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News from Philly, TeacherTipster, Learning Japanese

By Heather Idoni

Added Thursday, October 20, 2011
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Vol. 12 No. 39, October 20, 2011, ISSN: 1536-2035
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(c) 2011, Heather Idoni - www.FamilyClassroom.net
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Welcome to The Homeschooler's Notebook!

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

Not a subscriber? Get your own subscription to The Homeschooler's Notebook here:
http://www.familyclassroom.net

And please visit our sponsors -- they make our publication possible.

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Have you heard about the Homeschool Learning Network?!

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=================
IN THIS ISSUE:
=================
Notes from Heather
-- News from Philly
Winning Website
-- Kids-in-Mind.com
Helpful Tips
-- TeacherTipster.com
Reader Question
-- Suggestions for Japanese
Additional Notes
-- Newsletter Archives
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

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

Finally - Some Very Good News!

My dear readers,

It has been a little over 2 years since I first shared some information of importance to the homeschooling community that culminated in a legal battle to defend my first amendment right to freedom of speech. Then in August 2010, after learning the news that I was being sued, Helen Hegener, publisher of Home Education Magazine, made a brave move to publicly bear witness to the truth of my words. Her stand came at a great price as she was added to the lawsuit as well.

The great news is that our case has come to a very positive end at last. I can't go into detail at this time, but I can assure you that our legal right to share factual information and opinion on this issue has been preserved in its entirety.

I really want to thank EVERYONE who has lifted up a prayer for me during this season of uncertainty. Knowing I was never alone and having friends to share the burden made all the difference. THANK YOU.

Giving all the glory to God - Heather

---

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

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

All About Spelling

"Outstanding products and customer service! This is a program that works and I HIGHLY recommend it to everyone looking for a great spelling program and beautiful, enjoyable early readers. The reader books will be treasured and passed down for years to come in our home! And we now have our second child going through AAS Level 1. Both children have had such great success with it and I know my younger two will as well when they are ready for it! Thank you so much!" -- Breanna

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================
Winning Website
================

Movie Ratings Site
www.kids-in-mind.com

This website enables adults to determine whether or not a particular movie is appropriate for their children based on 3 objective ratings using a scale from 0 to 10.

==============
Helpful Tips
==============

"Just this week, I found www.TeacherTipster.com. I haven't spent A LOT of time there, but I want to make the KABOOM game. You write the math facts (or whatever you are working on) on popsicle sticks. Keep the popsicle sticks in a container like cleaning wipes come in. For every 6-7 facts that are in there, there is a 'KABOOM' stick. Students take turns pulling out a stick, answering the question and checking each other. If they have a correct answer, they keep the stick. If they get a KABOOM stick, they lose all their points/collected sticks. TeacherTipster is a classroom teacher, but I think things can be adapted for homeschool."

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

"Anyone out there know of any Japenese course that can be taken by homeschoolers that is reasonably priced for a high school freshman? My son is interested in taking a class in Japenese. Thanks so much in advance." -- Bonita

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

"You might look into the www.BYKI.com website (Before You Know It). It has a wide range of languages to study. I haven't used it extensively, but it looks like a Rosetta Stone-approach/ natural language approach. And it is free! It could be a helpful resource as an introduction to gauge your student's interest and the appeal of the language." -- Lisa

---

"My 9 year-old has also decided to start learning Japanese, so I went through this search a few months ago.

There are a number of free resources we have tried out for new Japanese learners:

Kids Web Japan has a few very simple lessons that go through greetings and small talk. They also have some short anime lessons. It won't get him far, but it's a pretty gentle way to start:
web-japan.org/kidsweb/language/index.html

The Japan Broadcasting Corporation has a set of 50 lessons on their site for free:
www3.nhk.or.jp/lesson/english/index.html

Nohongo.fm is an internet radio station playing Japanese lessons 24 hours a day.
www.nihongo.fm

The Japanese Page has lessons and podcasts for beginners covering all sorts of things, like telling time, common greetings, colors, etc.
www.thejapanesepage.com/beginners

In the end, my son decided that he preferred to learn to speak the language before trying to figure out the writing system, and after sampling Pimsleur Japanese on the web, we picked up the CD set on Ebay. He's doing one lesson per week, listening to the lesson of the week daily till he's mastered it.

He's learning the basics quite well from the CDs, but since he's a kid, he wants vocabulary that isn't necessarily going to be covered by the course. He's found a friend in Google Translate there. While I wouldn't trust it to write love letters for me, it is pretty good for finding the translation and pronunciation of random nouns.

The other sites we've found have still been useful, along with Japanese language radio and movies -- for a bit of immersion into the language even when he's not studying." -- Wendy

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New Reader Question
=====================

"I have been working with my son on pre-k spelling. I try to make learning fun. He is only 4 & I am new to homeschooling. At first he was excited. He still likes to learn new words, but is bored with reviewing. 'I already know these' is what he tells me. Any ideas on ways to review spelling words in a fun way? Any help is appreciated!" -- Katie

---

Would you like to respond to Katie's question?
Please send your email to: hn-answers@familyclassroom.net

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

Do you have a question for our readers?

Send it to mailto:hn-questions@familyclassroom.net and we'll answer it in an upcoming 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.]

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

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