SEP
01
2014

Homeschooling 101: Socialization

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Hi everyone, I have another Homeschooling 101 post for you.  Today we’re talking about that dreaded word… SOCIALIZATION!   One of the first questions I am asked regarding homeschooling is… “What about socialization?” I almost hesitate to even include this topic in my series because of it’s sheer silliness. But I know for new homeschoolers, the issue of socialization can be one of their main concerns. Just so we’re all on the same page, let’s define socialization. According to the dictionary, socialization is defined as a process whereby an individual acquires the knowledge, language, social skills, values, and behavior to conform to the norms of a group or community.   Regarding Homeschooling and Socialization Studies have repeatedly shown that homeschoolers on average outperform their public school peers, not only academically, but socially too. Homeschoolers tend to have more self-confidence as well. They are also shown to score approximately … [Read more...]

AUG
27
2014

2014 September Monthly Meal Plan

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Good morning everyone! Well, we’re finally back in school. I don’t know where my summer went, but I’m always excited when we get to start new curriculum and a new year. Fall is one of my four favorite seasons, and I H.E.A.R.T. September back-to-school time! And this is when my meal plans really start coming in handy. Getting back into the groove of things always takes time. I somehow forget…or maybe block out…just how much of my day is taken up by educating our children! Point being there really isn’t much time for me to think about meals these days! Anyway,  I hope my plans help you out as well, and can take at least one thing off of your busy plate each day!   Download the 2014 September Monthly Meal Plan: 2014 September Monthly Meal Plan PDF 2014 September Monthly Meal Plan Word Doc (Editable)     Coming soon! I’m working on putting them all together in a book for you as well to make it a little easier each month! And since you always ask, … [Read more...]

AUG
26
2014

Back-To-School for Homeschoolers!

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I H.E.A.R.T Back-To-School time! It means fall is coming, we get to start new and exciting curriculum, and we get new school supplies! Goodness all around! But what does Back-To-School look like for a homeschooler? I mean, don’t we just come downstairs and start school? No back-to-school fanfare? Well, honestly I don’t think we’re much different than other kids. But then that could be just me…because I hype it up and all. We shop for new supplies just like other folks do… This year we managed to only get a few things because we still had some left over from last year. Our list included things like scissors (do your kids misplace scissors like mine? No clue where they go…), glue sticks, dry-erase markers, colored pencils, line paper, rulers this year because our old ones writing had faded, and of course our favorite Ticonderoga pencils! This year we spent $75 total on supplies. I looked and last year we spent $150, so that’s half! And I know it’s WAY less than your average … [Read more...]

AUG
25
2014

Homeschooling 101: Special Needs Students

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Good morning! Today I have another Homeschooling 101 post to add to my series.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling special needs students.   First off I want to encourage you that you are not alone! There are several families that have chosen to homeschool children with special needs. The needs may range from something such as attention deficit disorder to children with more severe and multiple handicaps. Often bringing special needs children home to be educated is a wonderful way to reach an otherwise reluctant student. As their parent you can offer your student the security, stability, flexibility, and encouragement they need to be successful. While I do not personally have special needs students there are a wide variety of websites and information available to homeschooling your students. One thing I’ve learned about this topic is that each student’s needs are unique, and so your approach to homeschooling them will also have to be individualized … [Read more...]

AUG
24
2014

Homeschool in the Woods Review & Giveaway

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I’m so excited to try a new history unit this year! While we’ve used Abeka in the past, and it’s been fine, I really wanted to have a little more fun this year and do something out of the box. Sometimes you’re just ready for a change!   After careful consideration we’ve chosen to go with the Homeschool in the Woods Middle Ages unit to start with. We’ve done several years of United States History and it is time to start looking into some world history. We haven’t started yet, but after looking through it and getting everything ready I wanted to share some of my first thoughts on the curriculum as well as how we set it all up. --> And make sure to read to the end, because I have a great giveaway for you too!   First Impressions: My first impression of this curriculum is that it is going to be lots of fun! It is very hands on, and we love lapbooking and notebooking over here, so it’s a great fit for us. The activities look engaging and the text is definitely … [Read more...]

