A photo of Kelly Sage

Kelly Sage

Kelly left teaching middle and high school English to homeschool her children and reclaim how she and her family spent their time. Followers of interest-led learning, her family's days rarely look the same, but they tend to include a lot of books, art supplies, and time outside.

Kelly facilitates local writing circles for women and children and blogs about nurturing the love of learning on her blog, Curiosity Encouraged. She loves to journal, read memoirs, hike, and travel. She seeks quiet mornings and good coffee daily.

How BookShark Science Makes My Daughter a Stronger Reader

How BookShark Science Makes My Daughter a Stronger ReaderMy daughter grabs her BookShark binder and the Science book she’s currently reading. I grab my Instructor’s Guide and tell her which pages and questions we’ll be doing. She flips to the pages we’ll be reading today; immediately her questions and comments begin flowing.

Beautifully illustrated or photographed, all of the books capture her attention. “Let’s read and find out more,” I say. She doesn’t hesitate and either hands the book my way or begins to read herself. We take turns reading to each other.

Read more

7 Strategies for Teaching Your Reluctant Reader to Love Reading

boy sits with head on hands

I started reading to my children even before they were born. Can you imagine? Picture me, reading to my growing belly. Almost every room of our house has books in baskets, stacked in corners, and layered on shelves. The public library is like our home away from home. The people who lug heavy bags of books up to the return window and take forever at checkout?

We are those people. Both of my children love books. Yet, despite being read to almost every day of his life, my oldest hated to read.

Read more

Taking the Groans out of Studying Poetry

Taking the Groans out of Studying Poetry

Have you ever mentioned poetry and heard a groan? Every single time I told my students we’d be starting a poetry unit, the room filled with a chorus of nos. My students, like many people, found poetry boring and hard to understand. Poetry was a language they believed they did not speak.

I understood exactly where they were coming from. Until I took a teaching writing class in college, I stayed as far away from poetry as I could. What changed?

Read more

Keeping a Homeschool Bullet Journal: A Beginner's Guide

homeschool planner pages sit atop BookShark Instructor's Guide pages

Homeschoolers are record keepers! Depending on our state’s requirements and personal preference we fill folders and boxes, create portfolios and transcripts, write lesson plans, make charts, take hundreds of pictures, maybe even blog.

Here in Indiana, even though I’m not required to turn records into the state, I keep my children’s projects, encourage their goals, and document their learning. I want to capture our time together. I want my children to see and remember their progress. And when doubt sets in as to whether or not I’m doing enough with them, my records remind me that yes! Yes, I am.

Read more

Why It's Okay for Kids to Redo Their Work and Retake Tests

pencil eraser on paper

Why It's Okay for Kids to Redo Their Work and Retake TestsRoald Dahl said, “By the time I am nearing the end of a story, the first part will have been reread and altered and corrected at least one hundred and fifty times. I am suspicious of both facility and speed. Good writing is essentially rewriting. I am positive of this.”

While I believe Dahl is right, if my children thought they needed to revise a story one hundred and fifty times to produce good writing, they’d never pick up a pencil again. But if not one hundred and fifty times, then how many?

Read more

3 Ways BookShark Virtual Nudges Students Towards Independent Learning

3 Ways BookShark Virtual Nudges Students Towards Independent LearningWe help our children strive for independence from pretty much day one. When our kids hold their heads up or roll over for the first time, we celebrate. We help them learn to walk, talk, write their names, and read. We guide them through social situations, giving them the tools they need to engage politely and communicate clearly.

We teach them with an eye towards independence because eventually, they will be on their own.

Read more

5 Ways BookShark Virtual Makes Roadschooling Easier

5 Ways BookShark Virtual Makes Roadschooling EasierEver since my oldest decided to go back to school, I’ve mourned the days when our schedule was our own and we traveled off-season whenever we wanted. I loved the lack of crowds, the discounted pricing, and how spontaneous we could be. I also loved how we could take our learning with us wherever we went. When we visited family or joined my husband on a work trip, we could maintain a familiar structure to our day. BookShark is now making homeschooling on the road a lot easier. BookShark Virtual allows students to tap into their lessons and assignments anywhere with internet access! So whether you’ll be vacationing for a week or traveling for a year, BookShark Virtual makes it easy for students and parents to homeschool.

Read more

Help! Our Science Experiment Failed

a girl makes green slime

Help! Our Science Experiment FailedToday is science experiment day. You’ve collected all of the necessary supplies, you have instructions, and your kids are excited! This experiment is going to be so much fun, you think, patting yourself on the back.

Hands-on science for the win!

Or not, because something goes wrong: The seeds don’t sprout. The seeds mold or die before your kids take measurements.

Read more

Four Reasons to Keep Homeschooling Even After Schools Reopen

a girl works on school work on her bed, a laptop open beside her

Four Reasons to Keep Homeschooling Even After Schools ReopenWhile some of us have known the benefits of learning at home long before Covid19, many people, maybe even you, are unexpectedly homeschooling and unexpectedly loving it. Just the other day, while talking with one of my cousins on Zoom, he told me when I left teaching to homeschool he thought I was crazy. Smiling into the camera, he shook his head and said, “Now I know you were brilliant. This is awesome!”

More and more, I’m hearing friends and family, who once “could never homeschool” or “would never want to homeschool” change their minds.

Read more

You Don’t Have to Do it All: How to Adjust Your BookShark Curriculum

a bookshark binder sits on a wooden background

You Don’t Have to Do it All: How to Adjust Your Bookshark Curriculum I’ll admit it; the giant blue binder that came with my daughter’s BookShark Reading with History curriculum was a little overwhelming. I remember unboxing day. While my kid flipped through her new books, excited by all the stories she was going to read, I unwrapped a ream of paper—my Instructor’s Guide.

Never having had success with a boxed curriculum before, I’ll admit, I was a little skeptical. I wanted a curriculum we could do together and enjoy, not one that required a ton of prep on my part.

Read more