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Everything posted by pehp

  1. Holy smokes. As an attorney, who is friends with many attorneys, I have never, not once, ever, NEVER, seen someone post anything about a case/client on Facebook. The actual details and content of the situation aside (an attorney must act as an advocate, whether they like their client or the situation or not--which is one reason I steered clear of certain types of work), this is so supremely unprofessional that I can hardly stand it. Wow.
  2. I basically use the Socratic method, but not because I want to use it as a means of inquiry; it's just a natural way of talking to my children. When they ask me a question I ask one in return, to get them to think about it (b/c often they can puzzle out the answer themselves). I mean, it's totally organic for me. And the other thing is I just talk to my children. A lot. I was public schooled, but my parents talked to us. A LOT. We had discussions about everything. And this, more than anything else, is what makes kids ask meaningful questions. They will not ask meaningful questions if the parents aren't asking them, too...you know? It's just a way of life.
  3. I am just coming back to this thread after listening to two of Julie Bogart's phenomenally good periscopes on "what healthy looks like" (a list of 11 things). this is precisely what I was saying in my brief "emotional maturity" response above. I had no idea she was going to post periscopes on what it is to be a healthy homeschooler...so it was pretty cool timing to find that she had done two scopes on this just a few days after we had this thread! Here is the first periscope: https://katch.me/BraveWriter/v/e474ca46-1712-3182-9d40-ac6a0c1adfa1 And here in the second: https://katch.me/BraveWriter/v/ed8b5a0d-2830-3b15-a882-5c9b308cffad
  4. I felt queasy the first time I ate shellfish but otherwise, no. I was vegetarian/vegan for years (I tried both at various points). Now I eat anything but am picky about the quality and source of my animal products. I eat very little red meat, in spite of living on a beef farm. Mostly a little fish or chicken, and I like local eggs, local milk (delivered to my doorstep!), and some cheese and yogurt. I did not go from veganism to paleo...that kind of switch would have been too much for me. I started by eating some fish and then much later adding in some chicken and a decade later actually eating beef at times....rare times. I don't like pork much. Husband is currently vegan, though!!!!
  5. I like all the other responses so far but I would also say emotional maturity. Being around children 24-7 is not easy and if a parent is emotionally immature he or she could truly wreak havoc on the child/family. Knowing when to pause and take a break, prevent burnout, draw healthy boundaries, teach kids communication skills/coping mechanisms....really ALL parents need this but the homeschooling parent really, really does.
  6. I keep ours in the kids' bathroom (the only floor that is not wood on our main living floor) and just grab a rag and wipe it up every so often, or get it when I mop that floor. I don't want to wash something else to put under it.....but I definitely could never put it on the wood floors b/c it would RUIN them. I somehow don't even notice it since it's in a corner of the bathroom near the toilet--is this gross?! he doesn't think so--so it doesn't bother me b/c I almost never even notice it!! I could never deal w/ it in the kitchen--it would always be right there in my line of vision. But our kitchen floors are wood, so we'd never put it in there.
  7. Okay! So, my educational methods and philosophy could not be ANY farther away from hers, but I remember reading Joyce Swann years ago. She homeschooled her 10 children and they did not have a dedicated room. She had a box (I think a banker's box) for each child. In that box, the child's materials for homeschool were stored...EVERYTHING...books, papers, pencils, crayons, etc. They took their boxes to the table each morning and worked, and when they were finished they took the boxes and put them in their bedroom closets (genius alert). I think a box would be better than a crate w/ gaps/holes simply b/c it could contain any loose random stuff that would fall down. In the real world, loose random stuff is always falling down. I totally do not do this, but it seemed like a simple, easy, inexpensive way to deal with having no dedicated room. If you do a lot of whole family learning (I do), this becomes less useful, but you could modify it to have a box for all (say) science supplies for the year. I have a large basket for all our current read-alouds with both kids. I think the key is to contain stuff, and to keep the containment system simple and easy to understand, implement, and maintain. I think magazines like Real Simple actually complicate this stuff! I also think the best way to figure out what your must haves are is just to go about your teaching life for a month or so, and figure out what you really need to have accessible and 'out' and what you can keep stored away in a closet or drawer b/c you only need it occasionally. My own opinion is that we generally need less stuff accessible than we think we do--at least that has been my observation as we've homeschooled. So, try it out and then decide what you need. You cannot do it "wrong" so experimentation is your friend!!!
