Tag Archives: encouragement

Homeschool Rescue from Only Passionate Curiosity ~ a Crew review

Homeschool Rescue review

While I feel comfortable with how our home education is going from day to day, it never hurts to take a critical look at why and how you are making choices and to get an outside perspective on things. That is what is provided when you sign up for Homeschool Rescue, an eCourse created by Heather from Only Passionate Curiosity for moms and dads educating their children.

Homeschool Rescue is a moderated class, meaning it is only going to be sold for a couple of weeks at a time so that there can be plenty of interaction between the Homeschool Rescue team and the class participants. To participate in the class, you sign up through the website. Right now, the class is available (and will be through June 1). You will get immediate access to the site, including the video lessons, printable workbooks, transcripts, audio downloads, and bonus resources. After May 31, though, the class will close for a while so that the Homeschool Rescue team can provide the support needed for the moms and dads who will be working through the eCourse and doing the hard work of evaluating every aspect of their home education.

Only Passionate Curiosity Homeschool Rescue

The eCourse includes five (5) modules. Each module has several lessons related to the module topic. Each lesson is comprised of a video lesson and also has at least one worksheet to print and work through, making the lessons practical and applicable to your homeschool. The lessons often have a list of resources, as well, that can provide further enrichment about the module topic. The lessons are available as an audio download and a transcript download as well if those fit your schedule better. (I did a lot of the transcripts because I could download them at home on my Kindle and then read while I was waiting at dance classes.)

We began at the beginning. We looked at what was going well but also at what was not. Using worksheets and brain power, I looked at struggles we face (a reality in every homeschool) and made plans for what we can do when we are having a hard day. (Having a plan in place makes everything easier, right? That is what Heather is helping us do – put plans in place for many areas of the education we are in charge of.) We looked at the various learning styles and found out what styles our children learn in. I found that I have a kinesthetic learner, an auditory learner, and a visual learner. That definitely explained a few things for me!

Homeschool Rescue banner

Creating a mission statement and dreaming dreams (or building castles in the sky – whatever phrase you prefer) gave us end goals and a path forward for planning. With the path carved out, we took a slight veer off and dealt with the good vs the great, saying “no” and figuring out where time goes. Reclaiming wasted time and planning out chores helps in the accountability arena. There is even help for organization and decluttering needs!

Module 3 is a nuts-and-bolts session. Taking a hard look at the curriculum and activities we do is something that I really need. I have taken a look at this module and listened to it, but I am planning to go back to it in just a couple of weeks when I can spent some serious time with it. I need to tackle the pacing guide that she describes and see if that will help my middle schoolers this next year. (I’m going to have two!!!) But also, I want to look at curriculum more closely.

This is one of those things that makes this such a helpful eCourse – I can come back to it when I have a bit more time and ability to really dig into something. Heather encourages participants to really take this at their own pace and if something is causing them to not deal with the topic at hand (whether it be health issues or something else), she suggests stopping until you can really work at it will a whole heart and mind. She believes this so thoroughly that she has made this a lifetime access course. Once you purchase, you have lifetime access, so that if you find your homeschool in chaos in the future, you can come back and go through it again. Do those worksheets and reevaluate goals and futures. This is definitely a strength of the course.

Modules 4 & 5 are still in progress for me but they are good ones. Module four has to do with how to set our students up to succeed. Module five is about working with teens. (Since my oldest just turned 13, I guess this one is for me now! EEK!) Both great topics that I know will be helpful.

Module 2 screenshot

One more thing – Heather provides a Facebook support group that is closed to all except members of this eCourse. It is a helpful place to find the support you might need from someone else who is working through these hard topics and facing down the issues, just as you are. This is just one more invaluable resource that she provides!

We have always heard that putting goals and plans down on paper makes them easier to reach. This same principle applies in our education. Heather does a wonderful job of sharing in the struggle, encouraging you along the way, and helping us to see a path forward.

Heather has a heart for encouragement. Listening to her, you hear her concern clearly in her words and voice. It is a joy to listen and be challenged by her in each and every lesson. This may be a Homeschool Rescue but Heather, from Only Passionate Curiosity, makes it a positive experience. Whether you have been homeschooling for what seems like forever or if you are just a few years in (like we are) and need a reboot, this eCourse may be just what you need!

At Home.

There were 100 of us participating in this eCourse of Homeschool Rescue. Head over to the Homeschool Review Crew blog to see what others thought of the course by clicking on the banner below.

