Write Your Own Homeschool Curriculum, Part 1
© Beverley Paine
This article should help you work out what your children need to learn and how you can help them learn it. Home education allows you to design your own curriculum. Why leave the content and direction of their education up to others to decide? By writing your own curriculum you are able to personalise their education and offer truly individualised learning programs tailored to their unique learning needs, interests and developing personalities.
We do this by asking: How well do you know your child?
Understanding your children's individual learning and developmental needs will make it a lot easier to teach them at home.
Next ask yourself: 'What do I want my children to learn?'
Think long term: What kind of adults do you want them to become? This determines your educational philosophy.
Think short term: What do they need to know right now? This tells you what skills and content to focus on this year.
A curriculum is a road map to adulthood. There are things your children must learn along the way and there are interesting things that can be learned. Don't lose sight of the destination as you journey the homeschooling trail together.
Long term goals could be.
Short term goals could be really what you want to happen sometime today, sometime this week, this month or year.
Consider your children's interests, developmental ability, and hobbies. Think about learning in each of the curriculum subject areas. Review what your child already knows and can do and build on these. Spend a couple of minutes listing your short term goals. What will you focus on now, next week, this month, this year? You list might look like this:
Keep adding goals to suit your unique family's needs! Home educators continually revise and build on their list of goals.
The new national Australian Curriculum "sets out the core knowledge, understanding, skills and general capabilities important for all Australian students" and when completed will be a great starting place for you to check that what you are doing with your family matches the expectations of society. As of August 2012, Maths, English, Science and History curriculum guidelines for years 1-10 were ready to use.
See also related articles listed under 'New to Homeschooling'
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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.
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Welcome to the
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!
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Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent
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