A Summer of Learning

For many kids, summer is filled with swimming, swinging, sunning and very little studying.  However, if you are homeschooling year-round this is not the case.  Of course, just because you decide to keep the lessons going throughout the summer, doesn’t mean your kids will suffer from academic burnout. Some families decide to homeschool year-round for the sake of consistency.  By keeping with a set school schedule without a break during the summer months you avoid the “learning gap.”  In other words, your kids are far less apt to forget the material they’ve learned during the first half of the year … Continue reading

The Dangers of Being Good

I’m wary of good kids. I used to be good. I was a great student who was a good citizen and polite in class. I was quiet, most of the time. Now? Now, perhaps I’m a bit of a renegade upon occasion. I’m still a good citizen, but sometimes I’m opinionated. I wiggle in class. I cast doubts upon generally accepted truths. I also make a point of making sure that kids of all sorts get an opportunity to be themselves. Yes, they need to learn how to behave well in social settings as an adult, but this doesn’t necessarily … Continue reading

Homeschool Question: What is the difference between…?

Recently the question came up by a mom wondering what the difference would be between a private school and a home school using the same curriculum. She asked if the difference was just as simple as the location of the student. I have heard this question come up more than once by those unfamiliar with homeschooling or those who believe homeschoolers chose this form of education based solely on curriculum choice. If a school using the same curriculum I would chose then why would I homeschool? Is there a difference? The number one reason parents choose to homeschool is for … Continue reading

The Opposite of a Snow Day

One advantage of homeschooling is no snow days. Now that may not seem like an advantage upon first reading it, at least to the kids. However, not having snow days or designated holidays can prove to be quite an advantage for both the parent and the child. In my house we do not take the same days off as public school. We also pay no attention to snow days. In fact, snow days are a day to work hard and get even more work done. If we did not do extra school work on a snow day there would be … Continue reading

Remain Flexible

Consistency is to parenting what flexibility is to homeschooling. When one endeavors to homeschool one needs to remain flexible or break. A house is not a building or a school. A house is a home. A home is a place where families live, grow, cry, celebrate, and laugh. An environment so full of life will be effected by life unlike the neutral ground of a school building. A home experiences loss, gain, sickness, and joy. Life is unpredictable and as routine as your homeschool may be it can be rocked by a joy or a trial. School can be interrupted … Continue reading

Are You a Teacher?

Are you a teacher? Of course you are. Do you have a degree in education? Perhaps not. People have odd perceptions of homeschooling, and one of them is that you need some background in education to teach your kids. Do you really? Of course not! What are the advantages of being a parent-teacher? While teachers have the advantage of being at arm’s length from your child, thereby having some far-away authority, you have the advantage of being connected to your child. You understand your child. It is true that teachers and other adults often see things in your child that … Continue reading

Worried about Gaps in Your Child’s Education?

My daughter often shows dissatisfaction with any history textbook she comes across. Over the years we have used several different books but her complaints were always the same. She insisted the text was not detailed enough. While I assigned historical fiction, biographies and documentaries, she still showed dissatisfaction with all the material she was surely missing. I explained that there was no possible way to cover all of history into one book that covers one year of learning. I suggested she find a period of history she was especially interested in to study indepthly. She then looked at me quizzically … Continue reading

Are Homeschool Parents Arrogant?

I happened upon a magazine article yesterday that discussed the pros and cons of homeschooling. It listed all the traditional concerns—socialization, keeping up with peers, etc.—and then an additional concern was raised. Are homeschool parents arrogant for thinking they can possibly teach their children everything they need to know? I had to stop and think about that for a minute. To be honest, the question took me aback. I’d never considered it before. Do I, as a homeschool mother, think I’m better than everyone else? Do I think I have some kind of special power that no one else has? … Continue reading

Leaving a Legacy

Let’s talk about leaving a legacy. This is something I have been thinking about quite a bit lately. Mostly because I have been quite busy creating a new business, writing, blogging, and teaching three kids in the midst of raising a toddler. I am busy. I am stressed. I am exhausted. I remember a mom who relished teaching her children. I remember a mom who would take an hour to put her kids to bed because she enjoyed reading book after book while we laughed and played. I remember a mom who would spend the afternoon playing board games. I … Continue reading

Comparing Kids

I am pleading guilty on all accounts, here. I am having a serious case of the comparing kids-itis. Perhaps it is the trial of all new homeschooling parents to have such a case, and I hope that it goes away soon. In preschool, my daughter was very, very uninterested in creating visual images that looked like anything. She loved to paint and she would paint with great vigor, creating large swaths of paper covered in a rainbow of colors. That was wonderful, and she really enjoyed it, and that was all I wanted. Although I had to admit that I … Continue reading