“I like to joke that at age six I started in the alternative education world, where I’ve been working ever since.” – Hannah Frankman

In this first episode of the new series Success Without School, co-hosts Deb Fillman of The Reason We Learn and Hannah Frankman of rebelEducator talk about being successful outside the traditional education system.

Hannah shares her story of growing up homeschooled, skipping college, and forging her own path outside of traditional school.

Hannah was homeschooled from 1st-12th grade, and in this episode, Deb and Hannah explore Hannah’s parents’ decision to keep her home, what her 1st-12th years actually consisted of, and how her education experience impacted her life post-high school.

The conversation covered:

  • How Hannah’s parents made the decision to homeschool
  • Different types of alternative school Hannah explored (like Montessori and Waldorf), and the things her family borrowed from those education styles
  • What socialization is like when you’re learning from home
  • The harm done by traditional school socialization
  • How much school differs from the real world
  • Hannah’s experience skipping college – why she decided not to go, and how that choice impacted her career
  • How much the school system pushes kids toward the college track
  • How school and college don’t have a monopoly on learning
  • How to structure your kid’s education around their unique interests and goals
  • Thinking about education from the standpoint of real-world application

Noteworthy quotes:

“The thing about school is that what’s okay is determined by somebody else, and it’s never you. It’s kind of like there’s some mystery force out there deciding what the right clothes and shoes and hairstyles and attitudes and vocabulary and even the right people to be friends with. If you step across that line you’re gonna get smacked down really fast. The vast majority of kids are just trying to fit in.” – Deb Fillman

“True, well-rounded socialization really has nothing to do with the things that you learn in school. Being a well-rounded human interacting in the real world does not equate to sitting in a classroom with thirty kids you have nothing in common with except your academic aptitude and your birthday. It’s a very strange contorted system for kids to be learning how to socialize in, and it’s also often very cutthroat and very cruel. Most homeschoolers that i know are actually far better socialized than most public school kids, because they got a much broader range of experiences and social interactions. You learn more, quite honestly, spending a day in
the life in the real world with a parent than you ever would in a classroom, where you’re going to the grocery store and you’re learning how to have an exchange at the cash register, and then you go to the bank and you watch how that process unfolds, and you’re learning more that’s a transferable skill than you ever would in school” – Hannah Frankman

“Kids in school start to identify with whatever grouping they get put into. You’ll get kids that are perhaps brilliant from an emotional intelligence standpoint, or some other soft skill, that would make them brilliant people managers or brilliant operators of a very large organization – but they’re not great at grammar and math on the timeline that school has arbitrarily stated, so they end up in the less advanced classes, and they just think they’re dumb. It’s so tragic, because there’s so much human potential that’s getting lost from kids accepting these identities really early – of being a certain thing that is entirely untrue.” – Hannah Frankman

You can find the recorded episode on YouTube.

Kovid Bhaduri

Kovid Bhaduri

Kovid Bhaduri is a self directed learner and the author of “A one stop guide to productivity”. He has previously worked in SEZ research and spends his free time playing music and learning economics.

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