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How Do We Respond to These People?

By Heather Idoni

Added Monday, January 11, 2010


 ==========================================================
                The Homeschooler's Notebook
     Encouragement and Advice for Homeschool Families
 ==========================================================
   Vol. 11 No 3                           January 11, 2009
                      ISSN: 1536-2035                              
 ==========================================================
   Copyright (c) 2010 - Heather Idoni, FamilyClassroom.net
 ==========================================================

  Welcome to The Homeschooler's Notebook!

  If you like this newsletter, please recommend it to a friend!
  And please visit our sponsors!  They make it possible.

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    =================
      IN THIS ISSUE:
    =================

  Notes from Heather
  -- Another Answer for Laura
  Helpful Tip
  -- Free Writing Resource
  Resource Review
  -- Notgrass Drama DVDs
  Reader Question
  -- What Can I Say to Them?
  Additional Notes
  -- Newsletter Archives
  -- Sponsorship Information
  -- Reprint Information
  -- Subscriber Information

    =======================
       Notes from Heather
    =======================

  Another Answer for Laura's "Different-Learning Daughter"

  ---

  A question from a mom with twin girls whose learning style is
  similar to her own and an older daughter with a different brain
  make-up was answered in our last issue here:

  http://www.familyclassroom.net/Articles20101/20100107.html

  Another reader wrote in with her own take on how to help Laura's
  daughter.

  Pam writes...

  "I was sorry to see that Laura in Missouri only had one answer.

  I would highly recommend a psycho educational evaluation to see
  where her issues are, and getting her hands on a copy of 'The Source
  for Dyslexia and Dysgraphia'
 and 'Games for Reading'.

  There are lots of ideas for activities to build phonemic awareness
  and other pre-reading skills that need to be in place before your
  daughter can be successful with any phonics reading method.  Until
  she builds those phonemic readiness skills, you may want to use a
  program like 'Picture Me Reading' to learn the Dolch words by sight.

  I would recommend doing a lot of reading to all three girls.  Good
  books can be enjoyed by all ages, and good readers still enjoy being
  read to and benefit from it.

  Your older daughter may need something to occupy her hands or body
  while listening to you read; colouring, a fidget, chewing gum, jumping
  on the bed or mini-tramp, whatever works best to keep her quiet and
  focused.  Some of these will help her focus while she is reading
  herself as well.

  Break down Language Arts and other school assignments to separate
  out individual reading and writing skills so that she isn't trying
  to accomplish everything at the same time.  Do some activities that
  focus on recognizing sight words; others that focus on learning
  letter sounds.  I highly recommend 'All About Spelling' level 1
  cards and lessons.

  There are also others that focus on learning from context, and others
  that focus on comprehending and appreciating literature (which you
  read to her, watch on video, etc.)

  You don't say whether writing is a problem, but assuming that it is,
  again work on pre-writing skills (fine motor coordination, lines and
  circles/sticks and loops, and work on separating the skills - actual
  letter formation, spelling, and composition (you scribe for her) -
  into separate activities rather than all combined.

  Stick to very short, high-interest, high-tactile/kinesthetic lessons
  and activities.  Use as many senses as possible.  Alternate
  quiet/focused activities with high-energy activities." -- Pam

  ---

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


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  and get a 2nd student registration FREE!)

  Hurry -- these codes are only good through the end of January, 2010.
  Visit this link to test drive your FREE DEMO lessons today!

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    ================
      Helpful Tip
    ================

  Free Writing Resource and Contest

  ---

  'In Our Write Minds' is a fantastic -- and free -- writing resource
  that offers homeschooling parents tons of simple, practical ideas
  for teaching and editing writing.  Here's just a taste of what
  parents can find at In Our Write Minds:

  - Writing games and activities: Lots of games and other suggestions
  for family fun, vocabulary-building, road trips, and more

  - Poetry: Step-by-step instructions for teaching cinquains, diamantes,
  cento poetry, and poems of comparison

  - Reluctant writers: Idea after idea to motivate and encourage your
  struggling or reluctant writer

  - College prep writing tips: tips for essay and research writing,
  developing a thesis statement, and using time wisely

  - Grammar: Mini-lessons on common grammar and punctuation faux pas

  - Holiday and seasonal ideas: writing activities with a holiday twist

  - Encouragement: Articles to support and encourage parents as you
  teach writing at home

  - Wordless Wednesday: Twice-a-month humor spotlighting bad signage
  (glaring spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors)

  And so much more!

  http://www.writeshop.com/blog/

  --

  CONTEST - 10 Stumbling Blocks to Writing

  "We're nearing the end of our series on '10 Stumbling Blocks to
  Writing', featuring common writing hurdles and suggestions for
  overcoming them.

