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Teaching Writing, Video Field Trips, French for Young Children

By Heather Idoni

Added Friday, January 25, 2008

The Homeschooler's Notebook
Encouragement and Advice for Homeschool Families
Vol. 9 No 7 January 25, 2008
ISSN: 1536-2035
Copyright (c) 2008 - Heather Idoni, FamilyClassroom.net

Welcome to the Homeschooler's Notebook!
If you like this newsletter, please recommend it to a friend!


Will Your Kids Be Ready to Handle The Financial
Challenges of the 21st Century?

Recent statistics reveal that young adults are not
prepared to handle money in the real world:

+ 18-24 year olds represent the fastest growing age
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+ The average credit card carrying college kid is
strapped with over $7,800 in credit card debt!

While the facts about young adults and money in today’s
economy are worrisome, the good news is there’s hope.

You can help secure a bright future for your kids by
learning the “7 Keys to Raising Money Smart Kids” found at:



Notes from Heather
-- Teaching Children to Write
Helpful Tips
-- Science Biography Site
Winning Website
-- Meet Me at The Corner
Reader Question
-- French for Little Ones?
Additional Notes
-- Searchable Archive
-- Our Email Group
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

Notes from Heather

Teaching Your Children to Write

Barbara Frank -- www.cardamompublishers.com -- one of our readers
and a regular guest contributor, just released our four-page special
report called 'Teaching Your Children to Write'. She wrote to let
me know she wanted to offer it FREE to readers of our newsletter!
I really value Barb's wisdom and the advice she gives in the report
is solid.

The report is available in PDF (printable) format and includes both
ideas for teaching children (of all ages) to write, as well as tips
on how parents can prepare themselves for this task.

It is one of the reports she sells at homeschool conventions with
great response -- and she wanted to share it with us at no charge!
(THANKS, Barb!) :-)

Here is the link:



-- Heather


Do you have comments to share? Please do!
Send your emails to: heather@familyclassroom.net



Helpful Tip

"Go to this website and you will find some very informative
biographies in science that are for the layman.


This episode -- http://www.uh.edu/engines/epi73.htm -- is about
the father of Algebra, Evariste Galois."

-- Jim in Michigan


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

Winning Website

Meet Me at the Corner - www.meetmeatthecorner.org

What a neat idea! Get kids to think about the interesting places
right where they live, have them create a video giving a "virtual
tour" of the place for other kids and upload to this website.

It's video field trips by-kids, for-kids. Videos are submitted
from children around the world! Right now they are having a contest
encouraging kids to interview the most interesting person they
know for submission to the site. This is a great way for kids to
develop storytelling, writing and tech/computer skills. Kids can
work individually, or you could get several kids together to
develop the story and decide how best to present their field trip.
The site has tips on how to get started, including how to create a

-- Cindy at www.HomeschoolingFromTheHeart.com

Last Issue's Reader Question

"I'm a mom to a bright 4-year-old who is learning French from me.
I earned my French degree from Indiana University. I've contacted
my college's French department, as well as both the Alliance
Française in New York and Chicago, to ask about a resource manual
with lesson plans for teaching French to toddlers. Recommendations
for a foreign language cable station, various websites for books
and DVDs, are the feedback I've gotten. What's frustrating is that
rather than jumping around between websites, I'd like to fine one
excellent site for all of my toddler teaching needs. Does it exist?

Early on, I'd made my own laminated French-English picture flash-
cards and my son's vocabulary is quite good. Now I want to immerse
him into the language and keep him challenged. Are there any sug-
gestions for a more organized lesson plan – on how to add structure,
variety, and entertained learning to my toddlers love of French?
Thank you!" -- Deborah

Our Readers' Responses

"I haven't tried the Memoria Press French, but their other mater-
ials are top notch, period. I'm a 'junkie' so I've looked at
every company that I wanted to study subject-ware for. Memoria
does things that make it easy to adapt for beginners to those who
are further along. For the toddler, learning to write, read and
all those pieces, I'd recommend Memoria without even thinking
about it. Be blessed as you continue your journey." -- Sybil


"I would recommend http://www.poissonrouge.com -- Basically French
(and English and I think Spanish) Preschool games." -- Sandy in Utah


"I have not seen language curriculum for toddlers, but I would say
don't use it. I was an exchange student to Costa Rica for two
months in high school. I knew the present tense when I arrived.
After a summer of using my Spanish-English dictionary and being
'immersed' in the language I became fluent and skipped a whole year
of Spanish. Currently, I take my seven kids back every other year
to visit my Costa Rican family for a month. After two trips (only
two months), a couple of my kids can understand Spanish and I
expect one or two to become fluent after the next trip. Now, I
realize not everyone can do that, but what you *can* do is use
the language every day and interact with other French speakers.
I have employed Spanish speaking help from time to time and had
them only speak Spanish to my kids. It keeps my fluency and
helps them.

Our kids learned English without flash cards or curriculum and
they can learn another language that way as well. Every so often
change the language on a DVD and let them watch the movie that way.
I don't let my kids watch the Disney channel at home but they do
in Costa Rica so they get used to hearing the language. Use the
language and they will pick it up.

Bridges Abroad offers immersion programs all over the world.
You can live with a host family and take four hours of language
a day. I have a friend who is doing it with her 8 and 10 year
old daughters for five weeks. She took them out of public schools
to do this. The rest of the day they are exploring the country
and enjoying the beach. You can also earn college credit if you
meet certain criteria." -- Sonya

Answer our NEW Question

"I'm having a problem teaching my 12-year-old daughter how to
choose which math process to use in a given problem. She may
add when she should multiply or subtract when she should divide.
This occurs with word or 'story' problems." -- Kay in WV


Do you have helpful suggestions for Kay and her daughter?
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!

Need Immediate Help?

Visit our Homeschool Encouragement Center! This is a live 24/7
'chat' area where you can talk live to our homeschool counselors
by typing in a box. When you get there, just introduce yourself
and let them know that Heather sent you!

This ultra-safe chat is supervised by experienced moms who are
there to serve and share their wisdom... or just offer a listening

Check out our schedule of daily chats and jump right in! :-)


[Note: This ministry is geared toward Christian parents, but all
are welcome. You may need to download a Java program to utilize
this service. Email Luanne@educationforthesoul.com if you have
any technical difficulties.]

Our Searchable Newsletter Archive

Access the Homeschool Notebook issues you have missed...
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...or you can search on a specific word or phrase in issues all
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consent. It is assumed that any questions, tips or replies to
questions may be reprinted. All letters become the property of
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