Before I attempt to describe unschooling, I first should let you know that we weren't always unschoolers. We actually started out with an e-school (that lasted about 2 weeks) and then we attempted to re-create school at home; that was until it was time to "teach" my son to read.

We tried everything and anything under the sun to get him to read. After many days of pulling my hair out, I turned to reading everything about homeschooling that I could get my hands on. That's when I came across information about unschooling. I figured it couldn't hurt to try this new "method" for a year. Fortunately for us, we never looked back. Just FYI, my son did finally start to read a few years later.  Now at 10, he is devouring all types of books from Harry Potter to comic books.

Unschooling started out as a "method" and turned into a lifestyle for us. Which even allowed us to travel, for about a year and a half, along with my husband as he worked.

So, what exactly is unschooling?

Personally, I believe unschooling is hard to define. Even John Holt, the person responsible for coining the term "unschooling", never actually set up any principles or parameters about what it meant. He basically described a life style of using the world as your classroom.  He viewed learning as a natural process that is interconnected with everything you do during your daily life.

To my family, unschooling is not using a set curriculum and doing daily lessons but allowing our kids to explore the world around them through play and following their own passions.

What Unschooling is Not ..
a method
one size fits all
split into subjects

It is ..
passion fill
experience based
real life

Unschooling Books

Anything by John Holt

For additional information check out the many websites and blogs linked in my sidebar. Just remember that unschooling isn't one size fits all, therefore it will look differently from family to family.  The best   definition I've ever heard of unschooling referred to it as the color red (substitute your favorite color); there is many shades of red, however, they are all considered red.

"What is important is not that all readers of Growing Without Schooling should agree on these questions, but that we should respect our differences while we work for what we agree on, our right and the right of all people to take their children out of schools, and help, plan, or direct their learning in the ways they think best". - Holt