Unschooling Experts, Criticism, and Radical Chore Rosters

Last week, I wrote a blog post called Are You a Proper Unschooler? I scheduled it to publish while we were away on holiday in Canberra. By the time we arrived home, the post had been online for about 12 hours and it hadn’t had many page views at all.

I thought, “Oh well, not many people are interested in the topic of unschooling experts.” The next day I changed my mind. A steady stream of people arrived to read that post. And after a day or so, it shot into my ‘most popular posts ever’ list. Yes, it seems people are interested in such questions as: Is there such a person as an unschooling expert?

I’m hoping people are also interested in radical unschooling and, in particular, the question: Can you still adopt the label ‘radical unschooler’ if your family uses a chore roster? I bet practically everyone will answer this question with a resounding, “No!” They’ll say, “Don’t be silly, Sue! You don’t understand radical unschooling at all.” Despite anticipating this reaction, I decided to argue the case for a radical chore roster, in this week’s podcast. I guess I can cope with the negative opinions if I have to!

Does any of this sound interesting? Will you listen to my podcast? I hope so!

Program Notes

Blog posts about what unschooling is
Blog posts about unschooling experts

Blog posts about radical unschooling

Blog post about unschooling and chores


And have you seen my children’s novel, The Angels of Abbey Creek? It’s available from LuluAmazon and Barnes and Noble.

Thank you to anyone who takes the time to listen to my podcast!

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  1. Reply

    This is interesting, Sue. We don't have a chore roster but there are certain jobs that belong to certain people.

    One thought I had as I listened is that sometimes it isn't about who is willing the do the job but who is able to do it. Our boys naturally do the most physically demanding jobs and some of us help less than the others. The principle of 'do itself yourself if it worries you' wouldn't work too well for us because sometimes a person is unable to do something. I do find, though, that the children are compassionate of inability and prepared to pitch in to help but quite intolerant of what they see as laziness. That's when arguments happen over fairness.

    I enjoyed your podcast, Sue! I was crocheting a blanket as I listened, this time 🙂

    1. Reply


      Oh yes, certain jobs certainly suit particular people. And I do agree that there are times when someone is unable to help out with the housework. But maybe it's not only the routine cleaning type jobs that are important. Everyone can give of themselves regardless of their ability to physically help out around the house. We can take time to listen to each other, play a card game when we don't feel like it, read that extra chapter of a book when we'd prefer to do something for ourselves, take the time to hug and just sit quietly… Even little children have things they can do. I remember a time when Gemma-Rose's main job was to keep us all supplied with hugs and kisses!

      Fairness… I used to worry a lot about this. I actually entered marriage determined never to do more than my fair share of the work. I have since worked out that to be truly loving we have to give without thinking about what we are receiving. Life isn't a balance sheet. I discovered that the more I give, the more I receive. I never expected that. Maybe children don't realise it works this way. But with our example they will get there, don't you think? I've also been pondering the thought that when we stop controlling others, we give them the opportunity to give freely of themselves. Lots of random thoughts!

      Thank you so much for taking the time to listen. I am glad you had something to keep your fingers busy. I once crocheted a blanket. It was supposed to be rectangular but ended up a very strange shape. Oh well, at least it was still warm! I keep meaning to tell you that I really appreciate the shawl you made me. I wore it nearly every day over winter. It is beautiful!

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