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Bad News/Good News of Starting Homeschooling in High School

by Jeanne Faulconer

Starting homeschooling during the high school years can seem intimidating or liberating — or both. There is both good news and bad news about starting out homeschooling in high school, but for many people the good outweighs the bad. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom Blog: The Good News/Bad News about Starting Homeschooling in High School />

How to Choose the Best Homeschool Curriculum

by Jeanne Faulconer

Choosing curriculum is important to new and prospective homeschooling parents, as well as those who want to improve homeschooling or adjust to a new phase, such as kids starting high school. Many parents start with the question, “What’s the best homeschool curriculum?” A more productive question is, “What homeschool curriculum is the best fit?” Continue reading »

How to Choose the Best Homeschool Curriculum for Your Family's Needs />

Ask Jeanne: Homeschool a Prospective Dropout?

by Jeanne Faulconer

I am seriously looking into whether homeschooling would be an appropriate option for my high school student who is failing in the public school system. She’s extremely bright, and excels in honors and higher courses, but is failing everything else. I believe homeschooling might be helpful, but I also know it could backfire too. We desperately need some expert advice! ~ Concerned in Colorado Continue reading »

Homeschooling to Prevent Dropping Out of High School />

December 2016

by Mary Ann Kelley

Christmas, Ask Jeanne, Homeschooling Efficiency, and More… Continue reading »

January 2016

by Mary Ann Kelley

Great Backyard Bird Count, High School, Narration, What Comes Next, and More Continue reading »

8 Questions to Ask When Starting a Homeschool Co-op

by Jeanne Faulconer

Homeschool co-ops work well as part of the educational landscape of some families. However, you may not be able to find an existing co-op that is near enough your home to be practical, or it may not meet the academic, creative, or social goals you have for a co-op. The other problem may be that there is a flourishing co-op nearby, but the co-op is full and has a waiting list.

You can organize a new homeschool co-op yourself, and these 8 questions will help you decide the best way to do so. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom Blog: 8 Questions to Ask When Starting a Homeschool Co-op />

Homeschooled “Runaway Radical”

by Mary Ann Kelley

Jonathan Hollingsworth’s mother remembers him coming to her and his father shortly after starting his first semester of college to tell them he would commit to two years of filling up his mind if he could then spend a year emptying his heart. Amy Hollingsworth had homeschooled her son and daughter their whole lives, and Jonathan’s sensitivity was evident from the start. Now, as a freshman at the local community college, Jonathan was idealistic and burdened with a heart for the lost. He had already spent a week in Honduras, but instead of abating his ingrained drive to help the poverty-stricken, the trip only highlighted for him how very difficult it is to meet the need found in isolated cultures — cultures where the whims of nature can threaten the very existence of the inhabitants. Continue reading »

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Talking To Your Teen About College Debt

by Mary Ann Kelley

I’m a fan of natural consequences, but sometimes the lessons are too big – with consequences that last a lifetime – for the maturity level of the child. One such example is when a child wants to take on significant debt in the form of college loans. Most 17 year old high school students do not have the life experience to be able to understand the impact that taking on tens of thousands of dollars in debt will have on their lives.

While I encourage young adults to have freedom in making their own decisions, wise and carefully presented parental input is imperative in this issue. Most people would never consider advising a 17-18 year old to purchase a $80K house with payments deferred for 4 years (and a home loan has collateral — if you go into default, they foreclose and the debt is gone), yet are comfortable with student loans that have even more of a financial impact. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom Blog: Talking to Your Teen About College Debt />

Instead of Curriculum: Lies and Statistics

by Jeanne Faulconer

One of my favorite “instead of curriculum” titles is the book Damned Lies and Statistics: Untangling Numbers from the Media, Politicians, and Activists by Joel Best.

This book is a great book for your high schooler to read. While it can be paired with a traditional study of statistics, it also works well on its own for kids who need to understand statistics from either a consumer point of view or for fact-checking research or stories in the media. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom Blog: Lies and Statistics />

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. Continue reading »

The Secret to Encouraging Creativity For Kids />

Pirates Unit Study

by Mary Ann Kelley

Ahoy, mateys! Get to know the pirates of old in this unit for ages 8-13. You will gather information on the history of pirates, where they sailed, what their lifestyles were like, what jobs they did, how they dressed, how they divided their spoils, and more. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Pirates A to Z Unit Study />

Benefits of Homeschooling: Changing Curriculum, Again

by Rebecca Capuano

I am going to be a math curriculum expert before this whole homeschooling thing is over.

