Sunday, December 31, 2006

Black chant

This is my attempt to translate a poem by José Regio. I hope you enjoy!

"Come this way" - some tell me with sweet eyes
Extending their arms, certain
that it would be good if only I'd listen
When they tell me: "Come this way!"
I look at them with weary eyes,
(filled with scorn and tiredness)
Cross my arms,
And simply don't go there...

My glory is this:
To create outrage!
And never follow anyone.
- Because I live with the same lack of will
With which I ripped my mother's womb

No, I won't follow your path!
I'll only go where my own steps
will lead me...

If what I seek to know
none of you can answer
Why do you repeat: "Come this way!"?

I'd rather slip in muddy alleys,
Follow the winds,
Wear rags, drag my bleeding feet,
than follow your path...

If I came to this world, it was
to explore virgin forests,
And draw my own feet in unexplored sand!
Anything else is worth nothing.

How? Could you ever give me the drive, tools and courage
I need to knock down my own obstacles?...
It runs, in your veins, your grandparents' old blood,
And you love what is easy!
I love what is distant and mirages,
I love abysses, torrents, deserts...

Go! You have your roads,
Your gardens, your flowerbeds,
You have your homeland, your roofs,
And you have your rules, thesis, philosophers, and wisemen...
I have my Insanity!
I raise it, like a beam, burning in the dark night,
And I feel saliva, blood, and poems in my lips...

God and the Devil are my guides, nobody else.
You've all had fathers, you've all had mothers;
But I, who never start or finish,
I was born of the love that there is between God and Devil.

Oh, don't come to me with your pious intentions!
Don't come asking for definitions!
Don't come tell me: "Come this way!"
My life is a storm that got loose,
A wave that rose.
It's an extra atom that became animated...
I don't know which path to follow,
I don't know where I'm going
- I Know I'm not following your path!

NVC Links

Nonviolent Communication Part 1 Marshall Rosenberg
Nonviolent Communication Part 2 Marshall Rosenberg
Nonviolent Communication Part 3 Marshall Rosenberg
Nonviolent Communication and Corporations pt 1

Yummy!

John Holt

"Education...now seems to me perhaps the most authoritarian and dangerous of all the social inventions of mankind. It is the deepest foundation of the modern slave state, in which most people feel themselves to be nothing but producers, consumers, spectators, and 'fans,' driven more and more, in all parts of their lives, by greed, envy, and fear. My concern is not to improve 'education' but to do away with it, to end the ugly and anti-human business of people-shaping and to allow and help people to shape themselves."

Tom Wheeler

"When we go to school we are taught that school will teach us what we need to survive in society by giving us the necessary skills to get a job and “take care” of ourselves, but the system is not interested in our well-being. It is only interested in what we could do for them. The process of public education is a combination of rudimentary knowledge which we need to be able to serve the rich and powerful plus “norming” behavioural indoctrination intended to keep us from questioning the status quo when we become servants to the capitalists or the government by persuading us that the system which exploits us somehow exists solely for our benefit (a blatant contradiction and a lie)." from Why Not to Trust Your School, an article by Tom Wheeler.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Games


















DJ has been busy with his forum and some new games he got at Xmas. He has recently discovered Deicide, another free multiplayer online game, and is getting into it.
Today's Links
Frida Kahlo
Frida Kahlo: Portrait of a Woman

Frida's Quotes
They are so damn 'intellectual' and rotten that I can't stand them anymore....I [would] rather sit on the floor in the market of Toluca and sell tortillas, than have anything to do with those 'artistic' bitches of Paris. [on Andre Breton and the European surrealists](...) I never knew I was a surrealist till Andre Breton came to Mexico and told me I was.

Friday, December 29, 2006

Music & RE Links

Metareligion
A War on Science
History of Religion The geography of faith and its wars across history: see 5,000 years of religion in 90 sec.

Leek spin
Bebo & Cigala - Veinte Años
A Cello Rondo video of Ethan Winer

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Nothing much...

News: ID card call to 'stop bullying' "Green MSP Patrick Harvie said the suggestion was troubling. "We should be preparing young people for the reality of defending their privacy and civil liberties against ever-more intrusive government systems."
Online: Education and Inspections Bill - Briefing on School Expansion from Human Scale Education (thanks Fiona!)

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Boxing Day



Today's Inspiration
Edison was a great believer in failure as a natural part of the path to success. When attempting to develop a better battery, Edison performed around 50,000 tests without success. Edison never became discouraged: "At least we know 50,000 things that won't work!" The battery he developed is still used today. He also did more than 2,000 experiments to find the right filament for the light bulb!

Monday, December 25, 2006

Happy Xmas!



