How do you go about mentoring self-directed learners?
Lori Pickert’s books Project Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners does an excellent job of explaining how we set up our homes and lives for mentoring self-directed learners. And even though it says “Project-Based homeschooling”, you don’t need to be homeschooling to use this book.
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.”
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.