The Story of
Follow Your Heart:
the school for multipotentialites
With a frustrated heart, Valentina Russo (co-author and illustrator) had the original idea to create a learning space that fosters multiple talents, creativity and emotional intelligence. Collaborating with Margherita Paola Poto (research professor and coordinator of ECO_CARE) and Emily Margaret Murray (global health researcher and team member of ECO_CARE), the original book idea blossomed into a co-created 3-part resource targeting multipotential children, educators, and researchers. Follow Your Heart is built upon evidence-based research supporting the importance of carving out more space within traditional school curricula for creativity, imagination, mindfulness, outdoor learning,
emotions, and exploring multiple interests and talents. Moreover, a core theme of this project, portrayed through the character of Cora and the illustrated children's book embedded within the resource, is to move away from the question "what do you want to be when you grow up?". We believe that this question limits imagination and urges children to choose a linear career path prematurely without taking time to really understand themselves and what makes their hearts happy. Starting with a series of workshops for parents, educators and children in the UK, Italy and France, the authors hope to bring this resource to private and public school settings and spark a shift towards more emotional- and ecological-based education.
It Takes a Community.
The Follow Your Heart team is very thankful to the sponsoring institutions that have supported the publication of the book, the book launch-workshop series that has visited the UK, Italy & France, and the dissemination of its research.
As Follow Your Heart: the school for multipotentialites was published as an open-access resource, the profit from book sales through the book launch & workshop series have been donated to local initiatives.