How Can Homeschoolers Handle Being with Their Kids All Day?

Anytime I meet someone new and disclose to them that I homeschool, their immediate reaction is to recoil and ask, “How can you stand being with your kids all day?” I’m going to admit that at this point in my life, I cringe and think, “How can they think it’s okay to say that?” I’m not going to pass judgment on these people, however, because I’ve been there.

Since we’ve all grown up with the routine of children being separated from their families for 35 hours a week and 36 weeks a year minimum, it’s a valid question. As a society, we just aren’t used to being with our own kids anymore because we’ve grown so used to them being gone most of the time in school or daycare.

So how do we do it?  Continue reading “How Can Homeschoolers Handle Being with Their Kids All Day?”

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How to Use Unit Studies in a Relaxed Homeschool

Have you ever recoiled in horror at the thought of the amount of work it would take to use unit studies? Do you imagine overly crafty, resourceful women merrily dancing their way through the library and craft store in an effort to collect bountiful resources for an in-depth look at topics you’d never even considered learning about before?

Good thing you have me. 🙂

Unit studies just don’t have to be that complicated. (Unless you prefer them to be, which is an entirely different post altogether.)

I’ve got 11 kids. I homeschool. I blog. I’ve got a house to take care of. And I am not crafty. At all. But…unit studies have made our homeschool vibrant, fun, and relaxed.

Want to know how I do it?  Continue reading “How to Use Unit Studies in a Relaxed Homeschool”

10 Reasons All Kids Should Read at Their Own Pace

Learning to read is one of the most exciting milestones many parents look forward to in the lives of their children. It is, without a doubt, a breathtaking moment the first time you listen to your child read a book to you.

Literacy opens so many doors to so many new opportunities. Reading a great work of fiction is a magical way of escaping from the monotony of daily life. It is a gate through which the imagination can take flight. It grants the ability to function in an extremely text-driven world.

But does it matter so much when it happens? Right now I’m in the midst of reading a book on educational reform, and so far a great deal of it deals with the problems brought on by insisting that children learn to read at younger and younger ages.

What has surprised me the most in my reading is that it is largely parents who are demanding more and more with each passing year that their 3- and 4-year olds are introduced to reading and math concepts before they’re developmentally ready for it.

Whether it’s from worrying about their children’s futures, competitiveness, or impatience depends on the person, but no matter the reason, it’s time that the parents of little ones stop, take a breather, and think about why this is so important to them.

Because, truth be told, more and more child development experts are finding that this trend can actually be harmful in the long run.  Continue reading “10 Reasons All Kids Should Read at Their Own Pace”

The Bad Habits of Jesus- Review

“The cross is not a giant plus symbol. It is an ‘I’ crossed out.”- Leonard Sweet

Are you a good Christian? Do you prefer the company of fellow believers to being in a crowd of unbelievers? Do you try your best not to offend people? Are you a rule follower?

I’ve got news for you…

According to today’s standards of what makes a good Christian, Jesus had some pretty bad habits.

Shocked? I have to admit, when I saw the title of The Bad Habits of Jesus, I was a little miffed. The first thought that came to my mind was, How dare someone suggest such a thing???

But then I actually read it.  Continue reading “The Bad Habits of Jesus- Review”

An Inside Look at Our Relaxed Homeschool- The Teens

I’ve been covering our relaxed homeschool methods for the past two weeks, and although I’ve already written about the littles and the middles, my teens give the best description of what relaxed homeschooling is actually all about.

This year I have three teens- 14, 16, and 17 years old- and they couldn’t be more different from one another. Because of this, I don’t group them together for their learning. They each have their own individual learning style, and I’ve found that our homeschool is the most efficient when we can support them in the way that fits each of them the best.  Continue reading “An Inside Look at Our Relaxed Homeschool- The Teens”

Fun and Frugal Thanksgiving Ideas for Kids of All Ages

Thanksgiving will be here in a mere two weeks. There’s something about the start of the holiday season that inspires me to get together with my kids to come up with fun and frugal ideas and activities to do together. This may not sound like much, but I assure you that I am not normally a crafty person, so this is big.

Last week we just finished our Thanksgiving unit study, and we had so much fun that I’ve decided to share with you some of our favorite activities and books. What better way to prepare for a holiday season that’s going to pop up before you know it, anyway?  Continue reading “Fun and Frugal Thanksgiving Ideas for Kids of All Ages”

Imagine a World Free from Compulsory Schooling

Last week I wrote a pretty controversial post about the government’s role in the educational system. One of the points I made that is nearest and dearest to my heart is that school should not be mandatory. The government is not the parents- we are.

This idea brought about some wonderful and thought-provoking comments. So thought-provoking , in fact, that today’s post will be my attempt to address some of the questions that were raised by this non-conformist notion. Keep in mind that my responses are strictly my opinion, and I’m in no way claiming to be an expert on this sort of thing.

This is simply my way of putting forth the proposal, what if???   Continue reading “Imagine a World Free from Compulsory Schooling”

The Kingdom of Oceana- Review

Imagine the beautiful island of Hawaii 500 years before it was ever known by that name. Imagine a world at one with nature and all that belongs to it. Imagine a place of unimaginable warmth and beauty.

Welcome to The Kingdom of Oceana

Have you ever wished you could escape your daily life just for a little while to visit someplace magical? Recently I’ve had the privilege to do just that.  Continue reading “The Kingdom of Oceana- Review”

Why Do Colleges Waste So Much Time and Money?

Most people who know me from my blog recognize me as that crazy lady who homeschools ten kids. 😉 What many people do not know is that I have an 11th child who is in college. Makes sense. This is a homeschool blog, so there’s really no need to mention it.

Today, however, is going to be different because my inspiration has come from some things my eyes have been opened to since he started college. Up until this point, his experience has been mainly pleasant, but there is one thing that has been hanging out in the back of my mind that I really need to bring to light.  Continue reading “Why Do Colleges Waste So Much Time and Money?”

5 Reasons Why the Government Should Stay Out of Education

Ever since writing this post last week, I couldn’t help but keep turning the issue of government education over and over in my head. I’ve been having a really hard time wrapping my brain around why so many people- my former self included- just seem to obey whatever the powers-that-be tell them to do with their own children for 30-35 hours a week, 180 days a year.

I’m sorry, but it just isn’t right.

I’m really hoping against all hope to wake people up to this fact and at least ponder what I have to say here:

The government has no business being in the education business, and here are 5 reasons why:

Continue reading “5 Reasons Why the Government Should Stay Out of Education”