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The Educating Parent
Children learning and living naturally... at home and in the community.
formerly Homeschool Australia and Unschool Australia

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Getting Started with
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by Beverley Paine
A comprehensive common-sense manual detailing how to write your own curriculum tailored to your children's educational needs! $26.40
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"Thank you... The information you supply is real and generous - fantastic reading. Your honesty is rare. Most books do not really explain 'how' as well as you do." Tracy

"A fabulous source of information and inspiration... providing wonderful, detailed information and resources." Faye

"Every time I read your writing it feels like a pat on the shoulder, and that feels really good...Thanks!" Maaike

Since 1989 Beverley Paine has steadfastly promoted and supported home education as an educational choice for Australia families. Her books and websites aim to demystify education, gently deschooling families so that they may meet their children's individual and unique educational and developmental needs. Her honesty, insights and wealth of experience continues to bring hope, reassurance and confidence to families.

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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The children who have contributed items for this website live in Australia and all are educated at home by their parents.

A BIG THANK YOU goes to everyone who have sent letters for our Kids Pages.

Hi, my name is Pamela and I am 8. Yesterday in homeschool I went to the library and I read my some of my favourite books, and today I drew a huge display of the solar system. I really love homeschool because everyday is fun and exciting and I learn new things.
This year I am learning about space I am also growing a plant on my window seal because I love plants!
My mum is the best.
From Pamela

Thank you Pamela for your letter. I hope you enjoy reading the Kids Pages. Did you see the Lunar Eclipse earlier this month? It was cloudy where we live unfortunately. It would have been fantastic.  Your letter will be published in our next print edition and Thomas and I will let you know when it comes out at the end of this year. :-)  from the Editor

"Homeschooling is where you don't have to go to school, with a teacher that you might not know, it's when you get to do your work at home and your mum is your teacher. You never have to change teachers because your mum is your teacher forever." Julia, age 7

Hi Beverley,
Our seven year old, Julia, has said it would be OK to put her comments on the Unschool~Kidz site.
It is an interesting comment that gave me insight into how she feels about HS. She adored her teacher at school. She had her for two years in a row. This was a teacher who went the tenth mile for our daughter, and also encouraged us to HS. Julia agreed to HS but only if she saw the year out. Our 9 years old teacher was also from the same mould. So we really appreciated what they did for our girls. We wouldn't be here now but for them. I know Julia was very worried about changing teachers, I just didn't quite know how happy she was to come home.  Thankyou for all the info on your site. I did a great deal of research in the preparation for HS and found the site very useful.
from Marie

My name is Justin and I was 9 last October. I have just started homeschooling this year because I wanted to. My mum is my teacher. She is a teacher. One day I will send my favourite Science experiments and my stories and my poem to this site. I wrote a poem about a frog . It's a rap poem.
Dad's going to dig me a garden. I've always wanted one since Mm got her herb garden and I'm going to get a vegie one. It's going to be a very big space and we've already picked a space. We did that last week end. This week-end we will be digging it out and then the next weekend I will be digging it all out and then I will buy some vegies to plant in there.
I am going to do painting Mona Lisa and I just showed my Mum how to make a machie mask and one day I will do that too. I cook a lot of things. Chef That is one of my favourite subjects, cooking. I also like e-mailing my friends and when I get a mobile phone I can SMS them. I really like decorating the emails I make. I will keep reading this site to see what good stuff the other homeschool kids are into.

Dear Beverley, 
Thank you for providing this valuable opportunity for kids who don't go to school to shine and realise that their efforts are appreciated (and not just by mum). Beats the hell out of a reward certificate!
all the best, Davina

On the Australian Homeschool Yahoo Group I posted the following, after a question about the value of highschool certificates:

My daughter, April, now 21, has the following advice for young unschoolers is for them to find work, paid or voluntary, as soon as they feel confident to do so. Keep passionate about your interests and get a job. April went to school part and full-time as a teenager, then enroled in uni for a semester, so she knows it from both sides. Her opinion of the HSC is that it's a waste of time and it was ignored by her employers anyway - they were more impressed with her employment record, attitude and references. April hasn't discounted uni and thinks that she'll give it a go one day. She's done a traineeship by correspondence, completing the whole course in a fraction of the time allowed.
regards, Beverley

Elaine wrote back, and has kindly given permission for her response to be reproduced in the Kids Pages.

As an employer (and a parent of natural learners) I have to agree wholeheartedly with April's advice. We have employed four young people over the years, among others. The young adults we employed, though were very different individuals, all displayed the same key attributes. These are personality, attitude and motivation. Another thing these teenagers have in common is that their 'achievements', according to the mainstream highschools they attended, were not of high standards. None of the kids did poorly at school because they're not bright - they were victims of all the typical problems associated with the system... bullying, no provision for their talents, lack of stimulation etc. As employees we found them exceptional. They have gone on to acquire very advanced skills in their areas of interest and are very productive members of our business and of the community. One of them has gone on to successful self employment.
I won't get started on what I think of some of the TAFE and Uni 'education' on offer that we've had experience with, as that could well turn into volumes!
All the best, Elaine

Just checked out the site, and I am really glad it's there. I loved reading the stories and looking at the pictures in the gallery. Thanks for putting in the effort - it serves to meet a need for unschoolers in Australia and abroad.
Happy editing!
Kylie (Kiama NSW)

Check out Kylie's website ~ Why do we homeschool?

Thanks for organising the e-zine!

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Welcome to the world of home education - learning without school! We officially began educating our three children in 1985, when our eldest was five years. In truth, we had helped them learn what they need to learn as they grew and explored and discovered this amazing world since the moment they were each 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. I hope that your home educating adventure is as satisfying as ours was!
Beverley Paine

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