children

Studying the Slithery

About a week ago, my youngest found a small snake in our yard. In our area, snakes are beginning to hibernate as the colder weather sets in, so it was an unusual find. After looking closely at our snake, we realized it was a harmless hognose, naturally prompting a snake study at my house. We found a lot of great resources online, and there’s

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Homeschool Conventions

Years ago, when my sister began homeschooling, Bob Jones University offered a week-long homeschooling conference for interested parents. The conference included classes for those just beginning as well as veteran homeschoolers. Those coming from out-of-town could also bring their children along for day camp programs hosted by the university. Not only did parents learn tips and techniques, but they were able to meet and

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Science You Can Eat

Hands-on science projects involve questioning, observing, experimenting, and recording. While you may think you need a science lab or laboratory equipment to conduct a successful science experiment, think again — there are many things you can do in your own kitchen with items from the grocery store and common cooking utensils! In Science Experiments You Can Eat, author Vicki Cobb points out that cooking

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The Reason for a Flower

If you’re looking for a good starting place for a unit study about plants for your elementary students, The Reason for a Flower by Ruth Heller is a picture book worth checking out. Although this book contains a minimal amount of text, the text it does have introduces the students to many different aspects of plant life, including pollen and pollination; the parts of

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History for Younger Students

To me, the start of a new school year always seems full of possibilities as I plan the school days and what type of curricula we will use. Every summer I re-evaluate our books to see what worked, what didn’t work, and what we should try next, and each year the list of options continues to grow as new programs are made available on

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Teacher Created Resources

When I first began homeschooling, a friend of mine introduced me to unit studies, lessons that center around a particular topic that include activities from across the curriculum such as reading, writing, math, social studies, science, art, music, and/or life skills. These work especially well for children in the elementary grades, and as a homeschooling parent, you can choose topics of special interest to

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Family Pass to Learning

A few years ago, a friend of mine introduced us to the Western North Carolina Nature Center. It was there we discovered the white squirrels of Brevard and learned how to tell a male from a female box turtle. This was also our first visit to a butterfly garden, an enclosed area to walk through where butterflies fluttered all around and even landed on

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Lunchtime Read-Alouds

Unless we’re running a lot of errands, most days we’re home at lunchtime — one of our favorite times to read together. It’s become a fun time to share a book, especially since my children all have different bedtimes, and finding a good time to read together in the evening can be difficult. Once everyone’s lunch is ready, I pick up a longer book

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Incredible Art Lessons

I teach art lessons in my home during the school year, and I have some students who have been coming for a number of years. As I was searching the Internet for new lessons, I came upon IncredibleArt.org — an incredible site for art ideas! From the homepage, you can click on the “Lessons” link to enter the art lesson section. There you can

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Summer Reading for Older Students

Finding books for your middle school student or young adult can sometimes be difficult, as the content in some of the books may not be a good fit for your family. Authors of works for older kids will often try to “push the envelope” by including scenes or language you might feel are inappropriate for your children to read. How then, do you find

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