originally page 332 of The Big Book of Unschooling

Every year there are a dozen unschooling get-togethers, and the number is increasing. Some are expensive and some are not. Some involve camping or are one-day conferences. Some are in hotels. Usually the greatest expenses are travel and lodging. If there were college courses on unschooling, many parents would (ironically) take them. What we have instead are conferences.

At a homeschooling conference, one can see curriculum sales tables, and other businesses thriving on sales to homeschoolers.

At an unschooling conference, one can see families who have not spent money on a curriculum at all, but who are living in the real world, doing things they might not have had the opportunity to do if their children were in school. There are speakers and discussions.

When deciding whether it's worth the money to go to an unschooling conference, factor in the money you saved by not buying a curriculum for each child. Count it as research for the parents, a learning experience for the children and a vacation for the family.

If your children are younger, you might gain a great deal of confidence from seeing the interactions of families with older children and teens, and perhaps from speaking with some of those older unschoolers yourself, or watching them in social interactions.

Knowing you're not the only ones can take you a long way toward peace and confidence. Seeing evidence of the peace and happiness that can come of living in this way might be worth the cost of attending a conference at least once, fairly early in your unschooling years.

Meeting other unschoolers, hearing their voices and seeing their eyes will give you a connection that books and websites cannot provide.

Always Learning Live Unschooling Symposium (two or three per year)

Sandra Dodd's speaking schedule