Podcast Episode #29 – Teen Talk + Peru Review

Podcast Episode #29 – Teen Talk + Peru Review
March 16, 2012 Lainie Liberti

The best vitamin for making friends: B1

Meet an amazing unschooled 12 year old. Other than Miro.

Episode #29 Miro speaks with Devin Martin, an unschooled pre-teen, who surprisingly, shares many of the same interests

“I am always ready to learn, but I do not always like being taught.”
~Winston Churchill

In today’s podcast you will hear an interview between two 12 year old unschooled boys, Miro & Devin Martin. Unshcooling has always been a part of Devin’s experience. He has been encouraged to follow his interests and peruse his hobbies. We learn about  Devin’s interest in “Steam Punk” and  we discover his passion for  hand-made projects. Devin currently lives with his family in the United States.

We suppose it’s  no coincidence that Devin’s mother Dayna Martin wrote a popular book on unschooling called Radical Unschooling – A Revolution Has Begun.  (See more about Dayna Martin at the end of this page.)


“We socialize. It’s fun. Socialization, on the other hand, that’s where someone trains you how to behave in an institutional setting. Not fun.” ~ Sara McGrath

As a Mom, I am just now beginning to understand why. Unschoolers are a different breed. Unschoolers are empowered to follow their own passions and interests. But first, they are encouraged to discover them. That’s a huge difference between traditional schooled kids & unschoolers.  Tradional schoolers are required to focus on subject matter spoon fed to them by the school based on their biological age.


“How will you child be socialized if he’s not in school?”

…if I had a nickel…  

But for those most commonly asking those questions, I ask you to consider:

Wikipedia on socialization & the unschooler:

Concerns about socialization are often a factor in the decision to unschool. Many unschoolers believe that the conditions common in conventional schools, like age segregation, a low ratio of adults to children, a lack of contact with the community, and a lack of people in professions other than teachers or school administration create an unhealthy social environment. They feel that their children benefit from coming in contact with people of diverse ages and backgrounds in a variety of contexts. They also feel that their children benefit from having some ability to influence what people they encounter, and in what contexts they encounter them. Unschoolers cite studies which report that home educated students tend to be more mature than their schooled peers,and some believe this is a result of the wide range of people with which they have the opportunity to communicate.

Miro as a volunteer in Ecuador, leading children in a creative theater exercise

…just wait until you hear these two boys converse. I am not an expert, but I suspect in general, unschooled kids are indeed simply socialized better within the world, not just their particular school grade class.  And being present with many social situations  is definitely a valuable skill.

It seems to me, that unschooled kids are simply more aware of their own presence. They are aware that they belong in this world and are proud to contribute.

But what about Schooled Adults?

Many adults are dismissive of children and have the general sense that kids have nothing of worthwhile to say.

…in Miro’s own words:

“Equally annoying, one of my biggest pet peeves is when adults talk down to me, treat me like I’m a ‘child’, incapable of having an intelligent thought on my own. I don’t like it when people think I’m stupid just because I’m a kid, like when taxi drivers won’t talk to me or people in restaurants wait for my mom’s approval before writing down my order. It felt really great to talk to someone so similar to me. It had been so long since I had had an interaction with another child I liked. The previous encounters I’ve had with other kids did not end well, and I was starting to believe they were all the same. However my interview with Devin has restored my faith in children.” ~Miro

(If you haven’t read Miro’s first hand experience about being bullied Mancora, read the article here.)

Other Raising Miro Unschooling Podcasts

We have talked about unschooling in several other podcasts:

Episode #16

Podcast Episode #16 – Unschooling, Discovering No Differences Between Living & Learning, I interviewed another traveling single mom. Theodora was traveling together with her son throughout Asia and provided her candor as we recoded our conversation, a frank talk between two moms, We broach the subjects, everything from education, to travel and even sex. If you haven’t heard that podcast, please follow the show links page on our web site at raisingmiro.com

Then later on that year, we produced a 3 part series called A World of Learning.

Episode #22

Podcast Episode #22 – Unschooling- A World of Learning Part 1 -features an interview with Peter Kowalke, a 32-year-old homeschooler, journalist, film director and editor of Unschooler.com. He shares his experience as an unschooled child from his now point of view as an adult.

Episode #23

Podcast Episode #23 – Unschooling- A World of Learning Part 2, we featured an interview with an unschooling mom of two little boys from Canada. She talked about the laws within her country and working with the Minister of Education to actually get paid to unschool her boys.

Episode #24

Podcast Episode #23 – Unschooling- A World of Learning Part 3 I interview Eli Gerzon, an unschooled adult who decided to direct his own education at the age of 15. Eli, an advocate for homeschooling, has replaced the traditional classroom with the world as experienced through his travels and has coined the phrase “worldschooling”.


There are so many wonderful places on the planet, but we believe Peru is truly fascinating and unique. This country has an abundance of natural and cultural treasures that continues to intrigue visitors for hundreds of years. This is a land of rich cultural heritage. Although we’ve only been here a short seven months (yes, that’s a short time for immersing yourself into the culture) we’ve explored just a fraction of the notable sites and cities. There are large modern cities, small rural towns, beach resorts, jungle villages, mountain communities, deserts and everything in between.


