Vehicle or destination?

The kids and the jeep

Don’t confuse the educational vehicle with the academic destination. In other words, it is less important whether you unschool or classically educate—neither of these is inherently superior to the other. They are vehicles that get you to the end goal on the map—an educated, self-reliant adult.

If you become overly enamored with the sleek lines of the Jaguar when you really need an off-road Suzuki Samurai to get to where you’re going, you’ll be enormously frustrated as it gets all banged up and scratched.

Figure out where you want to go first (perhaps even just a trailhead with lots of options spinning from it). Then pick a vehicle (or vehicles!) that get you there. There are no moral absolutes about how, only that you make progress toward the destination in a way that doesn’t damage your child, damage your relationship to the child, or that doesn’t prevent your child from getting where he or she wants to go.

Sometimes we are so attached to “the ride,” we disqualify perfectly good educational vehicles because of pride, a quest for ideological purity, or a vague sense that “this is how I wished I had learned” rather than focusing on what our specific child needs in this specific situation with these goals!

Image by Ron Kroetz (cc cropped)

Comments are closed.