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Heather's Introduction, Virtual Field Trips, Dawdling Children

By Heather Idoni

Added Friday, November 18, 2005

The Homeschooler's Notebook
Encouragement and Advice for Homeschool Families
Vol. 6 No 46 November 18, 2005
ISSN: 1536-2035
Copyright (c) 2005 Heather Idoni, FamilyClassroom.net. All Rights Reserved.

Welcome to the Homeschooler's Notebook!

If you like this newsletter, please recommend it to a friend --
We all need to be helping each other with our homeschooling!

Directions for subscribing and unsubscribing are below.



Notes from Heather:
-- An Introduction
Helpful Tips
-- Online Fieldtrips
Question of the Week:
-- Your Questions
Reader's Response
-- Your Answers
Heather's Picks
-- Homeschool Chat
-- Subscriber Information
-- Sponsorship Information


This is my very first newsletter as the new editor, so I thought I'd
take this opportunity to get acquainted and share with you a little
of my vision for encouraging homeschool parents.

First of all, I want to let you know that I am very excited to continue
Lynn's legacy of bringing you excellent ideas and resources, as well
as sharing my own homeschooling journey. Lynn, I appreciate your
vision of these past years and your willingness to let me carry on!
Your contributions to this ministry and your transparency as you
have shared your own homeschooling journey have been a blessing
to many over the years. It is impossible to measure the impact
you have had with the encouragement and resources you have
shared. You will be missed!

Although we all have different ages of children and different back-
grounds, and we are at different points on this road, we all share
this one thing in common -- we have chosen to raise and educate
our children primarily in the context of our family home.

Some of us have only one child, while some have 10 or more!
Some would consider themselves to be unschoolers, using only life
for our classroom, others of us are more eclectic in our approach,
while some have found success in using a structured curriculum or
an umbrella school. And there are probably 200 or more varied
methods to home school within that spectrum!

While many of us have faith-based home schools, I understand that
some of our readers do not have any religious reason for choosing
to home educate. I respect that difference! Although my faith in
God is what compelled me initially to begin this journey, and it will
always be my most obvious reason for homeschooling, I now have
an arsenal of reasons why I personally refuse to conform to the
popular idea that public education is a "good thing".

So, although I'm sure your journey is very different from mine, I'm also
sure we will find much in common as we share our lives together!

We have this in common. We homeschool.

My vision for this newsletter is to faithfully bring you practical
information, useful resources, and inspirational insight. I know we all
need encouragement from time to time! None of us is superwoman
-- or super"man" for that matter. I know of hundreds - even thousands
- of single mothers and fathers who are going it alone on this quest.
I know there are thousands reading this newsletter who are raising
and loving "special needs" children. I know there are days when you
wonder if you can keep on. I hope to encourage you all!

As we get to know each other over these next weeks, I would
encourage you to share your questions and answers, as well as your
favorite tips and ideas. Lynn always made this YOUR newsletter...
and I want to keep it that way!

Thanking you for the warm welcome,

Heather Idoni



[Here's your chance! Send YOUR ideas along to

This week's helpful tip is from Jodi in Iowa:

"I received this link from a member of my homeschool group. Now
that winter is setting in, I thought it was a great time to check out
this site. There are free online field trips with downloadable work-
sheets and a chance to ask experts about the topic. I'm definitely
going to try these out for a fun change of pace."


This looks like a great resource! Thanks, Jodi.


Have you a burning question that you can't ask just anyone?
Send it to HN-questions@familyclassroom.net and we'll see
if a wise subscriber can't help you out.

This Week's NEW Question

"I have twins in 5th grade that I am homeschooling. This is our
second year. I have fibromyalgia and get tired very easily. There
are days we don't do school. We have even gone a week without
any formal school. I feel very guilty when we don't do any school
but there are days when I just don't have the energy. They, of
course, are not motivated to work on their own! Should I really
push myself to make sure we do school almost everyday?"