Homeschool Rescue {Only Passionate Curiosity Reviews}

Find Only Passionate Curiosity and their Homeschool Rescue class on social media:
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Crew Disclaimer

How to let go? (Abandon) ~ FMF & Blogging Through The Alphabet

I am combining two tasks this week. The word for Five Minute Friday is ABANDON and the letter for Blogging Through The Alphabet is H.

H How to let go

GO –

We were on Spring Break this week and took some time. We abandoned all that we had been doing because we were physical, mentally, and emotionally worn out. We had abandon things. We went to a different place, relaxed, visited with loved ones, did some fun things, and recovered.

But in order to do that, we had to let go – abandon – what we were already doing. That is hard sometimes. I often tell myself that we have to keep on schedule; we have to keep going. We cannot stop. We cannot abandon the job. I have been given the job of guiding my children as they grow. I cannot abandon that!!!

But I often take that – I cannot abandon my job of guiding my children – to mean that I cannot stop doing the things that we are already doing. And that? That is wrong.

I can abandon, and should, many things. When something is causing daily grief? Abandon it and replace it with something that is better. When something is causing ache? Abandon it and replace it with something that brings joy. When something is causing a rift between family or friends or, worse, God’s people? Abandon it! Quickly.

We often think of abandoning things as bad. But how do we view letting go? Not as big a deal but just as permanent. So retrain your brain here – abandon/let go of the things that prevent you from doing whatever it is you need to be doing, whether it be guiding your children, helping others, or just carrying on daily with a cheerful heart and mind.

How do we let go? With joy, knowing that we are going to be refilling that space with better things.

At Home.

Visit Heading Home for the Five Minute Friday link-up.

Join the ABC blogging group hosted by A Net In Time and Hopkins Homeschool and link up your ABC posts.

A Net In Time Schooling
My ABC Posts:
H – How to let go?
I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

When It Doesn’t Come Together

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Today, I am a featured guest over on the Homeschool Review Crew blog.

There are days when we struggle with educating our children, just as every teacher has rough spots, rough days, days when things just don’t work like you expect them to. That is what I want to chat with you a bit about. So, if you would, please head over to the Homeschool Review Crew blog and see what I have to say about When It Doesn’t Come Together.

At Home.

 

For Someone Else – Blogging Through the Alphabet

f-for-someone-else

I want you to think for a minute. What have you done today?

How much of it was for someone else?

If you are a parent or a friend or a co-worker, you can think of many things that you have done for someone else. And that is a wonderful thing to do.

I was very privileged to do something for someone else the other day and it ended up being a wonderful experience. You see, At Home Dad really, really enjoys the music of Sting.

He had bought the newest album that was released and found himself wondering about the tour for it. So he looked it up. And saw that there was a date in a city just an hour away. So he asked me if I would go with him.

f-for-someone-else-concert

I didn’t hesitate – I said yes. Not because I like Sting. (I don’t mind his music at all.) Not because I wanted to go to a rock concert. (I didn’t mind but not how I would first choose to spend my time.) Not because I wanted to be around several thousand other people. (I did NOT want to be around a whole bundle of people!)

I said yes because I wanted to do something for At Home Dad that would bring a smile to his face and joy to his heart. You see, I wanted to do something for someone else and that, in turn, brought joy to me. (And, I thoroughly enjoyed the concert. If you have a chance, listen to the song “The Empty Chair.” Beautiful. Touching. He is just such an artist!)

So, I ask you again – What have you done today? I hope you see how much your little things -little things like picking up that candy wrapper, folding that load of clothes, sitting and reading the child that book, chatting with a friend, stopping to say hello to someone you know in the store, smiling and wishing that store worker a good evening – I hope you see how much the little things matter. Big things are good. But little things? They add up fast.

So keep on keeping on. Keep doing those little things. And encourage your family to find little things to do, as well. It will not only bring joy to your life, it will brighten the day of someone else. So go do something.

For Someone Else.

At Home.

Join the ABC blogging group hosted by A Net In Time and Hopkins Homeschool and link up your ABC posts.

A Net In Time Schooling
My ABC Posts:
F – For Someone Else
G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Goals for 2017

Sometimes, I find that I struggle with setting goals. I don’t want to fall short. I have found myself several times lately thinking something like “I won’t even try because I can’t do it.” This often happens when I see something that requires a lot of activity over an extended period of time.

