Learning at home beats formal lessons

11th April 1997 at 01:00
Research from Australia suggests that children taught by their parents at home are more than able to keep up with their conventionally educated peers. This is despite the fact that most lessons at home become more informal as time goes on.

Alan Thomas of the Northern Territory University interviewed 100 families who were asked to describe how they taught their children and how they learned.

Most admitted that although they started by imitating a school environment, the child soon resisted formal teaching and reverted to the way they had learnt as infants. But this was not glorified playing, it took the form of a day-long conversation between parent and child ranging across all academic subjects and incorporating expeditions outside the home.

These children read voraciously and topics that inspired them were often pursued for days or weeks.

"What is new is the prospect that informal and incidental learning of itself might be sufficient for a rate of intellectual development at least equal to that of school, certainly during the primary years," he told the British Psychological Society conference in Edinburgh.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now