WELCOME TO VIRTUAL NEUC
We are thrilled to announce our FREE, month long virtual Northeast Unschooling Conference!
This four week long à la carte event series will come to you every Saturday and Sunday in August, with each weekend’s events surrounding a unique theme. These events will be open to anyone in the community, anywhere in the world, completely free, with options to attend both live or view recorded sessions (with the exception of support spaces and certain discussions which will not be recorded).
Come one come all, we look forward to seeing old friends and new faces and having a time to connect with our community.
We are using the platform of Zoom, and all NEUC room passwords will be: NEUC2020
As this conference is free to all, we ask that you consider a small donation to our GoFundMe page by clicking the 'Donate Now' button below. To learn more about how this money will be used, feel free to visit our Donate page for details.
WEEK ONE: Welcome to Unschooling
Opening Statements 1pm - 2pm EST
Come join the unique virtual opening ceremony for NEUC 2020! Whether or not you planned to attend our now canceled in person conference, whether or not you are planning to attend other workshops over the course of this virtual conference, the opening ceremony is a time for us to congregate with community, get to know each other, play some games, and experience some classic NEUC traditions, surrounded by our unschooling community!
We can't wait to see you there!
Meet and Greet Resource Share 2pm - 3pm EST
Unschooling parents, families, unschooled people, and those interested in the path and exploring unschooling are welcome to attend this virtual Resource Share & Meet and Greet. Feel free to come with your questions, insecurities, moments of joy, and best resources ready to share with the community.
The Big 6 Panel & Q&A 3pm - 4pm EST
The Big Six: Sleep; Chores; Food; Electronic Gaming; Passive Media (Netflix/YouTube); Personal Hygiene; How do we navigate these complicated waters within our unique families, in a way that best supports our children, and every member of our families? These topics are complex and personal, and often constitute the most challenging aspects of unschooling for many families. Come prepared to ask questions and be engaged by our diverse panel of parents with a wide range of experience in these topics. There will be plenty of time for questions and open discussion!
Grown Unschoolers' Panel 2pm - 3pm EST
Ever wonder what grown unschoolers think of the unschooling philosophy? Do they wish anything had been done differently, or have any regrets? What kind of life paths do they take, and where do they end up as adults?
This beloved NEUC tradition gives parents and young unschoolers a unique opportunity to ask a panel of grown unschoolers the questions that are on their minds. Our diverse panel features a wide range of life experiences, higher education choices, family structures, and more. Come prepared with your questions for our panelists!
Teen Unschoolers' Panel 3pm - 4pm EST
Come one, come all to the annual NEUC Teen Panel! This incredible, diverse group of teenagers will reflect on growing up unschooled, discuss their plans for the future, and answer your questions.
Whether you are looking forward to having teenage unschoolers and hoping to gain insight into their world, reflecting on when your kids were teens, or wanting to hear the perspective of other teenage unschoolers like yourself, this group of young people is here to answer your questions with empathy and vulnerability. Come prepared with questions, or just show up and see with these amazing young people have to say.
WEEK TWO: Unschoolers Young and Old
This CLOSED support space is for those RAISED as unschoolers ONLY. Unschoolers need time and space away from pressure to represent the philosophy, to talk about the good, the bad, and the ugly of growing up in this unique minority. Unschoolers are welcome to attend whether or not they like the philosophy. All unschoolers are welcome, but this event is more suitable for teenage and grown unschoolers.
College Bound Unschoolers 1pm - 2pm EST
Are you a parent of a young unschooler who might consider college? Or a teenage unschooler looking to figure out what your next steps look like? Maybe you are just sick of hearing "but how will they get into college" and you want some great anecdotes with which to respond. Unschoolers, unschooling parents, and those curious about unschooling are welcome to attend this discussion.
This discussion will be led by Rhianon Small and Emmett DuPont. Emmett and Rhianon are both grown lifelong unschoolers with college degrees, who entered college in vastly different ways and had vastly different experiences. During this discussion, we will talk about transcripts, the admissions process, transferring community college credits, the academic demands of college and academic readiness, school socializing and "fitting in" as an unschooler, and more.
Careers for Unschoolers 3pm - 4pm EST
The world is full of exciting possibilities for young unschoolers entering adulthood and figuring out their paths in life. College is one path, but it's not the right choice for everyone. In this discussion, we will talk about the wide range of opportunities possible for unschoolers, outside of higher education. Travel, volunteer opportunities, starting your own business or company, entering the workforce, creating ways to turn your dream into an income... how can parents best support unschoolers as they find their own way? This discussion will be led by grown unschooler and YouTuber Alex Patterson.
