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Wilberforce Project Contest, Maggie's Earth Adventures, Curriculum for the Blind

By Heather Idoni

Added Friday, May 04, 2007

The Homeschooler's Notebook
Encouragement and Advice for Homeschool Families
Vol. 8 No 35 May 4, 2007
ISSN: 1536-2035
Copyright (c) 2007 - Heather Idoni, FamilyClassroom.net

Welcome to the Homeschooler's Notebook!

If you like this newsletter, please recommend it to a friend!





Notes from Heather
-- $10,000 Prize Contest
Helpful Tips
-- Crazy Libs
Winning Website
-- Maggie's Earth Adventures
Reader Question
-- Homeschooling a Blind Child
Additional Notes
-- Searchable Archive
-- Our Email Group
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

Notes from Heather

William Wilberforce Commemoration and Contest

The year 2007 is the 200th anniversary of William Wilberforce's
triumph over the British and American slave trade. In honor of
this anniversary, the Wilberforce Project is sponsoring a contest
for all high school students -- with a grand prize of $10,000 and
$50,000 in total awards! I checked with spokesperson Sheila Weber
and she confirmed that high school level homeschoolers are FULLY
eligible to participate, too. You can find all the details here:


Looks like a wonderful opportunity!


Do you have an idea for a feature article or something to share?
Send your emails to: heather@familyclassroom.net



Helpful Tip


"My children and I nearly fell out of our chairs laughing when we
did some of these activities. My children literally screamed with
laughter. We did The Knight and the Dragon, Moby Dick and The
Declaration of Independence. Unfortunately, we did this right before
bedtime, and now both my children are bouncing off the walls. Oh well,
I guess we'll have an extra long story time tonight. Maybe I can find
a boring book, though my children love read-aloud time, and they don't
think too many things are boring if I am reading to them. :-)

I hope you guys enjoy this!" -- Kelly


Do you have an idea, experience, or tip to share? Please write!
Send to: HN-ideas@familyclassroom.net

Winning Website

Maggie's Earth Adventures – http://www.missmaggie.org

Great educational games for kids, lesson plans for teachers to
complement the stories on the site as Maggie goes on several adven-
tures. The site takes awhile to load, but my kids find it worth
the wait. The games are great - GEOSPY is one of our favorites!

-- Cindy, www.HomeschoolingFromTheHeart.com

Last Issue's Reader Question

Curriculum for the Blind

"Does anyone know of any homeschooling curriculum that is made for
blind children? My son is Cortically Blind and we had hoped to
homeschool him. However, I can't seem to find any curriculum that
he would be able to use. Any ideas?" -- Sarah

Our Readers' Responses

"One good resource for you, or any parent with special needs children,
is NATHHAN -- www.nathhan.com. They have articles and lists of
materials for blind, visually impaired, and any other area in which
children face challenges. They also offer a network of support among
parents who deal with similar issues." -- Mary Beth


"Hi, I am blind myself. I am in college, and I tutor both blind and
sighted students regularly. I also homeschooled a first grader. I
have tons and tons of resources I'd love to share! I also have many
of the tools, and the information you may need to be able to pick the
curriculum you need. Feel free to email me at branlw @ sbcglobal.net
and I'd be happy to help." -- Brandy W.


"I would suggest literature-based studies such as Ambleside Online.
I believe that Ambleside Online and Old Fashioned Education are based
completely on public domain works that you can download from Gutenberg.
Since these are simply text files, you can have your computer read
them using text-to-voice technology like Speak Aloud (so he could
'read' them on his own).

There are also sites that offer many of these public domain works
recorded on mp3. Check out audiobooksforfree.com, librivox.com, etc.
Search for podcasts on different subjects, see what your library
offers on tape/cd, etc.

You can do unit studies, make models of maps, dioramas, do other
crafts, etc." -- Pam


"I don't have any experience with this, but I do know of a yahoo group
dedicated to helping families who homeschool children with physical,
developmental, medical, communication, or learning difficulties. The
link is: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/GIFTSNC
The group is based in North Carolina, but I think membership is open
to anyone anywhere." -- Jean in NC


"I taught special education for almost twenty years before coming home
to homeschool my children. You can use just about any curriculum you
choose, or none at all, depending on your homeschooling style. Simple
modifications will need to be made. Children with CVI have difficulty
distinguishing between background and foreground and are easily frus-
trated by 'busy' visual stimuli. Keep it simple. Dark black outlines
on a white background are easiest. Some CVI children can distinguish
bright colors, so flourescent highlighters and paper can help. One of
the best resources is the Library for the Blind and Physically Impaired.
With a doctor's diagnosis, your child will receive a machine that plays
books on tape. It is a specialized machine, not a regular tape recorder.
You can order from a vast array of titles and textbooks. They are sent
free of charge directly to your door. There are also many types of
adaptive devices that you can order to assist with daily tasks. Mobility
training will be the most important. Contact your local hospital for
information on classes in your area. Also, per the federal special
education laws, you can avail yourself of specialized services through
your local school system while continuing to homeschool. There is a
set number of hours per week, but depending on your child's needs, he
could have speech services, physical therapy, vision therapy, etc. 2-3
hours per week according to an individualized plan that is written and
ageed upon. Hope this helps." -- Andrea B.

Answer our NEW Question

"I need some advice. My 7 year old daughter had a complete meltdown
this morning over her math facts. She kept wanting me to give her the
answers and when I tried to direct her to the math manipulatives that
we have on hand, she kept crying out that she doesn't like blocks.
When I suggested any other manipulatives she proceeded to tell me that
she doesn't like ANY of them!

What other ways can she use to learn her facts without the use of math
manipulatives or flashcards? She wanted to use a calculator but I told
her that I didn't think that she should use one. Should I allow her to
use one until she gets her facts down? I don't know what to do."
-- Heather L.


Do you have some ideas for Heather?

Please send your answer to: HN-answers@familyclassroom.net

Ask YOUR Question

Do you have a question you would like our readers to answer?

Send it to HN-questions@familyclassroom.net and we'll see
if we can help you out in a future issue!

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Tags: William Wilberforce, crazy libs, mad libs, Maggie's Earth Adventures, GeoSpy, homeschool geography curriculum, geography games, homeschooling curriculum for the blind, NATHHAN, Ambleside Online, special needs homeschooling, home education tips

Next - Resourcing the Gifted Artist, AO Lifepac Tip, Math Meltdown!
Previous - Fostering Children, Truth Seekers Mysteries, Homeschool Haven in Detroit?

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