unschooling: sneak peek

unschoolinglargeHello, friends! Welcome to 31 Days of Unschooling!Β 

So happy you’re here! I decided to do this blog-every-day-in-October thing on a whim, and I’m super excited!

If you’re new here, I’m Marla. I love to write (and read). I love Jesus and my family and Cambodia and the world. I’m married to Gabe and we have three pretty cool girls (13, 12, and 8). We love to learn and helpΒ people and live life fully (but only full of stuff that really, truly matters). We mess up a lot, but we keep on trying. And I’ll fill you in some more as we go.

I’m excited to get to know you too!

A few items of bid-ness:

1.) You don’t have to be an unschooler to read/like/comment on these posts.

2.) You don’t even have to know what unschooling is!

3.) I don’t want to do all the talking here, so I’ll be asking for your input.

4.) I have an e-book coming out this month, and I’m going to give it to you for FREE! (so stick around!)

Because of the un- in unschooling, I’ve got to be a little fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pantsy here, so I’m not going to lay out the whole month for you (who knows where this will go?). But I do have some ideas for upcoming posts.

unschooling: defined
unschooling: for dummies
unschooling: fears
unschooling: for me?
unschooling: resources
unschooling: college?
unschooling: a typical day
unschooling: the e-book
unschooling: FAQ’s
unschooling: simply
unschooling: worldwide
unschooling: by the dad
unschooling: by Livi (Ava, Nina)

So, tell me:

1. Where you’re from.
2. One thing you ate today.
3. What intrigues you about unschooling.

(I’ll ask you for unschooling questions in an upcoming post.)

31 Days of Unschooling links:
{day 1} unschooling: sneak peek
{day 2} unschooling: defined
{day 3} unschooling: the data set
{day 4} unschooling: good reads
{day 5} unschooling: our theme verse
{day 6} unschooling: my dilemma
{day 7}
{day 8}
{day 9}
{day 10}
{day 11}

70 thoughts on “unschooling: sneak peek

  1. Micheale

    I am Micheale and I live in Northwest Ohio and I am a teacher. My oldest daughter graduated yesterday and has earned $25,000 in scholarships and grants for her first year at college. I am extremely proud of accomplishments and her drive to learn even though she has 10 migraines a month.
    I had a protein shake for breakfast.
    I must admit you have piqued my interest on the idea of unschooling though, not sure I am sold on the idea yet but I am willing to learn and grow.

  2. Angel Carpenter

    From Arizona but currently live in Stockport.

    I am a homeschool mom, my oldest has graduated and my youngest is a junior. I have always wanted to “unschool” but wasn’t sure how to do it.

  3. Pingback: unschooling: the law | Marla Taviano

  4. Laura

    Born in Miami, FL. Raised in Bellefontaine, OH. Currently in the Finger Lakes area of NY.

    Unusually behind on breakfast (it’s 11:15!) – I’ve had coffee and sunflower seeds and am sautΓ©ing onions for kale and bean soup (brunch).

    What intrigues me is how on earth you school children in any facet at all at home without being unbelievably sick of each other (I’m speaking as the mom of an almost 13 year old hormonal daughter) – I’m being nice. What I wanted to say was how do you do it without having your face on a wanted poster? I think that 24 hours a day (12 ? 3?) straight with my daughter might put me over the edge into insanity.

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      I will probably address this question, since you and 800 other people are wondering. I’m an introvert who likes alone time. If I can do this, anyone can. xoxoxo

  5. Pingback: unschooling: our theme verse | Marla Taviano

  6. Pingback: unschooling: good reads | Marla Taviano

  7. Dusty333

    Marla Marla! Put simply, you inspire me! I forget the questions already ?? Food item and hmmmm?? 2 other things? Food first, same thing every morning. 2 frozen bananas, TBS coconut oil, some hemp seeds, Hershey’s coco, glass of crushed ice, almond or coconut milk, BLENDERIZE!!! Ends up tasting like a Wendy’s frosty!!!

  8. Pingback: unschooling: the data set | Marla Taviano

  9. Sharon

    Colorado
    Poppy seed almond muffin (I’m a day late, but had one yesterday and today)
    Marla, you are what intrigues me about unschooling

    I am THRILLED that you are doing this. Both the topic and the 31 days. I read a few days ago about someone doing 31 days of something or other and literally, my first thought was, “I wonder if Marla will do something for this. Nah, I’m sure she’s way too busy right now.” Which you probably are, but I am so happy that my thought was wrong and that you ARE participating. Hooray!

  10. Christine

    Southern raised (Knoxville, TN) transplanted to the midwest, outside of Kansas City, MO. I’m married to a pioneer hs graduate and work with a lot of newbies…
    I have “eaten” my coffee this morning…breakfast is cooking…brown rice with maple syrup.
    Because I talk to a lot of newbies, I’d like to know more about it. In many ways, I think homeschooling is (or should be) “un” schooling…I often tell people life is school and school is life, you teach when the opportunity presents itself…that’s part of the way I see unschooling…

  11. Jennifer

    I’m late to the party, but I’m from Ohio. I ate a delicious Mediterranean wrap from Jason’s Deli yesterday. I work around a lot of educators, have heard you write about it before, and read an article about it in Outside magazine, so I’m interested in hearing more about what it’s all about. πŸ™‚

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      1. Like I told someone else, there’s no late to the party! Welcome!
      2. YUM!!
      3. I love that article, and I’ll be linking it to it/discussing it in one of my posts.
      4. Thanks for joining us, friend!

