JUL
21
2014

Homeschooling 101: High School

I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling through highschool.   Homeschooling through the upper grades can be an overwhelming and intimidating thought that can create alarm in some of the most relaxed homeschooling parents. So I wanted to start off this post by encouraging you. YOU CAN DO IT! Aside from the academics required, your primary goal is to prepare your student for their adult life. Homeschooling can help continue to build a bond with your student, and cement your relationship during a tumultuous time in their lives. Having a parent they can count on for training and sound advice will have eternal rewards when it comes to their future. Homeschooling through high school can also allow students to experience more things without the confinements of a classroom setting. You’re free to get out and actually participate in various things that interest them, along with learning in a more hands-on fashion. You … [Read more...]

MAY
26
2014

Homeschooling 101: Babies & Toddlers

home_101.png

I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Today we’re talking about homeschooling with babies and toddlers in tow. I know this can be a challenging time, and I encourage you to set a schedule that works for your family during this time. Don’t worry about what other families might be doing!   Homeschooling with babies and toddlers in tow is a common occurrence for homeschoolers. And while it can be slightly daunting trying to teach math while nursing a baby, and trying to occupy a busy toddler, I can assure you it can be done. As mentioned previously, flexibility is a key point in homeschooling. Depending on the year, school might need to be arranged to fit the needs of the younger ones in your home. Here are some tips and tricks to homeschooling with younger children in your midst. Include your toddler I know it might sound crazy, but my number one tip to homeschooling with toddlers is to include them in your lessons whenever possible. Even … [Read more...]

MAY
19
2014

Homeschooling 101: Standardized Testing

home_101.png

It’s that time of the year again! Time for the dreaded  T E S T I N G. So for today’s Homeschooling 101 post, we’re going to dig into the details of standardized testing and homeschooling! Are you excited? You should be because I’m here to encourage homeschoolers everywhere! Testing isn’t as bad as you think, and YES YOU CAN DO IT!   As with everything, you’ll want to start by checking your state requirements to determine if standardized testing is required. Some states offer testing or yearly assessments which are less stressful for the student, so it is good to know what your requirements are. I prefer to test regardless of my state requirements because I use the tests to gauge how well my students are doing. We choose to test annually starting in 2nd grade. In my state testing is required starting in 3rd grades and every odd grade after that. I begin in 2nd grade to give my students a “trial run” test. This allows them to get used to the test itself as … [Read more...]

MAY
12
2014

Homeschooling 101: Discipline

home_101.png

I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! These posts are for people who are thinking about homeschooling but don’t know where to start. They’re all about sharing information on getting started, choosing curriculum, organizing your home, and staying the course! Today we’re going to talk about homeschooling and discipline. Discipline can be a touchy subject, and so I’ll share how we do it, but please feel free to use whatever works best in your home and with your family. The key to discipline in your homeschool is to be consistent. Reward good behavior, and have consequences for poor choices.     Homeschooling is a very exciting and scary venture for most parents. And once we get over the scary part, we move into the excited phase! We pick our curriculum, organize school areas, get new supplies, and have an overall sense of thrill for our first day of school. Our children are often just as excited as we are about a fun new year! However, as … [Read more...]

MAY
05
2014

Homeschooling 101: Teaching Multiple Grades

IMG_0677web.jpg

Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Today we’re going to talk about the inevitable teaching multiple grades all at the same time. It’s one of the biggest challenges in homeschooling, but fear not, it can be done!   Four children = Four Grade Levels Oh My! Depending on your homeschooling family, you may find yourself needing to teach more than one grade level simultaneously. While this may seem like an overwhelming situation, with a little preparation and patience you can successfully teach multiple grades. Here are some tips to teaching multiple grade levels at the same time. As most of you know, we have four children, and this year has been the first year that I’ve really had four different grade levels going all at once. I’m not gonna lie to you, it can slightly overwhelming! But with a little prep work and a few tips from this veteran homeschooling mama, we can make it work!   Group Work: I suggest that you try to do as … [Read more...]

