Un In The Sun Conference OCT 5th – 9th

Thank You SO very much for giving your time to help advocate, model, and “Welcome” others where they happen to be through the journey! You have touched us ALL! Many Thanks!
Teresa Graham Brett & Family!
Pam Laricchia, Lissy & Family!
Kathy,  Justin & Joe Brown!
The Sabourin Family!
Emily, Cathy Monroe Williams & Family!
Mike, Tanya Sharkey & Family!
Susan Williams & Family!

Dennis Wolf & Family! Our DJ extraordinaire!     (Thank you for bringing an extreme amount of equipment with you to host our Dance and Talent show and to run all of our sound & lifestream needs for the conference.   You know how to bring it!  To book your own event near Jacksonville…      email: wolfdw1968@gmail.com   Phone: 904-352-6130

And WAY too many to list! XxOo


I wanted to thank everyone for a great conference. Kim, Sandi, Elizabethand everyone who volunteered created such an amazing environment for us. I loved being able to connect with people throughout the 5 days in multiple sessions and in between. Even while floating in the ocean at the water park! Thank you for your openness and willingness to put it out there! SSUMS was a fabulous gathering and I loved meeting so many dads. It was such a joy to see the younger people, arms full of balloons, covered in henna tattoos, presenting and sharing in sessions, and just being who they ARE. I am still processing my experiences and what I learned from everyone.

Kathy Brown

Justin and I had such a great time at the Un in the Sun unschooling conference this week!! A big thank you to Elizabeth Mahaney Kim Koppisch Polce Susan Williams Sandi Lefebvre (& all the others I’m not FB connected to) for all your hard work in making this conference the most heart-warming unschooling experience we have ever had!! Justin Brown, you were awesome!! Thank you for trusting this process, for your sharp wit at just the right moments, and for your excellent writing and editing skills! Joe Brown, we couldn’t have done it without you!! Thank you for being there! Teresa Graham Brett, meeting you in person meant so much to me. You grounded me in so many ways, and I’m so grateful for your passion to help transform the traditional beliefs we have about children and childhood. Pam Laricchia, thank you for sharing your journey, hearing your unschooling experience filled me up. In fact, we’re grateful for all those who attended and who shared their experiences, struggles, joys and challenges on this path with such candor. The love and support we felt will keep us going for a long, long, time!!

My sweet Mom and I are back in Texas soil! We loved our quick visit to your lovely conference! Thank you all for your kind words of love and support! I hope you felt my love and encouragement for the exciting paths you’ve all chosen! I’m here if you need me! Same goes for my Mother! LOVE YOU ALL!

I’m am so grateful to have had the opportunity to attend this conference with my children. Thank you so much to the organizers and a big thank you also to Nance Confer for your part in making it happen. Watching my children interact with everyone and loving every minute of it made my heart so happy. We were welcomed with open arms even though we didn’t get there until late in the day on Tuesday. This was so appreciated since it was all very spur of the moment for us. As a newly widowed, now single mom, I wasn’t sure how we would fit into the mix. This wonderful group of people took us in and made us feel like family when we needed it most. It is amazing to be a part of this unschooling tribe. The kids and I are so looking forward to the next time!

It’s a few days late but I wanted to thank the organizers for a great conference. One of my first favourite things was actually the fantastic Un in the Sun bag and all of the goodies that came in it. I know I am going to use that bag and the cups constantly from now on. The speakers were fabulous. The resort was practically perfect. I also loved and appreciated that there was babysitting and I was able to go to more talks as a result.  Thank you!

W.P.                                                                                                                                   We had a wonderful time. Amazing group of parents and young people. The presenters and the audiences were incredibly open, honest, and insightful, it’s going to take a long time to fully digest all of these new ideas and concepts.

Someone mentioned checking in a couple of years from now, with the same presenters and attendees to see how we are all doing. I vote yes! However, I also agree with someone else that suggested we have another less organized event in the interim. We love going camping and Florida has one of the best park systems in the country.

Kim, Sandi, and Liz, big thanks to you all for making this happen. All of your hard work made the event effortless for the attendees. Can’t wait to meet again. We need to maintain an Un In The Sun page to stay in touch and share thoughts and links between events.  Sláinte!