  Leaving a comment at any 'Stumbling Blocks' article enters you
  into a drawing for a $25 WriteShop gift certificate.  You can
  earn up to eleven chances in the drawing by commenting on all
  eleven articles.  It's not too late to comment on any previous
  posts, either!  Here is the first article in the series:

  http://writeshop.com/blog/2009/10/26/10-stumbling-blocks-to-writing/

  Some of the stumbling blocks we're discussing:

  Lack of confidence
  Lack of motivation
  Limited writing vocabulary
  Perfectionism and self-criticism
  Laziness
  Procrastination
  Worry about parental criticism

  If you're looking for a great (and free) writing resource to pass
  on to your friends, I hope you'll point them to In Our Write Minds!"

  -- Kim Kautzer

  ---

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


    ==================
      Resource Review
    ==================

  Original Stage Productions presented by the Notgrass Company 
  Written and Directed by:  Mary Evelyn Notgrass 
  For more information or to order:  www.notgrass.com 
 
  Homeschool graduate Mary Evelyn Notgrass has turned her love for
  history and the theater into several stage productions performed by
  homeschool students and graduates in the small town of Cookeville, TN.
  Don't let the words "small town" fool you, though.  Each was performed
  with excellence and is glorifying to the Lord from the smallest
  costume and set detail to the full cast and original musical numbers.
  For the last several years the productions have been recorded and are
  available on DVD. 
 
  Miss Notgrass shares her gift with the students she works with to put
  on each year's production.  I know I'd love to have had an opportunity
  like this for my children!  Each of the shows are available on DVD and
  showcase original musical scores and choreography.  The plots all
  revolve around a specific time in history and feature songs from that
  period.  Her characters are well developed and the plot and sub-plots
  flow easily.  Titles include "Sign of Love - the Story of Thomas
  Gallaudet and the Founding of the American School for the Deaf", "I am
  Dreaming of America - Journey to Ellis Island, 1908", "Yellow Star -
  France, 1943", and "The Cross Behind the Curtain - Persecution in the
  U.S.S.R in 1964". 
 
  These are stage productions, and the sound and video reflect this.
  However, the editing has been well-done, and there are a variety
  of camera angles.  The sound quality is excellent considering the
  production environment.  Both dialogue and music are clearly rendered.
  The shows are wholesome, historically accurate, and uplifting.  Great
  family entertainment!


  -- Cindy Prechtel, http://www.HomeschoolingFromTheHeart.com


    ===============================
      Last Issue's Reader Question
    ===============================

  "We have FINALLY decided to homeschool my son.  He will be 5 in
  May and we will start Kindergarten at home.
 
  My question is this...

  We, of course, keep hearing from everyone that we should reconsider,
  that homeschooled kids are 'odd', and a guy that my husband works with
  has even gone so far as to say that I'm just wanting to continue to
  be a stay-at-home mom for longer and that's why I want to homeschool! 
 
  How do we respond to these people?  Also, I feel funny saying that
  we just don't like the public school system when I'm talking to a
  mom that sends her kids there! Thanks!!" -- M.


    =========================
      Our Readers' Responses 
    =========================

  "Some of the people who are raising these issues are genuinely
  interested and are asking you for information.  To them, you can give
  a well-thought-out response, giving as much or as little personal
  information as you choose.  A simple, 'We considered the options, and
  this is what will work best for our family right now' should be fine
  for the perfect stranger and doesn't place blame on the public schools
  (so it's fine for the mother who does send her kids to school). 
 
  Many times (perhaps most, if your experience is similar to lots of
  other homeschool parents), though, people aren't asking you a question;
  they are challenging you by means of asking personal questions that
  are none of their business.  Consider what is an appropriate response
  by thinking about how you would answer a similar question in another
  area of your life -- for instance if a stranger or acquaintance asked
  about your sex life.  Some possible responses are to just look at the
  other person as if you can't believe that they would make such a
  comment, or to say it in words, 'That's an awfully personal thing to
  ask!'  Either way, either leave or change the subject immediately."
  -- Brandel

