About This Blog

Adventures in Free Schooling was started for several reasons: to have a dialogue about democratic, alternative, creative, and popular education and critical pedagogy; to share resources on teaching and learning that is geared towards anti-oppression and liberation; to discuss the history of schools and their impact on our society; to explore current models and experiments in alternative education, teaching, and learning; and more.

The discussions and topics found here have a heavy focus on history and the relation between workplace democracy and learning-place democracy. This blog is also dedicated to education that is focused on fighting societal injustices and creating liberation through learning and teaching. Last, but not least, Adventures in Free Schooling is a space that’s purpose is to create new and innovative ideas for alternative learning places and critical teaching methods.

What is a free school?

Although the point here is not to argue that free schools are the best or only way to go, this blog does believe that the philosophies of free schools are significantly important and should be considered by all that are interested in creating alternative learning environments aimed at social justice and change.

Free schools can have many definitions, operate in many fashions, and have different purposes. While this website could potentially be applicable to many different styles, freeschooling.org is specifically designed with the intention of working towards free schools that exhibit the following characteristics:

  • Free socially. By being free socially, free schools do not attempt to use bribery, coercion, force, or punishment to control its members. The individuals and community that makes up the free schools have collective and autonomous freedom to learn what they want, when they want, and how they want.
  • Free economically. These free schools are free to attend or be a part of (or, if they do have a cost of some sort, they will not keep out any persons because they are not able to afford said cost). Free schools use their ingenuity and creativeness where other schools use their money.
  • Anti-oppression. Free schools are anti-every form of oppression and represent this in their philosophies and actions.
  • Alternative approaches to learning and teaching. Free schools recognize that there is no separation between living and learning – they are one in the same. Thus, free schools may offer classes but they also attempt to help the process of learning through actions and activities such as: workshops, mentoring, field-trips, organizing, participation in community events, activism, discussions, playing, sitting and thinking, socializing, doing, working, reading, tutoring, and many more. Additionally, free schools recognize a great deal of learning happens outside of the free schools and they do not attempt to control this. Instead, they embrace it.
  • Breaking the teacher-student dichotomy. Free schools recognize that someone does not have to have a “certificate” in teaching to be a teacher. They recognize that everyone is both a teacher and a learner. On top of this, the process of learning should not be done to someone – but rather it should be done by someone. Lastly, this requires that the processes of learning and teaching be recognized as a joint process, and that teaching is inherently a process of learning.
  • Democratic. Free schools are, at the very least, run in a democratic or complete consensus fashion.


1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Creative Life Institute  |  January 3, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    Absolutely love your blog! So rich in information and inspiration. As an MA student at Chester University (UK) – Creative Practices in Education this blog is a valuable resource. I’m specialising in self-directed learning and sociocratic education. Thank you! I will be following with interest.


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