyounger brother had some speech therapy when he was 6. Every day he got to leane hls flrst grade classroom and go to a speclal room for speech therapy. He loved the attenflon and lorrcd Epttlng out of class, My mother satd that the therapy dtdn't have any efGct on hls speech - he grcry out of the dtlltcult5r on hts own. My brother ltked the therapy because he uuasn't shy, but my lncllnatlon ls to say tlrat Cheryl's chtld should be left alone. My son Ethan (now lO) used to say S for F. Hence, 'Flx these four funny firemen" became 'Slx tlrese sore sunny slremen.' I hane to conGss that I found tt charmlngl I'm not sure when he gr€w out of tt - posslbly by the ttme he was 6 or 7. GROWING WTT{OUT SCHOOLING #61




SCfI@LERS neusletts:

Art at horc wlth mY hds - lt waa one of those areas I was beglnnlng to feel a terrtble naggtng gullt about. Art nas sort of 'my' area; Id been pdmartlY an art teacher wherr I d taught for four yeare tn schools. I had a ehelf full of art educaflon books, a shef full of art trtstory books, and they wene allJust sltflng on the ehelf. We frad art supples galore - prtnflng aupplles, t€Nnp€ra palnt, craypas, colored pendls, day, urcod carvlng tools, a Hd-stze JlSsaw, paper ofall slzes, shapea and typeo, baskete of yarn for sttchery and weavlng' tn fact, the only thfngurc rrcre mlestng herewas dotrg arrythlng wlth all thls. Oh, we had our spurts - a touch of prlntlng at Chrlstmas ttme, a btnge of puppet maHng here and there, sorc r:atlrer raw drawlnge for a bokwevrerc putflng togethcr. We\te alwavs had lots of the Hds' artwort hanfltrg up about the house, but Borne of tt was gettfng a btt old, and there wae no new artcork tn slght. The boys' to Put lt bluntly, had stopped drawlng. Ttretr etster MolV (4 ls a drawlng whlz. I an datly anazed by herurcrk ' detatled plchrrcs that she'll work on for maybe an hour, full of lnverrflon, lnnovadon and humor. Not your atereotlped lmage of a 4 year old's drawlng ofa glant heail wlth anneJutflng out from the ears, etther, but twenty dllferent - and thoughtful - rrcrelons of halretylee, terr dlfierent noge ldcas, deltcate floIal pattems on blouses, and curllng shoe laccs on a parflcular st5rle ofahoe. I\rc read a good btt about the norrnal derrcloprnent of ldds' drrawlngs, and Molly ls Just complete! ofr all the ctrartg of nor:cral But as Molly grerv ln confldence and abtllty, her older brothers qufetty wtlted. They wtthdrew enttrely from the art arena,

lt to the otnrlous pro of the fanlly. Houruras I to react? I ould clead5r sec hout leavlng

thtnga were gotng to go |f I contlnued to do nothtng - MoW splrallng upurard. the bqrs

conttnutng to sag and slump dovmurard. Msybe I agree wtthJacob (A that heJust '!sn't lnter€otcd ln drawlng,' I thoughL Il{aybe lfsJust not trle thlng, and I should learrc well errouglr alone. But I felt that t had to at leastghrc ry rrcry beet try at hrrnlng thtngs around for thc boye. One day I uns leaflng absentnlndedly tfuough an educatlonal catalog,

and I cras caught by a book called llrauttg WIthCh0drenby Mona Broohee IGWS #25, p. 81. The coner shoqrcd a dellghtfrrlJungle scene drawn b3r a ctrild, and that drawtng convlnced me to order the book. tn the meantlme I uras talldng more wtthJesse (fO) about rny troubled fecllngs about our art work at home. He began telltng mc how he saw thtnge. 'I thfnk rnaybe Jacob feels so badly about hle drawtngo becauee Molly fs eo good.'I satd, Yes, and maybcyou ftel the sanreway. eoreflmee, Jesse.'Tes, I do,'he agreed. On hte oum, he thought of a rather unlque hrrnabout he sald that he thought he and GROSTING WITHOUT SCHOOLING T6I

Jacob had trouble thtnktng of whotto draw, becauge they Just dtdn't draw much. He proposed that hed try to copy one o,f Molly'e stmpler drawlngs, Juat to see lf tre could, Juet to get a start on somcthlng. lflaybe tt upuld gtrrc bfm some ldeas to rrcrrc from. So he spread out on the floor, wlth hts Molly-model drawlng nert to trts paper, and began. Soon he qras saylng thlnge llke. 'He1r, you knonr, I thouglt thls waa a ycq' etmple aravAng. but she's really got qutte a lot gotng on here, dld you notlce thts part here wlth the flowers next to the gtrl?' Soon Jacob was trylng out the cogrtng too. He needed a llttle convlncln4l, but at leagt the ldea scemed hlrly safe to trrrn" olfertng at least a sllm chance of posstble auccess. We urcre beggtnnlng to gqt somewher€. Tlren Mona Brookee'e book arrftrcd. We took ofr for the creeh and the ktds olaved for two hours wtrlle I read. And ir=trr. ftrlg ls one of those books that rnatntalns that anyone helptng someone elsc do somethtng had betterbc dofng ft hlmself. So I drew. The hds came ar,ound to see. 'Hey, Mom, thafs pretty ntcel I llke that house you're maldng. I lil<e the pattern on the roofl Can you Put lt uP on mv bulletln board?' I hadn't dravrn much alhcr lately, and lt felt good to harrc rry ldds rcspond \rarrnf and wtth enoouragenrent to my humble llttle work. I knew thls bookuras gglng to help us oPen some doors. Brookee address€s the lssue of drawtng arudety, and eays t}rat she has fatth that anyone can lmprove. She has lots of 'before and after' drawlnge to prone her case. I urae especlally grateful to read that Brookes's own son had been rather llke rny boys, feeltng art Just wasn't trls forte, and so nerrer dotng any drawtng to speak of, until he took hts mottret's art claesce at age 19. Now he's dotng very senslffrrc drawlngs, and erren helps out as a subsdtute teacher for the classes.

Around here. urc're all drawlng now. .Iacob's bulletln board ls corrcred wlth hfs nanr drawtngs, and hcs begtnntng to feel, well, alnroet proud. Only two months ago heunuld crumple up twenty sheets of half-starts and burst lnto tears lf I ask€d hlm to draw eomethlng. He can now usually get gotngwlth an ldea, play around wlth deslgns, trarrc fun wlth a pcnc{ tn hts hard. Jesse, too, ls past hls old drawlng etereotSrpes, tB feeIng confldent about trytng out nerrr ldeas. He tahee tl"re wtth a dravlng n(,sr, talldng about what he's thlnldng, holrr he's

dec'ldtngwhat to do next. WeVe also found another good book,

about art apprccladon for chlldren: WnvA, Its a Renoh, by Allne Wolf. Some ofyou may harrc eeen her book



Imk at tllc Crdl{ lrrlz

Leche laglre ltbrarlee. \Volfs tdea ls a very slmple one: let chlldrsr play sorung ganrea wtth art postcarde, the tJPe you can buv at all art museums. Wolfe husband

hal a hugg collecflon ofart postcards, and the ctrtldren rrere allourcd to play wlth ttrem on thelr btg bed. Son they were epontaneous$ aorttng therq noilctng

slmtlariiles, asltng who had donc a certaln patnilng, gatntng familfadty wtth

dtfferenf e$iles and names and schools of art. It daumed on Wolf that most ldds dtdn't know much about the art world, and she began putdng together thee€ art postcanls ln a fonn that others could use' The regult fs thls book, full of ldeas on rnany lerrcls for ways to sort and play wtth the postcards, ISS:I Susan's story ralses an lmportarrt quesflon about what lt means to ofrer sonnone a cholce. To an obs€nrcr, lt may have looked as though ofthe three Rtchrnan chlldren, all of nrhom qrcre lMng tn the same errvlronment one had strnPly choeen to pursue drawtngwlrtle tlre other turo had not. Itwould hanrc been easy, and \rcry temptlng, to say, 'Molly's the artrst tn the famtly,' and leave lt at that. Susan says that she wa.s lndeed almost ready to do


But the crlflcal polnt ts tttls: Susan kne{r that the boys had not stmply'not chosen drswtng.' She knew that thcy felt they ouldn't draw, whlch ls rrcry dlfferent. Feelng thts way about lt, the boys were not genutnely free to choose betwecn drawing and not drawtng, Thelr feellngs of lnadequacy about the actMt5r left therrr, by defiault wtth only one oPflon. Tttls ls the Bltuatlon that Susan eought to remedy ln

the ways she descrlbes. It may well be tlnt Molly rernalns the prtmary arflst ln the farnt} - her strong lnternal rnoflvatlon and dedlcaflon are good stgns that drawtng ls part of her lrnportant work - but Susan felt responslble for maldng surc that the boys knew that drawlng wEul an avallable path for them, too. Knowlng tlrts, they can now take lt or leave lt, whtch they were not free to do before. Marry of us have tlrtngs we feel weJust can'tdo. 'I'm no good at math,'we say, or 'I\rc ne{rcr been able to understand how to work machlnes.' It's one thtng to discover that our tnre work ltes else$rhere than mathemaflcs; lt's qulte another to feel that math ts sonrcthtng urc couldn't do even lf we wanted to. What Susan Flchrnan was saylng to her children, then, was not, 'I wantyou to draw'as much as ltwas, 'l dontnrantyou to feel thatyou can nenrer draw.' It soundg, from Susan's story, as tf the boys wer€ grateful for that help.

LEARNING FROM PEERS Narcy Wollae (NY) unote tzrrlrr'dg: Out of the blue, peers s€em to han € becomc an tmportant part of Vlta's leamtng - tlu€e glrle of about her age (12) who harrc become her teachers, replactrg lher brotherl Ishmael, to a certaln extent, as her prinary cr€atfue tesplratlon. I'm not surewhythls hae happened now. The pecultar thlng ls that each of these glrls all horneechoolers - |firc tn other states, She met tlrem throug! GWS and she conflnuea to know them on} through the


The ftr:st .Jamle Smith fn Maryland, head thatVtta had b€en stck and sent her

a beauflfully tllustrated get well card. Vtta has always'made thlngs,'but unfll she recctrrcd Jamle'e card ahe had strted away

lo from drawlng and palnflng. Noq thouglt, lmpr,eescd by the card, she Eent onc back not her usud cut-and-pastc caflorr' but a palnstaldngly tllustnt€d one, mdelcd on Jarnle's. She has been urcrHng on drawtng errer stnce, rehrrntnt often to lok at Jarrrte's card. Now she bas q,orked up the courage to meet wtth a local arflst to show

htmwhat she's done. She hopee to be able to Joln one of hts adult dnwtng classes or to work wtth hfm prhrately. Then there's her pen-pal tn Pennsylrrania Arnanda Bergson-Shtlcoclc Havlng heard tlnt Amanda urrttes storles, Vlta has always been trnpressed by and envlous

of Arnanda's lfterary sldlls. Although Vtta has spent years urtflng volumlnous but tll-spelled letGrs to frlends, lt suddenly becarc tmportant to her to spell and

punctuate correctly ln her letters to Amanda - ao tnportanl ln fact, that I even found her consulflng a dlcdonarlr. Alrnost certalnly Vlta wante her wrlUng to appear as lmpresefrre to Amanda as Amanda's doee to her. Yet I also thfnk ft must be that Amandas e:cample has not onbr shourn Vtta how beautlful and clear corr€ct spelllng canbe, but has pro\rcn to her that eyen a clrtld can asplre to that hnd of ootrectness. Ftnally, there ls Heather Bastlan tn

Mlctrlgan, who puts out a neurspaper called KldMews. Vtta and Heather have orresponded a blt about the neurspaper, but when Heather start€d typfng her end of the correspondence, tlpfng became Vlta'a tmmedlate preoccupadon, She borrowtd her father's word processor, spent an hour Its trtcks, and has been bosslng tt around llke a dog ener slnce. She doesn't handwrtte letters any more, she t5rpesl

What I ffnd so lorrcly aboutVlta's

reladonshtpa wtth these three frtends le that although they are better than she ls at certaln sldlls, ghe doesnt fcel any meansplrlted presaurc to compete wlth them, or any need to catch up. Thelr example stmply shonrE her what slp can do lf she trlee. How dtfferent from school, where no matter hop rnrrch cooperatlne leamtng there ls, the ktds can't help but be annre of and erren threatened by where thelr

classmatg stand ln reladon to themselrrcs. Grad6 and tlre teacher's necessary approrral mal<e that tnevttable.


I rcplt&

Ifs tnteresttng to hearyou descrtbe peer fnsplratlon sornethlng qulte

dlfferent from the poer presaure thatwe'le aU tr5dng to get auray frcm and prorte tsn't ne,ceasary. Tlrc quesflon is, why does ttrc age of these frlends make a dlffererrce to Vlta? Is ltJust a colnctdence - could ehe have been lnsptred ln the garne uray lf they nrcre older or younger? A whlle ago, when Ananda ullas planntng to exchange $'rtflng wlth a homeschooler she d nener met, she sald to me, 'I can't walt to see what another chtld ts rr/rtflngl' Interestlng, I thougbt, that she sees tt thatway, that there ls somethlng untquely appealfng to her about getttng a look at the nnrk of sorneone her own age. But lt rnakee some tntultlrrc eense to me that errcn as we derlrrc a very ,mportant hnd of tnsptaflon from older people, people who\rc ak€ady been where we are, so to epealt rre also feel eorne omfort or

ldentlffcaflon wtth people who are at appro:dmately the eamc stage of hfe or nrork as we arc. Thts t8 not to eay thatwe ou,tunortuo.@ tdentl&

wlth people our


- schols brg mbtake. An age-peer may not be awork-peer. But rnaybe the clarlty of Anoanda's wrldng Ecents



slble, rnore easlly dupltcable, to Vtta. That


she can do lt, so can


feellng. And,

too, tfs not ae lf Amanda. or Jamte or Heather, ls trylng to teach Vlta anythlng. Ttrere's a lack of self-consclousness about tt all. Vtta mght resfst bclng categorlzcd as a homeschooler or a 12 year old, and at the sane tlnte be tnterest€d tn a parflcular uray ln ottrers qrho flt that descrlpdon. The lrnportant thlng ts that you dtdn't throw her together wtth these frlenda, dldnt say, 'Inoh here's sonrcone who's Just [ke you, why don't you start a corrcspondence.'All three relatlonghlps grew nahrrally. When you'rc tn a Bltuaflon of dally belng only wlth your a{!F-peers, as rmst of ua wene tn school, you flnd tt s6flfng. It doeen't malre sens€ to take atrg one age group and segFellate lt - the old or the young. But nonr ttBt wc\re morrcd bryond thaL and scen how dceply tnportant tt can be to harrc both older and younger frlends, urc shouldnt rule out the posslbtltty that a couple of people who are at a almllar stage of Me can also be valuable. If Vlta urcre a typtcal 12 year old, Amanda, Jamle and Heather unuld be the only real frlends she was sr^rpposed to hanrc. Instead, these arc three relsflonstrtps out of marry - and erren they are atyplcal as peer relatlonstdps go,



Itom Katen RdfeftA oJ Cal{ornla. ln response to 'Ustenlng to What Chlldren Say' (GWS #6O): In October my hugband's mother dled rrcqr euddenly. She and our eon Andrcnr, 3, were rrcry close. We rec=tved a lot of unsollclted, well-rneanlng calls adnlslng us to ltmtt Andrefs parttclpaflon ln the funeral, because hewas 'tm young to understand.'My husband and I could not lmaglne not allowlng Andrerv to grteve or todng to hlde our gytef from htrn We chose lnstead to share our beltefs about a beauHlirl afterMe and the fact that nrc wtll see hls 'nannle' agaln. We e.:glalned that she\rns nowwtth her parcnts and upuld prepare a place for us to be when we dled. We also errplalned our bellef ln a resurrecflon. In connectlon wlth thb exlterlenoe, Andrew has come to aome rcry tnteree6n4l concluslons, Whlle drtvlng home from the park about a urcek after tlre funeral, he solernnly stated, 'I hope Nannle fs golng to harrc to bulld a house wtth rcry btg doors ln lt.'When I asked why, he explalned that he r*ould be a'grournup man and a daddy'before he dled. Later that week Andrew explatned to rne thatwhen Nannte was resurrelcted ahe would slt on the lloor and play wlth hfm (somethfng she could nerrcr do because of serrere

rheumatold arthrtfls). Ttren, after a

mornent's sllence, he urcnt on to rellect that perhaps at that flme hewould no longer want her to slt on the lloor wlth hlm. because he would be all growrl up. Slnce these early conrrcrsadons, I hane nodced that Andrcw talks a lot rnore

about hls fuhrr€. He spcaks about becomtng a husband and a daddy and hour many chlldren he wants. He talkg about the hnds oflobs he urculd ltke to harrc. He also talks a lot rnore about the past and e4rlalns how he can do thtngs now that he could not do when he uras a baby. He seems fasctnated wtth the tdea that urc grow and change and that llfe ls not always golng to be as ltls rtglrt now. I harrc shared sorne of these @mnents wtth the aforemendoned, vrcll-tntenttoned frtends when tlrey have asked how Andrew is tahng hls loss. Ttrey are arnazd that he has grasped that hewtll not alurays be a chtld, but has thoughts and croncerns about growtnt up. IVe becn told nurne.roug flmes that Andrcnt ls extr€mely tntelltg;ent and adrranced Jn hls qge, whatener that mcans. Watchlng Andrew grapple wlth these nenr concepts has scemed so natural. Hle understandtng seems to have automatlcall5r flourcd from Lrls r€c€nt expcrlences. It oocurs to me that lf p€ople were more attentlrrc, as Susannah satd, they would recognlze the depth of solrre of thelr ctrtld-rene thoughte. I do thlnk many parents llnd tt hard to be attenttve because Itmtted vocabulartes make lt hard for thelr chtldr€n to ergr€ss what they are ttrtntOng.




Clate Mutphg torcte



/ssue oJ the PEiNSYLYAI,IA HOME SCHOOLERS neussletter:

When I was younger, I uianted to read

but I couldn'L I uras Jealous because Emlly and Chrlsflan, my older slster and brother, could read hard books. When I looked at boolc I lfked the plchrres and I got tnterested tn what the words sald, So whenerrcrwe passed a slgn when we werc rldtng In the car, I rcad tt. I read stgns llke


One ntght as I uras gofng to bed I wanted to look at books. I found Hop on fuby Dr. Seusg. I started trJdng to r€ad sonrc of the urords. I could read some of them, but I sflll cluldn't read all of them and I asked Mom and Dad a lot ofthem llke 'mouse' and \rall.' I felt vcry happy because I dldn't know that I ctuld read. I rcad thebookoutloud to Momand Dad a lot. I also read other boks, llke I lttle fuan afrcr I got Hop on tup dorn a ltttle blt. To get rrrc r€adtrlg rnore Mom and Dad played reading gamcs wlth me. For exanple, Mom would hold up a card wtth 'run' on lt, and lf I could r€ad tt I would act lt


Norr I can read urcll and I love lt.