  ---

  "I get the very same responses as my oldest is 5 and we live in a
  small town with a good school.  It is different than living in a city;
  here, choosing to homeschool is almost an insult.  What has helped me
  is reading books like R.C. Sproul, Jr.'s book on homeschooling, Susan
  Schaeffer Macaulay's 'For the Children's Sake' and others.  If you
  are very clear in your own mind on why homeschooling IS better for
  your son and family, then it's usually easy to give a tactful response
  to questioners.  It's when we ourselves aren't too sure that the
  answers come harder.  My standard answer goes something like this:
  'We believe that homeschooling our son is the best choice for him and
  us and we are excited about this new phase in our lives.'  Hope that
  helps.  Enjoy your time homeschooling!  And remember, 'love casts out
  fear'." -- Katherine

  ---

  "Regarding dealing with other people's negative reactions to home
  schooling -- you will need different responses for different people
  depending on the closeness of your relationship.  For instance,
  someone you don't know very well can be given a short response, but
  non-supportive grandparents will need longer, ongoing reassurance.
  Here are a few ideas for short responses:  

  'We care for her more than the best teacher in the world does, so
  of course we'll do a good job teaching her and preparing her for
  adulthood.'

  'We always were unconventional, you know. (ha! ha!)"

  'Oh, we definitely think we will do a better job of socializing her
  than a group of five year olds would!'

  'We are very concerned about the atmosphere in many schools.  The
  drugs, sex, violence, and anti-God teachings are not want we want her
  exposed to.'

  'Sure, I want to continue being a stay at home mom.  Why wouldn't I?'  

  'There has never been a better time to homeschool.  You wouldn't
  believe the incredible amount of available resources and teaching
  materials!'

  These are just a few ideas of quick and easy responses for those who
  don't need a long, drawn-out explanation.  For those who do, there
  are some great resources to learn more about the many shortcomings
  of the public school system.  I just found a link for a free e-book
  you may want to read at www.deliberatedumbingdown.com " -- Christy

  ---

  "Our 11 year old son has never attended a 'brick and mortar' school.
  His cousins are jealous because he 'doesn't have to go to school'...
  until they realize our son has to do math, reading, grammar, etc.
  just as they do.

  In general, I try NOT to get on the defensive with those I speak to.
  I point out the commonalities in our different choices for educating
  our children: 'Just like you, my husband and I are making decisions we
  think are best for our child at this time.  We are blessed to be
  living in a country and a time that allows all of us so many choices.'

  If they persist, then I share some of the 'cool things' we've done,
  like going to the State House and being a part of the process that
  makes our state laws; taking public speaking classes and seminars;
  making a chicken mummy when studying Ancient History; learning about
  the Pilgrims by going to Plimouth Plantation for their Homeschooling
  Day (We live in New England.).

  If 'socialization' is their stated concern, then I share that our
  son is in Scouts, children's choir, and attends a weekly homeschool
  co-op.

  If they have other stated concerns, then I may agree that homeschooling
  is not perfect, but then no system is perfect.  I do not attack
  whatever decision their family has made.  I share that our family
  makes this decision year by year, always considering our child's needs
  and how best to address them.  

  If conversation has gone on too long and I feel badgered, then I
  change the topic.  If I feel they are interested, then I will share
  more of our experiences, our values, and how we came to make this
  decision this year.

  In the end, it is your decision that you make in the best interest
  of your child and family at this time." -- Tricia D.

  ---

  "It's so difficult to maintain grace when people make comments like
  the ones you shared.  The fact that these people are threatened by
  your decision simply indicates that they are very insecure in what
  they are doing with their children.  Sometimes they are jealous that
  you have the courage to do what they know they should have done.
 
  One thing you can do is hold them accountable for what they say.  If
  someone says that homeschooled kids are odd, ask them to name the odd
  homeschooled children they know.  Ask them what they mean by 'odd'.
  You can assure them that in general, the homeschooled children you
  know are far more courteous and well-adjusted than most other children
  you know.  Invite them to a homeschool event where they can meet some
  homeschooled young adults.  The final product is often very impressive,
  as will your children be some day.
 
  If someone passes judgment on your reasons for homeschooling, without
  being defensive, ask the person on what he is basing his accusation.
  He probably won't have an answer.  Gently correct him by telling
  him that God has called you to this, and to do otherwise would be
  disobedience to God.  You really have no choice. 
 
  You can say all kinds of positive things about homeschooling without
  criticizing public schools.  When talking with a mother of public school
  kids, you can say what you like about homeschooling, but you don't have
  to say you don't like the public school.  I always refer to the public
  school as the 'government school'.  That term sometimes takes them
  aback, but they cannot deny that a government school is exactly what
  it is.
 
