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Home Education

Home Education
Laurie Archer

People think that home educated kids have no exposure to the outside world. As a home educated child who has never been into school, I am here to clear up that misconception.

The first misconception I would like to clear up is that we have no exposure. People think that going to school is “Going out into the world” but it couldn’t be more different. Going out into the world is going into the community, interacting with other adults, speaking up for yourself, getting along with other people younger and older than you, and being able to direct your own learning. I am 12, but I socialize with kids aged 2-16 and a lot of our learning happens when we’re taking part in projects and activities with other home edders.

The second misconception is that it is like having a weekend every day. If you are a child who goes to school, don’t think that home education is doing nothing. When we have a day at home (which isn’t as often as you might think) we get up between 7.00 and 8.00am, eat toast or something, and do some learning. The only difference is that we get to choose what we learn. For example, I started this yesterday evening. It is now the next morning. This is my learning for the morning, writing to you! Please don’t think that we get to stay in bed until 10.00am. We don’t. Some do, it’s a free world!

Another thing I have had kids say to me is “Oh, I would never get out of bed!” Oh, yes, you would: home educating is intense! Directing your own learning with only a bit of input from your Mum, Dad, or tutor when you need it is no mean feat. I get up every morning and think “What shall I do today then?”

The third and final misconception is how we are educated at home. So, if you are thinking of starting Home Education just be aware that it is a tough job and that it’s not just sitting in bed and doing nothing, it’s the opposite! In some respects we have more variety than kids who are in school.

The reason I say this is that schools have to work within the constraints of budget, but in the Home Ed world, we can mix things up!
Schools were great in the Victorian times, but life moves on. There is so much expert knowledge and information available now online that we can do it all off the internet.

I would like to finish with this: my experience of never going to school has been a great one. Everyone’s Home Ed journeys are different, but I would like to think that the sense of freedom stays the same throughout most.


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