My daughter Erln leamed to read by the tlme shewas 5. We nerrer taugfrt herto read. One day sheJust dld lt. John Holt sald It happened that uray, and other parents told rne that thelr ctrtldren learned to r€ad Lke thal too. So I trusted her to learq and she dtd, and she does. She wtll now attempt to read anythlng, even adult boks. When I thlnk of how I learned to read, n5r feellngs are so dilfer€nt. There qras no GROWING WTIIIOUT SCHOOLING


ll loy tn my forrnal early learntng eJrFrt'

ences. I remernberwhen I was Erln's age,


filrrt grade, sttHng fn rqy classroom look-

tng a[ a glant poster attached to the blackboard. On the posterwerc hugenrords, at

least slx tnches htgtr. They sald (the teacher told ue), 'See Spot nrn. See, see, see.' I remember these words only becausc they were ln the same place, at the oame flme, for who knows how long. Nour, pu mtgftt thtnk rny orrcrrldtng reacflon to such an errperlenc= would be boredom. Wrongt It was terror. I remernber thtnhng, 'How can I erprlcam to rcad, really r€ad, when I don t errcn know what those nrcrds say? I only knowwhat the teadter tellE re Orcy eay, but I can't read them rnyeelf"

Foryears, erren through fowyears of untrerslty uDrk, thts te how I felt about readlng. I lfi/cd ln constant fear that I uiouldn't understand what I read, that I would mlss somethln4! that I couldnt pass the tesL E\rcn the grades I r€cefi/ed as

rcwards for rrry efrorts dld not waylay my fear offallurc. Ttre onl5r reason I could get thoseA's wag because I was terrlflcd not to. I learned to relax about readtng from my chtldren. I have always lorcd books' but rarely had dme to r€ad what I wanted. When I nursed rry babtea, I had a free hand, ttme to slt and thtnk" flrne to read. I devoured books as my bables fed and slept at rny breasl I read every chlld-rearlng manual ln the lfbrary, any rrrystery that loolred even vaguely lnteresdng, onethousand- page novelrr that took me less than a rpeek to dgeet I was tlrat hungry to read. Prcntoue$, I had only felt euch exuberance for Ore prlnd uord when I wa,s

on aummer vacauon,

TEACHING HIMSELF F,iorrt Ele SlrddeV Gelt Our eon Btlly taught hlms€lf the alphabet ahortly beforc he hrrned 4. He had become hsctnat€d wlth our tumtable - eo

fascfnated, In fact, that I could not dl,ssuade hlm from playlng records hfmsclf. So I showed hlm how to use lt proper$, howto play46'e and 33's, and howto put the records back fn thetrJackets and on the ehelf afterward. He algo had to remcmber to srrttch a control fiom cags€tte player to turntable, and to $vttch the speakers as urcll. (Ihere ls not a thlng he doee not know about the stereo by thts tircl) For the longest tlme he played muelc to slng and &na to, eomeflmcs for hours on end. llren hc dlscover€d some old Sesane S0eet records I had ptcked up for tdm but ncrrcr pla5rcd, and one of themwas

about the alphabet. StllJr - no, downrlght ahrpld - eongs about each letter ofthe

alphabet, wlth an accomparylng fold-out chart to follow along wlth the muelc. Btlly played that record orrcr and orrer agaln for about aweek and a half. Heupuld tum the rocord oner, get tlre record Jacket and slt on the couch by hlmself, stnglng or followlng along wlth the plctruee. that lPa.s all tt tolc He bccame prcficlent wtth hts letters tn upper case fiower case took a whfle longerl tn that short tlmc, indlng and spelltng words all ovcr the place. Prcnunclatlon, or phonlce, took a blt longer, and somc achral meddltng on my parL I ptcked up Wltg ,t&r,try Cartt Rcad ard r€ad hlm the phonlca chsrt fn the back of the bookwhcnever hewag lnGreatcd GROSIING WTNIOUT SCH@LING


trle hc.e ltterally llt up the llrst tlme, and I could luet see the wheels turntng tn hts head and the concept ofletten and eounds stnrck a chord. For about a week, lt was hts bedtlme book of cholc=. But the

phonlcs dldn't translate tnto soundlng out

rlrcrds; he could spell words, errcn say the lndlvldual sounds of the letters, but he couldn't put them togpther to say the word. Ttrts uns shortly after he tumed 4, and nre

dtdn't push lt.

Nw, four months later, he ts tnlflatlngantnter€st agaln. He has ue make up

for h'lm - hlg tnrrcnflon - as an oral game, ueually wtrlle we are walflng for servlce ln restaurants. We harrc taken to spellrng rilords for htm rcgularly, and there arc a ferr he hae leamed to epell htmself. He now wrltes reognlzable upper case letter€ on the blackboard and someflmea on paper. tnterestlngly enough, altho4h he startcd out getflng them all gotng the rlght way, he ls now occaslonally rerarsfng some of thenl But I harrc ptcked up the at6tude of tndtfierence tourad thfs from my readrng of GWS, and I don't bug hlm about tt as I mlght harrc at

lrrorrd famtltes

one Ume.


Ann Eatlg wrote In tlte Wtltcr lssue oJ PE^II\ISYLYAI\IIA HOIIES,CHOOLEFS


I\rc been r€adtng Wt$c nurn he &art lby Donald Graveg and vlrglnlaShrart s€e tntervl€n', GWS #541 and thlnldng a lot about wfltfng. I'd been tntrfgued Jreat:s ago by the ptrtlosophy of cttlldren teamtng to $'rlte tn the aarrrc way that they learn to talk, that ts, ln order to communlcate, wlth others reepondlng to thctr message, not to how correct thclr spclllng !s. The problem u,a8, my son Nlcholas has alnnys Uked to be tAft from the start, and l\rc always belfewd ln corr€ct spelllng, grammar, punctuatlon. During hte early years, he would ask for correct spelltngs whenerrcr he wote, So now, trytng to enoourage htm to $'rtte to e:rprcss ldeas wlthout worrylng undubr about spellrng wasn't eaqr. Our flrst breakthrough happened one ntgtrt, as vrc rporked stde by slde. Nlcholas xras gettlng frustrated trylnt to spell 'orrcr.' 'It doesnt look rtght,' he satd. I reacted ln a nenrway. Exclted (mostly about rrry new lnslght), I odalmed, Thafs gr€atl That's gr€at that you thtnk It doegn't look rlghtl' I told htm that that was a blg part ofhow people spell thlngs

- by thfnldng about whether

thfnge look rlght. Then urc urorked out the spelfng together. He knw OV-R So t lllled ln vourcls, wrldng OVAR, OVOR and Rnally OVER. whlch he recognlzed. We both ended up tn a gmd mood. Ttre real breakthrough came on a nlght when we were honre alone all 6'entng. Id planned for us to wrlte togiether ao that ld harrc tlme to nrtte somcthlng I uns really bumlng to llnlsh. I rras really trylng to enoourage trlm to stay wlth lt. And you know lt talcs strcngth. strrength I trarrc to 0nd wlthln - wtrlle hCg asldng me, 'lllhat comce next?' and 'Is

anythlng urong? Just tell mel'

I dec{ded to sharc aorre ofmy ounr

wrlflng wlth Ntcholas. I shorrtd htm a

place where I'd been stuck for a wtrlle, Stewtng orrer how I wanted to say somethtng. Thts seerned to help the mood, maybe because of Ntcholas's seetnt that I had to urork at wrtting, too. And as we

vrrote, somethlng happened. I started helplng wlth rpords I knew he couldn't get Sutdlng hlm fn ercamtnlng and dlscoverlng the spelltngs for hlmself wtth other words, rnanaglng to be dtstracted or stalllng with the ones I knew he could let by hrmseU. (Dlscusstng lt later, he agreed to tr5r on hls ovln before decldtng to consult me.) He got gotng on hts etory, and got happyl He even made aJoke,

addtng'FE to'buffalo.' 'I

harnmed tt up a llttle,' he satd, Just tBuffalofel'We ended up wlth a happy, poslttve ttme. 'Now I know what you meErn about llldngurlflng,' he satd. We're aleo trylng somethtng else, When I read about cltlldren wrtflng together tn school and leamlng from and belng tnsptred by each other, I really wlshed Nlcholas could have thaL Then I declded that tlrere was a way to provtde sonrthlng nke Orat for hlm - awrttlng club. We\rc hvfted tnio other famtltes to oome over errcry other week. So far, we start wlth each chtld readlng sorrctlrtng that he's wrltten. Each one aske for quesdons or comments when he's flnfshed, When erreryone has read, they all u/rtte eonrthlng elsc, often taldng ofr from sorrrthtng they\,e heard. Ttren they read agaln. Nonr, tnstead ofsaldng, 'Is thls rtghf?' Ntcholas aska ue, 'Can you read thts?'

DO.NOTHING TIME Ftonr a quesflon ond answer sesslon

t:/thJotn tldt at tlv WMe Llfe E;ryo In

fustor\rca3, f.oltsrlriM. by Susan Rhodes:

I run tnto homeschoolng famtlles who ask what do I do when my ldd says

I'm bored. It ts terrlbly tnportant for klds to learn to rnanage thelr orvn ttme. Then agaln, I thtnk dolng nothlng ls an extremely lmportant part of growtng up, not lust for ltttle folks but for me. It ls bad for to ggt so busy (and I tend to tn my Me) that I have no dreamtng dme, no donothlng ttne. A lot of nry rnost lmportant constructlve urork goes on at flmes when other people nnuld aay I was dolng nothlng. It fs not posslble to be alfirc and do nothlng. We are alurays dolng something. In tlrose mornents of qulet and tnactMfy,


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Establishedr8g? Dept.


ls"*toot P Qot)z+l-colo

Tirscany Rd., Baltirnore, MD 21210

t2 you arle ltkely to be dolng somethlng extremely lmportant, erren lf lt may eeem to you

t}at you

are bored.

WALKING WITH A TODDLER Pot Farerga usote uiten hts dotgl*r Lawenu:as 14 ntontfu d* Tonlght Lauren leade rne offour street, hangs a rtgfit, and cnrlses donnr our long ctty blodr, rmvlng Jaundly, some-

tlnes lostng her balanc=. She stops, bende doum, and touclres tlre gpound. I get closer to her and s€e that she has plcked up turc ctgarette butts. The butts'bumed edgee

contrast sharply wlth Lauren's soft features. I bend to remo\rc them and notlce that Lauren ls near small pleces of broken glass. She hears nolses across the stneeet and looks towad the open door ofthe Oak Square Pub: as she turns stdeways to see I grab her up and away from the gLass, A few feet laterl put her down and we resume our walk, me at her slde to block any moves she may make to the busy road. She spots a crushed whlte engfne oil can, a plastlc, grtmy funnel-shaped thlng, near a telephone pole and lunges for tt. "Babadaba ubba doo," she proclatrns

to the fllthy bottle.

I bend down to take lt from herbut she

tucks tt underher arm and bobs down the street wlth tt. She's qulte content wlth her grlmy otl can; because tfs under her armptt and not tn her mouth and her clothes are already dtrty, I let her hang onto lt. She stops ln front of me, hrrns around, and morrcs tou/ad fhe curb of the parldng lot. Forhrnately lt ls a part ofthe

curb that hrrns ln at a ntnety-degr€e angle auray from the street and lnto a lot.

Insflncffrel5l I bcrd torr,ad her tn tlme to prerrent her from falltng as she steps down, but ehe puehee away and star€s at me. In a momcnt she dec{d€ to dart past me alrd cllmb dou/n the curb unalded. She doee lt suocessfully, and thrs malces her

warrt to drop the oll can and g9 up and doum the curb rnany tlmes: I scoop the bottle away wtrlle she stays absorbed ln stepptng. Watchlng her step unatded, I am both pleased and sad that nry daughter, ln

yet another lncremental and esscndgrl way, ls able to be lndependent of me. I dectde to take a short cut though arr abandoned tr,olley yard to get to a dumpster I see at the nearby Mobll

staflon. l.auren starts squlrmlng ln my

arms and potnts to one of the many huge rectangular blocks of crrt stone that lltter the lot" I walk us o\rcr to one, place her on top of tt wtth my arms around her watst, and watt for her to morre. She takee a few steps to the left and the rock fllts left, scarlng herJust enoug;h to make her grab me. I get up on the rock and, ptcldng Iaurcn up tn my arms, balance my legs agalnst the Elt ofthe stone and rock tt to and fro. Lauren llkes thts and she lets out peals of }aughter. When we're done wlth the rock rtde, I ptck herup andwalkus to tlre dumpster so I can flnaly get rld of the oll can. Next to the empty trolley lot ts the entrance to a snnll, fenced-ln playground. We enter lt and [auren fmmedtatelSr heads for the swlngs. Ltke werlrthlng ln the ptrayground, they are beaten and delbced.

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They are much too btg for her, but she

pushee then and wafts for Daddy to ltft her on and hold her wtrtle ehe snrlngs. AfterJust tum awlnge, she pushes olfand heads across to anotlrer area. the playground fs dMded lnto secflone by ratlroad tres. ard the s€cflon lauren heads for conslsts ofconcrete tables and gtools for chess, checkers, or lunch. Hoqrery€r, the rahls tops are all mlsslng now, leavlng four st@ls and a rtppcd stemJutttng out of the oncrrete, I spy ahead and to tlre left of an orrcrttrrned, berrt and beaten shopptng cart taken from one of the local supermarkets. The last flrne we wer€ tn the playground l.auren pushed thfs cart for almost an hour, but she lgpores it now. Her attention ls focused on a great btg tdustrlalstrength broom lytng on the ground. Its brlstles are long and thlch almost as long as Lauren's legs. She has a small red broom at home, wlth real straw brlstles. Sometlmes she follonn us around the house wtth ltwhen we clean, orJust rnoves lt around the floor when she sees tt by chance, but lt's never been a btg deal to her. I ulorry about why thts broom fn the playground ls abandoned. Perhaps tlrere's sornethtng, as parente say, lucky' about tt. I dont rvant her to pl,ay wtth lt. But she ts already pl,aytng Yilth n. She plcka up the long heary handle gently, wtth one hand, and ls barely able to lreep tt steady. She grabs ft trghter, wlth

both hands, yet tt slldes out ofher grtp' After s€\rcral attempts she whinee tn frustraflon, polnflng at the broom handle. 'DaddyDaddyDaddyDaddyDaddy... "

I squat down and get eye-lwel with her. Slow$ I gfasp the handle and placr it tn her hand. Sull holdrng my hand over

herg on the broom handle, I push the broom forurard a ltttle. The old, stff brlstles make tt pop up tn the alr, then land and move forward wtth a tohoosh

sound. Iauren Laughs and I reallze that thfs thfng ls now an endless source of deltght and wonder for her. Despltc all her presents from relauves and frtends, iauren's favorlte playthrngs are bamboo coasters and toothbnrshes. What lf thts broom ls about to Jotn thelr company? I thtnk about a dlrty mansr Janttor's broom tabng up space ln our crowdcd aparhnent. It dlshrrbs me, makes me feel cramped and orrcnrrhelmed by external forces, when stray brooms start showtng up at our house. Laur,en pushes the broomwlth all her mfghl It gtvea uray to her urctgltt, PoPs uP tn the atr, lande and sweeps forward, dragglng [.auren wlth tt. She loses her

balance and falls down, shaken but unhurt. Very soon she pushes away from my mtntstrauons and attempts to ptck up the broorn, but as soon as she touches lt she starts to cry. 'Daddy,,.' I put the broom tn her hand but she

crles more, polnttog towatd the playground er<tL When I stand up, holdtng the broom, lauren Btarts to sralk to the edt. I qulcldy put the brom dovm and head out, but lauen looks at me and blasts-off1nto tears, dl the whlle qravlng ln the dllectlon of the broom,

I look at her sternly, flUed wlth resolve not to brlng the broom euerJrwhere we go.'DaddyDaddyDaddy.' She moves GROWING WTTT{OUT SCHOOUNG #6I

her hands up and down ln the dlrecdon of the broom. as though trylng to conjure lt

tnto her hands. 'Daddy Daddy Dddy DtddV DaddU ftaaqFaaqecranqqtrrldyl' t'ptck up-the brcom and hand tt td her. She ls not sattrsfled wlth thls and pushes re away aa I try to hand her ttre broornShe walks array ftom me and tlre broom, headlng back towards the two lor tnngfng, bangd up pl,asflc swlngs. I put the broom back where we found tt at tlre wry mmnt she turns around to see what I'm up to. She starts to fuse and acream ln a hlgh pltched volce and I fnatly hand her the broom. She throws tt down to the ground and starts bawllng qulte eerlously. I bend docm to plck her up, but lt ls no good. She reslstg me and potnte to the broom- I get lt and hold tt for her to touch. She touches lt oncr and tears stream out of her eyee. her face turns red and ehe scrqire the sldes of her rrputh down lllrc an upstde docm'U'. What fasctnates her about the broom so passtonatel;/? so euddenll4 Why doee ahe feel an urgent need to do thle nofl I put her dounr. She takes a fetrr steps and regatns her compcure. She looks at me, polnts at thebroom. and says, 'Bado.' I plck up the broom and she turns auray, sattsfled, and starts to walk out of the playground onto tlre stderyalk. I qulckly come up frombehlnd herand plac.e ryself ln my customaql posltton between

Lauren and the street. lauren stops and looks up at rne. She puts her hands stralght up over hcr head, elgnallng me to plck her up. I lean the broom alongstde the playground's wtre fence and plck her up. Oncr nestled on my htp she sllentl5r potnts at tlre broom agalnet ttre fenc.e. I ptck lt up and we head horc. As we walk I wonder about at all the thtngs Lauren hasJust errpedenced. I nonder, sorcflmcs fear, what sorts of lmpSerslons ghe will derrclop about llfe by protor4od clrpoaurc to thls atmoephere of cars and @ncr€te. I gtnr up tn clttes and arrr therefore eomewhat lmmune to the barrage ofdebds and people that ts part of dty llfe. But because ehe's Eo lour to thc ground lauren makee rnc aurare ofwhat ts rea[y happentng ln our 8tr€et8, parks and gldcffalkE. I now noflce how dangerously sharp and hard clty llfe can be, es@all5r for a fourteen mnth old - and our nelghborhood ls v€ry safe for a btg ctty. Our

horre and llrcs arc oozy; wE rmst certalnl5r arcn't suffertng, Yet lt gnarus at nre that our cfty ern'lronmcnt, pardcularly our l€aldentlal area" ls so tnhospttable to young chtldren. What messages ls my fourteen rmnth old getUng from her envlronment outslde of horne? To be honest, the rncssages don't eeem as negatlrrc to her ag to me. It amazeg me how lauren, and other c'tty tnfants, take

the str€ets, oll cans, playgrounds, brooms and sltuaflons far more dangerous and oppreesing than I know ofand tum them into knowledge and sHll. Laur€n condnual$ malcs me eutare of hour spontaneous ard fnddental learntng can be.

only tlme my educatlon was tnterruptedwas when I was tn schml.

-CagefumatdShaur GROf,'ING WITHOUT SCH@LING #6I


Hotnes-WhaUeg oJ



I r€ally enJoyed the sectton fn CWS *69 on adult leamlng and hope to eee


more about fL I barcly attended elementary school, and attended htgh school arcn less. t r€ad a lot, walked a rrllllon miles and thought. I told thos€ who asked that my hobby was thlnldng. Bccause I always scored rrcr1r trtgfr on testg I cras left pretty much alone. A counsclor at hfgh school persuaded me to go to ollege, whrch I dtd fora1rcar and a half. I left college convlnced that lt was a uraate of mongr. I spent four or fhrc years uorldng at varlous Jobs tncludtng baker, secnetary, pollce dtspatcher and storc managier. I tlren became a full-tlre ent€f,talner and dld thfs quttc euccessfully for tenyears. For the last slxyears IVe been a fuU-drne rmther, and these years have been by far my happtesl I knorv that I wlll hanrc other oocupaflons ln ltfe, all of whlch wlll be selftaughl I harrc found that there are urays to

obtaln lnformadon from othere when what I urant ls not to be found tn books. I have nerrer been asked for my credenttals and harrc nerrcr offered arry.


EVALUATE Susqn lUchmon rulrcte In he Whter lssue oJ the PENMYLYANIA HOMD SCffOOLERS neusletten

llomescholer Gerry McMontgal told

me about a wonderfi.rl ldea that you mlght

want to conslder when thlnldng of alternathrc ways to offer evaluaflons of your drlld'e progress to a school dlstrlct.

