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?
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
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
Every year around this time, I ask my kids about what they’d like to study next year. The answers have varied a great deal but they’ve always made our studies more interesting for both the kids and me, and I know they learn more when they are fully engaged in what we’re studying. It can take a bit of creativity and work to figure out how to include their interests, but the rewards have been great.
For example, one year my son who was about ten years old at the time, asked if he could study Star Wars. My initial response was, “No, we can’t study Star Wars. Continue reading How Do You Use Kids’ Interests?
Three years ago, a mom in our group started a Shakespeare Club geared to kids of a wide variety of ages–from kindergartners to high school students. At first only our two families were involved, but I loved the idea of doing Shakespeare together. I’ll admit it–I hated Shakespeare when I was in school. I couldn’t understand much of what he wrote and dreamed of finding an interpreter to turn his words into English that I could understand. But as an adult, Continue reading Shakespeare Club
A woman I know recently asked whether it was time to begin formal reading lessons for her preschooler. I realized, as I thought about how to answer her, that experience helps so much here. I have materials on hand to teach reading formally to my little guy who is now three and a half years old. But I’m sure that he isn’t really ready for the sorts of lessons those materials would push. Instead, I’ve stuck mostly to informal lessons because my goal at this point is to keep the learning fun; I want him to grow up loving reading and learning and wanting more. Continue reading Time for Formal Reading Lessons?
P.E., or physical education, is a subject that seems to throw some people who just can’t imagine how it could be taught at home. There are so many possible ways to approach teaching P.E. though. Here are a few we’ve used over the years. Continue reading How Do You Teach P.E. at Home?
One of the things I love about homeschooling is the freedom to set our own schedule based on our own priorities. This freedom is so important when disaster looms.
This past week, the meteorological tracking models predicted that Hurricane Matthew was about to strike very close to our home in south Florida–so close that if they were wrong by even a few miles, we’d be at ground zero. We’ve been through a few hurricanes previously. When Wilma hit, we had furniture piled against the front door and we pushed against that furniture for what seemed like forever as we battled to keep the storm from pushing our front doors open; we later discovered that a couple of our neighbors had not been able to prevent theirs from flying open. During Frances, a huge tree in our backyard was partially uprooted and hung over our house, threatening to crash into it until we found a neighbor Continue reading Homeschooling During a Hurricane
Lately I’ve been struggling with some attitude problems from a certain teenager. This teen drags feet when it’s time to come do lessons, argues about being required to do work, gets upset when given work to do or when told to get up in the morning, etc. Frankly, I’ve been getting tired of it. (And it reminds me greatly of our three-year-old but in a larger package, though the teen doesn’t see the resemblance at all when it’s pointed out by others.) At times, I’ve pondered how nice it would be to put said teen in a school so I could get a break from the attitude for a while, but I know that wouldn’t help–it would just involve more parties in the problem and complicate it even more.
Earlier this week, I was so frustrated when a lesson had to be terminated early because of this attitude. A Bible lesson no less. A morning wasted, I thought Continue reading Teen Attitudes
A mom worriedly told me that her young daughter didn’t do a lot of math lessons this past year. She had worked on her basic math facts and learned to use math in real life situations as they came up, but she worried that this wouldn’t be enough. Could she pass her homeschool evaluation without a lot of other written math assignments to show?
As a young girl, when I was homeschooled as my family sailed the world, I did book work one day a week. Mondays. Only on Mondays Continue reading Enough Math?