Thursday, 20 September 2012

No regrets

...as my musical namesake once sang, but i think it was a cover.

Anyway, here's the latest vid:


A couple of things about this.  The children are currently taking a rather dim view of home education.  Since we sort of "did it for them", this might be thought to lead to some degree of distress on the part of Liz and myself, but no.  Not for me at least.  This may be because my rationalisation circuits are very advanced, or it may be because i have good reason for being fine about it.

The reason i think i'm fine about it is that there are several prominent examples of adults whose parents focussed on raising them full-time who later went on to say they wished they'd gone to school, but who are successful because they didn't.  One of them had a weekly column in a national newspaper at the age of sixteen and the other wrote a play which was put on in the West End, also while she was in her teens.  The second person is particularly remarkable because when she chose to go to school, quite late on in her adolescence, she was rather disappointed that the teachers weren't interested in what they talked and that the lessons came to an end abruptly with no opportunities to explore further.  My take on this is, well, what did she expect?  She chose to go to an institution where education is structured in that way.

So there's cognitive dissonance there as well.  In spite of the facts that school was not up to scratch in her own judgement, and that she was successful in an artistic and creative sense as well as in a worldly sense, that is, by a wide range of standards, as a result of being home educated, she still wished she'd been to school.   This strikes me as odd.  However, i think there's a healthy and honest explanation for this, which also applies to the children.  They are trying to feel good about their life choices and breaking away from their parents' lifestyle, and as such it's to be expected that they are positive about being at college.  They are also academically successful, engaged in college life and motivated to learn the explicit curriculum.  They were also given the choice at every point to go to school if they chose, and they never did so, unless you count the decision to go to college early.  As such, it makes perfect sense and I have no problem with it.

Here's the other video:


This is about comfrey, a herb banned for internal use in the UK.  I've basically said all i want to in the video, so i'll talk about making it.  This is in my father's front yard.  I felt somewhat self-conscious doing it due to people walking past, and i'd rather there'd been more comfrey cream in the tub when i filmed it.  You might also notice that the first video is slanted.

Just on the subject of YouTube videos, two things have just happened.  One is that i have a new camera, so if i can get the computer to work with it, the quality of the videos should improve from now on - Daniel's advice is that only HD videos get watched much, and since he's an avid YouTube viewer and a digital native, i trust him on that.  The other is that yesterday, someone only one degree of separation from a subscriber to the Other Channel commented on one of my videos.  This is slightly disconcerting, but might resolve the weird audience asymmetry problem between the two, where one is just slapdash and unpublicised but gets hundreds of thousands of views, and the other is meticulously planned and promoted and gets hardly any.