offf-topic comments from clouds-in-big-clear-sky Comments that went too off topic, originally appended to, which wasn't about this at all.

ladybug-zen said...

Hello Sandra Dodd,
How are you? I`m new to unschooling, but I`ve already been on several unschooling lists/forums and on everyone of them you are such a controversial character. I`m going to be very direct and ask, what`s that about?

I`ve unsubscribed to almost all because I got so fed up with the constant bickering about you. Please don`t take this the wrong way. I`m not judging you or blaming you in ANY way. I suspect though that it wouldn`t have much effect on you either way. Again, I say this in a positive light.

Your`s was one of the first blogs I found on unschooling and have benefitted greatly from it. Thanks for all the helpful info.
August 11, 2007 7:53 AM

Sandra Dodd said...
-=-I`ve unsubscribed to almost all because I got so fed up with the constant bickering about you.-=-

Lists and forums are unpredictable running water. Maybe better to read than those, or than blogs, would be people's sites—the still pools where the best parts are collected.
   (there are links to over a dozen other people's collected writings there) [Ren Allen's site, now gone]

It's not about other people after all, it's about your relationship with your children, and the principles on which you base your decisions. Whatever you can find that will help you feel strong and confident in unschooling, use it. If your life isn't going as smoothly as you would like for it to, then go looking for more ideas again.

It seems people often go through phases of acquisition of knowledge and peace, and then another seeking phase, in turns.

Different people react differently for different reasons, and I don't understand them all. Sometimes I have a glimmer, but it's not something I can change about the other people. And it's not something that makes me want to change me or my family about either.

My kids are doing well, and I know unschooling is largely the cause of the peace in our family, and I'm willing to share what I've seen and figured out that sometimes helps other families.
August 11, 2007 10:46 AM

Danielle said...
Sandra, your book and essays are very excellent, and awesome tools. But, with all do respect, once one starts talking one on one to you, well, I believe that's where the "controversy" starts. You seem like a totally different person talking to you one on one than you do in your writings.
August 12, 2007 8:19 PM
Sandra Dodd said...
Danielle, you must mean writing, not talking, as we've never spoken in person. If it makes you feel better to think I'm mean, then I still made you feel better! (I'm joking, but yet it's true.) People who have talked to me in person, and those who know me, vouch for me being friendly and writing in my own tone of voice. Those who like to tea-party cooing just never enjoy the kind of discussions I enjoy. I avoid tea-party behavior (real-life or virtual), but if you want it, it's out there.
August 12, 2007 8:29 PM
Danielle said...
No, I don't think you are "mean". I think that in discussions, you just like to challenge people. In your essay writings, there really aren't the challenges. There's just information.
I think that you are friendly in your tone of voice, as you have left recordings on this blog before...
August 12, 2007 8:33 PM
Danielle said...
And for what it's worth, I never really got mad or angry that you challenged my word choices. It's just that because of my upbringing, I am very adimant that I not do things a certain way or think things a certain way just because someone else told me to do it that way. While I admit I have been conscious of the word "teach" or "have to", I am still very stubborn about not being told how to do things. I don't want to be a drone, and I don't want my daughter to be one either. I hope that makes sense.
August 12, 2007 8:37 PM
Sandra Dodd said...
Maturity involves thoughtful decisionmaking, and mindfulness. To to refuse something to prove one can say "no" is as bad as doing something just because someone said to do it. Neither one is making a decision. They're both being reactionary.
August 12, 2007 8:40 PM
Danielle said...
I agree with you. But, to be honest, it seems like a lot of the people really do say and not say things just because they are told to say and not say them. I have critically thought about this, really I have. I have read the websites that you link to, and a lot of it is just repeating the same canned answers. I have seen it as pretty much just like listening to a fundamentalist group. One person, or a few, decide what "we believe" and what actions/wordages are appropriate or inappropriate, and the rest adapt. Newcomers are immediately told about what they are doing that goes against the grain, and not really "accepted" until they change it. I see a lot of that.

However, *at the same time*, what is said on the websites and essays is *very* helpful for parents. I suppose I have always just been a "do what works for you" type of person. That's why I thought I would be a good unschooler.
August 12, 2007 9:04 PM

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