Thursday, January 12, 2012

KACHEA Spelling Bee Winner!

We belong to a homeschool group called KACHEA. Kingport Area Christan Homeschooler Education Association. They had their annual spelling bee yesterday. Charlie is naturally an excellent speller. We got the study lists, and really, just looked them over a few times over the last few weeks. I was worried about entering him as I really wasn't sure how he would do. There were 15 kids his age group-3rd grade. He did excellent! He had no problem being up on a stage in front of everyone and talking in the microphone. He ended up WINNING! WooHoo! He got a medal that said "KACHEA Spelling Bee 2012 - 1st Place" and he was beaming with excitement. I'm so proud of him.

Megan entered as well in the bee for the older kids where the winner goes on to the Regional Bee in Knoxville. She tied for 4th. She didn't really study very much so I was very proud of her for doing well. There were 16 kids in her group. We laughed because in the car she was saying that she had trouble remembering that fajitas has a j and not a g. So I told her to remember that the j is kind of like an upside down f. She got THAT word in the bee, and of course, spelled it correctly!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

I now have a Facebook page!

I will be redirecting, or more accurately, directing, my efforts on my Facebook page. I can more efficiently guide others to educational resources, shopping discounts, and more via that medium. Please join me there!


Sunday, June 13, 2010

Now I really need everyone's help! I'm trying to win a trip to Cancun. It's a contest on Facebook. There are only 8 entries and I'm in 2nd, behind by about 25 votes. This ends Wednesday, June 16.

It's very easy to vote. You have to "like" Yucatan Holidays and then you have to "like" my entry - the 3rd one, with the flag on it. That's all!

THANK YOU so much!!/photo.php?pid=5022440&id=129235241499

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

PLEASE Help My Friend!

I nominated my friend and fellow homeschooler, Sonya, for a contest. The main prize for her is different every month, from $100 in April to a year of mortgage payments in July AND a trip to Pigeon Forge.

To win this would be a HUGE blessing for such a hard working woman who reaps little reward and still thanks God every day for everything she has.

PLEASE take a moment of your time and vote for her. It's VERY easy to vote! Copy and paste the link to open in your browser, and find Sonya H. from Jonesborough, TN and click on "vote". It should be on the first or second page. No registering or anything. That's it! And bookmark the page to vote every day! THANK YOU so much!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

School is a "job"?

I continually hear about parents (some my own friends) who tell their kids that going to school is their "job." This is so ridiculous to me I don't know where to start. Let's think about this. As a typical 10 year old, the government forces you to go to school (a certain school unless your parents want to pay for a different one). Are adults forced to work? NO. Are adults forced to work at a certain job? NO. So this child goes to school and has to do assigned work. This work is then graded. In some instances, this shapes their entire self-esteem as those that don't do well are held back and sometimes ridiculed by others. Admittedly, this part is the closest similarity. So this child does the work and is graded on it and then is NOT PAID! So my question is, how does this not amount to slavery? or at least violation of child labor laws on the part of the government?

Last year, I heard from some parents that their 4th graders were being told by teachers that if they "failed" (in quotes because you can't fail) the TCAPS (yearly, standardized tests), they would fail the 4th grade! So in essence, these kids were manipulated into studying for and doing well on these tests, and not even for their own benefit, but for the benefit of the teacher. The teachers jobs can be on the line based on how the kids do on the tests. How is that a fair evaluation of material learned? Not to mention that it's just a bit of unfair and undue stress on a child, or anyone, for that matter. Then we wonder why kids supposedly have things like ADD and "Performance Anxiety Disorder"! Personally, I'm not shocked in the least.

So please, stop calling school a "job" for kids! When the government tells you what job you must do, you will be graded at that job, ridiculed and demeaned by others when you don't do well, labeled with disorders, and you won't be paid, then you can tell your kids it's their job to go to school.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

College Without High School

I recently read Blake Boles' "College Without High School" and I have to say it's the best "unschooling" books I have read so far. I'm not much of a book critic, but I'll try my best.

Blake writes as he is speaking to the student directly. He also gears it toward  kids already in high school and encourages them, if they are bored (as I think most are), to get out there and seek adventure. He stresses that he's not saying "quit school and lay around", but rather "quit school and live out your dreams." If one of those dreams is college, so be it, and live the next several years preparing for it in your own way. He encourages college to be a dream for a high schooler, but THEIR dream, and not the dream of others, such as parents or other adults.

Blake then lays out what he calls dream mapping. By doing this, the student has written down the things he/she wants to accomplish now and later, and exactly how they are going to go about fulfilling that dream. For example, I may dream to run a marathon. It is a long, hard road to train for a marathon, but if I break it up and accomplish mini-goals along the way, I can get there. I may start with a 5k, then a 10k, etc. and eventually work my way up to the full marathon. If my dream is to be an astronaut, I would lay out some mini-goals that I would have to accomplish to get to ultimately be an astronaut.

Blake also lays out how it is a high schooler would put together his dreams and mini-goals as well as other accomplishments together as a sort of "resume" to use when applying to college. He equates getting accepted into college with getting a job...a very good way to look at it!

I highly recommend this book to any high schooler but also to any 7th or 8th grader so they can start to look ahead and plan for how they will attain the goal of college acceptance.

I'm reading the book again and taking notes this time because I plan to teach a course around it in our homeschool co-op. I can't do this until the fall, but I can't wait!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Why aren't you in school?

All of Charlie's funny sayings lately have got me thinking....I wonder how he would answer someone if they asked him why he wasn't in school. I'm not sure if he understands what school is. He hears about it on TV all the time and he sees school busses, but I'm not sure what he understands school to be. I can only imagine what he would say to someone if they asked "Why aren't you in school?" or "What grade are you in?" or "Who's your teacher this year?"

So tell me, what are some funny ways your kids have answered these types of questions. Or even share some things your kids have said when they've been old enough and inquired about what school is.