As Jen Lumanlan puts it, “I don’t have much in the way of parenting instinct but I make up for it with outstanding research skills.” Her deep dive into parenting research led first to a Master’s in Psychology with a focus on Child Development, then to another Master’s in Education, and then ultimately to choosing unschooling as the path forward for her family. In this episode, we dive deep into how she came to that decision, and how she’s shifting things so that she can soon stay home with her daughter.
Questions for Jen
Can you share with us a bit about you and your family?
In this episode, we’re going to dive deep into the journey surrounding your decision that homeschooling, and ultimately unschooling, was going to be the path for your family. So, let’s start at the beginning. School is definitely the conventional path for children and learning. What sparked you to even consider that that path might not be for you guys?
Let’s dive into some of the questions you considered along the way. I imagine one of the first questions you asked yourself was, what’s wrong with schools in the first place? What did you discover about schools that you wanted to leave behind?
Another common question when contemplating homeschooling is, do I need a curriculum? Actually, I think that might start as, which curriculum would I use? How did that line of research and thinking play out for you?
When you’re trying to decide whether or not to forgo the school system, it seems pretty reasonable to ask, how do homeschooled or unschooling kids turn out? Because as parents we don’t want to do our children a disservice. What did you find when you explored that question?
Intellectually understanding the research is great, but seeing it in action with your own child takes your understanding—and trust in the process—to a whole new level, doesn’t it?
Now let’s move to your ultimate decision to not send your daughter to school as she approaches compulsory school age and instead embrace unschooling. Was there a final question or lightbulb moment that tipped the scales for you? Or was it more the accumulation of all your research and contemplation that convinced you to choose this path?
You host a podcast, Your Parenting Mojo. I’d love to hear the story behind how that developed.
Links to things mentioned in the show
Jen’s podcast, Your Parenting Mojo, full of rigorously researched information to help kids thrive
Jen’s course, Your Homeschooling Mojo, to help you decide whether homeschooling is right for you
Ben Hewitt’s essay in Outsider Magazine, We Don’t Need No Education
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