An experiential session exploring the colonisation of childhood by adultism—the foundational oppression underlying all others that must be released for us all to be free.
Hacking a Career in Esports
An interactive session focussing on the trends in esports and the career options within them.
Kaameel Chicktay has grown up unschooling. He is a Dota2 Shoutcaster, Analyst and Content Creator Currently carving a career in esports. Kaameel has been self directing his learning the skills he needs to pursue meaningful work in the growing esports scene.
Scaffolding: An Exercise in Supportive Learning Strategies
The scaffolding exercise that SiyafundisaNa proposes to facilitate speaks to an inherent need for playful learning and exploration in various spaces of learning. Scaffolding is a pedagogical tool used to support learning processes in various ways. SiyafundisaNa proposes to make use of scaffolding as a pedagogical tool by encouraging participants to take part in an exercise that references the act of construction. Scaffolding is a temporary structure that supports and guides a building during the process of its creation. Similarly, the scaffolding exercise guides those who participate into a process of collaborative discovery and creative problem solving. The scaffolding exercise encourages dialogue around issues and questions pertaining to diversity and proposes to create a participatory energy between SiyafundisaNa and those who take part in the experience.
Puleng Plessie and Genevieve Louw
SiyafundisaNa is a collective. A collaboration. A conversation. A process of questioning. An investigation. A constructive deconstruction. A productive failure. A multilingual means to communicate. A learning tool. An act of resistance. A return to play.
Puleng Plessie and Genevieve Louw started SiyafundisaNa as an attempt to rethink/problematise art educational practice through performance and dialogue informed by the experience of co-facilitation and experimentation. SiyafundisaNa seeks to use methodology that questions institutional language and culture by placing emphasis on the importance of creative practice as an invaluable form of knowledge production.
Discussing Our Contingence
About contingence education – self- and world- learning that remembers the finiteness of the human experience and our complete dependence upon the planet.
The phrase contingence education is inspired by the philosophical concept of contingent beings, or beings that can exist or not exist. To the best of our knowledge, we humans are contingent beings, whose beginnings and subsequent moments of continued existence hinge on things beyond our control. And our experiences as humans will end, regardless of how intelligent or powerful or autonomous we think we are.
These aspects of the human experience – its limitedness and its reliance – can be important understandings for any educative practice that will move us beyond current oppressive and destructive ways of being, including unschooling and self-directed education. Dominant models of education tell us that our universe can eventually be known in its fullness through our own physical interaction with it, and that, if we keep educating ourselves in the same ways about the same things, it will someday be enough. This type of education will never be enough, however, because there are limitations on our existence, including the time limit of our existence itself. And comprehending everything we can about everything there is should not be the goal of ways of knowing anyway, especially for beings whose existence is limited.
Perhaps our goal could be to better understand how/who we should be as humans in this larger universe that we will never fully understand as limited, finite beings. This is the goal of contingence education: rather than trying to know everything there is to know, contingence education is concerned with the question, How can we best be human – limited, finite, dependent, thinking – on a planet that does not require us for its existence, though we require it? The idea of humans’ existing in tune with the environment on which they depend is nothing new, nor is the awareness of humanity’s inherent limitations; indeed, these understandings have surely kept humanity going this long. This session, then, serves as a time to discuss past and future examples/ideas related to contingence education.
Kelly Limes-Taylor Henderson, Ph.D.
Kelly Limes-Taylor Henderson is an assistant professor of education at the University of North Georgia and is interested in non-dominant conceptualizations of education. Her five children, aged two to 17, are unschoolers and awesome humans.
Kelly shares some of her thoughts on her website.
Let’s make some zines
Find out about how zines have played a role in counter-cultural movements for decades and continue to be a go-to method for artists, activists and change-makers to share their ideas with others. Explore libraries of exciting zines both in print and online and connect with other zine-makers in South Africa and elsewhere.
This will be a drop-in, self-paced session where you can relax into your project for as long or as short as you like.
What to bring/ prepare
Zine-making does not necessarily require any planning – it is in essence a paper-collage-doodle-book. Paper and drawing materials will be available at the session for you to experiment with. However, zine-making is also about personal expression so it can be useful to bring your own content/ raw materials along to provide inspiration and help you get started. Drawings or sketches, magazine cut-outs, writing or poetry – anything that inspires or represents what it is you want to share in your zine.
Kathryn is an artist and a foundation phase educator. Kathryn used to be part of a zine-making project in Cape Town, where they self-published and sold zines at local bookstores and pop-up sales.
Unschooling in a Neocolonial South Africa: A Personal Journey
The role of the government and the private sector in a post apartheid South Africa is nothing short of dissapointing. Given the ideals that were declared prior to the new dispensation, our children are in danger and are likely to fall for and take on a neo-colonialistic face.
Attending top tier schools in the country during the 90’s, opened up my mind to questions that not too many were keen to answer. While many parents and children wanted to attended model-C institutions, I was naturally inclined to challenge the schooling system and was mis-understood as a rebel and disruptor who didn’t appreciate quality eduction despite being privilege enough to attend a R200k per annum school.
So this resulted in me experiencing various schooling systems, that were all based on the same stagnant model. At this point, My wife and I decided we would not commit our children to this atrocity of mass mind control.