Gerry asked se\rcral of the adulte that her eon Robert (9) comee ln r€gtrlar contact wlth (dentlst Ubrarlan, etamp club leader, etc.) to urrlte up a summary crraluaflon for her, descrtblng how they flnd Robert to be dolng soctally and ocademlcally. She was bowled orrer by both the ready enthuslasm ofthesc people for the task, and by thelr actual reeponseb. I thlnk havlng thesc

letters tn your ctrild's offc{al 'school

records' folder could be wry beneflclal and p€rsuaslve.


Kattulrtne McAlpIw (TN):

These past sev€ral rmnths Nathardel (9) has ltstened to Tle Magb Flute every day for hourrs on end 0 flna$ had to tnslst he uee the headphones). He can nont stng

whole long sccuons ln German and erren tell what they mean ln Engbsh. Hls leamtng style (ltke mlne) eeems to be total lmmerslon ln whaterrcr happens to caphrre hls lnt€regt. Then lfs on to somethlng new wlth the samc lntenslt5r. I often remember how deaperately bored he rvas tn school and how hls flr8t grade report cards u,ould corne home wlth the comment, ?oor concentraflon. Doea not uac wor* tlme wtseb." If that teacher only kneryl

[SS:l Because we routtnel5l revlew ltl GWS only those boks books thaturc sell

through our catalog and thus wholeheartedly endorse, we may mtss the nenr books that everyone tn the broader educaflonal communtty eeema to be talldng about, but wlth whtch we at GWS dlsagree. o'tlturo.l Uterocg: What bEng Anerican Needs to Itnout, by E. D. Htrsch, .Ir. (Houghton MfffIn, 1982 fs one of those books, and all the attenflon lfs gotten - kr some homcschoollng as well as matnstr€arrr and other altematlve publtcaflons - has made tt lmposslble for us to lgFore. When Hlrsch argues that too many Amerlcane are llllterate, he means that too many of us are unfarntltar wtth the culhrral knowledge and s€t ofassoclaflons that are meant to gpe errcryone tn thls larp and fragmented countr5l a oornmon ground. We can't be sure that we know what other people know. 'Llterate adults,' on the other trand, 'have a sur€ lnatlnct for what wtll and wtll not be shared by others ln the wlder culture.'Thus, tn an expertment that Hlrsch descrlbes, A rcsearcher goes to Hanrard Square fn Cambrtdge, Massachusetts, wtth a tape recorder htdden tn hle coat pockeL Puttlng a copf of the Bosbn Globe under hls arrn, he pretends to be a natlve. He says to passers-by, 'How do you get to Central Square?' The passers-by, thlnhng they are addresslng a fellow Ebstonlan, don t erren break thelr strlde when they gtve thetr repltes, whlch conslst of a fewwords Uke, 'F'lrst stop on the subYray.' The next day the reseancher

but thts tlme he pres€nts hlmself as a

goes to the same spot,

tourlst, unfamlllar wtth the ctty. 'I'm from out of town,' he says,

'Can you tell me how to get to Central Square?' Thls ttme the

tapes show that people's atxtwenr are much longer and more nrdlnrcntaqr. A t)?lcal one gges, Yee, nrcllyou go down on tlre suburay. You can see the entranc= over there, and when you get donrnstalrs you buy a token, put lt tn the slot, and you go over to the slde that says Qulnqr. You take the traln headed for Qutncy, but you get offrrcry soon, Just the flrst stop ts Central Square, and be surle

you get offther€. You'll know

tt because ther€'s abtg stgn on the

wall. It aaye



And so on. Paseere-by were tnhrtttvely aunre that communlcadon bctqr€en strangers rcqulrcs an estlnxate of how much releyant

lnformaflon can be taken for

granted ln the o0rer person, If they can take a lot for granted, thelr communlcadons can be short and elllclent, subde and

t4 oomplex. But lf stranrgers strare

rrcry ltttle knouiledge, thelr cornrnunlcatlong must be long ard relatfircly nrdlmcntaqr.

The thought of eomc guarantccd - a set of thlngs urc could assum€ urc all lorery - thatwould gtrrc coheslon to our otherwlse dtverse crrlhrre ls lndeed appeallng. Hlrsch argues @nvtnctngly for the need for lL He doee not, honrcrrcr, examtne why what he proposee has been so dtlllcult to achleve. 'Our chlldren can l,eam thlg lnformatton only by belng taught lt," he says, tmplytng that onV fatlure of wlll or understandlng has kept us from teactrtng the rlght materlal uPto now. Would tt be that stmple? If professlonal educators canne up wtth a plan of acflon that satlsfled Hfsch - a currlculuna say, and a method of teachlng - would that be enougfr to end (or stgnlllcantly decrease) c-trlhrral ilfteracJ" Many people thlnk so. If you can dectde what to teach, you can dectde what


youUget. Buteven lfwe rnanage to ted;h cultural ltteracy, we \pon't get cultural llterary unless certaln other thlngs are very changed. George Dennteon, rr/dtfng h Tle Lhns oJ dfldren about tlltterate, l2-year-old Jose, says, By what procegs dld Jose and hts school book corne together? Is tlrls proccss pa.rt of hls readfng problem? Who asks htm to read the boolf Sornone asks htm? ln what sort of volce and for what pu4rose, and wtth what @noern or lack ofconcern for the out-


And who vrrote the book? For whom dtd they wrlte lt? Was tt v/rttten for Jose? Can Jose

achrally partake of the lfe the book seems to ofrer?

If .Iose does not feel that he can partake of the Me the book seems to o{Ier,

lt matter whether the lnformatlon crntalned wlthin lt ts lntended to be oommon knovledge? Dennlson contlnucs, does

tn a passage we have quoted tn GWS before and wtll probab$ have reason to quote

agaln: He could not bellene... that anythlng contatned ln books, or menfloned ln classtooms, belonged by rlghts to htmself, or eyen belonged to the world at

large, as tnees ard lampposts belong qutte stmply to the vmrld urc all ltrrc tn. He belteved. on the

ontrary, that thngs dealt wlth in school belonged sornehow to school.... There had been no

tndtcatlon that he oould share ln thenr, but rather that he rvould be measured agatnst thern and found urantlng.

Thts, desptte the fact that Htrsch clalms 'Cultural ltteracy ls not the property ofany group or class,' and 'Membershtp ls automaflc lf one learns the background tnformaflon and the

llngrrle6c conrrcnUons tlrat are needed to r€ad, urtte and epeah effecttvely.' Enen |f "renbershtp tn the culhrrally lttente club ls autonaflc wtth these flcketr - and lt ls rrcry hard to rmglne that errc5rone Senutnely orperlences tt as belng so - there are reasona not to urantto belong. When you don't belteve that anythlng ontalned ln school (ard thlB ls of cours€whcf,e Hlrsch errpects thle comnnn knowlcdge to bc taught) belonge to yrou by rtghl you're qulte llkely to conclude you dtdn't urant lt

an''utay. lvtany Fung lrople tn Josc's poslflon conclude Juet thts, havlng equaH Shakespeare and the Ptlg5lns wtth school and wlth, by extenslon, a soctety that has nothlng to offer them, rather than wlth a culture lnto wtrlch they

arc u/elcome.

It ls not enougfr, then, to dectde what neede tobe taughl We trn'eto


culture tnto eomethtng young people urant to belong to, and llteracy lnto somethtng lt 18 not Ore prcvlnce of the schools to dlspense.

RESOURCES & RECOMMENDATIONS FARM FOR TRAVELERS In GllilS *57, Dh;k Go.IIk,n ofierd rea&rs tleJob oJlehg 6tcr hb M/lnrcsotaJannlrrru.x whllc le wos auag, otd. mol&g lt a utelorre s@-owrJor GltrAS

tatElW lomesclwlers. TIe

Jatnily resprdd. to rurrelrr'tlg



ofien atd.

IAtrv u,rote to us:

By mfd-Octoberwe had arrfued at

Dlcks farnr, and at the tlme of thls wrfflng we\rc been here elght weeks. My wlfe Maureen and I, along wlth Matt (l l), Ben (7) and Mandy (3), hare begun settltng dov,rn to ltfe on the farm. It's not a \rorldng' liarm as lt once was, wlth dafry cpws and other llrrcstoch but there ls much to be done and learn about together as ure prcpare for our flrgt wlnter her€, Ttre wd-burnfng furnace keeps us toasty warm tnstde the house, as long as nrc keep the rrcodshed urcll supplted. Thls ts a ctrore not easlly apprectated by the unlnttlated ctty-drveller, Up and down the urooded hills urc go, wlth a tractor-drlver

flat-bed tratler and our sometlmes reluctant chaln-saw. When we returned horne from our llrst venture, exleausted but proud of the frults of our labor, we were gr€etd wtth Dtck's wr5r smtle and comment, 'No need to brtng'er back flll she's loaded wlth two or tlree ttmes that


Stlll, the sheer beauty of the farm and surroundtng htllsldes malres any labor worthwhlle. Mostly we enJoy Just betng together as a famtly and look fonrard each day to fresh opportunlfles for leamtr:g through llvlng. Stncc our houslng ts patd for wlth our labor and prresence on the farrn, and our other expenses harrc been pared to a mlnlmum, onl5r one of us has to work outstde the home, and that only on a pa.rt-ttme basls. At present, I do about turcnty hours of armounclng on neekends at a local radlo statlon. The only draufuack to belng here ts

that urc mlss famtly and frlends. We harrc found a church ln a netghborlng town and u,e ar€ meeflng people there. We hope to make new frlends when sotrre ofyou GWS

readers declde to vlslt, Dlck extends an open lnvttaflon to vlsltors, especlally honrschoolers and supporters of homeschooltng. The nlc=et tlmes of the year are sprlng and fall, Dlck says, but you ale welcome any tlme of the year. ln the sprlngurc hope to pLant a respectable garden, and a garden can alurays us€ extra hands to tend tt and share tn the hanrcst. And there's alnrays explortng: a hlke tn the uroods. a walk along the creek, a nlgltt

tn thc cabtn. If arry of thts appeals to you, orlfyou areJustcurlous about hownrc as a famlly rrrade the deslslon to come here, please urrlte us at THE WINONA FARM, c/o Dlck Galllen, Rt 2 Box 279, Wlnona MN 65987, or call 5O7-454-3 126.

INTERESTING MAGAZINES Parents' Cholcc: A Rerderp of Chtldren's Medla fBor 185, Ner.luturMAo2l68: $15/Vrl desc,riles tlc fdbrnllg mq azlnes Jor ch@ren u*t&;L tltoWh un harreln't teuleud tlrem ourselres, ldc /rrlarestlttg ercugh u pass on to CUIS reders (oddngsses arsn't ghst; clta;te the llbruy) :

Ftcer: 1f,g rfrgrttnc ebout pcoplc, lO tssues/$ 17.95. "Thls lmagtnattve publlcaflon tntroduc=s young readers to dtfferent cultures - and dllferent ways of thtnldng - throughout the world. Issues have been organtzcd around such themes as why people dance or why they emlgrate. An outstandtng recent lssue focused on tfme, wtth arflcles on the nahrre of tlrne, on people's tndtvtdual clocks, and on thc abortgtnes'conc.ept of Drearn Tlme... ln errery lssue, ardcles, storles, games and puzzles sensldze chtldren to the many rnodes of human thought and challenge readere to thfnk tn new nrays.' Chlcrdcc, lO lssues/$I5.'A monthly from Canadas Young Naturallst Foundaflon. Alms to lnterest chfldrcn under age 8 ln the qlorld around thern Emphasls ls on the natural rvorld: anlmals, plants, weather. The color photographs - of otla monster€, coyotes, hamsters - are beauttful. The text ls stmple but lnformattue and the puzzles, games and experlments are challengtng but doable.'

McrlJrn'r Pea, Quarterly/$9. 95.

'Devoted entJre$ to matertal wrltten by students tn grades 7- lO, thts quarterly ofrers storles, poems, fantasles, parodies, essays, and puzzles, Acclrdlng to an edltor'e note, tlre *E"rllee seeks'manuscrtpte that grtp the readers'lntereet and stlr the heart or mlnd,'and to a large degree tt flnds thern Many of the magaztne's young authors focus on pn vocauve lsaues, such as cheattng, soclety's obltgatlons to tndMduals, how we tlrtnk about people who ar€ dllferenL'

COPIES OF STATE LAWS Dr. Sterrc Declerd (8Of E Absta, Apt. 2rfo, Bldg. O, Azusa CA9l7O2;818-3347284) ad\rertfses a collecdon ofhorneschoollng lawe tn all ffty statea for $16. As nrc'ne often emphaslzed, knowlng the text of the law ts lmportant, but don t subsfltute thls for learnfng the detatls of the surrent altuadon from others tn your area. GROWING WTruOUT SCHOOLING #6I

t i

i ts


Lllrc the @rlrrfrU oJtle PottedFlrs (see nerd revlew), thls ts a book I have read serreral tlrnes over the last few years sheerly for pleasure. It was recommended to us by two GWS readers who saw that we quoted an lntervlew wlth Feynman ('Sclentlst Knocks Educatlon') ln GIttS #49. I had seen Fryr:man on'Nova'years ago and Lnew h,tm for a talkattve, energeflc, Nobel-prlzeurlnnlng physlclst I understand he was on last year's coruxrlsslon lnvestlgattng the Chdlenger space shuttle dlsaster, so those of you who stlll watch TV (mlrre's put away) have probably seen hlm more recently. Hls book shows hlm to be trrepresslble, gvercurtous, and rrcry funrry: lfs such a treat to IInd a book that malces me laugh out loud. Funny thrags are apt to happen to people who meet lfe more t}tan halfruay. whtch Feynman certalnly does. Sometlmes theJoke ls on hlm, and somettmes on the other party, but he always tells the storles good-naturedly andwlth enoug[t tcdststo keepyou surprlsed. Fenyman's determlnatlon to flgure thtngs out for hlmself ls lnsplraflonal. Here's one erample. He read an arflcle ln Sclence about bloodhounds' remarkable abttlty to srell. and he wondered how S@d ;r.of,e were at detecttrg snells. So he asks hts w|fe to take a book offthe shelf whtle he's out of the room and replacc lt, so he could tryto tellwhlch one she touchedwhenhe returned. Ashe reported: I came fn - and nothlng tq ttl It was easy. YouJust smell the books. It's hard to erqtlaln, becausewe're not usedto saytngthlngg about It. You put each book up to your nose and sntfr a fery tlmes, and you can tell. It's very dlfferent. A book that's been standtng there a whtle has a dry, unlnterestl4g ktnd of smell. But when a hand has touched lt, there's a dampness and a smell that's very dtsttnct.

Ttat's fasclnatlng, but the real polnt ls, how uuny others would thlnk of runnlng such an orpertment?llnd howmanywould actually do ft?

Hts curloslty also leads hlm to: - Ferry ants around hls home to see how they make trarls. - Declpher Mayan hrerogllryhlcs on hls Mqdcart hone5rmoon. - Crack the safes holdtng nuclear secrets whlle worldng at Los Alanos. - Play on the streets wlth a sa:rrba band fn

Brazll. And dozrns of other pursults, tn blologl, art, muslc, phtlosophy, psychologr, forelgn culture, and more. In two sectlons of the book Frynman volces astute crlttclsn of tradtttonal educatlon: (1) In Brazll, he was amaznd to reallze that college students spent all thetr tlme memorTzlng dellnltlons and abstract statements by rote, and they had not the falntest ldeas of howthose terms app[ed to real Itfe - and no one even seemed to mtndl Not too dlfferent from many areas of tradtttonal educatlon here. (2) He senred on a commlttee to choose elementary math and sclence tercts for the state of Callfornla, and he learned that he was the only personwho actualty reodthe books theywere supposed toJudge. Errcryone else relled on what they were told, usually by the publlsher. Slrece thts book touches only ltghtly on Fe5mman's llfe t hope he has another book tn hlm. I'm surâ&#x201A;Ź ft wlll be anotler tr,eat. - Donna Rtchoux

COI.'NTRY OF THE POINTED FIRS by Sarah Jewett $5.95 Not much actually tvppens tn the 15O ryges of or trrdeed $1ihe.ten strort stortes that follow lt. Mostly, peoplqS[sn arid talk. and travel a llttle and tdk some more. How to descrlbe the charm I flnd here. as have others to whom I have passed the boolr? The characters are so vlvld and such lorrely people, and the setttng - rural Malne of the late 18OO's - so calm and real, that you feel you have escaped lnto another world, and a wonderful one. In the maln novel (or ls lt fact?), the narrator, a wornan, spends a summer ln a Matne llshlr4lvtllage. Though an outslder, she ls stt[ a natlve Malner

ftu @unfrA oJtte tufrtrd.Fhs,

.Ioha llolfr BooL rnd Murlc Stolc

729 Boylston Street

herself, and ls actepted well enough by the townspeople to hear thetr storles and share thetr acttvltles. In thts sertes of sketches we meet perhaps half a doznn people, startlng wtth good-natured, hearly-set Mrs. Todd, her landlady, who roarns the woods and meadows gatherfng herbs. There are no mallclous people tn the norrel or the storles - Jewett sees the good tn everyone, erren those who are fooltsh, mlserly, or sharp-tongued. Every ttme I read thls collecflon, lt moves me to see how lmportant sfnoply vlsftfng was ln those days. With so much hard workto do wery day, and no prepackaged electric entertatrment, llttle readlng, and no telephones, people reltshed so much the chance to talk, to gosslp, share newsi tell storles. Those of us who are looldng for alternattves to TV can learn a valuable lesson here. The dtalogue ls full of apostrophes, as Jewett trles to reproduce the rural dlalects, and thts may be off-putu4g at ftrst glance. But I did not llnd them dlstractxrg as I read. And the dlalogue ls rewardtng, as a couple of examples may show. In one of the short stortes, a farm couple fs tdktng on the porch about thelr two llttle daughters. fire father says:

'I want'em to thlngs.'

see how

otherfolks does

"\[rhy, so do I,' - here t}re rocldng chalr stopped omlnousl5r,-'but so lon$s they're

contented''Contented afn't all ln thfs world: hoppertoads may have that quallty arr'spend all

thelr tlme a-bllnklrt'...'

Bogton. MAO2l16

Wtlla Cather ranks thls nqrel vdthTtu furlet can thtnk of no others that confront ttme and change so serenely.'l am glad to have thts chance to recornmend thls book to all of you. - Donna Richoux

Iztter and HuckFlnn saytrlg'I

PORTRATTS, VOL. 1, 2, & 3 byJohn Lampldn $4.50 each, Set of 3, $f 2.5O These three sllm volumes are clerrer, surprtslng, and often humorous ocplorattons of the subtle, arocatfue po\vers of the plano, and muslc tn general. Inthe splrtt of works as dtverse as Beethovens PastsalSymphring, Choptr's Wtter Wln4 and Elfngtons erauan these pleces, sometlmes refered to as'program muslc,' ane destgned to make the muslclan focus on lrnterprethg a speclftc mood, story, atmosphere, or emotlon. Thls aspect of playlrg plano ls gtven occasslonal, but rarely prlmary, attentlon ln most muslc methods: lt !s usually not unfll one gets techrdque under one's llngers that ernphasls ls gtven to putttng passlon and shadtng tn one's playt4g."Ihe Portatts serles helps thts sltuatton by ahtng ltself squarely at the early ptantst, maklng each song represent tlpes of people ffhe MaharaJa, The Patrlot), anlmals ffhe Hatchrng Egg, The Hound and the Hare), sltuatlons (Mldnght Rlde, On Wtntet's lce), and emoUons (Serenade for Lovers, Daltt ls Sad). In dl, there are twenty-elght songs that present an lrrterprettve and techntcal challenge wtth each plece. These books are not a muslc method to teach one honr to read and play plano muslc (Mrs.