We made it home!

I wanted to thank everyone for the wonderful week! We truly enjoyed spending time with everyone and meeting so many new and wonderful people. You all are certainly a lot of fun to be around and a great group of parents and friends. I can’t wait for 2015 (hint hint)

Where Unschoolers Consciously Connect

Screen shot 2014-01-15 at 8.21.40 PMImagine…

Immersing yourself into unschooling and exploring new ideas with like-minded parents and children.  Where you can discover how to be more present with your children and further embrace partnership parenting.

Now Imagine….

Sharing this time with your children on a beautiful beach in sunny Florida with other unschooling families, noted speakers, and conscious parents. Add a gaming room, pools, waterslides and paddleboats…you will never want to leave!

Join us on October 5-9, 2014 at the TradeWinds Island Resort on St. Pete Beach, Florida.    

Because we value a space where…

  • children are supported in pursuing their interests, dreams, and ideas.  
  • respect, honor and consideration are equal for both adults and children
  • children learning from the “real” world is accepted, supported and encouraged.

You are raising a spirit throbbing with its own signature

– Dr. Shefali Tsabary, “The Conscious Parent”



Teresa Graham Brett

TeresaGrahamBrettHeadshotThe author of the pivotal Parenting for Social Change, Teresa Graham Brett is a thought leader and provoking speaker in the peaceful parenting movement.

From her biography:
“Teresa Graham Brett lives her passion for creating social change by combining her work in social justice education with parenting. After graduating from law school, she opted to serve the cause of social change as an advocate, educator, and leader at three large public universities across the United States.
Her life was transformed after the births of two children. In spite of her espoused professional values, she realized that she had accepted, without question, the dominant cultural beliefs that adults have the right to control and coerce children.
The children in her life have challenged her to live according to the values of liberation, freedom and respect as a parent and human being.
Using her experience in facilitating transformative learning, she began her own intensive learning journey. It led her to a deeper understanding that the ways our society treats children sets the foundation for all other forms of injustice.
As a writer and consultant she works with other parents to do inner work as a foundation for outer action that ultimately liberates individuals, groups and communities.
As individuals and a society we can create a base of love, wholeness, authenticity, and integrity that is the foundation for just and empowering relationships. And, as we are each reflections of the world, the world is changed by our commitment to wholeness, liberation, and freedom.”

Pam Laricchia 


Pam Laricchia has been happily unschooling her three children since 2002 and watching them explore their interests and passions has been an incredible learning experience in itself. With her oldest two now adults, she loves writing about what she’s learned about unschooling and life along the way.
You can find her on her blog (http://livingjoyfully.ca/blog/) or check out her books (http://livingjoyfully.ca/books/). You also might enjoy signing up for her free intro email series, Exploring Unschooling (http://livingjoyfully.ca/newsletter/), as part of her newsletter. For Pam, unschooling is
all about learning freely and living joyfully, and she’s excited to spend the conference doing just that with us.

Kathy Brown & Justin Brown

Kathy&JustinKathy Brown spent a decade as a reporter and editor at The Tampa Tribune before resigning to become a full-time caregiver to her newborn son, Justin. That decision 18 years ago led her and her husband, Joe, to investigate alternative ways to parent and educate. After learning about unschooling and observing their son’s natural ability to learn on his own, they decided unschooling fit perfectly with their parenting style.

From the beginning, Justin has experienced the freedom to explore his own interests at his own pace; he has never been punished or forced to learn anything. Now, at 18, he says, “Unschooling has made me more of my own person so I could really decide who I am and the things that I like.”

Justin’s unique journey continues to be the joyful and rich experience that Kathy began writing about when Justin was 4 years old. As a parenting columnist for a local women’s magazine, Kathy wrote of a world unlike the one in which she grew up … a new world where it’s possible to parent with non-punitive discipline, with trust and mutual respect, and with the welcomed acceptance of emotional release. (She is currently compiling her parenting columns, along with new commentary, into a book titled Parenting the Soul.)

