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Maine parents schooling at home

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    Lea Verrill home-schools daughter Clara in North Yarmouth. "No one has a more vested interest," Verrill said of her and her husband.

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    Clara Verrill, 12, relaxes with her tablet and dog, Misty, during a break in between subjects at home in North Yarmouth. Jill Brady/Staff Photographer

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    Emma Verrill of North Yarmouth takes a break between studies to steal kisses from her dog Misty. "Every kid is different," says her mom, Lea Verrill. "The beauty of homeschooling is that it is so fluid."

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    Etain Brown gives her cat Flora a hug Friday at home in Old Orchard Beach. Etain says she talks to her friends about traditional school, but she doesn't feel she's missing anything by not being there.

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    Fifteen-year-old Etain Brown feeds chickens in her family's yard in Old Orchard Beach on Friday. For unschoolers like the Brown family, everything in life offers lessons. "Our children's lives are their own," says Etain's mom, Wendy Brown, "and it's our job to give them as many experiences as we can."

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    Clara Verrill, 12, looks to her dad, Steve, while working out a math problem at their home in North Yarmouth. "Why do we home-school?" asks Steve Verrill's wife, Lea. "I look at it as raising healthy, responsible, caring adults."

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    Homeschoolers, from left, Etain Brown, 15, Aine Templeton, 9, and Tehya Brown 13, work on various activities at the kitchen table as Brian Templeton plays bass guitar at the Browns' home Friday. "I call it (do-it-yourself) education," said Brian Templeton's wife, Beth.

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