And from the matn novel, comtng home after a famtly reunlon: I saw that Mrs. Todd's broad shoulders began to shake. 'There was good slngers

there: yes, there was encellent slngers,'she agreed heartlly, puttlngl down her teacup, tut I chanced to drtft alongslde Mls' Peter Bowden o'Great Bay, an'I couldn't help thlnkfn' f she was as far out o'tourn as she was out o' tune, she wouldn't get back tn a day.'


Steurarts's Plonol.essons, $10.95 and sold here,ls a good place to start), so you mfght need some more errpertenced help tf you're teachlng yourself the piano and want to have fun wlth these songs: there ls no

technlcal help other than a generous supply of flngertng notaUons. For lnstance, the fourth so4g fn Volume One, Angry Mother, lnvolrrcs lots of crossedhands and a fourbar tlme change ln the mtddle of the song: the flrst song ln Volume TWo, The Hatchtng Egg, ls enttrely tn the treble cleff, ln l2l8 ttme, wtth the rrgbt hand playtng ln C MaJor and the left hand



SUZUKI CASSETTE TAPES These are the tapes to use lf you are worklng wtth the Suzuld Muslc Method. Each tape contalns the same songs as the correspondxxg book, tn the same order, played by professtonal mustctans. karn by ear flrst. then

delve lnto the


suzun prANo rApE, vors. 1 & 2 on one tape, $rz.go; snznKr PrANo Musrc BooK, vol. I $ vol. 2 $ guzttKr vrolrN TAPE. vol. I $ vol,. 2 $ SU:n I(I VIOLIN MUSIC BOOK


$e.SO Vol.

2 $O.fO

Bostoru MAO2l16

ln G flat MaJorl But the compGrcr, homeschooler John Lamphn, leads you through each song rather efrortlessly by crcattng catchy melodtes and bumpttous rhythms, and ustrg very clear, uncluttered notatton to makc eactr ptece easy to read and grasp (see tllustratton). I especlally enJoy how he lntroduces prepared ptano ldeas, puttln$ rulers and tndoc cards orrer certatn strtngs to create sounds Uke an Indlan sltar, horses'hooves, and snare dnmts to add to the ctraracter of each plecc. It ts recmtmended that one use a grand ptano for the prepared pleces, and take tt from me that tt ls a parn to get lndex cards through the proper strlngs ln an uprlght ptanol fiierâ&#x201A;Ź's plenty of plano technlque to be found here, but lt ls presented tn a qulet, matter-of-fact nranner. I do have one mlnor obJectton to thls serles - lts use of language. The stereotypes ln some of the song tltles seem thoug[tless - must mothers be angry" Couldn't the plecrcJust be called'Anger?Also the stodgr tone of lt's Notes ls annoytng - 'Afteryou arc able to play thls plece well, you can play lt on a grand plano that has been prepared as follows..'.'Are you ldddtng?As soon as I read about prepartag the ptano I had to set tt up and hear tt. Why wan to try the hooks that make these songs erctra speclal? One can master these songs. and have a lot of fun to boot, whlle playtng them wtth the preparatlons ln

dtsgulsed as songs. My favorlte ptece ts called'Sllent Monle' and ls full of those classlc mustcal cltches that trnmedlately cdl to rnlnd the Hero, Herclne, Vlllaln, and The Chase. Thls sertes can be partlcularly useful to the personwho ts tlrâ&#x201A;Źd of the standard beglnntng plano repertolre orwhose early prano lessons are becomtng too rote and wants to ocplore hour the plano can be an evocattve, entertalnlng lnstrument, rather thanJust a mechanclal muslc machlne. - Patrtck Farenga





place. Drccpt for the seemlngily obllgatory Amerlcan 'Indian Song'whlch one flnds ln so many beglnrdng plano books - a monotonous 4/4 beat wlth open flfths Ir the left hand ad lnflnttum - I flnd lampldn's songs bAght and ortgtnal. Each one ls a complete, enJoyable work rather than techntcal ocerclses



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talce some of the mystery out of the process that led

to thrs well-crafted and orcfUng bmk. - Susannah She{fer

ROBIN HOOD byJamte Smrth $3.5O What would happen lf Robln Hood, who stole from the rlch and gave to the poor, survtved the centurles ln suspended anlmatlon and awoke to flnd htmself tn the year 1987 and the cuntemporary of a young gtrl named Jamte? Thts must be what Jamte Smlth, the author of Tte ModenaAdt;r.ntwes oJ Robfr Hd" asked herself as she began tmagfrfng the story. In the ftntshed book, Smtth's lmagtnatlon ls wlld but thorou€h: havtag concelved the o4gfnal premlse. she then supports tt urtth detarls that make the story beltevable and capflvatl4g. Fans of Robtn Hood, and of suspense ln general, wtll e4gerly follow Jamte and Robtn through thetr modern adventures. Readers wtll also enJoy the story's appealtngly redlsttc dlalogue, whlch captures the speech of both the I2-year-old herotne and the centurles-old Robrn. From the scene ln whlch Jamte and Robfn meet:

'h;lthee, ldnd slr,' safd Robtn, 'could you spare a morsel of your meal7 Robln was hungry - after all, he hadn't eaten for seven hundred and etghty-two yearsl Jamte slowly put her apple down. 'Dccuse me, what dld you sa)?' 'I have not eaten for a long tlme,' said Robtn. 'Would you be so ldnd as to share some of your meal?' "Oh... sure," repltedJamle, and handed RobIr a peanut butter sandwtch. ... 'Are you an actor?' asked Jamte. "An actor? I don't know what that ts. I am an archer.' replled Robtn. "Don't kld me," satd Jamte. Tou're really an actor.' 'By the Mass, I tell you I am an archerl' sald Robfn loudly. "Ok, OK,'replled Jamte. 'My name's Jamte Green. What's yoursP 'Robln Hood,' safd Robttr. 'Good grlefl' errclatmed Jamte. "Now I know you'r€ an actor. And by tlre way, I'm not a 'slr.' Itn a glrl.' 'Fo4Pe me |f I offended you, ldnd malden,'satd Robxr courteousllr. 'But why do you wear your halr so short?' Robtn and Jamte overcome thfs hlilal confuslon and become fast frlends as they try to escape Robln's enemles. The Mdern Aduqthtres oJ Rob{n Hd. should encourage other young wrtters to put thelr lmagtraed adventures on paper for others to read. Talce a look at the corwersaUon between Jamle Smlth and her father lre GWS #56, too, about how the book grew from ldea to llntshed story t}tds should

TIIE JOY OF SIGNING by Iottte Rtekehof $f S.gS Hardcover




7@A Grvc tlc inder rnd ni.Hb fosprl, dtrwins r ttr€E!


Ur.tq Wc dd€lrd e hnc cheore pdrr


As soon as I saw thls book at Holt A.ssoclates. I had to open tt. Once I opened lt, I lmew I wanted a copy. Even though lt was a bonowed copy from the Boston Publtc Llbrary, I wanted n badly enough to return that copy to the llbrary, apply for a library card, and wait the two to three days for tt to return to the shelves so I could borow tt and take lt home. At flrst, I really studted thts book, trJdng to rememberwhole gobs and teachtng lt to my ldds. As wtth most of my passlons, thts tapered off as I became tnvolved tre other thtngs. However, I sttll flnd myself drawn back to the book from ttme to tlme as a reference. Its layout by subJect areas (e.9., Famfry Relationshlps, Nature, Food and Related 'Words, etc.) malres lt a good book to browse, and the vocabulary lnde( ln the back ls qutte useful when I krrow I should remember a spectllc slggt, but need to refresh my memory. The terrt accomparrylng each srgn descrtbes mald4g the slgn, gtves a posstble odgfn @htch makes a good remlnder), and llsts ocamples of usagle. Thls book also lncludes baslc hlstory of signt4g and general lnformatlon useful to the begtnntng stgner. How do I use thts stulf, anyw4f I don't lmow anyone deaf, and frankly, I'm not sure how well I could make myself understood. I do use ltwtth my ldds, parttcularly when I want to emphaslze somethtng or communlcate across a dlstance wlthout screamtng. I have used stgnt4g on a croqrded subway, when I lost my volce for a few days, andJust for playtng around. I partlcularly enJoy flgurlng out ways to stgn wlth muslc. (Have you ever nottccd how close the words'slgn' and'slng'ar€ ln spelfng?) If you wanted to leam to communlcate wlth deaf people, you would stlll need someone to teach you syntax, shorthand constructlons and colloqulallsms. The book could then serve as a resounce and mernoryJog. But lf youJust want to ecperlment. thls book ls sometht4g you czrn take ln whatever slze bltes you want. Play wlth ltt It's fun, and mfht prove useful someday. - Glnger Fltzslmmons

Edfted & Destgn€d


Fat Farenga


FOCUS: DO ADULTS TAKE YOUNG PEOPLE SERIOUSLY? The wrldngs that follow arc ln rcsponse to a letter nrc eerrt to several young GWS readers. whlch read ln part:

WCrc tnterestcd to know hor lt feels to be pung today, wtth pardcular regard to: 'The walr 1ou are trreated by older people. Do you feel that older people generally take you serlously, ltsten to you when you say somethlng; reapect your wlshes, oplnlon8, feellnga? Perhapa you fed that you are tahen scrtously wtthtn your fam$, but what about outelde the frmt$ If 1ou harrc connectlons wtth people outslde your famlly tn whLtch you feel you're taken serlouely and ltstcncd to, urcd llke to hear about thenr. If you eonrctlmea feel frustrated because you're mt llstened to, urc'd llke to hear about that. too. ' Whether or not you aner feel that you're not alloured to do somethlng because you're too young. Does tlrls sort of thlng bother you, or do you Bgure that whoerrcr rnade that rule had a good reaaon for lt? Etrls wtll probably vary, dependtng on what you re referrlng to.) For example, ln the Unlted Statea people aren't allourcd to rote unfll they're 18. Would you llke to see thls law changed? Or are you content to walt undl you're l8 to bcgln roUng? We sent thla letter to yowrg rcaders who hanrc nrrltten to us ln the past, Sercral of them passed our request on to frlende and slbllngs, and Jerernlatr and Screna Gfngold publlshed our letter ln thef Ilonesclwlerc Jor kae newsletter, allowlng us to hear from several new wrltcrs. We hope that the rest of you who read what follows wlU be tnsptred to contrlbute your own thoughts. Ttre q/rttcrs' ages range from 6 to 16. We harrc prlnted the wrtter's age only when he or she has tndlcated tt ln the course of the




Wherr I


lk wlth adults thcy aorc-

rnke me *rloualy, but


donL I hatc found lt usua$r depende on

the pereon. But there are thlnga that pu can do thatwlll brlng more rcopecl Onc gmd elrperlena I bad was wtth rry photognphy. About ayear ago I uas looldng for a better canEra than n*rat t had, and I *anted to Lnmr rmre about photography, ro I got a book on lt out of the Ubrary and startcd rcadhg. I nener kns tlrere rras eo much to know about the aubJect and ttwas had to undentand. but Itwagrorth tL I thcrr approactred aomc pcople who kncw aomthlng about

photography, and thafa wlrere I wotrld harrc gottcn loet |f I had not rcad up sonre on lt. I dldn't have to fnterrupt thc corrversaflon wfth baslc queaflons llke what an f/etop or an ASA le. Tlrc f,rat peraon I asked was a lreroon at my Fttcnde ltfiecUng, but he modestlSr Eafd, 'l mlght own a elngle lcns r=llcx, but

you should rcal$

lnterested ln nahre photography and he a fountaln orrcrflordng wtth knowledge. I talked wlth trlm for an hour, and rlght before we left rny 'lad thankcd hfm for hls ttmc and ln resporurc hc satd, 'It uras a pleaeurc for rne to talk wtth pur rxrn because rmst pcopleJust unnt to potnt and ehoot ard tt ls very rare that I flnd someone who ls tnGrested tn more ttran Juet snapshots.'That rneant tlrat he uns comparlng mc to most adulta he rneets and 1qt tcllrtngl doum to mc at all. \na^s

t-lk to Kcn, m5r son'So

he took me orrcr to trlg son. I ask€d a ferrt qucsflons about camcras and he ansscrcd thcm as lfl was an cqual But erltn tf yourc prepared, aomc pcopleJuat eort of lgnore wtrat you say and

' lk on about wtrat they thlnk For emrnple, anothcr pcrson at my FHends Mccttng une a photographer, arld I wrrrt up to hlmand askcd hlawtrat Hnd of camcra he had. He angrrcred me wtth the names of camoas I hadn't crrcn heard of. Thcn I asLcd hl- wbat hnd of photogaphy he dtd and hc eatd, 'I do portratt photography.' In reeponse to that I qatd, 'I'm mrc tntcrebd ln the nahrre aspect' Ncrarthetes. he went on about howvou could make a lot of unrrcy fr'om ph6tography ln adverdslng ard suctr tlrlngs. But I had nevcr eald anythlng about raatctng rDnqr or adverflstng. Slnce t dtdn't unnt to hurt hle fceltngs, I Just 8afd, 'Mmrn,' at certaln lntenrab, wtrlch I found ls a good rvay to look as f I was underetandlq; what heuras saytng.

Mybest ogcrlcncccna at the carncra stor€ wherc I fu8lly got try camera. Thc pcraon who I bought tbc camcra frrom was GR,OXIING WITHOUT SCH@LING 16I



Florrr Ar1el Sflnurons o;f Tems:

I belterc that fm taken serlousf

tnslde my fao ly, but I'm not alurays takerr serloualy outatde my fardly. A frlend of my mother's ls a wrlter, and fromwhat I can tell, she takee nre aa scrtous\r as she vrould the Preetdent. I llke towrlte, and ehe en@utagies tt, and I gtve

hcr helpful trlnts on her unrk (espectally

alnce I'm a ldd ard she wrltee chlldren'g storles). She congrahrlatee rnc on Iuy poerDa, and gfirco mc tnre ansurcra onwhat she thlnks of thenr.

Another frlend, the ctrildren's

Ubrartan at the ltbra4r cre go b, takes me scrtousfr whcn I tell her about books t want to r€ad and the eubJects I wanrt to flnd. She doeen't Eay, 'Well, I tlrtnk lrre have that bok, go look lt up tn the card catalqg.'She etope herwor* and goca and gets the book I'm loohng for. Soreflma when rny rnother tnvttes frlende of hers ovcr, tlrey talk, and usr-rally thcy t Ik dgftt orer me. Sornctlmes I'll b€ €aylng somethtng, and theyll cay, 'Yeah, t had an experlence Ukc that,'and cut rne off tn the mlddle of what I'm aa5rlng. It makes rc angry, and I wlsh that people tmk lddE more acrlous\r. t thtnk adults shouid thtnk of ldds as short grournups, but unfortunately they don'L Slnce I'm a ldd, rnost g5osrnups don t harrc the decenqr to ltsten to what I eay, and what ldde arcund the count4r are Eaylng. Ferhaps they nerrcr wlll. lf chlldren nrcre ltstencd to rnore often, there uould probably be thousands of nw lnrrcntons, mtUlons of good ldeas, and a

lot more creatMty. It makes


feel, when adulte tgnorc

rre, llke adults stmply don't tneat ctrlldren fatrly. Ifa unfatr for chtldren to be treated Itke atupld th|rgs, that need to be brought up by cMltzed adults. I upuld love to sce thls xrorld change. But unill I do, I'll probably sttll have fun anyway.


In rry fanlly I am trreated serlously. People llsten to what I harre to eay about ercrythtng from what I want for dtnner to my wlshes for the q,orld. But I barrc noflced that moet pcople do not take rne serlousl5r. I am physlcally a stnall person, but I harrc btg thoughtal I dont thtnk that It ts rrcry hnd when I am talldng to an adult and tclltng them sornethlng, and theyJuet eay,'Oh, she's so ctrtel'or'What a smart ltttle gtrl she lsl' or whaterer, and Just tgnore what lt le that I'm saytng. It mal<es me feel put dovm and hurt tnslde. I don't thlnk tt's fatr that grou/nups treat hds llke tlrey'rr lnferlor Just because of thelr slze. A lot of the tlme I feel that I'm belngJudgcd b5r rqr outstde appcaranc\e rather than by my fntclltgencc. Most klds treat me rrcry serlousl5r. I Just wtsh that Srwrrups would too.

Ther,e ore tclo gpounrups who I see a lot who take me aelously. Orre of them ts my Glrl Scout leader, Jan katt, She aluays respccts ry ldeas and suggeadone. She lets me take a leaderalrtp role ln ry Glrl Scout troop and I thlnk that ehe apprcciates lrry tnput. The other ls my lndependent Study teacher, Ihthy Htll. I(athy doesnt treat rne llke a llt0e ldd elther. She alurays asks what I unnt to do and what I'm tnter€sted tn, and she umn'tJuet tell me what to do and expect mc to do lL She nerrcracts llke I'm dumb tf I don't undergtand somethtng on the cornputer, and I appreciate thaL I don't thfnk that I should harrc to untt unfll I'm l8 to be able to vote. I thfnk I lrave enough lntelltgencc to dectdewho and wtrat to vote for rtght nonr. And the're are probably some people orrcr the age of l8 who don'tl When electrons come around I always go to the polls wtth rry parcntg and shrdy what they'rc voUng foi. Sometlmes my dad lets me punch the holes tn h1g fnllot I aluraye untch the neun to fnd

20 out what ts happenlng tn the unrld. Sornetlrrcs thls helps me to Judge what to vote for. When the presldelrlnl candldates s1p tallrlng on TV I llsten to what they harre to say so I can flnd outwhat they may do lf they eryerbecome Pnesldent. I Orlnk nraybe hds under 18 ghould be able to take a test to see tf they're qualtfled to vote. I care aboutvotlng because what the Presldent and elected olllcilals of rry country do has a blg lnfluenc= on rry lfe. They mtght erren start a nuclearwar. So I Ike to knowwho's decldlng my htc - and It'g not falr tf I dont enen get a say tn the



Md (IN:

Several years ago, I becarrr a member of a local computer group. I never had any

problems ln tt, unfll I bccame co-edttor of the newsletter and started gotng to the er(ecudvE meettngs of the group. Itfiany of the actlve adults lmmedtately took the 'correcflrrc parenf approach to me, b€raflng me any flme I rnade a suggeetlon or ralsed a polnL Ttrle dtd not happen to any of the adults, Just nrc. Ttrls went on

constantly, always escabtfng ln lntenslt5r, for nlneteen months before I flnally restgrd. The groupturned outto bewhat lls, I thtnk, a rnodel of our soclet5r - rnost adults urould neeer drearn ofJumptng on another adult, but wlllJump all orrcr any ktd, any ttne, for arrythfng. It ls assumed that all adults have domlnance and authortty over all Hds. I have had many nadonally drstrlbuted computer prrcgFams and artlcles, and beause of that I hanrc come lnto very close contact wtth marry adults outstde of the local computer grcup. Some lsrow I am a Hd and edll treat me wlth r€sPect, as an equal. I harre bccorne good frlends wtth many people of thls type.

