Mama's Musings

Why Home Based Learning?

Jun 19, 2020

“Children are being freed to learn as nature intended” – just one comment I will always remember from my 2002 research into why Australian parents were home educating their children.  I was curious as to why so many were taking the plunge into home based learning in Australia.  Recently, isolation-schooling during the pandemic has exposed the option to all families as a possibility.  Here, I explain why  a steadily-increasing number of families been home educating in Australia over the past few decades.

Some parents actively choose to home educate.  They make the decision sometime – whether when their children are infants (and even unborn), or when they feel dissatisfied with their children’s schooling for any reason.  Some parents feel that there was no other choice.  Perhaps they have exceptional or neurodiverse children, their children are sick or injured, they may be simply unable to cope with the stress...

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Childcare: Naturally?

Jun 15, 2020

 

Childcare is a matter that greatly affects parents and employers – the main cogs in our societal moneymaking machine.  Childcare benefits and tax deductions are offered as enticements but rarely are the needs of children considered by policymakers.  A focus on numbers, timeframes and dollars motivate the big decisions. Childcare is big business and is currently influencing almost all childhoods in Australia.  The Australian Bureau of Statistics tells us that 90 percent of children under five currently use some form of childcare.  Tens of thousands of Australian children are in formal childcare for more than 45 hours a week.

Natural parenting is an ideology, not a dogma.  It is about instinctively raising our young, and making informed decisions.  Does childcare compromise or compliment our conscious parenting ideals?  Are those who perceive theirs to be a natural parenting style more protective than most other parents? ...

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Socialisation: What About It?

Jun 12, 2020

Many articles have been written before on the socialisation of home educated children. Still, the question arises more often than most others. To many home educators it’s the most ironic question of all. I mean – what about it? Socialisation is the main reason some families choose home based learning. They don’t see school as an opportunity to learn positive social skills, but more as a place to experience negative socialisation. It seems surprising that those in the school community bother to ask about the home educated’s socialisation – can’t they see what is going on in their classrooms and playgrounds?

“This depends on the kind of sociability you prefer – positive and altruistic or negative and self-centred. Many parents confuse peer orientation and dependence with sociability when instead true sociality thrives on secure, independent thought.” Raymond and Dorothy Moore

Many parents of previously schooled children have...

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Frugal Homeschooling 101

Jun 05, 2020

Home educating on a budget may seem like a challenge at first, especially if you are attempting to gather as many resources as your average classroom. There is no need to rush out and buy a lot of equipment that you may not need. First, sit down and write a “wish list”, then highlight the items you feel are most necessary to begin.

There are many alternatives to expensive educational resources. Here are some ideas to help you save money in setting up your home learning space.

- Buy furniture which has multiple uses. Consider a large, second-hand dining table over individual desks, for example - or just use your dining table! Use open shelving rather than cupboards for storing supplies and books. This allows the children to see what is available for their use and is less expensive.  We've used bolt-together galvanised steel five-shelf units to hold games, puzzles, and construction kits.  The children can see everything on the shelves and they remain...

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Homeschooling: What’s it really like?

Apr 02, 2020

Homeschooling mum of seven, Belinda Moore, describes what a homeschooling lifestyle is really like.

Over twenty years ago I first heard about homeschooling. It was in the days before home internet connection, so all I had at first was a phone number of a Christian curriculum supplier in another state. From there I found the nearest contact person, who lived about 250km away from me.  From there I made another phone call and we received a newsletter in the mail full of personal stories, drawings, articles and inspiration. All the while I was thinking that this wasn’t the path for us, but as a parent and educator, I was intrigued.

Time passed and more snippets of homeschooling information and serendipitous contacts came into our lives. We managed to visit with the homeschoolers 250km away - and that sealed it! Theirs was a lifestyle we longed for; time with our children, free of the constraints of an education system we weren’t confident in, learning from...

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