October 5, 2015

My homeschooling is NOT a reflection of you

periscope broadcast
My homeschooling is NOT a reflection of you
So I did it! I took the plunge and did my very first periscope. I will admit it's not very good. I was nervous, thoughts I had planned out in my head didn't come out of my mouth.

It's it funny how you can have a whole conversation in your head and when it's time to speak you loose it.

Things to do different next time:

  • make a list of power points I want to talk about. Actually write it down!
  • have more a prep time. I decided last night I was really going to do this thing and picked this morning as the date. What I should have done was give myself more time to focus in on what I wanted to discuss.
In the grand scheme of things it wasn't horrible, but it wasn't what I planned on in my head.  I was going to focus on how my homeschooling is not a reflection on you and I was going to address what to do with those awkward moments when you tell someone you homeschool and they give you a litany of reasons they don't homeschool. Or how your homeschooling can be different from other homeschoolers and they or you shouldn't feel bad for not homeschooling the same way even if using the same materials.

I wanted to point that you shouldn't feel bad for choosing to homeschool that even when you are 8 years into it, like me, you are still going to be faced with people that will give you a litany of reasons why they can't homeschool, or all of the sudden get defensive. It's okay they do that. You don't have to take it personal. Just know that what I'm doing with my children is not a reflection of you and your parenting, your choices, and your lifestyle.

That is where I wanted to go that is where I wanted to talk about, but I spent more time rambling about why my son is in public school this year and myself then anything else. The result really of not being fully prepared for today.

See for yourself! You can "katch" the replay on my katch me page or you can see it below. 

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something.

September 30, 2015

Just a homeschooler - Not a know it all

not a know it all
Just a homeschooler - Not a know it all
Homeschoolers by nature, I think, are genuinely helpful people, enjoy helping others, enjoy giving advice, enjoy giving out pointers, and being there for others.  I know this to be true because of my blog, other homeschoolers blogs, and being apart of the homeschooling community for the last several years. It's great to have friends (even if they are just on facebook) to turn to for help, advice, tips, support, etc.  It's great knowing depending on the platform, group, or forum you can have access to 10, 20, 50, 100, 5,000 or even 20,000 plus other homeschoolers. Homeschoolers that might not share all your values, but they have one thing in common with you: They homeschool and love their children. Okay 2 things in common....

With all this access I see a disturbing trend:  Expecting these homeschooling friends, groups, forums, to be your ONE stop shop for EVERYTHING! Expecting these circles to essentially be your research department, your doctor, your gardening expert, your bug expert, your --- do I dare say --- your GOOGLE!

This is very frustrating! While homeschoolers are helpful, willing to help, they are not experts on every topic.  Need to know what type of bugs those are? Google, search a bug ID site, ask a local bug guy, go to the library get bug ID books. Need to know what type of apples that tree is and if they are edible? Go ask a local small business, family owned, apple orchard, seek out library books, seek help from a gardening or canning group.  Need help ID mushrooms.... well you get the point.

I'm just seeing a trend where to many people expect other homeschoolers do things that they should be able to do themselves.  -- Part of homeschooling is teaching your child how to research things, how to find information, know where to turn when you don't know the answers. While your peers might be helpful on giving you pointers on where to find information they should NOT be called upon for the answers for everything under the sun -- unless they are experts, it's their hobby, etc.

When I looked into homeschooling several years ago I read either in a book, blog, website or newspaper article -- okay maybe not a newspaper article -- that homeschoolers like to be helpful, but they don't want to be bothered with questions you can find yourself.  They rather you spend time trying to research it, find the answer yourself, and if you can't then ask for help.

When I first read it I thought it was referring to homeschooling laws, curriculum, schedules, routines, etc. Now, I think it means much more then that. It means stop relying on your homeschool circles to be your Google and stop asking them for  help for things that are better suited in other forums and quit "hiding" behind the label while it's for school there for it apply to homeschooling.

