Fran Liberatore, unschooling mom of two and the creator behind the Instagram account Big Mothering, joins me this week to talk about her unschooling journey so far. Fran, currently working on her master’s degree in early years education, shares some of her reflections about educational philosophy and practice and how she hopes to see schools change for future children.
We talk about adultism and other societal messages we absorb about children, which then affect the way we treat children. Fran also shares her experience doing the deep inner work of unschooling and some of the ways she has grown and learned from her children.
Fran has thought deeply about parenting and education and her philosophical reflections are inspiring!
Questions for Fran
Can you share with us a bit about you and your family? What is everybody interested in right now?
How did you discover unschooling and what did your family’s move to unschooling look like?
When we began unschooling, one of the first things I really began to unpack was just how thoroughly we judge and control children, treating them as adults-in-training. Many years later, I’m still peeling back layers around this. You’ve written about this as the adult gaze. What does that mean to you?
With unschooling we’ve definitely chosen to question the education system and soon after that, the adult-child power dynamic. It doesn’t take long before many of us find ourselves questioning the multitude of systems that weave through our lives, does it?
When we connected, you mentioned you’re doing a masters in early years education. I’d love to hear the story behind that!
What is your favourite thing about the flow of your unschooling days right now?
Things mentioned in the episode
Big Mothering on Instagram
The Living Joyfully Network community
The Network is a wonderful online community for parents to engage in candid conversations about living and learning through the lens of unschooling. Our shared goals are to embrace lifelong learning, develop strong and connected relationships with our children, and cultivate a thriving unschooling lifestyle in our families.
This month, our theme is The Joys of Unschooling and we’re exploring it through the lenses of presence and kindness.
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