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Comment: Shared Knowledge is a not for profit public charity! Check us out on facebook. We provide funding for educational programs in Richmond, Virginia. PLEASE READ FULL DESCRIPTION -USED GOOD- This book has been read and may show wear to the cover and or pages. There may be some dog-eared pages. In some cases the internal pages may contain highlighting/margin notes/underlining or any combination of these markings. The binding will be secure in all cases. This is a good reading and studying copy and has been verified that all pages are legible and intact. If the book contained a CD it is not guaranteed to still be included. Your purchase directly supports our scholarship program as well as our partner charities. All items are packed and shipped from the Amazon warehouse. Thanks so much for your purchase!
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The Unschooling Handbook : How to Use the Whole World As Your Child's Classroom Paperback – April 29, 1998


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The Unschooling Handbook : How to Use the Whole World As Your Child's Classroom + Project-Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners + Free to Learn: Five Ideas for a Joyful Unschooling Life
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Product Details

  • Series: Prima Home Learning Library
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Three Rivers Press; 2 edition (April 29, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0761512764
  • ISBN-13: 978-0761512769
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 7.4 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,888 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Unschooling, a homeschooling method based on the belief that kids learn best when allowed to pursue their natural curiosities and interests, is practiced by 10 to 15 percent of the estimated 1.5 million homeschoolers in the United States. There is no curriculum or master plan for allowing children to decide when, what, and how they will learn, but veteran homeschooler Mary Griffith comes as close as you can get in this slim manual. Written in a conversational, salon-style manner, The Unschooling Handbook is liberally peppered with anecdotes and practical advice from unschoolers, identified by their first names and home states. The book also includes resources such as one teenager's sample "transcript," a typical weekly log of a third-grader's activities, and helpful lists of magazines, online mailing lists, Web sites, and catalogs. Griffith, a board member of the Homeschool Association of California (and the author of The Homeschooling Handbook), names Margaret Mead and Thomas Edison as two examples of those who have profited from unschooled childhoods, and further claims that research validates support for this controversial form of education. The "evidence" she cites, however, is predominantly theoretical writings from noted educators about the benefits of child-centered learning. The handbook suffers from a mild case of the Lake Wobegone syndrome--every unschooled children is seen as an above-average self-starter on the verge of genius--yet despite this overly rosy approach, the book is a well-organized guide for homeschoolers and other families contemplating the "un" life. --Jodi Mailander Farrell

Review

To Unschoolers, Learning Is As Natural As Breathing

More About the Author

Mary Griffith is the author of three books on homeschooling and the parent of two grown homeschooled daughters. She lives in California with her husband and a moderately neurotic Vizsla named BB. She spends time she should be working on her books blogging on children and learning (at www.marygriffith.net) and on fencing (at www.marygriff.com). She also avoids writing by volunteering as a member of US Fencing's national tournament staff.

www.marygriffith.net
www.marygriff.com

Customer Reviews

It is a great book for unschoolers .
SueZen
This book is written in a very easy to read style and is so full of great resources.
S. Joyce
We unschool and I just enjoy reading books about things that I like.
Cherub

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

229 of 233 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 9, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
As a homeschooling mom of two boys, we had heard about the unschooling method but were a little unsure of its effectiveness until we read this book. Mary Griffith does a wonderful job of explaing the concept of unschooling, and the numerous families quoted throughout the book make the concept seem so natural.
There are chapters on math, science, reading and writing, and how to use the world around your children to foster these skills without "doing school". Using the unschooling concept has made the boys' curiosity and wonder of the world around them just explode and has made learning exciting for them. The unschooling philosophy has made learning a 24/7 event at our house, thanks to this wonderful book.
Any family considering homeschooling, or "doing school" at home, or using a curriculum needs to read this unique and fabulous book.
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90 of 93 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 13, 1998
Format: Paperback
I am currently a junior in high school, and I have been looking for an alterantive to public schooling for over a year. This book provides a lot of helpful background information on how to get started and continue with your unschooling. The whole idea behind unschooling is a very creative and revolutionary way to improve the current education system. I would highly recommend this book to any adult looking to better their child's learning experiance as well as to any child who, like myself, has felt that they have been unchallenged by the public schooling system.
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79 of 84 people found the following review helpful By Carol J.Mullaney on April 15, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book was a godsend. At long last a book detailing the way my daughter learned. As a former (public school)teacher I was at loose ends how to educate my daughter. Two private schools, two years at a public school and she was still bored. This book helped me to realize that there was another way to educate her than to duplicate in homeschooling, the way the schools had failed her.This book is well worth the read and the price, if for no other reason than to let you know that you are not alone. Along with Grace Llewellyn's Teenage Liberation Handbook it should be read by every parent and educator.If for no other reason than a different way of looking at the "how to educate children"problem.
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52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Kind Bean on July 5, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was very disappointed in this book. I found Griffith's other book, The Homeschooling Handbook, to be extremely helpful, so I read this book. The majority of the book is filled with quotes from unschooling families, how they do it and why they like it. That would be fine, if I was buying a book that said that that was what it was and not buying a book that said it was a "handbook." Many of the quotes were similar to one another, or just not helpful. Towards the end of the book, I simply skimmed the quotes and finally just skipped them altogether. Secondly, I didn't care for the tone of the book. Basically it felt that the author (and all the families) were saying that the unschooling method is the only right method, otherwise you are hindering your child's growth and potential.

After having read a few overview books of homeschooling, that mentioned different methods, I thought that unschooling sounded interesting, so I wanted to look into it more. I believe that it works for some children, yet I feel that some subjects simply require more structure. And some children actually prefer to have more structure. I was actually appalled at some of the stories in this book and decided that the unschooling method definitely wasn't for me, although I think aspects of it can be included.

On the positive side, it was helpful to see how families homeschooled using this method and it did have useful information, especially if you decide to choose unschooling.

I would recommend this book only if you believe that unschooling is the method for you and your family. Otherwise I would recommend Griffith's other book (which contained all the useful information in this book plus much more) or numerous other overview homeschooling books out there.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful By bamboochik on November 28, 2000
Format: Paperback
It is a 'good thing' that this book is available. Running an egroup list for unschooling parents, I know that it can be difficult for some folks to understand the concept. Also, there are many kinds of 'unschooling' approaches from the 'radical unschooling' families to the kind like mine where we do use worksheets off and on and use a lot of educational tv and computers. I can highly recommend this book for those thinking about using this different way of homeschooling. One thing I can assure you is that your child will never 'HATE' learning.
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30 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Amy on July 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
As an ex-pat homeschooler thrown into the deep end, with frustrated, homesick kids and a pile of unfulfilled charts and lesson plans, I found this publication invaluable. It broke down the false walls of education I had erected myself and smashed my guilt into gleeful smithereens. I found my excitment heightening with each chapter and thoroughly enjoyed the practical feedback from other parents, and especially, their children. Since reading this book I have relaxed, chucked out the schedules and seen my children soar in creativity and passion for learning.

This book is a must for those who suspect there must be a better way than slogging through the mind-numbing 'must-do's' and for those who are cautiously daring to dip a toe into creative schooling, this gives the courage you might need to take the leap. I have seen the value of trusting my kids. And not my own ignorance.
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