Rebecca Capuano

Rebecca Capuano is the stay-at-home mom of three children (one of whom is in heaven) who also makes attempts at being a homeschooler, writer, photographer, scrapbooker, and truth-seeker. She earned her Master of Social Work degree from East Carolina University, and has worked in a variety of capacities (including group homes, day treatment centers, and public schools) with at-risk children and staff, including developing a therapeutic and educational day treatment center for delinquent youth in Wilmington, North Carolina. She currently resides in Virginia, and has written on a variety of topics for both and Home Educators Association of Virginia. Rebecca believes that family is created by God as the most fundamental institution in society, and she is dedicated to helping families nurture their children to become responsible persons of character and integrity. In addition to reading her posts at TheHomeSchoolMom, you can follow her search for truth (and blunders along the way) in family, faith and culture by visiting her blog,

How Messes Benefit Homeschooling

What Making Messes Can Do For Your Homeschool

by Rebecca Capuano

I am sitting here, on the computer, listening to animated voices, slams and bangs of metal and ceramic above — and I am very afraid. The snow may be falling outside, but it is the potential mess within that has me huddling over my work in the basement like a besieged citizen in a bomb shelter…anticipating in trepidation what I might discover when I emerge.

The girls are baking.

3 Ways to Help Kids Have Good Heroes

3 Ways to Help Them Have Good Heroes, Part 3

by Rebecca Capuano

You’ve probably heard the adage, “Heroes are made, not born”.

Not surprisingly, the sentiment applies equally well to how children come about admiring the right kinds of heroes.

Parents have a significant role in helping to create an environment in which children are drawn to choose role models who exhibit lasting, valuable qualities — by putting into place elements that encourage kids to value those qualities for themselves.

3 Ways to Help Kids Have Good Heroes

How to Help them Have Good Heroes, Part 2

by Rebecca Capuano

Henry David Thoreau wrote, “The hero is commonly the simplest and obscurest of men”.[1]

His understanding of the hero is quite a contrast to the money/sex/power-driven entertainment icons that commonly become the objects of admiration by modern children. I believe that it is parents who have a very important role in changing that — and a responsibility to create a culture in which their children want the right kinds of heroes. Homeschooling parents are in the prime position to do this, through a combination of monitoring the negative, exposure to the positive, education and modeling.

3 Ways to Help Kids Have Good Heroes

3 Ways to Help Kids Have Good Heroes, Part 1

by Rebecca Capuano

What kind of heroes do I want my kids to have?

It’s a question I’ve been pondering, lately. Because children do have heroes — people they admire, desire to be like, emulate. I know, we homeschoolers tend to hope that we will be our kids’ heroes, but it is pretty inevitable that somewhere in their tween years our offspring will become fans of someone other than just Mom and Dad.

Who children idolize can significantly influence the kinds of people they become in the future.

How I Fell in Love with Homeschooling

How I Fell in Love with Homeschooling

by Rebecca Capuano

I have a Valentine’s Day confession.

Yes, on that day when we send out cards and candy, show our “special someones” how we feel about them, and extol the virtues of true love, I feel the need to, well… spill the beans on the truth about a love in my life.

You see, it’s only recently that I have fallen in love with homeschooling.

Keep homeschooling new in the New Year with field trips, unit studies, and more

Keeping It New in the New Year

by Rebecca Capuano

The reality is that when you homeschool, it can easily seem like an endless treadmill. Often there aren’t the same demarcations in the school year that public school students experience, as many homeschoolers follow non-traditional schedules and do academics year-round. Moving from one “grade” to another becomes an issue of “in which subject?” and summer “break” can simply be a matter of shifting academics from traditional book work to more experiential learning. Homeschooling, like parenting, never ends while the kids are still at home.

TheHomeSchoolMom: New Year's Homeschool Interview

The New Year’s Interview

by Rebecca Capuano

If there’s one thing the new year does for me, it’s remind me of how quickly time is passing.

