Fusing Curriculum: Sphinxes, Gods, and Mummies – Oh My!

Home education offers us the opportunity to fuse subjects around a central topic. This is not an unschooled approach, but rather an education of opportunity. Currently we are in ancient Egyptian overload, but when you find a topic that interests the student it is probably best to squeeze as much out of … Continue reading

International Ice Cream For Breakfast Day and Other Awesome Silliness

What do you do when you just need to be silly? It may seem silly, especially in winter, but when GranolaGirl and I lived in Colorado our favorite time to walk down to Baskin Robbins for a cone was during a snow storm. We don’t get the opportunity often in … Continue reading

Coaching the Reluctant Student

Secondo is our reluctant student and natural contrarian. GranolaGirl has often joked when Secondo was a toddler that he was really a cantankerous 80-year-old Frenchman in a 2-year-old body, and he was not-at-all pleased with the situation. Part of the difficulties stem from multiple double-ear infections starting at about 11 … Continue reading

Coaching the Lethargic Writer

I find much irony in a child that loves to read, and can express himself verbally, yet resists writing. An even greater irony is the latest challenge surrounding a book report on The Phantom Tollbooth, by Norton Juster. Primo read the book about three years ago, but picked it up … Continue reading

Kidnapped! (Reading and Writing Tales of Woe)

The latest round of reading and writing with Primo has been … challenging. If you remember from our post “The Same, But Different” we were struggling with getting Primo to read Robert Louis Stevenson’s Kidnapped. He didn’t like the abridged version, as it seemed “rushed”, but delving into the original text … Continue reading

Limiting “Screen Time”

The pediatricians at the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have spoken (again): Children should be limited to less than 2 hours of “screen-time” per day. Of course they do make a critical distinction in their statement, that the “screen-time” being limited is entertainment-based. My father was a former AAP board pediatrician, … Continue reading

10 Reasons NOT to Homeschool

I was planning on writing a “Ten Reasons to Homeschool” list; the list of all the reasons is long and it has taken some time to think of my favorites. And, I’ll have to admit that we like homeschooling so much that it was getting difficult to think of a humorous … Continue reading

The Same, But Different (Abridged vs Classic vs Modern Literature)

Several years ago, when we first started educating Primo and Secondo at home, we set out to fill our library with the classics that we remembered, as well as a few we never got around to reading ourselves (gasp :-0). In some cases we bought abridged or adaptations of the classics that … Continue reading

A Tale of Two Children: Readiness for Readin’, ‘ritin’, and ‘rithmetic

I never understood the “Three R’s” label for reading, writing, and arithmetic. I am sure that someone thought it was cute at one point, but, looking at the state of education in the country today, the joke may be on us. Certainly without these basics no other course of study is possible, but one … Continue reading

How we ended up Home “Schooling”

I dislike the term “home schooling” and prefer the term “home educating.” For me the concept of what school is supposed to be has been corrupted over the last 150 years or so. So, for now, it is sufficient to identify “school” as a place of emotional, intellectual, and creative … Continue reading