Making Every Moment Teachable
June 13, 2018
Hey Mama,

“It only takes a moment. . . .” Okay, if you're like me you'll start humming along this memorable line from Hello Dolly or WallE, whichever you've seen. Ha!

But there is some truth to these words. Our days are made up of millions of moments, many of them teachable moments for our littles (and even our older kids). Do you spot those moments, Mama? Or are you too obsessed about staying on schedule or stopping the kids from killing each other (again) to use those moments? 

Don't feel bad if you get caught up in the crazy (we all do!). But this day, this moment, will you make the most of it? You may miss a few, but you have so many teaching moments and lasting lessons you can impart because you have them home with you. 

Take heart as you read these teachable moments from experienced homeschoolers at The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine:

And remember, Mama. . .

When you homeschool, you have the gift of time. Time to be a super model. Not the kind the world drools over. I mean the real kind—a model of the Lord your God. A super role model to your children, who are always watching. You're not perfect, and you have been known to have a few meltdowns yourself, but just a little newsbrief here—you're not alone.

The women of the Bible had all sorts of issues going on, too. And some of the men whom God Himself called "friend"-- or had His hand of protection planted firmly on their heads—made some really big blunders. At times, they displayed faithlessness or arrogance maybe. Some got so fearful they were frozen at times, rendered to what they probably thought was useless to the Lord.

But He who sits on the throne had other plans for them. His ways are so much higher; they are unsearchable! Who can know the mind of God? He is merciful and faithful and compassionate and loving. He created His own . . and Mama you are one of them. You love the Lord Jesus with all your heart, soul, and mind—even in all your frailties and disastrous days (you sometimes have them; we all have them). What sets you apart? You may blow it, but you realize it. You turn, you dust yourself off, pick yourself up, and you start over, recognizing all the while Who the One is who has built your faith to begin with. You worship that King of kings. You revere the Holy One, the only true God.

And your children see this. They see the messes and how you “clean them up.”

You are a super model, Mama. You really are. You use those teachable moments to show your children what is important and how to build their relationship with the Lord and with others. And it's the Lord Who has His hand on your head today.

May we be found faithful to the end.

How to Prevent Summer Learning Loss

Is summer learning loss real? Several studies indicate that it is. Here are a few generally accepted facts:

  • On average, students’ achievement scores decline over summer vacation by one month’s worth of school-year learning.
  • Declines are sharper for math than for reading.
  • The extent of loss tends to be larger at higher grade levels.

The good news is we have the perfect antidote for homeschoolers’ summer learning loss—the summer learning gain they get by attending one of SuperCamp’s summer programs. The gain comes through a combination of two key things unique to our camps:

  • The new learning and life skills campers acquire, which propel their learning forward in the fall.
  • The added motivation, confidence and inspiration they return home with, each of which empowers them to take control of their own learning and future.

Students at SuperCamp gain an understanding of how the mind approaches learning. This understanding of the how, and the why behind the how, can have a significant effect on performance. They begin to learn, comprehend and recall information more easily. Studying becomes much easier once a student identifies his or her personal learning style and incorporates techniques unique to that style.

The highly-orchestrated positive environment that our summer campers encounter allows them to grow personally as well as academically. By doing so, this spurs the growth in self-confidence and motivation that ultimately elevates their learning as much as the new learning skills themselves do.

Then there are the specific life skills, which also create a “gain” on the academic side, as well as the personal side of life. Students learn new communication techniques that help with peer and parent relationships. They learn how to collaborate more effectively, enhancing their ability to participate constructively in group undertakings. At the same time, they learn about the traits that make for a good leader; another life skill that is also beneficial later in life.

SuperCamp provides students with clarity on how to set and reach goals and gives them the confidence to do so. They learn that no obstacle is insurmountable as long as there is a commitment to the ultimate goal and an effective step-by-step process to pursuing the goal. 

In summary, while summer learning loss is a reality for most students, parents don’t need to panic. A six-day or ten-day SuperCamp summer program will work wonders. Call SuperCamp at 800-228-5327 or request more information online.
Katie Furlong
In my home I have a toddler, a preschooler, a tween, and a teen. Having a wide variety of ages allows for many teachable moments not just between myself and the children but also between the children. The children learn from each other as much as they learn from me.

One day, my two-and-a-half-year-old daughter was looking at the map of the solar system that I have hanging on the wall. I pointed out Earth and explained that is where we live. She was immediately intrigued and asked about the other planets, stars, and asteroids. For the next few days, she wanted to “talk about her planets” and within a few days she knew them all!

