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Introduction to
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What are you required to teach your child?

© Beverley Paine

You are free to teach your children in whatever way you want. Educational authorities require that your homeschool learning program will generally cover the same or similar material as that offered by the state school system: in some jurisdictions this is mandated and in others the curriculum guidelines are simply that - guidelines. Some now ascribe 'year levels' to home educating students, but they all recognise that learning is a continuum and that a child may be at one year level for a particular subject and another level in others. Flexibility in interpreting and implementing the curriculum guidelines is common practice in schools and homeschools.

The way home educating families start teaching their children at home often changes - many times! We learn on the job, adapting different approaches and teaching techniques to suit our children's learning styles and needs. See Homeschooling Approaches and Methods or you purchase my handy, inexpensive Practical Homeschooling Series booklet, Choosing Homeschool Curriculum.

The eight nationally recognised curriculum subjects are (some may be worded differently depending on where you live):

  • English and Language Development
  • Learning a Language Other Than English
  • The Sciences (Biology, Geology, Physics, etc)
  • Technology and Enterprise, Information Technology
  • The Arts (Visual Arts, Dance, Music, Performance)
  • Personal Development, Physical Development & Health
  • Society and Environment Studies, Geography & History
  • Mathematics

You will find copies of your state or territory curriculum on the internet. These don't have to followed 'to the letter', so don't be intimidated. Talk to local homeschooling families and find out what is expected.

Below I've set out a simply way to wrrite your own learning program. For more comprehensive information see my book Getting Started with Homeschooling. Chapters 5, 6 & 7 of offers many tips and ideas for how to plan, write and
evaluate learning programs.

Divide a page into three columns.

  • Brainstorm a list of things you want you child to learn this year in each subject area - break subjects into smaller topics to make it easier.
  • List what resources you could use for each item - these could be text books, software, tutors, games, etc.
  • List how you will know that your child has learned
    each one.

It is best to do this activity with each of your children - they can tell you what they want to learn, what interests them, offer ideas about how, etc.

Remember, what you teach your child and what she will learn will depend on her developmental understanding and abilities. Learning activities and lessons must build on what she already knows and can do to be successful. Think about 'developmental stage' rather than 'age appropriate' learning activities. Goals and objectives need to be realistic and achievable by the learner.

Most children leaving school need remedial work or revision in some areas they may have not thoroughly understood. This is okay - take your time and pay attention to detail. Some children will race ahead enthusiastically, enjoying being able to use accelerated learning techniques at home.

What you teach will also depend on how you structure your day and your activities and will mostly likely be a blend of one-on-one sessions with individual children, or group learning situations with siblings or homeschooling friends.

There is no requirement for a set timetable, but if it helps create one that suits your family. You are not limited to six hours a day of instruction time: you have all day and all weekend, 52 weeks of every year! Homeschooling is a relaxed and rewarding education for the home family.

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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.

"You've been an inspiration to me, I love the way
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"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."

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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.

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complete comprehensive step by step program that teaches you how to craft your ultimate homeschool

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Online science lessons for primary school aged home educating children

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

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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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