podcastSeason 4

Ep 178: From Schoolish to Self-directed

By July 10, 2020 No Comments

Audio Producer

Juan P. Perez


Fatima Mookadam


Valerie Anderson

We are so hyped about today’s episode because the day of publishing, July 10th, marks our zeroversary, the 4-year anniversary of Episode 0! It’s been quite a journey since Akilah started Fare of the Free Child podcast back in the summer of 2016. Even though it started from a painful place, we feel so very thankful to the community that has come from this podcast—our listeners and members of our Make it Happen Family—for the support and love through all these years. Here you can listen to Episode 0, Welcome and Why This Show, where it all began. Today, in the middle of some painful realities, we hold on to ways to move outside these injustices. We stay resilient through happiness, not afraid to speak up, from a space of awareness and love. We invite you to celebrate that with us today, doing whatever feels good for you.


Akilah recently launched From Schoolish to Self-directed, an audio course in support of the transition that many are experiencing as this pandemic ushers in a swift shift from conventional learning ideas over to innovative ones that center people and learning in various ways, using technology and creativity more than memorization and predefined curriculum.

To celebrate four years of Fare Of The Free Child, Akilah announces Raising Free People Networks first Presence Counselor, Leslie Bray, who you already have heard from and will be joining us on today’s episode. Leslie is  a community organizer and will be doing one-on-one support for the people transitioning from schoolish to self-directed ways of living and learning. Here you can listen to previous episodes with Leslie giving us some insights: Self-Care + Sacred Space and Leslie Talks Conscious Community Collectives. 

Akilah and Leslie chat about boundaries and self-care as we are constantly deschooling, not necessarily transitioning.

Part of the conditioning that we carry based on a schoolish mindset is the comparison. We’ve all been indoctrinated at different levels, and much of this conditioning comes from a colonized space. Comparing yourself and your children with others and their processes will duplicate a schoolish setting at home. Leslie invites us to put self-care (ours and our children’s) above all of these insecurities. 

Observe, ask, and listen, that is how you get to support, facilitate and advocate for your children. It is not true that being self-directed means that children have to figure out everything by themselves. The key is to figure out when is enough for you as a parent to help and advocate for them, by establishing boundaries in order to nurture self-care skills. Leslie also points out that we need different things at different times, as we are dynamic also our behaviors and practices at home will depend on each person and circumstances. Everyone is different but we all need communal support. You have to want to be free, you have to want to learn, and be willing to question everything you thought as part of your liberation work. 


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