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Why We Started Homeschooling

© Beverley Paine

As a teenager I became very interested in the problems in society - not much different back then as they are today! I wondered why, with such brilliant schooling as we had in Australia, did young people fall through the cracks - teenage pregnancy, drug abuse, alcohol abuse, delinquency.

I could see that parents played a large part in how their children behaved and the attitudes these young people were developing. I began to wonder if schools alone couldn't fix the problem - perhaps we needed schools for parents, before they had children of their own! For most of my adult life I've rejected and fought against this idea, but it does show that as a young teen I was desperate to come up with solutions that would give all children a better chance at happiness, health and prosperity.

My ultimate aim, even back then, was 'world peace'. Somehow I knew that only when we have solved the problems at the level of the family could we enjoy more harmonious relationships between nations.

This interest in why schools weren't doing the job of educating people intensified once I had children of my own. Something unexpected happened though: when our eldest child turned five we realized that we didn't want to hand her over to strangers to play with and help her learn all day. We were enjoying that job immensely and didn't want things to change.

Three weeks before her sixth birthday we gave birth to our youngest: we were worried that sending her off to school would look like 'replacing' her. We'd been teaching her since birth. Luckily for us we had found out about home education at an alternative lifestyle conference in Victoria and had made contact with home educators in that state.

Very few families home educated their children in South Australia openly at that time - over twenty years ago now! It was hard finding like-minded people and, encouraged by a friend who lived 8 hours away, I started the SA Home Based Learners Newsletter. This began my homeschool writing career. I subscribed to Growing Without School (a USA magazine started by John Holt) and Otherways (produced by a Victorian homeschool cooperative). And I borrowed and bought whatever books I could on the subject! These kept my confidence strong whenever I felt unsure about what we were doing with our family.

Our eldest had a hybrid education, with some part time and full time schooling as well as homeschooling. Our youngest was completely unschooled. What I have learned is that it doesn't matter how your child is educated, though homeschool is by far way more efficient than school: it is the love and devotion and interest we show in our children that makes the difference to their education as young people.

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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

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Maths Mentality helping parents understand primary school mathematics

 

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