Wednesday, October 11, 2006


SelfDesign: Nurturing Genius Through Natural Learning
by Brent Cameron

I just checked out this book from the library and it was extremely refreshing for to read. I think it was just published this year. There aren't even any reviews up at Amazon yet. The author runs a school in Vancouver, British Columbia. It was pretty much started because his daughter didn't want to go to "regular" school.

The author's theories are along the lines of unschooling, but he does think that collaboration is extremely important for a productive society and for an individual to be fully educated. I actually learned more about myself than I did about Tania through reading this book. It has inspired me to focus on what I want for myself and let Tania worry about what she wants for herself. So many times, I have thought, "I want X,Y,or Z for Tania." The author believes that what parents want for their children often gets in the way of their true destiny. If you just let the child be, she has natural curiosities and instincts that will lead her toward happiness and survival. This is different from neglect. The parent is there offering opportunity and building on the child's interests gently. But the choice is the child's about what she wants to learn, when she wants to learn it, and how she wants to learn it.

The author has a mantra of children's rights that he and some of the students formulated. The basis of these rights is that children have to right to live and learn in freedom. I have come to believe this truly is a right.

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