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

HomeAboutBlogArticles Curriculum Resource DirectoryShopKids PagesFacebook


Download our FREE The Educating Parent Resource Directories today! Plus... more FREE resources!

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

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

Join Beverley LIVE at the 2021 online Australian Homeschooling Summit, don't miss out on her workshops, What is my child learning and Inside Beverley's classroomJoin Beverley and friends
LIVE in February at the
2021 online Australian
Homeschooling Summit!

But you don't have to wait until then - grab this limited-time special offer for the best Aussie homeschooling help you can get! Get the recordings of ALL 78 workshops + 15 bonus sessions from the 2017, 2019, and 2020 Australian Homeschooling Summits.

Get instant lifetime access for only $49!

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


Creative Solutions Using Goal Setting

© Beverley Paine

The problem of logistical hurdles seldom prevents me from doing whatever I want to do. Over the years I've developed a practical way of thinking that says that if something isn't happening then perhaps the obstacles are the lessons I need to focus on, rather than the desire. In this way I've learned much about my limitations and how to accept them. From that platform of self-knowledge I either concentrate on my existing skills and talents, and improve them, or work out gentle ways to challenge and extend those areas of limitation.

Where logistical hurdles force a complete stop to all activity in a particular direction, I examine the causes objectively and usually find that the desire was inappropriate or unrealistic in the first place.

For example, I wanted to go to University in my late thirties, but the course I chose necessitated learning on campus. This meant renting a house in the city and coming home on weekends, at considerable inconvenience to other family members. It was also something we couldn't afford. Over three months I worked hard to create this reality, but eventually came to see that I wasn't ready to push in that direction yet. In fact, the desire to study at University was externally driven. I could achieve the same results by self-education without leaving home and with greater efficiency. While searching for a creative solution to facilitate my desire I realised what motivated me and what I really wanted to achieve. I learned more about myself.

Since then I tend to analyse logistical problems and ask 'why have I created this block', acknowledging and celebrating the way logistical problems naturally slow down the headlong rush down paths that may not suit, or may be externally motivated. If it becomes apparent that I actually want the original goal, that it is my heart's desire, then logistical problems seem to evaporate in a cloud of creative solutions that pop out of nowhere. Things happen, and quickly. The universe provides, abundantly. I trust in this process. Experience has shown it truly works.

Often conflict is embedded in the process. Things seem to go wrong, or become difficult. I celebrate conflict as the sharp end of the learning curve. If I am observant and objective enough I learn rapidly. With a positive attitude, problems become solutions, usually to issues I hadn't recognised initially.

This positive attitude was tested to the limit with my sister's illness and eventual death. Instead of focusing on unrealistic goals I did my utmost to learn the difficult lessons this time provided for me. Each obstacle challenged me to grow. Often I couldn't see the nature of the lessons until I reflected upon them much later, with an objective mind. My sister's life became a gift of self-development for me, in ways that I had not anticipated.

Setting realistic goals is important. A few years ago we made a wish list at New Year. As the year passed we crossed off the goals achieved. All but the most unrealistic, like winning the Lotto or owning a $500,000 car, were realised. The desire for a swimming pool was realised in an unexpected, but delightful way. We purchased an adequate inflatable paddling pool for $60 that we could all sit in and cool off - the real desire behind our need for a pool.

Last year I found a list of long-term goals I'd recorded in 1986. Ninety percent of those goals have been achieved. The ones that weren't didn't accurately reflect who we were as people, but were externally motivated by the need to conform or please others. The same holds true for our lists of tasks we complete on a daily basis. The realistic ones get done. I think this is because we continuously reflect upon who we are, what we want, and what our limitations, talents and abilities are. We also reflect upon how the world affects us, through peer group pressure, media exposure, cultural rituals and so on. Sorting out the externally driven motivations and desires from the personally meaningful internally driven motivation and desires can be difficult, but it certainly makes a difference to how and when goals are achieved.

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."

"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!"

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

"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!"

"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."

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

Join Home Education Australia group: one space to share information, resources links and

You are invited to join Home Education Australia!
One well-organised space to find and share information,
resources links and more to support all home educators
across Australia, including a directory of posts and threads , where you can source all your needs related to home education and find what others are seeking and finding within Australia.

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'.

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.

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 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

Online science lessons for primary school aged home educating children

Teach Maths in the way that children learn with MathsUSee by MathsAustralia

30% discount for purchases from ReadyEd Publications when you use the code 'homeschool' at  the checkout

Help your child to learn how to play music with our app and children's books to them started - I Learning Music and Fun in the Music Room

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

Click here for music lessons for students with autism and other needs Spectrum Music Studio

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 here to go to Learning Enrichment Studio Fostering Students Academic Potential

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


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.
Text and images on this site © All Rights Reserved 1999-2021.