The practice of unschooling is a growing trend amongst parents today. Not only are families fed up with the inconsistencies of the public education system, but they also don’t have a real desire to homeschool their children in a system that has an official curriculum. This doesn’t mean that their children don’t receive any education at all. It means that the kids are typically given the freedom to be in charge of how they learn.
Statistics About Unschooling
1. The percentage of unschooling students who pursue some form of higher education after leaving home: 83%.
2. 44% of students who came from a home that focused upon unschooling have earned a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university.
3. The average age that students from an unschooling atmosphere begin to take advanced college courses: 16.
4. 78% of adults who came from an unschooling background were financially self-sufficient.
5. 1 out of every 2 unschooled children pursues a career that is within a creative industry, such as music, photography, movies, arts & crafts, or writing.
6. The percentage of students who focus on a creative career when they have never had any formal curriculum education: 79%.
7. 53% of unschooled students consider themselves to be entrepreneurs.
8. 63% of students who never went to a formal school also think of themselves as entrepreneurs.
9. 77% of unschooled students believe that there is a direct correlation between their childhood interests and the career path that they have chosen to take.
10. 7 out of 10 unschooled students say that the greatest benefit they received from the process was an increased level of self-motivation and confidence.
11. In a recent survey, 28 out of 75 respondents who were unschooled stated that they saw no disadvantages to their educational experience whatsoever.
12. The most common problem that unschooled students stated that they faced: criticism about their learning process and social isolation because of a lack of a homeschool community in their area.
13. The number of responds that stated the disadvantages of unschooling outweighed the advantages of the practice: 3.
14. Two thirds of students who were unschooled say that they plan on repeating the educational experience for their children if they have a family one day.
15. In the United States, the percentage of children who are homeschooled on any given year: 2.9%.
16. About 1.77 million children in total in the US receive at least one year of homeschooling annually.
17. 91% of households that keep their children out of public or private schools have concerns about the environment those learning institutions provide.
18. Girls [51%] are slightly more likely to be in a non-traditional learning environment when compared to boys [49%].
19. The high school grades of 9-12 have more unschooled students than any other student demographic.
20. 14% of students who come from any homeschool environment will go on to achieve a graduate degree or attend a professional school.
Beliefs and Behaviors of Unschoolers
Unschoolers take an unorthodox approach to education that might just be perfect for the creative children amongst us. This process encourages a lifestyle where learning and life are considering one and the same. Instead of formal lessons and specific assignments that must be fulfilled, unschooling creates an atmosphere where children can pursue their own interests and learn at their own pace. Instead of mandatory educational requirements, there is the chance to develop meaningful skills in areas where a child has a passion.
Surprisingly enough, unschooling is a legal practice in many places around the world. Some countries like Germany have taken a tough stance against unschooling and made it illegal, but that doesn’t change the fact that the practice occurs. In looking at the statistics of unschooling, you might just be surprised at how successful these kids happen to be and what they are doing with their lives as adults.
Many famous figures throughout history have proven that a formal education is not required to be a leader who can change the world. An informal education, as the information shows, might actually be better.
There might be a lot of judgment and criticism associated with unschooling, but education is also supposed to be individually tailored. As the statistics show, the students who succeed the most in an unschooled environment are the creative types that wouldn’t succeed in a sit-down, curriculum-based environment.
As the evidence shows, unschooled students receive a good education, but just in a different way. Students are able to attend colleges, earn formal degrees, and go on to have successful careers. Some say that they need to be financially frugal in order to be self-reliant, but that isn’t any different than any other career. Wages for the Middle Class in the United States have been static since 1980. Families are struggling in many different industries. It isn’t because of the schooling that they received.
The problem that many seem to have with unschooling is that it is so different than what other formal programs of education provide. If you haven’t come from an unschooled background, then it is difficult to understand that learning still occurs, even if it is unstructured learning. Instead of forcing children into lesson plans and required lessons, kids get the chance to learn at their own pace and pursue their own interests. This gives them higher levels of self-esteem, the chance to engage in social relationships without clique pressures, and a shot at a great career in the creative industries because they can pursue their passions full time.
Unschooling isn’t for everyone. It especially shouldn’t be advocated in areas where it is illegal to pursue this form of education. The benefits of unschooling, however, seem to outweigh any negative effects that might be experienced. With more time to learn the things a child is interested in learning, reading, writing, and arithmetic can still be core components. They just don’t require massive repetition through structured teaching to achieve results.
For the creative child, there might not be a better way to learn in the world today.