  Be very upbeat and confident when you discuss homeschooling with anyone.
  Show enthusiasm and excitement for what you're doing.  Convey that the
  final decision has been made, and that you have thoroughly researched
  all the options and you are certain that this is the best educational
  program for your children." -- Mary Beth

  ---

  "The quick answer for people is that it doesn't really matter
  what they think in the long run:  'My husband and I feel that
  this is best for our child.'  You don't have to get into it with
  other people if you don't want to.  You can give some vague
  reasons about class size or being better able to meet his needs
  if you want.  (Or anything else.)  But really, it doesn't matter
  what anyone other than your husband thinks (and that goes for
  family, too.  THEY are not the parents; you are.)  Be firm about
  it, saying it in a confident voice, and you will probably get
  very little reply.  People who want to argue it are usually a
  bit defensive and insecure about the choices they have made --
  they want validation that what they are doing is right.  You
  can't give that to them.  Give them the 'I respect your opinion
  and I hope you do mine, please pass the beans (change the
  subject)' reply. 
 
  For the public schooled friends:  'We all want our kids to have
  the best education possible, and isn't it nice that we have lots
  of options to choose from!'  If they continue to question, ask
  them if they would be asking the same questions of a friend whose
  children are going to private school.  Probably not.  

  For the co-worker saying that you just want to stay home:  'What
  does it matter to you?  Our finances are just fine and she doesn't
  HAVE to work.  Even if our child was going to school, I would
  want her to be there when he got home or was sick!'  Then maybe
  go on to talk about what a pain it is when a kid gets sick and
  both parents are working and trying to decide who stays home on
  what day to avoid the mad boss. 
 
  For the 'Home schooled kids are odd':  'You didn't know any odd
  kids when you went to school?  I knew some and they were odd from
  kindergarten to grade 12.  Maybe they wouldn't have been as odd
  if they could have had more limited interactions with people --
  after all, not everyone likes to be around 30 other people all
  the time.'
 
  If people are pressuring too much to reconsider, then you can tell
  them that the coming year is a trial run and after this year you
  and your husband will reevaluate to see if you will be continuing
  to home school.  This will get them off your back for awhile, and
  when you tell the glowing stories through the year, they will know
  that you will not be reconsidering.  Do not tell these people any
  of your problems -- save those for other home schoolers and people
  who truly understand why you are schooling the way you are.  

  Have fun this coming year -- watching my children learn to do all
  the things they have has been very rewarding to me and them!"
  -- Cheryl W.

  ---

  "First, I would say you have to get in the mind set that you know
  what's best for your child no matter what others think.  Who cares
  if a guy your husband works with thinks you just don't want to work?
  If this was a close family member like your mom or mother-in-law,
  that may justify some explanation of why you made this decision,
  but you don't owe anyone in your community an explanation of 'why'.
  I think this is one of the biggest hurdles to homeschooling --
  taking the risk to be misunderstood by many.  For the people who
  really matter in your life, time will be the ultimate test.  As
  your child learns and grows, the benefits of homeschooling will
  speak for themselves.  In the meantime, you must do what you feel
  is right for your family.

  Practically speaking, if someone makes comments like this co-worker
  about homeschoolers being odd, I put them on the offensive by
  politely asking, 'Oh, really? In what ways?'.  When I have done
  this most people have no real examples to back it up or they
  mention something they've seen on TV.  If their reply is negative
  I simply respond, 'It works well for our family'.  My husband once
  responded to my son's coach, 'Well, (our son's name) seems pretty
  normal, doesn't he?  I guess homeschooling works for our family.'

  With regard to moms who send their kids to the local school, you
  really don't have to comment on the school or your decision.  If
  you feel you need to say something other than simply that you
  homeschool, you can say why homeschooling is best for your kids
  rather than what's 'wrong' with the school where they send their
  children.  Just be ready with answers if asked.  Some people are
  genuinely curious about it.  I often respond with comments like,
  'I really enjoy the flexibility of homeschooling on my schedule'.
  Or, 'Homeschooling enables me to tailor my kids learning to their
  interests.  John loves Science so we do a lot of projects and field
  trips.'.  Good luck as you pursue this endeavor!" -- Michelle R.

  ---

  "To those who are truly interested or curious, tell them the truth.
  Tell them your son will benefit from it and that's all that matters.
  Tell them you AND your husband and have thought long and hard and
  have not made the decision lightly.  The public school system just
  isn't for your family.

