Blogs about homeschooling

Is Homeschool Lesson Planning Eating Up Your Time?

a woman holds a large clock, obscuring her face

Are you trying to find more hours in the day, unable to find just a few minutes to spend chatting about life with your teenage daughter, play games with your middle school son, or bake cookies with your preschool kids because you’re spending every free moment lesson planning?

Lesson planning can eat up hours a day. There’s the time to research what should be included, find appropriate books, read the books to ensure everything is included. Then you still need to write the lesson plans.

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You Need to Know These Wonderful Benefits of Boxed Curriculum

Benefits of Boxed Curriculum

In homeschooling circles, boxed curriculum is also known as an all-in-one educational program. One company provides the materials you need for all core subjects for an entire school year, often in one large box. When you purchase a package like this, you receive the necessary student books, an in-depth teacher’s guide and schedule and, frequently, any additional readers and supplies you’ll need to complete all of the lessons throughout the year.

Many parents find that the teacher’s manual included in this type of curriculum is worth its weight in gold.

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Playing with Poems: Making Poetry Enjoyable

Many times parents and children alike view the study of poetry as they might think of taking cough syrup: “I don’t like it, but I know I need it.” However, this negative perspective does not have to be the case. Poetry can be fun, engaging, and educational, but it all depends on where you begin.

A better analogy for poetry might be that it is like trying a new food. You are hesitant, unsure, and a little afraid at first, but the results are delicious, and the food can become a new favorite.

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7 Awesome Tips for Homeschooling a Large Family

Homeschooling a Large Family

7 Awesome Tips for Homeschooling a Large Family

Keeping a large family focused and moving forward while homeschooling is a difficult task. One child wants to play with LEGOs, another child needs to potty train, and yet a third wants you to explain algebra. There are so many needs and so many opinions. How do you juggle it all?

Work from a detailed schedule which begins when you wake up and ends when you go to bed. Time is allotted for chores, meals, playtime, and homeschooling. You’ll never be able to follow the schedule exactly, but the schedule will form the framework of your daily routine. Everything that needs to be done will get done.

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Surviving Long Road Trips with Reading

Surviving Long Road Trips with Reading

As I type, I am currently about 1800 miles away from my home in Minneapolis. Because my husband had to work and I needed to experience some adventure this summer, I decided to be brave (or maybe crazy), and hit the road with my four kids—all the way from Minnesota to Glacier Park, Montana. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I’m sure the ride home will be just as great. But without looking too far into the distance, I thought I should let you in on a little secret: reading is the key to a successful long car ride.

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Inspiration and Ideas to Organize Homeschool Learning Spaces

Everyone organizes differently for a new homeschool year, but we all want creative learning spaces that are both functional and fun.

Discover unconventional ways of organizing by arranging furniture differently. Take two open backed book cases and lay them sidewise. Butt them back to back. Place a large finished out piece of wood on top of the bookcases. Use a few nails to keep the top in place, and you have a beautiful work table with open storage below.

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When to Buy and When to Borrow Books

old fashioned library checkout cards in pockets

I walk into a new book store, and take a whiff. I find a seat, pull out a book, and read. Taking in the sights and smells that surround me, I revel in the smell and feel of a new book.

We are a family of readers, and most of the time we have a book in our hands. However, I rarely buy new books. One reason is of course to save money, but the other is that, quite frankly, we don’t have the space.

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Narrowing Your Homeschool Focus

one sharp pencil tip rises among pencil ends

As home educators, we struggle with self-doubt, wondering if we are teaching our children the right things at the right time. There are plenty of models to pull from: public school, private schools, curriculum publishers, etc. But if we are not careful, we can become burdened by feeling we must fit it all into our schedule.

Realizing that I can focus on only a few things well as a teacher, I chose to narrow my yearly homeschool focus to one or two overarching goals each year.

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3 Ways To Protect Your Time As a Homeschooler

3 Ways To Protect Your Time As a Homeschooler Once you are homeschooling, you realize how easy it can be to adopt a fluid sense of time. In fact, you might sometimes lose track of what day of the week or hour of the day it is when you remove yourself from a traditional school schedule! However, with that flexible perspective on time comes a need for being more particular about the ins and outs of our day. Otherwise, we become so fluid that we end up wasting our precious hours.

Are you super careful to protect your time or are you extremely casual with the hours in your day?

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5 Fantastic Vocabulary Game Ideas

letter tiles spell out the word "words"

In our homeschool, my children constantly encounter new vocabulary words during their individual reading time or during lessons. My naturally curious kids are great about asking, “What does this word mean, Mom?” Typically I ask them to look it up using an online dictionary.

But sometimes we use them our new words in one of these five fantastic vocabulary games.

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