How much should your push your sensitive homeschooler?

Written by Kara Anderson of Quill and Camera

I used to do this thing when my kids were small.

When we would enter a busy place, I would sort of situate them in front of me, and waddle behind them, steering their shoulders as we navigated the room or store or farmer’s market.

I thought this made sense because if they were in front of me, I could see them. There was less chance of losing them in the crowd.

The problem, of course, was that I was sending a toddler or pre-schooler into the fray ahead of me, with no idea what sorts of sights, sounds and smells they would encounter.

More than once a little one turned around, threw their arms around my kneecaps and started wailing.

How did it possibly take me so long to figure out my mistake – that I was literally pushing my kids into all sorts of unknown situations?

This sort of push-waddle-steer might not be a big issue for a lot of kids.

Eager kids.

Excited kids.

Kids who would view Disney World as a dream come true instead of a scary, loud, sensory disaster, for instance.

Somebody else’s kids.

But for my kids, doing this was overwhelming and scary.

When I finally realized my mistake I did things differently, and the results were very different. They could enter situations feeling safe and confident.

They knew I was there. That’s a big deal.
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10 things every new homeschooler should know

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10 things every new homeschooler should know
Written by Jamie Martin of Simple Homeschool and Steady Mom

I never know exactly how to answer when someone asks me how long we’ve been homeschooling.

“Since the beginning,” goes over pretty well.
“We always have,” gets a fair response.
My holistic view of learning used to lead me to say “since birth,” but that one raised some eyebrows here and there.

But if someone, wanting a more technical response, counts the time since my oldest would have started Kindergarten, that makes this our eighth year of learning at home! No matter how you slice it, I guess I’m not a newbie anymore.

I still remember those days well, though. The insecurity, the worries, the thoughts of inadequacy. (Oh wait, that was just last night!!)

I’m crazy far from being an expert on the matter, but the past several years have taught me a few things I’d like to pass on to every new homeschooler.

I hope they bring comfort to those of you getting started.
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The biggest problem in our homeschool is me

Written by Shawna Wingert of Not the Former Things.

When we first started homeschooling five years ago, I thought I had it all figured out.

I had a school room with a lovely, perfectly organized set of books, curriculum, and manipulatives. I had a bell, all set and ready to ring for start time, break time, and lunch time.

It was going to be amazing.

And it was.

For exactly one day.

Then reality hit. My children did not do well in a school environment. It was one of the reasons they were no longer going to school. So why was I trying to recreate that exact environment in our home?

The answer?

I am consistently the biggest problem in our homeschool journey.

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10 things I’ve learned in 10 years of homeschooling

Written by Hannah Vanderpool of Praying with One Eye Open

I’ve noticed something about my fellow homeschoolers. As a family’s kids get older, the parents tend to get quieter online, at least where homeschooling is concerned.

It’s probably not because they’ve run out of ideas for how to incorporate science into their teenagers’ days, or because there aren’t plenty of funny one-liners they could report.

It’s probably because those of us with older kids sense that our teens need increased privacy, and that, before long, their educational journeys in our homes will come to an end.

And, anyway, if we think about it, we’re just glad blogs didn’t exist when we were their age.


I’m one of those moms who felt like there was plenty to discuss when I was homeschooling 5-, 6-, and 7- year-olds. But now that my husband and I have a teenager, I suddenly feel at a loss for what to add to the online conversation.

There are stories I can’t tell these days — struggles that will stay between our own four walls out of respect for my kids.

The truth is that when I talk about homeschooling now, I end up talking about me, not math. I write about how I hope all the years at home have served my kids well, hoping I’ve done enough of this or that, or that I’ve said enough “I’m sorrys.”

Will the future be kind to me, I wonder, as I see this strange and sweet chapter nearing its last few pages?

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How to teach your kids to cook (with a cooking course printable)

Written by Jamie Martin of Simple Homeschool and Steady Mom

When I graduated from high school in 1994, I had a 4.0 GPA, was a member of the National Honor Society, and shortly afterwards received a complete scholarship to a local university.

I had never made a full meal for myself or anyone else.

I hope to give my children a more holistic education, one that’s relevant both in the classroom and in real life.

That’s why a few years ago I invited my kids to begin a formal baking class as part of their homeschool.

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I wrote about our experience on the blog, and it became one of the most popular posts at that time. The following year I also documented Jonathan’s graduation from his baking class, and how the entire experience had been a positive one.

Since that time, my daughter Trishna also graduated from her baking class. Some of her closest friends  came to celebrate her hard work and sample all the goodies she had learned to make:
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