Sornc-people tn the communtty brush nre olf or disil<e tne, sorne because of my

vlews on certaln lssuee ln the communlty, but many bccause of rq7 age. Tlren tlrere arc thogc who don't know rqr age, and thus trcat rre lke an adult. One lnter€stlng thtng lve dtscovered ls that once l\rc garnd a pcraon's respect because of my uror*, when they dtscorrcr rr5r age, tlrey contlnue to tr€at rrrc as an equal (after getflng orrcr tlre lnltlal surprlse that I'm not an adult), whereas I thfnk ttrat xtould not have been the casc had they known from the outset that I ums not an adult' One of the morc blatant examples of

ane-dtscrtnlnafion I harrc

eeef,r rvas wherr,

aFout two years ago, a local omputer store adrrcrtlscd for a part-tlrc employee. I

\r,ent tn to talk to them about the posltlon, and they wouldn't errcn acknonrledge me because ofmy age. No attenflon was glven to whether or not I could handle theJob as soon as they hcard my age (thetr flrst, and only, quesHon), they tumed awaY. t wlsh that sorne of the legal restrtcflons on age utere remorrcd. For tnstance' the drtver'i llcense: Itou can't get a llcense unfllyou are 16, yet there are eome ldds undei l6who could do a betterJob of drMng tham gome adults. It would be nlcr, t thlnli, lf the gorrcrnment could gtve art fndMdual rerderv of eactr case. But, on the other lrand, I can see the rcason for the age

ltrnlt - wlthout tt, thc.y rdght bc swampcd wlth ldds unnttng a llcense who ould not

poeslbly drfirc. The problem wlth drawlng arry llne tr that tt ls, for a large part, purely a$ltrary. Why fs ft tlatwhenlou are f5years and 364 days, you aren't allonrcd to drlve, but one day later, at 16 yean, you

would beable to do mreandbe more Instead of befng lower-class dtlzens wlth no sa5r orrcr thelr own llnes.


can? The only legal restrtctton on age that really bothers rne lg that on seelng FFrated movlea. llrere arc eornc R-ratcd monlee that I urculd llke to see, but can't because of the age restrlcflon. Perhaps the age llmlt was lmplemented because they felt that many parents dld not hanrc a sufrclent lerrel of crontrol orrcr thelr ldds to stop therrr from gofng to a morrle that tlre parerrtsuDuld notunrrt them to eee. On tlre otherhand, there ane some G, PG, and PGl3 movleo whlch are, ln my oplnlon, worge than eome R-rnovlee, yet there ls no age restrlcuon on those rnovles. I don't

knorvwhat the solutlon ta. but I wlsh tt

u/ere changed somehow.

Iirom,lerulrnlah Chrgdd (CN:

I alnrays thlnk of the phmse, 'When I grclv up, fm gorng to be...'wlth dtsdatn. I am what I am rtght nowl One thlng I really llke about belng a horneschooler ts that I have tlme to krrc my llG rtght now - I don't harre to slt around ln a classroom for manyyears uratung to be someMY some day. Of course I can't do errc5rthlng a grournup can, butl feel thatl canbe efrecflve at errcry polnt ln rrry Me at mY oqrn lerrel. I havent been tn a posltlonyetwhere I have actually been restrtcted by my age. I feel I may noflce thls rlore as I grow older, but so far tt hasn't bothered rne. Errcn thouglr I won't be able to vote unfll I am 18, I am able rlght now to take at least a llttle part ln the gorrcrnrrrcnt by wrtdng lettere to lnlluence my state's representatfues. - It ls a r€al tr,eat to harrc an adult take me really acrtously. I thlnk many adults see ldds as nonenflfles. Most dont erren pay enouglr attenuon to nre to flnd out whether I'm a gtrl or a boy. Sometlrnee I feel angry that people don t seem to carre who I am, what I arn, orwhy I'm altve, Just because I'm a kld. I\rc also nottced that grosnrups can be extrerrrly rude to chtldren. Ttrey often dont errcn lnclude sa5rlng goodbye


I do feel that I am taken sertously by oldcr people, but tn dlllerrnt rraya. For orample, my pl,ano teacher takea me s€dou8l5l ltke he would arty adull but rny orehestra conductor aort of takes me scrtously but only as a chtld, not ag an equal, wtdch someflmes nrakes me fcel qufte bad. Whereas tdy plano teaclrer talks


rolthrc, rry conductortalke bmeor ot en

rne, and she only lletens to me lf I saldng what ehe wanta me to.

Sornethtng wtttch I really don't ltke, although lt doegn't happen very often, ls

when someone talkr


nrc and they say

tlrtngs llke 'real' rnstead of 'really,' thtnHng that I'll understand better lf they talk fn'my. hnguage (whfch even I dont


drtldren when tlrey're



adults. Tlrere are a Gwadults who do take me scrlousl5r, mostly people who know me well. 0 thlnk the neaaon they know re urell ls that thcy takc nr serlously.) One person who trreats nre ltke an tntellfgpnt

human betng ls our frlend and landlord, Erle Benson-One of the thlngs I espectally Itke about tttm ls that he doesn't treat me hke thts out of Hndness or pollteness ' lt ls lust natural for trlm to treat me ln the saineway that hewould treat a groumuP. He has a tnre lnteregt ln nle as a trrcrson. Gronnrupe exPect r€sPcct from ktda'

but I flnd lt hard to really r€sPect groumups lf they don't reepect ktds' Ktds leam to resoect othera bv belnl resp€cted them' se$es. I thlnk that f ft,orirupa unuld only pay rDr€ attenflon to hds as a group' ldds

really epeald), Moet people relate to me, though, not as an adult or a ctrild butJust as me, whlch ls nlce. I realze that I'm not allowed to do some thlngls, but lt doesn't bother me rrc4r

much. I don't tldnk

lfs falr that childrcn

can't vote. and I'd llke to see that law changed, but lt doesn't bother rne becauee I don't have a cravlng to rote: I Just thtnk I should be able to lf I want to. Adults catl choose not to vote lfthq dont \nant to. Lots ofpeople s€em to harrc nodaed tlrat chtldren hale no reason to do

dtfierent thlngs frrom adults, but rro one seems to harrc notlced that adults have no Feaaon to beharrc dlllerently from chlldren. If chlldren wtsh to bc adults lt ls consldered normal. but lf adults wlsh they urcre ctrlldren they are coneld€r€d rnad. One of my best frlends ls an old lady who plays wtth dolls and gft/es tea partres for her dolls and my dolls and me. Most adults urouldn't dare to act llke that for fear of betng called ctdldtsh. What's so rrcry bad about betng cttlldtsh artyutaf? I thlnk lts much nlcer and more enJgrable than belng llke most grovmupsl



I'm lO, and ltve on Davls-Monthan Alr Forcc Base tn Thcson. When rile llrst morrcd here, the school klds kept telllng rne I would grow up stuptd, and I should be

tn school to be smart I thought theynrcre rtght, and kept begglng rrry rmther to eend me to school. Mom sald no. She told me to wrlte a report on cats, and lf I wrote the report she would send rne to school. I dtdn'twrlte the report, so I dldn't go to school. Mom thought I urculd understand that sch@l can be rcry borlng sorreflmes. Sometlrrrs I upuld harrc to do thlngs I dtdn'twant to doJust because I was ln school, and I npuldn't be able to do the thtngs I wanted to, because theyurculdn't be on the echedule. Then I would harc to go to the prlnc'tpat's ofllce or sonrethtng. later one of thosc schooled frlends sald she wanted to staSr home and be home GROWING


2r taught llke I was. Her parents eatd, 'No, you dontwant to be home taught [ke Rachel, or elsc you wtll grow up to be etupld.' My ftends uould get upset on Sun&ya when thcy remenbercd they had to go to school the nextday and I dldn't. I hanrc nerrcr had any grcwnup tell me I should be ln echool. When I tell gro*nupe I aln homeschold theyare so Eheked thcy are spcectrlces. Wlien I a'n ln storcE and talk to clerks thc.y ask nr wtry I on not tn school or elee tlrcy ask tf tt ts a holtday, No one lras eler hassled me about not bctng ln school. I usually tell them I go to a prtvate school and crc ha\rc a day olf. Somtlmes older peoplc lleten to me

and sometlrcs thcy donL I knov older people are Ustenlng to me wtrerr they a.narrrtr nrc after I ffnlsh a scntcnc"e. At horncechooltng plcntce the adulte take me aertously and lfEtcn to what I trarrc to eay. Most of tlre ttrrre I ftel I am trreatcd ag an adult. A fewyears ago ry brotheruras tnvtted to a blrthday party, and I couldn't go because I uraa too old. I was upsct becauge ltwas unfalrthat agewae the reason I wasn t tnvlted. The youth ccnter on the Alr Force Base has dances for dtffcrent age groups. I would rather these dances urcre open to all ages. I don't thtnk there is any good neaaon for thle. I thfnk t le unfalr to the younger lilde who dont harc dances.

TOO YOIJNG TO GO (TN: Florn &|r M Irrc been toH lm too young to do aonrcthtng marry tlmcs, rnd t'll probably hear tt many tkaea morc. I don"t understand the age llmlt on drfuer's llcensce. My coustn, ryho le 12, knows how to drfue, whtle ry best frlcrd, who ts 14, doesn't harre any earthV ldea how to drttrt I thlnk thcy ehould let arryone who can drtve get a llcense anen |f tlre1r are under 16. There t8 a parf I unnt to go to tn about aweeh at a ntght dub that lg usually cloeed to anyonc under 18, ercept on

Sun&ye whfch fs when thlg parry fB. Daddy sajrs I'm too ]roung, but I really

want to go. Itdy mother doean't let rrrc go to the



61 shopplng center alone, but she let me go wtth a frlend whtch is better

anyrlay. She also doeen't let mcc,€ar rnake-up, errcn though moot of rry frlends do. She sqrs that tf I do ever5rttrtng now, I wont have aqfthtng to look fonrrard to. tn a year or tqD, IU probably thlnk she has a polnt, but rlght now I don'U She das let rrr wcar heels, but not as hlgh as I nnnt, ard Ehf eldrts, but not as ehort as I want. Anothcr amuslng age llmtt At a local

lbys R Us toy store, there la a etgn readtng: 'No one under the age of 16 admltt€d

wlthout parcnt or

Qd guardfan.' My mom asked mc what my phllosophy uae on age ll'r'rts, ard aftei tlltnldng fora momenL I reached ry ans*En 'I

thtnk there should be age llmtts, Just not on me.' About whether adutts tratrc respcct for mq - I'll ghrc you a fcnr mmples. I'm a rrclunteer at the publtc lfbrary, and people always trcat me llke an adult there, staff and patrrona. It'o nlcewhen people have reapect foryotr. But once uy couetn and I GROWING WITHOUT SCH@LING #6I

werrt tnto a ptza.8tore to order a plzza, and when lt uxas our turn to order, the glrl at the countcr (also a teenager) stdpped rtght orrcr ue and began taldng the order of the man behtnd uel I am a formcr rnember of a ballet compdry, and the rcason I qult ts becauae the dlrector had absolutely no rcspect for

chtldren. He dtdn't llke me becauee I waan't completely crushed when he yelled at me. If heyelled at the adulte, he dld lt prtvately so no one els€ could hear hln" When he yelled at the ldds, he dtd tt rn front of the whole company. Aleo, my ballet teacher treated lilds ard adults dllfererrtly. KIdg were pushed hard, yelled at and not gtvcn br€aks. AdultE were treated Hndly and allourcd to rest. Ifa thlnge llke that that realb drve lne clazy.

I'THEY TREAT ME TIIE WAY I ACT" F'rotn Heather Bastlan (MI):

My parents treat me theway I act. If I act llke a llttle ldd, that ls the \yay thcy tr€at me. Horvtten lf I act qutte grcvm-up, then urlr parents treat rne grcrrn-up. I

thtnk ttnt ts pretty falr.

Nop my grandparents, ry dad's Irarcnta, are a dlfierent matter. lf,Ihen I was f I, they garc me a ehlrt wtth Xs, O's and hearts on lt It looked ltke aomethlng a 9 year old would wear, not an I I year old. Yet, at other ttrn6, t1/ grandrna lets me wear colorpd nall polfsh and dangly earrlngs, thlngs m1r mthcr doesn't let rne


that I wlgh I could vote


ttnn f8, |lke when lt ornee

to rcflag for the PregtdenL Howerrcr, rnost of the ttme I ern content to walt undl I am 18 to note. But drMng ls a totally d{Ierent mattcrl I wlsh tbat people could start urcrHng tonard thetr drtr/e/s llc=nses at 14 or 15, Hourerrer, I thfiak that eome people are not ready to drfue wen at 16, llke pcople who spced and/or drlrrc carelesely. I am content to walt unfll I am 21 to legally drlnk. After all, ivhen I am 2l I am only goUE to occastonally drlnk wlne wlth dlnner. So the law about drlnldng legally doesn't bother rne a blt. Sornetlms I wtgh I could yiort at placcs that don't allowyou to uork lf you're under 16. Ho*rrrer, I harrc found three occupaflons now that pay decent npncy and I enJoy them. Slnce the fall of

1986, I haw been apprenuclngwlth an older, rrore expertenced careglver ln our local church tcro momtngs a week. I harrc rccently begun helptng a homeschool motherwlth her three boya errcry Wednesday mrnfng; too. My thlird occupaflon is mre stressful and demandlng. Stnce June, I have taken up theJob ofrnanaglng a newspap€r. It hae been a very euocesaful venture. Kldl\Ieurs cornes out errc5r two or three weckq the cost tre $1.5 for 8 lseues. Many of my eubscrtbcrs are adultg.

RI,'DE SALESWOMAN Nlont lbnmd, Odell oJTems:

I don't feel r€a[y ggod about adults. AdultE feel, I thtnk, thatJuet becauae the1r are blgger, thcnr can takioyer. One tlrne d

salee lady called up whlle my mother and daddy were medltadng. She asked, 'Is

your rnother or father there?' I satd, 'No, they are not here rtglrt


She satd, 'How old are you?' safd, 'Serrcn.' She gatd, 'You're senen and you're there all alone?'


I sald, Tlell, not emctly.



and daddy are asleep.' She sald, 'You can't even getyour story atratglhl ltttle boy,' and hung up. I thfnk chlldren have the rlght to be free lf they ruant. And move lnto a ncnr houge. I also thlnk thcy dont harrc to eat whater€r thcdr mmmy tells them- t tbtnk they should have the rlght to wte. Chfldr€n are scard about growlng up, klnd of. They nronder whether they wlll Itke growlng up. They rronder lf they wlll

wlsh theyurcre g kld qgrtn.

IGNORING CAREER PLANS Fltorrr furcllo. W@er-fuarsleln (ttlY): When I uras a llttle hd people urculd *Thafs nlce,'when I Just smile and say, told them I qranted to be a dancer, Nour that I'm older and I'm serlous about betnt a danaer. and l\rc planned rny whole carreer, people sttll say, -Thafs ntce.'They

don't take me


"EVERYOI{E IS BIGGER" Ftwrt MortoWeircr oJ Neut York CIfu:

Im 6. Somctlrnes my sleterwho ls l7

dasn t let

me do what she ts dolng. Someflrree ghe doesnt scem to really Itsten. Som€tknes I hatre to do thingi I don't urant to or I can't do the thlnga I unnt to do and that rnak6 mc angry. I feel ltke I'm ltttle and weryone else ls btgger.


Patuk MIcM, oJ Mfssor.r{:

I thlnk that hds lO and up should be able to vote, although thry should take a tegt before thry are allourcd to. But they shouldn't note on the mor,e ompltcatdd tblngs. I truV thlnk the law that forbtds P9gPle younger than f B to rrcte ls unJust. Klds as urcll as adultg ehould be ablCto dectde \phat Congressperson they urant, as urcll as what Prestderrt. Ttrough some people ruould gtve chtldren bdbes such ag candy and toys, that should be made lllegal. Ktds should knour a constderable anount about the candtdatee and not lust vote for anybody. I'm 9, and I'm part df the Hqrc*lwletsfor W neturcrk [pO Box 74, Mtdplnee CA 95345) and urc wrtte artlcles about pollflcs all the ttme.

COLLECTTVE VOTING Florr Annlse rllLqer-fuslctn Ny): I'm 12, so rmet adults take mc rmre egrtouely than they rrould a 6-8 year old. About bur months ago I bought i dog a


SllHe Terrler pup narned lhtlln. The womanwho sold herto me letme make a dmm payment and then monthly pay-

ments of $2O. Thfs tle a good example of adults taldng me scrlouely. I thtnk thatlS rs a good age for rnflng, but I thlnk that ldds (school and homeschool) should be able to vote at tlre local school. Whoerrcr won among the lidds would then be counted as tlre school'a vote, and the prtnclpal could go cast the school's vote at tlre same UIIE that he cast trls own vote. [SS: If I understand Annlse con€ctly, under her suggesdon under-18 vear olds would not be able to vote i"arvrauaUy, but uiould be able to cast a collectlve vote through the school.l

GROWNUPS AS FRIENDS Florn Kennan fuwden (IX):

Grownups take me nery sertouslY, except sometlmes they don t belterrc me when I real$ am telllng the trrth. I Just Itke to be around gnoutnuPs. Thry are usuall5r nlcr. I llke to llsten to grownuP frlends. Sometlrrrcs they say rrcry funny thtnAs, and sornetlmes I learn from thern" I r€alty love to tell them thtngs and ask about thtngs. I llke to show grownupe tlrfngs thaf I can do - tt makes me feel tmportant. I llke to go hunttng wlth my dad and wrlte letters wtth my mom. I thlnk of grownupe as my frlends.


the rnailIrg orwhatever lt uraa that she sent honre for ue to do. Nowqrc knour pret$rurcllwhat she needs done and when she neede lt by, ao pcople reall5r rcapect u8, and nrc understand that tf urc dldn't do theae Jobs sornebody else u,ould harrc to. We\rc also helped the ol[ce nrne, and nrc've talte{r gpoupo of ldds to the stream to help them learn about tlre envlronment, eo the people at the Watershed Assoclatlon understand that urc're reall5l serlous pcople and urc're notJust there to fool

around. when you want adults to take you serlousl5r, tt also tnvohrcs ttrne and cornmthnent on your part. If the dlrector at the Watershed Associaflon spent a lot of tlme durtng the f,rst couple of malllngs tr:atntnglus, and thenJust aa we u,ene gettlng faster and better at lt ute declded that we dtdn t ltke tt and dtdn t qtant to do It any mor€, that would harrc wasted her tlme, the ttnre she spent tralnlng us. Tlre flrst urrrc vrc dld a malllng, we took longer than tt would harrc taken the dlrector to do It hersef, but now nrc're actually sar'lng

her ttme.

Also, when you're stepplng tnto

sorcthtng youle nerrcr done before, lfs a good ldea not to Bay, 't thfnk I'll do tt ftve afternoons a week'We etarted nrorldng at the Watershed Assoctadon one hour a Ifs better to see what tfs ltke, tf you Itke who you re worktng for, and then lf lt works out, you c.rn rnake a blgger commlt-




.Ftom Nolconl fuud,en (IX):


I Odnk tlrat grownuPs do take me very


serlous$, especfally nry parents. Outslde

ry fam$

t also feel that btg people respond rrcry well. For ercample, I 1m lgto string flgures. My parents, my bU brotlrer and many grownup frtends are very eag€r to help me and shont me these' I learned a lot of figures from my grandparents and frtends. I ltke to treat adults ltke a frtend, and then thry treat me ttre sameway. I thlnk lt ts better for chlldren and grournups to bc together for a long tlrne. It takes ume to harrc a good grownuP frtend.


Anunda arrd E\nlIA furgsort

Slrdlcor,k (PN:

We\rc had somegbod exlr€rlences bctng taken serlously by adults. We run a horne-bas€d bakery called A & E s Bakery,

and at flrst people would thtnk, 'Oh, tsnt It cute that tlre ht0e ctrlldren harrc a b'kery and balre llttle cooldes,' but then our vlohn teacher needed to bake homemade cooldes for a achool functlon and couldn t do lt, so she called us' Stnce we fllled her order qulcldy and fllled a need that she had, she gave us sorne fr€e adrrcrttstn! by telllng all the people tn our vtolln class about A & E a Bakery. She also told us that she llked our llyers and that our thtngls were well-prtced. We ilso work for our local Watershed Assoclaflon \[/e etarted out betng turo of the three rolunteers, and we had tt sowe could call up the execudrrc dfrector lf we had any dll[culues dolng

Ftom Sharl Btolndleld


13. Stnce



I startcd homeschooltng

full ttme three years ago, I feel I am

respected more by othera because I can erDress rnvself better, Before I started ho'meschoiiling, especlalty ln the last ttto years of public school, no matter what I want a to say I could never flnd the rtght words. I would eturrible around tr5dng to talk and rraldng no setrse at all. The harder I trted, the more frustrated I goL One of the most exasperatlng thtngs ums watchtng the people amund me trSrlng to understand me, More than onc.e I stopped

and sald,

'It lsn't tmportanl'

Now my slster and I harrc spoken to relaflrrc strangers (sornethfng I nerrcr dared to do before). Ttrey are aurprlsed that urc don t talk llke a 'Valley Glrl- about fashtons, daflng, etc. I usuall5r don't mlnd not belng allonrcd to do somethlng becaus€ I'm too youn{. tt doesn t bother rne that I can't rmtc inUl I'm 18 becausc even lf I am able to rnake a good Judgrnent (wtttch I'm not sure t can), not aU tccnagerc younger than 18 would be able to mal<e a good dectston

and take lt serlously. I don't thtnk all l8 vear olds can malc a (ood declston elther. iust bccauee they're l-E doesn't nrean all of a sudden they're mahrre enough. What bothers me the rrPEt ls that adulte and erren other teens tell teenagerg what they harrc to bc. \[fe're told tt's normal to not get along wtth your fa'nlr!', and that you're wetrd tf you do. Klde who enJoy learnrng are called nerds who can't relate to anythfng but a comPuter.

