This conference was a great success! Thank you to all who attended, volunteered and presented. We specifically want to thank our volunteers:

David Gagnon for volunteering endless hours and staying up into the wee hours of the morning helping us prepare our logo, fliers and more. Your generosity continues to touch us. Thank you David.

Sandra VanEssen and Laurie Kaltio for volunteering at the registration table. Thank you for being the first smiling faces our guests met upon arrival.

Debbie, the Youth Centres Coordinator from the John Braithwaite Community Centre and Tricia, from the North Shore Neighbourhood House and the amazing young people from the John Braithworthe Community Centre Youth Leadership Program: Amir Akhavan-Rezaei, Amir Hossein Ghateleh Bashi, Scott Strome, and Irene HuangDonya Pakravan for supervising the Children’s Corner and providing a warm and engaging area for the children who attended. Because you were so great with the kids, their parents were able to fully participate in the conference. Thank you for volunteering your time.

Panny, Claudia and Carolyn for helping us out in so many ways. Thank you for your energy!

Finally, to Kristina, Cameron, Nicholas and Emily Meyer for spending the whole day supporting us in many ways including carrying all of our materials to and from the cars, setting up and working the electronic devices and making the room look wonderful. Your support means a lot to us. Thank you.

Just announced: The next Joy of Learning Conference will be on Saturday, October 2nd, 2010. Hope to see you there.


School takes up approximately 13,000 hours of our children’s lives yet for many children the experience of school is frustrating, confusing and unsuccessful. The intrinsic joy of learning dies and is replaced by anxiety, competition and coercion.

The purpose of this conference is to provide practical and supportive information to parents and children to help them recapture the joy of learning. It is also an opportunity for parents to discover how to reignite the joy of learning in their children and empower their learning success.

This event will introduce parents and children to:

• The range of learning styles that people have.

• Resources to help you understand your child’s unique learning needs;

• Techniques to support your child’s learning success in any environment;

• Educational options available in the Lower Mainland including homeschooling, democratic education, alternative education and the programs of choice.

• The range of learning support resources in the Vancouver area.

There will be several speakers at this event representing local expertise in learning, child development and learning styles. Guest speakers at this event are:

cameo-pamPamela Proctor is the author of “Honouring the Child: Changing Ways of Teaching” and cofounder of the active child-centered learning program at Charles Dickens Annex. Pamela is a graduate of the Faculty of Education at UBC and taught in the Vancouver Public School System for 35 years. For more information visit Pamela’s website,

cameo-kathleenKathleen Forsythe, one of the world’s first ‘knowledge architects’, has been instrumental in introducing the concept of open learning to North America over the past twenty-five years. Kathleen is currently the Principal of Wondertree Learning Centre in Vancouver. You can learn more about Kathleen at

cameo-mauriceMaurice Gibbons, a specialist in the creation of innovative approaches to instruction, has designed learning programs that emphasize self-direction, challenge and excellence. Among his more than sixty academic articles, the most celebrated are “Walkabout, Searching for the Right Passage from Childhood and School” (PDK, May 74), and the follow-up article, “Walkabout Ten Years Later” (PDK, May 1984). Gibbons is well known for the provocative speeches and hands-on workshops he presents worldwide. His website is

Children are welcome and encouraged to attend. There will be a special Children’s Corner with activities to keep them engaged while you enjoy the speakers and workshops.


Saturday, May 23rd, 2009 9:30 am to 3 pm,

SFU Harbour Centre, Rm 1400, 515 West Hastings Street, Vancouver

For more information or to pre-register for this free event, please contact us at


  1. Dave Nordstrom said,

    April 20, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    Hurrah! Hurrah! Greetings to Kathleen, Pamela, and all other enlightened learning enthusiasts! At our Sundance reunion two years ago, there was a common lament for shrinking alternatives, especially painful to me because of my involvement with cooperative preschools, creative learning options, Understanding Your Child’s Development (through Capital Families Association), New Parent Discussion Groups, and Business of Fathering workshops, none of which have continued. Now in retreat in Salmon Arm, I would be delighted to network with any Okanagan/Shuswap participants. Wish I could be there!

  2. April 21, 2009 at 8:09 am

    Sounds fantastic, there is a small group of parents pursueing a pre-teen program which includes self design learning, mentoring and social events.
    I will be in the Vanc. region, and I hope to stay longer to attend.
    Nice work to you all.

  3. May 17, 2009 at 4:30 pm

    Hi Tina-Marie!
    Thank you so much for the warm invitation to attend. I so wish I could be there, but I have a workshop in Portland, Oregon I’m putting on. Best of luck!

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