Does Unschooling Mean “Anything Goes”?

Editor’s Pick. Written by Jennifer McGrail.

One thing I hear fairly often is that people will “experiment” with radical unschooling, the kids will go wild (for lack of another term) and the parents will pronounce it a failure. But the problem isn’t unschooling. The problem is that if you take kids who are used to lots of control and lots of rules, and all of a sudden say, “Okay there are no limits now. Do what you want, when you want. I’m not going to tell you what to do”… of course they’re going to go crazy. Why wouldn’t they? Like horses who’d always been confined to a pasture, and are suddenly given access to acres and acres of rolling fields, of course they’re going to run. They’ll buck. They’ll kick. They’ll squeeze out every ounce of rebellion and adventure that they can, in fear of their new-found freedom being taken away. Unschooling doesn’t work that way.

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