Do you have an answer for our reader?
Send your responses to: HN-answers@familyclassroom.net

Last Week's Question

"My 11-year-old ADHD, very bright son takes HOURS to complete
math worksheets that should take about an hour or so. He's
winning and it's making me crazy! Limit setting, discipline, giving
him shorter section of the worksheet hasn't improved anything.
I know he can do the work...any suggestion is appreciated!" - Penny

Your Responses

[NOTE: My publication of these responses does not necessarily
mean that I endorse a product, activity, or suggestion.]


"Yes! I have a daughter that is quite bright in Math but would s-t-r-e-t-c-h
it out for HOURS when she could've done it in 45 minutes to an hour. It
was enough to drive me to the funny farm! I felt like I was always nagging
at her to hurry up and get it done! I tried everything! Heartfelt talks,
scripture, discipline, you name it. Finally, we made up a "funny money"
system. My husband made up some pretend money with his picture on
the ones, mine on the fives, and my 3 month old's on the tens. They get
"money" for getting to school on time, and more importantly they get $3
for finishing their work by noon, $2 if it's not until 2:30, and $1 if they get
it done by 4:00. If they don't get it done before the school day the next
day they have to pay me $2. I have prize boxes that have $10, $20, and
$30 prizes in them. My daughter has gotten her work done almost every
day by noon since we started this two months ago and we are ALL a lot
happier around here! Thank you Jesus for the great idea!"

Christy in Bothell, WA


"I am fairly new to homeschooling, but I have been researching it for about
6 years. My question to you is:

1. Are you sure your child is ADHD, or could he be a Right-Brain learner?
Right-brain learners are often diagnosed ADD or ADHD because many
subjects are taught to the Left-brain, especially math. If you are giving
him worksheets (which are a L-brain learning tool) and he is R-brained, he
will quickly become distracted and discouraged. There are online tests for
L/R brain (I would have him take at least 2, they are kind of fun anyway) and
there are lots of ways to teach math to a R-brain child. Most of them are
hands-on, not worksheets and textbooks.

2. If he is truly ADHD, then worksheets are simply going to be torture to him
(and you!), and I would suggest finding a math program that uses manipu-
latives (hands on) instead. Or you might try having him work as long as he
can focus (5 min? 10 min?), then have him run around the house or jump on
a trampoline for a few minutes, then back to another set of math problems."


[Editor's thoughts] Penny, it might not be even the ADHD causing the
problem, but something a little more "normal" -- like puberty! Here is an
article for all boy-moms to read at my HomeschoolingBOYS.com website:



Here is an incredible free online resource for homeschooling parents
that is very little known. It is a fully staffed, ultra-safe chat room!
If you haven't ever participated in a "live" online environment, here is
your chance to see what it is all about. HomeschoolChat.us, other-
wise known as "The Homeschool Encouragement Center" is a place
to get to know other homeschooling parents all over the world. You
can interact in a safe environment at any hour of the day, or come
just during scheduled times for certain topic chats. Their hosted chats
cover a large range of topics, from lapbooking, notebooking, and
Charlotte Mason style, to "large families" and single parent home-
schooling. Founded in 2002, the Homeschool Encouragement Center
has featured special guests such as Dr. Jay Wile and Amanda Bennett,
and continues to serve the homeschool community by meeting needs
that often demand the quick attention of a "live" friend.

Stop in and get encouraged!



There are opportunities for you to be a sponsor of this
newsletter. If you are interested, drop an e-mail to
marketing@stretcher.com with "Homeschoolers-Notebook"
as the subject. We'll send you some information on how to
be a part of this ministry!


All contributed articles are printed with the author's prior
consent. It is assumed that any questions, tips or replies to
questions may be reprinted. All letters become the property of
the "Homeschooler's Notebook". [Occasionally your contribution
may have to be edited for space.]

Again, I welcome you to the group! Feel free to send any
contributions to HN-articles@familyclassroom.net or

You can also find helpful links at our website:


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Next - 'Real Life' Relaxing, Chronic Illness, Tea Time!
Previous - Lynn's Farewell, BrainChild.com, Spelling Help

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