My oldest daughter wants to work with children when she is an adult. She is the kind of person that children are drawn to, and she is a natural with kids. I have always allowed her to be included when I was running my home daycare, plus with her younger siblings. Having an Early Childhood Education diploma and being a trained Montessori Teacher, I enjoy passing on my knowledge to her about child development and teaching. When she goes to college or university, she will have a ton of knowledge and hands-on experience to draw from.

My twelve-year-old son wants to own a restaurant when he is older. Most of our teachable moments happen in the kitchen. He has always been interested in cooking and meal preparation. I have made sure to include him in my cooking and allow him to have control over what we are preparing by encouraging him to create his own recipes for the family.

My youngest son is almost 2 years old. Most of his teachable moments involve me naming objects he points to and developing his language. He loves typical toddler activities like playing in the mud, running, climbing, and exploring our farm. He enjoys feeding my oldest son's chickens and ducks, plus collecting the eggs every day. 

One of the best things about homeschooling children of multiple ages is watching them learn from each other. One day while on a nature walk on our farm, my three-year-old daughter was picking tulips, and I was teaching her about the parts of the flower. Naturally, little brother wanted to be involved and within a few minutes he was also pointing to the parts of the flower along with his big sister! Those are the teachable moments I will remember forever!

Katie Furlong is a busy homeschooling mother of 4 children. She is currently parenting at every stage: toddler, preschooler, tween, and teen. She has an Early Childhood Education diploma, is also a trained Montessori Teacher, and a certified Neurofeedback Practitioner. Katie and her 4 children live on a hobby farm where they keep bees, ducks, chickens, 2 lazy cats, and a big yellow dog. When she is not chasing children, she likes to fix up her 159-year-old farmhouse,  write , and cook to create new allergy friendly recipes. Katie may also have an  essential oil  addiction and need an intervention.
Winner Submissions!

Coen, age 3, from Ontario

George, age 5, from Ontario

Victoria Day

Queen Victoria's birthday is on May 24. Queen Victoria's birthday is a holiday. 
What it means to me
Daddy is off on that holiday. We have chicken on the BBQ. 
Mercy Every Minute  
One of the most important questions you need to ask yourself when you get out of bed is this:
What are we going to do with our time today? 

Most of us have some sort of plan so that we are not wasting time. I have found that in between and all around my plan are those unexpected teachable moments. And, because I have learned that these are the most important moments of my day, I stop the plan, and seize the moment. 

As parents who have been God-ordained for these children, we have the ability, and the unction from God to press into them the very nature of Who God is and the command from God to reveal His glory to them. This often happens in the teachable moments that may or may not be on our plan. 

Don’t let “the plan” of the day rob you or distract you from your highest purpose of revealing God to your children. Those inconvenient moments could be the most eternally rewarding. Children are curious, and therefore open to receiving your counsel and ultimately God’s counsel and purpose for them. 

Just as you prepare yourself and your day for your plan, I would suggest preparing yourself for those teachable moments. When our children are young, they are malleable and full of faith. Take your day and those moments captive and purpose to speak of God in all things. For example. . .

  • When your child comes to you for breakfast, talk to them of The Bread of Life that will fill them so that their soul will never be hungry. 

  • When your child misbehaves, take him to the cross of Christ and talk about the love and forgiveness of God and what that cost looks like. 

  • When you are outside or on a field trip, remind them of the brilliance and creativity of God in the things He created. 
  • Talk about the gift of our minds, our ears, and our eyes as we are able to take in and understand what we see and hear. 

  • When you are helping your child with math, talk about the God of order and understanding. 

  • During language arts, reveal the fact that God is a Writer!

  • When you are sitting on the couch together just cuddling or reading, talk about what you read in your quiet time and reveal your heart for God and God’s heart for them. 

  • Every question they ask, purpose to answer it from a perspective that will lift up the Almighty God and make Him desirable in their eyes. 

  • At bedtime, pray over your child prayers of faith and hope and a future. 

As homeschool parents, you have time on your side. You can fill it with the praises of your God. You can fulfill Deuteronomy 6:4-7 as you walk through your day and teach your children to love God with all their heart, soul, and strength.

Let the important teachable moment overrule the urgent plan. Children don’t wait but grow before our eyes, and our time with them is gone all too soon. What are you planning to teach them today?

See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.” Ephesians 5:15-17


The Summer 2018 issue is at the printers! You can reserve your copy here.
Jodi Riddle
Do you know what is missing in textbooks? The everyday happenings in your home and life! Those things you don’t plan for—life’s unexpected happenings! I call these “teachable moments.” God allows things to happen in our lives, sometimes to get our attention, sometimes to help us grow, but in every circumstance to teach us something. 

