Summer

Cicadas, Teachable Moments, and Great Memories

The other day, my son and I were busy cleaning up some branches we had clipped from the bushes. As I was trudging through the heat, I suddenly realized he wasn’t working anymore. I was getting more than a little irritated when I heard him say, “Hey, Mom. Come look at this.” After the crazy-busy year we had this past year, I’ve learned to

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Firefly Unit Study

You know it’s finally summer when you see fireflies start to light up the night. Every year, my kids (no matter how old) still try to catch them, always being careful and letting them go again. Here are a few fun facts about fireflies: Fireflies are actually beetles. There are about 2,000 species of fireflies. Each species has a unique flash pattern. Fireflies only live for

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Schooling Through the Summer

Every year, I have the best intentions of finishing up in a timely manner. Sometimes we start after Labor Day; other years we start in the middle of August. But no matter when we start the school year, we never finish by June. Unexpected life events seem to throw us off “the schedule” each time, no matter how prepared I am. So now, it’s part

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Homeschooling Through the Summer

Homeschooling Through the Summer I start ever year with good intentions, great anticipation, and high hopes that we’ll actually finish all the work by the end of May. And every year, we are still working on things (usually math) through June and sometimes into July. Then August comes around, and it’s time to start up again. School for us just naturally goes year-round. But

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Nature Questions

This summer, we have had two different types of birds visiting our front porch. Each chose a different corner of the porch to build a nest – a good safe place out of harm’s way. Or so we thought. Birds #1 The first pair of parents were Carolina Wrens. They build a more enclosed nest, so we couldn’t see the hatchlings very well. But

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Be a Picture Book Critiquer

Our library’s summer reading program requires that elementary students read for ten hours or forty books to win the Level One prize (they have to read even more for the next prize). That’s a lot of books for my youngest to finish on his own, so we alternate between easy readers that he reads himself and picture books that I read to him. Although

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Summer Break

The last day of “school” translates into so many ways for homeschool families. For us, it’s fluid throughout the year, with extra schedule flexibility in the summer to accommodate spontaneous outings with school friends. In the summer, most kids go to the beach, play sports, fishing, camps and park outings. Simply, all the things they were not able to do because they were in

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Cool Parties for the Summer

Like many parts of the country, we’re experiencing unusually high temperatures during these summer days. While we love being outdoors, it’s hard to spend time outside when the weather is so hot. If you’re looking for ways for your children to stay cool this summer, why not plan a party? Plan a Pool Party:  If you have a pool in your backyard, invite your

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Summer Reading for Elementary Students

Whether or not your children are working on school lessons the summer, it’s still a good time to keep them reading. Often, libraries will have summer reading programs or contests for kids to keep them motivated. If you’re looking for some good books for your children but aren’t sure where to start, ask your librarian for a recommended reading list. Or, even better, ask

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