Homeschooling High School Without Tears

Homeschooling requires a lot, but homeschooling high school really takes effort. As a homeschooling mom of six, I am now homeschooling 2 high school aged children. Both of them are very different and have very different educational requirements. Yet, I have found with each of them that I need to keep that motivated while challenging them academically. The only problem I have is that we have a budget to stick to; which means that I don’t have a lot to spend on getting them the variety of courses that they need.

For this reason, I began to research the various FREE online courses that are available on the internet. I began to realize that I literally had a wealth of resources right at my fingertips. There are so many amazing options with the open course ware that colleges across our country have made available. These courses are high quality, and are usually from amazing universities such as MIT and even Yale.

During this past year, we have been able to use these courses to gain incredible knowledge, and then to validate this knowledge we have taken the CLEP test that corresponds to each course. This not only gives them viable course work for high school, but also college credit as well! It is definitely a win/win situation for each of them. This used to be a fairly unused method of dual enrollment. However, in the last few years, with the explosion of open course ware CLEP testing for college credit is growing exponentially.

If you are wondering how you can find these courses and others like them, you can use a great web site called Let’s Homeschool High School. This site has been invaluable for me as I have planned my children’s high school years. I am impressed by the level and quality of the courses that I have used and am even more excited because we have been able to take amazing courses for FREE, with simply the cost of the CLEP tests. My oldest daughter is now applying to colleges, and has most recently applied to Mercer University and was pleasantly surprised at how home school friendly they were.

For those of you who prefer to homeschool via textbooks and not the internet, the same can be done through your local library. You can purchase a CLEP study book and then check out the books you need to study for the exams for FREE. This allows you to get the material and formulate it into a course type setting. You can then easily take the CLEPT test to validate your course and again gain college credit that can be transferred to almost every college in the United States.

Buying Used Home School Curriculum – 7 Practical Keys to Making the Best Purchase

Buying home school curriculum can be expensive. Many people resort to purchasing their curriculum used, which usually works out very well for the buyer and seller. Here are a few warnings to watch out for to make your purchase of used home school curriculum, just what you need:

1. Do your homework – Check eBay and homeschoolclassifieds to see what the going rate is for the book or curriculum you are looking to purchase.

2. Check editions – What edition do you want to purchase? If it doesn’t matter, then make sure the books in the set you are purchasing are all the same edition. If you want a particular edition, then make sure you ask questions before buying.

3. If you have any allergies be sure to ask if the books come from a pet-free, smoke-free home. You would hate to start sneezing or coughing every time you opened a used book that you purchased. Even if you don’t have allergies, it’s usually a good idea to buy a book or curriculum that doesn’t smell like animals or smoke.

4. Ask the condition if not stated. Most people state the condition of the book(s) they are selling. If you have any questions about the description or if the description is incomplete – always ask!

5. Complete set – Make sure you ask if all the lessons are in the set if this isn’t mentioned in the ad or auction.

6. Set your price. When bidding on an auction for your book or curriculum, make sure you decide ahead of time how much you want to spend. This will keep you from spending more than you want to at the end of the auction when the bidding can get a little crazy.

7. Check the seller’s reputation. Make sure you look over any complaints at the site you are purchasing from. On eBay check the seller’s feedback ratings and make sure you are dealing with a reputable seller.

Purchasing home school curriculum can be fun and rewarding. I have bought and sold quite a few home school books and have met many wonderful people. Hopefully these tips will help you have a positive experience with purchasing used home school books and curriculum.

The Peanut Butter Family Home School

Have you ever heard of home schooling being associated with peanut butter? If you’re like me, I hadn’t either until I read this book years ago. In fact, I’ve read it several times now, over the years, because of the author’s sense of humor and witty reflection, of what life is sometimes like for a home school family. He reveals that home schooling “is full of surprises, challenges, and blessings.”

Okay, but what is the connection with peanut butter you ask? Bill Butterworth associates home schooling and peanut butter with life. He feels life is very much like peanut butter. At different times it can be smooth or crunchy. But most importantly, like peanut butter on two slices or bread (or anything else it touches), home school families stick together.

