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Christmas Cookbook, Deep-Sea Exploring, Family Calendar

Added by Heather Idoni

Monday, December 3, 2012
Vol. 13 No. 19, December 3, 2012, ISSN: 1536-2035
(c) 2012, Heather Idoni - www.FamilyClassroom.net

Welcome to The Homeschooler's Notebook!

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Time4Learning Now Offers Gift Certificates!


Give the gift of education this holiday season! In just three steps, anyone can buy, customize and send Time4Learning gift certificates to their loved ones.

Choose from three options:

  • 1 Month - $19.95
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Know somebody who already uses Time4Learning?
Current members can use gift certificates toward their membership.
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Notes from Heather
-- Free Christmas Cookbook
Winning Website
-- The Jason Project
Helpful Tip
-- Organize the Whole Family
Reader Question
-- Scheduling Free Time
Additional Notes
-- Newsletter Archives
-- Sponsorship Information
-- Reprint Information
-- Subscriber Information

Notes from Heather

Free Christmas Cookbook

This month Terri Johnson from Knowledge Quest, Inc. is giving away a cool Christmas Cookbook with recipes from around the world!



Quote to Ponder...

"There is a special moment when a person is figuratively tapped on the shoulder and offered the chance to do a very special thing, unique to him and fitted to his talents; what a tragedy if that moment finds him unprepared or unqualified for the work which would have been his finest hour." -- Winston Churchill


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



Would Your Kids Benefit From Some Extra Writing Help?


Take advantage of teacher led instruction without stepping into a classroom. Time4Writing offers eight week online writing courses ranging from elementary writing mechanics to high school writing for the SAT.

Whether they need writing practice or help developing a skill, Time4Writing courses are designed to help students master the art of writing at all levels.

Time4Writing offers a 14-day money back guarantee. Browse their online writing courses, meet their teachers or take a 2-minute tour to see how it works!

Not sure which course to choose? Try the course placement tool.


Winning Website


The Jason Project is a non-profit organization promoting science education through exploration. They offer an award-winning online and print curriculum as well as live, interactive events. At the Jason website you will find videos, articles with read-to-me functionality, games, hands-on labs and a wealth of lesson plans. One of the main missions of the Jason Project is to highlight scientists who are experts in various areas as guest instructors for visitors to the website and within the print curricula they also offer for sale. The current featured resources focus on deep-sea exploration.

Dr. Robert Ballard, famous for leading the exploration of the Titanic wreckage, is now aboard the ship E/V Nautilus with his crew, which are exploring the Aegean Sea off the coast of Turkey. They have a live cam here:


Want to try out some of the interactive learning? "Commander of the Nautilus" is a fun, hands-on game where you learn to strategically navigate the ocean depths by taking into account direction of currents, wind speed and buoyancy to direct your craft to locations where you can collect data for your underwater mission:


Explore the site and see what you can find! Here is a good link to start with if you are looking for lesson ideas, etc.:

www.jason.org/curricula - (Scroll down to the print curricula and online resources links.)

Helpful Tip

Family Organizational Tools

"I have recently discovered an extremely helpful site that I think would benefit many moms and families. I've tried so many different 'organizing' techniques and finally I've found one that keeps track of pretty much every household task and calendar without needing multiple systems to cover everything or being so complicated that I give up in disgust.

The best part is that it is completely free!! There is a paid upgrade if you want it, but the free account is working great for us.

The site is www.Cozi.com. You sign up your family and 'attach' each family member. Everybody has their own login to your family's account and a shared password.

After you get everybody signed up, the fun begins. I'm still learning all of the features they have but here are some highlights:

- Calendar import from online calendars like gCal and Yahoo or Outlook (you don't have to enter everything in again!!)
- To Do lists (one for each person's daily chores, house repairs, school work, whatever you like!)
- Shopping lists (one for each store, person, however you organize best!)
- Menu planning (includes creating shopping lists from recipes!)
- Family journal

Every task or appointment gets assigned to all family members or individual members. Each person has their own color. The whole family can see the to do lists, calendars, etc. for the other family members, so everybody is on the same page! Whoever empties the last juice box can add 'juice boxes' to the Shopping List right at that moment. Tasks can be checked off as they're completed. You can schedule recurring tasks (such as weekly chores). You can even import the FlyLady calendar for zones and daily to do list. Amazing, right?!?

You can use the site on your computer's browser but they also have apps for iPhone, Android and Blackberry. There is also a desktop gadget for quick reference and access to the website. You can have reminders sent to your phone and/or your email. Forget your shopping list and you're already at the store? Just send a text to Cozi and they'll send your Shopping List to your phone! Including any items a family member may have added while you were out running your errands. You can also have your family's weekly agenda emailed to each family member. You can even set up accounts for groups (homeschool support, co-ops, sports teams) that the members of those groups can access and coordinate with.

This thing is packed full of home management helpfulness! The people behind Cozi are Microsoft and Amazon veterans with families of their own. They're busy. They needed a better way to organize their lives. So...they built it! How homeschoolish of them! :-)

I encourage you to check it out. I'm astounded and thrilled that somebody finally put everything I need into one, easy to access and use system. And did I mention it's FREE? Go. Try. Love."

-- Jodi W. in Iowa
Homegrown Thoughts Blog


Last Issue's Reader Question

"It is so easy to fill our kids' days with the oh-so-important -- if not the oh-so-urgent! How do you 'balance' study time (8 - 9 'subjects') with free time, which is SO important (as mentioned in the previous article by Barbara Frank)?" -- Jane B.


Our Answers...

"Jane -- Eight to nine subjects sounds like a lot -- maybe you need to readjust your goals/expectations? My 2 are older (13 & 15) so each week I plan the schedule for school (Math/English/History/Science/Spanish) and print it out for them. They have the freedom to choose when/what they work on as long as everything is done and any lessons that need my involvement happen before 3 pm. We also limit outside activities to only a few per week unless God brings us an opportunity to serve/meet a need. The rest of their time is pretty much their own to manage. They practice music (piano/guitar), read, play with friends, ride bikes, do chores, etc. Not sure if this is helpful or not... just what works here. Blessings on the journey!" -- Deb W.


New Reader Question

"Hi, all -- Just wondering how others with busy (and noisy) households handle kids who need not only one-on-one but also quiet to successfully get their schoolwork done? Both my children need my attention but can't seem to work in the same room at the same time because one is always too loud for the other 'to think'. We've tried desks in seperate rooms, and even different 'school' hours, but that drags the day out long into the night. I've even tried giving them some subjects they can do on the computer, but with the computer located in the living space even that seems to be too noisy to be useful. Any ideas? Thanks!" -- Liz


Send YOUR Answer!

Do you have an ideas to share with Liz? Please send your answer!

Email: hn-answers(at)familyclassroom.net


Ask YOUR Question

Our 13,000+ readers have a wealth of experience and wisdom. Would you like to have YOUR question featured in an upcoming issue? Please ask it! :-)

Send your email to: hn-questions(at)familyclassroom.net


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