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Slight CC/AFHE conf. in Phoenix this weekend

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I'm looking through the break-out session schedule for the AFHE (Arizona Families for Home Education) conference this weekend in Phoenix, and only see about 2 or 3 sessions on Friday that I really I want to attend. Unfortunately, we can't stay for Saturday, but I think I might have the same dilemma if we were attending on Saturday. There seem to be more sessions about character building, purity and evangelism than home education. PLEASE DON'T FLAME ME...there is nothing wrong with these subjects, but I would rather discuss these at church.


Am I missing something? Could someone who is going enlighten me? I'm brand new to HSing this year, so I'm just learning who the "power players" are...maybe I'll miss out hearing someone wonderful.


So far I'm looking to attend these:


"Teaching to your Child's Bent" with Jordan Hulcy (Jessica's son) of KONOS

"How to Teach Math" with David Quine of Making Math Meaningful

"Essential Science" with Rebecca Keller of Real Science 4 Kids (I'm looking forward to this session the most...)


I have nothing in mind for one of the tracks (1:30 - 2:30 on Friday), as there is NOT ONE session that is school-related!!!! I'm sure they are all encouraging, wonderful sessions, but......

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We just got an e-mail reminder about the convention with hints for a successful convention, one of which was, "Get childcare." Hmmmm. Why, when we signed up, did they offer a child's attendance fee which we paid? While we knew it would be an adult-centered day, it now appears that children aren't really encouraged to attend (except for teens which have their own program). My attitude is getting worse. :glare:

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You might want to look at http://www.hena.us


This is the Home Education Network of Arizona....another statewide homeschooling group. They will be having their 4th annual convention in March, 2010.


HENA was created because there was a large population of homeschoolers who were very dissatisified by the turn that AFHE took......going from an all inclusive group meant to serve the entire state's homeschool community to a decidedly, and outspokenly, Christian group. Speakers with non-Christian views are not allowed. Period.


And yes, as the other poster said, children aren't specifically excluded anymore because the year they were there was a lot of backlash....but it's very clear that they're not exactly welcome either. HENA on the other hand has a game room for the kids, workshops aimed directly at the kids, workshops that are for both parent and child, and a talent show at the end of the conference where any child that wants to perform is encouraged and welcome. The last two years the Homeschool Family Theatre group has performed their play at the conference as well....actors are all homeschool students and last year the play was written by a student. Next year's play is also being written by a student.


I appreciate all that AFHE has done to keep Arizona's homeschooling safe and without state interference, but I have to say that I have not attended a conference in many years because of the serious changes that occured.


I see from your location that you're near the border, so it's quite a drive for you. To be frank, I wouldn't make the drive for this conference. Although, if you want a large vendor room they will definitely have that, but to me it's not worth the cost just to visit vendors.


And, from what I understand, advance sales of tickets has been way below expected......hence all the extra "reminders", lol. It's sad too, because when this group was open to everyone and tolerant of others it was a wonderful group to belong to and the conference was huge, crowded and the speakers were diverse and useful to everyone.


By the way, before someone thinks I'm throwing bad apples....I am a Christian and friends with people on the board of AFHE. My beef is that I disagree with excluding others as they have and of having the conference being more about Christianity than it is about homeschooling. I have attended the 3 conferences from HENA and while there were certain workshops that were not my style, I was happy to see others able to enjoy themselves and gain encouragement for their style of homeschooling, or actually of unschooling. Unschooling is one of the choices that AFHE is openly against, to the point that one of the board members who runs a large newsletter does not allow someone known to be an unschooler to even subscribe, let alone post. She's very very particular about whom is allowed, and very open about that as well. Since it's her newsletter, well.....


The HENA board will be making decisions about next year's speakers and Rebecca Keller and Susan Bauer are two that have already been suggested. They tried to get Susan for the first conference but that was the year that her new book had just come out and she was not doing conferences because she was promoting the book. I'm not sure why they didn't follow up on it in futher years, perhaps no one had suggested her again......but I know they're on the short list this year because I put them there, lol.

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You might want to look at http://www.hena.us


This is the Home Education Network of Arizona....another statewide homeschooling group. They will be having their 4th annual convention in March, 2010.


Thank you so much for your comprehensive reply! My husband and I, too are Christians (actually quite conservative in our theology, however, not "typical" to some of our friends) and all of my Christian homeschooling friends from church are just raving about this conference. I was rather ambivalent about even making this post in case someone I know saw it. But I have a feeling my husband and I will not worry about not attending on Saturday. I think we'll look into the alternative for next year.

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