Welcome to The Educating Parent Beverley Paine's archive of articles about homeschooling and unschooling written over a period of 30 plus years

HomeAboutAdvertiseArticles Curriculum Resource DirectoryShopKids PagesFacebook

Download our FREE The Educating Parent Resource Directories today!

Free download a quick guide to getting started with homeschooling and unschooling by Beverley Paine The Educating Parent in this excellent Resource Directory
Introduction to
Home Education

Free download Beverley's huge list of books about homeschooling and unschooling in her special edition of The Educating Parent Resource Directory
BIG List of Books
about Home Ed

Download for FREE this huge collection of links to online Australian homeschool and unschool support groups in this special The Educating Parent Resource Directory by Beverley Paine
National and State
Support Groups

Help support fellow home educating families earn a living or add your business to this very popular The Educating Parent Resource Directory by Beverley Paine
Home Educating
Families in Business

Over 80 blogs by Australian homeschooling and unschooling families are listed in this FREE The Educating Parent Resource Directory by Beverley Paine, download and email to add your blog to the list today
Aussie Homeschool
and Unschool Blogs

Looking for support, reassurance and information?
Join Beverley's The Educating Parents Homeschooling and Unschooling Facebook or Yahoo online groups.

Living Simply

Beverley Paine, 2011

I can't believe humanity can't solve the serious problems we face each day... We have access to materials, labour, technology, intelligence, and imagination we need, so what's holding us up?

All too often people are overwhelmed by the enormity of the task. I've found that permaculture offers me a practical and successful path to effective change, at both the personal and community level. If enough people began to live according to permaculture ethics and principles the ripples of change would begin to make a difference globally.

Since 1986 my goal has been to live simply... This means adopting an ecologically sane lifestyle that takes responsibility for every aspect of how I live - what I eat, the building I live in, how I get around, my relationship with other people, the creatures and plants of the Earth, the planet, what I use, my health and safety and that of others.

Living simply means questioning the cultural imperatives for my actions: perhaps my cultural conditioning drives my actions, instead of a sound analysis of the intrinsic characteristics and needs of each and every situation? I need to constantly test my thoughts and actions to see if I'm using the most least energy requiring solution, or applying appropriate technology - taking the sane, logical (not necessarily linear!) route. Permaculture ethics - care for Earth, care for people, share surplus - guide me.

To live simply I find my decisions require me to examine my needs and desires. Not the superficial ones we tend to talk about, but the basic needs and wants. Those that lie beneath. It can be hard to pin them down, largely because we have covered them with so much complexity we've forgotten what they look like! Rediscovering them defines me, tells me about the person I am, and what I want and need to survive, thrive and feel fulfilled in life.

I find that by limiting the scale and intensity of my activities to those which are actually necessary always guides me to a simple life. The more I become in tune with my own needs and wants the easier it is to apply the permaculture principles to all the various elements at play in any given situation in my life. From there it is a matter of making decisions from a holistic perspective as well as giving consideration to the present and future consequences of my actions.

As part of this process I need to constantly seek and implement solutions that reduce the disturbance to the ecological balance. I've found that in many cases the solution is to do nothing. A close examination of my needs sometimes reveals that they are actually cleverly disguised wants, not at all necessary for my well-being with little permanent value. Sometimes they don't even reflect who I am, but are who I should be or on assumptions of what I think others expect from me.

Permaculture also reminds me that all tools must be matched to the task at hand. Excesses imbalance systems. Deficiencies stunt growth. Aiming for bare sufficiency produces optimal growth. This is perhaps the hardest and most enduring permaculture lesson for me to learn! At the moment I'm learning to keep my volunteering and writing endeavours small and manageable, in scale with the rest of my life. It's too easy to get carried away and suddenly find that I don't have time to relax and enjoy the wonderful environment in which I live!

I've learned to recognise that each dollar I spend is a vote for the way I want others to shape the world. We can reclaim power from corporations and corrupt governments by spending our dollars ethically and wisely - or by reducing our spending and thus our need to earn. Many times I walk away from a purchase. Sometime it is because I suddenly realise I don't need it, even if I want it; other times it is because I already have enough resources at home to create something that will work just as well. We've adopted the habit of creative recycling and using onsite materials wherever possible. In many instances this has meant changing my expectations, especially regarding comfort or longevity. I'm slowly learning not to hoard: learning how to let go, to share with others the increasing abundance I find in my life, and to let things decay, celebrate the cycles of nature, rather than work against them.

I find that if I don't make time each day to enjoy life I quickly lose the will to live simply and fall into my old consumer patterns of behaviour. Without spending time outside each day I soon forget how to live simply. My children have taught me the value of simply sitting and allowing my senses and thoughts to gently rest on a natural object or scene and daydream. When life becomes too hectic I walk upon the earth barefoot and hug a tree! That helps me attain the state of mindfulness I feel I need, and it's easy to remember to be thankful, to celebrate each and every moment, regardless of what they bring. This is a powerful way to keep my awareness on living simply.

Finally, I find it's important to do those things that I believe in and feel passionate about - this makes living meaningful and worthwhile. Making sure my actions while I am pursuing my interests promote bio-diversity and ecological balance requires constant vigilance.