  8. I am wandering into murky territory here b/c I am not familiar with their online classes, but I think BraveWriter might have some......
  9. I don't have any killer tips, but I just want to say I think this is a darling theme, and anything you do with it will be beautiful and much-appreciated! What a sweet idea!
  10. Well, for my third grader I am using the old Garrard Discovery books (American history biographies) as his "readers"--one chapter per day to me, and that's it. They are below his actual reading level. But I think it's better to read aloud BELOW the level so they can get really fluent and familiar and confident with reading aloud. My son didn't read well until he was 7, so I did not require any of this in K or 1st. In 2nd grade we read through some of the leveled readers like Hill of Fire, some American history-type books, Wagon Wheels, Titanic Lost and Found, etc. One chapter a day, or if there were no chapters, then only a few pages a day. Less is more..I don't want my child to dread reading aloud to me! On a positive note, my son is a confident reader-aloud-er. He stunned us in church recently by reading aloud a passage with words I had no idea he knew how to read and nailing every single one. So, it seems to be working!!!
  11. I do not look at Pinterest, but I am fairly CERTAIN my rooms would never get pinned. :laugh: I don't have much wall space in our schoolroom--one wall is completely swallowed by a dry erase board. Another has a huge bulletin board on it (my brother-in-law owns a dry erase board/bulletin board company). Another area of that wall (which also has a big window) has a framed map on it. And then the other two walls are built-in bookcases/cabinets. I will try to post a few photos here: bookcases part of the table (the table is never this neat...it's always laden with some books, papers, and a sewing project) I don't have any photos of my desk/whiteboard area. It contains desk-y stuff. I keep our schoolbooks on the bookcases, but the current reads I keep in a big African basket next to our sofa (not in this room). The table has pewter cups I use for pens, I use a milk glass vase for a bunch of colored pencils.... what other organizational needs do you have? What is the problem area? Mostly books...papers...crafty stuff...? Sometimes it's easier to give specific advice to a specific need rather than general!
  12. Boy, I don't know. Mine are still young so I'm years away from that point....but I think keeping them out, or at least accessible, for a long time is a great thing. I ADORE picture books, and I still have many of my own from my childhood, which I love fiercely! Mine live in specific spots, so they do not seem to overrun the house (and I am really picky about which ones I purchase, so we probably have way less than some families). I think picture books are for all ages, so I'd probably err on the side of keeping them out/available for a long time. But ymmv!!!! ;) I would involve your kids in the process of culling, though, because they may love a book that you never really connected with...you never know!
  13. Maybe she is just doing too much writing in general? I can't advise re: how much is happening w/ your grammar program & spelling, but maybe she is just overwhelmed. My advice would be to do copywork once or twice a week, on a day when she has almost no other writing happening, and let her pick ONE sentence, or ONE line of a poem, and copy that. We keep our copywork very short and sweet, and back when my son was 6, I think it mostly just consisted of a word or two at a time, to learn the skill and to work on handwriting. In second grade (age 7) we ramped it up to a sentence at a time, and collected those into a booklet (so fun to read through it now!). My hunch is that she's just doing too much, and scaling things back across the board would have positive results down the road.
  14. Thanks! I have decided against it for fourth grade, but may hold onto it for later grades!
  15. I pick a specific artist and buy postcards of his/her art, and we narrate them each week, then hang them in a location where we will see them (the bulletin board in our schoolroom, and sometimes the fridge). We also just buy (at used book sales etc) large art books...there are a zillion at the library, too. You can leave these out and just look through them casually, or get more formal and do a "study". I also like Simply Charlotte Mason's art resources a LOT! I think a simple approach works great with art!
  16. I like Sullivan's a lot. I would highly recommend Drayton Hall as the plantation of choice. It's totally preserved (not restored). Hauntingly beautiful. I have been going since I was a child (my paternal family is from Charleston; Dad lives there now in the ancestral house!). It's just quiet and special. I will say that the tour guides aren't what they used to be. Back in the heyday, there was a guide named Bob Barker (really!). He was the only guide who never knew as much history as my grandmother. The last one we had, a couple of years ago, didn't do nearly as good a job. But it's still a wonderful place. Eat at Hominy Grill! Out on hwy 17 there's also Bessinger's BBQ--the onion ring alone is worth the drive. Last time we were in the city we went to Fleet Landing. It was good. If you want to part with some cash, go to Husk. Spend at least one solid afternoon poking around downtown, south of Broad St. You will be charmed!
