Posts Tagged ‘homeschooling’

Beyond the Mask – On DVD and Amazon Streaming


12 Oct

If you were interested in Beyond the Mask, and never went to see it in the theater, then you can see it now. Netflix offers it in their DVD options, and Amazon has the DVD for sale, as well as offering it for rent on Amazon Instant Video. The DVD from Netflix for us is on its way, and I can’t wait to see it!

In case you missed the original post here is the trailer:

Let us know what you think!

How to Learn Music Online


22 Sep

Hey everyone, I wrote this for a different purpose (hence the different style), but figured it could be useful to homeschoolers, so thought I’d post it here. Would love to hear your comments on it. It was described as “not good quality.” I don’t think it sounds too bad… What do you think?

 

Learning music is a useful and enlightening skill that can benefit you throughout your life. Whether you want to learn just for the fun of it, acquire a new hobby, or reach a higher, more professional level, it’s a skill that takes a lot of time and dedication. Regular lessons can be expensive, inconvenient, or just time consuming when you factor in getting there and back. Let’s discuss how to learn music online, and possibly trim the cost, or make it work so the times are better for you.

YouTube is often a highly underutilized resource, when it comes to music education. Sure, people visit the site to see funny and entertaining videos, but did you know there are tons of how-to videos on there as well? Using YouTube, you can search for your desired instrument, and find lessons. Assuming you already have the instrument on hand, you’re able to get started on learning how to play almost immediately.

Choosing to learn via YouTube is great. If you have trouble, there’s the added benefit of being able to play that particular video over and over again. Also, you are able to progress on to the next lesson when it’s right for you. Best of all, these lessons are free, with often nothing more than having to deal with a 30-second commercial to watch before your lesson begins.

When you look at how to learn music online with YouTube, though, there are some disadvantages. First is the possibility that there are not any lessons, or limited lessons available for your chosen instrument. (At the very least, if lessons exist, you can get started using YouTube, and then move on to having a live teacher.) There’s also the fact that you don’t get personal critiquing of your playing, and suggestions on how to improve. You also can’t ask questions, but, since the Internet is so full of information, it’s possible you can find the answer online yourself. It’s up to you whether the pros outweigh the cons when choosing to learn with YouTube videos.

Did you know that you can take lessons online with a real-life person? If videos aren’t your thing, then there are various ways to get in contact with someone who is willing to teach you over the Internet. Usually you’ll use a program such as Skype, (more…)

The Book Samaritan


26 Aug

books

Get Help Acquiring Homeschooling Curriculum

Well, it’s that time again. If you haven’t started your school year already, then chances are you’ll be starting pretty soon. Have you got all your curriculum yet? Possibly so, but I’m sure there are those out there who want to homeschool and are struggling. You’ve either found a way to make do, or it’s possible you’ve delayed getting your books in hopes of being able to afford what you need later.

This is where The Book Samaritan comes in.

The Book Samaritan is a non-profit organization that runs out of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. It helps provide homeschooling materials to those financially unable to get what they need to homeschool their children.

If you’re in need of materials, you can send a letter to this organization, along with your children’s grade levels, and they’ll help you out. If you have specific curriculum requests, you can include those as well. They can’t always fulfill the specific curriculum requests, but they’ll do what they can to get you what your children need for the school year.

You’re probably asking, “But what’s the catch?” It’s simple really. When you’re finished with the materials, they don’t want you selling them. You are to either pass them on to other homeschoolers who can use them, or send them back to The Book Samaritan, so they can be used by other homeschooling families in need.

That’s it! If finances are what stand between you and your ability to homeschool, then this is a simple solution.

 

Help Others Receive Homeschooling Materials

Maybe you’re a homeschooling family that doesn’t need help with materials. Maybe you have old curriculum and learning supplies laying around.  Well, guess what? You can HELP The Book Samaritan.

The Book Samaritan exists because of donations. Selling your old material might be great for a few extra bucks, but you just might want to consider sending these items to this organization and help give someone the opportunity to homeschool. Here’s what they accept:

  • books
  • workbooks
  • kits
  • CD-Roms and DVDs
  • flashcards
  • school supplies

And of course, monetary donations are accepted as well. These funds are used to provide families with materials the organization doesn’t already have on hand.

 

Check it out. The Book Samaritan is a great organization that has already helped many homeschooling families, and will hopefully help many more in the future.

School Supplies are OUT!


11 Jul

I had to stop by Target the other day, and was hoping amongst hope that they had their supplies out. They did!! WOO! It was great. We started school this past Monday (that’s a whole different post entirely) and I was lacking a couple things. When I was there I was able to pick up most of what I was missing, so we’re good to go!

This was the best school supply shopping trip I think I’ve had. My son absolutely hates dealing with it, so I did the shopping while he was at youth group (I always enjoyed school shopping and picking things out as a kid, but I guess he wants no part of it.) It was also early evening on a weeknight, and too early for most other people to want to be buying school supplies so for the most part I had the area to myself, rather than having to hear grouchy parents and loud kids running around the Back-to-School area.

I bought extra binders last year and was able to recycle a couple from a few years back as well, so I don’t need to worry about those, which is what we spent a lot of time on last year. (Do you know how hard it is to find a 1 1/2″ binder that holds folders, or a 2″ O-ring binder??) I knew what I was lacking and went in with a mental list of what I wanted, knowing what the prices were last year, so I had a plan.

What’d I get?

