A photo of Betsy Strauss

Betsy Strauss

Betsy Strauss is a wife to a deep thinker and a homeschooling mom of three kids.  When she stumbled into homeschooling, she thought it would just look like public school at home. Thankfully, she quickly learned that using a one-room schoolhouse model of teaching was a great way to unify the family, and enrich family life without going crazy! She shares her encouragement on Family Style Schooling Blog.

How Saxon Math Prepares Moms to Teach Math All the Way Through High School

When I first started homeschooling, one of my greatest fears was that I would not know enough to adequately teach my kids up to and all the way through the high school years. It's a common fear.

The good news is that you have many years to prepare for upper level maths, and if you follow a path like Saxon lays out for you, you'll be ready.

Read more

Strategies to Help Your Children Reach Maximum Potential

a girl dressed in a blue shirt holds a clear fishbowl with a vibrant orange goldfish

Secrets of an Organized Homeschool Mom

There is a myth that claims, "You can be anything you want to be." Many adults joining the workforce are quickly discouraged by a reality that doesn't match that childhood imagination. While a college degree might have guaranteed you a job twenty years ago, times have changed.

It is challenging for us as parents and teachers not to get discouraged about the harsh realities awaiting our children when we send them into the world.

Read more

Explore Australia with These Fascinating Streaming Videos

Australia is home to some of the most fascinating creatures on earth. Even though it’s the smallest continent on the planet, it’s home to some of the most beautiful vistas and most deadly creatures. If you’re looking for a way to pique curiosity in your animal loving kids and complement your literature-based study of the Land Down Under from BookShark Level 5, check out these excellent streaming videos.

Explore Australian Wildlife Wild Australia with Ray Mears

TV-PG, 6 Episodes, 23 min (available on Netflix)

Read more

Why I Still Homeschool (Even When My Original Reasons are Moot)

I never thought I would homeschool my children. Understandably, I followed what I knew. As a child, I had fond memories of my elementary school years. My mom frequently volunteered in my class, and I was prepared to follow in her footsteps. However, when my oldest started kindergarten, I didn't find it as easy to get involved as I had hoped. For one, teachers didn

Read more

Upgrade Your Homeschool Portfolio by Going Digital

Recently I inherited a stack of treasures my husband’s mother had saved from his childhood school years. Artifacts included handwriting samples, artwork, and test scores. Although it was fun to see, my home was already bursting at the seams with collections of my own children’s past work. It piles up very quickly. That is why we decided to go digital with our homeschool portfolios.

Even though I don’t live in a state that requires me to turn in a portfolio each year, I do have an eleventh grader who will require a high school transcript. I am not as faithful at recording grades as I would like to be, but with an online collection of my son’s work, I have a convenient place to locate all the information I need to accurately assess his performance in a subject over the course of a year. Here’s how we manage our online portfolios.

Read more

Why I Don't DEAR (Drop Everything and Read)

a girl with long hair and a red and white striped shirt leans around a tall stack of books

Teaching reading was my greatest fear as I contemplated homeschooling. Could I do it? What if I messed it up? What if I turned my kids off of reading forever?

Of course, teaching a child to read is not nearly as difficult as you may expect. And all of my children are proficient readers! What I've found over my years of interacting with my readers is that there is really only one element that is key to helping someone find success in reading — quality time with a mentor.

Read more