SEP
22
2014

Homeschooling 101: Homeschooling and the Working Parent

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Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling and the working parent.   Homeschooling itself is a full time job, so carefully consider whether or not working and homeschooling is a realistic choice for your family. While homeschooling doesn’t take the same amount of time as classroom teaching does, you will still need to follow your state requirements for attendance and annual hours. And regardless of your student’s ages, it will also require a certain amount of daily commitment on your part. That said, “Yes! You can homeschool and work”. But make no mistake…it isn’t going to be easy. There are a couple reasons why someone may need to homeschool and work. The most common occurrence is the single parent. Others may be concerned that they won’t be able to make it on one salary. Whatever your reason, there are several families who have found ways to both homeschool and work. If you are in the camp of having … [Read more...]

SEP
15
2014

Homeschooling 101: Homeschool Burnout

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Hi all! I’m back today with another exciting Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling burnout.   Feeling burnout? It happens to the best of us…and I’d even venture to say that it happens to all of us at one time or another. It is commonly referred to as “homeschool burnout”. The responsibilities of the homeschooling parent can be overwhelming at times, and the thought of another day or even another hour of homeschooling can seem like more than we can handle. I once had someone tell me that moms who get burnt out just weren’t serious enough about homeschooling. You can imagine how that affected me when I hit burnout that first year! The first thing I want to say is that “friend” was wrong. “Homeschool burnout happens to all of us at one point or another. The key is to learn how to overcome it.” Homeschool Burnout is Normal The second thing I want to say is that feeling burnt out is totally normal. Unfortunately life isn’t always a … [Read more...]

SEP
09
2014

Homeschooling 101: Time Management

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I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling and Time Management!   Good time management for homeschoolers is a necessity. You’ve already seen a sample of our daily schedule. But there are a few more tips I’d like to share with you on the topic of time management and keeping your sanity. First of all, no one can “do it all” so to speak. Something usually has to give when you’re juggling homeschooling, running a household, parenting children, being a spouse, serving in ministry, and working. Remember, the only pressure we’re under is pressure we’ve put on ourselves. If your schedule is too hectic, take a minute (I know, I know, you don’t have a minute, but trust me this will help.) and write down all your commitments. Next see what you can get rid of, and what is necessary, and then make any necessary changes to your schedule. Having some sort of routine that you follow will go a long way to helping you stay … [Read more...]

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
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
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...]

JUN
30
2014

Homeschooling 101: Kindergarten & Elementary

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Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling kindergarten and elementary level students.   Make it fun! Elementary years can be an exciting time. Students at this age are eager to learn new things, but might also start to become reluctant when things start to get harder. With homeschooling you have the flexibility to take subjects that might otherwise be somewhat boring, and turn them into hands-on type activities that make the learning process much more exciting and memorable. Now that your student has entered into elementary school, you will need to check with your state laws regarding curriculum, subject requirements, testing, and any other regulations that might be relevant to your area. But that doesn’t mean you can’t take the opportunity to make it fun. With a little bit of planning, you can add in relevant hands on projects, lap booking, note booking, field trips, science experiments, and anything else … [Read more...]

JUN
16
2014

Homeschooling 101: Preschool

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Hi everyone! I’m back today with another Homeschooling 101 post.  Today we’re talking about homeschooling preschool students.   Homeschooling Preschool Homeschooling a preschooler is probably one of the most exciting times. They’re excited to learn, and keeping school fun at this age is a must! While there aren’t any specific curriculum requirements for preschool, I encourage you to focus on creating a love of learning and keep your curriculum to the basics. Preschool is the perfect time to start because you and your child will have the opportunity to grow and learn together. In essence, preschool is a very forgiving year. It’s a time to try new things, enjoy time with your child, create fun art, make mistakes, change the way you do things, get a schedule figured out, and in a nutshell get acclimated to homeschooling. I like to use the preschool year to help students get used to a little more formal schedule without the pressure of having to do a certain amount of … [Read more...]

MAY
26
2014

Homeschooling 101: Babies & Toddlers

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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

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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...]