Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Another day in the big world...

Linking up again with Stephanie's Ordinary Life Magic's Unschooling Tools. This week's theme is "About Town".

A huge advantage of homeschooling over school-schooling is that we learn not just in our "classrooms", but in the wider community as well (which is much harder to achieve when as a teacher you have 30 kids in your care - believe me!).

Well, for sure, we spend a lot of time at our desk.

Which currently is not as neat...

And dining table. And loungeroom. And kitchen. And backyard. But yanno, I try not to keep the kids locked up in the cupboard under the stairs too much...they get kinda antsy when I do that!

We live in a small-ish seaside town a few hours south of Sydney, Australia. We are very lucky, for given it's small-ish size, it has a lot to offer:

Indoor pool (and outdoor Olympic sized pool and gym)

Harbour complete with Permian fossils

Oval for dog running (and apparently, football, soccer and cricket)

Run/walk paths next to stunning beaches
More beaches....more geology, biology, physics etc

...and yet more fabulous beaches for running, swimming, playing

Not too shabby, hey?  And if you felt so inclined (which we have done at various times, or may do in the future) we also have:
  • library (and chess club)
  • gymnastics club
  • karate club
  • scouts/guides
  • tennis courts
  • ballet/jazz/tap/contemporary/hip hop dancing schools
  • physical culture club
  • drama class
  • circus school! (yes, really!)
  • golf courses
  • squash courts
  • bowling alley
  • art and craft lessons
  • music lessons
  • movie theatre
  • musical theatre groups
  • art galleries

And even everyday events like banking and shopping turn into learning opportunities:

Learning about the eye and focal lengths at the optometrist
  • local courthouse
  • policestation
  • firestation
  • Local Council offices
  • marine rescue
  • fishing co-op
  • bank
  • hospital
  • supermarket 
and any other public and/or private entity in town to see how they function and impact on the world in which we live - and they would gladly have us!

Further out of town, we have a lot of fabulous National Parks and other nearby towns that provide more fun and learning:

Rainforest walks

Rock platform walks
Bike paths
Small, privately owned, well-run zoos to the north and south of us
Fabbo playgrounds!
Homeschool group meetups

Living within a reasonably easy driving distance to Sydney means we can pop up there to visit the relo's and also to take advantage of all that a big city has to offer:


Tourist activities!

Musicals and plays

The world really is your oyster when you homeschool and we love a bit of a holiday, which always brings learning opportunities:

P.E. at the snow
Zoology at the zoo

Marine biology in the South Pacific

Botany in forests


Marine navigation

Science and maths

Maths and problem solving




Music and nature

Australian history

Chemistry and geology in caves

History and geography at old mines

Boating and oceans

Forestry and history

We just love getting out there!!

The bit I have come to love about "home" schooling, is that everything and everywhere is an opportunity for learning. Spending time as a family, doing activities that we enjoy and enrich our lives is also part of learning and education. And there is a heck of a lot less paperwork to organise an "excursion" compared to when I was teaching in schools....



  1. Lovely, Ingi. Your words makes me remember (for the umpteenth time–and each time something or someone reminds me I smile!) just how MUCH learning happens from simply Being. From being IN the world, alive in it, absorbed in it, taking part in it. Ah. And I loved your photos, and all the learning connections you made. Beautiful :)

    1. Thank you (again!) Helena. Of course, today, VB has spent the morning watching YouTube videos of video games. WG has spent the morning hunting for red rock (or something). So, it's not all wonder and light here. But it's amazing what you can learn if you open your eyes, listen carefully, and feel deeply.

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  3. Replies
    1. I was going to reply "we are very lucky" and we are, but we chose that luck. We chose to forgo the big house and the two full-time, full-on jobs and the big city. We chose a small, regional town, in a small house. We chose to homeschool and we choose now to look at the world as our oyster. We choose to be lucky :-)

  4. So much goodness going on, and oh, those beaches look glorious! Not many beaches here in Wisconsin :)

  5. Hi Ingi
    I love the photo journal of activities - looks like the perfect BOS review of learning objectives to me!
    Was there a video link in the PS? Can't seem to see it or in your music post : (
    Could well just be our Mac system limping along through holidays!


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