Reflections of an educational futurist at the intersection of learning, ecology, spirituality, the arts, and democracy.


  • About

    Kathleen Kesson is a professor, researcher, author, and consultant with expertise in curriculum theory, design and development, personalized learning, arts in education, democratic schooling, home schooling and unschooling, and teacher inquiry.

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  • New Book

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  • Excerpt

    He was holding a grasshopper by its hind legs and attempting to feed it a stem of grass.

    “Hey, what’s up?” (One of my top ten open-ended questions.)

    “He was drowning in a puddle.  I saved him.”

    “Hmmh.  So what are you doing?” (Another of my top ten.)

    “I’m trying to figure out how its jaws work,” he replied, staring intently at the creature.

    “Well, what have you found out?”

    “It has lips and teeth and it spit out a brown juice when I picked it up.”

    “Eeooh, gross,” I said (My surefire way of ensuring the boys’ intense interest in the natural world.)

    “But I still can’t figure out how its jaws work.”

    Read full excerpt from chapter 4:

    Doing “Good Science”:
    On the Virtues of Simply Messing About


  • Unschooling in Paradise gets to the heart of teaching and learning because for Kathleen young people are flesh and blood minds, bodies, and spirits set in the context of their time, not some researcher’s construct. And she tells one mean story along the way.

    Chris Mercogliano, author of Making It Up as We Go Along and In Defense of Childhood: Protecting Kids’ Inner Wildness
  • Dr. Kesson’s thinking and writing create useful bridges between leading edge educational scholarship and the practical concerns of teachers and parents… it’s a vitally important book for helping the general public understand the possibilities of education beyond mass schooling.

    Ron Miller, Ph.D., author, What Are Schools For?: Holistic Education in American Culture and Free Schools, Free People: Education and Democracy After the 1960s
  • Kathleen Kesson is a poet—a lyrical, beckoning and righteously angry poet…(she) is uncommonly generous in her willingness to so vividly share the magnificent stories of her children learning the world.

    Sheri Leafgren, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Teacher Education, Miami University, author of Reuben's Fall: A Rhizomatic Analysis of Disobedience in Kindergarten

Unschooling in Paradise | More testimonials