"" -- A Homeschooler's Notebook Subscriber.
An interactive, FREE, twice-monthly ezine packed with great reader tips, reviews, & practical encouragement for homeschool families.


Some of Our Sponsors


Landry Academy

Math Mammoth

Great Homeschool Conventions

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine

Resource Links

All About Spelling
Homeschooling ABCs
Upper Level Homeschool
FIRETIME Notebooking
FREE Funschool Units
Homeschooling Help
More Homeschooling Help
HS Gifted and Talented
Homeschool Country Life
Beloved Books & Audio



Courtly Haiku, Reading Comprehension, More for Betty

Added by Heather Idoni

Thursday, December 15, 2011
Vol. 12 No. 44, December 15, 2011, ISSN: 1536-2035
(c) 2011, Heather Idoni - www.FamilyClassroom.net

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:

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



The Perfect Reading Gifts for Christmas for Homeschool Kids Ages 4-9

Tots & Tweens play their way to reading fluency and turn reading into acting.Companion songs and eActivites are freely downloadable for all books. Individual picture books. Birthday party paks. Storybook baby album for baby showers. Holiday Book Club (birthday month...free bonus). Stretch-A-Book Club (a book in the mailbox PLUS eMail from Stretch-e-Robot with links to Stretch-e-Calendar and his daily to do's: readalongs, songs, readers' theater scripts, video demos... Gift stretches for a year. First book FREE.) Readers' Theater eScripts pak...9 for $10. Make sure to visit our YouTube channel.

Whatever you do, don't miss our online bookstore. BUY by Dec 16 in time for Christmas delivery. www.images-press.com


Notes from Heather
-- More Feedback for Betty
Winning Website
-- Supreme Court Haiku
Helpful Tip
-- Reading Comprehension
Reader Question
-- Interactive Math
Additional Notes
-- Newsletter Archives
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

Notes from Heather

Dear friends,

I'm taking off a bit early this year to spend extra time with my family this Christmas season... I'll see you again in January! :-)

May God's grace and PEACE keep you as you enjoy your family time,

-- Heather


More Reader Feedback for Betty

(Betty's question was featured in the 12/8 issue of our Homeschooler's Notebook.)


"We have a 10 year old grandson who has the same problems, only it may take him 1 hour to do 8 - 12 math problems. If it is long division it will take longer. He has a processing disorder also. Flash cards have always been hated. We have looked for the last 3 years to find a way to help him -- and this year it seems we have found some help. The web site is www.RightStartMath.com. They use card games -- 7 decks of cards and the book to go with them tells how to play over 300 games. Here is what they say -- 'Practice is provided with math card games, minimizing review worksheets and stressful flash cards, presenting a variety of repetition, and creating hours of fun learning math facts and concepts.' If you call them they are very helpful. These games were created by Dr. Joan A. Cotter who is an electrical engineer and was a math teacher and a teacher for children with special needs." -- Jo G.


"Betty, we have used the exact programs for learning the multiplication facts for my 11 year old. Nothing stuck. I have since become interested in Charlotte Mason's style of learning/teaching. There is a great company called Queen Homeschool Supply. Out of a 'let's give this one more chance' decision, I purchased their Math Facts Copywork Book for $9.95. It is a simple, basic book, but it has all the addition, subtraction, multiplication and division facts. We just concentrated on the multiplication facts. Your child copies the facts down on a separate piece of paper. You then go over them -- and if they don't have them down pat, the next day they write the same set of facts over and over until they get them. I added my own twist to it by incorporating flashcards for just the facts they have learned. So the child writes the facts, repeats them orally and then also sees them visually when we do the flashcards. At first I have them repeat the facts in order until it is solid in their mind, then I shuffle them around. We have had great success with this method. We have been trying to learn the multiplication facts since 3rd grade and this is the first time we have had success. Maybe it will work for you too!" -- Kris E.


Your feedback is always welcome -- just send your email to heather(at)familyclassroom.net.


Online Curriculum for Kids & Tools for Parents

Hundreds of families have already recommended Time4Learning.com because of its ease of use, quality of lessons and the can-do attitude it promotes toward learning.

Parents love that the online learning program teaches the lessons, grades the activities, tracks the amount of time spent on activities (for attendance) and keeps reports perfect for portfolio usage.

Kids love the "outside-the-box" approach and the novelty of using the computer for school. The multimedia lessons feel more like video games than standards-based curriculum, making it a great tool for presenting new or difficult concepts in a non-threatening way.

Read parent reviews or view the grade by grade curriculum overview to see what’s available.


Winning Website

Supreme Court Haiku

Learn the Bill of Rights and other Constitutional amendments in Haiku form! The blog updates regularly with current cases summarized in Haiku -- historic cases can be found on the site as well. How much fun is that? :-)

The Law of the Land
In Seventeen Syllables
Supreme Court Haiku

Helpful Tips

Advice for Improving Reading Comprehension

The following ideas were shared on our HomeschoolingBOYS.com group...


"For reading comprehension, I find the best way is to follow the Charlotte Mason method on this one: start teaching your child/children to 'narrate' when you read aloud to them.

You will simply start off with reading a sentence and asking them to re-tell you in their own words what it was about (this gets them to process the words and really 'own' the explanation rather than parroting back with no real understanding).

Many, many Charlotte Mason sites will cover this technique, the most straightforward of which might be found here:


If you think it looks too easy, then you've got it -- it really IS easy, and really effective. Sometimes it may take a child a while to 'get it', so some perseverance might be required at first -- my 6-year-old is just now catching on, and my 9-year-old only really understood it this year, after trying for most of last year." -- Kat


"I prefer to use a project-based approach, allowing my kids to complete projects that enhance and showcase their level of comprehension. Many ideas can be found at the links below." -- Kristen





Do you have some thoughts to share on improving reading comprehension? Please send your email to heather(at)familyclassroom.net and we will share YOUR ideas here! :-)

New Reader Question

"Hi! My daughter is 6 and loves Reading Eggs and Looney Toons Phonics for learning to read. I was wondering if anyone knows of a fun, interactive program that is similar for math? Thanks so much!" -- Traci


Would you like to respond with a suggestion for Traci?
Please send your email to: hn-answers@familyclassroom.net

Ask YOUR Question


Do you have a question for our readers? You'll be next in line!! :-)

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

Subscription Information

Here is the page where you can subscribe to our newsletter:


And here is our searchable archive:



There are opportunities for your business to be a sponsor of this newsletter! Read more about our VERY AFFORDABLE advertising here:



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.

Our main website is:


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 reprints in paper publications (homeschool support group newsletters, etc.) please direct your request to: mailto:Heather@FamilyClassroom.net


     Site content copyright individual contributors and FamilyClassroom.net 2001-2011 - Digital duplication expressly prohibited.
Privacy Policy | Advertise