Since then we have lived a free life with our children and have consequently leaped in bounds to unimagined heights. Aged 6 & 7, the Irish Twins now read by themselves, insist on undertaking tasks by themselves and navigate obstacles unaided by hovering parents.
I imagine this is what most parents want for their children, an independent child who will positively contribute to their society and have a positive impact on any nation they so choose.
This will be packaged in interactive presentation format using.
Personal footage/ images
stock footage to illustrate point
excerpts from documentaries
Langa Klaaste is an unschooling, full time father of two. He is a business owner and professional filmmaker.
Langa’s business website.
Dungeons and Dragons
Interactive session of playing Dungeons and Dragons;
a classic table-top fantasy roleplaying game.
Max 10 people per session.
Recommended age 12+
Anokha and Rahul van Manen
Young Writers Circle
Everything writing related. Come and meet other writers and writing enthusiasts. Share your writing tips, tools, joys and struggles.
Makayla Chicktay & Marley Richards
Unschoolers | Fan Fiction Writers | Role Play Enthusiasts | Original Character Designers
Documenting the Unschooling Journey
We will explore the various ways that one can document the process for personal reflections and look at how this can become part of a collective body of knowledge that will have a uniquely South African voice.
Renuka is a Natural Learning Parent and Natural Learning Researcher.
This session explores the value of documentation in the family’s learning process – to observe, record and interpret how learning is taking place.
You can watch a recording of Renuka’s talk at Learning Reimagined 2017 online.
Young Entrepreneurs’ Circle
Come and share stories, struggle and everything in between about being a young entrepreneur.
Juwayria Asvat is a young unschooler who runs a successful baking business – Crazy for Chocolates Cakes & Bakes. You can read more about about Juwayria’s unschooled journey in her piece, From Boredom to Chocolate: My (Partial) Unschooled Journey in the Living Unschooling Series.
Facebook | Instagram
Education Out Of Context
An interactive, immersive theatrical experience in which we get to participate in and experience what Education Out Of Context really is.
Ché-vanni Beon Davids
Ché-vanni Beon Davids is the Founder and Director of the Re-Imagined Learning Centre, a self directed, free learning space in Johannesburg, possibly the first of such spaces in South Africa. Since its inception, the centre has broadened its focus to become much more of a learning community by connecting and interacting with the community around the centre in order to create and implement an ecological approach to decolonising and reimagining the future, past and present.
A Beginner’s Guide to Unschooling
An introductory, interactive session for folks new to or exploring unschooling.
Unschooler | Reflective Anarchist | Parent | Mis-adventuring Bitchcrafter |Speaker at Learning Reimagined 2017
You can view his talk online.
The Sound of 4th Dimensional Learning
What is the nature of your child’s soul, and how does that relate to a cosmological understanding of purpose? Through music and poetic philosophy, we’ll explore the intimate relationship between education, spiritual ascension, healing and our roles in the age of higher consciousness currently embracing our planet.
Joel Karabo Elliott
Composer, multi-instrumentalist, performing artist, teacher-learner, steward of Roots Grown Deep
Play is fundamental to life and learning especially in the Natural Learning paradigm. However, to support this process, a deeper understanding and experience of play by parents and other key adult caregivers is key to the freedom of play in Natural Learning. In this session the common notion that play is just for children and childhood is debunked as the value of play for adults and lifelong playing is explored. Understanding the essential need for play for all helps support children in their play and enable families to lead joyful flourishing lives. How do we find/ create spaces and opportunities to bring more play into individuals, families and societies?
Renuka is a Natural Learning Parent and Natural Learning Researcher.
Play 4 All: Dismantling the barriers to playing and learning
A playful and interactive session on how to create inclusive learning spaces for all children with a focus on children with disabilities. Exploring and understanding disability through a decolonisation lens.
Occupational Therapist and founder of Diketo Inclusive Education, an organization that supports and trains Early Childhood Development (ECD) practitioners and primary school teachers on how to build inclusive play and learning spaces for all children with a focus on disability.
Let’s Share – Photography
For anyone into photography or interested in getting into it. Let’s share our photography tips and tricks and explore ways on getting our work out there.
Aisha is a teen unschooler with multiple passions. She’ll be sharing her passion in photography in this open session. Check out her work on Instagram
Representations of Unschooling in Avatar, The Last Airbender
Summoning all the Avatar The Last Airbender Fans! The series is filled with representations of unschooling and adult/young people relationships! Let’s chat about them
Khadeeja Asvat is a young unschooler who has watched Avatar, The Last Airbender more times than she can count and has spent even more time dissecting the series.
Khadeeja’s piece on #LivingUnschooling is here
Want to Host an Open Session
We’re adding the open sessions as they are confirmed. If you want to offer an open session, there’s a space to do so as part of the registration form, or you can send an email after you have completed your registration. If you’re in two minds and need help in refining your offering you can get that discussion going in the Learning Reimagined Conference Facebook group or send an email to discuss first.
You don’t have to be an expert in something in order to host a session. That you care about or are interested in something is more than enough. You can offer to be a space holder for the session, and hold the space together for people to gather and share around a specific topic.
Possible types of sessions:
- Q & A sessions
- Interactive Sessions
- Meet ups around a specific theme/issue
- Games (Dungeons and Dragons, Werewolf, Frisbee…)
- Sharing an idea/proposal/research/project
- Advocating for a project
- The list is much longer, but you get the idea…