Unschooling myself

College graduation wasn’t as delightful as I’d hoped. I didn’t expect much and looking back I probably should have just had them mail my diploma, but I think I wanted some sort of recognition for the four years and thousands of dollars I sunk into this degree that left me with little in the way of actual life skills. Earlier that semester, I got bored in an art history class so I made a list of useful things I knew. I then highlighted the ones I’d learned in school.

Not many.

Feeling “Ripped off” doesn’t cover it.

Soon after graduation, I discovered the concept of unschooling. It’s hard to define, but basically unschooling is letting our natural learning instincts drive our education. Instead of forcing ourselves through school, we can let interests naturally develop and we will learn what we need in order to accomplish our goals. The heavens open and a ray of sunlight fell across my computer screen and I knew I’d struck gold.

I decided to give this unschooling thing a try and let my intuitive drive to learn lead the way. What did I do?

I read a ton of blogs.

Went for a lot of walks.

Read books.

Watched a season of Supernatural.

Freaked out because I was supposed to be a learning machine now, but I was just wasting time!

Or was I?

My unschooling resources mentioned “deschooling”, which is basically a recovery period. My brain was taking a much-needed rest, but even though I didn’t seem to be doing much, I later realized that I was learning!

Learning doesn’t always look like it does in a classroom. It doesn’t require textbooks or three-ring binders or hard metal desks. I learned all kinds of things from blogs and I researched topics that interested me. My brain sucked up info from everything around me whether it was books, tv, things I observed on my walks, and things I noticed happening in my mind and body now that I allowed them to run free.

So I urge you to take some time and let your mind loose. See the value in everything you do, even if it feels like you’re wasting time.


Posted on September 21, 2010, in Learning and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 6 Comments.

  1. This is the best blog post!! I can totally relate.

  2. I love the idea of unschooling! However, having just entered college I don’t think that I’m quite at the point where I need to be unschooled yet but I will be sure to keep it in the back of my mind when I feel I’ve gotten way over my head. 🙂

  3. Great post, McKella! It does sound like we have been going through really similar things lately. Somehow, we have to decompress from all “that” and in the process, we learn so much about life and ourselves.

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