  12. Kim

    Tucson, AZ…ate a small amount of organ meat in lentil casserole (kidney? I don’t know, I blend it up in bone broth and make ice cubes to throw in all recipes…God’s whole foods have changed my health/life so we don’t eat any junk!)

    My unschooled children (ages 7-22) have done some amazing things they never would have in a school-like environment. One is now a prolife activist, another is a worship leader who has been to other lands to serve, and the others are exploring and blossoming accordingly as well….

  13. Alicia

    Hi! Sorry I’m late to the party!
    1. I’m Alicia from NJ
    2. Yesterday I had some pizza. It was yummy.
    3. Unschooling intrigues me because up until recently I was convinced that homeschooling was something I would never, ever, ever, ever, ever consider. Now that two of my kids are in school my opinions are changing. I am not very disciplined, so traditional organized homeschooling seems totally overwhelming to me. Unschooling, however, seems like something that I could do. Maybe.

  14. Rachel

    1. Cary, NC
    2. A frosty
    3. I am curious about homeschooling and any different ideas about education. Just trying to learn more as we search for what will be the best option for our family in the next few years.

  15. Megan Tietz

    I am so glad you are doing this series, sweet friend! As you know, we are constantly open to whatever direction God provides for our schooling choices, and the wildly individualistic ENFP side of me LOVES the idea of unschooling. I cannot wait to read more about it from someone I trust as much as I love and trust you! XOXO

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      I love that we’re both going to be learning from each other’s series (which seem to be on total opposite ends of the spectrum but really aren’t). And you should read Ali’s comments on today’s post. I’ll think they’ll resonate with you. xoxo

  16. Corrin

    1. From Orange County, CA but been outside of Seattle for 14 years
    2. Green Smoothie
    3. This is my first year of homeschooling. Unschooling has definitely peaked my interest, to allow my incredible, bright, curious, boys to be themselves and have time to learn about the things they love and still have time to just be kids (rather than have public school take up so many hours each week).

  17. Pingback: unschooling: defined | Marla Taviano

  18. Bethany

    1) small town Ohio
    2) creamy red soup for dinner
    3) I love the idea of fostering a love of learning in children. I think it’s fascinating that we are all born with a desire to learn and uncover all the amazing things God has hidden for us to discover. I see that desire squelched in many kids along the way and I’m excited about the possibility of what may happen with my children when they are allowed to freely delve into things they are most passionate about.

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      Your kids absolutely have a passion for learning. It’s going to be so exciting to see where it leads them in life. And they have amazing, passionate parents to guide them along the way. Love you!

  19. Michal A

    1. I live in Columbus Ohio.
    2. I ate Milk Duds. Yay!
    3. I have absolutely no idea what unschooling is so I thought I would tune in here to figure out what all the commotion is about. πŸ™‚

  20. Allison

    1) Columbus Ohio
    2) just finished a pudding of sorts, made with silken tofu, dates, and cocoa powder
    3) We’re on the verge. Teetering, even. Looking for wisdom, inspiration, courage. Mostly, just curious what your experience is like, since every unschooling family does it differently.

  21. Gaylene Carpenter

    1. I am from, well, right now living in High Point, NC.
    2. I just finished eating a Slim Jim. I am known for being a junk food junky and the world’s pickiest eater.
    3. Our daughter and son-in-law are currently homeschooling (she is in her 3rd year of it) their four children (fifth one is also learning, but she is 3, so..) and what intrigues me is how much further ahead each child is for their grade level. The children are also so involved in outside activities with other children so there is no worry on social involvement. As a lifelong learner with a Doctorate degree, I find that learning does not need to be the stiff venue it was while I was growing up. I can’t wait to read your blog and book to learn even more ways to learn and teach that I can share with others.

  22. Joy

    I am from Wisconsin but live in North Dakota with my wonderful husband. πŸ™‚
    I had banana bread today.
    I am looking forward to all the info you can give. My husband and I were both homeschooled but in very different ways, so I look forward to teaching our “someday” children the best way for each of them.

  23. Amy

    1. I’m from Dallas.
    2. A granola bar.
    3. The control freak in me just goes down the road of “what if ….” Thankfully, your kids love to learn, which works out well for unschooling. What if you had a completely unmotivated kid who never wanted to learn … just sat around and played with Barbies all day? Also, one of our kids really wants to be a nurse, so I’m glad her public school (and now university) environment is good preparation for that. What would happen if one of your kids decided they wanted to be a nurse when they turned 18?

