"I've read your whole website, and..."

January 2015, someone wrote:
I am a newbie, and I read the ENTIRE website before asking to join the Facebook group! I appreciate all the information and ideas you've thrown out there. Please hang in there, love!

Although the sentiment was intended to be sweet, it had that "read your whole site" thing.
Sylvia Woodman responded:
==-==I read the ENTIRE website before asking to join the Facebook group! ==-==

That is very impressive! I've been reading Sandra's website for years and I still don't think I've read everything there is! Also, I've noticed that things I've read in the past have new resonance for me as my kids get older. Or there are ideas out there that I've forgotten about. So I would encourage you to keep reading. Click on the links as they are brought to the discussion. Even if you have already read them. You never know what new idea might help you.

Same someone defended herself with:
I'm an extremely fast reader, haha. I read quickly the first time to get a general sense of the information available, and then I know where to find things when questions arise.

Lisa Haugen Celedon:
Slow down, all ye fast readers! Lots of fast reading got me into a lot of mess and chaos in my family when I first started considering and trying unschooling. Two and a half years later I'm still sorting some of that out, and there are lingering consequences.

But I have certainly learned the meaning and value of gradual change, and why 'Read a LITTLE, try a LITTLE, wait a little, watch" is so essential.

Sandra Dodd:
It is possible to read Joyce's whole website, and Pam Laricchia's, but mine passed that point a long time ago. NOTE: Pam Laricchia's has grown since I wrote that. Don't try to read them all—find what you need when you need it. —Sandra, 2017

2021 update: No one is likely to read all of my site OR Pam Laricchia's (nor listen to all the podcasts).

Even though Joyce Fetteroll's Joyfully Rejoycing is tightly organized and finite, what is burgeoning into thousands of topics is her work on Quora, where she answers parenting and unschooling (and other kinds of) questions from the general public. Her work there has an excellent response and reputation. You won't read it all; don't abandon your children to attempt it.

-=-I'm an extremely fast reader, haha.-=-

Please avoid haha, LOL and “ridiculous” here. They’re the opposite of positive and helpful.

Fast reading is a school thing. What I have on my site is not “information” in a “read the chapter and answer the questions” kind of way. There will never be a test on whether you understand unschooling. No one can test out or challenge up. The only unschooling happens with your child in your family, and he will be the only judge of whether it’s been done well.

If you want to hazard a guess about how many pages there are on my site about unschooling, I could give you a percentage of what you found, but that’s not positive or helpful, either. Most of the “pages” (URLs) would print out four to ten pages, on paper. Very few would fit on one page. This one is one of the longest; my printer interface said 24 pages. I did not hit “print.” Sandra Dodd.com/t/debate

That page is very cool because it has Ren Allen’s original opinion on television, which changed drastically, and she wrote about that change. It’s linked. Ren Allen was very active in discussions for years, and now she’s doing body painting and getting national recognition. In case you didn’t find the Ren Allen pages: SandraDodd.com/renallen

Ren did this make-up on my daughter Holly in late 2013. Ren grew up in a family that didn’t allow her to play with Barbies or to use make-up. She grew up to become a make-up artist and has been flown to other states to do weddings and events.

Clicking the photo will get you to other photos from that set. The photographs are by Keith Dixon.

click the upper-righthand "x" to exit

The reason I brought up Ren Allen is that one of the longest pages, that wonderful TV debate, is a Ren Link. Even if a person read nothing but what Ren wrote, and what involves Ren, and really read it and thought about it and incorporated some of those ideas, it would take a couple of weeks to *begin* to get it. And Ren's not currently involved anymore. There are many others whose works I collect, each of whom has shared a lifetime of learning, with stories of their children from early childhood through (some of them) adulthood, and how unschooling played out and is still affecting their families.

But people should really read what Deb Lewis has written, and if Joyce didn't have her own site (and Quora, now) she would still be very well represented by things I've saved. SandraDodd.com/deblewis

Joyce Fetteroll: SandraDodd.com/joycefetteroll

Some of the newer writers who are my favorites are here: Colleen Prieto, Karen James and Marta Pires. Their children are all still in single digits, those three above. If people are lucky, they will still be helping unschoolers in ten years.

Their children are teenagers, in June 2022; all families still happy.

People whose kids are grown are represented there, with writings over the past ten or twenty years. Pam Sorooshian, Ben Lovejoy, Kelly Lovejoy, Schuyler, Meredith

Someone asked this:
Jenny Cyphers is my favorite IRL unschooler who also happens to write pretty well! Do you have a page on Jenny?
My response:
Lots of URLS are plainly guessable.

Again, Again!

“No-one is ever likely to read my whole website and I don’t ever need them to. It’s not written to be read from one end to the other any more than a pharmacy is intended for someone to start at one end and eat, drink or inject every substance in the whole room. If you find a page that does help you, guess what? It will help even more if you read it again after a year or two. And if you read it after you’ve been unschooling for five years it will seem that the first time it was a black and white postcard and now it’s a technicolor movie. Because you’ll understand it better and you’ll see the subtlety and the artistry of what people wrote and maybe you’ll wish you’d been able to understand it better sooner.” ~ Sandra Dodd

Changes in Parents (episode of Pam Laricchia's interview podcast)
photo by Sandra Dodd

"Reading fast isn't often useful, or good, outside of school."

Ideas about reading thoughtfully
Places to discover parts of my site you hadn't seen before:
Unschooling Site News Just Add Light and Stir Randomizer (might not include newer pages, or might)

(another person claimed to read the whole website)