Growing Up Inquisitive About the World
© Beverley Paine, August 2007
[this article forms part of a series on Geography you can buy as a Practical Homeschooling booklet from Always Learning Books ]
Children are playing in the sand. They make roads for cars. One builds a castle where a doll can live. Another scoops out a hole, uses the dirt to make a hill, and pours some water in the hole to make a lake. Sticks become bridges and trees. The children name the streets, and may even use a watering can to make rain.
Although they don't know it, these children are learning the principles of geography. They are locating things, seeing how people interact with the Earth, manipulating the environment, learning how weather changes the character of a place, and looking at how places relate to each other through the movement of things from one place to another.
Remember thumbing through an atlas or encyclopedia as a child, imagining being an adventurer exploring tropical jungles, travelling across dunes on a safari in Africa, boating up the Mississippi River, climbing the peaks of the Himalayas, visiting ancient cathedrals and castles of Europe, fighting the Mongolians beside the Great Wall of China? I do! The world seemed full of faraway, exotic, and wonderful places that I wanted to know more about.
Our children are in a similar fashion inquisitive about the world. Documentaries reveal so much more of it than we glimpsed as children but movies still cast those places as exotic and romantic, stirring the imagination with the kind of stories that engage children. Translating that interest into knowledge that we can use to inform us throughout life doesn't take a lot effort.
We kept a globe and atlas handy and were forever using road maps and street directories when in the car. All reveal a lot of geographical information about the world and are interesting to explore in their own right. As a kid a friend and I played a game called 'capital cities': one of us would call out a country and the other would name the capital city. We competed with each other to know the most. Another game was calling out the name of a country that began with the last letter of the country previously said. Such games were great to play in the car on long journeys. And without much effort taught the names of countries. It does without saying that we'd search the maps in the atlas for names of countries!
Few adults seem to know where other countries are, or what the seas and oceans are called. Making informed decisions or forming opinions about current events around the world calls for geographic knowledge and understanding.
Was this article helpful? Was it worth $1.00 to you?
Your gift of $1 or more helps to keep this site operating
and reassurance to families
better outcomes for their children.
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
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.
Over 30 presentations!
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!
"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
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.
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!