Yarn Along

Linking up with Ginny today for her Yarn Along to share what I've been knitting and reading! I spent the four or so hours on the way home from our vacation a couple of weeks ago making good progress on the body of a flax light pattern sweater for Tenny. I did swatch for this and matched the stated gauge but I'm feeling like stressed road trip knitting is maybe producing a rather trim sweater. Ha! Oops! We'll have to see (the yarn is Knit Picks Stroll Tonal in Poppy Fields). 

I just finished reading Dumbing Us Down: The Hidden Curriculum of Compulsory Schooling by John Taylor Gatto. This was a really great (and quick!) read. It really confirmed for me my decision to homeschool based on more than just worries about exposure to things I'm not comfortable with, but based on philosophical convictions about the method and environment that best predisposes children to love learning and to grow as whole beings. It's hard to pick only a few quotes but I'll go with these:

It is absurd and anti-life to be part of a system that compels you to sit in confinement with people of exactly the same age and social class. That system effectively cuts you off from the immense diversity of life and the synergy of variety; indeed, it cuts you off from your own past and future, sealing you in a continuous present much the same way television does. It is absurd and anti-life to move from cell to cell at the sound of a gong for every day of your natural youth in an institution that allows you no privacy and even follows you into the sanctuary of your home, demanding that you do its "homework." "How will they learn to read?" you ask, and the answer is "Remember the lessons of Massachusetts." When children are given whole lives instead of age-graded ones in cellblocks they learn to read, write, and do arithmetic with ease, if those things make sense in the kind of life that unfolds around them. 


Two institutions at present control our children's lives: television and schooling, in that order. Both of these reduce the real world of wisdom, fortitude, temperance and justice to a never-ending, nonstop abstraction. In centuries past, the time of childhood and adolescence would have been occupied in real work, real charity, real adventures, and the realistic search for mentors who might teach what you really wanted to learn. A great deal of time was spent in community pursuits, practicing affection, meeting and studying every level of the community, learning how to make a home, and dozens of other tasks necessary to becoming a whole man or woman.


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