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Homeschooling: How Do I Know If I’m Doing Enough?

by Amanda Beaty
Woman in jeans, white shirt, and tax scarf with thought bubble and text Every Homeschool Mom Ever:: How Do I Know If I'm Doing Enough? />

At some point, every homeschooler has probably asked, “How do I know if I’m doing enough?” The short answer: “It’s always enough, and conversely, it’s never enough.” Helpful, right? The long answer: According to the National Center for Education Statistics, about one-third of college freshmen take remedial courses. There are no statistics for how that breaks down into public, private, and homeschool graduates, but homeschool students only account for 3-4% of the K-12 student population. Odds are pretty low that those in remedial college courses are all homeschoolers. Continue reading »

What Curriculum Should I Use For My 4 Year Old?

by Mary Ann Kelley
Boy sitting on a stack of books reading a book with text What Curriculum Should I use for my 4 year old />

Recently on TheHomeSchoolMom’s Facebook page someone asked for recommendations for her soon to be 4 year old. It took me back to when I had a 4 year old and a 1 year old and had recently decided to homeschool. I. Was. So. Excited. What curriculum should I use? How should we schedule our days? (I bought Managers of Their Homes and carefully scheduled every moment of our days and then proceeded to never once use the schedule.) I made lesson plans and felt organized and believed that my kids were going to get the best education ever. And honestly, we had great fun with some of the activities. So after all these years (my kids are now 19 and 16), what curriculum would I suggest for a 4 year old? Continue reading »

Our Favorite Book Series for 8-12 Year Olds

by Vanessa Wright
Boy and girl 8-12 years old lying in grass on sunny day reading a book with text 10 Book Series That Got My Kids Reading Ages 8-12 TheHomeSchoolMom.com />

When my husband and I had children, books and reading were naturally part of our day and our routines.  When we started homeschooling, I would snuggle up on the couch with the kids or I would sit at the kitchen table and read while they snacked or worked on projects. Some days were easier than others and some books were enjoyed more than others. I polled my kids and we came up with our top 10 favorite book series.  Continue reading »

Creating a Teen Book Club to Build Connections

by Vanessa Wright
Two teen girls reading and smiling with text How to Create a Teen Book Club TheHomeSchoolMom.com />

My newly 13 year old son was insisting that he wanted different school projects that didn’t always include his younger siblings (11 year old twins). After discussing, we decided to start a teen book club that would appease my desire for him to branch out into other literary genres AND would give him a social opportunity with his friends. There would, of course, be lots of food too. Continue reading »

10 Ways to Mark the End of the Homeschool Year

by Living Education Contributor
Father, mother, son, and daughter using markers while lying on the floor and text 10 Ways to Mark the End of Your Homeschool Year TheHomeSchoolMom />

Is yours one of the many families whose “school year” has a beginning, an end, and then a break before the next year begins? Schooling at home is something to celebrate, and when the end of the year arrives, it presents an opportunity for joyful recognition and reflection. Here are some ideas for ways to make it memorable and special for your family. Continue reading »

How We Keep a Spring in Our Springtime Homeschooling

by Vanessa Wright
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Spring might be my favorite time to homeschool. It has quickly replaced the awesomeness of back-to-homeschool in late summer. It’s not necessarily because of the weather—spring just feels different. My kids are all working on different things at this point. It can be overwhelming because I feel like I’m not staying on top of everyone’s everything. In the end, that’s not my job. My role is to be an Educational Opportunity Provider. We can flow with the seasons and our energy levels. It’s spring and it’s a good time to both shake things up and create a flowing routine. Continue reading »

Why I Don’t Do Homeschool Planning in the Spring

by Vanessa Wright
Pink coffee cup with green and white checked napkin on a table outside with a basket of flowers and green grass yard in the background with text Why I don't Do Homeschool Planning in the Spring TheHomeSchoolMom />

When I first started homeschooling, I was ALL about the planning. I would research EVERYTHING to nth degree. I almost broke our printer one summer printing out everything I could find about Charlotte Mason and Ambleside Online. I was pumped. We were going all in on Charlotte Mason—100 percent, friends. It was May and I was feeling awesome about everything. Fall came around, and can you guess what happened? Continue reading »

Ask Jeanne: Do I Need Teacher Training to Homeschool?

by Jeanne Faulconer
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I am not a parent yet but intend on having children and homeschooling them in the future. I’ve done a lot of research but never really found an answer to my question. I know that in my state it is not necessary for the parent to have a teaching degree, but I’d like to know whether getting a teaching degree (there are some online as well) or even attending a few college courses surrounding how to teach children would benefit the parent homeschooling the children. I’m getting my pharmacy doctorate so a teaching degree would be extra time and money so I’d like your opinion on whether you think it would be worth it. Continue reading »

Benefit of Homeschooling: Embracing the Wide Range of Normal

by Jeanne Faulconer
Group of 6 children and text />

When it comes to education, one size does not fit all. One of the benefits of homeschooling is parents’ ability to shape education to fit each, not all. Kids come with a wide range of abilities—academically, developmentally, socially, temperamentally, artistically, physically, and emotionally. Expectations in schools are based on a “standard” student when there is no standard student. Kids mature at different rates, have unique interests, have their own home environments, and have their own genetic traits. Here’s how homeschooling can make the most of that. Continue reading »

My Top 5 Favorite Homeschooling Books

by Vanessa Wright
My Top 5 Favorite Homeschooling Books You Should Read Too text with a stack of books />

It took some time and some actual homeschooling my real children to get our grove and to experience a homeschooling life that was uniquely US. I needed to make our own way—mistakes and all—and not feel pigeon-holed into a certain method or philosophy. Fast forward a few years and I now have nearly a decade under my belt (well, under my yoga pants band—do people wear belts?) and I’ve curated a stack of homeschooling-ish books that I am always recommending and also going back to for encouragement, ideas and connection. These are my top five. Continue reading »

Tips for Feeding the Homeschool Family

by Jeanne Faulconer
Tips for Feeding the Homeschool Family />

Have you discovered that feeding the kids is the homeschooling challenge nobody warned you about? For homeschooling to work, home has to work, including the food. Especially the food! We’ve put together some tips for keeping your sanity while feeding your homeschooled kids. Continue reading »