Practical Homeschooling

/Practical Homeschooling

How important are relationships?

As this teaching year draws to a close and we begin to make new goals and plans for the year to come, here is a possible thought to consider: Many of us have come to believe, based on observation and success, that tutorial education is indeed the most efficient and by far the most interesting, exciting way to teach. With this teaching system we are able to customize studies for each of our children and help them to explore their world in the directions that they individually enjoy the most. Indeed, the lesson plans in Five in a Row were written to make this type of education readily available to homeschool teachers.

Yet, there are usually two sides to every good goal and while we take the time to help our children develop into unique individuals, we want to make sure that they also realize

By |June 24th, 2013|Homeschool, Practical Homeschooling|0 Comments

What are the FOLD&LEARN™s and how do I use them?

And why am I excited about them?

Those two questions will be forever interwoven. I was a very poor student. If there was one comment I could count on seeing on every single report card it was this: “Steve doesn’t work up to his ability.”  Why? Because school wasn’t interesting. It was boring, structured, mindless and frankly- pointless. I was bored senseless beginning in about first grade. The ONLY thing I remember finding interesting was learning to read. Beyond that school was mindless repetition.

There were only a handful of truly great learning moments- days when the light bulb of learning clicked on. Invariably those were days when I was turned loose with some basic tools and an open-ended learning objective. Suddenly the juices began to flow and I became lost in a world of creative learning, self-directed learning, spontaneous learning. I can still remember each of those days and the projects, discovery and knowledge that emerged from the fog of classroom boredom. Today I am an AVID learner, but that didn’t begin until after college. Only as an adult when I could take a subject and explore at my own pace, putting the pieces together as the story unfolded did I finally discover the joy of learning and the value of education.

Five in a Row was created to give children a less rigid approach to learning the content areas of education. (Note- Educators refer to two areas of learning; the skill areas and the content areas. Skill areas are basically the 3 R’s– reading, writing mechanics and math. Content areas are all of the other subjects such as history, science, literature, creative writing, fine arts, geography and more.)  There is no substitute for drill and practice in a systematic, sequential regimen for the skill areas of learning. However, for the content areas it’s an entirely different story. Each content subject is a treasure to be

A Plate Full of Marinade?

I’m thankful so many of you are enjoying the Five in a Row FoldNLearns! Thank you for sharing your feedback! I know we have enjoyed being able to freely enhance your Five in a Row experience. However, there’s one risk we took in sharing those with everyone.  That risk is

By |February 21st, 2013|Five in a Row, Homeschool, Practical Homeschooling|9 Comments

Are we Shortchanging our Children Today?

For blog subscribers: come to the blog to read this one. We need your input! Details at the end…

I have recently been reading information about children’s education in the 1940’s. Imagine my surprise when I turned one of the pages and saw a picture of several first graders busy at work on a classroom construction project. There was a girl hammering real nails into a board, and a young boy sawing a piece of real wood with a real hand saw, as well as other children busy at various tasks. My immediate reaction was that probably few schools today would ever inspire or allow children to be productive and meaningful in this way. Yet,

By |January 4th, 2013|Homeschool, Practical Homeschooling|2 Comments

Using Beyond Five in a Row – A Mishmash of Thoughts

We’ve talked about planning, supplemental resources, and the importance of a timeline. Today we have a mishmash of topics for you!

Essay Questions

In Beyond, you will find an essay question idea for every chapter. We strongly believe that learning to communicate clearly is foundational to any good education. Your student may or may not need to understand the complexities of physics in his chosen career field, but he will need to be able to communicate with others through both the spoken and written word. Use these essay questions as a starting point. Encourage your student to write frequently. If you have another idea for an essay question, by all means use it instead! Assign the length of each essay based on your student’s abilities and age. Younger students or students with learning disabilities may only be able to write 1-3 paragraphs. Older students, or those who excel in writing may want to write 1-3 pages or more. Feel free to adjust the assignment length as you find out what works for you. And don’t feel obligated to