HOMESCHOOLING SUPPORT RESOURCE

STEP 1: WHERE TO START AND WHAT TO DO?

  • BREATHE

  • It’s ok

  • You are not alone

  • You are supported

  • It doesn’t need to be a ‘forever decision’, it could be a trial period

  • There is no right or wrong

 

STEP 2: UNROLLING MY CHILD

There are various ways to remove a child from compulsory education

  • If your child has never been to school, there is no need to do anything.

  • Holiday:
    Your child can be removed for 10 consecutive days without paperwork or approval – you can book a holiday in the ‘system’ to allow for breathing space

  • Temporary Exemption Form in Queensland

– Principal Authority (State School) – you can complete an exemption form (which can also be obtained from school) requesting dates that you would like your child to be absent from school. This could be for a period of months and is at the discretion of the principal. Reasons could be that you are travelling.

If this is form is refused, it can be reviewed internally by the Dept of Education
– Principal Authority (Non-state School) – The Principal has the authority to approve exemptions up to 110 days in a calendar year

  • ‘Provisional Only’ Register for Home Education in Queensland

Up to 60 days (more breathing space).
You can send an email to the Home Education Unit of The Department of Education (with child’s birth certificate) to un-enroll your child from school.
You will automatically be granted 60 days provisional registration, without needing an educational plan.

Before the end of the 60 days, you will need to apply for full registration.

You must also send a letter to school to let them know – and send a copy of the letter to the Home Education Unit too.

  • Full Registration for Home Education in Queensland

Once you have been granted ‘provisional only’ registration, you have and additional 28 days to apply for full registration and develop an educational plan, which needs to be included with registration. The registration lasts for 12 months. A learning plan is needed for each child and is not required every year – and it is also not set in stone. It is not required to follow any curriculum/grade level and certainly no something you will be measure against.

Please don’t feel that you are going to be rejected if your plan is not quite right, they will simply ask you for more information. They just want to know that you have considered your child’s needs and have considered the options. Educational Plans can include; after school activities, hobbies, sports, cooking and life skills, travel, community classes, clubs and many more. At the end of the first year, there is a requirement to give a written report on the child’s educational progress. The report must be given at least 2 months, but not more than 3 months, prior to the anniversary of the child’s registration. This can be demonstrated by including annotated samples of the child’s work and an overview of the learning taken, in relation to the educational goals of the child. The is a video on how to prepare your annual report to show you how it’s done.

Again, don’t worry if the annual report doesn’t match the initial plan, things can change, and you never need to show or prove where your children are at. There is a government payment for Isolated Children (AICS) who are geographically isolated, they have a special education need, they have no reasonable access to school, or they have medical reasons such as anxiety or psychological grounds. Read more.
There is also a FairPlay Voucher which can be used for recreation, sports and arts.

There is also a Textbook and Resource Allowance, for years 7-12, which is a State Government allowance, that provides financial assistance to parents of full and part-time secondary students to offset the cost of education.

Whatever ‘method’ or ‘style’ of learning you choose, there must be an educational plan submitted with the registration form – these come in three formats: Australian Curriculum Learning, Goal-directed Learning & Thematic Learning.

Don’t worry about this, as your style of learning may change over the year – it is just a ‘proposal’ or ‘plan of action’ to send to the department to set your intention.

They also don’t want to see long or detailed plans, the space provided is all they need – they don’t need attachments. Volunteers can check plans before they are submitted.

Australian Curriculum Learning (ACARA) – Is the Department of Education’s official way of learning – focusing on disciplinary knowledge and skills in the eight learning areas of the curriculum: English, Mathematics, Science, Health and Physical Education, Humanities and Social Sciences, The Arts, Technologies, and Languages. Please find a  template with  completed example

Goal-directed Learning – Students use technology tools to set goals, plan activities, monitor progress, and evaluate results rather than simply completing assignments without reflection. Please find a template with completed example

Thematic Learning – A way of teaching and learning where many areas of the curriculum are connected and integrated within a theme. It is a way to integrate the curriculum by selecting a theme the students are familiar with and material can be taught, with the student drawing connections with the information being taught and the students own, previous knowledge. Please find a template with completed example

Other States Registration

 

STEP 3: WHAT DO I DO NEXT?

There are an abundance of possibilities and opportunities, which can seem daunting, but this is what makes Home Education so good – as you can adapt to the specific needs of your child, as it is so flexible.
It is trial and error to begin with, as you move at the pace of your child, but there is no need to rush them through anything, you meet and support them where they are at.

Also, don’t forget that children are learning all the time – we are conditioned to believe that education and learning looks like school, but self-directed learning and conversational learning are so important too, as they are targeted, relevant and most likely to be retained. Home Education is intertwined with parenting and just an extension of everyday life. Children learn faster with one-on-one help and by following their interests, so many families average an hour a day of formal learning.
Parents are facilitators and guides – which is no different to what we have been doing their whole lives, but we can also use mentors, online courses, tutors and activity groups. There are even more exciting options in the pipeline too – the world is changing so much and new education platforms will be launched soon.
Home Educators are not expected to follow the curriculum, or to follow a school timetable (although you can if you want to) In fact, Home Education, quite often, looks nothing like school. There are no boxes to tick and no exams – all you need to get started is a library card, an internet connection, and a printer, there so many low cost or free resources. It can mean something different for every family.
You can research yourself or you can pay memberships to organisations to gain support.
    
