and we’re registered for homeschooling

I remember a friend told me she received her registration for homeschooling last year. I was thinking to myself wow she really does things by the book. I’d just homeschool without registering. Wrong. There was quite the paperwork at my end to get my homeschooling plan written up and approved. In fact I think NSW has the most requirements when it comes to homeschooling your children. And oh the fun I had reading through the curriculum. I hadn’t picked one up since I studied towards a grad dip ed many years ago. And I can’t tell you how much fun it is to read outcome after outcome in language I wouldn’t usually use. But I did it, I might have had a block of chocolate to get me through the last bit of it on Sunday night. But we are all approved and registered to homeschool.

There are so many reasons why families homeschool and that’s certainly the case for us especially with so many personalities in our family. And it’s something that I’ve always wanted to do. That’s the short answer. I just needed to convince someone in the house.  We start homeschooling our twins next week and they are excited. I’m excited and a little nervous but mostly looking forward to it.

So here we are. I’ve got lots of great resources. You could go crazy spending money here there and everywhere but I’ve managed to keep books to a fairly reasonable budget with a few other resources thrown in to get us to the end of the year. I have read some amazing books and useful websites. We have a 12 month plan of what we are hoping to get through and that is what is required in NSW to register for homeschool. Although it was time consuming it gave me a great idea of what I wanted to do and the resources I would need. We created a learning space with a dining table that we weren’t using and with a bit of furniture rearranging.

I’m quite lucky that there are quite a few homeschooling groups near me and we have quite a number of homeschool families in our school community. They are the loveliest mums and some have been such a great help to me when I needed to suss out what was going to be right for me. I decided against an all in one curriculum and decided to pick and choose a bit from here and there so that I could include australian books for history, geography, maths and english but some US books for religion and reading.

Here are some great resources that really helped me and might help you too:

Beverley Paine

Her website and books were great for confirming what we needed to do and I think this is the best resource for Australian families.

HEA

The information on registering in NSW was super helpful and gave me lots of ideas to fill out my plan. Join them and they will send out a pack

Mulberry Magazine

Great inspiring online magazine with stories from australian families. Very inspiring and informative.

Suzie’s Home Education Ideas

Suzie very clearly spells out what you are required to do for NSW and how she did it. It was very helpful seeing her examples and photos. Thank you Suzie.

Ken Robinson’s TED talks even just for the entertainment value and if you need to convince someone else

Real Learning Education in the Heart of the Home

Elizabeth Foss’ amazing book that was so hard to track down for a reasonable price but worth every cent. If you can find her living book list here then it is a wonderful resource for planning the books you will read. I did find that the year 2 level was not what my children were reading so I picked a few books from the year 2 list and focused on the year 3 list as I have big readers who love their novels.

Five Senses Education (or a good educational bookstore) 

So many great books and I could just type in year 2 english or geography and lots of books came up

Modern Teaching Aids

Hide your credit card for this one. I did buy some cuisineaire rods for one little lady who really needs some help with understanding numbers and some magna tiles for all of the kids to play with. The magna tiles are a bit of a budget buster but I researched and decided they would be very helpful and also great for the preschoolers too.

Homeschooling Downunder

Lots of great advice and PDF booklets and books to buy.

Spotlight

Yes good old spotlight. We went a bit crazy on art supplies, desk accessories (we have some pretty neat desk caddies all filled up) and a few other supplies. Big W for lots of exercise books too.

Blogs

This a huge list of aussie homeschooling blogs and you probably have your favourites from overseas. I know I have a few.

Special needs distance education NSW

I’m just putting this is in here for those of you who have someone with special needs in NSW. No one mentioned this to me. Now the twins aren’t special needs but this is something that I’m interested in for my littlest miss. I thought it might help someone out there to know about the program, your child needs an intellectual disability to be eligible and live in NSW.

And school starts next monday so let the fun begin………………….

Comments

  1. In some ways I miss homeschooling and probably will do it again. I wish you peace, fun, patience and strength. Some days you may homeschool in pyjamas – relaxing, fun and perfectly acceptable! Above all remember that when it gets too much, God honours your choice to educate the children He blessed you with and everything will turn out okay. 😀🙏🏼

    • thank you, I’m excited and think it will turn out well but I that sometimes fear can hold you back from actually doing it so I’m kind of glad that we’re just doing it and not worrying too much:)

  2. I would really love to home school but there are just too many reasons not to, having to drop to one income, heaps of schools in the area, only one kid. Sigh. I think ill do both haha

  3. Helen Cairns says:

    Good luck with it all Corrie. How wonderful it is that we live in a world where you have this choice and well done for giving it a go. I have never home schooled my children however my husband started up his own business working from home a few years ago and he said the thing that helped him the most was keeping to a strict routine. Don’t see yourself as being ‘at home’ but in your ‘home class room’ you have created. This will help your kids switch on when they need to and switch off when they need to as well. At the very least, you will all be learning which is always a good thing.

  4. We are seriously considering homeschooling or 7 year old. We’ve been thinking about it since he started kindy last year, praying about it, talking to homeschooling friends and weighing up our options. It’s such a big decision, but I think we are at the point of just wanting to jump in and try. I can’t wait to read more of your journey!
    How long did it take you to do your application and get registered? We are also in NSW ☺

  5. As a teacher I NEVER thought I would approve of homeschooling…until I had my own kids. I knew the system didn’t fit some kids but I didn’t really ‘get it’ until I had my own. Now I don’t want to fit them into a box and I dont know that the schooling system is creating the kids we need for the future. Looking forward to hearing your journey with this. Xxx

    • thank you, there are some great FB groups if you are thinking about it:) and yes school right now is not preparing for the real world or jobs of the future.

  6. All the best – this is going to be fun! We began this year and I can attest that I feel so much more confident and on top after just a few terms …. you keep adjusting and things improve. It looks like you’re prepared for a great start!

  7. Michele says:

    Wishing you well on your home schooling journey. Keep us updated. I love Five Senses too. So many great resources there and great for buying birthday pressies too.

  8. Shelley says:

    That’s amazing news! We too are thinking of homeschooling our 4 kids (aged 3 to 10), beginning next year. I am looking forward to following your journey. And thanks for the tips and links, they’ve given me a push in the right direction! How long did the application process take? Good luck next week 😊

    • not very long:) I sent in form, they were in touch 2 weeks later and we made the appointment a few weeks later which gave me time to finish my paperwork..then it was a big last rush to finish everything, it’s good to have time (we had a whole term) to prepare and look at books etc before deciding what to use! good luckxxx

  9. Wow! You are amazing. Excellent decision yet a scary choice. I’m dreaming of the day my only son starts school just to get a break while you are inspiring us to be more connected to our children and guide their education in every way possible. Fantastic. Looking forward to reading about how it’s all working for you. Xx

  10. Corrie are you just homeschooling the twins or all of the kids together. I hope that they find it fun and rewarding just as you do.

  11. Homeschooling is a fantastic lifestyle choice. We have been doing it for 10years now and it has been the best decision we ever made. I second the Elizabeth Foss book. It is so inspiring. Also check out her Storybook year on her blog and her Serendipity site. Great book lists for history and science. Educating the Whole Hearted Child by Sally Clarkson is great too and if you havent discovered Amongst Lovely Things it’s well worth a look. Sarah’s book Teaching from Rest and the Read Aloud Revival podcasts are invaluable. Julie Bogarts Bravewriter lifestyle site is worth a browse too.
    Probably the best advice I was given was when I registered for the first time and my approved person (ex school principal) told me that if I spent 5 minutes a day ‘teaching’ my 6 yr old that would be the equivalent of a full day of school. So relax and enjoy the journey with your little ones.