Yep, we are now on our third math program in four years.

This isn’t how I planned it, but then, does anything in homeschooling go according to plan? I would have liked to have begun a math program in Kindergarten and stuck with it, at least through the sixth grade. That would have helped me be able to avoid repetition, progress more efficiently, and be able to keep a more accurate assessment of exactly what she was mastering. Continue reading »

Benefits of Homeschooling: Flexibility When a Curriculum Doesn't Work />

My Secret to Managing It All

by Rebecca Capuano

Secrets of a Successful Homeschool Mom: I think every successful homeschool mom has a secret…her secret to managing it all.

Because the truth is that homeschooling itself is overwhelming; it’s just difficult to get it all done. When you add in the responsibilities of keeping the household going along with it, sometimes we feel like we’re on some roller-coaster that we can’t ever get off. Academics to teach, social skills to impart, character to instill, cleaning to complete, food to make, activities to attend, transportation to provide, jobs to fulfill…it’s just so much. Too much, sometimes. Enough that it usually takes some sort of plan, some sort of secret — to actually get it all managed well. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: My secret to managing it all />

Dropping Out Was a Great Idea

by THSM Contributor

Lately, I’ve been hearing a lot of questions raised about how innovations in technology will change education as we know it – Can machines replace teachers? Do internet resources provide everything needed to develop professional skills? What happens if you replace school with online learning? I’ve spent my life trying to find out, and the answers I have are both promising and a little horrifying. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Dropping Out Was a Good Idea />

Start Fresh… Stay Strong… Finish Well!

by Terri Johnson

It’s the beginning of July. We just wrapped up another school year. Did your kids learn something? You bet they did! Did you have good days? Let’s hope so! How about bad days? Did you have any of those?

I did.

But I have great news for you… Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Start Fresh />

10 Ideas for Curing the Winter Blahs

by Rebecca Capuano

It’s March, and by this point in the winter most homeschoolers have the winter blahs. You know, that “sick of being inside” “tired of the daily homeschool grind” sentiment that leads you and the kids to wish you could be doing anything other than school. Often by this point in the season, the art supplies have been well used, the indoor games have been played, and everyone is in need of a little excitement. Sometimes a dose of creativity and fun can help bridge the gap until Spring breathes a breath of fresh air into homeschooling life. Never fear, there are plenty of great ways to make the waning days of winter worthwhile and educational. Continue reading »

10 Ideas For Curing the Winter Blahs />

Homeschooling From the Sick Bed

by Rebecca Capuano

I was feeling pretty good. Our curricula seemed to be working well for each child, our routine was consistent but flexible, and most of the time we’d been enjoying the homeschooling process. The kids were learning, we were making progress, and I was congratulating myself on how I actually seemed to have this whole homeschooling thing down. And then I got pregnant. Continue reading »

Homeschooling From the Sick Bed />

Getting More Mileage from Writing Assignments

by Kim Kautzer

Writing a composition doesn’t necessarily mean starting from scratch. As your children practice writing different kinds of paragraphs, stories, articles, and short reports, you can help them expand their skills by tweaking a piece of writing they completed in the past. What a great way to get more mileage out of a writing assignment! Let me share six tips for taking a former piece of writing to a whole new level. Continue reading »

What’s Next? 8 Options After High School

by THSM Contributor

Graduation is not an end, it’s a beginning. A starting point. A fork in the road. Which way will your children go? There are many options available! While in the midst of homeschooling high school, it’s a good idea to take a step back once in a while. Consider what is more important than the four years of high school. Consider what’s next. There are decisions to be made, and many options available. Discuss these options as a family, and talk about what will be best for your teen and your family. Continue reading »

You CAN teach your children a Foreign Language

by THSM Contributor

Languishing in Languages? Let me show you how to teach foreign language through the ages! Ages Birth to Five: For many children, this age range is the best time to start. Before you spend a lot of money on DVD’s, CD’s, “language learning systems” and masses of extra flash cards, take some time to think about your child and your goals for the language. Continue reading »