Blog · The Open School

Why Self-Directed Learning?

by Tay Arrow, Open School TV staff
March 28, 2020

Why would kids want to have a say in what they’re learning? Why would they want to define their own learning style? Why would they want to have input into the rules of their school? Why would they want to be a part of a restorative justice system that upholds those rules? Why would kids […]

Character Education Matters Character skills are a better predictor of success than academics.

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
March 11, 2020

Character skills have become a hot topic among educators in recent years. The modern character education movement kicked off with Carol Dweck’s Mindset in 2006, followed by Paul Tough’s How Children Succeed in 2012 and Angela Duckworth’s Grit in 2016. All three topped the bestseller lists, and continue to inspire countless school programs aimed at […]

The Educational Value of Video Games

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
March 2, 2020

No, I don’t mean educational video games, like the ones your local public school lets their students play in math class, in which players have to solve multiplication problems to help some frog get across the road or something. I mean the kinds of video games your kids are always begging you to buy for […]

Exploring Zephyr Mountain Grove

by Tay Arrow, Open School TV staff
February 24, 2020

We walked up the northern road to an undeveloped portion of the land, where native grasses and manzanita are speckled with inviting granite boulders. I climbed a cluster of boulders with my 6 year old. The rocks were warm in the afternoon sun, and the hills smelled of white sage and orange flowers. The other […]

Children Are Born Creative

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
February 19, 2020

In 1968, NASA hired Dr. George Land and Beth Jarman to develop a test that could measure the creative potential of NASA’s scientists and engineers. They came up with a test for divergent thinking, which is the ability to look at a particular problem and propose multiple solutions. This test had no right answers, but […]

Worldschooling at the Carlsbad Tide Pools

by Tay Arrow, Open School TV Staff
February 14, 2020

The fish was still flopping in the sand, right at the top edge of the tide line. It was about the size of my forearm, silver and glittering in the Southern Californian afternoon sun. “We have to save it!” shouted one of the girls. There was a chorus of agreement, and we ran down to […]

Sardines in an Age-Mixed Environment

by Eric Barajas, Open School staff
February 9, 2020

Throughout the past few months, I have spent at least two days of the week at the Open School of Temecula Valley. Since I have now experienced the equivalency of a semester there, I have begun to reflect on my observations and would like to share one of them. For a large period of the […]

Does Self-Directed Mean Self-Centered?

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
January 27, 2020

At The Open School, students are allowed to do whatever they want with their time, go wherever they want on the campus, and interact with whomever they choose. With a few small exceptions, students aren’t required to do anything, go anywhere, or talk to anyone. They can do what’s fulfilling to themselves, and we expect […]

Why Require Attendance?

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
January 10, 2020

This article is a response to the article “Compulsory Self-Directed Learning?” by unschooler Wendy Priesnitz, in which she criticizes Sudbury model schools, among others, for having compulsory attendance. Says Priesnitz: “What do you call it when students are allowed to self-direct their learning but their attendance at school is compulsory? I call it cognitive dissonance.” […]

How the UN Convention Gets Children’s Rights Wrong The UNCRC is progressive on every issue except education

by Aaron Browder, Open School OC staff
November 19, 2019

In 1989, the United Nations drafted a document called the Convention on the Rights of the Child. Their goal was to persuade every nation in the world to establish laws that would protect the rights of their young citizens. So far, this document has been ratified by 196 countries, including every member of the United […]