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A Book for Joy, Grammar Land, Secular Support Info

By Heather Idoni

Added Thursday, January 20, 2011
Vol. 12 No. 6, January 20, 2011, ISSN: 1536-2035
© 2011, Heather Idoni - www.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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Find a better way to learn math in 2011! Click here to try AdaptedMind completely FREE.

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Notes from Heather
-- Book Recommendation for Joy
Helpful Tips
-- Three Tips to Choose From!
Reader Question
-- Secular HSLDA-Type Resource?
Additional Notes
-- Newsletter Archives
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

Notes from Heather

Reader Feedback - A Book Recommendation for Joy in Georgia


"I can totally identify with Joy's struggles with homeschooling, as my first year was SO tough, and it has taken us over a year to land upon methods that work for us. I wanted to share a free PDF of one of the most encouraging homeschooling books I've ever read. It's a quick read, but it is packed full of wisdom and is a wonderful testimony of a homeschooling mom.

Here is the link, but it can also be found if you type 'Leigh Bortins PDF' into any search engine:


Even though my husband and I wrote down our goals and vision for our family before we embarked on our homeschooling journey, if we had read this book during our first year of homeschooling, it would have helped us to clarify how to achieve our goals and find curriculum and methods that best suited our family.  We are really having the time of our lives now, which does not mean we never have a tough day - those are going to exist regardless of whether or not we homeschool - but it does mean I truly enjoy sharing the learning experience with my children, which is something I could not say a year ago!"

--  Brandy in Tennessee


Your feedback is always welcome! -- mailto:heather@familyclassroom.net

Helpful Tips

Grammar Lessons for Younger Children

"One thing [to make learning grammar more fun] is a book like Grammar-Land: Grammar in Fun for the Children of Schoolroom-shire by M. L. Nesbitt:


It turns grammar explanation into a story that I think makes learning the different parts of speech a lot more fun."

-- Carolyn via HomeschoolingBOYS.com


Scholastic Teacher Express Dollar Days thru January 31st

Apparently, Scholastic is offering over 500 PDF downloadable teacher resources for only $1 each through the end of January. You might want to check it out and see if there is something you can use!



A January Freebie - Free 2-Year Reading Program from Funnix


"Free download of their 2 year program during January.  It does require a sign-up form, but no credit card information is requested. I just signed up and so I don't have experience with the program, but I am trying it out."

-- Vicki, via HomeschoolBlessings.com

Last Issue's Reader Question

"First, let me say thanks for all of the great resources you have provided - it's much appreciated! I was wondering if there are other support organizations for homeschoolers such as provided by HSLDA, but an organization that would be for secular homeschoolers. Thank you very much." -- Michele V.

Our Readers' Responses

[from the editor...]

Dear Michele,

You might want to look into this website.  It is membership-based and offers guidance:

National Home Education Legal Defense -- http://www.nheld.com

There is also an email group available where you can ask questions of attorneys who are dedicated to preserving homeschooling rights -- Association of Home School Attorneys:


"This list is an opportunity for homeschoolers to contact homeschooling attorneys and experts about homeschooling legal and litigation issues. It is an informal network of attorneys and legal experts that are concerned with litigation pending and threatened against homeschoolers. Its primary purpose is to exchange legal information within the profession, and to educate and support attorneys and experts involved in homeschool litigation. A referral list of attorneys and legal experts may be maintained. Since specific factual situations can change the legal advise given, logging on to the AHSA-USA list does not create an attorney-client relationship with AHSA-USA, any member of AHSA-USA, or any attorney responding to questions on this list, and AHSA-USA recommends that an attorney be consulted for legal advise pertaining to specific situations."

You might want to ask these folks about other resources, too!

-- Heather

Answer our NEW Question

[Answers to our new question will appear in the 1/27 HIGH SCHOOL issue.]


"My now 14 year old son was repeating the sixth grade when I took him out of public school almost two years ago. He is very bright, but is somewhat lazy, lacks initiative, and has lost nearly all his self-confidence. He was diagnosed with ADHD early on, but takes no medication now, nor is his hyperactivity hard to control any longer. He does have trouble concentrating and staying on task, but these issues are not insurmountable in the home setting.

When he would ask for help in elementary school, he would be reminded that he had already been told once. As a result, he gave up on himself and his schoolwork. Since then we have made an attempt at homeschooling and have made some progress. I use the word 'attempt' because we have not really been hard at it. We sort of took the 'unschooling' approach at first, but we are using some purchased curriculum, and have touched on all required subjects.

Naturally, as you all know, so much is learned just from life! And from answering questions your children ask when you're at the grocery store, or in a museum, etc. My question, or concern really, is that we have been too lax and might be too far behind. He has to take a standardized test every three years here in Georgia, so it is not time for him to do that yet. Should I be concerned that we need to hit the books harder, especially since he will 'be in the ninth grade' next year? He is a year behind his peers according to public school, and I am not overly concerned with their labels, but I do know that there needs to be a point at which we say, 'Okay, we're in high school now'.

Am I making my concerns understood, or is this all just muddle? *smile* At what point do you 'know' you're doing enough, or if you need to do more? Being a typical 14 year old, he loves computers and playing video games. He has expressed an interest in going to Technical College one day to pursue his interest in computers and gaming." -- Debbie W. in Georgia

Would you like to respond to Debbie's concerns?
Please send your reply to hn-answers@familyclassroom.net

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