APR
22
2014

Ham and White Bean Soup Recipe

IMG_0801web.jpg

Hi everyone! I’m back today with an easy recipe for you!   Every now and then we make a spiral sliced ham for dinner, and for a long time, I just tossed the left over bone with all of that meat on it. I never could get it all off. ugh. Anyway, I’ve finally come up with a really easy and delicious Ham and White Bean Soup recipe to use up that left over ham! Interested? Read on…     Ingredients Leftover ham bone (with ham on it) 16 oz. bag of northern white beans 1/2 sweet onion finely diced Optional: diced carrot and celery (or any other veggie you like in your soup) Optional: 1 Tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar Directions: Place ham bone and beans into a stockpot and cover with water. Simmer all day on low heat. Add your onions and other veggies about 1 hour prior to eating so they cook until soft. If you want a little fresh kick to your soup add 1 Tablespoon of apple cider vinegar right at the very end. That’s it! No kidding, just put the … [Read more...]

APR
10
2014

Easy Chicken, Rice, and Bean Burritos

IMG_0813web.jpg

  Hi everyone! I have another simple and fast recipe to share with all of you busy homeschoolers out there! After saying this was fast, I realized that I normally make these a few days after I’ve made my Southwestern Chicken Tacos, refried beans, and Spanish rice. That way I can just pull out the leftovers, stuff them into burritos and heat! It’s a great way to use up the leftovers but make it seem like a whole new meal! But if you need to take the long way…the directions for the insides are at the bottom of this post! Ingredients: 4-5 Cooked and shredded chicken breasts 2 cups Spanish Rice 2 cups Refried beans 1 can cream of chicken soup 1/2 c. milk Tortillas of your choice. I like the small corn tortillas, just heat in a warm skillet for about 30 seconds each side. Optional: Toppings of your choice, we use sour cream, guacamole, tomatoes, and lettuce. Maybe a little hot sauce if we’re feeling crazy ;o)   Directions: Spray a casserole dish … [Read more...]

APR
07
2014

Homeschooling 101: First Day of School

home_101.png

Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Last time around we discussed Storage Solutions and  Organization. And today we’re going to talk about the inevitable FIRST DAY OF SCHOOL!   Once your curriculum is ordered, lessons are planned, the work area is organized and ready, it’s time to start school! Typically students and teachers are excited for the first day and it’s no different in your homeschool. To help foster our excitement I let students help to set up the school room, purchase supplies, and organize their work area. Once it’s officially time to start school, everyone is excited and ready to go! Some people like to start school on a Wednesday, so they’re only doing three days the first week, then break for the weekend, and then start in on Monday with a full week of lessons. I typically start on Monday, but keep the first day light and fun. Remember, there is not one “right” way to homeschool, and what works for one … [Read more...]

MAR
31
2014

Homeschooling 101: Homeschool Storage Solutions

home_101.png

Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Last time around we discussed Student Organization. And today we’re going to talk about homeschool storage solutions and a few extra things too!     Student Work Long Term Storage. The records you are required to keep will be determined by your state requirements. Most states do not make you keep everything for each year. However, many will request an attendance sheet showing hours and days completed for each student. Some states will also require a list of curriculum used each year as well. Find out what your state laws are before you delve into the practice of storing all of your student’s work. You’ll find that it adds up quickly and many of us don’t have the storage space required to keep all of everything over the years. For the time being, I have chosen to keep our work for my own fond memories. I also have a hard time throwing out a full year’s worth of sweat and tears! So for … [Read more...]

MAR
24
2014

Homeschooling 101: Student Organization

home_101.png

  Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post for you! Last time around we discussed Teacher Organization, so today we’re going to talk student organization!   Organize Student Daily Workload Most of you know I’ve used some form of the workbox system developed by Sue Patrick for the past several years. I have to say that organizing our daily work has been a sanity saver for me. Put, the workbox system is a way to organize all of the daily school work for your student. You can use rolling carts, plastic crates, file folders, accordion files, or whatever else fits your needs. See a workbox video tutorial here. Here is a close up of my Vika Alex Drawer Units $79.00. There are only 5 drawers in these, so right now we’re putting two subjects in a couple of the bottom drawers. Using this organizational system, you will keep everything needed for one subject into each drawer, file folder, or whatever organizer you choose. That way … [Read more...]