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Examples of home ed life

We are sometimes asked ‘How do I know what to teach?’ or ‘How do I know what they should be learning?’
The below are just a few examples of how home education can work. Remember you legally must provide an education suitable to your individual child.

A schedule might work for some, but not others, child led learning may not always work for each child, and as your child ages the education should evolve.

There are no rules on what your child should be learning or how they should learn it, beyond it being a full time education suitable to your child. No one is going to tell you what your child must be learning, or how, no one is going to be providing work or learning material, you are now fully responsible for researching different ways of home educating and providing what your child needs. Read the rest of our website to fully understand what that means.

NOTE: any resource examples are just that, there are others out there and we are not linked to any we include.

ALSO NOTE: these are not home ed provision and resource reports for the LA, they are just a small example of what home ed can look like.

Example One

Kirk is 12 and has always been home educated. He spent most of his young childhood at home ed groups and outings, he loves climbing trees and recently started venturing out on his own to the skate park with friends. He wakes up when he is ready, quite often this is around lunch time. He has plans to sit a couple of GCSE/IGCSEs starting when he is 14 as he wants to go to college at 16. He will wake up and game for an hour or so. He then will sit to his computer and uses Oak Academy, along with CGP workbooks to learn the maths GCSE content for the OCR exam board. He will also use the Catherine Mooney book to learn the English Language IGCSE Cambridge syllabus, he is considering some tutor sessions to grasp some of the areas he is struggling in. He does 2 hours on these and then gets some food, he has started experimenting in the kitchen so can often be in there for 2 hours making something new. He will then sit with one of his parents to watch a documentary, often history or wildlife, and then have a long conversation with his parent, or spend an hour or so googling things he has seen and would like answers to. Later in the evening when everyone else is asleep he reads, he is considering an English Literature exam but isn’t sure, but as preparation he is reading a text that is common across most exam boards, A Christmas Carol. One afternoon a week he goes to a science club home ed group specifically for teens, he gets to take part in experiments and learn new information. The club is run by a home ed parent who used to be a science teacher. He also goes to an ice skating home ed group. Once day a week he goes to the allotment with his grandad and learns all about growing fruit and veg.

Example two

Babette is 7, she was deregistered from school 6 months ago, no major event or reason, she just wasn’t fully happy. Babette loves playing with dolls and her toy kitchen, she has made menus for her cousins to order play food when they come to play once a week. She has written shopping lists, and learned about registering baby births as she went to Build A Bear and asked about the certificates. Her writing skills are not quite age appropriate as she struggles to hold a pen properly, so mum spends half an hour each day doing fun drawing and writing challenges to help her improve this skill. She loves spelling words and with mum’s help she has labelled many things in the house. She doesn’t like reading books, but can and does read the subtitles on TV and uses story cubes to tell stories to her dolls or mum. Babette goes to a home ed swim group once a week, and has found one child that they will play with, they do not like loud groups so one to one meet ups at home or the park are a regular occurrence. Babette has been learning fractions using wooden fraction toys. She is beginning to enjoy Minecraft and plays it with her dad who explains about the metals and different materials. Babette and her aunty recently did a science experiment of random things around the house, dropping them in to a bath of water to see if they float or swim.

Example three.

Luke is 9, he was deregistered a year ago having had a traumatic time in school, he was badly bullied and left school despising anything that looked like learning. He has been deschooling for a year and still cries at the mention of learning. He has been enjoying going to gymnastics, which he did before being deregistered, He has even, with his mum’s help, talked the gymnastics club to open one day a week for a home ed group, he sits on the door at each session, takes people’s money, writes their name down, and the parents email address. At the end of the session he adds up all the money. He helps clean and tidy the gym afterwards. He made paper posters and helped the gym create an online poster to advertise the group via social media and email. He is a capable reader, but will only do it secretly in bed, mum will bring the book into conversation at random points and purposely make a mistake when talking about, which Luke usually picks up and corrects her, mum knows he is understanding the story. He is an avid story teller and recently allowed his mum to write a story down so he could read it to his grandad over video call. Luke thinks he would like to work with cars, so he watches a lot of YouTube mechanics videos, and can explain how various types of engine work. Most of Luke’s learning happens when he doesn’t realise it.

Example four

Rory is 16, it’s January and they do not want to go back to school, it should be GCSE exams time in a few months and the thought of exams brings them out in a rash and panic attacks, school do not care, they have refused to allow Rory to drop any subjects and demanded they will sit all 9 subjects. Rory can’t do it and is now unable to get out of bed to go to school. Rory wants to learn, but at their own pace. So they have decided to home educate. Rory will study 5 GCSE and IGCSE subjects, maths, English language, double science and computer science. But will take them as an external candidate in what would be their year 12 and 13. They do not know what they want to do after that, but they will be 18 and think they may stay home ed another year and learn the A-level syllabus for computer science (but not do the exam), to then start an Open University degree aged 19.

Example five

Suki is 11, was deregistered age 6, partly due to being autistic and struggling to conform to the nonsensical rules of sitting straight and not asking questions, but partly because the routine in school would often change, this would cause them to shut down and be unable to function. Dad started home education thinking he had to recreate school at home, he set a timetable and lesson plans, but because Suki often had a lot of questions the timetable was difficult to stick to, so would then cause Suki to become upset. Dad, realising school at home was not a legal requirement and not wanting to squash Suki’s passion, changed their timetable. Morning wake up would happen at the same time every day, Suki always wakes before anyone else and will read until Dad’s alarm goes off at 8. Breakfast and conversation next. then at 10 when the house has been given a quick tidy/clean it is ‘learning time’, mornings are always maths or science related and follow the CGP workbooks, but can often branch off to Youtube or questions. Then lunch and some TV. Afternoons are either Literacy, history or geography and with an option for all 3 Suki can choose which or all of them. This loose schedule works well for Suki, there are afternoons for craft, and when there are days out planned Suki is becoming more and more able to step out of their routine, especially when it is a to visit a museum. Suki is extremely chatty when it comes to museum staff, but is not yet able to speak to a shop worker or the postperson for example.

Example six

Taylor has been home educated since he was 15, he couldn’t cope in school due to various SEN, he likes learning and does some semi-formal book and website work most afternoons, his mornings are usually spent chilling in bed on his phone, but as he likes this independent learning style he is known to pick up a book at a weekend too. He doesn’t follow any particular routine, he learns whatever takes his fancy. But over the last two years he has learned the majority of the Maths GCSE syllabus and read most of the history GCSE content. He enjoys the English Language quixzes on BBC Bitesize and has now finished them all. He is very much into Dungeons and Dragons and goes to a games cafe one evening a week, he plays online most evenings. He is dungeon master for one game, this involves strategic planning and organisation. Due to his SEN he doesn’t feel like he would cope with the exam environment so has decided not to do GCSE exams or A-Levels, and will instead start an Open University degree aged 17 instead. His parents know this means losing child benefit etc for him as this is considered advanced learning, but they will find a way to manage as it is really what is best for Taylor. College at 14 or 16 was also ruled out as the classroom environment doesn’t suit Taylor.

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