Mentoring Self-Directed Learners
by Lori Pickert
"If your child deserves to learn at his own pace and have his own ideas, so do you. Whatever you champion for your child, make sure you also give to yourself: the right to follow your own path, work at your own pace, follow your own interests, make mistakes, and try again. Whatever you want for your children, you are far more likely to help them achieve it if you live it yourself."
My take-away thoughts from this book were two: the idea of real work for kids based on their interests and parental involvement. The great thing is that it is inherently motivating and rewarding, so the parent does not have to force it to take place. The parent does, however, have to provide scaffolding around the work, such as helping the child stay organized (what supplies do you need? brainstorming), documenting the process (what was done, what was tried, what worked or failed), and encouraging progress (what was your goal? what could you do next? how could you share this with someone else?)
I talk a lot about projects, which Raccoon already loves doing, and other learning ideas over on our homeschool blog, The Imaginary Country of Celosia.