    The last thing I want is for my questions to come across as unsupportive. It’s more an issue of getting paralyzed by the “what ifs” … and wondering where you have landed on some of those things. So glad you are opening up dialogue on this issue. I can’t wait to learn more about unschooling!

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      Your questions aren’t unsupportive, friend, just honest. We’ll get into a lot of that. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been asked, “So, what if one of your girls wants to be a doctor?” πŸ™‚ xoxo

      1. Sharon

        What’s the best flavor(s) of Larabar’s? I’ve heard of them and I’m sure seen them in the store. But, never tried one.

  24. Sarah

    I live in Iowa, I ate broccoli cheese soup.

    Unschooling interests me for a couple of reasons. The more I see of the school system, despite amazing teachers, I realize that each child is so unique and learns so differently. Imagine taking a child, letting them learn according to their own God given interests and talents, in place of a forced curriculum. I do wonder how testing works though, if one has to give their child the standardized test, but you are unschooling, how does that work?

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      “Imagine taking a child, letting them learn according to their own God given interests and talents, in place of a forced curriculum.” YES. And we’ll talk about testing.

  25. Ann

    Hi, I’m Ann from western New York.

    My breakfast was a green drink with lots of kale, a little fruit, and some seaweed. (Just reading that would have grossed me out a few years ago, but it’s actually delicious!)

    I am a former homeschooler and will soon be homeschooling my own kids. I’m always interested in hearing about how other families homeschool. …and by homeschool I mean learning at home as opposed to a traditional school.

  26. Sabrina Reinhart

    1. I’m from and once again living in TN (military family on the move).

    2. I just ate fresh eggs (my Mom has chickens), chicken sausage and a banana for breakfast.

    3. I’ve been following you for a while and was around when you decided to pull the girls from school. I’ve home-schooled my boys from the beginning so it’s been interesting to follow along on your story. Can’t wait to see what you have discovered!

  27. Krysten

    I am from Louisville, Kentucky. I have not eaten anything yet. I am intrigued by how you or your girls keep themselves motivated to learn. My son is two and unless something drastic changes he will be homeschooled through elementary school and possibly beyond. I already have curriculums picked out because I am a planner and can’t imagine classifying us as unschoolers because of what I feel would be the unpredictability. I hope this all made sense.

  28. Cheryl Long

    I’m from Orient, OH I ate pumpkin bars today and I want to learn more about un-schooling because I am in my first year of homeschooling our oldest.

  29. Gloria

    I call Columbus home. I ate thick-cut bacon – yum! I’m intrigued by the child-led element of unschooling, so I’m eager to learn more!

  30. Sarah

    I’m Sarah πŸ™‚ I ate M&M cookies tonight (shhhh, they’re for my daughter’s youth group tomorrow)!
    We have 6 kids ranging in age from 18 months up to 12 years. We have always homeschooled. The last few years have been VERY unstructured! So much so that I have to say we’ve been unschooling. I need to follow your posts (and read your ebook) because I’m still in the thick of figuring this all out.

  31. Teresa Henry

    I am from Washington State. I ate carrots dipped in hummus. I currently home school one of my kids (he is 16). I have two that are in community college (one is 25 and one is 18). I have had kids in public and private school (only because I taught there. I have been a classroom teacher and I have tutored. I believe that all kids learn differently and that there is not one way to educate. The town that I live in has a huge homeschool community. I work outside of my home so I do have a schedule, but I love the idea of unschooling. I can’t wait to learn more and see what works for your family.

  32. Jordan Brown

    I’m from South Dakota and I ate some chocolate chip frozen custard today πŸ™‚ I’m interested in Unschooling mostly because I’m not sure what it is. I don’t want to do the public school thing so I definitely want to know more!

  33. Jill Foley

    I’m from Portland, OR (well not FROM Portland, but I currently call it home)
    I ate tacos for dinner because …. Taco Tuesday
    As a homeschooler who LOVES to tell my kids what to do, but hates the reaction I get, I am so intrigued by the idea that they might self-direct and actually learn something.

  34. Melissa

    1 I’m from Wisconsin
    2. I had a lot of things to eat today but the tastiest one I had was toast with peanut butter and honey
    3 I guess all of it. I used to be totally like no way but I recognize now I have learned so much on my own throughout life separate from any formal education. As I have said before, I don’t think unschooling all the way is totally for us, but we are definitely going to be more relaxed/eclectic homeschoolers than necessarily trying to replicate school at home so I think there is some cross over. So much Dom has just learned very organically and so I think maybe a little bit of unschooling is a healthy part of every education (does that statement even make sense? Haha)

    1. Marla Taviano Post author

      That statement makes perfect sense. That’s one of my hopes–that no matter what kind of schooling people choose, they’ll know they can add a little healthy unschooling into the mix.

  35. Jen H.

    I’m from Chandler, AZ.
    I ate some (way too much) really yummy spicy/sweet peanut thai pasta stir-fry that I made. One of my favorites.
    I’m intrigued because you post about it all the time and I still have no real idea what it is πŸ˜‰

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