"Let us celebrate Christmas.
Let us celebrate
New Year.
Let us celebrate
every day,
every hour
And every minute
of our life.
Let us rekindle love, friendship,
gratitude,
joy and enthusiasm
in us today.
Let us live today a purposeful and
harmonious day,
And tomorrow will be another day of
celebration.
Let us live each day as a
New Celebration."
Ringu Tulku, Gangtok

Link from Fiona (thanks!)
Is home-schooling right for your child?

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Xmas Frenzy





Have a great evening everyone!
Thanks to the EO list for these links:
Home-educated girl wins award
Famous Home educators
This sounds interesting too:
A Simple Approach to Organizing a Learning Co-Op by Laddie Lushin, Esq

Friday, December 22, 2006

Chess


E-Petitions We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to Grant home educators the right to sit exams in local schools as independent students.

Link Education Revolution

News Degree classification: Have the Desmond and Vorderman had their day?

Today's Quote
"I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; I will not refuse to do the something I can do." by Helen Keller

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Family

Exciting day today... collecting my parents from Bristol airport this afternoon, just hope I find my way there!

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Blogthings

You Are 12% Capitalist, 88% Socialist

You see a lot of injustice in the world, and you'd like to see it fixed. As far as you're concerned, all the wrong people have the power. You're strongly in favor of the redistribution of wealth - and more protection for the average person.

"To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest."
Gandhi

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Blogthings

You Are Midnight

You are more than a little eccentric, and you're apt to keep very unusual habits.
Whether you're a nightowl, living in a commune, or taking a vow of silence - you like to experiment with your lifestyle.
Expressing your individuality is important to you, and you often lie awake in bed thinking about the world and your place in it.
You enjoy staying home, but that doesn't mean you're a hermit. You also appreciate quality time with family and close friends.

How can


so many of us happily buy into this 'Xmas' consumerist scam when right now so many others are without a home? If you're not aware of what's going on you can always watch evicted or check no home.
I accidently came across Say no to Christmas and thought it was right up my street... Anyway, DJ & F are playing and I just overheard them talking about "What Would Buddha Do?" and having a good laugh - kids are great!

Xmas stuff 4 kids
Xmas Quiz
"Merry Christmas" in different languages
Christmas carols - sheet music

Monday, December 18, 2006

Books

I wanna read:
Baker, Joy (1964) Children in chancery
Thanks Gill!

Krishnamurti, Jiddu (1975) Beginnings of learning

Llewellyn, Grace (1997) The teenage liberation Handbook:
How to quit school and get a real life and education

Science & ICT

Yesterday DJ got us to watch Most of Our Universe is Missing
You can watch it online. I've finally got on with the EO Questionnaire and we managed to finish watching the History of Hacking (parts 2-6)- with Steve Wozniak, Kevin Mitnick and others.

More Fun Stuff
Catherine Tate - Lauren's French Oral
Catherine Tate - What are you wearing?
Catherine Tate - Lauren - Farmer?
Catherine Tate - Lauren - Are you gay, sir?
14 Days of Homeschooling To the tune of "Twelve Days of Christmas."

News: Patients win right to keep records off NHS computer
Check This: Ross Anderson
Free E-book: A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Privacy

On the The Big Opt Out website, which is 'running a campaign to protect your privacy and campaign to preserve medical confidentiality', I found the following:

"This is a copy of the letter that you will need to send to your GP if you want him or her to put a "stop" on your records being uploaded to the NHS "spine" automatically.

Exercising right to opt out

Dear Doctor,

As you are probably aware, the Government is intending to ask you to transfer the electronic medical records of your patients onto a national database called the “spine”. They intend you to do this without first seeking the consent of your patients. It is BMA policy that patients should give their individual consent prior to their information being transferred on to the national database.

There are substantial concerns about the privacy and confidentiality of information transferred onto the national database, not least because promised software security safeguards called “sealed envelopes” will not be in place and because the patient’s instructions with regard to who may access the records can be overridden. I do not believe that such a large database, with so many staff users, can be regarded as secure.

I would be grateful if you would ensure that none of my records held by you are entered onto the national system. Would you please also file or scan a copy of this letter in my records and also record my dissent by entering the “Read code” - ‘93C3. - Refused consent for upload to national shared electronic record.’ into my computer record. I am aware of the implications of this request and will notify you should I change my mind.

This request is itself confidential. Please do not divulge my decision, in an identifiable manner, to anyone other than to clinicians who are providing care to me and who might otherwise place information about me on the national care records service.

Further information for GPs is available online at www.TheBigOptOut.org/for_GPs

Yours sincerely,..."

Watch This: Suspect Nation

Today's Links
NO2ID
foundation for information policy research
UK Debt Statistics

Friday, December 15, 2006

Remember this?

Pink Floyd - Another Brick in the Wall

Art - DJ had some fun with linerider.