Was this article helpful? Was it worth $1.00 to you? Your gift of $1 or more helps to keep this site operating offering encouragement and reassurance to families wanting better outcomes for their children.

Thank you for your gift contribution!

Beverley Paine with her children, and their home educated children, relaxing at home.

Together with the support of my family, my aim is to help parents educate their children in stress-free, nurturing environments. In addition to building and maintaing this website, I continue to create and manage local and national home educating networks, help to organise conferences and camps, as well as write for, edit and produce newsletters, resource directories and magazines. I am an active supporter of national, state, regional and local home education groups.

"You've been an inspiration to me, I love the way
you really listen to people."
Vanessa

"Whenever I read your writing I always come away
with increased confidence in my ability to provide and
share a wonderful learning journey with my family!"
Davina

"Your guidance, understanding, support and words of
wisdom changed our lives. We now offer support and
organise many homeschooling events for others."
Lesley

"Thank you once again for your prompt and friendly service.
I am convinced that your books are going to add
quality and peace of mind to my journey of teaching my kids
at home! Just from studying your website, until almost
2am in the morning, I 've been encouraged!"
Louisa

"Thank you for all your many,many reassuring words
over many, many years. You probably don't know exactly how
valuable you are to the Australian Home Education community.
I've been reading your stuff for maybe 8 years or more now.
And I'm very grateful."
Gythaa

Want to learn how to write your own education plans to suit
your unique children's individual learning needs?

Looking for quality curriculum and teaching tips ?

Over 1000 reassuring and informative articles to help
build your confidence as an Educating Parent

Welcome to the World of Home Education and
Learning without School!

We began educating our children in 1985, when our eldest was five. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn since they were born. I am a passionate advocate of allowing children to learn unhindered by unnecessary stress and competition, meeting developmental needs in ways that suit their individual learning styles and preferences. Ours was a homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning family! There are hundreds of articles on this site to help you build confidence as a home educating family. We hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was! Beverley Paine

The information on this website is of a general nature only and is not intended as personal or professional advice. This site merges and incorporates 'Homeschool Australia' and 'Unschool Australia'.

To see the full range of Beverley Paine's books on homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning visit Always Learning Books

Tap into Beverley's experience through her books

"Your books, your blogs helped me beyond words...
they helped me to find comfort in knowing it is ok to choose
exactly what is best for my family." Nisha

"Your books and information are mind blowing and already
I am feeling good about this new experience." Diane

Connect with Beverley and ask questions
through her online The Educating Parents Homeschooling and Unschooling Facebook and Yahoo support groups.

purchase Beverley's practical and common sense books on homeschooling and unschooling
"Your guidance, understanding, support & words of wisdom changed our lives." Leslie

"I feel specially inspired by Beverley's words and, the more I read her comments, the more inspired I feel, since my need for support, respect for different parenting styles, and information are fully met." Marijo

Advertise with The Educating Parent

Access all the content plus BONUSES from the Australian Homeschool Summit

Stocking all of Beverley Paine's, the educating parent's, books!

Find out more about Brain Builder by clicking here!

Link to Educate and Assist for home educating families music lessons tailored to your home educating students needs in Joondalup Perth WA the only homeschool reading development which combines neurosciencebased exercises with voice recognition technology, platypus power reading program

click to go to the Sunshine Collective providing ‘Brilliant Boxes’ to families of pre-schoolers and primary school aged children, throughout Australia

cover of Getting Started with Homeschooling by Beverley Paine DIY Getting Started with Home Schooling Pack
Beverley Paine's best selling comprehensive common sense manual detailing how to write your own curriculum tailored to your children's educational needs
PLUS 9 of Beverley's popular practical home educating series booklets!
Great value $60
Natural Learning
and Unschooling Pack

Each Pack contains a copy of the following:
Natural Learning
Natural Learning Answers
A5 or A4
Learning Naturally Diary
Learning Maths Naturally
A Sample Approved Natural Learning Program and Review

Only $29 or $33
Select A4 or A5 Diary

Home education is a legal alternative
to school education in Australia.
State and Territory governments are responsible
for regulating home education and have different
requirements, however home educating families
are able to develop curriculum and learning programs
to suit the individual needs of their children.

animated Australian flag

Without revenue from advertising
by educational suppliers and Google Ads
we could not continue to provide information
to home educators. Please support us by letting
our advertisers know that you found them on
The Educating Parent. Thanks!

Beverley's books are excellent for building confidence as a home educator says Tracey, homeschooling mum.

Support Centre
Contact Us | Join a Support Group | Beverley's Books | Resource Directory | Blog | Donate

About The Educating Parent
Beverley Paine | April Jermey and Always Learning Books | Advertise with us

Sitemap

What is Home Education Why Home Educate Getting Started & Registering Different Ways to Home Educate
Life as a Home Educator Resources & Support Teens and Beyond Curriculum and Teaching Tips
Unschooling & Natural Learning Travelling & Home Educating Other: just for fun, general, etc Children's Pages

animated smiling face Thank you for visiting!

Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent
The opinions and articles included on this website are not necessarily those of Beverley and Robin Paine,
nor do they endorse or recommend products listed in contributed articles, pages, or advertisements.
This website uses browsing cookies and conducts other means to collect user information in order to display contextual ads.
Site Map. Text and images on this site © All Rights Reserved 1999-2018.