Many, many Home Ed parents have a job – so education can take place at any time or place to fit around your schedule if necessary.

As parents, you are legally responsible for ensuring your child receives a full-time education suitable to their age, ability, aptitude, and any special needs they may have.

Firstly, it would be good to do some brainstorming (and include your child in this process)

  • Do I just want to remove my child from school and think of options later?

  • What are my priorities?

  • What opportunities are available to me already, in my own community or the Home Ed
      Community?

  • What is best for my family and my child?

  • How does my child learn best?

  • Do I want to instill a certain value system?

  • Do I want a specific educational philosophy?

  • Do I have certain educational goals that I want my child(ren) to accomplish?

  • Are there personal, financial, or medical circumstances that could affect how I homeschool?

  • Do I prefer to follow a single homeschool style or am I comfortable mixing and matching?

  • Does my child prefer a structured approach? Semi-structured? Formal? Relaxed?

Whatever you decide, however you feel, there is an approach to suit all. There is no right or wrong. Breathe!

STEP 4: WHAT OPTIONS DO I HAVE?


Try different things and work out what’s best. Some children like online, some like kinetic learning, some love worksheets, or books. All children are different. Having the freedom to adapt is awesome. There is no limitation to the flexibility you have. Find out what type of learner your child is by taking a quiz.

Remember that it might be a good idea to ‘de-school’ your children first. There is a transition period from school education to Home Education, used for children who have recently left a formal school environment. It is important to think beyond curriculum! Letting go of school can take a month for every year your child has been in school. Start slowly. Start with a short time each day.

The range of options below is a general overview of what is available, to keep it manageable and not to create further overwhelm – once you feel out what you think will work for you, the information available is astonishing and there are literally thousands of resource options.

Before you decide, you could join a few local Home Ed groups to communicate with other parents and get some support, advice, and ideas. Asking questions to current Home Educators is such an important thing to do to ease the stress.

GOOD AND THE BEAUTIFUL

They are a faith-based learning and work on the premise that the more knowledge and wisdom a person gains, the more solid his or her faith becomes. These institutions are not afraid of the sciences, but rather count on the sciences to help complete the puzzle of knowledge. A worldview that is selflessness, acceptance, and love for their fellow man.  www.goodandbeautiful.com

JUBILEE CHRISTIAN COLLEGE

They are an independent Christian School located in Atherton, Far North Qld, about 80km inland from Cairns.  Their Distance Education catchment is the entire State of Qld and offer programs for P-12. They place a high value on ensuring students achieve sound literacy and numeracy skills within their capabilities, which provides the foundation for all future learning and educational engagement. The College supports and upholds Christian values, which are outlined in our Statement of Faith, Core Values and the various policies & practices that are implemented each day throughout all areas of the College. They are owned and operated by Jubilee Christian College Ltd. and a member of Independent Schools Queensland and Christian Schools Australia. https://www.jubileecc.qld.edu.au/about-us

 

AUSTRALIAN CHRISTIAN HOME SCHOOLING

Australian Christian Home Schooling (ACHS) is the oldest and largest provider of home-schooling support in Australia. With over three decades of experience, we support hundreds of families across Australia and overseas. They provide both Distance Education and Home-Schooling options: https://www.achs.edu.au/

 

CHARLOTTE MASON

CM who lived from 1842-1923 promoted ‘living books’, that make subjects come alive, rather than dry, factual textbooks. Living books are literature rich and are usually written by one person who has a passion for that subject (both fiction and non-fiction). The core belief is that children deserve to be respected and learn best in real-life situations and those factual textbooks insulted a child’s intelligence.  Short lessons are recommended for young children, growing longer as the child matures. Nature study, music and journaling are an integral part of this type of education  www.simplycharlottemason.com

 

MOORE FORMULA

The philosophical principles behind the Moore educational formula include balancing service, study, and work in the lives of children. The formula according to the Moore Foundation states: ”Focus on kids’ interests and needs; be an example in consistency, curiosity, and patience. Live with them!”  www.moorehomeschooling.com

 

FAITH CHRISTIAN SCHOOL OF DISTANCE EDUCATION

Their mission is to help students to fulfil their God-given potential. This acknowledges the importance of allowing academic, social, and spiritual opportunities to grow and develop. They have been operational since 2012 and has grown to 1500 students from P-12 since. They view their role as a school of distance education as follows: to ensure students have access to clear programs, teaching support from qualified teachers, and resources to achieve their goals, as well as God’s plan for their lives.  https://www.faithcsde.com/

 

CO-OP/LOCAL HOMESCHOOL GROUP

They are a group of families who meet and work cooperatively to achieve common goals. Activities and classes are led by parents, who share their skills, or the parents may collectively pay for teachers and activity leaders. They may meet other groups for art, nature studies, science experiments and, they go on field trips etc. These groups can be found on Facebook. For the Gympie groups you can find them at Gympie Homeschool Community and Gympie Homeschool (and surrounds) or alternatively for different area’s search:  Home Education in (your town/suburb)

 

TUTOR CENTRES

There are tutor centers in various locations where families can access support from teachers to buffer students’ academic, social and offer other educational supports. These will vary from location to location. For the Gympie and Mary Valley area, Olive Valley Learning Centre is an option.

