For many homeschoolers, Charlotte Mason adherents or not, nature studies are a priority–especially in the early years. It is such a great way to introduce children to the wider world and spark their curiosity and love of learning. For me it is nostalgic, bringing back memories of growing up playing in the woods with frogs and bugs. I love to share these things with my children. But what do you do when you don’t live in the country? Or even if you don’t have a backyard? Well, it takes a little more effort–but I promise you great urban nature studies are not impossible.Continue Reading
Time to unbox our second grade homeschooling curriculum! When I was a kid we got one big box delivered each summer from the Calvert Academy. I still remember the way it looked and smelled and how excited I was to open it (book nerd even then). It had everything inside for the school year–even the pencils.
I am grateful that there are A LOT more options now. But there is a downside to that as well. How do you ever chose what to spend hard-earned money on? Will it be easy to use? Is it going to take too much time? Will it be fun? Will it be effective? That’s why I share with you only we use and love. I promise to never recommend something that we haven’t found to be effective and a good value for the money. And I will update this post as necessary throughout the year if we add to it or our opinions change.
Many of these choices are old favorites we are continuing from first grade. And some of them are new materials we are excited to try out. I will give a little explanation on why each of these made the cut.Continue Reading
Don’t worry, Mom. It will all be worth it. I was on the receiving end of all that effort. And the greatest homeschooling benefits I got were the ones my parents, perhaps, didn’t even think about.
When I was homeschooled in the 80’s and early 90’s it was still relatively uncharted territory. Most people had never even heard of homeschooling. After you told people you were homeschooled, and explained what that was, it was almost always met with skepticism at best–if not outright scorn. My mother had a lot of concern about the school board trying to intervene (even though I was always well above grade level). And resources were few and hard to find.
My parents were pioneers. And they were brave to even attempt it. But they knew in their hearts it was right–and it was the best thing they ever did for me. I entered college early and graduated summa cum laude. I had a very rewarding career in the legal field and then was able to transition my skills to work from home when my family became the priority.
But, more than all that, do you want to know what I really owe to homeschooling–to my mom and dad? Here are the things that mattered most:Continue Reading
What is a homeschooling philosophy
Simply put, a philosophy is “a particular system of thought”. Your philosophy on a topic is just your beliefs and assumptions about it. In this case, your homeschooling philosophy is your knowledge and beliefs about things like: how children in general learn best, how your particular child learns best, how her educational needs will change as she develops, and what specific knowledge you want your child to acquire.
When someone asks you why you made a particular educational choice, or suggests you use a certain curriculum, your philosophy is the basis for your reply to them. It underpins all of the thousands of choices you will make as a homeschooling parent. And you will make those choices more quickly and easily if you have a clearly defined philosophy. It will give you a map to navigate homeschooling for the years ahead. Not having one is being tossed by the waves and guessing which direction to go.Continue Reading