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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Sunday, July 20, 2014

#unrules09 - Sitting through a classroom lecture is not just unnatural for most people, it is painful.

Unschooling Rules 09 is, Sitting through a classroom lecture is not just unnatural for most people, it is painful.
  • Current Scorecard Rating: OMG! Thought-leading breakthrough
The industrial school model of the last few years has mandated students of all ages spend more time sitting through lectures and other classroom situations.  Now, the press is acting as if those people suggesting sitting in classrooms all day is pretty horrible are thought leaders.

On one hand, classrooms are being increasingly understood to be where learning dies.  On the other hand, classrooms meet schools' desire to be more like factories, while MOOCs have experienced a spike of popularity.

Here are some citations challenging the "more is more" model of classrooms:

7/10/2014: Slate: The Body Learns - For years we've been telling kids to sit still and pay attention.  That's all wrong.
  • "For example, Margaret Chan and John Black of Teachers College of Columbia University have shown that physically manipulating an animation of a roller coaster—by sliding the cars up and down the tracks and watching the resulting changes in kinetic and potential energy, as shown in a bar graph—helps students understand the workings of gravity and energy better than static on-screen images and text."
7/8/2014: Washington Post: Why so many kids can’t sit still in school today
  • "Fidgeting is a real problem. It is a strong indicator that children are not getting enough movement throughout the day. We need to fix the underlying issue. Recess times need to be extended and kids should be playing outside as soon as they get home from school. Twenty minutes of movement a day is not enough! They need hours of play outdoors in order to establish a healthy sensory system and to support higher-level attention and learning in the classroom." (Link)
  • "I wasn’t sure if the American approach had ever worked very well. My students in the States had always seemed to drag their feet after about 45 minutes in the classroom."
For the most recent Unschooling Rules scorecard, see: http://unschoolingrules.blogspot.com/search/label/Scorecard

Sunday, June 22, 2014

#unrules50 - Outdoors beats indoors.

Unschooling Rules 50 is, Outdoors beats indoors.
  • Current Scorecard Rating: Yes, but be realistic
6/19/2014: Edutopia article: Expansive Classrooms: Taking Learning Outside
  • "If you had to sit down and write out the top five most inspiring places you'd ever visited, I bet "the classroom" wouldn't be one of them. Create some memorable outdoor learning experiences for your students, and you'll be rewarded, too." (Link)
  • Take Me Outside Day - A Canadian initiative focused on getting students outside for part of their academic day.  (Link)
For the most recent Unschooling Rules scorecard, see: http://unschoolingrules.blogspot.com/search/label/Scorecard

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Presentation: Unschooling Rules by Clark Aldrich

There were some technical glitches at the front of this, but please soldier through them! It gets better. There are also a few pauses as the chat room discusses some issues.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Clark Aldrich Interview with Bert Martinez, on Unschooling Rules and Serious Games

My segment starts around 17:00.

Current Business Podcasts at Blog Talk Radio with MoneyForLunch on BlogTalkRadio

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

#unrules52 - Under-schedule to take advantage of the richness of life.

Unschooling Rules 52 is, Under-schedule to take advantage of the richness of life.
  • Current Scorecard Rating:   Let me think about that, just not now
This entry has been bumped up from Crazy Talk, in part based on the article in The Atlantic: A preoccupation with safety has stripped childhood of independence, risk taking, and discovery—without making it safer. A new kind of playground points to a better solution.

Here is one quote:
  • My mother didn’t work all that much when I was younger, but she didn’t spend vast amounts of time with me, either. She didn’t arrange my playdates or drive me to swimming lessons or introduce me to cool music she liked. On weekdays after school she just expected me to show up for dinner; on weekends I barely saw her at all. I, on the other hand, might easily spend every waking Saturday hour with one if not all three of my children, taking one to a soccer game, the second to a theater program, the third to a friend’s house, or just hanging out with them at home. When my daughter was about 10, my husband suddenly realized that in her whole life, she had probably not spent more than 10 minutes unsupervised by an adult. Not 10 minutes in 10 years.
For the most recent Unschooling Rules scorecard, see: http://unschoolingrules.blogspot.com/search/label/Scorecard

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Jeff Sandefer: Education Entrepreneur is Remaking Education at All Levels

It was during one of the conversations I had with Jeff Sandefer that I got the bug to write Unschooling Rules.  (I still remember the exact moment with perfect detail.)  I believe he is the leading education revolutionary today, and his achievements may better shape the future of structured learning programs than anyone else alive.

Here is an interview he recently gave: