Home Education with EXTRA NEEDS kids.
For more “Ask an Unschooler” videos, click here!
(you can also find them in the menu under “Unschooling”)
Home Education with EXTRA NEEDS kids.
For more “Ask an Unschooler” videos, click here!
(you can also find them in the menu under “Unschooling”)
In Home Education circles Deschooling has two meanings – both important – yet very different in scope and process.
Deschooling is often referred to as the initial period of transitioning from school to home education: allowing kids (and parents) to decompress after leaving the “rat race.” Taking a break from everything academic and relieving any pressure that school put on the family. Many consider it a finite period and once a family is “done” then they can really get busy with their chosen style of home education and never look back.
But Deschooling is much, much more if you’d like to Unschool successfully.
In this context Deschooling is the process of letting go of our schoolish “programing” and the beliefs that our upbringing and culture have instilled in us.
The first Deschooling link below includes the popular formula: “1 month of Deschooling for every year the child [or parent] was in school,” but I’ve found that for many people it takes MUCH longer. And it can vary depending on the kind of experiences or trauma that a person had in school (or even later in life surrounding education.)
Parents are usually the ones who need to deschool the most. We are the ones who have lived in this “culture of school” the longest. Most of us spent our entire childhoods and young-adulthoods in school, so deschooling can take us WAY longer than the formula above.
Deschooling can be challenging for parents . . .
For our whole lives we have been steeped in a culture that values “academic” activities over other activities that children enjoy. We are overtly bombarded AND subtly influenced by beliefs and judgements that support the dominant culture full of “shoulds” and deadlines (i.e. age 6 for reading, age 18 for adulthood) that are totally antithetical to the natural unfolding of the process of Unschooling.
It’s very common for long time unschoolers to think we are “done” letting go of our school-ish beliefs and then ***BAM*** our kids hit a certain age/milestone or our mother-in-law makes a comment that shows us we’re not quite done after all. The resulting negative feelings we have show us that we still have some doubts, fears or anxiety about Unschooling and about allowing our kids to TRULY follow their interests without judgment, coercion or otherwise inserting ourselves in their process. Sometimes these doubts can be released by reading, conscious reflection and further “letting go.” Sometimes schooly beliefs are held deep in our subconscious and it takes more effort to change them.
Parents’ willingness or resistance to the process of Deschooling CAN have an effect on how easily our kids’ transition from School to Home Education, or from School-at-Home to Unschooling. It will DEFINITELY have an effect on the Unschooling lifestyle once the transition period is over (or even if there never was a transition period because they’ve been Unschooling since birth.)
Our doubts, fears and anxieties about the things our kids are doing or NOT doing are REALLY caused by our residual “schooly” beliefs. The more willing we are to explore that connection, the easier it is to work with those beliefs and continue the process of letting go.
My advice: Go easy on yourself. You are undoing decades of habit and societal programing. Just continue to read and reflect. Observe your children as objectively as possible and practice REALLY listening to them. They are showing us the way.
My favorite deschooling practice and one I recommend often to new and experienced Unschoolers alike, is this:
Anytime I notice doubts, fears or anxieties about my kids’ education or development I take that as a reminder to focus inward and work on another layer of deschooling myself. When those negative emotions above tempt me to “meddle” in their process of Unschooling, I instead take action to further MY process of Deschooling.
Here are some great descriptions of Deschooling from the Unschooling Mom 2 Mom group on Facebook. The first is from Linda Wyatt:
“Deschooling has less to do with what kids DO, than it does with how the family is THINKING and FEELING about learning. That’s what changes during deschooling. It isn’t some sort of temporary break from educational things, like a vacation, it’s a complete restructuring of perceptions of what learning IS, what it looks and feels like.
This processing takes time. Sometimes LOTS of time. Even those of us who have been unschooling for a very long time occasionally find little “blips” of school-based thinking we had been hanging onto without realizing it, and need to clear those out.”
And this from Brie Jontry:
‘[I] have been doing this long enough to also experience when something innocuous prompts me to step back and go, ‘wow! How did that fear/nervousness/clenchy feeling slip in there?’
A few years ago another long (long) time unschooling mom and I realized we stumbled over our kids being X age and not knowing how to ride a bike! Silly, right? Like there’s some window of learning for bike-riding. Or tying shoe laces!
Recently, my child and I have been talking about deschooling as a model for de-gendering – noticing how ideas of binaries: either/or as the only possibilities (educational/entertainment) crop up in the ways we view the world, experiences, and the choices people make.
Just like with ideas about gender, I think it’s a good idea to remain open to the possibility that your experiences – which for most of us include school – can (and probably will) crop up at various times in the background of our thinking and need some deeper exploration, in terms of bias, both conscious and unconscious.
Something many of us have talked about at various times is the idea that we never finish deschooling, [which] could be helpful to keep in the background.”
Here is an eloquent post from my friend and co-moderator on Unschooling Special Needs, Delia Tetelman:
“Deschooling is a very mild description. For me it’s been like deprogramming. There are so many norms that I feel are branded into me like with a hot iron. I’ve had to peel the layers back slowly.
My acupunturist said today that in Eastern Medicine and Native cultures, body parts are not named after some male scientist, like Fallopian Tube, or Broca’s Area. In Western medicine, it’s all about the ego and recognition and not about the spirit and the purpose of nature.
The patriarchal and academic status quo exists throughout our culture. Challenging authority, especially patriarchal authority is difficult, and realizing that authority is not “science” or “nature” is even harder. My conclusion: it’s my children who are teaching me. I’m the one who is unlearning.”
Delia also compared Deschooling to Cult Deprogramming (!) in this post:
“Deprogramming someone out of a real cult is a process where the deprogrammer chips away at the false assumptions that the person has about the cult and exposes the cult’s lies and contradictions. It’s a process whereby the person goes from a ‘sacred regard’ for the cult, to a realization of the coercion and manipulation being used to control members.
It’s useful to study the similarities of all cults which boils down to what is known as ideological totalism. After exiting a cult, a person has to rebuild his/her entire belief system and can often feel like they are “floating”. They feel lost, ungrounded, and still have emotional trauma.
Although public school is not a cult, there are parallels. There is a whole unsubstantiated belief system behind it and participants are prohibited from going against it. Deschooling is allowing new thoughts about the assumptions that you’ve had drilled into you, and chipping away at them until you are free from the ideological constraint that your children must go to school and they must follow a curriculum or else they won’t be educated, i.e. ‘saved,’ or ‘enlightened.’ Freedom of thought should be a civil right, but if it were, we could sue public schools for violating it.”
More perspectives on Deschooling:
From a question in the Unschooling Special Needs group on Facebook. Reposted here with permission from the original poster quoted.
The original question was (in part) about her child who Homeschooled for several years, but the struggle over school work was too much so she sent her child back to school. He thrived for 2 years in “positive private schools,” but once he had to change to a public charter school, much of the progress he had made was lost. They’ve begun Homeschooling again, but here’s what mom says about it:
“Homeschooling sucks. The only thing my son will do is listen to stories. He can read himself but will only do so at bedtime. It is video games and if I try to moderate and take him off he will literally do nothing all day. I have to be online a lot of the day and if he sees me online he wants to be able to use electronics too. I am so heartbroken . . . . He is a zombie at home. And he is “behind” on a lot of math skills for his age.”
There was also a post from someone else in that group the day before, asking for help in letting go of arbitrary limits on “screen time.” The problem for her was that even watching 1-3 shows seem to correlate with out of control tantrums.
Here’s my response to both of these posts:
Unschooling is trusting your child to show you the way they learn best – and then LISTENING TO and HONORING THAT.
If a child is drawn to screens it’s because they are getting something from it. When we can look past the “evil screen” and see that the screen is actually a window to a wider world of experiences, it is easier to see what kids might be getting out of it, and see what they are learning from the activity that just happens to be delivered through this vehicle we call a screen.
Now I know some people say the screen itself has negative neurological consequences for their child, and that might be true in the case of a very few kids with neurological differences or other special needs, but often times we parents blame the thing we don’t like for the behavior we don’t like.
If we’re already biased against “screens” (or television content or video games or another “unacademic” thing) then it’s much more likely that we will see connections between that awful thing and the awful behavior or symptom. When we can step back and more objectively look at the situation and behavior, it might become clear that there are many contributing factors, and screens might or might not be among them.
Another thing that often happens with a bias against screens (or anything else deemed “unacademic” like listening to a story instead of reading it) is that we will see activities involving screens as inferior to activities that are traditionally considered educational. We will then blame these “unacademic” activities for any behavior or result that we perceive as negative. (Doing nothing, being behind – again a judgement that seen through a different lens wouldn’t be negative.)
EVEN “special needs” kids can be trusted to show us how they learn best. Even my “barely verbal” 7 year old who has yet to potty train and can tantrum like a PRO can show me what he needs.
But I’ve had to learn to listen in a different way than I would listen to my other kids (or really to every other human being I’ve ever dealt with in my life) so it’s a steep learning curve for ME, but that’s just it – MY lesson to learn.
It’s MY work to let go of my biases – whether they are about screens, or math exercises or reading “on time” or the importance of college or when it seems my kids are “doing nothing” all day or the zillion other things Unschooling parents worry about when their kid is “behind” according to mainstream educational standards.
In actuality there is no such thing as “behind.” There’s just where you are – where your kid IS. A wise woman, Danelle LaPorte once said “Comparison kills.” When I read that I said “YES that’s IT! It’s the key to SO much of the trouble parents have with Unschooling. Ms. LaPorte was talking about the difficulty that arises when we compare ourselves to others but it applies to EVERYTHING and ESPECIALLY children. Comparison is damaging. Period.
Whether we’re comparing siblings against each other, or students in a 3rd grade class, or all 8 year olds in the world, or my yoga pose to the teacher’s pose, or my car or house to my neighbors’ . . . comparison to another person is NEVER helpful. Even when we compare and think we’re better, or our child is better, we create a FALSE sense of superiority.
If we simply work with what we have right in front of us, and take the LONG view (not assessing progress in days or weeks, but in YEARS) we can relax and live in the moment. We can SEE our children better. We can hear THEIR NEEDS more easily. If we want to truly honor our child and THEIR natural way of learning and growing and developing, we have to work hard to let go of our biases and baggage. We have to stop comparing them to any on else and REALLY SEE the child in front of us.
Unschooling is both easier AND more challenging than school-at-home Homeschooling.
It’s easier because the battle between you and your child is diffused. But the internal battle for parents is often intensified. The battle between our instinct and what society has taught us is “responsible parenting” or “appropriate education” is often a daily or even hourly challenge.
Unschooling is also harder sometimes because we can’t just follow a prescribed set of beliefs about education and we can’t just use a curriculum straight out of the box to make sure “all the bases are covered.” We have to follow and TRUST our children’s way. They WILL cover all of the “bases” that are important to THEM. We have to trust that other “bases” will be covered when the child sees a need. When the child’s life experience has caused them to ask the questions and develop genuine curiosity about that topic.
Unschooling is hard for many of us because we have to put faith in the process and detach from the outcome. We have to take a leap of faith that many around us will say is “crazy.”
But Unschooling is MUCH EASIER than Homeschooling once we do a certain amount of work on that internal battle and let go of our biases, programming and brainwashed beliefs that certain subjects or vehicles of learning are superior or inferior to others.
Once we are more comfortable with following our instincts AND our kids’ instincts Unschooling becomes just an exercise in managing the flow, finding the right resources for our kids and then letting them expand and grow in their own way and in their own time. No pressure to perform or measure up against anyone else. The only measure of success in Unschooling is the amount of JOY we and our kids are able to experience!
It was at my first Unschooling conference that I began to examine and question the discrepancies in the socially acceptable ways we treat children versus the ways we treat adults. After all, kids are not as “socially valuable” as adults right? They lack experience and wisdom. They can’t delay gratification or keep up with “important responsibilities” like bills and jobs. They require supervision and cajoling or coercion or downright force to “do the right thing.”
I grew up being treated with a certain lack of respect and condescension that I just accepted as normal from NEARLY EVERY ADULT I encountered. As I grew older I began to use the same tone, same attitude and show the same lack of respect for children that I encountered. It was ingrained in me. It was the norm to treat children this way (or worse). And despite my bent for social activism and all of the philosophizing I had done around equal rights for women or different races, ethnicities or sexual orientations, I had never stopped to think that the largest group of people that are routinely discriminated against, subjugated and marginalized is children!
I sat in the introduction to Unschooling workshop at that first conference and heard examples of ways that we speak to and treat children that would be considered rude, disrespectful or even verbal assault if we spoke to adults that way. A lightbulb went off and it has been an ever unfolding process of discovery, self examination and deprogramming to change my ways little by little to treat children AUTOMATICALLY with the same respect and consideration that I would give an adult.
It’s not always easy and sometimes I fall back into the old patterns of demanding, coercing and expecting developmentally inappropriate things from children . . . and then treating them disrespectfully when they don’t perform to my satisfaction.
Despite the fact that children have far less experience, self-control and ability to cope with the world, we expect them to have the same amounts of patience, impulse control and initiative as adults. BUT we are not willing to give them the same respect and consideration that we would give other adults. We speak to them as if they’re stupid and belittle them. We order them around and expect immediate compliance. We make plans without their input. We make decisions about their lives and how they will spend their time without considering their needs, desires or opinions.
It’s inconvenient for adults to stop and ask a child about their preferences or how they might choose to do things in a certain situation. We think we know better because we are older.
And this doesn’t even BEGIN to touch the issue that it is perfectly LEGAL to hit, strike or smack one’s own child when the same behavior toward an adult would be considered assault and would justify charges being filed.
This is a problem that has deep roots and even wider repercussions.
This Fall a group of pioneering Unschoolers in Dallas have come together to create a Home Education Co-op that has confirmed my suspicions that we give kids WAY TOO LITTLE respect, consideration and trust. The initiative, creativity, team work and problem-solving skills the kids in our group have displayed in creating and self-designing their activities and classes has been humbling, inspiring and surprising. (Even for a dyed-in-the-wool Unschooler!)
Within my own family, I have seen positive results when we take the time to sit down and share our individual goals, find common goals and develop a plan (with input from EVERYONE) to accomplish them. When we allow all members of our family OR our Unschooling Community Co-op (regardless of age) to contribute, share ideas and formulate a plan of action, the momentum is unstoppable, the engagement of the members is joyous and the level of satisfaction is monumental!
We have two Retreat Workshops that should prove informative, provocative and challenge you to make some changes or AT LEAST begin to recognize the most socially acceptable form of inequality that exists in all of our lives!
When we begin to become more aware of the ways that we buy into Adultism and begin to change our interactions with the children in our lives, we expereince more peace and harmony within our families and larger communities. This is truly a beginning step to creating a more peaceful world!
As parents we all hope to form good relationships with our children. Along the way, many of us fall back into certain behaviors and ideas that we were raised with: that adults should make ALL the decisions for a younger person without much input from the child.
Lets talk about it!
Creating Peace and Harmony through the Family Meeting
with Doreen Fisher
In an effort to find more harmony, reduce stress, and accomplish more of her family’s individual and collective goals, Doreen Fisher decided to implement a Family Meeting to create a little bit of structure in her family’s highly creative, free and unstructured lifestyle.
The result? They became more grounded as individuals and as a family, found more peace in their home, and began to show up for each other in a way that resulted in measurable movement toward their individual and collective goals.
Join Unschoolers Doreen and Mila Fisher as they share their process for the Family Meeting and discuss the benefits of allowing all family members – of ALL ages – to participate in running family matters and discover their own interests and accountability in the process.
Sue is a veteran Home Educator with 3 grown kids. All of her children were Unschooled, and Sue is a wealth of information on many aspects of alternative education.
From transitioning away from the curriculum mindset and into a learning partnership with your kids, to Unschooling through the teen years and supporting young adults as they transition into college or work, Sue’s perspective is invaluable.
If you are struggling with an aspect of Home Eduction or Partnership Parenting, Sue’s wisdom and experience can help reassure and guide you through the moments of doubt.
If you are simply curious about what Unschooling family life is like, she can share a comprehensive look based on her own experience and what she’s learned from her extensive network of Home Ed families.
Here are some of the sessions Sue will be leading at the Retreat. We will hit the ground running on Friday morning with workshop sessions and circle discussions, so getting there Thursday to set up your bunks, tents and campers will ensure you don’t miss any of the action!
Life Learning, Whole Life Learning, Self-Directed Learning, Organic Learning, Natural Learning, Interest-Led Learning. There are so many different names for this type of alternative education and almost as many definitions.
Come discover the core principles behind this method of education.
Gain clarity on what Unschooling IS and is NOT.
Is there a “right” or “wrong” way to Unschool? Is it still Unschooling if we require a few math or phonics worksheets here and there? What is “Strewing?” What is “Deschooling?” What is “Radical Unschooling?” What are the benefits and drawbacks to Unschooling? How can we be sure our kids will turn out OK educationally and otherwise? What if I give my children freedom and all they do is play video games all day? What if my child HAS to or WANTS to return to school in the future? How do I comply with Homeschooling laws as an Unschooler? Can I do it as a single parent, or when both parents must be earners?
We’ll tackle these questions and help newbies, spouses, grandparents and in-laws understand this complex and rich form of education and help you discover tools to move forward with Unschooling in confidence.
To read more from Sue on this topic click here.
After being radically unschooled her whole life, Sue’s youngest daughter decided she wanted to go to the local public high school. While Sue supported her daughter’s choice, they “did high school” on their own terms. After a year and half, Sue’s daughter had enough and returned to the freedom of unschooling.
We will explore the ways that Unschoolers use mainstream schools, alternative schools and “schooly” classes and lessons to achieve their goals. Can this still be considered “Unschooling?” How can we support our children when they choose methods of education and institutions that we as parents are ideologically opposed to – or just feel are not the best “place” for our kids? How can we allow our children to be exposed to the negative aspects of school that we have tried to shield them from all their lives? Can a school truly be a place of Unschooling freedom?
Donna is the mother of six and has been educating her children at home for almost 20 years. She empowers families to find and follow their Life Purpose through her writing, speaking, workshops and private coaching. Donna helps families who are moving from school to home education, as well as those who are moving from a school-at-home approach to one that is led by the Highest Values and Life Purpose of each family member. Join Donna at the Radiant Living & Learning Retreat for her 2 part workshop:
Unveiling Life Purpose for You and Your Children
Unschooling is an experience to be shared as a family, but it can be greatly enhanced when parents have the vision to facilitate children to their individual greatness. One of the most stressful areas in unschooling is the inability to understand how your child is communicating their life purpose so you can accurately provide for their needs and not distract them from their purposeful path. Many parents struggle with knowing their own life purpose and how to manage it productively. This can make it impossible to facilitate the life purposes of the rest of the family.
The key ingredient is knowing how to identify your highest values and priorities, and those of your children. Once you know these highest values, you can begin applying them directly to your everyday life. Raising your children, providing an inspiring learning environment, doing your own work to provide for the family and relate to others is enriched when you identify with your highest values. This process can make the difference between living a meaningful life or one of quiet desperation. Let’s face it, freedom is never free. It comes with great responsibility and if we’re not tuned in or we’re unsure, we become enslaved by our indecisiveness.
In this workshop Donna will take you through the process of determining your highest values, discovering the key to family dynamics and how your perceptions shape your life. We will also learn how to determine your children’s highest values and how to customize their learning experience into every day purposeful living and learning.
You will walk away from this workshop not only listening better, but also going through the process to have a clearer breakdown of what’s most important in your and your children’s lives.
You will be empowered with new self-understanding and inspiration to love more, live more and learn more.
This workshop is designed for parents but Part One is also appropriate for teens that are interested in using Donna’s process to discover their Highest Values and Priorities.
Values Determination Process for Parents and Teens,
Values Determination Process for Children’s Values,
Family Dynamics and Customized Learning
(Pre-req: Must have attended Session One)
To learn more about Donna and her process visit www.AnInspiredEducation.com
Connect with Donna at: www.facebook.com/DonnaVailInternational
Early Bird discounts are available through August 15.
By 2007 life events had led me to a point where I could no longer ignore the fact that I was put on this earth to
1. learn how to confidently hear and follow my “Inner Voice of Wisdom” and
2. help others do the same.
Often I just call it “The Voice” but it goes by many names: Intuition, Instinct, Gut Feelings, Higher Self, Inner Knowing, Emotional Guidance and more. No matter what we call it or what we believe it to be, we’ve all “heard” it at one time or another – or THOUGHT we heard it and wondered.
Sometimes we listen and sometimes we don’t.
At pivotal moments in my life, this Voice has “come through” very loud and clear as it echoed in my head. Other times it has taken a more subtle form: gentle nudges, strong feelings, hunches, feeling “guided” to take a certain action and other hard to describe phenomena . But however my Inner Wisdom ultimately communicates with me, it always rings true in my heart and I have learned after 41 years of “experimentation” that it’s in my best interest to listen.
We are born tuned into The Voice, but the voices of our family, teachers and other “authorities” often steer us away from listening. Sometimes this is done subtly and sometimes with strong coercion, threats or punishment. By the time we are grown, most of us have learned to successfully ignore or drown out our Inner Voice of Wisdom with the external voices that hold power in our lives, our communities and in our culture in general.
What does all this have to do with Alternative Education or Partnership Parenting?
For me, choosing to approach education and parenting in this way is:
Almost every external voice I’ve ever heard has said things like:
- “Children are too young and inexperienced to know what they want. They CAN’T know what’s good for them.”
- “Learning is difficult and can only happen when children are FORCED to sit and attend to ‘unpreferred’ activities.”
- “There are certain things EVERY child MUST know and they must learn it in the time frame and order in which ‘educational professionals’ prescribe.”
- “We must DEMAND respect from children (without reciprocating that respect). We should not be our children’s ‘friends’ and if we don’t discipline, punish and force our children to do certain things, they will never learn respect, responsibility or be motivated to do anything productive with their time.”
My Inner Voice of Wisdom has NEVER agreed with these ideas on education and parenting that seem to be dominant in western culture at large. The moment I made the decision to Unschool and try parenting without using punishment, the most profound sense of Peace came over me. I’ve learned over the years that this sense of Peace is a strong indication that my actions are coming into alignment with my Inner Wisdom that has never steered me wrong.
Of course doubts and questions have arisen as our family has made our way toward Unschooling and Partnership Parenting, but these have just been opportunities for me to practice quieting those external voices and tune into myself and my children to find the answer that is right for our family. And when things are still unclear I seek out experienced people on this path whose voices resonate with my my own Inner Wisdom.
Trusting children is a primary component to Unschooling and Partnership Parenting. In my experience, learning to hear, trust and follow my OWN Inner Wisdom is ESSENTIAL to learning to trust my children. How can we ever trust THEIR Inner Wisdom if we are unwilling or unable to trust our own?
So for me, Unschooling and working toward parenting in a non-coercive way can only be accomplished if I am CONTINUALLY tuning into my Inner Voice and recalibrating my actions to line up with that Voice.
Why RADIANT Living & Learning?
I’ve found that people who live from the inside out – meaning their motivations, choices and actions come from an authority within – these people GLOW. Their lights shine more brightly in the world. They RADIATE beauty and confidence and love and acceptance. We are drawn to these people because we want to be like them – maybe not precisely imitating the details of their lives – but we want to live our lives with the confidence and authenticity they do. There is a light in each of us that is trying to shine just as brightly.