  To those who are just being judgmental and have no real interest
  and will never agree with you (you'll be able to tell) -- These are
  the strangers who stop us in stores and ask why he's not in school
  or say that he'll be odd -- they don't care about me or my kids.
  They care about themselves and people doing things differently are
  doing things wrong.  I try once or twice with short, to the point
  answers, but if I get nothing but arguments and judgment, they get
  the answers I make up like 'our cult leader says we must' or 'I'm too
  lazy to get up that early to put them on a bus'.  I told a nagging
  old lady on a bus one time (who had been a school teacher) that I
  needed my kids home so I wouldn't have to do housework.  It always
  makes me laugh to see the jaws drop -- they always stop asking
  questions.  I don't recommend these answers to people who may call
  Social Services (Child Protective Services in some areas), but for
  the people you may never see again, it adds a little humour to my day.

  When I get asked about socialization (and you will), I always answer
  that I'm *doing* it to socialize him... or that the last people I
  want socializing him are strangers.  Or when I hear the 'Aren't you
  brave?' one I always say, 'Brave?  To hang out with my kids?' with
  this look of surprise.

  I've been at this for awhile and have become very good at figuring
  out what they are after -- if it's genuine interest or just looking
  to prove what a bad mom I am.  Once you hook up with a strong
  homeschool network, you'll find more people to hang out with that
  agree with you and think all kids are odd!" -- Sherri in Canada

  ---

  "I hear three questions.

  1. What do you say to people that are against you?
  2. What would you say to a friend that is choosing a different way
  to school?
  3. What do you say if they make a valid point?
 
  1. For the people that are against, you don't bother with them.
  You will not change their minds.  Time -- and seeing your child
  grow -- may, but nothing you say about homeschooling will.
 
  2. For a friend -- be tactful.  It's hard when you see the public
  schools going down the drain.  I say that it's the best choice for
  my kids and my family.

  3. Bring up a valid point -- some homeschooled kids are odd, but
  there are odd kids in public and private school, too.  My kids are
  ODD, but then my husband and I are odd, too, so my kids can't get
  away from it. ;-)  This one is the hard one.  Will it bug you that
  your son may stay up all hours reading books, or want to re-enact
  a war, volunteer, or know all the differences between the movie
  and his favorite book?  When kids are allowed to follow their own
  interests each one will be different and some people will think
  that is ODD.
 
  As to those other questions like socialization, or what will you
  do when... He will socialize with everyone he meets.  And you'll
  handle chemistry (or whatever) when you get to that point." -- Sydnee

  ---

  "Dear M. -- You do not owe the people who ask these questions anything,
  so just saying 'It was a personal choice we made as a family', is
  sufficient.  If you are only going to proceed with homeschooling
  after you have silenced all your critics, it will never happen.

  I am reminded of a story (probably apocryhal) about a writer for a
  newspaper who kept a form letter that he used to respond to all
  negative letters that he received.  No matter how vitriolic or
  far-fetched the criticism, he would always write the same thing
  back.  His letter was 10 words long, not including his signature.

  'Dear Sir or Madam, 
 
  You may be right.

  Sincerely yours - '

  So that's another option for you." -- Rick

  ---

  "Dear M. -- I’ll start with your last comment first.  Never say
  'We just don't like the public school system', especially to a
  family that does send their children to PS.  You can, however,
  carefully word the reasons why you don't care for public school
  in general terms that clearly define your personal preferences.

  As far as the remark that you just want to prolong being a stay-at-home
  mom, your husband needs to respond with "What would be wrong to want
  to be a stay-at-home mom?  There are tons of benefit for the kids,
  even if they were to go to public school.

  Truthfully, homeschooled kids *are* different, but in the most positive
  ways.  They know how to behave appropriately in all circumstances,
  they know how to relate to and speak with their peers, younger children,
  older children, and anyone -- even senior citizens.  The have more
  critical thinking skills and life skills -- not to mention that on the
  norm they excel in academics.

  My advice is to develop a tough skin and sometimes (as we say in my
  country) 'interpreta mi silencio' -- interpret my silence -- meaning
  'I don’t respond to dumb comments'.  Arm yourself with research on
  homeschooling; this is just one place where you can get started.

  Much success on your homeschool adventure!" -- Judy in Florida

  ---

  "As a homeschooler for 10 years I have heard it all, and have tried to
  come up with some witty answers.  You aren't going to change anyone's
  mind by debating or spitting out facts about how homeschoolers do
  better on standardized tests, etc.
 
  My best advice for you and your husband in response to the naysayers
  with 'I respect your opinion, however, homeschooling is the education
  choice that my husband (or wife) and I have made for our family' --
  and leave it at that! 
 
