Tips for home schooling your children when living as an expat

Aside from concerning yourself with your Australian tax return while you’re living as an expat overseas, you may also need to think about school for your children. A large number of Australian expats choose to home school their children when they move overseas. It helps them to avoid paying large sums for international schooling and ensures their children’s curriculum isn’t disrupted too much following a move.

We’ve come up with some tips to help you start along the path of home schooling.

1. Choose a home school curriculum that’s accredited

You need to ensure the curriculum you choose for your children is recognised by outside establishments so if your children plan to further their studies at university they will easily be able to do so. For example, try the Home Education Association of Australia as a recognised curriculum to follow.

2. Give your children ample opportunities

Make sure your child doesn’t become isolated through the home schooling process by linking with other expats who are home schooling their children in your area. Organise activities and meet ups so your children have the chance to make friends and develop their social skills. Sports clubs and art classes are two ideas that work well.

3. Understand the teaching process

As your child’s teacher you need to understand that you might not know everything you want to teach them. There will most likely be some subjects where your knowledge is lacking so consider hiring tutors to help you out. If you don’t know how to solve some mathematics problems, rather than struggling over it, hire an expert to help. Expat forums and local English newspapers are a good place to start on the search for a tutor.

4. Create a schedule and stick to it

You need to take home schooling seriously to keep your children motivated. If your children were previously educated in a traditional school setting, they might need some time to adjust to the new way of learning. Be patient and establish a routine. Make sure you stick to the schedule so your child knows what to expect. Give them encouragement and involve them in decision processes.

5. Make sure you are committed

Your children will learn by example so take the time to plan out your classes and get organised. Make sure you don’t decide to skip a day of school on a whim and be prepared to commit 100% to home schooling.

At times home schooling may make you feel stressed, but with enough commitment and hard work, you will succeed in giving your children a great education. And if you get stuck, seek out other home school teachers in your local area for advice.

Shane Macfarlane
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Shane Macfarlane

CEO & Founder at Expat Tax Services
Shane's an Australian Chartered Accountant and Australian expat tax specialist who's also an expat himself (based in Asia).Shane's passionate about tax and legitimate tax minimisation, particularly as it relates to Australian expats who are often subject to high rates of tax back home in Australia.Beyond tax and accounting, Shane's an entrepreneur, having devised, created and founded a successful accounting startup, Fifo Workpapers (acquired by accounting software giant, Intuit inc. in 2013)

In short Shane's a tax and software techno-geek, who recognised that Australian expats were unable to obtain the specialist advice and quality service, that they needed from their accountants. Accordingly, Shane founded Expat Tax Services to provide Australian expats with access to specialist, quality advice at fair and reasonable prices (no hourly rates, fees quoted upfront with unlimited support included) . . . receive the support and advice you need without having to take second-mortgage to pay your accountant's bill! Speak to Shane & the team today.
Shane Macfarlane
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