This quote has been circulating through the unschooling community for years. Lately, it recurred on Facebook and several people shared some great links. Some question whether Albert Einstein actually said the quote. But that doesn’t really matter. The quote itself has been a huge inspiration to me – possibly one of the reasons why we ended up unschooling our children. A fabulous wikiquote devoted to Albert Einstein gives so many of his quotes as well as the contexts and people he was actually talking to. It’s really fascinating.
You’ve probably seen the original 1939 story Animal School, by George Reavis. This video, below, modernizes it by taking the story and applying it to beautiful photos of the animals. The creator of the video goes on to include his explanation of which children he sees most correlates with the various animals. I like his explanations.
“Your child is a Unique Blend of talents, personality and ingredients…nowhere else to be found.”
I’m happy to say that my kids were removed from the school system early on. Somehow, I was always aware that people were being dealt with like this, as I was growing up. So when I noticed this same one-size-fits-all approach happening with my own child in school, I knew that I had to find a better approach. And we did. We focused on their strengths – something schools are simply not equipped to do. But as a family, you can! My kids have grown up under a completely different paradigm.
It seems to me that the antidote for “Animal School” is Unschooling.