Friday link round-up

Published by Lori Pickert on February 22, 2013 at 11:08 AM

Before we get started with this week’s Facebook links, I also shared a few wintry thoughts this week at Rhythm of the Home:

We talk about what we want to accomplish over the cold months and they seem swept clean and bare — a clean surface for building something new. Winter is, for us, a time of anticipation and excitement. Outside, everything is dormant, waiting to burst forth in a few months. Our projects seem the same. We are planting seeds... — Midwestern Drifts @ Rhythm of the Home

“Midwestern Drifts” would be a great name for a jazz album. I love winter! Am I the only one?!

Now, onto what we shared and talked about on facebook this week — and remember, if you don’t want to miss any of these, you have to hover over the “Liked” button and make sure there’s a checkmark next to “Get Notifications.” Thanks for making it easy, Facebook.

I have a lot of conversations on Twitter and elsewhere about the future of work — what kinds of jobs will our kids have in a country that’s apparently swinging more and more toward a freelance/gig economy? I just assume my sons will be self-employed, if not for all of their careers, for part of them.

“[O]nline freelance work is growing at a record clip, outpacing progress in conventional job markets tremendously. Today there are some 14 million full-time online freelancers in America alone. By 2020, it’s estimated that one in three workers worldwide will be freelancing online.” — The Future of Freelance (and Why You Should Care)

Being in charge of your own learning is a great first step to being in charge of your own career. Are you doing any entrepreneurial education at your house? Do you think it’s a good idea?

And what about in our schools?

“American schools are failing because they are suppressing children by forcing them into a compliance-based model of education. All children are natural learners. We’re born with curiosity, creativity, wonder, and intrinsic motivation. Research shows that with more years of formal schooling, those very qualities are stunted tremendously.” — How Should We Rebuild the U.S. Education System? @ Forbes

“At an ideal school, adults understand that their mission is to help children grow not just cognitively, but also socially, emotionally, linguistically, ethically, and physically. We can’t address all those different development needs of children until we restore some balance to what we value.” — ibid.

I left a long comment on this article on my page — you can see it here

A quote from Paul Graham sums up my opinion:

The important thing is to get out there and do stuff. Instead of waiting to be taught, go out and learn. Your life doesn’t have to be shaped by admissions officers. It could be shaped by your own curiosity. It is for all ambitious adults. And you don’t have to wait to start. In fact, you don’t have to wait to be an adult. There’s no switch inside you that magically flips when you turn a certain age or graduate from some institution. You start being an adult when you decide to take responsibility for your life. You can do that at any age. — Paul Graham

I’m working on a post about this, specifically about how we inadvertently shortchange our kids when we depend too much on prepared, pre-digested curricula and activities.

I was inspired by this post about bullying:

“Someone threw a brick through the window of a six year-old Jewish boy who had displayed a picture of a lighted menorah there. But the attacker misjudged the community. People from all religions and walks of life acted to reject the attacks and the hate that motivated them. Among other events, the local paper published a full-page picture of a menorah. In days, there were 10,000 menorahs in the city’s windows. “Not in our town” was the message. As the police chief said, ‘Silence means acceptance.’” — It Takes a Village to Make a Bully, part 1 @ Beacon

It’s a powerful series about a mother whose daughter experienced terrible bullying in her school and in her community; this is only the first post. Check it out.

I followed up with a link to a post Seth Godin wrote about “the bullying power structure”:

When students are given permission to be their best selves, they take it, just as you and I would like to.” — Destabilizing the Bullying Power Structure @ Seth Godin

Another inspiring blog series by Amanda at Habit of Being sharing her process of making time for what matters:

“For those of you [who] are still turning their nose up at the thought of a routine, I say this: we all have routines whether we realize it or not. Maybe it’s the checking of email from the bed in the morning, the yoga stretches you find time for in the morning, maybe it’s the pick-me-up cup of coffee you have each afternoon, or the square of dark chocolate you savor after the house is quiet in the evening. The question is, are you making the most of yours?” — that thing called time, part deux @ Habit of Being

“Call it focus. Call it mindfulness, being in the moment, being present. It doesn’t matter what you call it so long as you practice it.” — that thing called time, part three @ Habit of Being

Be sure to read the whole series.

Amy shared some awesome project work being done by her four-year-old daughter this week:

This is such authentic work she is doing. She is working hard there, choosing to try to draw a coyote, noticing its colors and how many ears and legs it has, and where they are. She asked me where its nose was, and I showed her the snout and we talked about how the shape of the snout is one of the ways a coyote is distinguished from other dogs, and she worked at getting it right, at the same time understanding that she could make as many paintings as she wanted to try and get the coyote to look the way she wanted to.

