This Is What Happens When A Kid Leaves Traditional Education

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Logan Laplante is a 13 year-old boy who was taken out of the education system to be home schooled instead. Not only was he home schooled, but Logan had the ability to tailor his education to his interests and also his style of learning, something traditional education does not offer. As Logan has mentioned, when he grows up he wants to be happy and healthy. At a TEDx talk in 2013, he discussed how hacking his education is helping him achieve that goal.

Logan’s story can be seen in a similar light as Jacob Barnett‘s story who was first put in Special Ed by his school until he was pulled out of standard education and is now seen as an incredibly intelligent young person who is on track to winning a Nobel Prize one day.

I also recently did a TEDx talk in 2014 about my story of leaving college for good. You can check that out here.

More on Education & Homeschooling

Education is often considered the foundation for creating a well rounded and productive society, but this belief usually stems from being sure that those coming out of the education system are able to keep the cogs of society turning in order to maintain profit margins of large companies in a system that requires constant growth. Instead of having creative and out-of-the-box-thinking people, the current style of education creates more submissive, obedient and trained graduates so the current system is always maintained.

What this means is that standard education is focused less on each individual and their growth and more on creating a supply of worker bees that can go out into the world and follow within the confines the system sets out. Sir Ken Robinson gave a famous TED talk in 2007 where he discussed his beliefs about how education kills creativity. This TED talk is one of the most viewed TED talks of all time and  has inspired many to re-think the way we are educating our children. Since traditional education is still taking its time with adjusting, many are turning to homeschooling as a solution as it allows children to explore education much like Logan did.

Currently about 3.8% of children ages 5 – 17 are home schooled in the US. In Canada, that number drops to about 1%. This is a number that is expected to continue growing in both countries as more see the limitations of our current education system. Also, studies done in the US and Canada show that home schooled children out perform their peers from both private and public schools.

In my view, home schooling is much more likely to create a creative, adaptive, and forward thinking person who is less conditioned to think only within the small confines of a crumbling system. Does this mean it is for everyone and that one can’t turn out that way through standard education? No, I simply feel the chances are far greater with homeschooling.

My decision to leave school behind when I was in college came from the same beliefs I hold today about education. I felt confined within the system and I felt it wasn’t going to lead me somewhere I wanted to be. It didn’t matter whether I was studying business, engineering, marketing or music, I did not enjoy the methods and couldn’t see a way to change things except by leaving. Aside from what society would make us think, leaving education and a diploma behind was one of the greatest decisions I have ever made as I was then able to explore and learn anything I wanted without having to worry about a rigid structure which promotes memorization and useless testing. I believe we will be OK if we leave the current education system behind and choose other methods. This isn’t to say homeschool is for everyone, but I truly believe that a drastic, and I mean drastic, change in the way our education system functions needs to happen, and soon.

Does Education Kill Creativity?


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More From 'Alternative News'

CE provides a space for free thinkers to explore and discuss new, alternative information and ideas. The goal? Question everything, think differently, spread love and live a joy filled life.

  1. My reasons for starting homeschooling 8 yrs ago were social. I felt responsible for the influences with which my children came in contact. Then, after two years of studying everything I could get my hands on, I discovered a whole new set of reasons why I chose to homeschool.

    In the beginning, it was not to keep my children separated from the world so that I, personally, could be the one to “indoctrinate” them, but to keep the schools and peers from being the ones telling them what to think or how to behave or how to treat people. I knew I could teach them to look at subjects of life from all perspectives; to gather facts and info from more than one source; to make judgements and decisions as soundly as their consciences would allow.

    After all these years, I now see the fallacy of institutionalized learning. It is in the classroom 8 hours a day, in a room full of same aged children, with one adult struggling to get facts into 30 different brains which is actually keeping our children separated from the world.

    Absolutely, there are children who thrive in educational institutions. However, I have observed and spoken with numerous adults who spent time in school doing what was required of them and then, outside of school, doing real learning; passionate learning that was driven by their hard-core curiosities.

    Ultimately, though, the first commenter in this thread makes the most poignant statement. What really matters is that WE HAVE A CHOICE as parents or students. If you want to keep your child in the traditional K-12 it is not my prerogative to force you out of that option. Even IF I think it’s the worst possibly thing for one specific child.

    The danger really lies in adults who feel like they need to support any type of faction who takes away parental rights of parents who READILY accept their parental responsibilities because of the few who don’t. Personal responsibility should be the driving force behind any parents’ decisions for their children as well as for students making their own decisions.

    I very much appreciated this article, and love the ways in which we can all share our ideals and hopefully create a more genuine and compassionate social “norm”.

