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

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Examples of Natural Learning by Unschooling Families

Please email your examples of natural learning to be included on this page - thank you!

Melinda A shares:

Just when I'm starting to worry I haven't "done" any learning-type activities (yeah, I know) with my daughter in a while, she suddenly today started counting by 2's. It all came about because she had set herself the challenge of doing 20 forward rolls on her gym mat, only to realise by the time she got to the 10th one that 20 was actually quite a lot of forward rolling. She thought for a moment, and announced, "I know...I'll count every second number instead. That way, I only have to do half of what's left."

I think that means she's more than got the hang of maths, for a four year old!

When that theory was tested and found suitable, she announced, "Now, I'm going to count using all the leftover numbers..." and counted by 2's up to 51 using only odd numbers.

Didn't have to explain - or teach - a thing.

Cath N shares:

I bought a pack of EVA foam circles today, because we are making lily pads in order to have a "frog pond bath" tonight (with a bag full of bath frog toys). Miss 3 begins gleefully cutting and shredding the colours I wasn't using for lily pads, and I was JUST about to tell her not to wreck them when I realised she was in absolute toddler heaven..."Look at me Mummy! I'm doing ARTY CRAFTY!"... then all of a sudden she was making "phases of the moon" shapes from the circles and handing me crescent moons and full moons etc (whilst telling me what they were)... another unschooling lesson learned FOR MUM... just keep your mouth shut and watch the magic happen...

Miss 3 has a book called "Mazeworld" by John Pinkney, which is her current favourite bedtime read. The page in the photo is one of the mazes. A couple of days ago she started to ask questions about the text, such as "what's a drone bee?" and "what are the solid cells and the honey wells?"

So what does a mamma do but find her a honey farm with a glass hive to go visit! So now we know all about how honey is made, what the Queen bee looks like, what worker bees do, and why pollen from different flowers makes honey that tastes different. Plus of course we had a mammoth honey-tasting session and picked a couple of favourites to bring home. In addition to this both my kids have colds at the moment so we picked up some Manuka honey as a natural cure for sore throats, so we can learn a bit about how food can do more than just feed us, and that bees are not buzzy and annoying, they are a really important part of our ecosystem.

I love that I found out about natural learning, because it's opened up a whole new world for me too. Instead of saying "Oh I don't know!" to her questions (which I may have done before) now I say "We'll find out shall we?". I love the way an innocent question over a bedtime story can have a cascade effect, and you can never be sure exactly where it's going to lead you!

 

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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.

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Welcome to the World of Home Education
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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'.

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