Tag Archives: learning

Review:Project-Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners by Lori Pickert

There are so many things I love about this book. From page 7,

When we talk about project-based homeschooling, we are moving beyond knowledge and skills and probing underneath for the machinery of learning. We are thinking less about the specific facts that will be learned (radius of Mars, exports of Peru) and more about what makes a person want to learn and how we can help them become adept at doing the things they want to do.

Rather than filling our child’s educational plate and saying, “Eat up. Trust me. This is what you need,” we hand them the menu and say, “Order something that looks good to you.”

Resource Review of Project Based Homeschooling, Mentoring Self-Directed Learners by Lori Pickert at LisaNalbone.com

I agree with Lori Pickert’s take on  mentoring self-directed learners and learner-centered education.  I love that she addresses the big picture by looking at learning and how we choose to model our values and gives very practical, tangible steps you can take to begin the process with your children.  She also has  great series of articles on PBH for grownups.

Give the book a read and  you can also enroll in  her upcoming PBH Master Class and take a look at the many other resources she has to offer at her site. I have not taken the  PBH Master class, but have heard and seen rave reviews from both new and seasoned homeschoolers and unschoolers. I participated in two email based classes she offered this summer, on journaling and drawing, and they were excellent.

Lori provides great resources with her  blog posts, forum, classes,  Tip-Sheet, and conversations on Facebook and Twitter. I only wish they had been available back when we began our unschooling journey.

She says it so well. From page 147,

“When you devote some of  your learning time to helping your child pursue  his self-chosen work, you help him become project-oriented. You help him become deeply acquainted with his passions, his talents, his interests.  You help him find out what he can do with those interests.

You support your child’s pursuit of his own self-chosen work, and you equip him with the thinking and learning tools he needs to succeed. You create a system that promotes meaningful work and the means to achieve it.

This is not a one off experience. It is a way of thinking, learning, working and sharing. It is a way of living. “

Is it time to hand your child the menu?   Yell Yes!

 

Just to be clear, I am recommending Lori, her book, and classes on the strength of her work. There is no financial reward or affiliation.


 

How Can I Teach my Kids if I’m Not a Teacher?

But what if I’m not a teacher?

I often hear this question from parents.  When we began homeschooling, even though I HAD a credential,  people constantly asked, “But how will you teach high school when you are only an elementary teacher ?” I know how intimidating it feels.  Don’t let it stop you.

how can I teach my kids if I am not a teacher? LisaNalbone.com
photo credit: Suzie, @unschool

Breaking news: Like it or not, if you are a parent you already are a teacher.

Becoming more aware of what you are teaching and improving how you do it will make you a better parent and help your child learn. It’s kind of scary once you understand that how you live and interact everyday is what you are really teaching your child.

It’s okay. Breathe.

I am not trying to denigrate teachers. But I would like you to consider a few points:

  1. There is no reason to teach the way you were taught, and many well documented reasons from brain research to help learners in new ways.
  2. At one point all teachers were not teachers yet. They started somewhere.
  3. The best “teachers” in our lives are not  always a person or necessarily some one person with a degree in teaching.  
  4. Supporting the learner’s needs and the processes of exploration, growth and connection is more important than teacher training skills or subject matter expertise.
  5. The most important quality of a great teacher is the willingness to be learning all the time, along with and from the student.
  6. One of the most important things we can teach someone is to love learning and how they can learn for themselves, without needing us to plan, manage or direct learning.
  7. We teach the most by how we live our lives.

You may have lots that you want to learn. That’s a good thing.

You may need to have courage to stand up for yourself and kids and go against the grain. This is a great lesson to model for your kids.

There will always be challenges. Just because you make the decision to unschool or homeschool doesn’t mean issues, difficulties and challenges will disappear. They may change, They lessen. But life is full of challenges and opportunities. Every problem is an opportunity for learning and adventure. Showing our kids how to deal with difficulties, determine our priorities, and make decisions in line with our values is some of the most important teaching we can do.

I assure you, if you pay attention, are honest, reflect, and are willing to learn, then you can figure it out.

I give you permission to teach.

But what is most important is that you give yourself permission to learn.

Overivew of the city of Paris at night with Eiffell Tower lit in blue.

What do great conferences have in common with the City of Light?

And why should conferences be on your priority list for learning resources?

Because conferences provide inspiration, connection, and if you allow it, transformation.

Favorite.Learning.Resources.Conferences! at LisaNalbone.com

A  conference story:

The year we started homeschooling I attended the HSC.org Adventures in Homeschooling Conference in Sacramento.  Carrie and I went together since we were both new and a bit scared of leaving the familiar path of schooling.

I was amazed at the breadth of offerings, from inspirational keynote talks to workshops walking you through homeschooling legal issues and how to set up your own private school entity.  We enjoyed panels, sessions, group gatherings, an exhibitor display hall and a used materials exchange sale. Teens and wee ones could take advantage of a sessions just for them. More than 1000 folks participated and I was impressed–and relieved. We wouldn’t be homeschooling alone.   Continue reading