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THAT HOMESCHOOL LIFE CHATS WITH...KYLIE RAYNER

Today it is my pleasure to welcome to That Homeschool Life's 'A Chat With' series, Kylie Rayner from THAT HOMESCHOOL SWEET SPOT.



Lusi:

How many kids do you have? Which area are you living in? How long have you been homeschooling?


Kylie:

I’m Kylie, from The Homeschool Sweet Spot, a mother of 3 children who are currently 20, 17 and 13. We live in the sunny state of Queensland and began our homeschooling journey part way through 2007. As of writing this we are currently in our 15th year of home education.


Lusi:

Can you tell us why you began homeschooling?


Kylie:

This is quite a long winded story as there wasn’t any real one reason, but many smaller reasons that all combined, added up to this life changing choice for us. In a nutshell, my eldest child went off to Prep here in Queensland and nothing about that experience felt right. Everything inside me was screaming that this was wrong, wrong, wrong! I decided to remove him for the remainder of that year and we’ve never looked back.


Lusi:

How is the reality of homeschooling different to the idea that you originally had of homeschooling before you started?


Kylie:

I’m not sure that the reality is different, it’s just that as a young mum, brand new to homeschooling, with all of these dreams and ideals I had swirling inside my heart and head, I never truly considered the longevity of homeschooling and the fact that I would be in this homeschool thing much longer than any of my children were ever going to be. I knew once I’d made the decision that jumping in and out of school was not going to be an option for me and whilst I understood that I had twenty years ahead of me I don’t think I fully grasped exactly what that meant. (Me too Kylie! - Lusi x)


Lusi:

Have you had support or opposition from family, friends, your community? How has this affected you?


Kylie:

I feel I have been so very lucky in regards to opposition. When we first raised the topic of homeschooling family members did have some concerns of course. However I always tried to present myself as confidently as I could. When one is confident in one's choices then those around you tend to not have much to say on the matter. In regards to strangers out in the community, I have had far more positive remarks than negative. Many of them looking directly at my kids and telling them how lucky they are and what a super awesome mum they have. That’s pretty cool to hear! I don’t engage with negative remarks from strangers at all. If they are genuinely interested in home education they will ask the appropriate questions.


Lusi:

How do you look after yourself as a homeschooling parent? What self care measures do you put in place?


Kylie:

I actually responded to this question on my YouTube channel because this has been very difficult for me over the years. I subconsciously held the belief that to be a good mother we needed to put everyone ahead of ourselves. It took me many years to understand the importance of looking after myself and so I do try to do better these days with things like book club, reading a lot, exercise, and simply spending time on my own. Although I totally understand that many of these things are next to impossible when you have a tribe of you long children at your feet. - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0BZ4TTf13XI


Lusi:

What do you love most about homeschooling? What do you find hard?


Kylie:

There are too many things to list here because truly there is so much to love. But at the top of my list is the privilege I’ve had of being with my kids daily. I know that in this day and age that’s actually very rare and I will never lose sight of how very blessed I have been to have this experience. The thing I find the most difficult is finding time for my own endeavours. I have been very careful over the years to ensure that these things did not take away my focus from my children but it would be oh so lovely to have one full day a week where I could pursue my interests.


Lusi:

What can you not live without as a homeschooling parent?


Kylie:

Community would be the one big thing I could not live without. Ever! There is no way I could ever homeschool in isolation. Having people around us is of the utmost importance to me.


Lusi:

Best advice for new homeschoolers?


Kylie:

The best advice I have for new homeschoolers is to deschool* yourself, and to spend as much time as necessary figuring out your why? Why exactly are you home educating and what do you hope to achieve by home educating. Take the time to create a solid mission statement. This will help you to filter out the noise of the community that can at times get awfully loud, pulling you in all manner of directions. I also strongly recommend to follow experienced people, that align with your educational philosophies and be a part of groups that empower and lift you up. These things may seem insignificant but over many years they are a very powerful piece of the puzzle.


Lusi:

Kylie, thank you so much for sharing with us. It is wonderful to hear from someone with such passion for homeschooling, family and who has given much into the Australian homeschooling community. Where can others continue to connect with you please?


Kylie:

My YouTube Channel, where I share all manner of things from curriculum flip throughs, day in our life videos, hints and tips I have gleaned over the years and more - https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCu-LI95N8dyTaCo3Wcfe8kQ



Thank you once again Kylie for joining us here at That Homeschool Life. I'm sure so many people will appreciate reading what you have to share here and on your YouTube channel and website too.


(Look at these awesome photos of learning and creativity! Love it so much!

NB from Lusi: *Deschooling is the process of adjusting once a child who has once been at school returns home and really is a time through which parents and caregivers question their own ideas about traditional modes of education. If you are interested in a deschooling course, you might like to check out this one HERE.


Double NB: Would you like to be part of our series? I love to hear from all kinds of people homeschooling whether you've been at it for years or are just beginning. Please send me an email here: hello.thathomeschoollife@gmail.com

Thanks again Kylie for playing along. Lusi x


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Nodding away here, I totally GET this journey. Long term homeschoolers, we understand! This - But at the top of my list is the privilege I’ve had of being with my kids daily. - Yep, yep, yep!!

and somehow I missed that my old friend Kylie has a new blog! I think I've been asleep.

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