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Learn What You Live Posts

Books about home education (AKA the big library list of everything)

So, you know my top three books to get started home educating. But there’s so many more books about home education out there that are either more specific, more general, or just didn’t make the cut. Here’s a run down of the best of the rest… Recents The Brave Learner (Julie Bogart) If you haven’t come across Brave Writer yet, go and check it out right now. Her focus is on language arts (English or Literacy to us Brits), with a sprinkling of pixie dust. She promotes a lifestyle of learning filled with delight and wonder, which generally sounds amazing…

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Psychological nutrients

I recently read – and really enjoyed – Indistractable, by Nir Eyal. One aspect that struck me was the idea of psychological nutrients. Eyal cited Dr. Richard Ryan and Dr. Edward Deci, who developed self-determination theory from research they’d done since the 70s, and their key idea that people are driven by three basic needs. Just as the human body requires three macronutrients (protein, carbohydrate and fat) to run properly, Ryan and Deci proposed that the human psyche needs three things to flourish: autonomy, competence and relatedness. When the body is starved, it elicits hunger pangs; when the psyche is…

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The new year will come, whether you’re ready for it or not.

I know, I know, the world is drowning in New Year New Start New Decade!!! messages of all the varieties. Here’s the thing… it’s just a day on the calendar. A pin on the page where someone decided ‘let’s start counting again there’. It doesn’t even quite match the obvious natural marker of the solstice.  Don’t get me wrong, the new year can be a handy point to look back and reflect, and there’s lots of good can come from that. And making plans, I’m told, helps you achieve them. Personally, I’m still stuck in the ‘but how do you…

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Having trouble figuring out your goals? Don’t sweat it

’Tis the time of year for everyone to be talking about goal setting. What do you want to be and do in the new year? What are your goals and how are you going to achieve them? And that’s kinda fun – it’s always nice to imagine all the possibilities of a brand new year. But kinda also a bit stressful. What if you just don’t know what you want to do? There’s a lot of talk out there about following your dreams and setting yourself the big goals that slightly scare you and working all out to get there.…

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What do you want to see here?

Ahem. Time for a blog reboot. I have many posts I’ve been pondering and I hereby give notice that they’re on the way! Here’s a sneak preview of some of the things I’m thinking on… 5 awesome ways to learn… that didn’t work for us What we have found works How kids learn to cook when you can’t face baking with them A series of stories of different educational paths Astronomy GCSE resources and reviews Maths resources round-up (UK focused) Book recommendations for different home education approaches Favourite blog and podcast resources Running a home education group Group activity ideas…

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Keeping tabs: UK KS3 National Curriculum links

As home educators, we don’t have to follow the National Curriculum. And mostly, we don’t. The freedom to follow a child’s individual interests is one of the great advantages of home educating, whereas the National Curriculum is designed to be a best attempt to cover the needs of all the hundreds of thousands of children that pass through LA-maintained schools every year. It’s just not going to be the best fit for any particular one of those children; that’s not its job. (Not that you’ll get the best fit home educating either; perfect simply isn’t attainable. But I’ve reckon you’ve…

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When you’re in the midst of chaos and it feels like you’re failing everyone

Sometimes it’s the crazy half hour before dinner – when you’re already running late, and your cranky toddler Won’t Stop Shouting, the baby missed a nap, and your older one just smashed a glass of the reddest smoothie you’ve ever seen all over the kitchen. Sometimes it’s when you thought you’d had a great day, then without warning you find a minor disagreement over dinner turns into your tweens both in the midst of a major meltdown because of ongoing issues between them and you can’t talk to one without the other starting up the fight again. Sometimes it’s a…

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