    • oh I’m so glad to have found someone else who read the book, it’s just amazing. So inspiring and spot on. I was reading it and nodding my head! I’ll have a look at those other things you’ve mentioned thank you:)

  12. How exciting!! Do you think you’ll eventually homeschool them all? I am about to get our reregistration and register our 8th for the first time. Some days are hard, some days we really do get ‘nothing’ (as much as you get nothing done in a household full of farm animals and 11 people lol) but what I have come to realise is that even if we don’t get through bookwork the kids are always learning anyway. I wouldn’t swap any of it of course!!
    The wonderland of nature is an awesome book!! We started out out with lots of school based books too but I eventually found that it’s a lot easier to use books written with homeschoolers in mind so don’t be afraid to switch up your curriculum choices if you feel something isn’t right. Another great resource I find is scholastic. Being a registered homeschooler you can register an account with them and you get access to their teacher tool kit and anything you order you get 20% back which you can save up or take off your next order. We have gotten heaps of free resources this way :-)
    I clicked on your link for homeschool blogs and was surprised to see mine lol!!
    Another thing I highly recommend is a Spielgaben set. Fantastic for special needs and keeping preschoolers entertained. Expensive (was on my wish list for ages) but I am so glad I purchased one. Definitely worth the money!!
    Looking forward to following your journey Corrie!!

    • thank you, yes I think things will change over time so I’ve started following the curriculum closely and then will see how things turn out. Glad to hear your recommendation on spielgaben as it’s on the wishlist just so expensive but I think the kids would enjoy it – so long as I kept a close on it and things didn’t end up in the bottomless pits of toy tubs:)
      Knew I had t get wonderland of nature and it’s so lovely!
      thank you
      Corrie:)

  13. Good luck with the homeschooling, sounds like it will be a great environment for your children

  14. Congratulations and welcome to the fold! There are so many resources available these days, it’s a great time to homeschool. I’m sure you won’t miss the early morning school rush either 😉
    The best advice I can give a new homeschooler is:
    Go easy on yourself. Don’t set your expectations too high. The kids will be happier if you’re relaxed and enjoy the process too.
    All the best!

    • Thank you! Well I’m just glad we have almost made it through the first week:) I’m taking it day by day but so far so good and tomorrow we are off to a catholic homeschoolers group so I’m kind of lucky to have some lovely homeschool families nearby who are lovely and encouraging too. Thank you, Corrie:)

  15. Wow! I have been following your blog for a number of years now since finding you on a Google search for twin mummy bloggers. I am very excited to see that you are now homeschooling as this makes a third thing we have in common (twins and Christianity also) and I look forward to reading all your ideas! Did you attend the mum heart conference?

    • Oh thank you! I really wanted to go to the conference but hope to make it next year! I think I was a bit nervous I wouldn’t know anyone:) Do you go?

      • I normally only go once every two years when it is in QLD, but this year they held QLD’s turn in Kingscliff, so I went along anyway. It is a wonderful experience to be in a room with 150 other like-minded women. The conference is set to be held in the Hunter Valley next year, I think. I didn’t know anyone else at the conference either, but I found it a good thing – to get out of my comfort zone and learn new things from new friends. Everyone was very welcoming.

        • oh Hunter valley well I have no excuses next year! that’s wonderful that you had a great time! I think I just get a bit nervous but will go next year! so glad you let me know all of that:)

  16. Hi Corrie, I am curious as to why you are only homeschooling 2 or will you eventually home school all? What were the factors that made you leave mainstream? I have 4 kids that I would love to home school but I worry about my abilities plus how it will affect future friendships and building relationships. I really look forward to following your journey. I really find you inspiring. Xx

    • Lots of reasons to homeschool but 2 are very happy in school so we are not taking them out:) If you join a FB group for homeschoolers/prospective homeschoolers called The Educating Parents Homeschooling and Unschooling group where you will find lots of information and your questions answered. Beverley Paine’s website and books are amazing and will boost your confidence. I am keeping my twins needs and our personal reasons off the internet, thank you for understanding:)

  17. Corrie
    Wishing you all the best and praying for you as you begin your homeschool journey. If you ever have any questions, ‘sing out’ and I’ll do my best to help. We’ve been homeschooling for nearly 2 decades now and whilst it’s a challenge, it’s immensely rewarding with huge blessings.

  18. I just stumbled on your blog today. Congratulations on beginning homeschooling. It’s a scary step at first and not everything is always rosy but it is one of the best decisions we have made as a family. Big Smiles and Great Blog!

Leave a Comment

*

Optionally add an image (JPEG only)