Dan Cadzow is an archaeologist who chose to leave his PhD program and become a stay-at-home unschooling dad of four kids. We have a great conversation that covers his path to unschooling, how he’s developed trust in the process, what the most challenging aspect has been so far, his advice for dads who are just starting out on this journey, and more. I really enjoyed the archaeological perspective that Dan brought to our conversation, it’s really interesting stuff!
Quote of the Week
“Our schooling system’s only about 150 years old. There are examples of schools and workshops and apprenticeships back into antiquity, but for the most part, kids learned organically just by being in society. I think of it in terms of the transmission of culture. And 150 years ago, somebody decided, this is really important, we need to control it. And you can hypothesize over their motivations, whether they were good or bad, but I think that it’s really hurting us as a society that we are trying to control it and limiting people’s experiences so much. But it seems like every generation seems to get a little worse and a little worse, and now you drive around the country and those iconic farmhouses are crumbling in ruins and there’s trailers next to them and six kids lined up getting into the school bus and it just kind of breaks my heart to see what we’re losing with this over-reaching attempt to control the transmission of culture. It’s like the kids are separated from the world and taught about it through abstractions.” ~ Dan Cadzow
Questions for Dan
Can you share with us a bit about you and your family, and how you came to unschooling?
I’d love to hear what your kids are enjoying at the moment. What are they interested in?
What were the key pieces in your decision to leave your PhD program and stay home with your children?
How did you build trust in the process of unschooling? What were the pieces that resonated with you and helped you feel more confident in choosing this lifestyle?
What has been the most challenging aspect of moving to unschooling for you?
As an unschooling dad, what piece of advice would you like to share with dads who are considering or just starting out on this journey?
Links to Things Mentioned in the Show
John Taylor Gatto’s article, Against School
Amy Child’s podcast, The Unschooling Life
Peter Gray’s Psychology Today blog, Freedom to Learn
The movie, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
You can connect with Dan through teamcadzow at gmail dot com