  Enjoy your homeschooling journey... it is worth every minute!" -- Chris

  ---

  "First of all, you might as well get used to hearing these 'thoughts'
  from those who have no idea what homeschooling is all about.  Secondly,
  find a support group and get involved with other homeschoolers that DO
  understand the lifestyle you are starting for your family.  You can't
  alienate yourself from those traditional-school-minded folks, but you can
  gain a lot of confidence from like-minded parents who see the advantages
  of homeschooling.  I would recommend finding info from www.nheri.org
  and www.hslda.org with statistics on the effectiveness of homeschooling.
  It will not only reinforce your decision, but will give you facts to
  inform those well-meaning adversaries about homeschool successes.
  Best wishes as you get started!" -- Lynda

  ---

  "My husband and I have decided to home school our only daughter and,
  not surprisingly, when my husband told some co-workers (male) at work,
  they made similar statements:  'Oh, looks like your wife likes to be
  a stay-at-home mom and doesn't *want* to work (insert chuckles).' 
 
  My husband deserves a gold star for responding this way: 'I'm glad my
  wife wants to stay home and home school.  It means my daughter gets
  one-on-one attention since she already measures ahead of those kids
  starting kindergarten.  My wife and I enjoy having the time to spend
  with our daughter on *our* time and not the school's schedule...
  and... I like my wife at home taking care of my child and the house!
  We are so blessed that we can choose this option!' 
 
  He then got into a discussion of being a 'man' and 'taking care of
  his girls' with his friends -- and you know, not one guy has said
  any more on the subject. 
 
  The same answer applies to those friends who send their children
  to public school.  There is no need to go into a great lengthy
  discussion about why you don't like the public school system.  As
  you do not appreciate others judging your decision to home school,
  you should not offer your dislike of public education.  Just stand
  your ground in the decision that you made for your family and your
  educational path for your children.  Public school may be the best
  option for your friend, as home school is the best option for you.
  Just be confident in what is right for your family and your child.
 
  In addition, we often get so caught up in what other people think
  that we forget about what that statement really entails.  You are
  a blip on your friend's radar screen -- a momentary conversation.
  After all, do you sit around and discuss your friend's choice to
  send her children to public school?  Is your time consumed with
  thinking of others' plans and decisions in their lives that don't
  really include you? 
 
  Often we need to readjust our thinking and truly understand that
  other people are more into their own lives and thoughts than they
  are about you and yours.  That moment when you receive a comment
  that may slight your choice to home school is just that - a moment.

  Take it easy, relax, don't worry or put much stock in others' opinions.
  The two most important people (you and your husband) know what's best
  for your family - so make up your mind and put one foot in front of
  the other, hold your head high and enjoy the decision you've made.
 
  Who knows -- maybe your confidence in your decision and your son's
  success will make others curious to know how they can follow your lead!
 
  Best of encouragement to you." -- K.

  ---

  [MORE replies coming soon -- check back later today! -- Heather]


    =========================
     Answer our NEW Question
    =========================

  "I have a question - perhaps strange.  My two sons, ages 5 and 7,
  have been homeschooled since last February.  We have made HUGE
  strides in learning - reading, spelling, math, Bible study, science,
  etc.  It's been fun and rewarding (and fairly frustrating too!).
  However, my question is this - when we are not 'doing school' or in
  school mode, they seem to have trouble remembering what they have
  learned.  For instance, every time their grandparents are around,
  they want the boys to read something to them, or they will propose
  simple math problems for them to answer in the course of conversation,
  and these SIMPLE questions seem to stump them every time!  They
  honestly appear to not know anything, and the 7 year old is a math
  whiz!  So, am I doing something wrong?  Are they not retaining the
  info as they should?  They do fine when we are in 'school', so I
  know they are learning, but when called to do it on the spot, they
  stumble.  Any advice appreciated." -- Amy in MI

  --- 

  Would you like to share your own experience or advice with Amy? 

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


    =====================
     Ask YOUR Question
    =====================

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

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


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    =====================
     ADDITIONAL NOTES
    =====================

  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.]


    ===========================
       REPRINT INFORMATION
    ===========================

  No part of this newsletter (except subscription information
  below) may be copied and/or displayed in digital format online
  (for instance, on a website or blog) without EXPRESS permission
  from the editor.  Individuals may, however, forward the newsletter
  IN ITS ENTIRETY to *individual* friends (not email groups).  For
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  etc.) please direct your request to:  mailto:Heather@FamilyClassroom.net

 





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