We cannot live & learn “radiantly” when we are following someone else’s agenda. That just dims our LIGHTS or blocks them out entirely. When we are following our Inner Wisdom, pursuing our passions and fulfilling our life purpose, we SHINE.
If something you read on this website resonates with YOUR Inner Voice of Wisdom or makes you pause to reconsider the way you’ve always done things, the Radiant Living Community is sure to provide more inspiration and encouragement to confidently create the life you desire for yourself and your family.
Radiant Living and Learning Retreat
October 23 – 27, 2014
(1 hour south of Fort Worth and 1.5 hours southwest of Dallas)
Every little bit of freedom that a child is allowed in determining how they spend their days living and learning is a step in the right direction.
Nobody gets it “right” 100% of the time, but the more we can move toward honoring our children’s choices and unconditional acceptance of and respect for our kids AND ourselves, the closer we will get to Unschooling Bliss!
Radiant Living and Learning is a community of families who are supporting one another in moving toward a more peaceful, harmonious family life – toward living and learning together in joy as we celebrate each family member’s unique gifts, needs and passions.
Join us at the 2nd Annual Radiant Living and Learning Retreat this October!
Last year, 41 families had a BLAST playing and supporting each other.
This year we plan to double that number!
We will gather at Cleburne State Park for:
Here’s some feedback from last year’s Retreat:
“As we drove away from the retreat, my kids agreed unanimously that was the best Unschooling Conference OR Campout they’d ever been to! We can’t wait until the next one!” – Ami
“I’m so overwhelmed at the love, and how wonderful everyone was! I’m new in DFW and everyone was so inviting and welcoming. It meant a lot to me. Thank you all for being so great!” – Amanda
“Thank you for a very cool conference. I was pleased to see people from out of state, too.” – Rob
The retreat will be similar in pricing and content to last year with some additions and upgrades.
Details on pricing and registration here.
Early Bird Registration ends June 15.
Last Call for Discounts ends Aug 15.
Large family discounts and day passes are available.
We also have plans in the works for an Unschooling Conference in February 2015 at Great Wolf Lodge and Water Park in Irving, TX!
Click “Follow Us” or “Join Us on Facebook” in the right hand column of the homepage for events updates and periodic blog posts on Unschooling.
Join the Education Evolution!
with Krystal Trammell
One of the things that many people seem to worry about, when they first come to unschooling (or even if they’ve been working toward a freedom-based lifestyle for some time), is the fear that they’re turning the tables – relinquishing control to the kids.
Parents trying to give their kids freedom and autonomy can sometimes feel disrespected and marginalized, frustrated or worse: martyred to their children in an unschooling lifestyle. “It’s just part of being a parent,” they’ll say… Or, “We don’t want to take away his freedom,” they’ll say.
However, in my 11+ years of living and learning about the unschooling life, I’ve come to believe that there are natural limits to freedom and autonomy, and that these need to be acknowledged and respected in order for everyone in the family to benefit from unschooling, not just the children.
A functional + fulfilling unschooling life is ideally going to enrich and validate the needs and desires of EVERYONE in the family – not just the children. Let’s come together and chat about the natural limits of freedom, and how every member of the family can enjoy mutual respect and cooperation together.
What is Peaceful Parenting? How can I move from an Authoritarian parenting style to a more peaceful (and less stressful) way of living with my kids?
This will be a very experiential, hands on joy-shop lead by Daphne “Osunlade” Edwards-Emi using Byron Katie’s The Work (thework.com) to align with our inner peace – which is where all true peace resides.
We can ACT as peaceful parents, but that doesn’t make us truly peaceful. We can act non-controlling or non-authoritarian, but that doesn’t make these things so. These strategies/philosophies are a start, but what happens to the triggers that we are suppressing while “performing” as “good” parents? What happened to the stories, the trauma, and the deep seated emotions?
Come and find out how questioning our old beliefs and inquiring into our stressful thoughts can actually bring us true freedom. Come and see how this freedom gives us clarity. And then see how this clarity gives us the ability to act from a true place of peace. No philosophies necessary. See you there, my loves, with an open mind and heart!