Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Horrible Idea? Or a Good One...? Looking For My Wonderful Readers' Opinions!

There are five Ryerson graduate students making a documentary about unschooling, which is pretty exciting!  Today, I spent a little while talking on Skype to the reporter for the story, about growing up unschooled, and some other basic questions (they're still looking for both a grown unschooler and an unschooling family, in the Toronto area, who would be willing to be interviewed/filmed, so if you're interested, let me know and I'll put you in touch!)... 

Right after that, I started looking through my "to respond" folder, which stretches back several months, and feeling really guilty about all of the unschooling questions people have asked that I've yet to answer.
And then I started thinking how easy it is to answer questions on Skype.  How I both usually enjoy it more, and how it takes about five minutes on Skype to answer a question that would take me fifteen minutes if I were to answer it in email (thinking about phrasing and proofreading and all that.  When answering questions about unschooling via email, I feel like I'm just writing a private post!  No less effort goes into it.).

So I thought "hey, I can tell people that if they want to ask me questions, add me on Skype, arrange a time to chat through email, or just poke me if I'm online!".

But then, quick on the heels of that thought, came the thought that lots of people like asking me questions.  Grown unschoolers aren't always easy to find, and thus are in high demand when they are found!  What if that ends up taking up a lot of time?

At which point another idea came along...  What if I put up a donation button?  And said that I am happy to answer questions for anyone who feels a need to ask, and don't expect any compensation, but if you want to give me a little something for my time, if you have it to spare, that would be really great.

So the point of this post is simply to ask if you think this is a horrible idea, or if this might just be a good one?  I have this huge feeling that what I say is SO not worth anyone spending their money on, but if it's an entirely optional donation button and is just sitting there if people want to use it, then it's out of my hands and thus in theirs, right?

You can probably tell I'm very unsure of this idea that popped into my head a mere fifteen minutes ago.  So, your feedback is very much appreciated!


  1. I say go for it! All you "already grown unschoolers" have a lot to offer those of us just starting out on this path! Here in Italy it seems very little is known about homeschooling and as far as unschooling... I have pretty much been told it is totally illegal! I am all for anything that can help spread the word about unschooling and make it a legitimate legal option around the world!

  2. I think it's a great idea. I adore donation buttons. Never underestimate how people like to respond with thank yous for your work... including money, which is a form of gratitude-currency as legit as anything else!

  3. Good idea, in my opinion. People are free to give in return. No different than a writer who wrote something I'd like to read, I think.

    - Misko

  4. You make astute observations, and are an articulate person. It seems reasonable that someone might contribute to your financial well-being, given the opportunity; which will allow you time/resources to provide information or freedom to pursue goals that will enrich others directly or indirectly.

    An optional donation seems rather harmless.

  5. yes its good. Anyway its just a donation no required big amount or something. can you help me out how to write impressively? i think this is a good preparation for my law school next year. I guess your idea is helpful to me. check out my blog please its or email me hope to hear from you the soonest. take care.

  6. I don't know, it's totally up to you. On one hand, I think you deserve it because you're a grown unschooler but on the other hand I feel that you don't offer enough with your blog for one. Just my opinion though.

  7. I think displaying a "Donate" button on your blog is a good idea; maybe add a text underneath mentioning that no one is required to use it but that all donations will be appreciated.

    Another suggestion: create a Wishlist of books that you'd like to read (Amazon has such a feature, though I suspect GoodReads and LibraryThing also do) and have a link to it placed somewhere around the "Donate" button. Some people may want to send you a book (newly bought or from their own shelves) instead of money.