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

HomeAboutBlogArticles Curriculum Resource DirectoryShopKids PagesFacebook

Support Groups: NationalSAVICNSWQLDTASACTNT
Registration Guides: VICNSWQLDSAWATASACTNT

Download our FREE The Educating Parent Resource Directories today! Plus... more FREE resources!

Free download a quick guide to getting started with homeschooling and unschooling by Beverley Paine The Educating Parent in this excellent Resource Directory
Introduction to
Home Education

Download for FREE this huge collection of links to online Australian homeschool and unschool support groups in this special The Educating Parent Resource Directory by Beverley Paine
National and State
Support Groups

Essential Step by Step Guides

#1 Create Your Own Curriculum
#2 DIY Lesson Plans & Unit Studies

Getting Started with Home Educating Series of
PARENT WORKBOOKS,
let experienced home educators Beverley, Tamara and April walk you through HOW to create a learning plan that builds on solid foundations that works for YOUR family AND ticks all the boxes for home educaton registration!

Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent 
April Jermey, Always Learning Books
Tamara Kidd, Tutor Your Own Child,
B.Teach(Primary)/B.A.,GCertEdStud

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

 

Role Reversal! Unexpected Lessons from When My Children Taught Me...

© Beverley Paine

I am learning to play one of the children's favourite role playing computer games.

Computer games worry me - not that I dislike my children playing them, especially as they have a restricted time limit they happily work to, but because I am frightened of looking like a fool, or 'messing up', of accidentally 'killing' my character. I have seen the children emerge from such games flushed with an adrenalin rush... could I, an old timer, cope?

I have also seen adults become addicted to computer games, even mundane ones like Solitaire.... this I want to avoid!

Well, last week I took the plunge and some interesting things developed.

Roger and Thomas are keen to help me develop my character's attributes, but they chastise me for silly mistakes, like walking into walls (unfamiliar with the mouse controls). Because I am twenty plus years older than them I tolerate their frustrated cries and critical comments, but find the comments still sting, especially when the game hots up and action is needed rapidly and help would be more useful than criticism!

I have found the boys have little tolerance for my learning process. Comments such as:

"How come you don't learn the first time?"
"I've shown you how to do that LOTS of times!"
"You just don't learn!"
"How come you never remember?"

My responses vary from groans, sighs, and frustrated cries of "I give up!"

Thomas refuses to watch me play now. He's frustrated that he can't take over the controls, desperate to demonstrate how the game should be played, rather than put up with my clumsy and repetitive mistakes... I'm not allowed to fumble through, make my own mistakes as I discover the nuances of game play. He knows the easy way and wants me to listen to his tips and hints and learn all the short cuts. But I'm not so sure it's the best way to learn...

Something about all this sounds dreadfully familiar. And I can't help smiling: Once again my children have taught me a few things about the nature of teaching and the nature of learning.

I've found I like to learn by myself, in my own time, when I'm ready, feel motivated and confident. I want to call the shots. And I want some help available, but only when I call for it. I want someone to keep an eye on me, to wisely share some helpful tips, but without giving me the solutions. I like to be gently led... I don't want to be rushed. I don't want to be continually reminded just how much of a novice I am. I want my helper to be endlessly patient. I want recognition of when I do well: I want them to be excited about my learning success, just as I am, but not to take the credit
for it.

As to teaching, well, I am totally surprised to find this huge innate drive in Thomas to teach.... and to teach in the time honoured way that I have come to hate - the way teachers teach in school... I had to ask myself: Did I teach my children like this; did I railroad their learning sensibilities in this way despite their continual and much maligned resistance. Learning a skill they have already mastered has given me a taste of my own medicine!

My foray into learning how to play a popular computer game taught me that the combination of child as teacher and Beverley as learner is just as frustrating as the combination of child as learner and Beverley as teacher!

We need to move beyond this uncomfortable method of instruction and find solutions that satisfy the both our needs. I'm sure it can be done; just wish I'd worked this out sooner!

Had someone told me I would learn so much about the nature of learning and teaching from playing a computer game I wouldn't have believed them. Once again one of my interests has turned into an exploration about the nature of learning, and a topic for homeschooling discussion!

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!

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
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

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

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.

have your best homeschooling year ever by watching all of the aweome videos from over 30 Australian Homeschool Summit workshops featuring Beverley Paine, Kelly George, Tamara Kid, April Jermey and more

Over 30 presentations!

2021 Australian Homeschooling Summit

For $29 you get lifetime access to recordings
of all the workshops, all associated resource guides, dDownload all video and mp3 files
Amazing homeschooling help!

To see the full range of Beverley Paine's books on homeschooling, unschooling and natural learning visit Always Learning Books

Tap into Beverley's experience through her books

"Your books, your blogs helped me beyond words...
they helped me to find comfort in knowing it is ok to choose
exactly what is best for my family." Nisha

"Your books and information are mind blowing and already
I am feeling good about this new experience." Diane

Connect with Beverley and ask questions
through her online The Educating Parents Homeschooling and Unschooling Facebook support groups.

purchase Beverley's practical and common sense books on homeschooling and unschooling
"Your guidance, understanding, support & words of wisdom changed our lives." Leslie

"I feel specially inspired by Beverley's words and, the more I read her comments, the more inspired I feel, since my need for support, respect for different parenting styles, and information are fully met." Marijo

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

Australia's best home education consultant, let Tamara Kidd guide and help you prepare your home education registration application or review

Online science lessons for primary school aged home educating children

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

30% discount for purchases from ReadyEd Publications when you use the code 'homeschool' at  the checkout

reset your mindset for homeschooling success with deschooling essentials a quick course to help build your confidence as an educating parent

subscription video art lessons by Australian artist

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.

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!

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

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 face Thank 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.
This website uses browsing cookies and conducts other means to collect user information in order to display contextual ads.
Text and images on this site © All Rights Reserved 1999-2021.