Now, what would you call the house of a home school family that buzzes with constant activity, houses 4 young children, 2 adults, and a new baby on the way? Why Union Station, of course! As Bill says, “What else could you possibly call a home that’s like a train depot? It fits so well. Our home has all the craziness of a terminal, yet it also provides the place to rest between trips. So it was settled: Union Station.”

The chapter titles of this book are rather intriguing as well. Try to picture in your mind, Heppie Bread, Home-School Trivial Pursuit, Return to Walton’s Mountain, The Tale of a Whale, The Union Spy Station, and the list goes on.

As Pastor, radio Bible teacher, and author Chuck Swindoll states, “I happily cast my vote for the real-life Peanut Butter Family. It is warm-hearted, fun-loving, always- encouraging statement of affirmation on the value of being in touch with your kids. What I appreciate most is that it comes from a home where the parents practice a lot more than they preach. You’ll love it.”

Do you want a book that makes you smile? Read this one! I’m glad I did!!

How To Choose A Home School Curriculum For Your Children

Often one of the first questions asked by families that are changing to home schooling “what curriculum should we be using”?

It’s a difficult question that unfortunately does not have an easy answer. There are many things to consider.First you will have to determine which curriculum works the best for your entire family. You will be teaching your child so it has to be something that you understand and can present in an engaging style for the student. You also should consider if this works with your family schedule. Some online based curriculum have live teachers so class times may not work around your schedule.Here are some other things you will want to consider.

  • What is your child’s learning style? If they currently have no interest in reading you would not want to consider a curriculum tat is 100 percent book based. Does your child spend a lot of time on their electronic device? An online curriculum may be more suitable for this type of student.
  • Does your child have any learning difficulties? There are several online curriculum available that are specifically created for kids with special needs and learning disabilities.
  • Your budget is also key in determining which curriculum you will be selecting. Curriculum costs can range from a few hundred dollars each month to zero cost. It all depends on the amount of effort you are willing to put into the lesson plan. There are several library based curriculum out there that are low cost to free.
  • How much time are you willing to invest each week? Although, most home schooled children do not spend 8 hours each day Monday through Friday like the traditional public school student. You will need to determine how much time would be required from you for different curriculums.
  • Read online reviews for any curriculum that you are considering. If a parent loves something they will sing its praises and tell you everything that’s great about it! If they aren’t happy they will also give you every detail why. Their reasons for disapproval may be regarding things such as time and effort which may not affect your decision.
  • Join home school groups on social media. This is a great opportunity to ask questions from veteran home school parents.

Don’t feel like you’re failing if the first curriculum that you choose doesn’t work for you.Most parents will tell you that they have gone through multiple curriculums before finding the one that worked best for them.

Also search for used curriculum sites online. You can usually find gently used curriculum that is deeply discounted.

Top 5 Characteristics Of Good Leadership To Instill In Our Home School Children

I am sure that this list can be jogged and added and taken away or all of the above, after being in the presence of several true leaders these are the ones that stuck out in my mind. Our home schooled children can be given a greater chance to make a difference in the world if the are leaders in mind, instead of following others blindly. I made it simple on purpose to give home school parents a chance to incorporate some of these attributes in their curriculum and then we can all live in a better world. – each one teach one –

1. Humility –

Humility is knowing your ability and limitations especially the correct measuring of ones own worth and value. I’m looking at the humility of Christ where it was felt as an unseen power, not leaders who won’t go out of their front door to lead.

2. Strength of character (will) –

The Moral qualities of a leader; the principles and motives that control the life of a leader to make the right choices. If you teach your home schooled children to make the right choices that will propel them to the fore front of a lot of people who are making the worng choices.

3. Determination –

“Fortitude (determination) is the guard and support of the other virtues. ” Locke

Given the above wisdom we can realize that determination is growing in our home schooled children the attribute to never give up, never surrender.

4. Ability to give credit to others –

Most of Christ’s ministry was giving thanks to the Father, or giving all praises to the Father, or hallowing (make or respect as holy) his holy name. Our home schooled children should be taught the ability or recognize the good in each other and be thankful.

5. Willingness to accept blame –

I refer to this attribute as the ‘take up my cross and walk’ trait, when your wrong admit it and take it. When you let down your team, raise your hand and accept responsibility so the rest of the members are relieved. Our home schooled children must not be taught to point fingers at anyone but themselves.