Michelle of Serendipity Place writes about a worrying trend amongst homeschoolers to be exclusionists. She concludes by saying: "Home education is changing the face of the U.S. But if we don’t find a way to stick together, at least enough to protect our freedoms, we will lose something very important: not just to us, as homeschoolers, but the very direction this country is taking. We must strive to promote freedom and we must begin by giving people the freedom to be and do whatever works for them and their families…without judgement or caveats."
Laura Milligan presents 100 Unbelievably Useful Reference Sites You?ve Never Heard Of posted at Teaching Tips. A quick look at this website showed me that I wasn't as clued up w.r.t. reference sites as I thought I was. She writes:"Beyond Google, Wikipedia and other generic reference sites, the Internet boasts a multitude of search engines, dictionaries, reference desks and databases that have organized and archived information for quick and easy searches. In this list, we’ve compiled just 100 of our favorites, for teachers, students, hypochondriacs, procrastinators, bookworms, sports nuts and more."
Alasandra presents Sean Paddock and Tyler McMillan weren't even homeschoolers, so why are their deaths being used to harass homeschoolers? posted at Alasandra's Homeschool Blog Awards. Alasandra writes: "In America one is generally considered innocent until proven guilty, but this editorial, Our View: Help protect home-school children implies that homeschoolers are guilty until proven innocent.The editorial writer ignores the fact that Sean Paddock was four years old and thus not school age. The editorial also fails to mention that Sean Paddock was adopted. Wasn't some sort of government agency involved in the adoption process? Wasn't it their job to insure the adoptive Mother would provide a loving home? Why isn't the editorial calling for more oversight before people can adopt? instead of implying that legitimate homeschooling families can't be trusted and therefore need a government watchdog. What's next government watchdogs for stay at home moms who don't put their newborns and preschoolers in day care?"Alasandra makes some very valid points. I find it rather worrying how the media has this tendency to rush to blame homeschooling for child abuse.
Thanks to Silvia, from Po Moyemu--In My Opinion, I finally understand the difference between Western and English style horse riding. She posts about Riding Lessons for the entire family. It sounds like a lot of fun. Shira wishes she had Silvia for a mom and not Shez, the critter averse mom.
Silvia also shares her daughter Emily's project where she is gearing up for the UNtrepreneurial Fair at the Live and Learn Conference this September. I love how homeschoolers are often entrepreneurs. Emily's Craftiness is a joy to behold. My not so secret dream for our children is that they become entrepreneurs instead of corporate drones.
Laura Williams presents Around the Homestead Today... posted at Laura Williams' Musings, saying, "Homeschooling, Gardening, and Canning all rolled into one day and a project or two." Laura's post reminded me of my childhood. My grandmother was a baker, gardener, canner, jam and preserve maker of note. I sometimes felt that I spent my entire summers pickling and canning. One of my fondest memories is of coming home from school and diving into a preserved yellow cling peach. I love cling peaches and have not had one since I emigrated. I wonder if they are even available in the US. Granny used to peel the peaches from the trees in our orchard and then preserve them whole. I've never tasted anything to beat those preserves.
Thomas J. West, of Thomas J. West Music submitted a post that is very relevant to our family. He posted the first of a series of tips on how to improve your results of practicing any musical instrument. In this post he shows you how to Make a Practice Session Schedule Thomas has also started blogging about a series of videos, mostly from YouTube, of great performances. He uses these videos to highlight aspects of musical mastery and music learning for the benefit of his readers. This video is of Victor Borge, my late father's favorite comedian.
Tammy Takahashi of Just Enough, and Nothing More submitted Deborah Marcus' screamingly funny Overachievers Quizz. Have a look at Marcus' new magazine, Secular Homeschooling.
Secular Homeschooling is a non-religious quarterly magazine that reflects the diversity of the homeschooling community. Its readers and writers are committed to the idea that religious belief is a personal matter rather than a prerequisite of homeschooling.
This magazine is for any homeschooler, religious or not, who is interested in good solid writing about homeschooling and homeschoolers.I've subscribed since the first issue. I appreciate being able to read a magazine about homeschooling that does not include religion.
Amy S Quinn presents The Art of Learning Better: 101 Tips to Find and Fit Your Learning Style posted at Teaching Tips. While this blog entry was directed at the learner, not the teacher, I feel that we homeschool parents will find great ideas for teaching to our children's different learning styles. She ends her post with suggesting that students attempt to strengthen their ability to work within other styles by working on other methods of learning and gives solid examples of how to go about doing this.
Our final post comes from my colleague, Lydia. Lydia writes about The Science of Cooking at the Young Chefs Academy. The Young Chefs Academy was one of the sponsors for the homeschool science fair that the two of us arranged this year. Earlier this year Lydia and I were bewailing the dearth of good competitions open to homeschoolers in our area. We wanted our children to be able to enter science fairs and writing competitions. Finally, we realized that all the complaining in the world wouldn't make things happen, so we decided to host our own science and writing fairs. We hosted an exceedingly successful science fair in May and now plan to make it an annual event.Buoyed by our science fair success, the two of us, ever the gluttons for punishment, are in the throes of arranging a writing competition for homeschoolers. We're very excited to announce some of the big name authors who are going to be judging the entries.
Sara Gruen, author of New York Times #1 Bestseller Water for Elephants and the upcoming Ape House.
Joshilyn Jackson, best-selling author of Booksense #1 Pick Between, Georgia and Booksense #1 Pick gods in Alabama.
Mark Crilley, author and illustrator of the Akiko series from Random House Children's Books.
Lois Lowry, author of The Giver, among many other books, and winner of two Newberry Medals.
Robert Pinsky, Poet Laureate of the US from 1997-2000, author of 19 books, and founder of the Favorite Poem Project.
Karen Abbott, author of New York Times Bestseller Sin in the Second City, a book about Chicago's infamous Everleigh Club.
Robert Pottle, author of several poetry books for kids, including I'm Allergic to School, a book of songs and poems about school.
Michael D'Orso, best-selling author of fifteen books of narrative non-fiction, three of which were nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.
We'll list more judges here as we confirm them.This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for homeschooled children and their parents. How often do aspiring writers, storytellers and videographers have the chance to have leaders in their fields critique their work? Who knows where this will lead.....
That concludes this edition. Submit your blog article to the next edition of the carnival of cool homeschoolers using our carnival submission form. Past posts and future hosts can be found on our blog carnival index page.