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

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


Free directory of Australian homeschooling and unschooling support groups organised by national, state and territories

Plan, record and report all in the one document! Always Learning Books planners available in each year level to suit your homeschooling needs, includes curriculum checklists
Let Beverley and friends help you design and write your own curriculum to suit your child's individual learning needs, learn how to prepare lessons, unit studies and more, record and evaluate your children's learning in this series of 3 parent workbooks developed on Beverley's popular homeschool manual Getting Started with Home School Practical Considerations
this Always Learning Year 7 Plan is everything you need to get started a comprehensive collection of curriculum aligned resources and links to activities, lesson plans and unit studies for your year 7 homeschooling student
Introduction to
Home Education
  National and State
Support Groups
  Yearly Planner, Diary & Report Series of How To
Parent Workbooks
Yr 7 Learning Plan

Support Groups: National SA VIC NSW QLD TAS ACT NT
Registration Guides: VIC NSW QLD SA WA TAS ACT NT

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Locating resources

© Beverley Paine

Remember - it's not your job to teach your child everything there is to know! Homeschooling families draw on the entire environment and community as resources. For many homeschool families there is no difference between 'life' and education. Children are always learning! Sometimes we don't like what they are learning and it often easier to identify those resources which give rise to unwanted informal learning than it is to recognise the very many wonderful resources at our fingertips which can offer our children positive and constructive learning experiences.

People - access to a wide variety of people each week - is incredibly underated as learning resources for children. Learn to see everyone you and your children meet as valuable esources: friends, family, professional and community workers, groups, special interest tutors, classes, clubs, etc. Get involved in your local community! Go along to local markets, festivals, celebrations and activities. Build strong local networks - these will form a strong foundation for your children's education as they move into their teenage and early adult life.

Excursions equals motivation! Think museums, work places, parks, shops, etc. Get out and about as often as possible. Begin small with a daily walk around your neighbourhood. Look at places differently - take an interest. Ask questions as you walk and talk about what you see. Learn to see the architecture in the shopping centre and start comparing it with other architecture you see - anything can be a springboard for learning or sparking a life long interest in your children. Homeschooling doesn't just happen at the table in your living room!

Use things you already have in your home: books, toys, games, kitchen, garage, garden, computer, etc. Get busy making and creating... in the kitchen, in the shed, in the garden, on the dining table. Children of all ages love learning with their whole bodies - not just their eyes and ears.

Use your local library or begin to build your own. Books form the basis of many homeschoolers learning programs. Stock it with not only fiction but how to books and reference books too. It will probably end up your best educatonal investment. The internet is very useful to keeping in touch with other homeschooling families as well as providing a wealth of information and learning opportunities - there are millions of excellent learning resources and websites online.

Recycle - and if you find a good resource, share that information with other home educators! This will help your home from becoming cluttered.

Children progress through planned lessons much faster than their schooled peers and generally need less programmed time to do academic work. If you are following a school-at-home approach a few good text books or online tutoring programs are really all you need.

Every month I update FREE The Educating Parent Resource Directory which has hundreds of listings of educational and curriculum suppliers. It's a great place to start when looking for resources!

Text and student work books are available from home education suppliers. These are businesses run by families who have homeschooled their children and understand that all too often work-books and text-books written for the classroom don't translate easily into the home environment. Many have written lessons and unit studies specifically for home educating families.

Quality bookstores often stock work-books and text-books for the education market. Ask your local homeschool contact or group for information about those in your area.

Free lesson plans can be found on the internet, but take time to source. Again, belonging to a homeschool network can come in handy - ask people what they use and why. Some groups build lists of favourite online resources. Others organise group discounts.

Second-hand materials, available online or through local groups, will save you lots of money. Most of us take advantage of these, saving our money for exhibitions or holidays or expensive specialist equipment.

Enrolment in distance education schools (criteria to be met) and part time attendance at school (not easily available in all states) can satisfy gaps in learning, particularly during the teenage years.

And lastly, curriculum guidelines for all states are published on the internet. Although they don't tell you how to teach each subject or give explicit lesson plans they do provide an overall idea of what can be taught. I used them to help brainstorm ideas when our homeschool life became a little lack-lustre or if I was started to worry about 'falling behind' in some area.

With purchasing resources, before you buy, ask yourself:

  • How much time do I have?
  • How much money do I have?
  • How much structure do I want/need?
  • Does this material convey my values?
  • Is the material a good "fit" for my child?

The goal is to create a curriculum that is concise, memorable and, most of all, meaningful for your child. And one you can work with! It should also be flexible and adaptive, as your child's learning needs evolve to match her changing personal interests and goals. Don't spend too much money at the beginning. Secondhand resources, recylcing and judicious use of the library and internet can provide most of the materials that you will need. Talk to others and carefully examine curriculum materials before buying them. Funds may be better spent on memberships to science museums than on a set of text books!

See also Resources.

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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.

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with increased confidence in my ability to provide and
share a wonderful learning journey with my family!"

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wisdom changed our lives. We now offer support and
organise many homeschooling events for others."

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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."

image is 3 workbooks for parents set on a background showing bushland, DIY home ed curriculum planning, recording, evaluating, write your own curriculum
Want to learn how to write your own education plans
to suit your unique children's individual learning needs?

Or you are looking for quality curriculum and teaching tips...

Comprehensive 3 workbook 'how to home ed' course
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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


Getting Started with
Home Educating Series of


#1 Create Your
Own Curriculum

#2 DIY Lesson Plans
& Unit Studies

#3 Recording and Evaluation Made Simple

$10.00 each (includes postage)

let experienced home educators Beverley, Tamara and April walk you through HOW to create a learning plan that builds on solid foundations that works for YOUR family AND ticks all the boxes for home educaton registration with part 1 of this getting started with home educating serioes of parent workbooks, Create Your Own Curriculum!
Let experienced home educators Beverley, Tamara and April walk you through HOW to create a learning plan that builds on solid foundations that works for YOUR family AND ticks all the boxes for home educaton registration!

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

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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'.

The Educating Parent acknowledges the Traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Owners, the Custodians of Australia, and pay our respects to Elders past and present and extend that respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people viewing this website.

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Home education is a legal alternative
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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.

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Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent
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