WEEK THREE: Parents and Caregivers
My Kids Are Grown, Now What? 1pm - 2pm EST
My Kids Are Grown, Now What? is an NEUC favorite. This open discussion group is a support space for parents of grown unschoolers to come together and discuss the joys and challenges of parenting adult unschoolers, life transitions as young people grow into adults, fears and hopes for ourselves and for our children, and celebrate our families with other unschooling parents who truly understand our life walk.
This discussion circle will be moderated by Brenda LaPorte, parent of two grown lifelong unschoolers.
Primary Caregiver Support Group 1pm - 2pm EST
Being the primary caregiver in an unschooling family is full of unique joys, struggles, insecurities, and rewards! This space is for the primary caregivers in unschooling families to join together in support and community with others who truly understand unschooling. This discussion will be moderated by Kevin Patterson, primary caregiving father to now grown lifelong unschooled triplets.
There will be another support space starting at 2PM for primary workers in unschooling families. We recognize that these distinctions are not always clear, and encourage those who are the primary worker AND caregiver to attend both sessions.
Primary Worker Support Group 3pm - 4pm EST
Being the primary worker in an unschooling family is full of unique joys, struggles, insecurities, and rewards! This space is for the primary workers in unschooling families to join together in support and community with others who truly understand unschooling. This discussion will be moderated by Deb Rossing, primary household income provider to a now grown lifelong unschooling son.
There is another support space starting at 1PM for primary caregivers in unschooling families. We recognize that these distinctions are not always clear, and encourage those who are the primary worker AND caregiver to attend both sessions.
WEEK FOUR: Our Community Now and in the Future
Mental Health For Unschoolers and Their Families 1pm - 2pm EST
Mental health is a vital part of our lived experience, however, sometimes it can feel uncomfortable to talk about and explore. This discussion is an opportunity to talk openly about mental health in all its facets in a supportive, nonjudgmental space, specifically designed to work within the unschooling philosophy. This event will not be recorded.
Rhianon Small will act as moderator and facilitator. Although she is available to talk privately about anything gone over in this discussion, Rhianon is not a licensed clinician, and asks you to refer to the list of resources provided during the workshop or upon request if you or someone you know is experiencing mental distress.
Community Conversation: Racism & Unschooling 3pm - 4pm EST
Join us for a prompt led discussion on racism in our community. We believe it is important to foster an environment of anti-racism at our conference and in the unschooling community at large and this discussion will be the first of many to work towards that goal. Come prepared to listen, reflect, and learn.
We would like to thank Maleka Diggs for consulting with us during this conference and for her assistance in creating prompts for this community discussion.
LGBTQ+ Support Group 1pm - 2pm EST
What does it mean to be part of multiple minorities, and specifically to be part of the unschooling community AND LGBTQ+ communities, while knowing that the unschooling community has often embraced queer and transphobia? How do we balance these multiple identities, and assert our right to exist in the unschooling movement? Please join us for this LGBTQ+ unschooling support & discussion group! Families with any LGBTQ+ members are welcome and encouraged to attend and join us in community. Allies are welcome, but LGBTQ+ voices will be centered.
COVID 19 Community Impacts 2pm - 3pm EST
COVID-19 has impacted our entire world; every facet of our lives, our interactions, and our communities. For some of us, this means the loss of a job or a loved one, for almost all of us, this means the loss of events, activities, and opportunities we were looking forward to (including meeting in person for NEUC!). Many unschooling families travel, own small businesses, and are deeply engaged with community opportunities and activities that have now been canceled or shifted to online. As unschoolers, we've watched as the nation grapples with home educating their children, and a new wave of families begin their journeys as home and unschoolers. This community conversation is designed to give us a space to talk about the ways COVID-19 is impacting our lives and our communities.
Closing Statements 3pm - 4pm EST
No matter if you attended one virtual event or all of them, please join us for the closing statements of NEUC 2020. This will be an opportunity for us to gather as a community, discuss the events of the month, do some last-minute networking and resource sharing, get to know each other as a community, meet all the attendees face-to-face, make new connections and friends, and participate in some enduring NEUC traditions. Can't wait to see you there!