Kathy and Justin are happy to share their journey in support of others who choose to parent and educate differently … who choose a new world full of opportunity and empowerment for both themselves and for their children.

Kevin Sabourin

family costa rica dressy

Kevin Sabourin is a husband, father, entrepreneur and supporter of Unschooling as well as a friend to the Un-In-The-Sun conference. His passion and focus is to inspire, build community and promote self-designed living.

Kevin, and his wife Kelly, have embraced Unschooling and enjoy the experience along with their three wonderful kids – Killian (11), Kirin (8) and Keigin (5). Always unschooled, the children understand freedom and the pursuit of one’s dreams. One of Kevin’s favorite past-times is to support his kids in their passionate pursuits such as; building websites or tree houses, learning to play guitar or ride a bike, creating herb gardens or storybooks. He is a perpetual creator and loves to be able to share those experiences with his family.

He also like to share those experiences with others. As the co-owner of Rethinking Everything, an 18 year old conference dedicated to Unschooling and conscious family living, Kevin gets to play the role of curator and facilitator. His natural curiosity and desire to connect with people means he gets to “play” at work every single day.  Visit Rethinkingeverything.com to learn more about the upcoming conference in August, 2014!

Kevin will be the first to admit, that he often forgets to celebrate that daily playtime and instead opts to worry or fret – which is why opportunities like Rethinking Everything and Un-In-The-Sun mean so much to him. They represent an opportunity to re-connect with ourselves, our partners, our kids and our community.

Speaker Topics


Engaged Parenting: Engaging our hearts, minds, and souls to redefine the parent-child relationship

When we are engaged parents, we are committing to parenting in a way that challenges our cultural and institutional definitions of the role of parent and the role of child. However, even when we have rejected these societal expectations, we retain unconscious beliefs, values, and attitudes that influence our behavior as parents and sabotage our efforts to create empowering relationships with children. Bringing to awareness what we have learned since childhood requires engaging our hearts, minds, and souls in processes that liberate children, but most importantly liberate us, as parents and human beings. We will be discussing the big picture and then I will talk specifically about what processes we can use to be liberation-centered parents.

After the Blow-up: Dealing with blame, shame, and guilt

As unschooling parents we make lots of promises. Promises to ourselves about how we’ll be as parents. Promises about how next we won’t lose it, yell, shut down, or walk away the “next time” we’re triggered. Then we break our own promises and we beat ourselves up for it. We’re committed to being different and we sometimes get stuck. Let’s talk about how we can transform anger and frustration and deal with the aftermath of our own shame, blame, and guilt. We’ll talk about how to transform the ways we learn to deal with “negative” emotions from our childhoods to allow us to move through the emotions and find our own unconditional acceptance.


Spinning a Web: The Art of Learning

Unschooling re-imagines learning as a web of connections. Every day our children are building their personal understanding of the world, themselves, and how they dance together. We’ll talk about some of the ways we can support their learning, and the epiphany that has helped me live more deeply in each moment with my own children.

Kids Aren’t Clones: Exploring Our Comfort Zones

Our children are building their own view of the world and sometimes they see things differently than we do. That’s okay because with unschooling we’re not looking to produce a younger edition of ourselves–we want our children to explore and grow into their unique selves. We’ll talk about ways we can navigate those moments when our beliefs clash with their desires.


  • Unschooling is a journey. And like any journey, there are signs along the way that steer you toward your destination. There are also signals, either intuitive or learned, that inform you whether you’re on the right path — your unique path. Despite the obvious roadblocks and unforeseen challenges, the unschooling journey promises immense joy and freedom to families who can trust in the process, as they share startling new territory together and reach memorable milestones along the way.

Join Kathy Brown and her 18-year-old son Justin, who has been unschooled from the beginning, as they discuss the invaluable lessons and insights they have learned over the years. This presentation will help light the way along a shared common course as you learn about:

  • Cultural myths surrounding education and learning
  • Approaches to overcome adult programming and stay true to the inner wisdom that originally brought you to unschooling
  • Ways to get “out of the way” of your unschooler’s desire to discover, and how to trust your child’s own path
  • How to handle questions about socialization, studying and college, and respond to people who “just don’t get it”
  • Why teens are awesome, and how to nurture a mutually respectful relationship with them
  • And much, much more!

