Independent Learners

Multiple speakers and magazine articles had declared children were natural learners. (Natural Learners? Or Not? here.) Even better, teens were independent learners and required little parental input.

Early one morning, I sold a used geometry book online. The buyer asked if I had my lesson plans, and I offered my experience as well.

“My sons could not be given geometry and left alone to master it,” I typed. “They are not always independent learners.”

The admission was important to both me and my buyer. She confessed that her teens were not independent learners for most subjects.

Swapping stories felt like a conspiratorial moment against peers.

I added, “I would be upset if a traditional teacher handed my sons books to master and told them to return when ready to be tested. Why should we be expected to do that?”  

I am grateful to the home-educating pioneers for their courage, legacy, and advice. I am grateful they invested in my generation. However, those with both time and willingness to write articles and speak at conferences were the parents most likely to have strong independent learners. I wish I had realized this sooner.

Which declarations do not match your reality?

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