It dlsgusts me that thls ls dl that fs

of hds my age. I'm ttred of thlngs Hds are told they'harrc to harrc,' and what they'havc to look llke.' Belng put lnto a category as a stupld, gtggly, bortng teenager (as that's all a lot of people thlnk of when they hear'teenage/) lrrltates me much rnore than rrot betng able to do sornethlng becaus€ I'm not allourcd. I don't wear deslgner clothlng, stanrc rnyself or argue wlth rrry famlly becaus€ sotnsone says I should. I'm gfad that I'm able to erpreas myself urcll enough to say thls.

HARDER TO TALK TO PEERS notn Pndy MttrplW PN: I r€ally hanrc no trouble at dl talldng wtth adulte. Rather, lt ls the people my own age that I harrc trouble cornmunlcating wtth. I r€ally don't much care about the latest fashlon, cute boys, and rock muslc, all thtngs that most teenagers I have known arc lnterested ln (I say 'rnost'

because sorre teenagiers I lorow, mostly horneschoolers, are lnterested ln tlre same thlngs I arn). I unuld much rather slt and r€ad than 5o shopplng at the nearest mall on a Saturday aftcrnoon. It ts wtth tlre adults I knov that I am able to hold a decent conversaflon. Most of

my attempts to talk about my liavorlte

books wlth teenagers harrc fallen flat, whtle adults someflmes seem to be surprlsed and pleased that I have not onl5l heard of such books but have actual$ read


One especlall5r good rel,adonshfp with an adult that I have had has been wtth rry plano teacher, I(athy Wallace, whom I nally lfke. When we get together for my weekly pl,ano lesson, she talks to me not as a teacher whom I should bllndly follow, but as a frlend who ts sull leafiIlnt herself and ls tmparEng the knowledge she has already leamed to rne. In addtHon to plano, we talk about homeschoollng, muslc tn general, books, and the state of

tlre rrcrld.

Most adults I have come tn contact wtth don't talk dourn to me at all. Instead

they are ready and wtlllng to tell me what they know and I in rny tum am eager to


MORE COMFORTABLE WITH ADULTS F\otrr SEphanle Brcnfield o.f

Perut.sglvonla: Stnce I started to horneschool. I hardly have any tnouble communlcaflng wtth adults. Slnce my conrrcnsaton toplcs have etdfted fiom fashlon and boys to rnore lmportant thtngs, I harrc found tlrat

most adults ltke to llsten to what I harrc to say and talce me serlousl5r. I ltke assocl,aUng wtth adults rather than wlth ldds my own age, because they ale generally less Judgmental and superflclal. I guess thls ts to be expected from some teenagers, but tt doesn't mean I lnve to be that uray. The only teenagers I know who arelr't superflclal and Judgrrntal are the homeschoolng pen-pals I got through GWS. Last rnonth t bumped lnto an old publtc school chum 0'droppcd out'of echool ln the seventh grade). I hadnt seen GROWING WIUIOUT SCHOOLING #6I


her tn tnrc years. Ttre

firlt thtng

ahe sald to

me waa,'Hl. How come you're dressed ao teorqry,?'I uns urcartng a snrcater and a palr

of pants. I wasnt honrcrrcr, covered wtth dentm from head to toc, so I yllas drcos€d 'fancy.' E!€n lf I ltked b€{ng corrcred from head to toe urlth denfm (whlch I don't - I prefer'fancy' dotlres), I @uldn't be for the slmple reaaon that I can't allord tL I dtdn't regard my fiend's remart as a conpllnrcnL I couldn'L the uray she satd It. I felt very uncomfortable. I doubt wry many adults would say somcthtng ltke that, whtch fs wt5r I feel mre comfortable talhng to them. There are a fewadulte I knowwho thlnk anyone under 2l tsn t u,orth Itstentng to. But I'm not very close to thenr, and gtnce I know ttrat tlre rcagon they don't ltsterr to me lsn't b€cause of the grpc of peraon I om, I don t EFt upsct. In fact, I constder thern to be mhsfng out on comethtng, slnce I'm a pretty neat pereonl (And I don't say that XChtly. It has taken mc threeyeare to undo

1Jhs da'm8p the publtc school syst€m has done to my eclf eotecnl I can flnally aay somethlng ltke that and bcllerrc tt.)

On the subject of \ro6ng. Stnce sorc people of voflng age trarrc theJudgment and oommon sensc of a 4 year old, I sce no reason why lt should be assumed that rny scnse ofJudgment ls uDrsc than that of sotneone trrc years older tlran me. I nratch

tbc ne*p ercry ntght and read the cdltortal page evrry day. I am qutte surc that I am reaponslble and urcll-tnformed errougfr to vote for a prestdent or any other publtc ol[ctal. Age ls a pretty durnb quallflcaflon for vodng, slnce a pereon's age doesn't deterrnlne horpurcll he or ehe Judges a candldate. Ttrose are quallfles whlch the government assunrcs people wlll acqulron thelr lSth blrthday. But tt doesn't say anlmrhere ln the Consflhrdon that a rpter rrurst have these qualldee tn order to vote, whlch malres tt a pretty arbttrary law. Hourcver, I am a relatfuely paflent penon (mst of the ."ne) and tm wllng to watt tuio years to vote.

WE NEEI' TIO EIAR from famflfes whose chlldren spend some part of thelr tlme at a parent's workplace outslde thc hsne. Tell us: longyouVe been dolng thfs 'how I honr satlsfled you are wtth the whether the chlldren do thetr work, help the adufts at both how recepttve the others ln ttre are to thts arrargeanythfng else tfiat wlll help us tfie nature ofyour

TIIB EFFECTS OF TELEVISION: INTERVIEW WITH MARIE WII{N Mang Gtf4S rcoders tellus tlto.ttleg teleulsbrL Mang otlrers sag tld dne,g ate sdrugg@ tD cttt

llre utlth llllb q to doun



qt thelr Jamlly's televlsbrt Dleurdlg,. jtdlry It hatd. In tIE Jdlorubtg


brtt arc


lrthntbw. Matb WIrt\ attlror- oJnre


PluS-In Drug {auatt l@e, 6.95 +postJ, fnultes GI{iiS rerdcrs b ertslder the eSet oJ televls|ort qt tlelr lltns:

.a it

Surennrh Shcficr: Hov dld you begtn queetlontng televtston? Were your

own chlldren TV uratchers?

Urrlc Wlnn: I deftnltely lot

twohrcd wlth the queEflon through lntenest tn and concern about ruy ourn ldds'watchfng. We had a televlston set when they urcrc youn& and although I was a q/rlter and had the gyat forhrne of betng able to work at home, I sflll saw televlston as a manrclous opporhrnlty to buy blg chunks of tlrrre. I could plant the ktdg tn front of the machlne, ana actuatty harrc an hour to work, b€cauae they reltably sat there and watched lt. What concemed me was the way they looked as th€y sat ther€. TWo extnernely actlrrc, buey, curloua, nolsy chlldrcn urcre

notlccd that no mattcr what thcy watched, thcy looked thc same way. Thclr trence-llkc vlewlng stylc was the same whether they wcrc watchlng an educattonal progrsm or The



euddenly etrange[ qulct. I can remember the polnt whcn I badly vnnted to radonalEe thfo, to eay, 'What.they're watchlng ls educadonal, ao thts tg flne.'But I noflced that no matter what they watdred, they lookcd thc sarc way. fiet trance-lkl vlerytng atyle uras the game urhether they urcre rratchlng an educaflonal prcgram or



I casre to eee that the problem of control *as Dlne, not thetrs. If I dtdn't turn tt on, they very rarely asked for tt. So I started to Oilnk about televtslon, and I read the research about tts efects on chlldren. sflll hoplng that lt uould hrrn out that televlslon ulas OK I dlsco\r€rcd that.the focus of all the wrldng about televtslon and chlldren uras about pmgram content, so that as far as these ctryerts urcre concerned, my ctrlldren could watch elght hours of televlston a day and sttll be flne, as long as thcy dldn't watch

vlolent progfams. I

knw that

wasn t so. oren wlthout a ree€arch ehrdy. I knew there qlould be eometlrtng c/Iongnrlth thelr apendlng the whole day watctrtng. I declded tha't thfs would be sonrthlng uDrth s'rtflng about, and I hoped that along the rraay I urould make dlsco\rcrte8 that nould help my own fanlly. Once I began thtnldng sertously

about televlston, tlre evldence became overnrhelmlng to me that lt uras not a great etrperlenoe for chlldren, that there was Just no uray I uras gotng to be able to radonallze lt. But I conflnued to see that uras hard for me to ontnol my use of lt


wlth my chlldren.

What happened nexthas happened in many of the familtes I descrtbe tn my books - our set broke, and we dtdn't get tt Bxed. Our ldds u/ere then 3 and 5. I thought about how parents ltued before televtston, and I reallzecl that there must bc other ways for me to get my nrork done - and of oourse there nrcre. I r€allzed later, lmldng back, that my use of televlston had lmrohrcd a lack of trust ln thelr abilftv to play, to be resoureeful on thelr own, ti behave themselves reasonab$. SGl: Let's talk more about why you focus on the e:rperlence of telerrlslon rather than program contenl What about the parent who says, 'We watch a couple of good shorrrs, and we don't see anythlng u/rong wtth that.'

UV: One has to beglnwtth the

noflon, whlch lsn't aocepted, tlnt there ts somethlng addtctlrrc about televlslon watchfng, and that, as wlth otlrer addlcflons, sorne people are rnore nrlnerable to tt than others. There'g addtcUrrc;

llttle research about rohy lfs I penonally bellerrc there le

sornethlng about the actual physlologr of taldng tn televtslon lmages Orat ls unlque, and that seema to rnake us nrant more of lt. It tnvohrcg a sltght defocustng of the eye, wldch curlously enough sounds famflhr tf you\rc studled the physlologr of the hypnoflc trance. Therc's much that urc don't knmr about thls, butJust as you can't strnp$ tell an alcoholtc to stop ddnktng, I don't thlnk you can Just tell people to turn ofr the set. You really need help, sorne Ldnd ofsupport eystern

38: When you talked aboutyour oum eqrcrlenoe, you made lt sound as though Its use, or lts placs tn our llveg, ls addlctlve.

W: I thtnk there'e a sort of mtldly addtcttrrc aspect there that probably holds trre for slrnply because lt's so eas5r to turn on theTV, lt's such an


a\tailable pleasur€.

38: Feople olten ask whether teleylston

Is atgnlf,cantly dllfer,ent from

after thcy\rc rcad thc book, because they have creatcd thetr ouzr tmages, wblch are nowvery real to thenr" very apeclf,c, and

tlre T1r hagee look dtffcrent.



Whlle r€adlng ts not acttrall5r

real llfe - you'ne epcndlngyour tlmewlth

an obJect tbat has strange qTmbols on tt youre tn fact engaged ln a much more actlve proc€ss when you're leadtng, because you'rre cr€atlng the lmages. Readfngcanbe muchmoreuseful to us ln our llves because of thls. When you read a story about a prlncess, you automaflcallSr rnake that prlncess lnto somethlng ln your lmagtnaflon, whereas when you watch a televtston program, Ore prlncess !s that actress. Chlldren are often lndtgnant when they see a televlslon progFam

's new tlle Hug-In Drug Vlklng Pengutn, 198? ls a pracilcal handbook for

engaglng tn No-TV erq)erlments. excErpts ftom the book: "I alw"ays used to tum tlreTVon for my 2 I/2-year-old son Alexander tn the mornfng. Then I nodced durlng No-TV q/€ek that he played ln a dilferent way all rnornfng. He seemed less lrrltable - ln a better mood - orerythlng was entlrely dlfferent. I realtzed lt wasn't Alexander who wanted to watchTV - lturas I who needed to hrrn lt on for htm-' - Parent

"E\rcry tfrrrc I sralked through the llvlng room I longed to slt dounr, relax, and natch dumb neruns of TV. I thlnk I was eulferlng from TV wlthdrac,al qrmptoms. After a fov days, though, I was ugcd to dotng other thfngs wlth my flme." - Tenthgruder

Controlltng televlslon or even ellmlnadng lt from the home entfrely wlll not, of couree, autornadcally lead to famlly happtness. Whlle televlglons addlcttue pr€scrice

puts serlous

obetacles tn theway

of a fulflllfng farnrly llft, tts mcre abs€nct does not guarantee that parents and chtldren wlll suddenly spend nDre tlme togetlrer or dotng thlngs together... Televlslon'a attracflon ls so powerfirl because ft grattfies that passlrrc stde of human nahrre that all of us, adults and ctrlldren, are endourcd wtth tr dfferent degrees. Consequently, an lmportant step to$rard a more acffrrc and satlsfylng famtly Me ts to become anrare of thls passlve pu[, to assess lts ponrcr, and to consclously stnrggle agalnst lt. For most parents thts requtrce a deep commltment to famtly llfe, and a flrm resolve to make thetr chfldren's chtldhood a rlch and dtsflnctfirc exlrerlence that wlll serye as a rresoutce for the regt of thetr ltves, and as a nrodd for thetr fuhrre e.xperlene as parcnts Oremselves. lltlth Elerrtslon under @ntrol, thle can become an achtevable goal wtth an addlttonal beneflu parcnthood too bccorcs a rnore deltgfrtful, more fuif,Utng erperlence. A tnre cornrnltment to the firnlly, wtth tlre lpnulne stmggle egalnst passMty that thfs entatls ls far from easy, But the rerrrards are anpng the gr€atet ltfe has to offer.

33: What la dlctlnct about the tclenlston erpcrlence br children?


Very )roung childrcn, certatn!,

are ln a much morevrrlnerable stage of derclopment - I don't mean to euggcat that ule dont keep derrcloptng all our lfirce, or tbat televlston doeen't harrc an lmpact on adult ltrrcs, I thlnk somoone ought to

researctr the elfect of telerrtstron on rnarltal r€lagons - but ln any carc, I thtnk urc can reasonably speculate that lf you e:rpoce \rery ]toung ctrtldren to an e.:cpertence as pourcrfrrl and as drne-consumlng as televlstron ls for the maJorlty of chlldren tn Amertca, lt wlll have an tmportant ellect on braln chemtstry. There'a no real utay to knowthls, but I have to assurne

that thousands of hours of thts parflcular experlencc are elgntllcanL Ttrere's a gr€at deal of ctrcumgtantlal

errtdence about the effect of televtslon

uatchtng, ofcourse. You hear about certatn pa.ttems so often that you harre to ghre them some crederrce. School teachers who harrc taught longenough that they have seen chtldren who dld not watch telerrlslon at all and then a whole genenatton of cldldren who watch a lot say that the attendon spans of the chlldren who watch a lot ls shorter, that they seem less reeour€eful, rmre passtne - they watt for the teacher to suggest thfngs, for ercample. Teachers keep saylng these same thfngs. Aren now, whenJust about all hds watch, there are dllferences ln how much they watch, and I hear from many teacherg that they can pracflcally plck out, erren before thcy who the ltght vlervers are. Ttrey EOem""t, more curl0us, are often class leaders - none ofthose fears parents harrc about thelr ldds betng soclal welrdos because thcy don't rvatch acem to hold tme, and I thlnk the llght vteeere are eo often leaders predsely becausc they are rmre resouroeful, they thlnk up fnter€stfng thlngs to do, they're more rrcrbal. EO: Ifs hteres8ng that you say they're more rrcrbal, becauee IVe heard


sald that televtslon helps ctrlldren learn to speak, or to lmpro\rc thelr vocabularles.

f,Y: I hear that dl the flme. Therc ls a certaln arrrount of parrotlng that chlldren do of televlston - thcy'll plck up certaln words, or commcrclal Jtnglcs - but the rcason I don t bellerre that televtslon acts as arcrbal stlmulus ls because of ttg one-way nahrre. Chlldren, nery early on, talk to the televlslon, cxFcttng tt to talk back, but very qulckly they learn that tt doesn't, and then, I belleve - and I ttdnk there's a certatn amount of evldence to corroborate thte - they begln to pay a dllferent lcbd of attendon to what cornes out of the TV than they do to a lfirc person. It's a less actlne sort of attentlon. WatchlngTl/ ls not the sanne as havlng a human lnteractlon, and so the rnatedal ts not asstnilated tn the same way, or errcn ln the same uray as words ln books.

There uns one errperlmcnt that ompared honr ctrlldren asslmtlated matertal taken ln from telenslon and

frrom havlng

a story r€ad to them. In tlre

eJrp€rlment, the story uras enctly the samc, eieen tlre reader uras ldenflcal. The

chtldren rrcre testcd aftercrards on thcir underetandtng and rctenflon of the rnaterlal, and there wEre many dllfercnces betrreen the turc goups. matn$ ln how they appltod the material to thelr orm Itrlea. Ttre chlldren wlro had heard the story read to them seemcd much more llkely to thlnk of thelr qm e:rperlences, Ttrcy also retatned more phrases. 8S: When you're readlng, or when sorneone'a readtng aloud to you, you can set the pace of tt $'h1sh 6usf make a


It strtkes me that televlslon must a dlfferent bnd of elfect on llttler chlldren st-FtX becauee th.y"," had feryer real-llfe eryrrlences. tranre

t'F: That to rne ls the rnost potgnant aspect of all thts, the tdea that for rrcry young chlldren televlslon wtll be a sort of prtunry experlence. I can see myself watchlng televlston and brlnglng lnto play rny onrrn prwloue exlrcrlences, but for a ltttle chfld who has not had many otlrer erperlenoes, real Me wlll later be measlpd qgatnst televtslon. Televtston also bccomes a compefltor to other experlence8, so that even ln famlllee that provlde many other cholces, the chlld wtll often prefer TV. This ts very hard on parents - lfg hard to have a chtld reJect lnteresflng thlngs that are olfered because thry urant to uatch TV. 8g: That aeerns a gmd argurnent for

not havlng T\I arrallable ln the llrst place, so you don't have to ryork to make qrerythfng else seem so attracu\re.

W: I thlnk that's true, and I thtnk chtldren themselves plunge lnto those other acflvldes rnoFe wholeheartcdly lf they know T1I lsn't an opflon. It's llke tr5dng not to eat su,Eets - lfs much easter tf they aren't therc to temptyou. S8: Is lt posslble fcr fnmllres to cut dorpn on thelr televlston vtovlng wlthout eltmlnatfng ft enttrel5//

W: A lot depends on whether you have a pardcularly vulnerable vtenrcr ln the famlty, In my obsewatlon, moat famtlles do have one chtld or adult who r€alty ls drauzr to tlre s€t and for whom watchtng moderately l,s much harder. But sorne famllles are lrrvolved tn so many other thtngs that the appeal ofTV ts Ifdted, and lt ls poeslble to uratch ln moderaflon. I thfnk the ldeal way to see teledslon ls as a delfghtful, occaslonal treat.

t$; I lrruglne lt malcee a dlfference tf televlslon ls lntroduced on} when the chlldren are older, so that they do have other thlngs that are already lmportant to them.

