Five years ago Lenore Skenazy and her partner decided their nine-year-old son was ready to take the New York City subway home alone.

She gave him $20, a map and a bunch of quarters to call home. Her son returned home all in one piece and so enjoyed the experience, that he wrote about it in class the next week.

That's when the firestorm began. The media dubbed Skenazy 'America's Worst Mom'.

Since then, the New York journalist has gone on to write 'Free Range Kids: How to Raise Safe, Self-Reliant Children (Without Going Nuts With Worry)'.

Her book takes aim at the practice of 'helicopter parenting' where parents pay extreme attention to their child's every action.

Skenazy believes parents need to stop thinking about the worst-case scenario in regards to their kids.

She thinks giving freedom and independence to children will boost their self-confidence.

B.C. Almanac live chat

Skenazy is in town this week for the Vancouver Children's Festival. She gave a talk last night at the festival's new PEP Talk series.

The champion of "free range parenting" joined us for a live chat.

Click below to see a replay of the chat.