Here’s where I miss being part of a bigger community. We have friends who are going to participate in the Village Home program in Oregon this year. From what I can tell, they’re all homeschooling families and the school isn’t really a school but more of a resource center where families are private consumers of educational offerings. She write about it on her unschooling website at Gypsymom.com. I like the idea that the courses aren’t required, families can opt in and opt out of whatever they’re interested in. You can choose to take one or two classes or you can choose an entire schedule. Classes run in one hour increments with about 15 minutes in between classes, so there’s plenty of time to be social, grab a snack, visit the restroom or even all of the above.
I think this is a more effective model of education that takes into account the fact that kids sleep patterns are important (classes start at 9:30 and you don’t have to take morning classes if you don’t want to). It also takes into account the fact that it’s not necessary to count and monitor every bit of information that children are exposed to. VH doesn’t stick to some random and arbitrary required philosophy or curriculum. Courses are offered, described and families can take it or leave it.
I wish the rest of the education world would take a clue from this simple philosophy.