TheHomeSchoolMom Encouragement, tips, and practical helps for homeschool moms Fri, 31 Oct 2014 20:19:39 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Ask Jeanne: Concerns about Spelling Fri, 31 Oct 2014 20:17:41 +0000 After we'd met for a homeschool evaluation, a mom of a ten year old wrote to me with concerns about her son's spelling.We have are having an issue (problem?) with spelling. Up until last fall we had been using All About Spelling with good success (I thought) and had made it through five levels. Since then, it's kind of fallen to the wayside, and every few weeks I have my son write a story, mark the words he has misspelled (which he always identifies), and then work on spelling them correctly. When he tries to write things out, he has a really hard time spelling and has to really think things through. ]]> 0 5 Benefits of Playing Chess Mon, 20 Oct 2014 21:09:48 +0000 It's not part of the traditional curriculum in United States schools or homeschool families -- but playing chess is a part of the curriculum in about thirty countries around the world. According to Dr. Teresa Parr of MATCH, there are five significant educational advantages to chess for homeschoolers (and others) to consider.]]> 0 Educating Head, Heart, Hands, and Health Wed, 01 Oct 2014 05:10:00 +0000 I grew up participating in 4H, and while I recommend the 4H program itself, I also find myself thinking a lot about the four "H's" as they apply to homeschooling: head, heart, hands, and health. If you want a holistic way to personally assess your homeschooling, think about whether what your kids are doing is working in each of these areas.]]> 1 Playing Music By Ear: The Hidden Problem (and what to do about it) Tue, 30 Sep 2014 16:11:08 +0000 It's a skill we'd all love to have - the ability to play music by ear, and not need the actual musical score. You know, sit down at the piano, and just start playing whatever tune is in your head. There are so many benefits to such a talent: the freedom to express oneself musically, versatility in being able to put one's music to good use for economic or artistic purposes, the ability to entertain and please others...and if we see the talent of playing by ear in our children, we are usually thrilled. And why wouldn't we be?]]> 0 BSA Merit Badges {Free Unit Studies} Mon, 08 Sep 2014 12:00:55 +0000 Where can you find over 100 free high quality unit studies? Boy Scouts! The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) program offers great merit badge materials to its Scouts, which my older sons used on their way to achieving their Eagle Scout ranks. Completing merit badge requirements was often a great addition to their study of science, history, culture, government, business, and technology, and they also learned some great life skills for staying fit and healthy, managing money, and dealing with emergencies.]]> 0 Homeschooling High School: Our 11th Grade Plan Thu, 04 Sep 2014 17:20:52 +0000 We are homeschooling high school all the way through. If you would like to see how we track credits and create transcripts, see Our 10th Grade Plan. If you haven't checked out our free Homeschool Planner Plus download, you should take a look at it for creating high school transcripts. It is easy to plug in your courses and credits and the spreadsheet calculates your GPA for you.The 11th Grade Plan: DE English - This year's focus is on composition through the local community college's ENG 111 course. Over the course of the semester, students work to complete a research paper from the abstract topic proposal to the final draft. It is a challenging course that goes into the details of the process for a single paper instead of completing multiple papers.]]> 0 Help! My Home Is Overflowing With School! Mon, 01 Sep 2014 12:18:45 +0000 Whether you're just starting out or have been on the homeschooling journey for years, organizing your homeschooling routine can seem like an immense undertaking. The key to any successful organizational system is to keep it simple and make it part of your normal daily routine. The first year that I homeschooled my son Matt, I worked hard to make sure that homeschooling didn't throw our entire household into chaos. By the time his little brother Mason was ready for school, I had gotten a whole lot better at it.Here are some of the lessons I've learned about homeschool organization. Hopefully these simple suggestions can help you get organized, too.]]> 0 Good Reasons To Quit Homeschooling Wed, 27 Aug 2014 14:54:36 +0000 There are some times when some homeschooling parents should decide to quit homeschooling.We're used to cheerleading for homeschooling and supporting homeschoolers through temporary hard times. We're accustomed to supporting people who have short-term or medium-term misgivings about homeschooling, but their kids are really doing fine, and they're really doing fine.But if we're really going to be "Homeschoolers Helping Homeschoolers," as I've been writing about in this series, then we also have to provide support for homeschoolers who are making the decision to quit.What are some good reasons to quit homeschooling?]]> 3 Homeschooling One Child Mon, 25 Aug 2014 12:05:28 +0000 A common mental picture of a homeschooling family includes Mom, Dad, and multiple kids -- if not a whole bunch of kids. That picture may not be accurate for lots of reasons, but today I'll just take a look at the kids in the picture.There are a lot of us who aren't homeschooling multiple kids, much less a bunch. Some of us are homeschooling just one child.How does "homeschooling for one" come about? And what's it like?]]> 5 From School To Co-op Tue, 19 Aug 2014 14:55:08 +0000 Many children come to homeschooling directly from attending school, or the kids have been homeschooled their whole lives, but their parents' only existing model for group learning is the school classroom from their own childhoods.When parents hear about homeschool co-ops, they are excited about the possibilities that this kind of learning community might offer to their family.]]> 0