W: I deflntte[ agr€e wtth that, and I thtnk ldeally, pre-school age chlldren shouldnt nratch at all, although I don't usually eay thts as a blanket statement. tt's hard to say thfs because Sesons Street has been presented as sonrthtng so GROWING WTIIIOUT SCHOOLING #6I


lmportant that many famlllea wlp would have hrmed on tlds one prcgfatn

88: What are aomc of tlre stnrgglee farniltes face ln dolng wttlrcut TV for a vrcek?

83: You're nw adrocaflng one-weeklong No-TV errpr:rtrn€nts. What l€d to that?

IW: One {rcek is really not enough drc, go lfs mor€ of a consclousnea8-

not ordlnarlbr harc tntroducod televlgion

ManY famllles harc told me that as thcy'd bcen strlgg[ng wlth thelr Just use of televlalorL the set wEnt on the bllnk and thcy dtdn't harrc lt Sxed -Just as I deacrtH ln my own case. Thesc fatnlltes esscntlally do a No-TV enperlrent for aome perlod of tlme, often unfll aomoone elsepresents therrrwtth a narset What I hear then ts tbat wen tlrougfr the faml! starte watdrtng agatn, the pattem has tn some way been broken and the famlly ffnds televtslon easler to contnol. In the one-ureek-long experlments, the famtly ts delfberately plng wtthout TV, but tlre


results are often


8E: Who concelrrcd the ldea of tlrese


W: I thtnk t actually began lt, at leaet ln thte form. It atart€d wlth the Dernrcr No-TV ogerlment ln 1974, and then tn f 977 I dld the frst No-TVurcck at a publlc echol ln NecrYorl$ whldr attmcted a lot of attcnflon. People atarted

getflng ln touctrwlth me, ashng how to do

thls. I c/€nt to Farmlngton, Conncflcut and held a workehop wtth a ltbrarlan and a group of teachere, and

thsr the ltbrarlarr

o4an zed a really phenomenal hrrn-olf tnoMng the wtrole communfty. After

that lt bcgan to gnourball and I would hear that schools all owr the countrlr were dolng lL Tlre crudal part of thcec crqperlments ls thc motfiEtlon, the fanlbr tras to want to do tL There are uiqre thatyou can makc

thts aometlrln6 that chlldren look forflrad to and are proud of - wcarlng a No-TV button, dgnfng a contract - thcsc rftuds urhlch make tt an lnterceflng rather than a punlehmenl The beat nray to do lt ls as part ofa group - a school, a llbrary, a homeschoolng support gpup.

3S: I can Inaglne a gnoup of horeachotng famlller agreelng to try thts ecp€rlncnt What mtght make lt asler for them?


Arcrythfngyou can do to dlstlngutsh thlE urcck from a'No-TV as

putrlslvturt' wcek wtll be tmportanl It

hag to scem llke fun, llke somctlrlng durEu whfch youll rnake dlscorvcrlcs. J thlnk that qEn famlLes ufto don't rntch a lot of TV wtll prof,t from dotng ttrtr thcy may ffnd out that thcy watched rrore tclcrdsion than thcy trad thoughL for f,r a frdly ln the group that doesn't *atdl TV anyway, I thlnk thcy ehorld go ahcad ard parttclpab tn the wcek, kecp thc dlarlcs that orcryorrc

mmple. If therr


88: Ttrat week wlll Just fecl ltke ordtnary ltfe to thenr though.


Yce, but theilr

dlarte may reveal

that thcCr ordlnary Me ls veqr rlctl ard admlrable to thoac wbo are stnrgglng wtth TV.


ratslng e:cperlerrcc, an lllumlnatlon of howTlr affect8 your I\rEa, than a mlracle cure. Fbmtlleo may scre that tfe alfecttng thcdr hde' ltvee ln unye they dfdnt rcallze. For mmple, I know a rmthcr who obecnrcd durlng her No-TV urcek that her chlld, who ordtnartly watctred only Sesanc Straet played dilferentl5r durlng thatwrek. So errcn that one hour of televlsiton a dry had had sonre efrect Ttrts uns a real[r tmportant dtsoorrcry for hcr. Some people obscnrc actualwtthdraunl oymptoms ln eorDe rcmberg of the real$r have to famlly, whlch rs wlry

prcpar€ for thls vrcek ''ou by plannlng new

actMfleg. Another lmportant rcatzadon

people harrc, wtrtch ts dlffcult to dcscrlbe, lc the efiect tlnt telqdston has had on the way they deal wlth thelr chlldren. If the par€nt has bcen depcrdent on telerrtslon, used lt for problern-eoMng, or to buy peace and qutet, that ellrnlnatee the need for thoueands and thousanda of ltttle

tnteractlons beturecn parent and chlld. If you hrrn olf the telwlslon and flnd that yourc havlng a rrcry dllDcult rlme wlth your chlldren, you'ne not enJo!ilng betng wlth them, I thlnk the earlter you make thls dlscorrcry, tlre better. You harrc to And ways of lMng wtth clrildren that E|ake tt pleasurable for orcryone. But In the mearrflmc, wtrlle you'rc Just becomlng cware of these thlnge, lt may not bc muctr


EO: Do moat pcople hrrn the TV back on alter ttre one week?

IV: Very fcnr conclude by throwtng out Ore ect, althouglr a fewdo. A fcnr rprc mkc veV specffic changes, Euch

as agrcelng to harrc trro No-TV daye aweek.

Others slnply bcdn to ontrrol thelr

untchtng a llttle bcttcr.

38: Sorre parents say that thetr drlldren harrc to uatch TV or they won't knorr what the other ldils arc talhng about.

f,9: Ifs rny obscnraflon that the parcnta who are rrcry anrdoue about that asFct of lt are really not factng the fact that they're anrdouc about thelr mzr ue€ of tt, becauee that argumerrt holds so llt0e watcr. You only harc to look at the Hds who don'twttdrTV to scc that Olq\rc profltcd rather than 5cen dernqged by lL My oum Hds us€d to aay, when I asked them about thte, 'l[Ie do uatch aome TV, at our frlcnds'hougco, and you onV harrc to seca programonce to brerrcrbe able to hold lour onm ln a oouvengaflon, bccauee


IY: I thtnk that somedmee lfs OK to hav= a dlfrerent set of nrles for adults and chlldrerr. There are lndeed sorne erp€rlenccs that are flne for adulte and not for drtldren But tt's certatnly unfalr to have the adults watchfng televtglon wlth the hds around, and not lettlng themwatch.

It alco tnterGr€s wlth tlrc adults'lnteracflons wlth the ctrlldren. Watchlrg after the ldds are asleep ls somethfng else - lf you have rrcry young chlldren, for enample, and you\rc decfded thatyou don'twantTV

tn thelr ltrrca, I thlnk tfs flne to agr€e that you can hrrn lt on when they're not around. But I'm not tahng up the questlon here of hw televlston atrets the pa.rents' relaflonshlp. Somc ldds harrc sald to rc,

Ttry areyou

comtng down heavy on the

Hds? Somettmes I nrant to do somethlng

about rry dad's uratchlng and he says he umn't ghrc lt up.'Some parents are reluctant to conslder how thelr own

vtewlng lntcrferes wlth faml! llfe. So tnany AEErtcan rcn uratch football, for


83: Whlch ls usually on durtng what mlght otherwtse be faxtlly Ume.


Exactly, and fanlly tlrre these

prreclous. It ghould mean slmple ttrnee ofJuet sttdng around together, not Just cxdtfng thlngs lfke gotng to the clrcus. To me, tt's destable to tranre some ldnd of lcdsure ttme tn whtch the famtly somdmes doee spectal thlngs but sorcdmes Just enJoya ordtnar5r Me


l,a eo


PEN.PALS ln GWS #60, Pegg Carkeet rnote that her son xraa frustratcd wtren hls lettere to tlrose on our pen-pal llst rDEr€ not anmrcred. We asked tf othere hsd had thfg errycrlencc. Unda Parrtsh of \Vtaconstn wrote: 'I'm so glad PcgS/ Carlcet satd tt flrsL We have had an ldenttcal cxperlenct uelng the pen-pal

lfst I urculd hate to sce

you qutt prtndn4l tt, but a fw words about commltm€nt are def,nftcly tn order. The lack of response to thclr lettcrg doegn't do much to reaasure my ctrlldren that they are lnteresflng to people outslde the


Flom Stephanfe Bromfleld of



was aurprleed to rcad

that pcople on the pen-pal llet q,Erc not nrrlflng back to tlre€ wtro wrote to tlrern I


hanrc Orr€e auper pen-pals that I got frrom your llct and thcyrvmte back rlght away. Sormtlmee younger ldde get all exctted about dotng somethlng ltke wrtdng letters, and then by thc tfme thcy get thetr flrlat letter, they may not care about wrtflng any more. Ferhape younger hds who really want a Fn-pat should try wrtflng to aomeone older. I $'rlte to s6/eral people who are older Oran I, wlth ages ranghg from l7 to 34, and rrltlng to them ls Just as ntce as vrrldng to someone who ls 16.'

88: What do you sqr to parents who argue that whlle TV may be harmful to young chlldren, lfg OK for adults to

And from Amelfa Acheson of $rashlngton: 'My daughters, lla and Elea. lorrc the p€n-pal llst. When GWS arrfircs 1n

thcy're all the sorrr.' It's tnportant not to bc emugabout not havlngTV, ofcourec. Im sur€ that horcchooled chf,dren have already had to deal wtth thls balance of betng nelther apologeflc nor superlor about belng



mll, tm alrrays the last ln ltne to

read lt beause they harrc to go through the llst to sce lf tlrere ale arry lntereeflng prcspects ln thelr age group. Beturcen

therg they hale morc than 50 pen-pals. 'Back tn'82, when I flrst suggested

that they wtte to ldds on the ltet they poh-poohed the ldea" Tlreywere ll and 8, and they er{oyed receMng mall but dtdn't see arry connecflon between that and wrlflng letters themselves. And the thought of puttlng thedr own names on the llst for stranglers to u/rtte to was appalllng. Ttren a stranger wrote to Tla She had seenTla's narrre (and age - therc ls always a shortage of homescholers a.s old as mlne) tn the GWS Dtrrectory and had wrttten to ask lf Tla mlght be lnteregted ln a pen-pal. Tta not onl5r ansurcr€d the letter - both ehe and Elea ran stnlght to the penpal llst and u/rote to other ldds. 'At flrst the letters were slmple, sloppy, mlsspelled. Someflmes I wondered lf lt uns realty urcrth 22a to rlrall a 2-llne letter. But they son developed style and better apelltng.

JOHN HOLT IN GWS The followtng wrltfngs by John Holt ar€ not available anJ vhere but ln Growttg Wlttlro'.rt Schooll4g. Subscrtber3 pay $f per back lssue plus per ordeE non-subscrlbers pay $3.5O per l,ssue.

Alternative Schools - GWS #17 Cancer - #43 College experience - #52 Competition - #55 "The Day After" (film) - #36 Discipline - #37,38, 39 Economy - #36 Fractions - #50 Independence - l+41 Legal Advice - #35 Math - #50 "Mind Not a Muscle" - #35 Piaget - #38 Reading at12 - #44 "Spaceship School" - #34 Suzuki - #41 Why Schools Won't Change - #20 Writing - #49 Unwanted Help - #2I If you lmow anyone who ts lnterested tn John Holt's work but ls unfamlltar udth CWS, please tell them about these back tssues.

'We harrc had sornc of the problems rnenfloned by Peggr Carkeel Some pals nerrer ansurcr€d, others urrcte for a whlle, then atopped. But the glrls dtdn t gtve up. They eent tlrelr namee to the llst and ptcked up halfa dozen or Eo new nanea. They dectded pen-pals urcr,e so much fun thatwhen the next GWS f,)lrectorycame out, th€lr wrcte to rmst of the glrls thelr age on the llsL Soon theyurcrc getflng letters a}nost every day. 'So thank you for publfshhg the penpal llst. It has glwn my daughters a soc{al llfe tn a way that Just meetlng ldds from the same nelghborhood or school dlstrtct could nerrcr do. They harrc learned about otlrer famtlles and other customs and made many new frlends,'

Chlldrcn ?rtrtlng pon-prlr

should nrrlte to thos€ Ugted. To be ltsted, scnd name, age, address, and (please note Itlrrttl) f -3 nDrds on tnterests === fs6 BARILETT (1216745 E Llme Lake Rd, Cedar MI 49621; rnotorgrcles, skateboards, BB guns === Morgan CHALK {4)

Penntn$on [.n, Wnston-Salem NC 27LA6l courtoys & Indlans, Playnrobil ===


CROCKETT, PO Box 67, Walsenburg CO 81O89: Lluvta: horses, rock muslc; Ilorah (8) horses, arl danclng =-=Jody BEER @oy, rO) Gen Del, Lund, BC VON 2CO Canada; detecflrrcs, clubs, lego =- f61a SCHUSTER (Sl 429 Arrrry Rd, konard MI 48038; socoer, atamps, rrystetles -= SPARKMAN, I()4OS 2nd St SE, C8lgary

Atb€rtaT2, OW6 Canada: Tammy (f 2) Pathinders. stngtng, cooldng: Ross (ff)

scouts, sports, cats: PatUAnn (9) cooHn& cats ===Jaclcle Sue (?, honscs, pound pupptes === Catlxy (5) letterurtdng, Barbles === Flemmlngton (3) cars, pets, sports === Fliachel DOUGHTY (12) 4053 Hanna St, Roseburg OR 97 47O: readtng, anlmals, teddy bears

ADDITIONS TO DIRECTORY Hcre arr the addtdons and drarges to the ftlrcctory that havc comc ln slrtce thc last lssue. Our complctc 1988 Dfrectory appcars fn G\[IS

*fl). Our Dtcctory ts not a ltst ofall subscf,lbccs, but ooly of thosc urlo ask to be |lste4 so that othcr GWS readcrs. or othcr lntcrestcd people, may get ln touch wtth thern. lf you would ltkc to bc lncludcd, plcasc scnd thc cntry form or a kS card (onc famtly pcr card). \[/c prlnt bdrdryars of drlldren, not eEFs, If wc madc a mlstakc when cornrcrflngyour chlld's agc to blrth]rcer, plcasc lct us knmr. Plcasc tcll us lfyou would rathcr havc lour phonc number and toctn lgtcd tnsteod of your mdltrg address. lf a l)|rectory ltoflrg fs follorcd by an (Ef, thc famlly le wiltng to host GWS trarclcrs who makc advawr arrar{cmcnts tn trrfdrtg. If a name ln a GWS story Ir follorcd by an abbrwladon tr parcothcscs, that pcrson ls lm thc Dbectory. Wc are hapry to forqrard matl to thosc whosc addresscg ar,c not ln thc Dlrectory. Mark thc outsl& of thc crvelope wlth namc/dcscrtpflon. lssuc, and page numbcr. lfyou don't mark the outglde, wc opcn thc cnrclopc, scc thatlou want somcthlng fonparded, and thcn havc to rcaddress Ore lcttcr and ugc our o\f,n postagc to

mdllt. Whcn you scnd us an addrcss change for a strbocrtpdon. pleasc rcmlnd ur lfyou ac tn thc IXrectory, so wc can drangc lt hcrc. too.

AZ =: Rchcl cAl &John PAJI{ER (Udl f}2l 3824 N Forrgcus, Thcson 85716 =: Lcn & Il{ery ROIITnELD (Bccky/7r) 5O4O NVte Condcsa" TUcaon 85718 CA forth (ZtF 0{OOO t upl =: g1gv. & Pet BRISTO\il (Mcgeo/8O, AlmelEf2,Itrnro.lSTl 4298 Lciglt Av, SenJcc 95124:Wllltan & Susan BURI@ Ocgsc/77. Cattlkr/8f) 465 Dlanond St, San F)larctsco 94114 (Ef := Gilbcrt & Mary OOONI^EY l1ltmlT0,l<athy/731 1523 32 Av. Son Flanclsco 94122:B;tlk FREEIAND. FO Bq 297, l7lil Bod€ga LD, Bcdcgt 94fJ22 := PatV HOLMES & Ket/kr McGOVERN (Shanfl 176, Jttstb,lTa, K6'lD/81) 329€l Folsom St, Ser F}anclsco 941lO -= Wcndy MART|I{A & Blll LEIAND 1Brynl79, Mttes/8rr) 250 Homcstcad Ttatl, Santa Ctuz 95060 (lD =: Kurt & Irnl ROSSBACII (Chcryne/ e2, Kclly/86) 10299 Srmol Way. Sacf,amcnto 95827 =: Ann & Hyman SiILVER (lsabclh/el Charbttc/86) 562 Brtght st, san Ftancrsco gaig, (drange) := I(em TTJRNER (Rarnman/ 76, DrrEsn/78) FO Bq 942. Gualab 95445 (Il) CA. Aorth lZlp to eaOOOl -- Famcla &

Mfched BOSiSTELL (Shares,l76, JoldranlTa,

Martnda/8O, Canaan/8{!, faydrea/8q f 455f Blourcn St. Hanford 9{Xr3O (drdtggl := John & G I{IRXII{M fl}acyl85, Alcxa/8? FO Box 30768, Santa Barbara Sll30:= Ramona & hcston MELUER (Slmonlta/8f , Sarah/83) 38459 5 St W 9272, Palmdalc 9t1550 := Erlka THOST & Thomas REAPER ffttstan/86, Clarcnce/8Z 3866 CqetcrAv, Santa Barbara 931




Joc &Dec HUBBERf (Andrerr/7s)

BG 6. Ramah 808:]2 Cf =: Mart & Loulou KANE (Cornclta/82) l3 Fox Rrn Ln S, Ncstown 06470 : John &


Ibthy LcDONNE (Kyle/&). Jmtne | 8 l aa Ha ry

St, Mandrcstcf, 06040 (El FL:= Bob & Tlna FARglltEIL (Efzabcth/ 89, Ertc/66) 39q) Chalet $rzannc Dr, Lake Wales 338a9 m =- Wlltan & Ga1IJORGENSIEN (Brcnt,/8f 34981


Iancc/84) 2al5


27 St, Ft Plcrcc

HI =: Shr & Suc DOUGIAS (Molly/8{l) 786997F Mamalahoa lIury. Holualoa 96725 Fl lL:= Brucc & Sharon BOYD (Branduln/ 78, Aurora/8l, Martah/84! l32l 4 St, Mollne 6f265 m := Chgck & Mary FRIEDL (Nathan/ 76, Adaml7gl l3l3 Clcvcland, hanstdr 6(}2(}2 =: I(athy & Bob XRUQ( Elcldl/80, I(auc/83, Jullc/8s) 34713 S chrcago Rd, Wllmk4[on 6(Xal-973f (Et := Dana & Shawrra WTIITMAN (Cotby/73, Joshua/76, Marcus/&3f 2O1, W Garffcld Av. Bartonvlllc 61607 llf := Mary & Tom cO\[tAN (AJl74, Nathan/77, Josh-Paul/8o, Jakc l82l 1626 F)ancls Rd, Ftanklfn 46131 := Cann & Savtlla HUIFMAN (I(atrtn /7e, Blcr$atnb:l79. Patrlsha/ 80. Tlcwa/82) JACKSDN CO HOME EDUCATORS. 7fS W Sprlng St, Brownetown 47220 Fll

ID:= Ndl & Llrda CRANDAII Qq/71, Justrn/861 3O8 Foptar Dr. LuSy 20€57 fit := Ann & flon fTcARMON (Bcllc/8l. McCarnlc/84) 241 Dlll Av. Fredcrlck 2l70r Fl : Danlel & Sendre GRO\/EMAN lAhldrel 76, Iereel | 77,

