Untold Santa Cruz

5. Erika Leonard: On parenting and homeschooling through a crisis.

May 18, 2020

If you are a new listener to Untold Santa Cruz, I would love to hear from you, do you know someone with a story that simply ought to be told? Please email me and let me know who I should meet!

Music for the Podcast was graciously created and offered by the talented Ketsa and was obtained at the Fee Music Archive . Please visit the artist's webpage for more info!

In this episode of Untold Santa Cruz: Shelter In Peace Erika Leonard and I talk about:


  •  2:45 Meeting and knowing your “actual" child.
  •  7:55 The Liberation of giving up cherished beliefs.
  •  10:10 Homeschooling vs “doing school” at home.
  •  10:40 As many ways to homeschool as there are homeschool families.
  •  11:20 The power of agency and choice.
  •  12:20 The power and liberation of low standards.
  •  17:15 Having personal rules can guide us through tough times.
  •  18:20 Facing challenges head-on.
  •  20:30 How to progress when there is no map for what you are doing.
  •  21:55 Expectations get in the way of reality.
  •  23:55 It's easier to keep authenticity alive than to rebuild it once it is lost.
  •  24:55 Praise, gender dynamics, and other things that can stifle authenticity.
  • 27:40 When mental health and the ability to read by the age of 18 became the gold standard
  • 31:00 “The world" found her child “difficult”.
  • 32:50 Be present with what is so, the actual world, what is actually happening.
  • 35:20 Nobody ever called me fun.
  • 36:55 The space to explore one's values.
  •  40:00 The history of human experience has been hard.
  •  40:10 Isolation vs. ISOLATION: Anne Frank a perspective.
  • 41:10 The freedom of no cohort. 
  • 43:10 Always the mother's fault.
  • 43:40 I did everything right and my life still fell apart.
  • 47:40 Behind in school does not have to mean behind in learning.
  •  48:10 Does this disruption stimulate growth?
  •  48:55 Kids are learning about this and us. What are we teaching them with who we are being in this crisis?
  •  51:00 What does this crisis say about how we are treating animals
  •  52:10 I'm accountable to my child as a 35-year-old adult.
  •  55:55 Am I qualified?
  •  57:20 A rubric for decision making.
  •  58:55 I'm not my child's friend or playmate, I'm a mom.
  •  60:00Social media is just another “place”.In every place there exists both good, and bad intent.
  • 64:10 A conversation about social media and teens. 
  • 65:00 What is the pathway to yes? It's not an age, or a date.
  • 65:15 Find the expert on the place, ask them to tell you all the ways people mess with each other there.
  •  65:40 “Common Sense” newsletter as a resource.
  •  69:40 The power of having a conversation versus “spying”.
  •  82:40 The perspective of a digital footprint.
  •  74:40 Being interested in your children's stuff doesn't mean you like it.
  •  75:40 Tell kids the truth, it does not have to be in the whole truth.
  •  “I'm so glad... “   a simple script to set boundaries powerfully yet gently while fostering connection.
  •  76:40 Talking about sex, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
  •  78:25 Team parenting
  •  79:40 Kidpower resources for talking to children about current events.
  •  80:55 How to talk to children about scary things they have already heard. 
  •  84:10 Gratitude + Perspective + Joy = Presence

Follow the Guest


Erika Leonard has worked with KIDPOWER since 1985, first as a volunteer/advisor, then as an instructor, a program coordinator, and now as the Assistant Director of Community Education. She has recently taken on the role of expanding the social media presence of the non-profit organization. 

Her skills, talents, and responsibilities include:

* Leading success-based People Safety skills workshops tailored to the specific needs of people of all ages and abilities.

* Presenting to small groups as well as to very large groups in business, academic, and conference environments.

* Communicating program skills and concepts via articles, large and small group presentations, and podcasts

* Fundraising/resource development

* Training and supervision of new instructors

Specialties: * Adaptation of People Safety skills training for children, teens, and adults

* Adaptation to address special needs including developmental disability, visual impairment, hearing impairment, autism/Asperger's, and special needs affecting mobility

* Adaptation for professionals in workplace settings, providing tailored practice of People Safety skills relevant to specific work environments.

* Public speaking, presenting compelling presentations for audiences of any size 


Follow the Podcast

Follow our Host

Podbean App

Play this podcast on Podbean App