Thursday, April 17, 2008

Video Games and Parenting, by an unschooled teen

Zachary Sanders interviewed me recently, and has written up something extraordinary. For parents to write these things isn't bad, but it all comes to life from the point of view of one whose game time was once measured and monitored.

First, the intro by Zach's mom:
This two-part essay was written by my unschooled teen son for his Composition I college class. Zach has been radically unschooled for the past five years and relaxed homeschooled prior to that. He's never been to school except to play clarinet in a band and beginning this last January he decided he wanted to enroll in a writing course at our local community college. Video games are his number one passion with writing a close second.

In his essay, Zach writes about how it felt to be a child who wanted to please no one more than his mother but also a child who's passion I did not value or respect. Parts of Zach's essay were difficult for me to read but I knew the truth of it already and I knew that he had an important message to communicate to the mothers and fathers of the world. The sting of reading about the damage my old ways inflicted on my child were soothed in the knowledge that I've seen the error of my ways and have worked hard to repair our relationship I now know the beauty, peace, and extraordinary amount of learning, embracing his interests has brought to both of our lives. (

Zach's article is here:

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

New in French and Spanish

Sylvie Martin wrote:
Hello Sandra,

here is the presentation of the book :
It's in librairies since yesterday !! I have mine !! I'm so excited !!!

In the presentation, I'm not responsible for the yellow square ! I'm NOT the best french specialist of the topic !! aarrgghh..

Sylvie (Eliott le Magicien (97), Tom le Héros (99), Lilou la Fée (02)

Sylvie, you might easily know more about unschooling than anyone else in Franch. Someone has to be first! From that page:
Sortie à 16 ans du système scolaire, Sylvie Martin-Rodriguez a
créé un site Internet ( où elle écrit et
traduit des articles sur le respect de la liberté des enfants dès leur
naissance, afin de lutter contre les idées reçues concernant les
chemins de l’enfance. and the photo to the right

Yesterday a Spanish translation of "How to Raise a Respected Child" was put online by Laura Mascaró, who says she might make a few changes after others read it who can translate better.

"Cómo criar a un niño con respeto" por Sandra Dodd...

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Los Angeles Times, April 3, 2008

Defending home-style ABCs

Religious and secular families unite over legal battle on credentials
By Seema Mehta, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer
April 3, 2008

Madison Browning, 8, spent a recent school day coloring, playing on swings at a park and whirling to Japanese string music at a cozy dance studio. Caedyn Curto, 13, studied biblical scripture at his family's kitchen table before tackling decimals, completing a biology test and revising a journalism essay.

The Browning and Curto families, both of whom live in the South Bay, have embraced very different styles of education. But they now find themselves on the same side of a battle to continue teaching their children at home in the face of an appellate court ruling that home schooling in California must be conducted by credentialed instructors. ...