Tag Archives: home schooling

Iris Grace’s Mother: On Autism, Natural Play Spaces and Child Led Home Education

unspecified1Iris Grace is a seven year old little girl with a massive talent for painting. Her work has been compared to Monet and has been bought and shared by the likes of Angelina Jolie and Daniel Radcliffe.

Iris also happens to have Autism.

Professionals were ready to give up on her, writing her off and offering outdated, one size fits all techniques, but Iris’s mother, Arabella Carter-Johnson knew that there was so much beneath the surface that wasn’t being seen. She knew that if she could find the right way to communicate with this beautiful little spirit, she would help Iris to escape her anxiety and reach her true potential.

She was a mother on a mission and she wouldn’t give up on her child.

I was lucky enough to get Arabella to agree to an interview for Love Parenting, in which she shares how she made the decision to walk away from her dream of sending Iris to school and choose interest based home education instead. She discusses the affect nature has on Iris’s behaviour, and her personal coping mechanisms that helped her survive the darkest days and long sleepless nights with a child who didn’t like to switch off.

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See How We Learn: An Insight into Interest Led Learning

Little Cat turns five years old this winter, and this would be his first year in school. However, he won’t be going as we will be continuing with home education instead. We use no curriculum, we have no lesson plans and we don’t set out to teach. Instead, we enable him to find his own interests and learn all he needs to know through exploring these passions.
Learning is everywhere for the naturally curious child.

In this series I will share some of the ways he learns through life.

Today was a beautiful, sunny day and we used our long break from the hospital to head off to the woods to explore. Little Cat was in high spirits and had brought along a plastic bottle to collect some “specimens” in. He and Daddy attempted to catch several insects and we noticed the different leaves as we wandered. He was very interested in the stinging nettles which had grown nearly as tall as me in some places.

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So… Why Have You Chosen To Home Educate?

Q. You’re planning to home educate? You mean he won’t go to school at all? Wow. Do you mind if I ask why?

A. No I don’t! I am always very happy to answer any questions about home education, especially from people who seem genuinely interested. I fully admit that our path is not necessarily the “norm” in our society, and that people may not have even known it was a possibility. So let me share the many reasons that have led us to choosing the path of no school.
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Home Schooling, Unschooling, Radical Unschooling – What’s The Difference?

The options available to home educating families are wide and varied, and this can often cause confusion to people who don’t know where to start or which path would suit their family best. In this article I have outlined the three most common strains of home education, to give an idea of what each of them involves.

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