Don’t Wait; Start the Transcript Now

Once again this year, I learned of the death of a homeschool parent/friend. The first time this happened, I learned of it when a man contacted me, trying to figure out what his son had been learning and where to go from here. He’d left the homeschooling to his wife. She’d kept the records, purchased materials, took care of lessons, etc. while he’d been busy earning a living to pay their bills. But then, in the midst of their grief, he realized that he didn’t have a clue Continue reading Don’t Wait; Start the Transcript Now

What Are My Teens Missing Out On?

Opportunities Missed by My Teens Because of Homeschooling

I was reading another woman’s blog about the things her teens had missed out on because of homeschooling “Opportunities My Teens are Missing Because We Homeschool High School” . I know Annie’s point was that what originally seemed like missed opportunities haven’t really mattered in the long run for her kids, but as I looked at her list, I compared her list to my own children’s experiences. Continue reading What Are My Teens Missing Out On?

What Can I Teach? Trolling?

In the evenings, after the kids are in bed, I like to go online (particularly on Facebook these days, though I’ve favored other sites in years past) and browse. I often try to help out homeschoolers with questions by sharing my knowledge. Tonight I did this as usual. When a homeschool parent asked about how to find evaluators, another woman made a comment that made it sound as though the school district would somehow limit what she could teach her child Continue reading What Can I Teach? Trolling?

A Homeschooling Twist to an Office Visit

I was at a government office this morning with my 4 yr. old. Apparently an employee meeting was going on for a good part of the time we were there as many employees suddenly disappeared and the speed at which people were being seen slowed down considerably. The time dragged on, but my little guy was behaving quite well given the situation because he’d made friends in the waiting room and had convinced several other small children to join in his imaginative play. Having a snack on hand didn’t hurt either.

Despite having an appointment, we’d been there for two hours when we were finally seen by the woman we really needed to see.  When we entered her office, my little guy asked if she had any toys in her office. She didn’t. But she gave him a clipboard with a piece of paper and a pencil, and he was soon happily drawing smiley faces and doodles.

So far, so good. We were almost done. I was hungry, since it was now lunchtime, and I was ready to get out of that office and get on with the rest of my day. I couldn’t wait. And then something unusual happened.

My little fellow walked closer to show me his drawing. I complimented him on writing his name on the paper and pointed out that I was happy to see that he’d used a lowercase letter in his name in a spot where he usually (incorrectly) writes a capital letter.

“Do you homeschool?” the woman asked.

I don’t usually discuss much of anything than the weather and the business at hand with government employees, so I was taken aback. “Yes,” I finally answered.

It turned out that she was looking to begin homeschooling her five-year-old. She’d looked for local homeschool support groups and found one that didn’t meet during the summer. So I talked about my group that meets year-round, as well as how she didn’t have to register her child for the upcoming year but could homeschool unofficially for a year if she liked and about the number of homeschoolers in our area (likely more than ten thousand in our county alone).

Funny, when I left the office, I didn’t mind the wait as much as I had before. And she commented that she was so glad that I’d ended up in her office (rather than seeing a different woman whom I’ve dealt with for years).


But Why Say That?

“Can I include audio books as reading materials?”
“Can my child study [a particular country], in depth, for world history?”
“Can I decide that my child’s done with the school year even though he hasn’t completely finished the curriculum?”…

I see questions like these (and others) online all the time. I like trying to share what I know to try to help these homeschool parents who are trying to figure out what they’re doing. And I understand that other people are Continue reading But Why Say That?

Graduation Memories of a Different Sort

What Do You Remember About Your High School Graduation?

As friends post online about their children graduating from high school, one asked about our own memories of high school graduation or if we even remembered the event at all. I do remember mine, but thinking about it brought back other memories, too, memories of being frightened and alone but surviving.

The graduation ceremony itself took place on a windy day outside in the football stadium. I remember holding the flower Continue reading Graduation Memories of a Different Sort

Virtual School Lessons

This year, we tried Florida Virtual School (aka FLVS)–the online public school program run by the state of Florida–for a couple of courses for my teens with mixed results. Well, they have both earned good grades in the classes taken, but we’ve all learned something about public school courses–not just how to take them but their quality and the huge impact they’ve had on our homeschooling.
Continue reading Virtual School Lessons

Creating Memories with Our Homeschool Support Group

Our homeschooling would be so different without our homeschool support group. I say this as I’ve just put a lot of finishing touches on our group’s fourth annual yearbook since I’m the editor-in-chief. Shutterfly photo books have, it turns out, a limit of one thousand photos per book, and we had reached the limit without completing all of our pages, so I had to go back and check over what the committee had done and weed out photos that were essentially duplicates so that we had space for photos from our big annual Talent Continue reading Creating Memories with Our Homeschool Support Group

Teaching a Preschooler at Home

I frequently am asked “What curriculum should I use with my preschooler?”

After teaching a lot of preschoolers in my home (including my own forever children as well as almost two dozen foster children), I’ve learned a lot about what works with most children and what doesn’t. I’ve learned that Continue reading Teaching a Preschooler at Home