I've been in this game for a long while. I know that homeschooling is a lifestyle and under that premise anything under the sun is really apart of the homeschooling -- but use some common sense. You wouldn't go to the auto shop looking for a bug exterminator. You wouldn't go to drug store and ask to speak to the pharmacist about your car issues.  While I love all of  you and I'm glad to help when I can and will continue to do so: I'm just a homeschooler - Not a know it all!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something.

September 24, 2015

Fast line to the driving years

teen drivers
Driving in the fast lane
It's hard to believe that I'm within a year of having my children be at least student drivers with learning permits.  This notion scares me.

1. My kids old enough to drive?
2. I'm not old enough to have children drivers.
3. I'm not ready for this.

Did I mention I'm not old enough to have children drivers?  My son 14 is counting down the days for when he's eligible to get his permit. Once that happens it won't belong for my daughter because they are only 10 months apart.  I'm not ready for this!!

In addition to being ready for this my children have said things recently when driving around that honestly scares me and makes me wonder if they are really ready for this.  For example while returning from home from the grocery store, my daughter exclaims "There's a corn field there? When did that get there? Has it always been there?"  Or getting out of the car from the store parking lot "As those houses always been there?"  My son is also asking similar questions.  Ummm --- hello we have lived in this area for practically your whole life. These things have always been here -- well some of of them are new, but I promise you the cornfield has always been there and I promise you those house have been there for as long as you can remember -- meaning they were built when you were babies -- but that was nearly 15 years ago -- so yeah they have pretty much been there.

Then I pointed out how those storage sheds across from the corn field are new, they are being built now, only to be met with "There is a construction site there too?"  Oh good gravy --- what am I going to do? This is an area you are familiar with, we drive these roads often -- what's going to happen when it's NOT a familiar road, path, surrounding? I am sincerely worried. Why haven't my children been more aware of their surroundings until now.

There is a construction site in front of the Wal-Mart here now. Nothing has happened yet just a fence around some grass with a sign that states it's a construction site and you need permit to enter within the fence area. Giving my children's lack of awareness I made a point to make them aware of the the construction site.  "Look, kids that is a construction site. That means something will be built there" Last thing I need is to go to Wal-Mart one day with them only to hear them say "When did that get here?"

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something.

September 23, 2015

The amazing transformation from liquid to solid

Amazing transformation from liquid to solid
Today in science we discussed the difference between: solid, liquid, gas, and plasma.  We also learned about amorphous.  Amorphous is the state where an object is not really a liquid or solid. It's in between.  An example of this is glass and while we don't think of glass as being amorphous it really is and that's why windows that are REALLY, really old are thinner at the top and thicker at the bottom. The glass after several years (hundreds) will slowly shift to the bottom. The glass in your windows at home are doing this now, but -- you really can't see it.

One thing you can do, at home, to help illustrate this point even though it's NOT a true amorphous solid (it's a non-newtonian fluid) is to make oobleck.  Oobleck is made with two common household ingredients: water and corn starch and get its name form the Dr Suess' book Bartholomew and the Oobleck.

Oobleck is about 1 part corn starch to about 1.5/2 parts water, meaning if you use 1 cup corn starch you will want use about 1.5 to 2 cups water. If you use 3 cups corn starch you will want to use 4.5 to 6 cups water. This is a fun thing for even your teens to play with!!!

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something.

September 17, 2015

Gift from my son: Mushroom Identification

Yesterday, my son did some volunteer work at the local library. The volunteer work was arranged by his scout troop so going also gave him service hours credit for scouts. This volunteer work was setting up books for the upcoming book sale and as a thank-you the boys were allowed to pick out a book and received a cup of ice cream from the local homemade ice cream parlor next door to the library.

After he was done with setting up books he met me at another part of the library. As he approached I noticed a book in his hand. He has set up for previous book sales before but never came out with a book.  I was excited to see he found something that interested him.

"Cool, you found a book! What's it's about?"

"It's not for me. It's for you and it's about identifying mushrooms"

Well, my mother's heart just skipped a beat! My son actually thought of me and remembered how, I in passing, mentioned about wanting to learn to ID mushrooms; so when he saw the mushroom field guide he knew I should have it.

Teens still care about their parents :)

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may receive a commission if you click a link and purchase something.
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