Happy Thanksgiving!

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Scratch is a great way to start teaching kids how to program; the sky is not even close to the limit. It allows kids (and adults, alike) to explore their creativity in the form of games, animation, music, and much more. See Primo’s (a.k.a. RedNeckSideKick) page here and Secondo’s page is here. Here is more »

Limiting “Screen Time”

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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, more »

10 Reasons NOT to Homeschool

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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 more »

Extra Curricular: “Dangerous” Play is Okay

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When they are not studying hard, we keep both Primo and Secondo busy with extra curricular activities. We feel this is essential to a healthy life balance (all work and no play …). Evermore we continue to hear about public forums banning our childhood favorites: dodgeball, tetherball, tag, … face more »

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

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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 more »

“Creation” Writing

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In the beginning, Primo detested writing. But, with the help of BraveWriter’s The Arrow program his reluctance is waning quickly. If you remember our post on Fusing Skills: Writing, Math, and Science the focus was, obviously, technical. This week’s effort is a bit more creative. The topic was stories of creation based on more »

Extra Curricular Activities: SPARK Programming From Scratch

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Every once in a while we hit it big with the extra curricular activities. Today was particularly good as Primo (disguised as RedNeckSideKick) and RocketRedNeck attended a SPARK (Simple Programming, Animation & Robotics for Kids) session at the University of Arizona. While Primo has acquired a lot of programming experience more »

Kids’ Book Reviews

We really love to read around here. Part of encouraging the boys to read consciously is to have them tell us about what they have read, either by chapter or full book. Rather than a traditional book report we are encouraging them to summarize and review the books in a more »

Fusing Skills: Writing, Math, and Science

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Since we’ve found bravewriter.com things have been starting to turn around in the writing department. We’ve learned to relax and let things develop a little more naturally (especially on those Friday Free Writes). However, today we did it on a Thursday! I decided that it would be good to use Primo’s more »

Jot It Down: The Story of the Hahiko Fish

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One of the cool concepts we’ve picked up from bravewriter.com is the concept of “jotting it down” when the little ones tell us stories; i.e., catching your child in that act of thinking. This really helps them see how ideas transform into words. The Story of the Hahiko Fish By more »