“Most people, most of the time, learn most of what they know about science and technology outside of school.” -National Science Foundation

On our blog, we have shared with you posts about many of the places we’ve traveled and lived at including the infamous beach town of Mancora, Huanchaco, Trujillo, Chiclayo, Huaraz, Nasca and Paracas.

For us, the most fascinating part of exploring this beautiful country has been all that we’ve learned about the ancient cultures and traditions. Through my passion, Miro is exposed and is discovering things he’s never dreamed about. When I thought of Peru prior to visiting, all I knew was this is land of the Incas. Never in my wildest dreams was I prepared for all the experiences that were in store.


We’ve learned about so many cultures here, including the Moche, Chimu, Wari, Lambayaque, Paracas, Nasca and Chavin. Some of these cultures date back 3000 to 4000 years ago. To think that these advanced cultures lived here 3 to 4,000 years is ago pretty mind-blowing!

We have seen the ruins of very sophisticated communities. Architecture of a precise nature, walls constructed out of solid stone, so perfectly cut that you cannot fit a hair between the two adjoining bricks.

Miro considering the Moche culture at the Temple of the Sun & the Moon

We have seen the remains of the largest pyramid complex in world. Yes, even larger than in Egypt. Can you imagine an ancient land where 26 important pyramids were built, along with enclosures and ceremonial mounds across a 540 acre sprawl? We can, we’ve seen it and these pyramids date back to 1000 AD. Astounding.

Nasca Lines
We’ve experienced the massive geoglyphs, pictures drawn across the sandy desert, images so expertly drawn at an unbelievable scale. So large these earth drawings are only viewable from an airplane or observation tower. These images of animals grace the desert floor and what’s thought to be ancient landing strips for aircraft make up what’s known as the Nasca lines.

Mummy of Cao
Then we saw a tattooed female mummy who, like the Egyptians, was buried in a tomb found deep within an ancient pyramid, just off the northern pacific coast. I was even able to see the fascinating tattoos, which still grace her beautiful mummified body after roughly1300 years. Hope my mom’s looks that good in a millenium.

Elongated Skulls
We even saw what looks like to be evidence of aliens, when we visited The Paracas History Museum. We were honored to be able to speak with the brilliant Brien Forester, author, expert and a contributing curator of the largest private collection of elongated skulls. He shared with us the history of the Paracas culture, then proceeded to show a comparison between several elongated skulls, some believed to alien of nature, other believed to be human or human / alien hybrids.

We even have an article about that trip at our site, including a short video clip we took of Brien showcasing the non-human attributes of some of the skulls.

And the world shall remain our classroom…

I believe this is a true example of ‘learning’ through experiencing the world. Learning new things has become the gift both Miro and I share as we’ve both learned to experience the world with a sense of openness and amazement.

About Dayna Martin

Dayna Martin has been at the forefront of the unschooling movement for the past decade. Author of, Radical Unschooling: A Revolution Has Begun, she’s been featured on Dr. Phil, CNN, Nightline, and Fox News several times. She was even used as an informational resource for Unschooling stories on the Discovery Channel, The Today Show and Our America on the OWN Network. She travels the world as the UnNanny, and is a featured speaker at the major unschooling conferences worldwide.

As an unschooling parent, author, and advocate, Dayna has been featured and interviewed in hundreds of local, regional, and international television and radio pieces about Radical Unschooling over the last several years. She and her husband Joe appeared as the featured guests on Dr. Phil Show in November 2006 introducing Radical Unschooling to the world.

Supporting Raising Miro

If you are able to support us financially we would be so grateful.  We continue to raise money to keep us safe, and keep us out on the road. I continue to work a little remotely and we have started to earn a little income from our web site, but if you can support us with a donation, no matter the size, we’d be so grateful. Without you, we wouldn’t be able to continue our travels. We live frugally, stay with families & couch surf and  volunteer our time and energies. We  know this is  all part of our experience in the world and are grateful for each and every moment.

We want you to know, your donations go such a long way helping keeping us in the present, safe and knowing we have exactly what we need. Thank you to all who have supported us through your donations in the past and those who will in the future and believing in our travels.

If you are interested in learning more about ways to support Raising Miro, including donating money or sponsoring our travels please click on this link. If you are interested in finding out about advertising opportunities for our podcasts or website, please on the site, please send a note here or use the donation form in the sidebar.


Thank you!

We want to take a moment to thank a few peoplewho have contributed to our travels. Your donations have helped cover our travel expenses and for that, we are so grateful! The people who have contributed to Raising Miro are: Ashley Hansen, Grandpa, Scott Van Pelt, Sashya Amee, Ivan Amador,Heather on Her Travels, Bradford Akerman, Tuan Vutran, Terrance O’Dowd, Eric Hammond, Chip Jacobs, Billy Horn and Sonia Kim. Thank you so much! Your support is heart-felt and much appreciated!


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Special Thanks

To those of you who have supported us so far on this journey, the donations we’ve received and the wonderful words of encouragement. Thank you all for your comments and feedback, and please keep them coming. Thank you Hanna for giving us a wonderful professional boost with the intro & outro, engineered by Hanna Jakobson, music “Multilayered Timbres” by Dr. Pimp courtesy of CC (creative commons) license.


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