You can join the event at the scheduled time by going here (Zoom)!

In this workshop we hope to plumb the depths of what it means to agree, or not, to participating in the experiences of your life. The notion of consent is related to agreement, permission, trust, autonomy, self-determination and self-direction on the one hand, with coercion, compulsion, control, pressure, violation, abuse, authority, and hierarchy presenting some of the challenges to consent.

Is consent to some externally presented alternative adequate for the life-learning of any individual? Is consent primarily a factor in negotiating life with other people?

Do you want to attend this workshop? If you say yes, does that mean you want to do everything it involves? When do you get to decide whether or not you are comfortable with a certain activity? Should it be a group decision? Can you change your mind? Did you have these options in your own educational experience? What does it mean to ‘consent’ to something in your life?

We will endeavor to structure the workshop with awareness that there are many actions on the path from external control to a climate of mutual trust, including:

  • Asking questions without knowing the answer;
  • Embracing vulnerability;
  • Trusting yourself;
  • Modelling trust;
  • Listening actively;
  • Creating horizontal relationships;
  • Embracing chaos and uncertainty;
  • Failing forward;
  • Being curious;
  • Being authentic;
  • Being passionate;
  • Being compassionate;
  • Being patient

For the conversations in this workshop, we gather inspiration from many sources, including Je’anna Clements,, Surviving Teachers, Sociocracy, the Wanderbus, the Alliance for Self-Directed Education, and Evolving Education’s ‘The Learning Expedition’.

About the Presenter:

From Sidney Morris:

I spent the first six years of my life on a farm in Pennsylvania. I’m now spending my seventies on Chappaquiddick Island, off Martha’s Vineyard Island, in Massachusetts, USA. with my spouse Margaret (72), daughter Lily (39) and son Elliot (35). In between, I ate sheep in Russia, rescued a chimpanzee in the Congo, taught sailing in Zambia, learned Spanish in Mexico, made a movie in Ecuador, meditated in India, and started an independent school and a public charter school, a community center, and a maritime adventure program on Martha’s  Vineyard. I have lived on Chappaquiddick for 45 years, raising a family and working as carpenter, photographer, coffee house manager, tractor driver, film editor, community center coordinator, sailboat captain and teacher. As former Education Director and Ambassador-at-large of the FARM Institute, I was devoted to helping kids figure out how to grow good food – happily, efficiently and sustainably.

It took my first 30 years to remember how to be a self-directed learner, the next thirty years to discover how to reawaken and empower that identity in young people, and currently I’m doing whatever I can to support young people in their pursuit and process of self/directed learning (while they save our world!) Mostly I love animals, sailing, languages and building stuff! I was delivering library books in a regional library system for two years to explore local libraries and their unequalled potential for supporting self-directed learning. I’m currently piloting the Wanderbus with kids who plan their own adventures as an alternative to being in compulsory school settings, (a cousin of ‘Flying Squads’). We recently organized a gathering to imagine, plan and organize cooperative multi-age programs for kids who choose to do their learning together in the Island communities outside of/instead of school. Stay tuned…