AUG
19
2014

2014-2015 First Day of School

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What!? Yep, it’s that time again. Back-to-school time! Honestly, I don’t think I was quite ready. And neither were my kiddos. We were knee-deep into summer, and enjoying all of the lazy, fun-filled, play-date filled, marshmallow roasting days. And now I can’t believe I have kindergartener, 3rd grader, 5th grader, and *sigh* a 6th grader…a.k.a. middle school! Say WHAT!? That tall girl in the middle is only a few inches shy of being the same height as me. She already steals my shoes. When did that happen? Last time I looked she was 4 and starting preschool. Please hold while I have a small melt down… I’ve been in denial for a few months now. Thank you for understanding, I know you can relate. So…what happened to summer you ask? Who knows. It’s eluded me, and most every one else I’ve talked to too! But, I find the best way to start school back up, is…in the words of Nike…Just do it.   Did I feel like starting? Um, no. Did I have a huge headache that day? Um, yes! … [Read more...]

AUG
17
2014

The Picture Smart Bible Giveaway

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Hi readers! I am really excited to try out a new Bible curriculum this year. It’s The Picture Smart Bible and I love the detail that they’ve put into this program and my kiddos absolutely love drawing their way through the bible! So I’m hoping this will be a great fit for us!   Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase a product through one of these links I receive a small commission. What is The Picture Smart Bible? For those of you who don’t know, The Picture Smart Bible is a curriculum that teaches all of the book of the Bible in illustration form. Each Bible book has its own full page illustration sheet with the exception of some of the shorter books that have been combined. It also comes with a time line as well as maps to help students grasp the lesson further. They currently offer New Testament and Old Testament lessons, and you can get them individually or as a set. They also come in CD, download, and printed formats so you have a lot … [Read more...]

AUG
12
2014

Anatomy of a Homeschooling Room

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With the homeschool year starting again for us, I wanted to share some room organizing ideas with you all. I’ve previously shared my homeschool room in great detail and you can see those posts here. I even did a Homeschool Room Video Tour if you’re so inclined and have about 10 minutes to spare. But today I wanted to just highlight some of the key components of our homeschool room. Not because I think you need a dedicated homeschool room, but because I think there are definitely some important elements that will aid whatever area you’ve set aside for your educationally focused family. Is that the new politically correct term for homeschooling? “We’re educationally focused”. I don’t know. Anyhoo…I have a couple of ideas I wanted to share with you to help you get your homeschooling groove on!     1. Work Space. No matter where you choose to do school, your children will need some sort of decent space to work. This includes laying out books, … [Read more...]

AUG
11
2014

Homeschooling 101: Homeschooling an Only Child

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I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling an only child.   Sometimes when we think of homeschooling, we envision a larger family. But that’s just a stereotype; there are many families who  homeschool an only child. One thing I’ve learned over the years, is that homeschooling families are as diverse as the world we live in! Don’t be intimidated by the size of your family, large or small, you can homeschool if you are committed! Not only do you have the added benefit of truly being able to tailor your curriculum to your child, but your child will also benefit from one-on-one teaching. And since you only have one student, you’ll most likely find you can finish school a little faster than most which gives you a lot of opportunities to add in fun activities like field trips, and other hands on projects! It also gives you time to participate in other homeschooling groups which I’ll talk about below. I know … [Read more...]

AUG
06
2014

Friends & Heroes Homeschool Curriculum

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For those of you looking for some great Bible DVDs and homeschool unit studies, I have the perfect giveaway for you today from Friends and Heroes! Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. If you purchase through these links I will receive a small commission.   My children have enjoyed the Friends and Heroes DVDs for a while now, and they also have homeschool curriculum that goes with their DVDs.   Homeschool Unit Study Includes: Each DVD features two themed Bible stories (usually one Old and New Testament). CD-ROM printables that can be used with multiple children. Parent’s/Teacher’s Lesson Guide including answer keys and certificates of completion. Student Workbook of activities Friends and Heroes DVD containing a full length adventure episode. Each unit study contains a lesson pack with hands-on, fun worksheets to go along with the DVD. Students will watch a fun DVD lesson then complete the resources that accompany each unit. The … [Read more...]