Homeschool Wisdom

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

This past Monday and Tuesday I went to our homeschool curriculum fair. Although I wasn't able to go to as many workshops as I normally do, I did glean what I could from the three workshops that I attended. Some of the concepts were familiar while others were brand-new. Here is what I came away with...
Time and Home Management
This workshop was done by Nancy Bjorkman of Heppner's Legacy Homeschool Resources. She gave lots of tidbits of information on how to make life run more smoothly. The one that I thought was most valuable was that we really teach the 4 R's....Relationships, Reading, 'Riting, and 'Rithmetic. Relationships go above all else. What does it matter if your child is really smart if he or she can't interact appropriately with others and build lasting relationships? Nancy also gave some practical tips to keep a household running of the big things that she talked about was food preparation. "Your freezer is your friend!" is her motto. This only validated what my friend (who by the way was with me at this workshop) and I have been doing these past nine months in bulk cooking and freezing. She gave us a few resources to check into to help us along the way....Freezer Cooking Manual (30 Day Gourmet) and the Mastercook CD. I still need to look into these to see if it will be beneficial for us to use these products to plan our cooking adventures.
Homeschooling the Gifted Child
This workshop was given by Mr. Howe of Moving Beyond the Page. I was really interested in this one because we suspect that we have a gifted child. Now before you think that I am being arrogant, I have to say that the opposite is the case. Having a gifted child is not a bed of roses. They are very challenging to raise and oftentimes our gifted one stretches me beyond my limits. I went to this workshop out of desperation. Mr. Howe's talk did confirm for me some of the challenges that we have been going through are related to giftedness. He gave tips on how to manage it all...for example, when explaining a math problem give your child several different methods for solving the problem and then let him choose what works best for him. That way you avoid the questioning of authority that is typically in gifted kids.
What's After 8th? (Grade, that is!)
Tammy Duby of Tobin's Lab presented this workshop and it was my favorite. I still have a couple more years before high school hits us, but I thought this might give me some ideas to think about to get ready for it. Here are some of the resources that she mentioned as being invaluable to pulling together high school. I have not looked into all of this yet, but will soon.
Sr. High: A Home Designed Form+U+La by Barb Shelton
Chalk Dust has an excellent Math Prep DVD set for getting ready for the SAT. They also sell 10 REAL SAT's. Taking the SAT's will increase a student's score.
Thomas Edison College You can do correspondence and CLEP testing to get your college degree.
CLEP Testing Earn college credit by testing instead of taking the class! (I did this in high school. It was so worth it!!)
One last tip: 30-40 minutes of homeschool high school work is like 50-60 minutes of public school (Being a former high school teacher, I can testify to the truth of this! So much time is wasted in public school.)

So I have a lot of resources to look into over the next few weeks!

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