REAL Circle of Home Ed Families

Radical Empathy, Authentic Listening

As you may know, I'm a home educating mum of two lovely little humans. I love home educating - it suits us down to the ground - and I know that it's soooo much easier to maintain the confidence to keep doing what we're doing when I'm surrounded by community and can chat about the joys and challenges with people who get it. I am delighted to offer a space where we can all do just that! Read on to find out more.

What is the REAL Circle of Home Ed Families?

It's a group where we can talk about life as a home ed family- the joys and challenges and everything in between. We drink a cuppa, eat traybake and hold space for each other to talk about whatever is on our mind or in our heart. It's a non-judgemental, supportive atmosphere where all home ed families are included, accepted and heard. 

The Circle is consent based - you only need to share if you feel like it, and only share what you want to. We also encourage you to consider having the courage to be a little vulnerable if you feel able, as you may get more from the circle that way, but we understand it's a personal choice and we are happy for you to find the balance of comfort and courage that feels right for you.

You will be a part of a Circle of home ed families who hold space for each other, respect each other and raise each other up. We're building a community here, we aren't meant to do this on our own.

Who is it for?

It's for parents who have chosen to home educate their children. Primarily, it's for the parents to hold space for each other, but we will invite the children to share if they would like to as well. 

When is it?

It's 10am-12pm once a month. Check the booking form for dates. 

Where is it?

REAL Circles are held in The Log Cabin in my garden in Soham. Click here to find out more about the venue. 

How much is each ticket for the Circle?

Tickets are £10 per family for one parent attending, or £16 per family for two parents attending. Children are included in the price.

If finances are a barrier, you can pay whatever feels comfortable (from zero pounds upwards!) and the rest of the ticket cost can come from the Random Act Of Kindness (RAOK) fund.

Equally, if you'd be happy to pay a bit more than the ticket cost to reflect your fortunate circumstances, you would be helping another family to be able to attend at a price that is right for them - your Random Act Of Kindness for the day! See the Random Act Of Kindness page for more details about the RAOK fund.

How do I book and pay?

Fill out the booking form here. You can pay by bank transfer or debit card, but if you need an alternative payment method, just ask. Details are in the booking form. 

What happens in the Circle?

After arriving and settling in with a cuppa, there are four parts of the Circle:

During the whole thing we drink a cuppa or three, eat traybake, look after our children, nip to loo anytime and generally keep ourselves comfortable!

There are sometimes a few tears when sharing about something that feels hard, as it's a safe space where you can do that, there's always loads of solidarity and plenty of laughter as we all just 'get it'!

You can ask the group any questions that are on your mind, knowing that no-one will judge you or tell you what to do, because I make it clear that you know your family best. Instead of advice, you'll hear stories, experiences and information from myself and others. You don't have to have a question to come along, it's all about having the opportunity to connect with others and be part of a group. 

How do I focus on the Circle whilst looking after my little one?

We try our best to meet our own needs and our children's needs and that is good enough! Most of us (including me!) will be parenting at the same time, so we know we won't have undivided attention and that's ok. 

We all find different ways to make it work for us and our little ones, whether that's snacks or toys or whatever might entertain them. It's really healthy for us to find a way to meet our own need for connection, it keeps us on an even kilter and helps us to be the parent we want to be. It's also really heartwarming to be around other parents looking after their little ones and to see the little ones playing with or near each other. This is a mini version of 'the village'!

How many people will be there?

There are a maximum of eight parent spaces available for each Circle (although I may stop at a lower number if there are several children per family, due to space available in the Log Cabin), but the number attending varies Circle to Circle. A minimum of three attendees is required in order for the Circle to run.

What if I need to cancel my place?

Places are limited, so if you need to cancel, I would appreciate you letting me know as soon as circumstances change, so that I can offer your space to someone else.

1. If you cancel more than 48hrs before the circle, you may transfer your ticket to a future REAL circle or find a friend to take your place. The onus is on you to look out for future dates and rebook.

2. If you cancel within 48hrs of the circle, transfers to a future circle may be offered in exceptional circumstances only. If you can find a friend to take your place your ticket can be used by them instead - you must let me know. They will need to fill out the booking form before the circle.

3. If you don’t show up and haven’t told me you’re not coming, no refunds or transfers will be offered.

If I cancel for any reason, I will offer you a refund or the option to transfer your ticket if you prefer.

Is there an online version?

We have a WhatsApp group for anyone who has attended the REAL Circle of Home Ed Families which you can join once you've been to the circle, so you can carry on connecting with and benefiting from the wealth of experiences within the group in between circles.

This is something I would consider doing if there was enough interest, so if you're interested, please let me know.