Post image for 50 Best Unschooling/Self-Directed Learning Posts of 2013

I’m a little late getting this to you, but here is my annual 50 Best Unschooling/Self-Directed Learning Posts of 2013!


Throughout the year while I’m on social media, browsing favorite blogs, or just searching for the latest unschooling news, I keep a list of those posts that inspire, encourage and excite me the most. I’ve read a lot of great things and watched several outstanding videos this past year, and it’s my pleasure to share those with you.

Happy reading/watching!


 50 best Unschooling/Self-Directed Learning Posts of 2013


1. Open Ended Unschooling Resources – by Sara McGrath – I love me a good resource list! Sara always gives wonderful resource suggestions.

2.Video Game Businessman – by Peter Kowalke on The Unschooler Experiment

3. “But I want to Learn, Mom” An Unschooling Adventure Continues –on The Educators Room

4. Homeschooling is about Creating Good Habits by Penelope Trunk

5. What I Think Unschooling is All About by Sue Elvis at Stories of an Unschooling Family

6. What to Do When Strewing is rejected by Sue Elvis at Stories of an Unschooling Family

7. Why So Many Schools Remain Penitentiaries of Boredom – on The Huffington Post

8. 2 Long Term Traveling Moms Talk about Unschooling & Education VIDEO by Lainie from Raising Miro

9. TEDxTeen Jacob Barnett: Forget What You Know- Stop Learning & Start Thinking- VIDEO

10. If Students Designed Their Own Schools…..It Would Look Like This – Post & Video – Washington Post

11. A $1 Million Dollar Bet on Students without Teachers –

12. What Would You Do if You Were Not Afraid? – VIDEO- Nancy Sathre-Vogel at TEDx

13. Write it All Down? By Susan at Learning ALL the time!

14. EdTalks: Kerry Muse VIDEO – some great messages here

15. Five Free Ways to Improve a Child’s Education by Linda Dobson

16. What if We Trusted You: Jerry Michalski – A TED talk VIDEO – this technically is from Oct of 2012

17. How to Mentor a Child with Big (Possible Unrealistic Dreams) – by Lori Pickert – This is an incredible article- a must read!!!

18. Delight-Directed 7th Grade by Aadel at These Temporary Tents

19. In Defense of Skipping College and Enrolling in the Real World an article in Forbes magazine

20.Why Quantity Should be Your Priority – on the – A really great article!

21. Skipping School by Lua Martin Wells – a TEXx Video

22.Genuine Passion for Learning – Alpine Valley School

23. What Do You Do? By Jodi Hollis

24. The Play Deficit by Peter Gray – a well researched, insightful article

25. Taking a Different Approach to Higher Education– from the online magazine MindShift- this approach sounds amazing for teens, too.

26.Don’t Go Back to School: How to Fuel the Internal Engine of Learning- by Maria Popova – a review of the book with the same title by Kio Stark- really wonderful quotes by lots of independent learners

27. How Does Your Child Like to Learn by Pam Laricchia

28. Teaching With YouTube: 197 Digital Channels for Learning – what an awesome resource!

29. Unschooling: Unleashing Freedom by Amy Harrington- Just found Amy’s blog this year about unschooling gifted kids- go check it out!

30. Why Learning through Social Networks is the Future– on TeachThought website- a really interesting list of skills you learn through keeping up with your social networks

31. How a Radical New Teaching Method Could Unleash a Generation of Geniuses – from Wired magazine – really enjoyed reading this.

32. Unschooling: The Secret to Being a Great Leader? – from OpenForum website

33. Combination Curriculum: Unschooling and Classical- by Melissa Flagg- I really enjoyed reading this story of organic learning.

34. Paris was my Middle School Classroom – by Tara Isabella Burton in the Atlantic magazine- Loved this! I’m a sucker for anything that showcases the benefits of combing homeschooling with extensive travel.

35. The Importance of Questions by Wendy Priesnitz – a good reminder

36. Unschooling is the Open Source Way – from Open Source website

37.Methods and Materials vs. “Natural Learning” by Laurette Lynn at Learning Curves- I love her explanation of how instead of viewing some workbooks, textbooks or other more “school” styles of learning as somehow not viable ways of learning for unschoolers, to instead use them as tools that work for your own needs and goals in whatever way that works best for you.

38. Three Years: How I Know It’s Working by Jessica at Teachable Moments– One of my favorite bloggers, Jessica always provides inspiration, wonderfully creative ideas and encouragement.

39. Reflections of a Homeschool Mom… by Karen at Homeschool Girls – Once again, Karen has managed to make me cry! A gorgeous post about the joys of an interest-led learning life.

