"In 1974 John Holt wrote Escape from Childhood, The Needs and Rights of Children. It’s a radical book, as almost all social reform books of the seventies were. It still looks radical to parents and educators today. But his points, in that book, that children are overly controlled, and grossly underestimated, are just as valid today. If you’re bravely wading into the mysterious pool of unschooling and haven’t read that book, it might get you thinking about children and what they can do and what they ought to be able to try, with your experienced help and guidance.”—Deb Lewis.

Escape From Childhood: The Needs and Rights of Children

Holt's eloquent, insightful, and highly controversial book about how we can gradually let children decide what constitutional rights they wish to exercise in their lives, such as the right to think and learn about topics they are interested in, choosing their own guardians, and voting.

Since this book tends to make people upset or energized (there appears to be no middle ground among its readers), I'm linking to two of my blog posts that provide excerpts from the book and some reviews to give you a flavor of what you will encounter when you read it from cover to cover.

I've added a podcast by Pam Larichia and Emma Marie Forde from Nov. 2017 that explores Escape From Childhood in detail.

The New York TImes:
"Astonishingly cogent. John Holt's book is touching in its beautiful respect for children and its insistence on their dignity."

Emma Marie Forde is unschooling mom to two girls, Lily and Rosa. She's also the founder of the website, rethinkingparenting.co.uk. Before having children, Emma was a clinical psychologist, a career that informed her choice to stay home with her own children and to choose unschooling.