Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Guarding our school day

Survey below - I want your opinion!

I just finished writing Lesson J for our Homeschooling ABCs class (www.homeschoolingabcs.com). I am really enjoying teaching this class for beginning homeschool parents. The lesson that I just wrote and uploaded to the membership site is about guarding our school time. The title is "Just Say No - Staying Focused and On-track".

How many times do we pick up the telephone and realize that shouldn't have because we KNOW we are going to lose 45 minutes of school time. And how many times have you decided to check email for just a few moments and realize that a half an hour has slipped by and the children have wandered off and are no where to be seen.

Guarding our school time is an important and hard-learned lesson for most of us. How many times have you had your sister-in-law drop her little kids off at your house during school time because she figures you're home and can easily fold another busy toddler and demanding baby into your day's routine and activities. How hard and yet how important it is that we communicate our schedule and when we are and are not available for others.

This lesson provides a framework for when to say "no" to an activity and when to respond with a wholehearted "Yes!". When we are careful about the things we say yes to, we don't get the life sucked out of us and have burn-out set in. Setting boundaries is so, so crucial to our homeschooling success!

Survey: I would love your opinion! I am writing a 5 day mini-course that will be free to all who want to take it. This is separate from our Homeschooling ABCs class which is a paid membership class. Anyway, which topic do you think would be more useful for beginning and seasoned homeschoolers alike:

Homeschooling on a Dime (free and cheap ways to teach your kids at home)


What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!)

I would love to know your opinion! Thanks for sharing.



dolphin lady said...

That is a REALLY tough choice! Both are very appropriate for new homeschoolers, but I do think that people are more worried about making sure they teach everything that they need to when they begin. New homeschoolers seem to be very nervous about making sure they are covering all their bases.

Danielle Hull said...


I vote for "What your child needs to know and when." Thanks for the chance to review the class!

Danielle Hull
member of TOS Crew

SchoolinRHome said...

Hello. I am part of the TOS Homeschool Crew and just received your e-mail. I am excited for this program as I am just starting to teach my 4 yr. old son to write and recognize his ABCs. He is my 4th student and wanted something new to make it more exciting for myself. I think this is going to be a lot of fun for the two of us!
As for the pick, I am different that the other 2 commenters.
I think
Homeschooling on a Dime (free and cheap ways to teach your kids at home)
I just think this would be more fun to make and to read. You can find that other information - even just going to your school district where you live. I feel the free stuff would be fun. I love all things creative though and feel this one could include free (inexpensive crafts) you can make from things at home that would go along with unit studies!

Tammy said...

What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!) - would be the one that I would chose.

I always want to make sure we are on track with what we are learning (or a little ahead of the game actually!)

Anonymous said...

Homeschooling on a Dime is my choice. But I think the other class may be better for beginner homeschoolers? :)

Candace (TOS crew)

SchoolinRhome said...

Hi SchoolinRHome. I realized I made a mistake as the class isn't actually ABCs. Sorry for jumping to conclusions before getting the product. It is printing out as I type and I look forward to reading it through. Great idea to have a class like this for those starting out homeschooling. I would have just loved this my first year!
Look forward to working with you more!
TOS Homeschool Crew Member

Kathy said...

What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!)is my vote!

Shannon R said...

Shannon here from the TOS Crew as well... and I'd say "homeschooling on a dime" because often new homeschool parents (or even the vets! LOL!) can be frustrated at figuring out how much this thing called "homeschooling" is gonna cost them, especially if they've pulled their child out of school where they've already paid all their (conveniently for the school, non-refundable) fees.
Homeschooling CAN cost a small fortune, OR it can cost almost nothing - it's all up to how creative you are or how much of a curriculum junkie you turn into! LOL!
So, that's my vote.
Blessings Terri!
I think Lesson One of your HomeschoolingABCs is AMAZING... but you might want to include that it is also legal to homeschool in all 10 provinces and 3 territories up here in Canada too... and maybe a link for www.hsldacanada.org as well. Just a thought..

Billie Jean said...

Hi Terri - I'm part of TOS Crew and wanted to let you know that not all of us are seasoned veterans! I have been hsing my 12 yo DS for 3 years now and have 3 more little ones I will be starting from scratch. So for me, I am still a newbie! LOL I can't wait to get into your lessons!

As for the bonus lesson - I would say the "what your child needs to know" although with the economy going the way it is, the "hsing on a dime" is just as appropriate. Sorry, I'm not very much help in deciding.