  17. I love it. For a long time I did not. We didn't choose this house, and that was part of the struggle. My mother died very suddenly when I was a 23-year-old newlywed. My little sister was still in high school, in her senior year. My husband and I did not think it would be wise to pull her out after such a shocking loss and have her transfer to the county where my dad lived (my parents were divorced). So we moved into my mother's house...all her stuff still in it, a 1990s ranch-style house whose layout I hated and the style was nothing, NOTHING, like what I'd envisioned as a newlywed for my future home....etc etc. I could write an epic book on contentment, on blooming where you're planted, on sacrificing dreams, on growing into a place, on learning to love what you have been given, on realizing that you are where you are meant to be (we live on my family's farm), on the elements that make a home a true *home*, on blessings in disguise, etc. For a while I felt wonder at my friends who would purchase houses out of choice--they actually got to CHOOSE! Amazing. And we could have chosen to sell, once my sister was out of college (she attended a local college--it was best for us to keep the house as she got her bearings, which was a long and difficult process). But by then, 5-6 years had passed. And I'd started to understand that I was meant to be here, and stay, and raise my family. It was weird. It was good. I love my house. I never plan to move to another house!
  18. I am wild about our basement flooring, which is vinyl plank flooring. I had no idea I'd like it as much as I do! I use area rugs to "warm" things up, but it's not especially cold underfoot--nothing like tile would be! Here's a photo of it--lots of people have mistaken it for hardwood.... http://thejoyfulhouse.blogspot.com/2014/10/dark-basement-before-and-after.html (The "after" pictures were before I mopped/cleaned it, when the workmen were all still stomping all over it with their dirty boots. in reality it is shinier and clean!) I like that the maintenance is so easy (vacuum/mop, no fussing around), that I don't have to worry about the washing machine leaking and ruining it (like I would with wood) and that's it not carpet, b/c we have a dog and live on a farm...there is no way I could ever keep carpet allergy-free!
  19. Some of the most miserable people I know are wealthy. But I also know miserable poor people. And I know happy people across the economic spectrum..... But money can buy security, at least on a superficial level (can any of us ever claim to be 100% secure? no), and it can buy freedom from worry about financial concerns. In that sense, I think it contributes to happiness. So no, I do not believe money buys "happiness" in the sense of a generalized feeling of a contented, joyful life. But I think it can help.
  20. I am very grateful to have an L-shaped configuration of built-in bookcases--with bookshelves on the top, and a row of cabinets below. That's probably my #1 thing in our house. Keeps the books in great order and keeps the papers, photo albums, preschool toys, DVDs, etc. all out of sight!! Another thing that helps a lot for us is that inside a closet in our school area I have a hanging over-the-door shoe organizer. I use it to store office supplies (binder clips, sharpies, glue sticks, post-its, pencils, erasers, rubber bands, paper clips, etc etc). Vertical storage is the best! I find that in reality we do school in several places, but having a centralized location for our supplies is really helpful. I remember reading about Joyce Swann's system (she had 10 children!) which was basically to school at the table, and then at the end of the day, each child put their school items back into a box, and took them to their bedroom closets for storage. We do so many things as a group that it wouldn't work for us (she used Calvert for each child), but I thought it was a nice, smart, simple approach if you have children working on different levels and limited space!
  21. Probably for me, this would be: *waking up earlier than my children (but only now that everyone sleeps through the night! before that happened, I slept in b/c I was tired from nursing babies) *having a gentle daily routine each morning for my children: get up, eat breakfast, do basic chores/personal hygiene, and then we gather on the sofa to read together. After about an hour of that, we take a short break (I switch out laundry, return phone calls, drink another cup of tea/coffee) and then do table work together--math, copywork, etc. Then it's lunchtime. *remaining flexible and kind with my children so that we all get along!!! *using morning weekdays as "school-ish" time and then scheduling all lessons, outings, errands, activities, playdates, and appointments for afternoon. I am quite strict with keeping the time until about 1pm solely reserved for our family time, at home, doing school-related things.
  22. He's about 60 lbs. I don't think he's close to puberty, but I could be wrong (geez! i hope I'm not wrong!!!). I will look into the amber nightlight. He needs a sufficient amount of light to not get freaked out (thus the room next door) but not total darkness. It's a delicate balance. He just finished a round of sleepwalking just now, too...literally JUST NOW. I don't know what is going on with this child!
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