Do you take these opportunities in the daily schooling of your children? I hope you do. I have just finished up eighteen years of schooling my children, and what I am finding is that when I reflect back with my boys, the areas where they “learned” the most didn’t necessarily come from what was written in the textbook. Those real-life moments when something happened and we had to stop, look to the Word of God, talk about it, sometimes even agree to deal with it even though we didn’t understand it—those were moments of real teaching and learning. Don’t be afraid to divert from your “schedule” if something comes up that gives you the opportunity to talk to your children about God’s Creation, God’s provision, God’s protection or God’s faithfulness. Use opportunities, circumstances, and situations to teach your children that He is in control and the Creator of all! 

Teaching and learning doesn’t always come from textbooks and academic classes! Don’t miss out on those valuable “teachable moments” that come your way!

Jodi has been with TOS since April 2016. She serves as a Human Resource and Operations Assistant and is also the  Homeschooling with Heart  blog manager. Jodi is a pastor’s wife and has three boys. She has homeschooled for seventeen years and also taught in the private and public-school settings. Jodi enjoys teaching, playing the piano, scrapbooking, and making cards. Her heart’s desire is to help others learn to enjoy these things as well!
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine and curious homeschoolers everywhere want your feedback about your favorite homeschool curricula and products!
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Voice your opinions today!

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“Learning never stops” is a phrase with different meanings. For those of us whose school days are fading in the rearview mirror, it means that when we graduated from one kind of education, we moved into another kind—the education that comes with life and experience. For your students, it might mean that even though summer is here, there’s no reason to stop learning. 

Whatever your summer plans hold, we hope you’ll spend some time in the Summer Learning Center on Whether you are looking for fun summer learning that doesn’t feel like school or you have a high schooler who wants to take some extra courses in preparation for college, we have a library of summer resources for you! There are short, fun courses (like Podcasting to Change the World), summer-themed units (including summer booklists!), and intensive high school courses (including advanced literature, social studies, and Bible courses) designed to help your high schooler build their transcript. 

Do you know the best part? All of our nearly 400 courses on, along with all our summer resources, are available to your family with your membership. If you haven’t yet joined, come give us a try during our June special and lock in a low monthly or yearly rate! If you or someone you know would be interested in teaching or writing for us, let us know. You can email me at We look forward to serving you and your family! 

in the latest issue of
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Contest Corner  
For the month of June

Drawn to Discover is a unique online video drawing program that helps students develop fine motor skills and cognitive skills. This research-based curriculum also promotes language development. Drawn to Discover gives students confidence in their ability to succeed in art, handwriting, math, and so much more. The program provides a way for parents to interact with their children as they work their way through the program. There are multiple courses within the Drawn to Discover program that are available to users. The core of the program features the course, Drawn to Connections, which has Ten Blocks within the course. Each Block has on average ten lessons. The two other courses, Drawing Cursive and Drawn to Peace, are more supplemental courses.

Drawn to Discover has worked great for us, as homeschoolers.
This program is geared for the homeschool setting. For children in the school setting, this would also be a great enrichment program. The intended age for using Drawn to Discover is 4-11 years old. After speaking with the people at Drawn to Discover, I learned that children with autism have had great success with the program.

My 11-year-old daughter has fallen in love with Drawn to Discover! She is working through the Drawn to Connections course. She loves to draw but isn’t all that confident in her ability. She has used many different art curriculums and programs, and this one CLICKED! She cannot get enough of it. She will sit for hours doing lesson after lesson. She has shocked herself by what she has been able to accomplish artistically. Even though some of the concepts along the way are meant for younger students, it is easy to work around. While we are talking about elementary skills, such as the handwriting, let me let you in on a bit of a secret. My daughter is a bit sloppy when it comes to her handwriting. I was a bit giddy when I saw her meticulously copying a handwritten sentence out below her artwork. After hours of working through Drawn to Connections, I began to see an improvement in her handwriting! I have been shocked at the amazing artwork she has completed. She has learned about interesting facts relating to science, too. (. . .)

My 11-year-old daughter said,

Unlike other drawing programs, Drawn to Discover, helps you to draw step-by-step so that you know what your drawing is supposed to look like along the way. If what you are drawing doesn’t look right, you can pause the video, work on the drawing, and then restart the video when you are ready to begin again. My favorite drawing so far was the bee. When I drew the bee, I was amazed at how real it looked! Some of my other favorites have been the flower, goldfish, and dog. Another thing that I like about Drawn to Discover is that each lesson lists all of the things that you will need. I loved that I got to have my very own HUGE box of crayons of my very own. One lesson called for the following crayons: Orange, Dandelion Yellow, Asparagus, and Wisteria. Aren’t those just fun colors!” ( Read the rest of the review.)

YOU can WIN a Drawn to Discover Annual Membership for your homeschool!

TO ENTER: Click on over to our entry page and follow the instructions! Contest ends at midnight, the last day of the month.
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