Billie Jean

Cindy said...

I vote for Homeschooling on a Dime!

Amanda said...

Homeschooling on a dime would be my choice. I am excited about getting into your work and see what it is all about.
Amanda (TOS Crew)

Anonymous said...

What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!)

Aquaran69 said...

Homeschooling on a dime please....

I must be nuts said...

As a seasoned homeschooler I would prefer homeschooling on a dime....but for a beginner homeschooler what your child needs to know when would be best...guess that doesn't help much does it? :o)
Ok, my choice would be homeschooling on a dime. LOL


Anonymous said...

I would vote for What your child needs to know when, as long as it won't be a repeat of state standards or what the public schools are doing...otherwise Homeschooling on a Dime, though I kind of enjoy ferreting that out myself:> Sudzie

Meredith Curtis said...

HOmeschooling on a Dime!

brite00eyes said...

What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!)
There is less information available for this on the web, so it would be worth more to a parent just starting out.

The Crazy Mom said...

I vote for What Your Child Needs to Know When.

Crazy Mom

4God'sglory! said...

Hi Terri,

Denice here for TOS Homeschool Crew. My choice would definitely be Homeschooling on a Dime. The reason being, I can find what my children need to know and when most anywhere (even the library!). BUT, most homeschoolers are single income families. I know it's tight for us! Anyway that I can enhance our homeschool cheaply (or better yet, FREE!) is a bonus!

I look forward to reviewing your class!


Shauna said...

Both sound like good topics, but my preference when I was a beginning homeschooler would have been What Your Child Needs to Know and When, especially if it specifically relates to home education (versus a classroom approach to grade levels).

More Elinor than Marianne said...

Hi, I'm Denise, from TOS' Homeschool Crew.

Although both options are extremely helpful, I'd have to say that based on where I was at the beginning, I'd have to vote for
"What Your Child Needs to Know and When (now you can rest easy!)"

I think once parents are comfortable teaching their own, and have waded successfully thru the vast waters of curriculum choices and public school mindsets (which a lot of us have, as 90% attended p.s.), then they can tackle homeschooling on a dime. ;o)

Penny said...

Terri, I vote for Homeschooling on a Dime.

Penny said...

ps: I'm a TOS crew member, too, and am a relatively new homeschooler (Jan '08) of a child w/ autism. I spent a lot of time learning about development -- I've got that covered.

Tina said...

I vote for "What Your Child Needs to Know and When". I've homeschooled for 14 years and I STILL check out books from the library about this subject to make sure I'm getting the core info taught.

Tina Brown
TOS Crew

Alicia said...

I would definently vote for the Homeschool on a dime. While I am not new to homeschooling as a concept I am new to being a homeschool parent and it is SO easy to get carried away and overwhelmed with what is out there. Many parents give up homeschooling quickly, or pass over the idea all together, because they think it is to expensive. When you get a catalog that can be as fat as a 1000 pages thick, and it isn't the only company out there, and when you see curriculums being hundreds of dollars, it's hard for a beginner to know what to do and HOW to spend wisely.

Tony Silva said...

Homeschooling on a Dime -- definitely!

As a dad facing the monthly ritual of working out the family budget, it seems like there are always new expenses for courseware, co-op, lessons and clubs. If any of them were a dime, we'd probably sign up ;-)

Anonymous said...

I personally vote for Homeschooling on a Dime (free and cheap ways to teach your kids at home) because we are now a family of 6 and are on a tight budget!

Marbles said...

As a former home schooler, who is taking at least one of my brood back out of school, I would say the "Home School on a Dime" is of greater appeal to me. Actually, that was specifically what I had searched for when I stumbled across your blog.

As for what to cover, each person has their own opinions, many of which contribute to the decision to take on the responsibility of educating at home. Also, different states have different requirements, which would lead to different what students need to know lists.

As for the what they need to know and when, I'd suggest that parents check out the first edition books from J. D. Hirsch's Core Knowledge Series, "What your [insert grade here] needs to know" are a good starting point, and you can refine from there. (The reason that I specified the first editions is that the first editions had a strong emphasis on more classic literature with a higher reading level required than the pieces listed in the later editions)

staceyhoff said...

Hi- new here! I like the second option *just a bit more* overall, than the first. I still want the first one, though! Can we have both---someday? lol! :)

staceyhoff said...

marbles, I have that exact set and I find them ridiculously overachieving and not age appropriate at all! I guess to each his(her :)own, right?