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Defining What We Do

by Beverley Paine, Aut 2012, revised Jan 2016

What is the difference between homeschooling and unschooling?
I find that I use homeschooling more often than any other descriptor because people seem to instantly understand what I'm talking about. I prefer the term home education as a generic term but even now still get a few blank or confused looks. In the last few years unschooling has become a popular term and some think it is the same as homeschooling - it isn't.

Homeschooling is taking responsibility for and control of your children's education personally instead of delegating it to a school or teacher. You select from a huge range of pedagogical approaches and learning materials and resources. Unschooling may be one of these.

Unschooling goes further than homeschooling: it is a rejection of the traditional reasons for schooling children and the methods used to educate them - that is, segmenting learning into chunks and spoon feeding it according to a set timetable as though children are passive receivers of knowledge and skills. Unschooling is respecting children and young people as individuals and capable learners. It is trusting in their innate natural learning ability. Instead of teaching children what we think they ought to know because someone else says they should, we help them learn what they need to learn in order to grow and develop. It's much more than an approach to the education of children, it's a way of life.

Natural learning is simply celebrating the fact that everyone learns all the time and that by reflecting on the processes by which we learn we can become more focused in meeting our learning needs efficiently, achieving our goals and purposes in our own way and time frame.

Radical unschoolers take the principles of unschooling and apply it holistically across all areas of life, not just to the 'education' of their children. It's not simply living without school and the whole school paradigm of education, and it's way more than living without 'boundaries' and 'rules' - it's living with trust and respect, relationships and connections as the drivers of all actions.

The aim of The Educating Parent is to help others de-school (question and challenging our conditioning about the role and purpose of education) so that they can fully enjoy learning at home with their children no matter what approach to education they adopt. As educating parents we will find that what, how and why of what we're doing constantly changes as it meets the changing needs of our growing children and our family circumstances.

See also About Home Education

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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 support 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

I am currently giving this site a much needed facelift!
If you experience difficultiess accessing any page can you
please email me the link? Thank you.

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

We began educating our three children in 1985, when our eldest was aged five years. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn as they grew and explored and discovered this amazing world since the moment 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. I hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was!

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'.

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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.

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Link to Educate and Assist for home educating familiesEducating the World One Student at a Time AOIA Online Education

Supervised school of distance education

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

Belinda Cowie Whisper Waters Educational Resource for Home Educating FamiliesSTEM tutoring

Click here to go to Home Learn cover the 'core' with room to explore! Sydney Dance/Sports Classes for home educating students

Maths Mentality helping parents understand primary school mathematics

 

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