    W/a Smile, Tiana

  2. I say if your kid is happy and doing well in traditional school and they like it let them be, If they are having mild concerns or problems get them help, and see if it works, if so great if not…then try homeschool or alt school, if your kid constantly gets into trouble for being unique, different, creative, and individual and HAtES school then take them out and either homeschool or internet self school. I WISH I would’ve had those options as a kid, I hated the ridiculous box they try to put everyone in and turn out so you fit in a cubicle when you get a job. BLAH, I thoroughly enjoyed bucking the system and strived to be a pain in the ass…as my way of getting back at them….perhaps if I would have better avenues for displaying and promoting creativity I would have liked and done better in school, needless to say I eventually dropped out, got stupid jobs, returned to college and went on to Grad school, but I still hate the typical school/job mentality that permeates our system and rewards only certain types of personalities….let people be who they are, nurture and educate with the purpose of allowing one to reach their full potential…not stifle creativity to create mindless drones…who just plug into cogs!

    • Tiana

      So, out of curiosity what do you now do for a living after everything you’ve been through to make sense of the world?
      W/a Smile, Tiana

  3. Rachel

    I took my daughter out of school at eleven , she just did not fit in and was continually bullied . She is intelligent and good looking and other girls just did not like that . It took me 2 years to finally make the decision to remove her from school and it has proved to be the best decision that I have ever made , she did her GCSEs at 13 and got all A’s and B’s and had 5 A levels ( 3 a* and 2c ) at 15 , she is still in college and now that her peer group are more mature she fits in with them much better. She is a very happy lovely girl , my daughter is mature beyond her years and far more able to cope with things than her friends and I am sure that this is in part , due to thinking outside the box,other kids seem to have been so controlled by either the school system or their peers that they cannot think for themselves. I actually think that school for some children can have a terrible effect on them , that could damage some children for life .when I took my daughter out of school , it was because I was scared about the damage it was causing her mentally , not only has she done unbelievably well academically , but she has grown into the most well rounded teenager that I have ever met and was described by her tutor the other day as a social butterfly . Home schooling will not work for everyone , but if your child is unhappy like mine was , don’t take two years to take the plunge like I did . Rachel

  4. Evelyn

    I homeschool my 6 and 5 year old (I also have 8mo old twin boys). What I have loved about homeschooling is that each child can advance at their own pace. My son is spelling at a 6th grade level (he is 6, but has a natural ability to “see the words in his head”, is how he puts it). My daughter just started 2nd grade math. She isn’t gifted in math, she just enjoys it and works at a slow and steady pace. She is dilligent and it serves her well in the school room. Both kids love geography and are memorizing the map of the US, complete with mountain ranges, canals, bays, rivers, states and capitols. They quiz each other and encourage one another’s efforts!
    They are happy kids, they are healthy because they get home cooked meals all day every day and get plenty of time in the sunshine. We also spend a lot of time with other homeschooling families at parks or having play dates.

    They are far beyond where they would be if they were in any kind of traditional school setting. And what’s more, they can advance in subject content without having to be pushed ahead into a classroom with older kids that may speak and act in a way beyond their maturity level. They can be who they are and not feel weird for being “smart” or “brainy”.
    We reward their hard work and train their character when it shows lack. Yes, we teach them about God and the Bible, anyone who believes in something passes those beliefs on to their children. Why Christians get flack for that blows my mind?!
    I wouldn’t trade this responsibility for the world! It’s amazing to watch my children learn and be such a part of their daily lives!

  5. Danielle Miller

    I was homeschooled until 6th grade and I loved it. I was always told that I was very mature for my age, and I had an incredibly accelerated reading level. However, my mom forced me to go to school. It helped me to develop my social maturity and gave me the ability to expand my interests to other things than the things that I liked to do at the time. I would have been fine if I had stayed homeschooled until college. However, I loved public school and now I am in college working towards a degree for teaching in at the secondary level. Different strokes for different folks.

    • I love it. That sounds like a great balance, and it gives the pre-adolescent period in the safer place. Actually, I have home-schooled nieces, but they didn’t grow up in the states. It got to the point of trying public school in Tampa, but the girls started doing the American “keeping up with the Jones’s” thing, and so they got out of there and for any public schooling, they did it outside the US. I’m glad to hear about your mom’s approach, though, because you got access to the whole social environment, and resources too.

  6. kim coy

    I am very seriously concerned that public school is ruining my child and turning him into a behavioural problem because he thinks outside the box and is an introvert who hates the busy dirty overcrowded classroom. I have to work for a living and can’t afford private school. Can homeschooling be done without a stay at home parent????

