HomeAboutAdvertiseBooksResource DirectoryCurriculumArticlesContactKids PagesFollow Beverley Paine, The Educating Paine, on Facebook



Tap into Beverley's
Educating Parent
experience through her books

You are being redirected to Always Learning Books where you can purchase Beverley Paine's books on how to home educate your children

 


Download your free copy

Download Beverley's free The Educating Parent Resource Directory for information about getting started, support groups, blogs and an extensive list of books about homeschooling and unschooling



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

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

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

More on our LEGO homeschool curriculum...

© Beverley Paine, January 2009

I remember a fantastic 'town' layout on the bedroom floor... all three of my children slept in the one room on high bunks (until our eldest was 14!) as our house was small back then. Space was at a premium but there was always room for LEGO layouts.

This town had a HUGE zoo. This was about the time that DUPLO began making animal LEGO. The zoo also had things like show rides - ferris wheels, etc. My children loved to replicate real life in LEGO form!

It is easy to see the across the curriculum learning happening when children engage in games this complex that last for days or weeks.

Writers like Tolkien and the Bronte sisters were reported as having spent large chunks of their childhood playing games in an imaginary world. I did the same thing: if I wasn't reading a book as a child I was continuing a story in my head, or playing elaborate games with my brother with matchbox cars. We'd use the same characters and continuously develop the story, like a series of chapter books!

The technical, creative and design skills that develop when modelling, even with small plastic bricks like LEGO, underpin learning in maths, physics, craft and technology. It's easy to introduce other elements: make tiny labels for LEGO shops in town centres in another language. My children built the typical old fashioned cages for their zoo, but a discussion on the changing nature of zoos and the reasons behind this soon meant changes to the layout!

LEGO in our home was far more than a few models that the children built and then displayed, or a box of bricks that came out occasionally. I remember when Thomas was about fifteen he and I built a floating table with LEGO bases that we could use to play cards on in the paddling pool during a sustained heat wave (we had a deck of plastic playing cards that stuck together when they got wet!)

Inspired by a LEGO exhibition Roger created a couple of amazing murals. The technical and design skill, and patience required, amazed me. It was like putting together a jigsaw puzzle where the picture was in your head...

We found that the more basic bricks the children had the greater variety of things they could make and create with LEGO. For a while LEGO stopped selling boxes of basic bricks and suddenly we had oodles of wheels and specialist pieces... Not so good! Luckily LEGO saw sense and we could order bricks from their spare parts department.

I can't remember every buying LEGO at full price. We would wait until the sales - usually in October - when we could source LEGO sets at up to half price. The children would save any money they received for birthdays and Christmas and spend it on LEGO. Our house was full of toys which, when played with, would always end up as elaborate stories that lasted days: Slyvannian families and Barbie dolls meant building houses and furniture and making clothes, matchbox cars meant huge mines in the sandpit, or long adventures in the jungle (garden), etc. Rather than have a roomful of toys our children built collections of a few well chosen toys.

On reflection I think that this play in miniature worlds, rather than dramatic role playing (dress ups) probably reflected that there is six years between our eldest and youngest. In this way I think my children instinctively compromised and found a way to cooperatively play that satisfied most of their developmental needs. I used to worry that our youngest had missed out on the dress-up games stage of life, but a quick flip through the photos shows this wasn't the case. It's just that LEGO and small cars and small dolls seemed to dominate play most of the time.

We had two rules for playing LEGO (and any other toy). You don't start more than two games at once. If you have a game in progress, you can only start one more game, but to start another you must put one game away, even if that means destroying an elaborate layout that covers the living room floor! The other rule was that there must be a clear passage to each child's bed at night. This meant that I could kiss them goodnight or access them during the night if they were unwell or had a nightmare without tripping over or stabbing myself with sharp edged LEGO bricks!

Storage... mmm. We used LOTS of bookshelves and open trays, usually the trays from the LEGO boxes. The children would sit surrounded by these trays and build for hours. I would spend hours sorting LEGO bricks into different trays to make building easier.

See also A LEGO Curriculum! and The Value of Play: Lego

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!

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'.

Advertise with The Educating Parent

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.

Access all the content plus BONUSES from the Australian Homeschool Summit

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

30% discount off ReadyEd Publications for homeschoolers until 31st December 2016

Find out more about Brain Builder by clicking here!

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

 

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!


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 faceThank 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.
Site Map
. Text and images on this site © All Rights Reserved 1999-2017.