History: I just went to his room and he said: "It's the year 1086. I'm attacking a castle of the Byzantine Empire. I am the Turks, I'm on the way to the Holy Land and I'm going to attack and capture it. Then I'm going to get a massive army to defend it, in case the Pope calls a cruzade on Jerusalem." DJ also reminded me that the empire's capital was Constantinople, which used to be called Byzantium. Now it's Istanbul, in Turkey.

Tech/ICT - watched part 1 & 2 of The History of Hacking

On the news: The children's list that will do more harm than good

Take Action: Urge UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan to Appoint a Special Envoy for Darfur here

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Forums

Well, DJ spent the day finding out how to start his very own online forum. He was so excited when he got it together! I felt so happy to see him enjoying the cheer pleasure and excitement of learning! He actually noticed that he was on a high - on that natural high that comes about from achieving what you yourself set out to achieve. He set himself his own target, knew what he wanted to do, got on with it and became aware of just how rewarding this whole process can be. Isn't that just great? So if you read this, we'd love it if you joined this new forum!

Other than that, this morning I visited a local secondary school and spent an hour chatting with the school's SENCO. It was a good meeting - I felt listened to and understood - and I appreciated the openness and honesty - including the recognition that schools are, first and foremost, institutions and that they are NOT the right place for some children - neurotypicals or otherwise... I also enjoyed hearing break times being described as 'yes, it's a real jungle out there!' So, we're keeping our options open but will definitely not rush into anything... especially after today's breakthrough. The most important thing for me was to enable DJ to rediscover the pleasure and love of learning - maybe because I'm so passionate about it - and that's what happened today. Unfortunately schools can take that away...

Take Action
The Big Opt Out Protect your privacy and campaign to preserve medical confidentiality
E-petitions We the undersigned petition the Prime Minister to ensure that the DFES provide guidelines for the use of biometric technologies in schools.

Today's Links
Millions may resist database, says poll
Children’s Databases – Safety and Privacy, A Report for the Information Commissioner by the Foundation for Information Policy Research
On the news:
Home Office expert who helped set up a national database admits child porn charge

Listen

When I ask you to listen to me,
And you start giving me advice,
You have not done what I asked.

When I ask that you listen to me,
And you begin to tell me why I shouldn't feel that way.
You are trampling on my feelings.

When I ask you to listen to me,
And you feel you have to do something to solve my problem,
You have failed me, strange as it may seem.

Listen: All that I ask is that you listen,
Not talk or do anything, just hear me.
When you do something for me
That I need to do for myself,
You contribute to my fear and feelings of inadequacy.

But, when you accept as a simple fact
That I do feel what I feel, no matter how irrational,
Then I can quit trying to convince you
And go about the business
Of understanding what's behind my feelings.

So, please listen and just hear me
And, if you want to talk,
Wait a minute for your turn and I'll listen to you.

Anonymous

Learning

"Good judgment comes from experience,
And experience, well, that comes
from making bad judgments."
Anonymous

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Online Stuff

DJ listened to Steven Levitt, an economics professor, talking about economic principles at work in the real world of an inner-city gang. 22mns

We enjoyed Captain Capitalism Flash Animation Series
Nightmare Red Christmas
Piggy Bank Pinko
Heroes
Bleep

We also watched Pirates & Emperors and What Makes Us Tick Part 1 & Part 2, a 1950s cartoon on the workings of the stock market; the basics on what a stock market is and why we should choose to have one. Promotes the stock market as the engine of America's prosperity.

You can find more capitalist propaganda animations here.

Climate Change
DJ also watched parts 1 & 2 of An Inconvenient Truth, a documentary on Al Gore's campaign to make the issue of global warming a recognized problem worldwide.

Today's Links
Abbie's Blog - Autonomously educating a 10 y.o. on the autistic spectrum

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Reading
















DJ read these while at Monkton Wyld Court.

Geography
Yakko's World - The Nations of the World

Citizenship
Rules of Capitalism

Today's Links
Get Body Smart

Monday, December 11, 2006

Leaving early

















DJ was desperate to return to the familiarity of his cocoon; although I encouraged him to stay I decided to keep my word as I had said I'd be prepared to leave early if he felt the need to go back home. I'm gonna miss this place, people I met, eating together, making music, chanting, chatting, etc. The plan is to be back in March for the Home Educators Development Week!

More Holt
"To live well with other human beings, adults or children, is a subtle art. Rules for doing it are not much help. But if I had to make a general rule for living and working with children it ought be this: be very wary of saying or doing anything to a child that you would not do to another adult, whose good opinion and affection you valued. 'Mind your own business' is not a bad minor rule in human affairs."

