Wednesday, April 27, 2011

No classrooms. No homework.

Wandering around museums, reading, looking, talking. Who knows what rabbit trails you will find.

And there lies the beauty, the learning, the education, the atmosphere of relations , for unschoolers.

For we do not plan a museum trip with firm outcomes in mind.

We go. Out of interest. Out of something to do. We know we will learn... But exactly what it is that we will learn, well, that we are unsure of.

Meandering around a local museum yesterday, we knew we would learn about local Australian history. And geography. And culture.

But our Unschooling museum rabbit trail involved far more than that. It involved literature...

Imagine my bookworm heart being excited to find that Trollope, yes, the Anthony Trollope, he of Barchester Towers fame, had visited the early colony in the 1800s. Had even written in praise of the area. Has travelled on one of the first trains to the area . And that, subsequently, there was a landmark named after him. Trollope's Reach.

A search with google, with my phone and maps, with museum volunteers, showed that no one these days knows of Trollope's Reach.

But what an interesting trail! And on arrival home, I promptly set boys to look for our novels by Trollope, to tall about his books, to discuss married Anglican Bishops, to display and strew some novels on the dining table, to say to Anthony "Oh my goodness, you haven't read Trollope? You must!"

A literary museum rabbit trail, within the realm of the expected Australian history education, within discussions and research on female emancipation, convicts and free men, Mary Reiby, the Arndell family, Bligh and Macquaurie and currency and the novel/TV aeries Sara Dane...

And so, as today we, Anthony and I, sit in the airport, on our way interstate to another museum, this time for the King Tut exhibition, I can't help but wonder what rabbit trails we will find.

Egyptian history, yes.

But possibly there is another window there, a window to a new area, a new interest, to new ideas .

A window to a new Unschooling rabbit trail.

Or.. Perhaps not!

It's all an adventure anyway.

A homeschooling, Unschooling adventure.

No classrooms. No homework.

Museums and rabbit trails.


sarah said...

So wonderful! :-)

Leonie said...


Natalie said...

I love the freedom unschooling gives us. I always feel sorry for the school children at the museum (or zoo) with their worksheets. Thank you again Leonie for affirming my unschooling decision. You are an inspiration.

Leonie said...

Yes, museums become true places of interest, not worksheet driven have tos. Thank you for the comment !

Vicky said...

Your articles are very encouraging, Leonie. Thank you.

Leonie said...

Thank you?

Vicky said...

I'm not sure if you're going to get this comment twice - I'm a bit new to blogging and prone to making mistakes.
I meant thank you for sharing your experience - it's helpful for those, like me, who are trying to build up confidence with unschooling. Does that make sense?