40. No Curriculum, No Problem– by Jennifer at Little Homeschool on the Prairie – LOVE THIS! My favorite things post to read on homeschooling/unschooling blogs are lists and ideas of resources. Jennifer’s channel is PACKED with wonderful ideas and resources. And she’s an endless source of encouragement, too J

41.  Thoughts on Back to School Time by Monica at Family Trek- One of my favorite travelling/life-learning families around J Always inspiring.

42. Project Based Homeschooling: Steps I Took to Support My Son’s Interest in Carnivorous Plants by Shelli at MammaofLetters. This is a very detailed look at how one family approached a project study. I loved it!

43. Back to School- Homeschool or Worldschool Style by Jeanne at soultravelers3 – I’m always excited to read what this wonderfully gifted girl is up to!

44. To Ease the Panic, Think of a River by Amy Milstein at Unschooling NYC – So true!

45. The Coolest Scientist in America Has Some Terrific Advice for Parents – VIDEO- Go watch this!

46. The Good Things in Life Come Free….but Not Always by Beatrice Ekoko at Natural Born Learners – I’ve learned the truth in this post.

47. It Really Does Take a Village by Laura Grace Weldon- on the importance of community

48. Why All High School Courses Should be Elective – from the Washington Post

49. Unschooling: Am I Ruining My Kid’s Life? By Leo Babauta at Unschoolery

50. School is Optional – VIDEO – Ken Danford at TEDxAmherstCollege


What inspiring/encouraging/exciting things have you read/watched about interest-led learning in 2013?


Hacking Your Education: a Book Review

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Hacking Your Education: Ditch the Lectures, Save Tens of Thousands, and Learn More Than Your Peers Ever Will I few months ago I received an e-mail asking if I’d like to review a book with the above title by Dale J. Stephens. Have you ever heard of Dale before? Well, he’s a pretty remarkable guy. […]

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5 Ways Routines Can Lead to a Creative, Spontaneous, & Passionate Life

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I’ve held an aversion for the word routine for quite some time. The word routine for me conjured up the same feelings as the word schedule-restricted, limited, reduced creativity, permanence, and unchanging. All those feelings made me feel chained down. I wanted feelings like freedom, spontaneity, unlimited creativity, openness, and abundance. Having all those lovely […]

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The Importance of Realigning Priorities

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Back in the fall, we signed up to be part of a Roots and Shoots group. Its group’s focus is on community service, usually in the form of environmental cleanup or nonprofit fundraising and collections. They also provide a lot of opportunities to get close to rehabilitated animals and do other outdoor activities. Sounds great, […]

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Project-Based Homeschooling: An Interview With Lori Pickert Part 2

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Here’s the second part of my interview with Lori Pickert, author of Project-Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners. If you missed the first part of the interview, you can read it here. Besides her valuable blog, Lori also has a wonderful free forum where she answers questions about project-based learning. It’s an incredible resource; I highly […]

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The HEV Project & You Can Do It Too! – 2 New Homeschooling Resources

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Today, I’m going to share two new homeschooling resources I’ve learned about in the past few months. I was contacted by Claudia Orgill a few months ago about a really fun and valuable site she and her husband have created geared towards homeschooling families called The HEV (home education videos) Project. They created a site […]

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Our 10 Favorite Carschooling Resources & Activities

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After spending 30 days traveling these past two months and clocking 72 hours in the car with my family, I’ve come to understand pretty well what it takes to achieve harmony and peace with my husband and kids while trapped in a tight space – at least most of the time anyway! I was a […]

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Interest-Led Learning Isn’t Just for Kids

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*Today my family and I are hiking up the slopes of the Rocky Mountains in Colorado. While we’re gone, I still wanted to bring you some ideas and inspiration about interest-led learning. That’s why I’m so glad I can share this guest post with you today written by my friend Beth Cranford. I was so […]

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My Checklist for Signing the Kids Up for Classes

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I’ve become inundated with catalogs -catalogs from the YMCA and surrounding towns. My e-mail is piling high with private classes offerings – circus classes, theater classes, co-op classes, and science and art classes.   I have tons of newsletters from museums, nature centers, churches, libraries, arboretums, children’s museums that are all screaming at me to […]

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An Invitation to Learning

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Imagine opening up your mailbox and pulling out two invitations. Each invitation is to a party. Each invitation will have food, drinks and entertainment. But each party is very, very different from the other. The first party is to a work function. It calls for formal dress attire and you’ll be talking most of the night with […]

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