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Beverley Paine, Feb 2012
There are so many areas in my life where I attempt to do something and then feel disappointed in the result. We're DIY people and my husband prefers to just start building. First we talk about what we want and then he starts building, collecting what he needs along the way. Helping and watching him frustrate me enormously: he frequently needs to stop work because he doesn't have the appropriate materials on hand and because that frustrates him he often takes short cuts which means he needs to rejig the original plan and what we end up with isn't exactly what we want.
We did, however, follow a plan - which my husband drew himself - for both houses we've built. We had a list of building materials and specifications which I helped put together. This was needed to get council approval.
And I'm glad we did because both houses are sound and safe and that's important! But we also changed minor things as we built, adapting the plan to suit our growing understanding about our needs and what we want in a dwelling.
I know I would be much happier in our continuing DIY lifestyle if we drew up more plans on paper that would help guide us, track our thoughts and the changes we make along the way. It would assist me in feeling confident and optimistic, bring more enjoyment and satisfaction while doing the work.
I believe I remained confident with this approach because every year I put down on paper my goals for his education and reaffirmed my beliefs about education: this was our natural learning curriculum. If anyone wanted to look at it they would see that I was covering what was expected by society from an educational program for a child of his developmental stage. This curriculum - my planning document - together with our haphazard recording regime - continued to strengthen my confidence in home education.
What I love most about doing this is the freedom it gives us to be flexible. In the same way that understanding how the components in our house went together, as well as the nature of them, allowed us to tweak the design here and there as we built.
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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.
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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Beverley Paine, The Educating Parent
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