I have found, though, that if I create a much smaller goal with a larger end point in mind, I don’t struggle as much. An example? Walk for 20-30 minutes per day. No distance required so for those days when I am hurting or exhausted, all I have to do is make the time. I don’t have to push super hard. But for those days when I am energetic and feeling good? Then I can do some running and go further and longer.

I have also found that if I write things down, I am more likely to hold myself accountable. If I tell someone I trust about a goal, they are also more likely to hold me accountable because, well, they can since they know. (Something about that knowing – if they don’t know, how can they help?!?) At Home Dad has changed his morning routine to help me meet my daily goal of walking. He did that because he knew about my goal and wanted to help me meet it.

So, with all that rambling in mind, I decided to show you my goals. I wrote them down on the printable that I had created and shared with you in my post on The End or The Beginning? Here are my 2017 Goals.goals-2017At Home.

Linking up with the Homeschool Review Crew’s discussion about goals in 2017.

Homeschool Review Crew Goals for the Year Ahead {Link Up}

Making a Change – Accountability and Responsibility Through Routine

Welcome to week 1 of the Virtual Curriculum Fair. This is my first year participating but I have always enjoyed the posts shared. For week 1, the theme is See How We Learn. The VCF is hosted by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds. This will also serve as the Middle School Monday post for today. With the preliminary information out of the way, let’s jump in.
week-1-see-how-we-learn

Daily life.

I don’t know about you but it seems to throw me for a loop often. It seems like no matter how well things are scheduled or planned, a wrench ends up in there causing havoc.

Due to that unpredictability, I loved working without a set time schedule. It worked well for us the first couple of years. We just jumped in when we were ready each day, did our work (which was basically a checklist), and then were done. I wrote things down as we went along and kept records as needed.

Last summer, we re-evaluated it all due to struggles we were having. And we gave the girls some input on whether they wanted time blocks or lists or to be told item by item what to do. We ended up with one of each kind. That’s okay, though. It works. And it helps us deal with changes to schedules, doctors appointments, illness, the blues, or just the crazy hectic schedule we ended up with this year.

making-a-change

But really, you what made the most difference? Accountability and responsibility. We had a pretty good talk with each of the girls. In this talk we discussed the following:

  • what was expected in regards to attitude – from God and from us
  • what was expected in regards to housework – daily chores and responsibilities
  • general timeline for starting school – 9:00 each morning with their morning responsibilities taken care of
  • completing school work – each of these discussions was different because one chose a blocked time schedule, one wanted a list so she could “do the next thing”, and the other wanted to come to us for each of the items on her school list for the day; just for a note: I do have a blocked schedule written out for each of the girls just in case and to help me stay on “schedule” but they don’t have to work by it.
  • school work accountability – Miss E has a simple to make checklist that she actually checks off each day, Miss L goes through her own checklist that she completes visually, and Miss J relies on my notes in my planner

This discussion was perhaps the very best things we have done so far with homeschooling. I forget sometimes that clear expectations make it easier to actually MEET those expectations. For me and for the girls. So by us taking the time to include the girls and be clear about what we expected, it has placed more responsibility on each of them and they have become stronger because of it.

Is it perfect? Nope. We still have plenty of days where things don’t get fully done or where attitudes (mine and theirs) are less than ideal. But overall? This has been a wonderfully freeing choice and it is very simple to remind them of the plans and expectations. They then take a deep breathe, reassess, and move forward on a better path. Most of the time.

Another thing that has made a huge difference in accomplishing what we need to? Me.

Yep – I make a difference. If I am not doing well, am in a bad mood, or didn’t sleep well, it can easily affect everyone else in the family. I soooooo wish that were not true but it is. Another example of that accountability and responsibility we talked to the girls about.

So, I have tried harder to take the responsibility for setting the daily tone. Some days I do well. Other days? Well, not so much.

Still, what have I found that makes it easier for me to hold my temper, speak kindly, or have the patience necessary to teach math when no one wants to do it? I need a morning routine just as much as the girls do.

My morning routine?

  1. prayer before I get out of bed
  2. get dressed (for exercise most of the time)
  3. make my tea and drink it while reading my Bible and devotional
  4. exercise and shower
  5. get some breakfast
  6. get started on schooling/housework/daily life

This works extremely well for me most days. Some days? We still hit bumps but that is life.

Daily life.

