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Articles

Homeschooling High School

When it comes to high school, most homeschooling parents approach these years with fear and trepidation.  I will admit that I did, as well.  But I am so pleased that we decided to take the plunge and continue home schooling our oldest daughter rather than pursuing private or public school for these final four years.

Are the high school years approaching in your home?  I encourage you to stop, take a deep breath, and consider the possibility that homeschooling your high schooler might be a tremendous boon for you, your student and your whole family.  Here are some reasons why...  Read more...


Host an Authentic First Thanksgiving

With the arrival of autumn and the cooling temperatures outside, our thoughts turn to holiday celebrations – the gathering of family and friends around our hearth and home.  The brilliant color display of the deciduous trees reminds us that this is the time to express our thankfulness to the Lord for His goodness and the abundant harvest of this past year.

In the year 1621, just 10 months after arriving at Plimouth, our pilgrim forefathers held a feast to celebrate their successful harvest and the Lord’s goodness bestowed upon them.  Read more...


Scheduling the Easy Way - A 5 Step Plan!

It's that time of year.  Everyone is gearing up for school.  Parents are anxious, students are feeling dread, and everyone's pocketbooks are getting thinner.  BUT this need not be the case!  We can keep our spending under control and we can be prepared and confident for a new school year.  We can even pass that enthusiasm onto our kids so that the sense of dread is replaced by a sense of anticipation and excitement.


Must I Teach Geography?

What exactly is it about geography that makes it a subject that many home educators have become loathe to teach?  Is it because we ourselves feel so inadequate in our own knowledge of the subject?  Is it because we cannot find a curriculum that lays out a systematic and incremental course of study, and is fun to boot?  Or is it because we have finally realized that the world is really not so small after all, as the song of the same name implied and the accessibility of the world by way of the Internet has led us to believe?  Is it not true that the more you learn about a country or a region of the world, the more you realize the vast amount of terrain there is still yet to know?


Let's Get Organized this Holiday Season!

For this season ahead!  I have asked my friend Sheri Graham, who is organized (I'm not!), to share with us some holiday organizational tips and other inspirational ideas so we can prepare for the holidays and season ahead.  Here's Sheri:

 

I am beginning to think through and do some holiday planning….yes, in October!  I am finding that when I plan ahead I am less stressed and more focused on the things that really matter.  That goes for meal planning, school planning, house cleaning…and yes, holiday planning!

 


My Top Geography Websites and They're Free!

Okay, I am having way too much fun!  The Old Schoolhouse Magazine asked me to locate the best free geography sites on the web and I think that I have done just that.  I have come up with 17 great sites for helping you teach your children geography while having fun at the same time.  And the best part is that they are all free.  Let me tell you about these great tools for learning.


Choose a Great History Program for Your Family

I get asked all the time which history programs I recommend and why.  Well, I have done quite a bit of research (with my own children as the guinea pigs in many instances) and have some great recommendations for you. 


How to Avoid Overbuying Curricula

Have you ever been so wooed by a product description that you have purchased it right on the spot?  Or so convinced by friends or cyber-buddies that your children’s education will not be complete unless you use a certain curriculum?  Perhaps you have felt so intimidated about teaching a certain subject that you have purchased everything available on the topic to be sure that you cover it adequately and not leave holes in your children’s education.  Whatever the reason, many well-meaning homeschooling parents over-buy when it comes to curriculum.

 


Why and How to Use "Living Books" for Learning

It is now September and Labor Day is officially behind us.  This means that most of you have started back with school by now, and the rest of you are not too far behind.  There is something exciting about that first day of school, even that first week.  Eventually though, the novelty wears off and routine settles in.  How can you keep your children excited about learning?  The answer is to supply them with "living books."


Homeschooling with Toddlers

Do you get nervous when it gets really quiet around your house? Do you have to put markers, glue and other creative art supplies up on a high shelf? Do step stools located in unusual places around the house make you cringe? If you have answered yes to two or more of these questions, then you must have a toddler living in your home. Toddlers are a joy, there is no doubt about that, but they can also create havoc if left alone with nothing productive to do for too long... 


Geography: the Lost Piece of the History Puzzle

Macedon… Carthage… Pompeii… Gaul…  These are places of historical significance, but you will no find them on any globes or current maps around your home.  Why?  It is because they no longer exist.  Does this mean, then, that we do not have to bother with knowing their locations?


Outline Maps... Uncle Josh or Knowledge Quest?

Most home educators recognize the need for blank outline maps as a supplement to their history and geography lessons.  So the obvious question arises… which maps are the best fit for my family? Read more to make the most informed decision for your family.


To Notebook, Lapbook or Scrapbook... That is the Question!

Take a moment and think about all the school work and projects that you have completed with your children over this past year . . . in fact, over all the years that you have educated your children at home. Now think about how that work has been documented or displayed. If you are like me, you probably have a box or two of filled-in workbooks. There may be some satisfaction in a stack of completed workbooks, but apparently not too much, for when Grandma and Grandpa come for a visit to our house, it is not the workbooks that the kids dig out to show their accomplishments; it is their journals and notebooks, lapbooks and projects. These are the “books” that the children take pride in. Read more.


How to Make a Timeline Easily

 I receive many questions from new and veteran home educators over the course of a year.  In the past two months, however, there has been one question that has surfaced more than any other and that is… “How do we make a timeline?”  This is a great question and armed with knowledge and the right tools, it is not as hard as it might seem. Read more.


The Where of History

Geography is a subject many parents feel inadequate to teach. The "where" of history is just as critical to the story as the "who" and "when". To close your eyes to geography while studying history is akin to learning math without manipulatives. It can be done, but it leaves holes in the complete picture, very much like putting together a puzzle without all the pieces.  Read more.


Resurrection Cookies, Anyone?

Here is an activity that I do heartily recommend with children of all ages - Resurrection Cookies.  As you read through the recipe, you will see that this time in the kitchen with you will give your children a sobering yet joyful reminder of Christ's work on the cross for us.


St. Patrick's Day - A Unit Study

March is definitely a transition month.  The weather changes, winter sports come to a close, tired homeschooling parents begin to burn out, students get bored and restless as they long for a spring break...  March is a great month to mix things up a bit and do something different - for a week, at least!


Get Rid of the Gimmees!

Christmas can be a magical time for children.  Yet this holiday can also bring out whininess, disappointment and an ungrateful "gimme, gimme" attitude in our normally sweet children.  How can we, as caring parents, counter-act this contagious and disheartening attitude?  Let's use the word CHRISTMAS as an acrostic to remember some key thoughts and actions that can help our children (and ourselves) gain a proper perspective and appreciation for this most holy of holidays.


Ever Thought of Starting an Online Business?

It is rather off-topic, but something has been plaguing me these past few months.  Todd and I have been learning so much about growing our business, internet marketing, generating sales and more important, trust with our customers.  We have been attending seminars – in person, over the web and on the phone.  We have put into practice many of the business tips that we have learned and have tripled our business income in just 3 months.  I am not writing this to boast, but rather I say it with utter amazement.  The marketing tips we have put into practice have cost us little or no money and have produced incredible returns.  And what has been plaguing me is this… so many people would love to do what we are doing (work from home, spend more time with family, enjoy greater ministry involvement, etc.) and I just can’t keep this information to myself.  I want to share it with you.

 

     
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