Archives for December 2010

Remembering 2010 on Simple Homeschool

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom

One year ago I had a giddy secret under wraps that I was excitedly preparing for–becoming the editor of a new blog called Simple Homeschool.

It has been an incredible privilege to write here for you, to share your thoughts and sometimes your worries, and to see the virtual community that has quickly grown in this space.

I want to send out a huge thanks to all of you readers who make this such a fun place to work. And in honor of 2010’s journey, or if you missed any of it along the way, here are ten of the most popular posts from this year.
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What the “Experts” Would Do Differently

Written by Lora Lynn Fanning of Vitafamiliae

One of my favorite questions to ask homeschool moms who are ahead of me on the path is “What would you do differently?  If you could go back, is there something you did that you wish you could change?”

As the calendar year draws to a close and we all reflect on the way we’ve spent our time, here’s a collection of thoughts from several “been there, done that” homeschool moms:

1. From Mary Ostyn, author and mother to ten kids:

“As a brand new homeschooling mom 16 years ago, I spent a lot of effort putting together a ‘classroom’, right down to the chalkboard, American flag, and desks.  What I didn’t know then is that homeschool doesn’t have to look like traditional school to be effective.

The couch is the coziest place in the world for reading class, and math can be done perfectly well while lying on your tummy on the bedroom floor.  Eventually we gave away the desks, and took down the chalkboard to make room for something homeschoolers really need:  more bookshelves!”

2. From Jamie Martin, author and our fearless editor of Simple Homeschool:

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New Year’s Resolutions: Choosing Purposeful Words for Your Family in 2011

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom

The new year stands peeking its head around the corner and now that Christmas is over, it’s the next event in line for our attention. This means party planning, resolution making, staying up late, and getting back in the homeschool saddle after a holiday break.

It’s also a natural time to consider where we are, where we’re going, and how we’re going to get there. Instead of resolutions many thoughtful bloggers, like Ali Edwards and Gretchen Rubin, recommend choosing one meaningful word to focus on for your new year.

Last year I did this as well. I chose the word “anticipation,” and 2010 has certainly lived up to it.

This year I’m thinking about words, not just for myself, but for my entire family. What key ideas define us and our purpose? Brainstorming your own list of words is another way to craft a family mission statement.

Having a completed list clearly narrows down the bombardment of choices you have to deal with in your day-to-day lives. It makes refocusing easier when you stumble off track or lose your way temporarily. It also simplifies your homeschool planning as you seek to find which curriculum or educational philosophy fits with who you are as a family unit.

Need a little help getting started? Read on to see a sampling of my family’s purposeful words:
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3 Days Till Christmas: 3 Activities Worth Doing

Written by Simple Homeschool contributor Renee Tougas of FIMBY.

With only three days left till Christmas it’s time to take a reality check and revisit your holiday priority list. For me, that means axing those non-essentials near the bottom that I haven’t been able to finish.

I’ll be shelving those supplies for the last minute gift I had hoped to make. And finally making peace with the bare evergreen wreath, hanging still undecorated on the front door.

I know I can’t do everything, but there are some simple activities worth making time for in these last three days.

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Q&A Monday: What’s on Your Holiday Menu?

Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and founder of Steady Mom

Homeschooling isn’t really on my mind this week. I’m guessing that for the most part, it’s not on yours either.

So let’s just admit it and move on to what is filling much of our thoughts:

Food. (Among other things like family time, giving, and unity, of course!)

I spent part of the weekend writing lists and shopping for ingredients. We don’t travel over the holidays, so the preparations for our family’s Christmas dinner rests on our own shoulders. As the children get older and can help out, I find that I enjoy this time more and more each year.

Here’s what we’ll be serving up in a few days.

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