My kids are old enough to have opinions on our socioeconomic status, and they don’t care that cello lessons and SAT tutors are accoutrements of the upper middle class. They see we live in a very small two-bedroom apartment. I tell them our apartment is nicer than some peoples’ houses. “We have Limoges china! We have crystal chandeliers!” Read more

The New York Times has a story about Germany’s outdoor preschools. The article cites research I’ve talked about here, like the book Last Child in the Woods. The article also features a Ph.D. dissertation from 2003 by Peter Häfner at Heidelberg University that shows that graduates of German forest kindergartens had a “clear advantage” over the graduates of regular kindergartens, performing better in cognitive and physical ability, as well as in creativity and social development. (I assume he has a book deal by now.) Read more

I am always looking for ways to convince myself to leave my kids alone. It’s a challenge to follow my kids’ lead instead of leading them in education. And I have to remind myself constantly that I do not know better than they do about what would be good for them to do with their lives. Read more

I’ve heard of the King of Prussia Mall throughout my life. It’s like Mall of America. It’s one of those malls that is so big it comes up in casual consumer conversations. But our first trip there was different than all other mall visits because the boys are old enough that I can let them to go look around by themselves. Read more

I’m always curious about how my kids use technology. Part of it is my endless curiosity for what is coming in the future. And part is my interest in how we define education. But there’s also schadenfreude: I am so sick of Millennials telling me how stupid I am about technology. I’m just really relishing those first moments when Millennials feel old. So I look for them all the time. Read more

This is a guest post from Sarah Faulkner. She is a homeschooling mom in Washington state. She has five kids, ages 14, 13, 10, 7, and 3.

If high school is supposed to prepare you for the real world, I am glad I don’t live by their definition of the real world. Because in the real world: Read more

I was excited when I read that kids in California were suing the schools for wasting their time. Or something like that. You can read about the lawsuit here. In my mind, the list of grievances against school governing bodies is long and growing. But the focus was on firing teachers — schools negotiated away the right to fire bad teachers and kids were suing the schools for doing that. The kids argued that they have the right to competent teachers.  Read more

We were in Aspen a few weeks ago and I stayed in the wrong part of town for where we needed to be every day, so we spent a lot of time on the bus and in cabs. I took a lot of pictures, including this one from the Aspen Art Museum (which was a great place for kids) but I don’t have any pictures of the kids with headphones on, even though they probably had their headphones on for most of the trip. Read more

I have been thinking about how I want to talk to my sons about sex ed. Specifically, about women. I want them to understand rape, but I want them to understand sex done right as well. Read more