Author: Ben Hewitt
Publisher: Shambhala Publications
Release Date: 2014-09-09
Genre: Family & Relationships
In this most personal of his books to date, Ben Hewitt shows us how small, mindful decisions about day-to-day life can lead to greater awareness of the world in our backyards and beyond. In telling the story of his sons’ unconventional education in the fields and forests surrounding his family’s northern Vermont farm, he demonstrates that the sparks of learning are all around us, just waiting to be discovered. No matter where we live, Home Grown reminds us that learning at any age is a lifelong process, and that the best education is never confined to a classroom. Hewitt’s story will inspire you to reclaim passion, curiosity, and creativity, not only for your children, but for yourself.
Our children spend their days being passively instructed, and made to sit still and take tests—often against their will. We call this imprisonment schooling, yet wonder why kids become bored and misbehave. Even outside of school children today seldom play and explore without adult supervision, and are afforded few opportunities to control their own lives. The result: anxious, unfocused children who see schooling—and life—as a series of hoops to struggle through. In Free to Learn, developmental psychologist Peter Gray argues that our children, if free to pursue their own interests through play, will not only learn all they need to know, but will do so with energy and passion. Children come into this world burning to learn, equipped with the curiosity, playfulness, and sociability to direct their own education. Yet we have squelched such instincts in a school model originally developed to indoctrinate, not to promote intellectual growth. To foster children who will thrive in today's constantly changing world, we must entrust them to steer their own learning and development. Drawing on evidence from anthropology, psychology, and history, Gray demonstrates that free play is the primary means by which children learn to control their lives, solve problems, get along with peers, and become emotionally resilient. This capacity to learn through play evolved long ago, in hunter-gatherer bands where children acquired the skills of the culture through their own initiatives. And these instincts still operate remarkably well today, as studies at alternative, democratically administered schools show. When children are in charge of their own education, they learn better—and at lower cost than the traditional model of coercive schooling. A brave, counterintuitive proposal for freeing our children from the shackles of the curiosity-killing institution we call school, Free to Learn suggests that it's time to stop asking what's wrong with our children, and start asking what's wrong with the system. It shows how we can act—both as parents and as members of society—to improve children's lives and promote their happiness and learning.
Author: Ben Hewitt
Release Date: 2010-03-16
Genre: Social Science
Over the past few years, Hardwick, Vermont, a typical hardscrabble farming community of 3,000 residents, has jump-started its economy and redefined its self-image through a local, self-sustaining food system unlike anything else in America. Even as the recent financial downturn threatens to cripple small businesses and privately owned farms, a stunning number of food-based businesses have grown in the region. The Town That Food Saved is rich with appealing, colorful characters, from the optimistic upstarts creating a new agricultural model to the long-established farmers wary of the rapid change in the region. Hewitt, a journalist and Vermonter, delves deeply into the repercussions of this groundbreaking approach to growing food, both its astounding successes and potential limitations. The captivating story of an unassuming community and its extraordinary determination to build a vibrant local food system, The Town That Food Saved is grounded in ideas that will revolutionize the way we eat and, quite possibly, the way we live.
Author: Ben Hewitt
Release Date: 2013-06-11
Genre: Business & Economics
When Ben Hewitt met Erik Gillard, he was amazed. Here was a real-life rebel living happily and comfortably in small-town Vermont on less than $10,000 per year. Gillard's no bum. He has a job, a girlfriend, good friends, and strong ties to the community. But how he lives his life--and why--launches Hewitt on a quest to understand the true role of money and mindless consumerism in our lives. By meeting and befriending people like Erik Gillard, Hewitt realized that their happiness was real. What was he--and the rest of a deeply unhappy population--missing? Saved is the humorous, surprising, and ultimately life-changing result of Hewitt's quest, a narrative that challenges everything we know about the meaning of money. Hewitt uses his sharp eye for story, exhaustive reporting, and his own experience living below his means to bring what he learned into an even larger context. How does money really work? How can a bankrupt society move forward? The answers are not what you think, and Hewitt has written an important book for our times.
Author: Scott D. Sampson
Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Release Date: 2015-03-24
Genre: Family & Relationships
The beloved host of PBS Kids' Dinosaur Train presents an activity-complemented guide for caregivers and teachers on how to alleviate common childhood challenges by forging strong connections between children and nature. 25,000 first printing.
Author: Rue Kream
Release Date: 2005-08
Genre: Alternative lifestyles
How do the principles of unschooling apply to television viewing, toothbrushing, and chores? How can we develop respectful relationships with our children? How do unschooled children learn to read? Parenting A Free Child addresses these issues and more in an easily accessible question and answer format.
