Our 5 minutes of fame and advocacy


Here is a link to our television debut for those of you that missed it….

Free Range Kids

What an amazing experience for us all.

It started out when a show that Dayna Martin and her family were in screened here.  (Check out her blog – thesparklingmartins)  It totally misrepresented unschooling and friends of ours emailed the programme and told them about us.  They contacted us and asked if we would be interested in being part of a documentary.  I said straight away I was keen,  as I am so trusting.  But after several long talks to a producer I felt totally happy and convinced they wanted to set the record straight about unschooling and how it looks in New Zealand.  It never occurred to me that everyone else wouldn’t feel the same.  Many homeschooling friends warned us not to do it.

Eventually another family agreed to be a part of it, and after earthquakes delaying filming, we had our experience of a film crew here!  The children just loved it.  I was blown away at how keen they all were to talk about their lives and they loved being interviewed, I was really proud of them.  The TV guys were fun and respectful.  They stayed for dinner and made arrangements to come the following week.

We met at the public library where Hannah and a friend were busking.  John, the presenter was buzzing with unschooling and said it had made him rethink his own parenting!  He had downloaded books and read them.  I knew then it would all be fine.  We headed out to the river  for a swim and after they had filmed enough John put his togs on and jumped into the river shouting   “I want to go back and  be unschooled!!”

It was a couple of months later and I was at WOMAD when the programme aired.  I had this surreal time.  It was just on  sunset/dusk.  I was standing in the middle of the food village where hundreds of people were milling around me, there were lights everywhere in the trees, the last glow of sunset in the sky.  Smells of a dozen countries wafted through the air, it was warm and balmy.  Filling the night was  the frenetic throbbing of the music on the nearest stage.  The minute the programme ended I was flooded with texts!  Wonderful, happy, congratulatory texts!!  I was high on it all, with out ever seeing what it was like!

The next week was our true 5 minutes of fame!  We were recognised in the street, strangers rang me…What a buzz!  But the best bit and  the whole  reason we had wanted to do it was when a woman  came to see me and said, because of the programme she was inspired to unschool her children!!!   Yeeeha!!

See what you think!


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