Raising Children in Community

5-Week Online Course

Explore the joys and challenges of raising children in community, the co-parenting and education options, and how to create a more child-friendly community in the Raising Children in Community course.

Course fee: $99-$249 USD

On this page:

Watch the Introduction to Raising Children in Community panel to meet the instructors and get a peek into the course

Course description and syllabus

Raising children in a community isn’t a one-size-fits-all endeavor. We all have different ideas and styles for how we wish our children to flourish. With so many different ideas on the table, it can be difficult to come together on agreements. Fortunately, you are not alone in navigating this terrain.

It takes a village to raise our children – but how do we achieve this without becoming mired in conflict and confusion? We want to be sure we are creating a safe and inclusive space not only for the children, but for all members, which is vital to the health and growth of the community as a whole. Knowing where to start and having the right conversations can be the most difficult part of coming to an agreement on parenting styles, education paths, and how to make a community more child-friendly.

Course leaders Amy Saloner, Jessica Plancich Shinners, and Janne Campbell will take you on a journey to discovering the delights and challenges of raising children and community. In the Raising Children in Community course, you will learn how to share the balance of raising children and how to maintain an atmosphere of joy, respect, and connection with one another while doing it.

Live classes are hosted on Zoom. All classes are recorded and available on our learning platform within 24 hours after each class ends and through 30 days after the last class. 

Classes and topics in the Raising Children in Community syllabus include:

1st Class: Intentional Community for Families: What it is, isn’t and can be

[led by Amy Saloner]

  • Different types of communities
  • What community isn’t
  • What community can be for your family

2nd Class: The Joys and Challenges of Children in Community

[led by Amy Saloner and Jessica Plancich-Shinners]

  • Personal narratives and raising children collaboratively
  • Joys vs. Challenges
  • Revising expectations

3rd Class:Co-Parenting in Community

[led by Jessica Plancich-Shinners]

  • Parenting styles and family dynamics
  • Tools for finding parental intersectionality
  • Resolving co-parenting conflict

4th Class: Options for Educating Children in Community

[led by Janne Campbell]

  • Considerations for educating children in community
  • Community private school vs Private or Co-op homeschooling/unschooling vs Microschools or ALCs
  • Planning for a spectrum of learning needs

5th Class: Planning for Children in Community

[led by Janne Campbell]

  • Are we ready to welcome children?
  • Safety, comfort and addressing harm
  • Intersectionality of cultural nuances, community values and agreements
  • Welcoming children with higher support needs

Course schedule

  • TBD

Your instructors

Amy Saloner, Raising Children in Community course instructor

Amy Saloner

Amy is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner. She has worked for the last thirty years with children and families as a therapist, parent and teen coach, educator, birth advocate and community builder. Amy has worked in non-profit and for-profit organizations as well as as an entrepreneur. She and her husband co-founded The Emerald Village Intentional Community in North County San Diego with four other families twelve years ago. She is the mother to three adolescents, ages 23, 16 and 13. Amy is currently working at the intersection of mental health, nutrition and community building for teens and their families, specializing in optimal health, relationships and rites of passage into young adulthood.

Jessica Plancich Shinners, Raising Children in Community course instructor

Jessica Plancich Shinners

With a Master’s in clinical psychology, a doctorate in Organizational Leadership (Ed.D. Pepperdine University), and 20-year psychotherapy practice as a marriage and family therapist, Jessica applies a whole human approach to consulting that nurtures body, mind, and spirit so the wisdom of the heart can be awakened. After years of witnessing the limitations of Western psychology, she sought training in Eastern approaches to healing and wellness. With certifications as a yoga and qi gong instructor and massage therapist, Jessica utilizes a holistic and somatic approach to her work as a communitarian and social architect. As a co-founder of the Emerald Village, she and her husband birthed and raised their 7 year-old daughter in a community context. They have since moved to Southern Oregon to begin another large land based, community endeavor.

Janne Campbell, Raising Children in Community course instructor

Janne Campbell

Janne is passionate about creating a world that works for all, including children. As a unschooling mother of two, devoted student of conscious parenting and nonviolent communication, she serves the Great Turning by sharing what she knows about raising children in joy, respect and connection. She is particularly drawn to supporting inquiry around the delicate ecosystem of family and children within the context of intentional community. When she isn’t making snacks and holding space for big feelings, she’s fermenting, baking, cobbing, foraging, growing or skinning something and trying to start a (un)school. Janne is the founder of the Village Child Project where she consults with communities and other organizations who wish to support the liberation of children within the container of community.


“I fortuitously found my way to Jessica over half a decade ago, and she has been a steady, true, trustworthy confidant since our first encounter. Each time we meet I find myself overflowing with nuggets of insight and wisdom that always integrate into my day-to-day life. What I appreciate most about Jessica is her commitment to honesty – she has an uncanny ability to encourage you to see not only the hard truths within yourself, but of those you choose to surround yourself with.”

-Mandie Shaner

“Amy is an experienced educator with a wealth of knowledge in so many areas. She listens attentively to students, uses a variety of innovated learning and teaching styles, and guides them from teh curricula with clear and articulated instruction. Amy has a way of teaching which motivates students to believe in themselves and make changes in their lives.”

-Dr. Ilana DeLaney

The elements of an online course

Online learning platform

Once you register, you’ll get access to our learning area that includes:

  • class slides and other course materials
  • class video recordings, audio files, and transcripts for learning on the go
  • recommended books with access to course participant discount
  • a dedicated discussion forum to connect with your classmates

Live interactive sessions

Each week you join a 2-hour live class with the course instructor, where you learn in a group setting with:

  • interactive presentations
  • break out sessions
  • group discussions
  • the opportunity for questions and answers, and personalized support

Classes are recorded if you miss one.

Journey with a cohort

You’ll join participants from around the world how, like you, want to learn how to be better communitarians. Benefits include:

  • opportunities to connect with like-minded people
  • opportunities to share ideas and stories
  • a network of support to carry your community project forward

Join the wait list

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