You remember, when you were younger, how a year was an absolutely interminable amount of time? And then you grow up, and then you have kids. And then somewhere around the time your youngest gets to be the mostly-self-sufficient-age (5 or 6 ish), when you wake up from baby and toddler fog, you start wondering, “Where did the time go?” “How did my children get to be so old?” You find yourself saying things like, “How is it already the new year?” and “I feel like we just finished the summer. How is it time for snow again?”

Homeschooling... the son of God

Homeschooling the Son of God

by Rebecca Capuano

Sometimes by the time Christmas approaches, I feel like I’ve squeezed out every possible ounce of meaning from the season.

We’ve done plenty of family traditions, like putting up the tree and making Christmas cookies. We’ve listened to Christmas carols and reveled in the peace of Silent Night and the reverence of O Holy Night. We’ve served together to raise money for the impoverished of the world. We’ve talked about the importance of giving, and gone out to purchase gifts for family members. We’ve lit our Advent candles each Sunday of Advent, put up our Jesse tree ornaments, and done a unit study on God’s plan for Christmas from the beginning of time.

We’re homeschoolers after all, ya know. And doing kind of comes with the territory.

Homeschooling Gratitude... For Parental Rights

Post-Thanksgiving Homeschooling Gratitude For… Parental Rights

by Rebecca Capuano

Thanksgiving got me thinking about all the reasons I am so grateful to be able to homeschool, and I listed a bunch of them in my recent post Thank You, Homeschooling. But now that Thanksgiving is over and we’re almost to Christmas, I’ve discovered that I’m still not done with the thankfulness. Nope — there is another reason that I am thankful for homeschooling that I neglected to address, and it’s a big one. In fact, it’s difficult for me to go a week without reminding me just how important this aspect of home education really is…

Christmas traditions: Our favorite - The GPPDAdvent calendar

Our Favorite Homeschooling Christmas Tradition

by Rebecca Capuano

It’s like fall comes and then… Boom! You’re getting ready for Christmas. Now, I’m certain that many of you homeschoolers out there already have your December homeschool-worthy Christmas plans in the works before Thanksgiving rolls around, and, well…yay for you. Me? The thought of Christmas plans doesn’t usually seriously cross my mind until the turkey […]

Thank You, Homeschooling

Thank You, Homeschooling

by Rebecca Capuano

There’s kind of a holiday about gratitude coming up, in case you haven’t noticed. You know that time when you give thanks for all of your blessings? Well, this whole home education list falls pretty close to the top of my gratitude list. The longer I do it, the more I love it, and the more I realize its value. Let’s be honest — homeschooling is a luxury very few people in this world can afford. Whether it is an issue of needing two incomes to make ends meet, single parents being the sole breadwinners, political opposition, or something else…home education is a phenomenal blessing for which each of us who are able to participate in it should be tremendously grateful.

Ready to Use Thanksgiving Downloads

Fun Thanksgiving Unit Studies for November

by Rebecca Capuano

Well, it’s already into the first week of November, and I’m realizing that I am supposed to be doing something Thanksgiving-y with my kids. I mean, I even write for TheHomeSchoolMom on creative ways to celebrate the holiday with the family, fun Thanksgiving activities, and ways to express gratitude. You’d kind of think that I would have this whole Thanksgiving-focus-during-the-month-of-November thing down. But, here I am, already into November, and realizing I’m not prepared. Have no fear, Thanksgiving homeschooling procrastinators, all is not lost.

Key Word Outline: The little tool with a big impact

The Little Writing Tool With Big Impact

by Rebecca Capuano

Sometimes in homeschooling, it just takes the right tool to make the biggest impact. Well, I’ve found one that has completely transformed writing for our family.