Welcome to our imperfect life where we love each other fiercely (sometimes more loudly than others), love God more, and work together to learn and grow and become the women God created each of us to be. All this with the help of the lone male around our house, At Home Dad. Come on in and enjoy life with us.

At Home.

vcf-banner-for-month

The following VCF participants have written their take on the theme of See How We Learn. Next week we will be addressing the theme of Playing With Words: the Language Arts. Until then, please take some time to go visit the blogs of these homeschoolers.

I invite you to see how my fellow bloggers learn in their homeschools (note: all posts will be live by noon EST, Jan. 2nd):

The Evolution of Our Homeschool by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

Us-School Because We Are Us, Not Someone Else by Laura @ Four Little Penguins

It’s All About the School by Michele @ Family, Faith and Fridays

Setting the Stage- the 2017 Virtual Curriculum Fair! by Lisa N. @ Golden Grasses

New Year, New Goals, New School! by Amanda H @ Hopkins Homeschool

Homeschooling – A Glimpse into How We Do it by Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory

Spotlight on How We Learn in Our Homeschool by Laura @ Day by Day in Our World

Our Unique Eclectic Homeschool  by Jennifer @ A Glimpse of Our Life

How We Learn on the Go by Jacquelin @ A Stable Beginning

Home Education – 10 Ways We Make It Work by Lizzy @ Peaches At Home

Schedules, where would I be without them? by Kim @ Good Sweet Love

Education at Our House by Shecki @ Greatly Blessed

Starting the Day Well by Sarah @ Delivering Grace

Making a Change – Accountability and Responsibility Through Routine by Lori H @ At Home: where life happens

A time to be encouraged is coming.. the Virtual Curriculum Fair by Annette @ A Net in Time

Loving the Moment! by Jen K @ A Peace of Mind

Keeping Our Homeschool Organized by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool

Homeschool Goal Setting – Looking Forward, Looking Back by Kristen @ Sunrise to Sunset

How We Choose Curriculum by Brittney @ Mom’s Heart

This Is How We Homeschool by Kym @ Homeschool Coffee Break

How we don’t learn in our homeschool & how I don’t plan {2017 Virtual Homeschool Curriculum Fair} by Meghan @ Quiet in the Chaos

Learning Our Way by Lisa @ McClanahan 7

Limping Along: Our Semi-Eclectic Approach to Homeschooling by Debra @Footprints in the Butter

2017 Virtual Curriculum Fair: See How We Learn by Dana L @ Luv’N Lambert Life

And even more ideas can be found by clicking through for the Linkup!

An InLinkz Link-up

The End or the Beginning?

printable-pages-for-2016-and-2017

An end and a beginning. Which do you see?

As the end of 2016 very quickly approaches, I see just that. An end. Finality. The finish line. But is it really? No. So, I find myself wondering.

– what did we do right?
– what did we succeed in?
– what did we make better?
– where did we grow?
– where do we need to do better?
– where do changes need to be made?
– where did we fall down?
– where did we fail?

The end of the year is a natural time for reflection and re-evaluation. But, did you notice that all of these statements have a “we” in them? There is a reason for that. I think of our family as a unit. We are a family and we look to help each other.

Still, what I do well affects others. What I fail at also affects them. So we are moving through this journey together. And when I evaluate and do better at my part in these things, I make our family stronger.

The end is clearly marked by the calendar but what if we took a new approach and looked at it solely as the beginning? This is my beginning. I am beginning a new set of goals. I am beginning a new year. A new outlook. An ending is often a sad time but beginnings are seen as opportunity. So take this new beginning as an opportunity for whatever it is you desire. And write those goals, or desires, down.

I tend to be very visual so I created these two little worksheets to help me think through the good, the bad, the ugly and to plan for where I can do better. I am going to post these in my notebook that I am beginning for Bible time/prayer time so that I see them often through the year and hopefully, it will help me. Remind me. Get me back on track when I wander. And help keep me accountable.

2016 In Review

2017 Goals

I am also tying the 2017 goals into my “one word” for the year – CRAVE. I will share more on that word next week, as I am still trying to work through all the ways I want to apply this in the next year.

Please print these and use them as you can see them benefitting you and your students or family. Please share, as well. All I ask is for you to link back to this page if you share them. Thank you!

At Home.

the-homeschool-review-crew-reflect-on-2016

Linking this post up with the Homeschool Review Crew bloggers’ Reflecting on 2016 linkup.

 

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