Thursday, January 26, 2012

Day 17 - Dystopia Fiction

Middle and I are studying Aldous Huxley's Brave New World.  It's one of my favorite books, and I'm glad to finally be sharing it with him.  He asks thoughtful questions and writes insightful short-essay answers to the questions I give him, and we've had several good discussions about its themes so far.

Reading the book has triggered an interest in other fictional dystopias.  The Giver and Feed are next on his reading list, and we're watching Minority Report together tonight.  I'm debating whether to have him read 1984 or just let him see the movie.  Maybe we'll start with Animal Farm, as we are headed into early 20th century history and can tie it in there as well.  As for Brave New World, it's kind of gratifying to see him making connections between the book and what he's just learned in psychology about Pavlovian conditioning, Skinner and Watson's behaviorism, etc. 

This is the part of homeschooling I enjoy the most.  Picking something cool, tying it in to a completely different subject, recognizing overlaps between science and literature and history and film; using these insights to spark a discussion about religion and morality, free will and what it means to be human.

This is the good stuff.

I hope we still do this kind of thing once he's in Real School.  Because for me, this is what learning is really about. 

I hope he's enjoying it as much as I am.

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