Commune Dads Episode 6 – The Blessings and Curses of Grandparents

Keegan Dunn and adder Oaks ponder the pros and cons of having their kids’ grandparents in their lives. Grandparents are often sources of unconditional love and care, not to mention sugar and TV. Do grandparents create openings for our kids to become obsessed Disney consumers or beat-em-up superhero devotees? How can one deal with influence of commercial media generally? Also, a look at the BBC Dad viral video, for which our hosts are joined by special guest, fellow communard, loving partner, and co-parent Megan Lebda.

This episode is sponsored by Twin Oaks Hammocks, the community-owned business creating handcrafted outdoor luxury furniture. Visit and use coupon code DADS for 10% off your entire order.


Children interrupt BBC News interview (BBC Dad video)
Woman interrupted during BBC interview (parody)

Outfoxed (board game)

Potion Explosion (board game)

Lingua Latina (Latin language textbook)

Opening music: Commune Dads Theme – Nick Paoletti
Closing music: Nowhere Land – Kevin Macleod

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Commune Dads Episode 5 – Teenage Communards with Evan Houston and Rowan Dakota

Guest commune adolescents Rowan and Evan join adder and Keegan for this lighthearted discussion about the lives of teenagers on a commune and what comes next. They share the unique educational opportunities presented to them, such as classes on pyrotechnics, sign language, and and film studies. In addition, Rowan and Evan point to gaps in their experience living outside the mainstream and there plans to round out their academic and cultural education.


Evan’s Instagram, featuring short videos:

Homeschool Film Ed, Christian’s blog:

Moonwalking with Einstein: The Art and Science of Remembering Everything

The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home

Avatar: The Last Airbender

Bringing Up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting

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Commune Dads Episode 4 – Will Kids Ever Learn to Share?

We live in a community that is based on sharing, yet struggle just as much as any other parents to instill the value of sharing on children. Are the sharing habits of commune kids actually any different than those of the mainstream? Effectively encouraging sharing  appears to be an as yet unsolved problem. Mandating children’s sharing seems to miss the point: kids don’t seem to become empathetic sharers by having their toys passed on to others by force. But a lassiez-faire approach will often leave children stuck in selfish habits. just as well. Does the commune life help create an example of sharing, or does so much shared actually work in the opposite direction, encouraging children (and adults) to claim out whatever personal domain they can. Keegan and myself, adder Oaks, explore these questions and more on this episode of Commune Dads.


Preschoolers’ Selfish Sharing Is Reduced by Prior Experience With Proportional Generosity (academic article)

The Dispossessed (novel)

It’s OK Not to Share and Other Renegade Rules for Raising Competent and Compassionate Kids (book)

Revolutionary OS (documentary)

The Man Who Walked Between the Towers (picture book)

Memorize the Faith! (and Most Anything Else): Using the Methods of the Great Catholic Medieval Memory Masters (book)

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Commune Dads Episode 3 – Tech, Kids, and Moderation

Keegan and adder take on tech. Both share their interest in teaching children to understand and program computers, but express fear at the way computers and smartphones can have power over people. Keegan shares his childhood memories as the first personal computers made it into homes and his lifelong obsession with computers that he has spent his adult years fighting off. Can children on the commune avoid a similar fate? Adder expresses his nostalgia for video games and shares his plan to teach a 5-year-old text-based computing. Both try to make sense of the ubiquity of smartphones in the lives of today’s children.

Everything Bad is Good for You

In the Beginning… was the Command Line

K12 Online Education

Anki – Powerful, Intelligent Flash Cards

Opening Music: Commune Dads Theme – Nick Paoletti
Closing Music: Happy Rock –

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Commune Dads Podcast Episode 2 – Peers and Personality

Adder and Keegan examine the personalities of children and the effects their peers have on them. They ponder the sibling-like relationships of commune kids, consider that parents might have less of an effect than they might think, and reflect on the effects of schooling and video games in their childhoods.

Book/Article Mentions:

I’m really looking forward to our next episode on tech in the lives of children. Keegan is a bit of a luddite. While I have my tech concerns, I also have perhaps a little bit too much nostalgia for the hours spent playing video games as a child. Can video games be good for kids, or is the addictive nature of them too great?
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Commune Dads Podcast Episode 1 – Why Raise Kids on a Commune?

I would like to introduce a brand new podcast hosted by myself (adder) and Keegan. It’s called Commune Dads and is a a discussion-driven podcast about the challenges and joys of parenting on a commune, in our case at Twin Oaks . We share our individual parenting and education values, as well as anecdotes about many of the commune kids.

I got excited about the idea of doing a parenting podcast pretty soon after my son was born, who is now eleven months old. I love to listen to podcasts, audiobooks, and lecture series when I work, and this didn’t change when my main work area became parenting. When he was brand new, he would (naturally) sleep for the majority of the day. But the best way to keep him asleep was to wear him on my back and bounce him around for the entire duration of his sleep. This is still his preferred form of nap.

Naturally, I listened to podcasts during his naps. I was turned on to some pretty good ones (my favorite is probably Slate’s Mom and Dad Are Fighting). At the same time, my best friend here, Keegan, was looking forward to the birth of his child, about six months after mine. Keegan and I regularly have long, productive, funny, emotional, supportive, enjoyable conversations — why not record them? I pitched him the idea and he was all for it. Though it took some time before we got around to it, once both of us had babies whose schedules started to settle, we could plan and record this show. I am glad we have. At its heart, I think this podcast is a way to ensure that, despite our changing and busy lives, my best friend and I still make time for each other.

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Commune Baby Transport


Commune baby transport plus the ctyd ginkgo in full fall glory, photo by Megan


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