    • Brandi

      Hi Kim,
      Im a single mom of 4 boys and manage to “unschool” my kids. Kids learn so much from their surroundings alone but the more time they spend out of the traditional classroom, they build an interest in learning on their own. And they will. My 14 year old is now a well know indie game designer, my 11 year old is a military weapons specialist (i wish otherwise but thats what he enjoys). My 10 year old appears to be moving to the study of all living things. He loves bugs and his curiosity is always aroused at the sight of them. My 5 year old, well.. hes 5. But he appears to just be enjoying his childhood instead of compulsery schooling and im ok with that. Just work the field trips and such around your work schedule as I do and use your environment around you as a tool for learning.
      We go grocery shopping and its an amazing tool for math. The kids balance their own checkbook and budget. It has given them a much greater appreciation for the things they have and the money you make.
      You will freak out and cry. A lot! Wonder if youre making a mistake. And then they make another discovery. All you can do is sit back and smile with pride.
      Give it a shot. Your kids will love it and you will love being a part of it.

  7. Ray

    Ok then where is money for people living on our streets be great if camps Beds and 3 meals a day

  8. A lot of evangelicals home school their children. Their goal is not to promote creativity and progressive thought but to stifle creativity with a set of beliefs that aim to strengthen an army for their god. I agree that traditional, public education is limited. But one needs to consider the various ways home schooling is put to use.

  9. TonyM

    We are indoctrinated into the values, ideas and goals of our environment, and this happens at school, but also at home, and it leads to that we start living a wrong life, someone else’s life. Look up a book called Alkuajatus – The Original Thought, you’ll find a point of view just completely out of the ordinary, but foremost a functional help to solve this problem once and for all.

  10. This raised the question in my mind as to who would be the Einstein in our society, an then it occurred to me… It would be the Einstein kid. Right? To each his or her own, and not some cookie cutter approach.

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  12. M. Waite

    I have homeschooled my children, well this is my 8th year. I have been asked many questions and heard many comments, good and bad, over these eight years. The one thing I do know, is that those that don’t understand homeschooling have bad feelings about it. I get it. Homeschooling goes against the grain. And I’ve seen families who don’t really educate their children. But, 99% of the moms I homeschool with, take their child’s education serious. Most of them don’t have degrees and have never been trained to be teachers. The unique idea behind homeschooling is that you teach towards your child’s bent. You look at them as individuals and see what curriculum works for them and what they are interested in. For instance, my son is in 7th grade. He has told me since he was 5 that he wanted to be a scientist/inventor. That has never changed, it’s still his bent. I have him in a high school level General Science class. Not because he’s brilliant, but because I want him to have an advantage so when he gets to high school he can take higher level science classes. My daughter, on the other hand, has told me since she was 4 that she wants to be a famous baker. That hasn’t changed and she’s now 11. I won’t put her in that science class in junior high, unless she wants to take it. What most of you don’t know is that homeschoolers have many resources. There is so much curriculum out there that you can use to fit your family. Also, there are co-ops where your children can take classes outside the home. Many high school homeschoolers take classes at the local junior colleges. I encourage those of you who don’t understand homeschooling to learn more about it. Your views might change.

    • emmajean

      This is not a criticism of you but a general comment; The fact that your children have not changed their minds about their future careers since they were wee is one of the negatives of homeschooling in my opinion. When my son was 5 he wanted to be Bugs Bunny. Since then he’s wanted to be a fireman, a chef and a flight attendant; his views are varied because he’s part of a varied world instead of what is only in our home. As a teenager he has focused on the arts, he loves to perform so he’s actually closer to his original career choice than his other passing interests -but he still was able to have those interests even if nothing ever comes from them.

  13. This is what can happen but the title implies this is what will happen… not the same thing. Homeschooling benefits some and hinders others, be mindful.

    • Glen

      That is a very sad comment and it gives homeschoolers a bad name. We have home educated for the past 21 years – All of our 6 children! My wife is simply AMAZING! She makes sure they children do a MINIMUM of 185 days of school PLUS field-trips and extra activities. Although each of our children have different educational needs, abilities and interests, they all score FAR above their peers when taking standardized testing.
      For someone to SAY they home-school, and then be too busy to actually do it is wrong. I agree.

      • Cee Cee

        I don’t see it necessarily as a “very sad comment”. Outcomes always vary whatever the endeavor, and no last word has yet been written in education; there is no “one-fit-all” and as terrific as homeschooling can be, it does not work for everyone. Let’s keep in mind that the learner is just one part of the equation and not all wives are “AMAZING” when it comes to homeschooling. I’ve seen it first hand…. sadly….

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