I really feel like I am starting to truly "get" unschooling. My latest realization came to me when I was doing my record keeping logs (required by the state) and I decided I was going to start counting an hour per week for vocabulary despite the fact that we never sit down and have a formal vocabulary "lesson".
Any time my kids don't know a word (whether it is heard in conversation, on tv, or in a book) they ask, we discuss it, and we move on. I thought about turning each question into a lesson about using the dictionary, using the word in context, asking them to use the word after I've explained, etc. But I (thankfully) realized that all this would really do was discourage them from asking questions. If they are interested enough to ask then they will probably remember without the extra song and dance.
I have noticed them using many of these new words in conversation after these discussions, a few we never hear again. I think vocabulary lessons in school have the same results, some things you remember and some you don't. However, I do think my kids are remembering and using a lot more of their new "vocabulary words" because, as I said before, they were interested enough to ask but also because they see a context within which knowing the word is useful in the world, not just on a list of words to memorize.
I love this wonderfully revealing path we have chosen! :-)