I think that unschooling is possibly the most misunderstood method of home education simply because it is so
far removed from what most of us think of as "learning". Those of us who were raised with the (erroneous)idea that "teaching=educating=learning" which was
force fed to us when we were growing up in the school system have a difficult time relating what unschoolers do
to that narrow definition of "learning". When most people look at unschoolers they see children who are doing
"nothing", but unschoolers see it very differently.
To unschoolers LIFE=LEARNING. Period. There is no separating the two. Education is not something
that is done *to* us. Unschoolers know that anything in life can be "educational" and that learning need
not be boring or force fed. (As a matter of fact they will probably argue the point that if it is force fed
it isn't true learning but merely "regurgitation".) Learning is something we naturally do as human beings. Unschoolers trust
that children will naturally learn what they need to learn to be successful in their lives when the love of learning
that we are all born with is left intact. They also know that learning doesn't end when you finish the last
page of the workbook, or when you finish taking the course, or even when you graduate. True learning *never* ends!
But unschooling goes beyond even the concept of "learning". I think unschooling, especially radical unschooling,
boils down to one simple concept: *letting go* and *trusting*. When we let go of our need to be in charge,
of our need to "teach", and let our children take as much control of their own environment as they are capable of
handling, a wonderful thing begins to happen. They begin to blossom and we begin to relate to our children as *people*!
It's a radical concept but it's a concept which can enhance (and even permanently alter) one's ideas about
children, learning, relationships, and life in general.