No matter where you are on your journey, don’t miss this opportunity to reconnect, recharge and reach the summit of your unschooling success!


  • Kevin will lead a dad’s panel where dads will come together to discuss everything unschooling!  Come with your questions and concerns for an open forum discussion just for dads!  Experienced unschooling dads are welcome to participate to help answer questions.


  • Ever wonder what unschoolers do when they grow up?  Well now is the time to listen and ask questions!  Join 3rd generation unschooler, Emily Williams in a roundtable where discussions will be all about what our grown and almost grown unschoolers are doing now.  All older teens are encouraged to join and share what they are doing, too.  Don’t be shy!


  • Ever want to leave everything behind and travel with your family?  See the world and explore road-schooling?  Michael and Tanya Sharkey, along with their 13 and 11 year old children, have traveled over 50,000 miles as a family together since March of this year!  Join us for this discussion on the places they’ve visited, the experiences their family shared, and the planning they did to take this “leap.”


  • Susan will lead a discussion on defining unschooling and how-to unschool with your family.  Come with your questions and concerns for an open forum discussion on anything unschooling!  Experienced unschoolers are welcome to participate to help answer questions.


When exactly does Un in the Sun get started?

We assume some will arrive a few days early to enjoy the awesome weather and beach. Check in will begin on October 5, 2014 in the afternoon.  The first activities will begin that evening.  Again, a more exact time will be announced closer to the conference.

Where is the Un In the Sun Facebook Group?

Click HERE to find us on Facebook.

I can only make it to one day, can I just register for that day?

Sorry, registration is only available for the entire conference.

What is included in registration?

Your registration with the conference includes all conference activities – speakers, gaming room, Sunshops, MNO – mom’s night out, SSUDS – The Secret Society of Unschooling Dads meetup, the Talent Show, and all other activities put on by Un in the Sun.

I am local and would like to commute. Can I just register for the conference, but not stay at the hotel?

Yes, you have that option. Registration rates will be the same for those who stay at the hotel and those that commute or use another hotel. But please allow us to show you why you will want to stay at this amazing hotel. If you haven’t taken a look at all of the resort’s amenities on our location page, please do! We worked hard to secure the very best pricing so that all families could enjoy a truly awesome vacation with so much built-in fun for the entire family. You will want to stay and have connection time with the families you know and the new families you meet once the sun goes down. Last time we had so much fun in the evening, no one wanted to even go to bed! Your kids will likely want the same. In addition, there are some extra costs to consider associated with not staying at the hotel:

Prices based on 2 adults and 2 children Overnight guests Non-Overnight guests
Standard Guestroom $129 per night $0.00
Parking ($10 per day for 5 days) Included $50.00
Wristbands for resort amenities including Cabanas, Paddle Boats, Slide, Pools, Mini-Golf, Lifesize Chess, Fitness Room, Tennis Courts ($30 per person duration of the conference) Included $120.00
20% Discount card for resort restaurants and bars Included Not available
Total Hotel Fees (taxes not included) $129 per night depending on total nights stayed. $170.00
Conference Registration fees are the same no matter if a family stays on property or not.

In addition, there are some extra costs not associated with staying at the hotel:

* Parking is included for hotel guests registered through the Un in the Sun rate; otherwise it is a $10 per day charge
*in order to use all of the amenities at the hotel, there is a $30 resort fee required for thosenot staying at the hotel to pay a resort fee which gives each person accessibility to all of the amenities offered at the hotel. The resort fee is $30 per person which is good for the entire length of the conference (October 5-9). Commuters will be required to get wristbands at the hotel and they must be worn at all times.
*Only hotel overnight guests will receive a card which entitles them to 20% off all food purchases at hotel restaurants.


What is the Weather like?

Average weather in October in St. Pete Beach – The temperature typically varies from 76°F to 84°F and is rarely below 72°F or above 88°F.  In other words, beautiful!

We are driving down in our RV – where is the best place to camp?

