Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Help! I'm Homeschooling Multiple Ages

Help! I'm Homeschooling Multiple Ages

Written by Jessica

Our homeschool days involve a lot of chatting, moving around, and doing things hands-on. There are definitely peaceful times of quietly working, but we don’t do a lot of silent and sitting-still here. While waiting for their turn to do a lesson with me or for me to check over their work, I don’t mind, and in fact encourage, my children to move around, to play quietly, and to pursue activities of interest to them. 

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And that works really well most of the time: looking out the window, bird book in hand, daydreaming….finishing a drawing started earlier that morning….picking up a book and curling up to read…piecing together a puzzle…designing a Lego creation

Yep, it works really well…except when it doesn’t. Sometimes the activity of choice isn’t quiet. Sometimes the activity becomes a distraction to that child and to everyone else. 

Monday, October 17, 2016

What Comes After Homeschooling: A Graduate's Perspective

What Comes After Homeschooling: a graduate's perspective

Written by Abbey Lovett

I never once sat in a classroom, I never once studied for midterms, I never rode on a school bus, there was no headmaster, no school nurse, and no bell that rang to let me know I was done learning.

I was homeschooled. For 12 years of my life my mom was my teacher, my dad was my principal. My idea of a class was getting together with some friends and a teacher to study a topic. 

It was a blast. I loved every bit of it. There’s no doubt here that homeschooling is a great opportunity for grade school… but what comes after? That’s what I want to discuss.

Friday, October 14, 2016

Top Handwork Ideas for Busy Boys {during read aloud time}

Hand work ideas for busy boys to do during read aloud time to keep their hands CONstructively busy.

The other day, I read a fiction book aloud to my kids for an hour-and-a-half. Straight. Right in the middle of the day. That's 90 minutes from the same book. In all, I think we got through four chapters. My kids just kept clamoring for one.more.chapter.

I read until I nearly lost my voice. ( And for someone who likes to talk all the live long day, that's saying quite a lot.)

The story had captivated us and we just couldn't get enough of it. I know what you're thinking.

Doesn't she have like a million kids? And aren't most of those boys?

To be honest, many days I feel like I could give a solid YES to both those questions. But, only the latter is true. 

Monday, October 10, 2016

Nature Pen-Pal Exchange

Nature Pen-Pal Exchange: exchanging nature from across the country with other homeschool families

"A love of Nature, implanted so early that it will seem to them hereafter to have been born in them, will enrich their lives with pure interests, absorbing pursuits, health, and good humour.” 
Charlotte Mason, Home Education, Vol. 1, p.71

Growing up, I never developed a love of nature. I lived in a desert. My experience with nature seemed to be limited to dirt and tumbleweeds. Wasteland.

Now as an adult, I have learned to appreciate the beauty of a southern dessert...the pinks and oranges of the sun as it sets behind the mountains; the distinct smell of the Creosote bush just after a rain; and even the many variety of green cactus speckled against the harsh brown of the brittle earth.

I have learned to love it.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Seeing the Genius in Your Child

Seeing the Genius in Your Child

Written by Sherry Hayes of Mom Delights

Schools measure children against “norms,” but no one is normal.

We still compare, though, don’t we? We just know all the other children are excelling while ours are falling behind.

Unfortunately, this is especially true for homeschooling moms.

I think this is because we don’t have that official “stamp” on what we are doing. There is a certain amount of security in charts and tests that we don’t enjoy as homeschoolers. Sometimes this leads us to hyper-sensitivity and defensiveness or even undue pressure on our children to perform.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

What We're Reading in October 2016

What We're Reading in October 2016

I must confess. I've got a bit of a school girl crush on vintage books. (My husband is officially on to me. He continues to feed my obsession, however, by plunking down money at tag sales and thrift shops for well-loved, well-worn classics.)

Vintage books are simple. Slow. Cloaked in rich language and contain illustrations that draw the mind to thoughts of virtue and goodness. Vintage books celebrate the everydayness of everyday life. They glorify the simple things and help to foster a thankfulness of the things that are actually right in front of me.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Filling Plates and Pages: Meet Beth Hautala

Filling Plates and Pages: Meet Beth Hautala

Written by Beth Hautala of Eat Write Repeat

“So, what do you want to be when you grow up?”

I remember that ubiquitous question being tossed in my direction when I was six or seven. Clearly not old enough to articulate a response with any kind of certainty. It’s something adults say to kids when we are trying to make conversation and want to be amused by their responses.

“I’m going to tell stories.” I said. Which, of course, elicited the appropriate amount of amusement from whatever unassuming adult had asked.
But, amusing or not—then and now—here I am telling stories. Written and otherwise. . .

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Why I Like Homeschooling: 100+ Kids Weigh In

I remember like it was yesterday. It was my very first introduction to homeschooling. It was April 1987. I was eight; sitting in Mrs. Hurst's fourth grade classroom awaiting the dreaded state achievement tests. The door opened and in walked a rather shy boy with sandy brown hair; his mother in tow. 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Small Space Homeschooling

Small Space Homeschooling-ideas for organizing learning spaces when space is limited

Written by Jessica.

Small house, big purpose

When my husband and I first bought our small house twelve years ago, it was only going to be our starter home. It was a fixer-upper extraordinaire, and we bought it intentionally because it was one of the cheapest houses we could find. We dreamed of children someday and knew that we had to purchase something that we could afford later, on just one income. With help from family and lots of sweat equity in the early years, our fixer-upper was transformed into a very livable, if still small, house. 

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Back-to-Homeschool Party, Moms Only

Back-to-Homeschool Party Moms Only (with free printable get-to-know-you mixer)

We, homeschool moms, are quick to celebrate the accomplishments of our kids. We start the school year with special back-to-homeschool traditions, we invest a considerable amount of time and money in preparation for that first day, and we launch with all the excitement of a Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade.

For the rest of the year, we plant ourselves on the sidelines and cheer loud. louder. loudest for our kids. We wave our proud-momma banner wildly and praise each of their tiny educational steps forward.


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