The Evolution of an Educational Philosophy: My Journey of Baby Steps

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

I wished I hadn’t shown up that day. But God knew better.

The late summer sun spun rainbows through the window of my minivan, as I sat in the parking lot of a church–journal and pen in hand. I had just attended my second homeschooling conference, and was completely freaked out.

Without knowing it, I had registered for a conference on unschooling–a term I had never heard before that day.

I wasn’t sure I ever wanted to hear it again.

What do you mean, children don’t need to be taught? How will they learn otherwise?

So before heading home, I took deep breaths and tried to make sense of this new information. Tried to rationalize it away with ink and words on paper.

If only I could go back and tell myself what I know now.
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Curriculum Choices: Handwriting Resources

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

Handwriting curriculum is one of the first purchases new homeschooling parents make, eager to get their child started off on the journey of communicating through the written word.

Learning to write their own name feels exciting and important to young children, so as parents it can seem like a big responsibility to choose the best resource.

Well worry no more! This post contains six of the most helpful, popular handwriting choices currently on the market. [Read more…]

7 Characteristics of a Charlotte Mason Education

If you’ve been homeschooling for long, you’ve undoubtedly heard of Charlotte Mason. Her educational principles, which she developed in 19th century England, offer much to homeschooling children and families alike.

But what exactly is a Charlotte Mason education? How can we know if it will work well for our family?
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Great Books for an Outdoors Education

Our family recently returned from our annual winter camping trip. Three wonderful days of backpacking, sleeping in a wood heated cabin, hiking to ocean lookouts, eating trail food, playing cards, sharing stories and many laughs. The woods and mountains, any time of year, are two of our family’s favorite places to be together.

Coming down from the natural high of that experience, and reflecting on the many other hikes we’ve had together, I believe strongly that an outdoors education isn’t about books at all.

It’s about actually being out there: tromping through the woods, climbing mountains, combing the seashore and exploring caves–discovering with your own senses the natural wonders of this world.

You can’t have firsthand nature experiences through reading alone, no matter how well written a book is. But you can support your outdoor studies with some good books in hand.

Here are a few to get you started:

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