We would prefer you to stay at the awesome TradeWinds Island Resort so you can be around for chats and chance meetups, but there is a KOA about 20 minutes away that is available.  Please contact us at info@uninthesun.com if you are interested in this option, and we will put you in touch with our local RV families.

I would like a t-shirt to commemorate this awesome conference. Can I get one? Or ten?

Of course! Details and ordering information will be available closer to the conference.

How much is registration?  How can I get the best deal?

The earlier you register, the better value you receive!  Here is the pricing schedule for registration:

Super Early Bird

Now – Apr 20

Early Bird

Apr 21 – Jul 31


Aug 1 – Sep 21

Late Registration

Sep 21 – Oct 4

Adult (16 +)





Child (3 – 15)










Children Under 3





Family Maximum





*Registration At The Door Add 10%

*Returned Check Fee: $35

Can I just wait to register the day of the conference?

Only if there are spots available.  We think this conference is an incredible value from the resort to the speakers, so it is quite possible that this will be a sold out event.  so we recommend registering as soon as possible for your family.

Who is on the planning team, and how can I get in touch with you?

The Un In the Sun Conference Planning Team!  Kim Polce, Sandi Lefebvre, Susan Williams, Elizabeth Mahaney, and Holly Gall.  You can reach us via email at info@uninthesun.com.  Or ask questions on the Facebook Group.

Have all of the speakers been chosen?

We have a great group of speakers lined up for our Un In the Sun Conference, but we are always looking for more incredible individuals to add to our lineup. Please contact us at info@uninthesun.com.

What is included in my Conference fee?

Your registration will include all Presentations, Sunshops, meet ups, and goodie bags, badges, and the like. It does not cover your hotel room or food or travel costs or child care.

Is the conference fee refundable?

No. Sorry!. When you register, we plan for you to be at this awesome event and that means we start paying for things (like flights for speakers, conference space, etc) to make it happen. Once you’ve committed to us, we are committed to you.

Where’s the nearest airport/what are my transportation options to the hotel?

If you’re flying in from out of town, there are two airports very close by – Tampa International Airport and St. Pete Clearwater Airport.  Tampa is served by all the large carriers, and St. Pete is served primarily by Allegiant a great discount airline that flies to many smaller markets across the country.  From there, you can either rent a car for your stay, take a hotel shuttle (available for a fee), or take a cab to the hotel.

Last year a few people took the train into Tampa and then took shuttles or cabs from there to the conference hotel.  Greyhound Bus also stops nearby.

Is there wifi?

But of course.  The wifi at the hotel is great and included.

What are our options for food?

So many choices!  The hotel has 13 different dining options from Pizza Hut and Beef O’Brady’s to fine dining.  In the local area there are many more restaurants.  Each hotel room has a mini fridge and microwave, and there is a Publix grocery store only half a mile down the road.  So you have that choice as well.

What about Gluten-Free Options?  

Gluten-free menu options are available at all TradeWinds dining outlets, and special diets can be accommodated. There is even a kid-friendly snack amenity which can be made with gluten-free products.

What will be at the Raffle & Silent Auction and how can I donate an item?

The silent auction and raffle is a way for us to raise funds for the conference.   Kids and adults of all ages will be bidding or depositing raffle tickets for donated goods such as toys, handcrafted items, homemade yummies, gift baskets, stuffed animals,  music, on-line services, and so much more.  If you have items you’d like donate, please bring them to the conference or give them to us at any time between now and then.

What is the Pirate Treasure Trading Table?

At Un In the Sun, kids can trade a raffle ticket for a prize at the Pirate Treasure Trading Table.  The table will be filled with prizes like small toys, bead necklaces, stickers & tattoos, little art kits, bubbles, art supplies, and lots of other little goodies.   We will gladly accept your donations for pirate treasure, so start collecting that booty!

 What else is there to do near St Pete Beach?

So much to do, see, and explore! Visit this page for lots of info on the area!

Hmmm… I’ve reached the end and you haven’t answered my question.

Please ask us on Facebook or send us a message at info@uninthesun.com.  We will do our very best to answer you!