I think Carlo Ricci is one of my favourite mentors (I don’t think he knows he’s a mentor; perhaps I should address him as “muse”, instead). I agree with him on just about everything when it comes to education. The only thing I’m not so sure about is his attitude toward educating the educators: he’s going for a jump-in-the-water approach, while I’m of the start-with-one-toe-and-you-won’t-be-scared approach. When freaked-out, frustrated parents phone me for information on homeschooling, telling them to unschool is probably not the best way to calm them down; most parents can’t wrap their minds around breaking the traditional schooling methods at this point.
I always mention unschooling, though. I think most people do some research on the subject at one point or another. It’s a fascinating idea, and parents who are already breaking stride by thinking about homeschooling are generally open to radical ideas.
I really like the concept of unschooling. The Sudbury Valley approach also interests me. Of course, all means of education interest me (the Waldorf Method is quite alluring), but child-led learning strikes me as the best.
Interestingly enough, I didn’t unschool my children because there was always the chance they would go into the school system again, and I wanted them to be prepared. They are both in the public system, now, by choice.
Ironically, had I been left to my own devices as a child, I would likely have ended up teaching myself in much the same way the public school system does now.
Carlo has recently begun putting some of his lectures on youtube.