Johannah/78, Judah/79, Danlcl/8f ,Abr:aham,/ 8{1. Chavla/86) 2650 CoryTecr, Whcatryr 2O902 fA =: Susan & Fetcr BARIIIESBROWN tDlatn/77l f95 Hryward Mlll Rd, Concord 01742 =: Dcborah CALDWELL & ChcEtcr PENDLETON (John/65, Rob/68. Katc/8{!) 14 Mctcelf St, Roslrndale

02l9f 0O:=Patrlcla

DAMARIS (Jcssc/8I, Gabrlcl/861 l4l CcnterSt, Carvcr (Xl39O := Stcphcn & Chrlc GRANMS leJaabal 74, Roscrnary/82, Serah l8A, Jort / 8n South h #1, GrarMllc OIO{!4 (Sl =: Don & Sue GRANT (Flarrcl/81) 24Thrmbull Rd, Ncthampton OIO6O =- Angustlnc & Beatrlce GROWING WTIIIOUT SCHOOLING #6I

n MEDEIROS tBctty-Alm/7g) SE Masr. Homc E<tucatms $rpport Group. PO Box ,l{xl9, Fall Rt cr On723-O403 (ctts4c) f,lon & Jcan MLJRRAY frcgEn/?2. Tara & Jaonah 174 87 fa5rcrwcathcr St, Cambrldgc O1ll38 51s61 6 Chrlsttnc PARIIER (Pem/7f , &reh l79,Vaal^l E4) FO Bo:( el4, Cohast 020215: lan & Iltartl5p VIEIJII (Cart/8ti, Naont/84) 24 Mystrc Av. Mclroec 011176



f,l :

ltutfty ft John DOTiIAHLJE (E,r1r.l&z, I(eflc/8tl) Box 54 Rt l. Lokc Ann 49650 =- Ilsa & KcoI(ANDER (Bcth/8r, Jacob/8{t. Adem/86) 622 WMarn. Brlghton,fAf f e m =: John &

Murld PAIXO (Stmonl76,


tl(\9 Plcasant,

lonta 4a846 (changd m ff,: $rgen BREWE& FAtr|IILIES NI.JRI'RING UFEII)T{G I.EARNERSI. 2452 SouthcrcatAv. Maplcrmd 55119: Chrlr &

(Serafi/e, BdeD/8$ RR f Bo:( 65, 1!ac1' 56f 75 Mlducl & Idarrtct IFSIIN (Alcc/60, lttre.llcllc-I 7z,rtund I e, Chlatqhcr/ 8$ 7f36 Cheotcr Av. Ncthndd 56057-gtgll : $rdc


ChucL & EmOy RINGER Mllow l7A.7Al7S. Tahmha/&l) Bor 75, Jo[ct 5OO4l lfE: Stcphmc HIIRIJY & Robcrt BOLT (EUsEa/E{f . Juta & Krlsfln/86) Uppcr School St Ncw lpswtdr (XnTr (El lTl =: John &Jcan BANGER .^lbm & Elzabcth/8r, R*hcl/8{|, Ian/85) 94Churdr St. II|gh Brldgs 08829: Rrth & TcrryMAtfi,Silff (Sara/?g, Jaccrb/82, Laura/86) 5 Brlanrood Dr. Somcrcct 08873

IfI:= 88mf m :

Laurd & Chuck GLYMPH ($ara/ 69, Aar@/86) 3lD4 Solarrtdgc St, Irs Guccs

P66rl- &.Iohn RANDAIT (Sare/

8r, Rechd/8{!, Ian/84 4r9 Co.mty nd 5569.

Farmlngto 87il0l



&b/8f .Ian&Sola/8tl)Jcaanp Rd *9. Flclda l09ll Dlctme'& VlrgtdeJADCK (Gtmer/

Alee,/8:'. I(rldotr/8s) RD Bor 74, Ilatwtck rrdcolEr & ryhrb PHIII,IPfi $Xml76, Bdan/?9, fficah/8s. Jodeh/8l nD 3 Bd 23tlA' Nsw Bcrlln lg4ll m : Maddclm TODD & Mrclnd Bf,RRoN 0hdc/81. cleytm/8s. Mlddlc/88) 212-227-ll8B (tikw Yort ctty) Fl 79,


$roa & Rendy WAII(ER 6lasmlnc/8S) 9$8tl Acc Rd, Ilcmbck 14466 =- r. & ItB. WEINER O{oral8 I , Isaac/8q 34 f E 5 St, Nap



Yck lfiXXl


I 7 4.Davld | 7 6,Adam/80,

R*llr CIIAIJ( Umtc/?g, frllllcr/8l,

r'art l87l9{OO htngton


$oeton€aleo 27106 OE cll & Bctb $IERMAN [rcntfcr/8s. Collcco/8s) - 216O Mrc Av. Letcwood t|4lO7 : Dwc & Naocy WlNfeRS Gdcgl r/ES. Metthcw/ Ed ffi43 BAdgnrcod Rd, Fcrrlr$urg a9551


Wdh W8lla 9S162

Ma* & Ir'rla


Bcthcl St,



Martlnwtllc 26f55






Pat COWAI{ & Tlmothy BEII BcoJ atnrurl 7A Rt f Box 37A Maso

54856 (El

CATADA: Alo( & Mary MOIIIAR (Ntdrolas/ 7 4,Emrty | ?7, Rrchcl/8O, Itatha/83) 29 Dlll St.


Xttdrcncr M|G fL2



ASI|TON (Ib$rty11/

7a,Hfreryl7fl, courtney/El) 9o7 chcryl Cbclc.


/urcrd boldhcc. 05


NeEy & Burgcr


ADDITIONS TO RESOI.JRCES Ccrfl0cd tcadrcrrsilltng to hdo horrcgJtn BASIIAN. 9rg Hclghb Rd. Odon MI; K-6,7-12 (Ftch, Eqgltdr, rcadtDgl =: Ib0ry DOt{Af,zLJE. ftl$-275-6,J27 g-.tcAr, MI)i K-12.


lhcac pcoplc lrarrc cxpcrlcnccwtth thc follon'tng etrbJccta and are wtlllrg to corr€+ond

slth othcrr:

DoW Badlan (addrers abovc): homc computcfr, Ilathy llonahuc (phorr # abovcl: adop6on, homc computar. lcarafrg dteabtlttlcs, phystcd

iEWEIO FRED CATALOCT Ncw: muslc, math manlpulattves, boots, suppllcs for sctcocc, loclal studlcs, art.. $rrprtscs fc crrcryorc. K-G Tbadrhg Gufdcs. Rcsourcc UdtE thet go far beyud outllm. Standardtzcd tcst prcparaflon. K-12 rpckbooks. LEARNING ATHOME. Box GGl. Horaunau HI 96726. TtO

ntAD wtth

Alpha Om4a Currlctrlum. l\b corolhcot. Br:y

c dl.

H,S. Glm Drstrlbutors, 7251 Bess Hwy. St. Cloud FL 3j1769. nrbJ.



E. OnalaskaWl 54650.



homc schoolcd

oncsl ll|tTAlfT DOIES catalog 0f . SIIELTER SYSIEMS, Box 67-GW Apt6 CA9SOOI. A quartcrlyJoumal


wlth currlcrrlums

ttromc da5rcarc mom of 3 gtncs ocatlve. tcstcd, fun-togcthcc ldcar, handr-oa actMttcs, lO pegcs.

Our hll catalogwae bound lnto cWS *59. Sc?antc copfca are also avatlablc. Wcwtll pay02 tn ccdlt fduscd cuplce (ln

ofJohn Holfr What Do I Ib

On rcqueat, wc wlll photcopy and msil thc GWS revhs of any ttrm lD our cetelog. Scod 5() ccrrts pluE a SASE fc c: add 25 c.cots fc cadr


Tcachcr nccdcd: Altcrnathrc. parcot-gorrcrDcd clcmcnta4r lK-6), act fn Monogahcla Nattonal Fqrst. Sd r€dume: Vallcy School, PO Box 8:t,

ElhnsWV26it4l. amual confcrcncc on carl}t chlldh@d cducaflm (Waldorf-orfcotcd). Apd 8-f O. Wrltc lBP, Bo( 3675. Arm tubor MI MAGICAL YEARSI flfEt



IENTRY NORM FOR DIRT TORY If you would llke to be tn the Dlrectory and have not )'et told us, sepd ln thls form, or use a postcard or 3x5 card (only one farnlly per card).

:= Joyec & Ead SPLTRGIN (Cathcrtne/8r) THE FAl,tlLY IEARNII\K} CONNECDON, I0 Bor( 1934, Durant 747O2

Adults ({Lst ond last names):


Organlzaflon (only tf addrese lg sarne as family) Dce CARIAN (Starc l7O, GlerllrtlTSl

3S56 E Bhrd *5, Bcthldrcrn l&)17 := llasrah & N. Zwt LETTER (R.rth/8r) 3OO Medlson Av,

Chtldren Narnes/Btrth]rears)

Scraatou 1850{l

F\rll Addrege:

tf, =-

Jcan &Ed RODRIGLTEZ tfmothry/ 78, Bcnjenln/8l, Itdlal8s) SOOS TaDglarcod Dr, Commctcc 75428m-Tm &Mdrcllc W(X)DRLTFF 6tddan/6r, Mbaht/8{t, Gracc/86) Bo( 1060. ShallorPatcr ?9gOSt YA : Marlan & noy Seffan Nngbb/ 77, Lawcl./?S, Bnorra/8f . ctcon/E9, cfetcl/e5)




homc shrdy chrdcnts, a bndcrgartcn prosraq phlleophy of chlld dcvelopment. kacdcal ac'thr|tlc! ccotcrcd amlurd thc acasoDs aod frEEvab. Rcsourecs. tf2o pcr5rear. ftANCY AIDRICH, Rt 2, Bd 2675c, Westfod VT O5494.

S.od f2.75 to: FUI| WIE PREECEOOIAR8, 13644 Chdncttc Arrc, Baton Rougc IA 7O8lO.


Were you

If thts ls an addrege ctunge, Are 1ou

_ what y/as prcvlous state? _

ln the 1988 Dtrectory

wflng to hoet

h u/rfdng?




IfEFI TAIILY IEADED suppdts 'altcrnadvc' Frcrettng. Rcprlnttng thc beat from orrcr 40 nagaanca/Dssslcttcrs. til S/ycan bf-mcrthly. Mcndo GWS fc addtumal lssue. ft,ccl Box 534-


Pl€erc - (l) Put ecleratc ltcrns ofbuslncss @ Er?oretc e.hccta of papc. {2) Rrtyournamc and eddrcgE at thc top ofcach lcttcr. {3) lfyou a* qucatbne, crrlosc e rclf-eddr€sscd stampcd envclopc. [4) Tcll us lf ft'! OK to publtah your lcttcr, aad whcthcr to ulc )rour nane wlth thc story. \ilc cdtt lcttcrr fc apacc and clectty.


Blumcoftld'c AIIHA-PHOMCS. Guarantced, No incr progyan at any prlccl Fbcc b,rodnrrc EllJah Coupany. Bd l24agB, I(wvlllc TN37912.



saw thc ad


Lawton 73505




nlnlnu'rr. Plcalc tcll thcsc folko you


n, Mcbnlc/&l) An Waclddrcn 8, Xocrdptcln 4 Wcrt Gcrnrernr

7.tiPF Nlclcln I



Rt 2 Bd 764. Orovlllc 984t4 BtU & Martannc HIrcHEs (Grqory/z. cleE/?g) Rt 7 Box 67/\ Ncw



Elzebctfi/82) NIEI{SMD IG(X}, FO Bo:( 1228:1. Rcecarch TrlsDglc h*2770ft (ctnngd [] *


Kapilccn &I.oO' NEAVOR

good condldonl

Cbudla BARBER& Garry


Joba &


(Anarda/$, I&rll&1. I(arot/85} l4l

(GWS #60)? Yes



trarrcXng GWS readels who make adnancc anagerEnts No _


HOW TO GET STARTED Hcre are some waya 5rou can find out thc lcgal slhraflon tn your statc. ll Lookup thc lawyoursclf, tn a pubtc llbrary or law ltbra5r (aor.rrthousc, law sdrool, ctc.) Lasc are tndcxcd: try'school attcndancc' or 'cducau@, l8 statcs harrc revlscd thclr homc cducaflon lar*g slncc lgSll so chcck thc rcccnt etahrtc chaDgca. Wc hnrc prtrrtcd c gummartzcd thcsc nerr lanrs ln ourbact tssucs, 2) Ask thc statc dcpartrncnt ofcducaflon fc ary lam d rcguhuonE p.ftatdngl to horncechollrg and/or startlng a prtvatc school. ln some statcs (parUcularly Ce" L, IN, I(Y) thcrc are fal rcgulattons conccrnlng prlvatc schools and soyou can callyourhomc a sclrool. lf you arc com.croed about rcvcalggyor.rr namc and addrcgs to thc statc, do thls througlr a frtcrrd. 3) Cqrtact statc or local homcachoolhrg groups. Thts llstryas last prlntcd tn GWS *60, and ls updatcd and sold scparatcly for li2 as part of or.rr'Homcgchooltrg Rcsourcc Lfst.' Sornc groupo havc p,repalcd handbooks or guldellncs ur legal mattcn. Oftcrr. thcec groups can tcllyou morc about thc bgal clmatc tn a state than anyonc clsc can - whcthcr nar le.glslaflon ts pcdhS. and hor thc prescnt law ts bclrg Gnforccd. 4) Contact other famlllcs llstcd tn our I)lr,cctory. Thfs ls parucularly uscful tfyou llvc ln a statc that lcavcs homcsdrootng ttgula6oDa up to tndtvldud school dtstrtcts. Wtrcrr you contact

thcsc famllca, hclp thcm hy havtrg donc somc rcscerch on your own ffrst. 5) In gcncral, lt ls not qdsc to start by asbagyour local school dfstrlc! thcy usually don't know thc law ctther, Bcttcr to gath6 the facb first olr )xrur own.

RENEWALS At thc bottom ofthts pagc ls a form you can uac to rcnaf, JrDur subocrlpdorr. Plcasc hclp us by

rcnortng carly.

Ftrow can you tcll whcn your subscrlpdon orplrcs? Look at thle eample labcl:






Thc nurnbcr that ls undcrllrtcd ln thc

o<anplc tclls thc numbcr of thc ffoal lrsuc for thc subscrlpdon. The Jocs' lub crrptrcs wlth Issuc *6i1, thc ncxt lssuc. But lf$E Trrc to rccctw thclr rcrrwal bcfqc wc sant our fDal ac.cpr.rnt dreEcE to thc malllrg housc (carly Agrtl), thcy would qualS for thc free bqnl lssue. Rcncral ratcg arc thc samc as forncw subccrlpflmr: 02O fc 6 lssucs, t96 for 12 lasucE, t4a for la tlasucs.

wlthout drrge.

Grolp Subrcrlptiolr: all cvplcs arc maflcd to om addreae. Pkasc pa,ywtth oc chccL Hcrc erc the curcot group ratcs (lX mc'n. you gct oDG copy of each lssuc, 2X mcans you gct 2 coplcE of cadr ls6uc, Sxmems 3 coples, ctc,)


lx 2X $( /D( $( 6X

Subocrlptrons start wlth thc Dcxt lssuc publfched. Our carrtrtt ret6 ar,c 02O fc 6 tssuco, $36 for 12 fasues, $4a fc l8 tsgrrca. GWS ls publlshcd cvcry othcr month. A slnglc lssuc ccts

te.5(}. For all subs or orders ofG$rS (not books), plcasc scod drcck or rnoncy orders pqlablc to C,dtttrtg Wlt rutt #@lrng. Fq€fgn pa;5mcrrts must bc clthcc moncy ordcrs ln US funds or chccks drawn on US banb. Wc can't affcd to accept personal drccks on

2yrs. l2 lss.


020 $36 048 $60 ri70 $78

&36 $Ar too $l l2 $130 $144

$48 $90 $126 $156 $180 $216

7X, 8J( ctc: $12

l8 lss.


Plcese aand ln thc namcs and addrcsscs of menrbcrs ofyour group nrb, so that wc can kccp ln touch wlth thcm. Thanks,

Canadbn acrounts, erren lf thqr havc'US funds' wrlttcD on thcm. Outsldc of North Amertca, add lilo pcrycar for alrnrall (otherwlse. dlw 2-3 months for surfac! ma{!. ErcL lrrucr: Wc stronglSr urgc Jrou to gct thc back lsoues ofGlVS. cspec'lal$ lfyou plan to takc your chtldrcn out of school. Marry of the ardclcs arc as uscful and lmportant as whcn thcy wcre prlntcd. and wc do not plan to rcpcat thc lnformadon tn thern. All back tssues arc kept tn

I )'€ar 6l]ss.


lr, loradcd b le77 by.lohn HolL

Edltor - Susannah Sheller Marraglng Edltor - Patrlck Farcnga ContrlbuflngEdttor - Dorma Rlchoux Edltorlal Asslstent - Mary Mahcr Edttortal CoDsultant - Nancy Wallacc Book & Subscrtptlon Managcf, - Day Farcoga Book Shtppcr/Rccctvcr - Patrtck Gould

prlrt. Our ratcs for back lssucs:



of back lssucs. matlcd at crc ttmc to onc addrcss, c$Et 0l pcr lssuc, plus $2 per o,rder. For cxamplc.

GWS #l-6o would cost $62. Thcsc ratcs at! for subscrlbcf,. only: non-subscrlbcrs pay $3.5O pcr


Irdcr #4f

to GWS


112.50: to

#31-&, $l: to

0f .5O. Spcclal: all threelndcxcs, 04.OO. Thcsc prlccs lnclude postagc. Blndcrr arc avdlabh wtth rods that hold GWEi wlthout obecurtng any tcxt. Gold lcttcrs on cwcr. Blnder can hold GWS #l-24 (tilo) or l8 latcr tssuca (lt9.50). Spcctal: 3 blrdcrs wlth rods to hold GWS f I -6(), $26. Add UPS chargcs for all

Holt Asoocletco Bo6rd of Drcctors: Patrlck Fartnga @orporatc Prcsldentf. Mary Mahcr, Tom Mahcr. Donoa Rchoux, Susanneh Sheffer Adnlsors to thc Board: Stwc Rupprccht. Msy Van florcn, Nancy lVallacc


blnders (scc entcr pallca).

Addrsr Chra3cr: lf youre

mor'lng, lct us tnowyour ncw addrcss as soort as posslble, Plcasc enclosc a rcc<rt labcl (or cryy of onc). lssucs mlsgcd bccausc ofa changc ln address may bc replaccd for tN2 cadr. Ttrc poot oflcc destnop )rour mlsscd lssucs and chargcs us a nodffcatlon fcc, so wc can't allord to rvplacc thcrn



9y €jq FE { c)i'

Er t


, ,

J e


Usc thts form to subscrlbc or rcncw to GROWING WIIT{OLIT SCHOOUNG. For renewals. placc thc labcl from a rcccnt lssuc bclow, lf possiblc. lf not, prlnt thc rnfo. Cltp and scnd wtth your chccktr moncy ordcr tn US funds. Or. you may now subscrtbc or rcncrv by phonc wtthMastcrcard or t'tsal catt 6t Z-432- I Sa:!,




subscrlptton _


Glft subscrlption to bc scnt to rrame shorrn.

Account Numbcr (for rcrrorrals): Namc: E cptration Codc (for rcncwals):

Addr€ss (Changc? ycs/no) Ctty, Statc, Zlpr 12 issucs.

6 lssues. $2O


coplcs of


lssues. $

l8 lssucs, $48 (scc chart)

It ls OK to sell my namc and addrq*s to othcr orgenlzauons. GROWING WTil{OUT SCI{OOLING #6I

Growing Without Schooling  

The First Magazine About Homeschooling, Unschooling, and Learning Outside of School.

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