Writing is often a skill that challenges many students, because even if they have a strong command of grammar, it can be challenging to put words together in a way that is persuasive, interesting, and impactful. Even worse – many students struggle to summarize from sources when they are doing research, without plagiarizing the original source. Simply understanding source documents can also be daunting for many children, when they are introduced to research writing.

Homeschool Mom Retreats

Homeschool Mom Retreats for $25? Really?

by Rebecca Capuano

How often is it that homeschool moms are able to get away to a lovely place in the woods, with no children or husbands, and hang out and talk about homeschooling things? Never? Yeah, that’s what I thought until this past weekend. I had an experience that rocked my homeschool mom world.

I heard about this opportunity from a friend in my homeschool co-op. She sent this information about a homeschool moms’ retreat put on by Landry Academy. I had heard of the place, simply through my homeschool resources and connections, but was not particularly familiar with it. Well, the info explained that Landry Academy was hosting this 2-day retreat for $25. Yes, $25. That’s for the conference, materials, lodging at a conference center, and full meals. I was dubious, to say the least.

Homeschool Help: How bringing in others can help

Homeschooling With… Not Just Mom

by Rebecca Capuano

A lot of us start this homeschooling thing thinking that we’re going to be Super Mom. Yep, we begin the journey starry-eyed and inspired — optimistic that we will be able to single-handedly teach our children and lovingly usher them into academic excellence and emotional and physical competence.

Then life happens.

TheHomeSchoolMom: Fun Fall Activites with Leaves

Fun Fall Homeschooling Activities With Leaves

by Rebecca Capuano

I know that for many people, it is the advent of Pumpkin Spice Latte at Starbucks that officially signals the beginning of fall, but I tend to be a traditionalist. Yep – cool weather and sweatshirts, homemade beef stew and apple spice muffins…the harbingers of my favorite season of the year. And although farm visits, […]

One of Homeschooling's Biggest Downfalls (And the Fix)

An Easy Fix for One of Homeschooling’s Downfalls

by Rebecca Capuano

I think homeschooling has been the single best decision our family has ever made, but I have discovered a downfall. It’s the same thing that makes it a strength – the parent/child relationship being the the teacher/student relationship. Yes, the same bond that leads the parent to be dedicated to going to any lengths necessary to ensure that his or her child gets what he or she needs educationally is also the same bond that often leads kids to become overly dependent on their parent for help. I only realized this recently. And the revelation came upon me in an unexpected way.

The Secret to Encouraging Creativity For Kids

The Secret to Encouraging Creativity

by Rebecca Capuano

As homeschoolers, we can get our kids involved in music, provide them with art lessons, and give them the freedom to come up with ideas on their own and implement them — all of which are great ways to encourage creativity. Certainly having a home atmosphere in which children are encouraged to try out new things, express differing opinions, make mistakes and fail without retribution, and use lots of resources in ways they come up with on their own is critical to children developing their creative sides, and learning to express themselves in new and interesting ways.

But there is something else. Yep, a little secret I have found, that is the key to encouraging creativity.

Homeschooling Insider's Dictionary

The Homeschooling Insider’s Dictionary

by Rebecca Capuano

New homeschoolers can’t help but experiencing it. It often happens the first time you go to a homeschool convention, or visit a homeschool co-op. You walk in, start to get the lay of the land, and then it hits you… This is like a whole different world.

There are different norms, different terms, different expectations — and everybody who’s in it seems to “get” it. You start hearing things like “Notice of Intent” and “IOWA” and “lapbooks” and you start to wonder just what it is that you’ve gotten yourself into.

The Homeschool We Never Thought We'd Have

The Homeschool We Never Thought We’d Have…A Year Later

by Rebecca Capuano

A year ago, we were thrust into a homeschool we never thought we would experience — learning how to deal with the loss of a child. It has been a tremendously painful education; one we would not have willingly chosen. But, like all education, it has also put us into a better position to be able to understand and navigate this thing called life — and has shaped who we are… for the better.

And isn’t that what homeschooling is about?