"(Children need)
To be free of the constant pressure of adults, rules, regulations; to be left alone, to not be harassed all the time about hair, clothes, homework, exams, college; things to do; a society to grow in and into, a society that makes sense, has reasonable purposes, that they can trust and respect."

Saturday, December 09, 2006

More Holt

DJ joined us for supper today and played scrabble with J and E. We also got to use the internet for a while in the office - isn't that just great?!

I've been flicking through The Underachieving School by John Holt. The 1st chapter starts with: "True learning - learning that is permanent and useful, that leads to intelligent action and further learning - can arise only out of the experience, interests, and concerns of the learner."

Friday, December 08, 2006

Still here















Monkton Wyld Court will be hosting a Home Educators Development Week in March and I'm thinking about booking while I'm here.

After 2 days of playing and socialising DJ is having a 'hermit' day, which gives me another opportunity to be aware of my thoughts and feelings around his need for solitude. I've found some John Holt's books in the library, and started to read Freedom and Beyond - lots of food for thought, like:

"Schools do not have the power of life and death over children. But they do have the power to cause them mental and physical pain, to threaten, frighten, and humiliate them, and to destroy their future lives."

"Every time we try to manage the lives of young people, we give up the chance to see how they might have managed their own lives, and to learn what we might have learned from their doing it."

Today's Links
Essential Education
Loving Kindness Peaceful Youth

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Monkton Wyld



We're here and having a great time. It took me 2hrs to persuade DJ to come along - what did it in the end was to grab the PC and put it in the back of the car! He has now made a new friend and is enjoying himself. I'm loving the experience of community living. And guess what? I milked a cow yesterday, for the 1st time ever! What a wonderful experience! And met lots of interesting people, including 2 home-educating families.

Today's Sites
Buy Nothing Christmas
An Inconvenient Truth

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Off We Go!

We're almost on our way! See you all in a week!

"We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures." Thornton Wilder

Today's Site Edutopia

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Plans

Well, the plan is to spend a week at Monkton Wyld Court - I'm hoping DJ will be OK about it tomorrow morning because I'm really looking forward to go, so... fingers crossed!

Today's Inspiration
"Our best learning is ignited and fueled by a need to know - a natural urge or movement from within to know something pertinent, something particular that helps bring us more fully into being and into the world. This includes both knowledge of self and knowledge of the world, which from this view are interconnected and interdependent." Aaron Stern

“At the heart of every age is a unique impulse out of which, through the course of events and under favorable conditions, emerges a new cultural body. It is as if each age had its own DNA, which lives first in the consciousness of a few individuals who, like artists, create out of their irrational imaginations the planetary mystical perceptions that begin as heresy and end up as heritage.” Milenko Mitanovic

Today's Site
Academy for the Love of Learning

Watch Online
Peace Pilgrim: An American Sage Who Walked Her Talk
Independent media in a time of war
Hacking Democracy
Chomsky

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Be The Change

Unfortunately DJ kicked up a fuss and refused to go. I had a great day, met lovely people and was left with all sorts of new ideas buzzing in my brain e.g.
One Earth
Pachamama Alliance
Thomas Berry
Mary Evelyn Tucker
Brian Swimme
Matthew Fox
Drew Dellinger
Awakening Universe
Desmond Tutu
Your Planet Needs You
Foundation Global Community
Earth Charter
Wombat
Global Mindshift
Great Turning
Paul Hawken
Van Jones
Bioneers
One World
One World Radio
Dream Change

Engage With the Dream
Consumers or global citizens?
From dominion to stewardship
Hospicing the old, midwiving the new
You are the people you are waiting for!
There's nothing as powerful as an idea whose time has come
What did you do when you knew?
What would you do if you knew you couldn't fail?

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Be The Change

Hyperlink button has disappeared! Anyway, we're planning to go to Bristol tomorrow, to the Be The Change Symposium. I'm really looking forward to it.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Fascism & Oil

We watched America Freedom to Fascism, Aaron Russo's documentary.
“Fascism should more appropriately be called Corporatism because it is a merger of state and corporate power”
Benito Mussolini(Italian dictator, 1883-1945)

Hear an interview with Jan Lundberg on peak oil and cultural change (audio) After musical introduction, oil analyst and activist Jan Lundberg introduces the Peak Oil issue and the need for a deep level cultural shift to respond.

Watch Online

Dan Akroyd, Soul Man and Autistic, member of hidden horde
Talking Heads' David Byrne, Autistic, member of hidden horde
Did you know Gary Numan is Autistic?
Beautiful Minds: A Voyage Into the Brain
Autism Harmony and Humour
Vernon Smith, Nobel Prize Winner & Autistic, "Accept Us"
2002 Nobel Prize winner in economics and Aspie, in an interview with CNBC.
The Woman Who Thinks Like a Cow
"The amazing story of Dr. Temple Grandin" - BBC
Animal School