 

OLIVE VALLEY LEARNING CENTRE

Olive Valley Learning Centre is a Christ-centred distance education and home school support Centre, offering holistic educational activities and tutoring for Prep to Year 12 students. Our vision is to raise disciples in Christ whilst supporting families through their distance education or home school journey. We value a child-centred, holistic, and safe environment for all children. These values guide the way in which we support our families and design the learning space. https://olivevalley.org.au/

 

PRIVATE TUTORING

Private tutoring is often subject based offered virtually anywhere both in person and online. These can be accessed through local Facebook information groups, asking local schools or reaching online.


STANDARD CURRICULUM/TRADITIONAL HOMESCHOOLING/SCHOOL-AT-HOME

It is more formal style and what most parents think of when they think of home education. The philosophy resembles a conventional classroom education with timetabled lessons and a curriculum that is similar or identical to school. Packaged, all in one curriculum can be bought if needed. Many parents feel comfortable with this to begin with – as it is familiar, and they find that the curriculum can be covered in half a day or less. A curriculum can be bought from different suppliers, but here is an example of. the Standard Education Dept Curriculum for Year 1-10;  Year 1, Year 2Year 3, Year 4, Year 5,  Year 6, Year 7, Year 8, Year 9, Year 10 Curriculum Resources 

 

DISTANCE EDUCATION/EDUCATIONAL PACKAGES

It tends to replicate 6 hours of school, delivered online. There are exams, tests, assignments, and assessments. Full support is given from teachers for a fee in private schools, but some public schools have a distance learning program. Here is a list of all providers by state.


UNIT STUDY APPROACH

They’re based around a specific topic or theme, called a ‘unit study’. It involves integrating various subjects such as history, science, English, arts into a dedicated study of a theme such as human body, weather, space etc. so education is matched to your child’s interests. The unit study home school method is a mastery-based approach to learning that incorporates multiple subject areas to learn about a specific theme or topic www.time4learning.com


WILD SCHOOLING

It is nature-based learning or learning through exposure to nature and nature-based activities, which occurs in natural settings and where elements of nature have been brought into built environments, such as plants, animals, and water. Find out more here

 

EXPERIENTIAL/JOURNEY SCHOOLING

It is an educational movement that recognizes that a student can receive education from experiencing and interacting with the world around them. This often involves travelling together and using the journeys to enhance the children’s education. Find out more here.


ROADSCHOOLING/HOMESCHOOLING ON THE ROAD

You can rest assured that your child will cover the full curriculum but also have the flexibility that travelling requires. You have three options – maintaining enrolment at school, distance education or home schooling. Find out more here.

 

UNSCHOOLING/AUTONOMOUS/NATURAL LEARNING

This education works as a mindset, or way of thinking in which life itself is viewed as educational. The world becomes the classroom. it is when the child leads their own learning, facilitated by parents. It is unstructured and informal, with no set curriculum and the children have lessons based on what they are interested in. The choices are in the child’s hands. Read  what a typical day looks like:

 

DIY/MAKE YOUR OWN HOMESCHOOLING

A blend of all the above! You don’t need to choose any style or method. A plan can    be developed around child’s learning needs, mixing, and matching multiple approaches rather than a single style, taking different parts of methods and philosophies to form your own style. Individualized curriculums can be created based on gifted children, special needs, ADHD or anything or everything you can imagine! You can find multiple templates, plans and how a typical week can look, even questionnaires on what style suits you (and your child!) at the telegram group: https://t.me/+cBIUMX2LH70wYzY1

 

UNIVERSITY/TAFE

Home Educated children have attended every University in Australia. Some enter via TAFE, Open Universities or Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL), there are many pathway options. https://clueylearning.com.au/en/homeschooling-australia/homeschoolers-university-tafe-tertiary-education/

 

MONTESSORI

Dr Maria Montessori (1870-1952) noticed that children learn well when given the freedom to explore. She said that learning is a natural, self-directed process which follows fundamental laws of nature – so this method is child led, guided, hands on, and involves sensory activities, movement, and the environment. It allows for children to follow their inner guidance for self- directed learning with a carefully constructed learning environment. The parents’ role is to provide a stimulating environment rather than controlling or directing the child’s learning, the involvement of the parent is reduced to least amount as possible so as not to interfere with the child’s own free learning though experimentation.

 

HELPFUL WEBSITES, VIDEOS AND CONTACTS:

 

EDUCATION WEBSITES:

 

RESOURCES BY SUBJECT & MORE:

All-round

Early Learning

English

Math

Science

Arts

Digital Tech

Languages

Mental Health and Mindfulness

Music

Humanities and Social Science

Outdoor Play

 

BOOKS

 

SOCIAL MEDIA