(more…)

It Starts – Target School Supplies


28 Jun

BackToSchool-10

School vector designed by Freepik

Well, believe it or not, June’s not even over yet, and it’s already begun. Target has started putting out inexpensive “school supply” items in their dollar section. I have to admit I was in a bit of a hurry each time I walked through (on my way into the store to get other items), but noticed things are starting to appear in this section. A lot of the items can work well for various homeschooling purposes. I’ll try to include a more comprehensive list later, but if you have children in lower grades, or just need knicknacks here and there, then you might want to start checking out what they have.

Things I’ve seen so far include workbooks and organizational items (things like little baskets, bins, holders,  and plastic accordion folders).

Just thought I’d give a heads up to those of you who are interested. Let the supply shopping fun begin!

 

 

Teaching Macbeth


21 Jan
Books Shakespeare

Image courtesy of Matt Banks at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Well, it’s that time of year again when we go through a Shakespeare play. So far, in the past couple of years, we’ve done Julius Caesar and Hamlet. I wanted to save Romeo and Juliet for next year, when my son will be in 8th grade, so this year I had to figure out which play to choose.

I’m not overly familiar with all of Shakespeare’s works. The only other three I am familiar with myself are A Midsummer Night’s Dream, which I read and saw performed in 7th grade and HATED, Othello, or The Taming of the Shrew, which just didn’t seem like the right choice for an 11-year-old boy.

I went online to amazon.com as my first resource in choosing which play to use. Maybe, this isn’t the best approach, but with the past plays we’ve done, we’ve used a series called, “Shakespeare on the Double” and I wanted to see which plays they had available. These books are books I really enjoy. They have the Elizabethan English that the plays were written in on one page (the original text), but on the other page they have modern English so that those of us that are Elizabethian-challenged can muddle through Shakespeare’s works. Both my son and I have really enjoyed reading Shakespeare with these, so if it’s not broke, why fix it? (more…)

The Jousting Tournament


18 Oct

Knight-Helmets

 

 

I’ve been trying to find different activities for one of my homeschooling groups, and then I remembered this activity that I had seen mentioned years ago, and never went to. I went searching for it a month or two ago and I was in luck! They still have it. It’s a Jousting Tournament. This is the kind of oddball event that homeschoolers should be on the lookout for, and take advantage of by going!

This event is a 3-day event from Friday until Sunday. Friday is the “practice” day, and Saturday and Sunday are the actual tournament days. It isn’t an actual “Renaissance Faire” but has a lot of similarities to one, I believe. Along with the jousting they had various other demonstrations, people in medieval garb, and different activities available.

Even though today was a weekday, I was pretty surprised at the turnout. There were a variety of couples and small groups, some mothers or families with small children, and a good amount of school groups. I can only imagine how chaotic and crowded it may end up being during the actual event over the weekend though. I’m glad we were able to go today when it was a slower pace, and with fewer people around.

(more…)

Literature for October – Poe


06 Oct

TheStoriesofEdgarAllanPoe

I was looking through various books when I stumbled upon this children’s book on The Stories of Edgar Allan Poe . I love these books by Sterling, and up until now have only bought classic novels in these book formats, so I almost overlooked it. Then the black bird on the front cover caught my eye, reminding me of the poem, “The Raven”, and I thought, Why not?

At the time, it was September, and I was a bit inspired by the fact that October was coming. It seemed like the right month to introduce works by Poe. I wasn’t quite sure how I was going to approach it, but I knew it was a bit different than anything else we had done, so I accepted it as a challenge. (more…)

Manufacturing Day – Friday, October 3, 2014


23 Sep

Have you heard about Manufacturing Day? I hadn’t until this year, but it’s a way for manufacturers to open their doors to put manufacturing on display and work together to discuss the issues involved with their industry. Basically on that day, a lot of manufacturers open their plants for tours, and this is a chance for people to watch the process for whichever local company they feel is an interest to them.

Here is the site:

http://www.mfgday.com/

If you go and click “attend an event” you can then search by location to see what’s available near year, and find out more of the details (such as age requirements, times, what their tour offers, etc.) Various places also offer online tours or events as well.

It could be interesting…and hopefully fun! Check it out!

FREE: HTML 101 for Kids


25 May

Do your kids like the computer? The Internet? Do they want to be able to design their own web pages? Do you want to use your children’s love of computers to actually have them learn something rather than just mindlessly websurfing or playing games? This upcoming class may be your chance!

Offered by a fellow homeschooling parent, this free class in basic HTML will give your children the chance to learn the basic HTML tags and the fundamentals of Web Design.

I can’t tell you how the class actually is at this point in time, but I just signed up my son and we will see how it goes.

The upcoming class starts Monday, June 2, 2014, and another one starts on Tuesday, July 8, 2014. There’s also a link to learn more about future classes if now is just not the right time.

Here is also some basic info (basically taken from his site):

– It’s open to students 9-years-old and older

– Some familiarity with a keyboard is valuable

– It’s a FREE “Beta” class, and feedback on the class is desired.

 

There’s no “set time” when your child has to be on the computer to do this, so it’s just something for them to work on and do when they can over the time period given. Hey, it’s better than hearing the classic, “I’m booooooored” or “There’s nothing to dooooooooooo” and will keep their minds alert this summer.

Click Here for more information on HTML 101 for Kids: Basics of Web Programming

Happy Coding!

 

Homeschooling is Fun

Fun and Interesting Homeschooling Ideas