Radical Unschooling is a progressive parenting philosophy, which includes children learning at home. It is different from homeschooling in that children are not forced to follow curriculum lessons and tests. Radical Unschooling philosophy focuses on trust of a child's innate ability to learn without coercion and invites children to explore their passions. The parent's role is to facilitate their interests and curiosity. The book focuses also on the evolutionary aspect of parenting and human consciousness. We are parenting and educating our children today to succeed in a joyful, productive life by following their passions, not someone else's agenda. The main presentations are School is only one of many choices for our children in our technologically advanced world.Forced learning isn't effective and causes more damage than formerly thought.Respecting a child's choice and autonomy is an evolution of understanding and birth right of every human.Learning and life are not separate. Learning is pleasurable if it is not forced on us.Separating life into subjects isn't necessary or natural.Humans learn from all that they do and experience in life, not just what our culture deems "educational.” The main focus of parenting today is obedience and meeting the needs of the parent. This has to change if we want our children to live in a peaceful world. Moreover, Radical Unschooling is just radical enough to herald a wake up call to our culture because of the truth the philosophy speaks.
Author: Peter Brown Hoffmeister
Release Date: 2013-05-07
Genre: Family & Relationships
Get ready to go out and play… Based on the author’s acclaimed Integrated Outdoor Program, Let Them Be Eaten by Bears is Peter Hoffmeister’s inspiring guide to helping kids enjoy nature and appreciate the great outdoors. Drawing from his personal and professional background as an educator, guide, writer, and father, and focusing on fun rather than fear, Hoffmeister offers an approachable, fun reintroduction to hiking, camping, and all-around exploring that will help parents and kids alike feel empowered and capable. Whether you’re a veteran outdoorsperson, a first-time hiker, or anything in between, get ready to put on your sneakers, turn off your video games, and rediscover the simple, powerful joy of going out to play.
"Wildschooling" is a progressive parenting philosophy which encourages the creativity, curiosity, and joy that children naturally express. It is different from homeschooling in that children are not forced to follow a curriculum and take tests. The focus of the unschooling philosophy is trust of a child's own ability to learn without coercion and encourages children to explore their passions. The parent's role is to facilitate their interests and curiosity. This book focuses also on the evolutionary aspect of parenting and human consciousness. We are facilitating our children's innate potential to succeed in a joyful, productive life by pursuing their passions, and not someone else's agenda. Our goal is to keep encouraging the creativity, curiosity and joy that children naturally express. We focus on child-led, inquiry based experiences and projects, drawing inspiration and opportunities for growth from every day life. The goal here is to get up and get out into our community and out of our shell. Providing the time and space for lots of free, unstructured play. We look to nature as our primary platform for knowledge, reflection, and discovery. This is the beginning of a great adventure for my family, but my hope is that it is also the start of something larger that connects us all. I would love to see you there. Let's grow wild together!
This book presents eye-opening data about the meaning and importance of natural learning. This data -- from neurologists, child development specialists, anthropologists, educators, historians and business innovators-turns many current assumptions about school-based education upside down. The book's factual approach is balanced by quotes and stories from over 100 home-schoolers from the U.S., Canada, Germany, Australia, Ireland, New Zealand, Mexico, India and Singapore. These parents and children are the true authorities on alternative learning. Written for interested parents and educators, this book will also encourage and excite those who want their children to have the benefits, but who are timid to approach home-schooling. This is the only book anyone needs to make the choice and start the process of home-schooling children, and is applicable for young people from pre-school through high school. Studies indicate that adults who were home-schooled are: More likely to vote, volunteer and be involved in their communities than graduates of conventional schools; Read more books than average; More likely to have taken college level courses than the population as a whole; Tend to be independent and self-reliant. The book presents the simple choice to home-school as something much more significant than a homespun method of education. Weldon asks us to consider this choice as participation in a cultural shift toward redefining success; and as a form of collective intelligence with major implications for the future of education. Children are naturally "free range" learners, she says. They build knowledge and skills naturally, within the full spectrum of their daily lives, while observing, exploring and pursuing their interests. This book guides any parent or educator in assisting that process. The book demonstrates: That children and teens can best be nurtured outside of restrictive educational systems; That we can restore what is heart-centred and meaningful back to a central place in education; How networking with others enriches the learning experience for our children; How home-schooling has become a force of positive social change-making the community a better place for everyone.
What does unschooling look like day-to-day? Want to help it take root and blossom in your family? There are a number of characteristics that allow learning to flourish, and in Free to Live I discuss the four that have had the most positive impact on our unschooling lifestyle. Understanding why these characteristics are so helpful makes it easier for parents to choose to respond in ways that support unschooling, rather than undermine it. Learning freely, living joyfully.
Project-based homeschooling combines children's interests with long-term, deep, complex learning. This is an essential experience for children: to spend time working on something that matters to them, with the support of a dedicated mentor. This book is an introduction and guide to creating the circumstances under which children can teach themselves. The author gives parents concrete tips for helping children do challenging, meaningful, self-chosen work. From setting up a workspace that encourages independence to building a family culture that supports self-directed learning to concrete suggestions for a step-by-step approach to inquiry-based investigation, Project-Based Homeschooling shares techniques for mentoring independent, confident thinkers and learners.