Sandra Rakovac Talks With Unschooling Mother Stacey Jones by ProQuest

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[Stacey Davis Jones]: When we started homeschooling, I was nervous about not being organized enough, so we used a curriculum for the first three or four years. I'd been intrigued with the idea of unschooling, but it was still mostly just an interesting conversation. Then we adopted our son from Romania. Although he's the picture of the all-American boy now, when he first came home to us, he had a host of problems, not the least of which was that he was extremely sleep disordered. One morning after being awake with him most of the night, I awoke at 10:30. My daughters were still in bed in their pyjamas and my first thought was, "I'm going to go to prison! Someone is going to find out that we're not doing school and I'm going to go to jail!" Then I walked into the girls' room. My then ten-year-old was reading a gothic version of Sleeping Beauty and my five-year-old was reading the National Geographic's Field Guide to Cats. And I thought, you know, they're not doing so badly after all. That's the exact moment that we became life learners.A typical (is there really such a thing?) day for us starts with Eli (the eight-year-old) waking in time to have breakfast with his dad before he leaves for work. After breakfast, he'll either go out on the swing set and swing and sing at the top of his lungs or else stay inside and entertain himself with something.... He'll assemble his drum set or make up a craft or he'll don one costume or another to fight the good fight with some evil villain. I frequently hear him repeating to his imaginary audience, "Don't ever try this at home, kids." At that point I always make sure to check on him![Zoe] spends her days practicing her harp, reading or talking on the phone with friends - very low key - and Eli is a constant source of motion, happiest while running, jumping and singing his way through life. He has kung fu on Tuesday and Friday mornings and we go to the park during the afternoon when the weather is good. He sings in a children's c

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									Natural Life Interview
                                       Sandra Rakovac Talks With
                    Unschooling Mother Stacey Jones
Stacey Davis Jones — a mother of two daughters and a Romanian-born adopted son — resides with her family in
Louisiana right next door to her parents’ home. A Baton Rouge native with a vivacious personality and red hair to
match, Stacey Jones started raising a family only after a ten-year career as a cabaret singer in New York City, where
she met her future husband, in the person of her music director. She studied voice and drama at Louisiana State
University, Southeastern Louisiana University and The Actors’ Studio (New York). She currently sings and directs the
children’s choir at Jefferson United Methodist Church in Baton Rouge, but spends most of her time with her life
learning children and extended family, in her highly acclaimed roles of caregiver, cook and counselor.

Sandra: How and why did you decide to         part, completely unstructured. We go to       constant source of motion, happiest
begin life learning with your children?       the library, we watch television (not just    while running, jumping and singing his
Stacey: When we started homeschool-           public broadcasting, either). My eight-       way through life. He has kung fu on
ing, I was nervous about not being orga-      year-old son loves Smash Lab, Myth            Tuesday and Friday mornings and we go
nized enough, so we used a curriculum         Busters and now the Cash Cab (lots of         to the park during the afternoon when the
for the first three or four years. I’d been   science and information in those). My         weather is good. He sings in a children’s
intrigued with the idea of unschooling,       13-year-old daughter watches very little      choir at church on Wednesday nights.
but it was still mostly just an interesting   TV, but she does make time for Project        Zoe has Youth Orchestra on Monday
conversation. Then we adopted our son         Runway and, occasionally, Scrubs and          nights, our homeschooling teen group
from Romania. Although he’s the picture       Southpark (yuck!). We just live.              meets every other Tuesday, Wednesday
of the all-American boy now, when he              A typical (is there really such a         we’re at church and she has a girls’ group
first came home to us, he had a host of       thing?) day for us starts with Eli (the       she attends, Thursday night she has re-
problems, not the least of which was that     eight-year-old) waking in time to have        hearsals for a professional children’s
he was extremely sleep disordered. One        breakfast with his dad before he leaves       choir. Thursday nights Eli usually goes
morning after being awake with him            for work. After breakfast, he’ll either go    to choir with his dad so that he can play
most of the night, I awoke at 10:30. My       out on the swing set and swing and sing       with the other kids who are there with
daughters were still in bed in their pyja-    at the top of his lungs or else stay inside   their parents and I have an hour or so to
mas and my first thought was, “I’m going      and entertain himself with something....      myself between ferrying Zoe back and
to go to prison! Someone is going to find     He’ll assemble his drum set or make up a      forth to choir. Billie is learning how to
out that we’re not doing school and I’m       craft or he’ll don one costume or another     juggle college, fencing lessons three
going to go to jail!” Then I walked into      to fight the good fight with some evil vil-   times a week, a job and dating!
the girls’ room. My then ten-year-old         lain. I frequently hear him repeating to          Recently, we’ve found an owl’s nest
was reading a gothic version of S
								
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