This all makes me happy, not because my child is doing this but because I have created the space in which my child knows she can do this. She is not being kept distracted with “age-appropriate” busywork but instead allowed to choose her own work.” — {PBL} Scattering @ Kids in the Studio

And finally, some words to live by from Amy Poeher, talking about positivity:

It's very hard to have ideas. It's very hard to put yourself out there. It's very hard to be vulnerable. Those people who do that are the dreamers, the thinkers, the creators. They’re the magic people of the world. So try to strive to be one of those.Amy Poehler @ Upworthy

This goes along well with my own post this week on positivity:

You are the little fish and the people who have something to say about what you do and what you create are the ocean you swim in. It doesn’t matter. They are as natural as wind and tide. Human beings complain and nag and pick and offer up unwanted opinions the way they grow hair: naturally and pretty much continuously. There is nothing you can do to change that. Someone out there distinctly dislikes Meryl Streep right now. Someone else is writing an angry screed about Mother Teresa. You can rise above it or you can tune it out or you can tunnel through it like a mole, but you have to accept that it’s always going to be there. Then move on with your life, because you have more important things to do.” — Dealing with Haters

Let’s support one another, because it can be a cold world out there!

Be a part of the PBH community. Project-Based Homeschooling isn’t for only one kind of homeschooler — whether you’re a classicist or a radical unschooler or somewhere in-between, all kids deserve some time to direct and manage their own learning while pursuing their deepest interests. Read the posts on project-based homeschooling. Check out the book. Join the forum. Chat with me on twitter. Follow me on facebook. See my pinterest boards on learning, authentic art, play, and more. Come make friends, get some new ideas, and brainstorm about your challenges.

Surprisingly often, people will champion self-directed learning for children but not allow those children's parents the same freedom and respect. It's their way or the highway, and you had better start doing it the right way (their way) right away. Your kids should learn at their own pace, follow their interests, and you should trust that they'll eventually learn everything they need to know. You, on the other hand, should get with the program, right now, 100%, or else. You don't need to have your own opinions or ideas; ours will suffice. There's no time to experiment and see if these ideas work for you; take it on faith or you're part of the problem.

If your child deserves to learn at his own pace and have his own ideas, so do you. Whatever you champion for your child, make sure you also give to yourself: the right to follow your own path, work at your own pace, follow your own interests, make mistakes, and try again. Whatever you want for your children, you are far more likely to help them achieve it if you live it yourself.” — Project-Based Homeschooling: Mentoring Self-Directed Learners


Comment by janet on February 22, 2013 at 01:12 PM

thanks again for reposting these links here. love the series about time on habit of being. with three people working from home plus constant travel, i see that we need a routine more than ever.

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 22, 2013 at 02:52 PM


i think routine is crucial! flexible routine — it’s an armature you can build your life around. :)

and amanda is wonderful!

Comment by amanda {the hab... on February 22, 2013 at 02:21 PM

oh my, i think i love Amy Poehler now.

i didn't know you were on pinterest. i'm now stalking you over there. just try to keep me away!

thanks for the support for my humble little series on time!

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 22, 2013 at 02:59 PM


amy poehler is wonderful, wonderful and her whole “ask amy” series is great!

how are we not holding hands over on pinterest already? ;o)

i love your time series — we need to *show our process*. i think it’s vital. it’s good to say blah blah blah be mindful blah blah make time blah blah (that’s me ;o) but seeing how specific people do it helps so much (that’s you ;o). huge thank you to you for doing that!

Comment by amy21 on February 22, 2013 at 06:14 PM

Thanks for including me yet again! And I appreciate these round-ups every week because, as you know, I'm not on FB.... ;)

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 22, 2013 at 08:48 PM


thank you for your wonderful posts sharing your projects & your process, amy! :)

happy to support those who have left fb behind... ;o)

Comment by Stephanie @ Dis... on February 22, 2013 at 09:33 PM

Thanks for your encouragement Lori. I just wanted to stop by and let you know that we started this week and I am amazed at what we have been doing! It is really exciting! If you want to see what my girls ended up doing, I would love to have you stop

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 22, 2013 at 10:12 PM

thank you, stephanie — can’t wait to check it out! :)

Comment by olivia on February 22, 2013 at 11:47 PM

Here is some perspective for your American freelance / entrepreneurial efforts. Sadly, I feel our country (South Africa) having too Spanish tendencies.

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 23, 2013 at 10:54 AM

olivia, thank you for that link — really interesting article! 

Comment by Robin on February 23, 2013 at 03:54 PM

The question about entrepreneurship really stuck out for me. I am a family physician and our family has been there through the whole process of me opening my own practice. My husband answers the phone (a cell we use for our business phone) from home while caring for the kids. We've made it very clear that everyone is contributing to the success of the practice. We also discuss business concerns in front of them regularly (though not details about patients, of course, which I keep completely private from everyone). Through our own experiences being entrepreneurs, it is our hope that our children also find ways of doing their own careers in their own ways.

Comment by Lori Pickert on February 23, 2013 at 04:04 PM

i took my first son to work with me when he was an infant and they’ve been a big part of our working lives ever since. owning our own business has been a huge education for us and our sons have been able to be a part of that. it’s been invaluable, really.

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