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From: cj (
Subject:         unschooling
Date: May 17, 2009 at 5:59 pm PST

Hello all,

I have a son with extreme behavioral disorders. He hit, spit and bit people and threw sytuff among other tthings in preschool, so didn't even last a month there.

I homeschooled with online curriculum for kindergarten. My son ate it up. He read 2 grade levels ahead.

I put him in public school for first grade just to get some extensive testing done that I couldn't afford on my own. Things were a disaster, he got in school and out of school suspensions, and got sent to DAEP Disiplinary Alternative Education Program - an alternative school, where the "hard cases" go. He was sent there at 6 years old! It was one room with a bunch of cubbies in it where kids were just supposed to sit and do their school work all day. It wasn't possible for my son to do that. He's been on every ADHD med type out there to no avail, and with drastic side effects. He is also most likely Oppositional Defiant. He contests ANY athority figure, and isn't intimidated by anyone.

Long story short, so he's not in public school because they wouldn't do anything for him, and he aced everything even with all the time outs , suspensions and such.

I'm back to homeschooling him, but it's highly stressful, he's very smart, and can grasp just about any subject. He was learning history in kindergarten.

Anyway, I want to learn about unschooling, because public school can't deal with him, and I'm tired of the daily wars with him when I try to teach him, I think I do a good job teaching, but he just doesn't care about anytthing, he never really did.

He just wants to play computer games all day, indefinitly.

Can you tell me about unschooling? I know it's child led, but that's assuming the child has an interest in something in particular, that would be constructive, like art, music, science, writing, building things, etc.

I'm really ready to give up, but I think I'd geet in trouble if I simply went on strike and stopped trying to teach him. He doesn't have any ambitions, dreams, hobbies, even any autonomy (individualistic persona).

He just wants to live and breath computer games. He wasn't excited to see a frog or cactus bloom out in the garden. He won't do his online school with out me coaching him. If I leave the room, he'll get an online game going. I can't block them out, because I only have 1 computer, and I'd have to block all search engines and every game site on the web.

He can read any book and absorbs what he reads and becomes a walking encylepidia. He wants my constant attention 24/7, and spouts facts at me from something he read. He can't really have any kind of meaning full conversation. When asked direct questions, his answers are usually "I don't know". I can't even get him to sit down for a 15 minute "class" yet he'll sit and play computer games for hours. I even found an online school that is interactive like the computer games are, he's ok with it untill he has to actually think and write.

What kind of future does an unschooled child have. Colleges all want to look at grade point averages, and such. An unschooled child wouldn't have any would they? My son isn't self motivated, he won't change clothes unless I make him, put stuff away, help unasked, etc. I don't know how he'll ever be self sufficient. He's going to be 9 and acts incredibly immature, he's an instant outcast among peers.


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