Perseverance or Public School?
July 29, 2020
In This Issue:
Why Homeschool?

Hey Mama,

What does homeschooling mean to you? Are you doing it because it’s a current popular trend and super convenient during this pandemic? Maybe you travel a lot or your kids have special needs. Were your children being bullied in public school, and you thought this would be the solution? So maybe it’s just temporary, or perhaps you were homeschooled yourself, and it’s simply a way of life or all you know. Or . . . is it just a means to an end?

But what if things change? What if you no longer travel or your kids start asking to enroll at the local government school? What if they want to see what classrooms look like, make different friends, and experience a daily couple of rides on that big, long yellow bus? What, then?

Right now you are homeschooling or getting ready to start. The reason why you read this newsletter (and hopefully the print magazine!) is because you want to be prepared and encouraged in your homeschooling journey. But Mama, think hard about the reasons behind the surface-level why of homeschooling.

If you are in Christ, if you love the Lord, then you love His Word. You cherish and follow His instructions. You also recognize that He has a plan for your life and the lives of your children, too. He directs your path, placing your feet firmly and securely on His path because of what He has planned, His will. Simply walk in His love. 

You don’t have to be confused or start second-guessing yourself—not if you are in the Lord, pursuing His plans for you. Every single day you can walk confidently, knowing you have made the right decision to keep your children at home where they can be instructed without distraction and, without ridicule or scoffing.

Need encouragement to persevere in the new school year? That's our specialty at The Old Schoolhouse ® Magazine , and these are a few of my favorite articles.




And remember, Mama. . .

This life is so short! It’s full of trials and testings. May we be found faithful, not double-minded, but with razor-sharp focus while we walk this journey. We disciple our children full-time because we are absolutely directed by God to do so—and not just after school or on weekends, hoping we are making a difference. Homeschooling IS about education, but that part is secondary. You know what is primary? Discipleship. Your influence, Mama.

It’s all day, every day; in the morning, at lunch time, during dinner, and before they go to sleep. Teach them Christ. Model truth. Stand firm in your resolve to obey God’s call to keep them home where they can be nurtured in the Lord, not in the world. Their time to go out into the world as salt and light is not when they are little. That will come later, when they have reached adulthood. Let them grow and learn first. They’re not mature, yet.

This tender season is fleeting. One day you will look back, and I pray you will be filled with joy at the remembrance of it all.

You obeyed the Lord. You followed His Word. You were faithful, Mama.

As for today, His hand is on your head, as always. That will never change.

And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up” (Deuteronomy 6:5-7).

- gena

P.S. If you aren't homeschooling yet but are seriously considering it (or just need some encouragement to persevere, Mama) let me share a complimentary copy of the Considering Homeschooling Bundle w ith you. Inside its pages, you'll find common concerns addressed like the issue of Common Core, a state-sponsored philosophy, a strong anti-God sentiment, and the rapid decline of public education. It’s yours for the asking.
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Per·se·ver·ance, noun, perseverance in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. Current health and social events have caused many families to consider homeschooling, with many wondering if they have to choose perseverance or public schools .

Traditional public schools have historically designed their curriculum and student experience to meet the needs of the “average” student. They group students in relatively large classes of similar age, moving through the same assignments, assessments, and school year progression at a similar pace. This mindset has caused many families, appropriately so, to consider homeschooling or charter schools with a unique mission and model.

Due to the COVID-19 disruption in educational practices, many schools have moved to support the student at the individual level, thereby providing new opportunities for previously disenfranchised parents and students. Schools had to rethink education for fall enrollment to meet the safety, academic, and social emotional needs of students and parents.

Some traditional schools and many charter schools have developed multiple options for parents and students this fall to include the following:
  1. full time in person with CDC compliant guidelines in place.
  2. full time online platform for grades 6-12 plus hundreds of tuition-free college courses.
  3. hybrid learning, which combines in-person and online classes to allow for flexibility and safety precautions.

In the process, many charter schools are able to provide individualized instruction comparable to homeschool curriculum while not infringing on a family’s core beliefs. In addition, with the creation of new school models such as Early College (tuition free associates degree while in high school) and online charter schools, the question of perseverance or public schools becomes more difficult.

The Early College of Arvada (ECA), in Arvada Colorado, is a tuition-free public charter school. We offer online, in-person, or hybrid programs for grades 6-12. Our students’ graduate high school with up to two years of tuition-free college completed concurrently. We partner with the University of Colorado, BYU, Western Colorado University, Front Range Community College, and AIMS Community College. We have an open admission policy and accept students from all backgrounds and levels. ECA is a small school with small class sizes in a family environment.

Call 720-473-4400 or e-mail TCordrey@ECArvada.org today to get started with our placement counselor and learn how your child, as early as the sixth grade , can be on the pathway to earn up to two years of tuition-free college while in high school!
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Focusing on What Really Matters

Homeschooling can be frustrating. Sometimes it seems like you won’t ever meet your goals. Sometimes you feel like a failure. It’s really tempting to think, “Maybe I should just send them to school and let someone else take over. At least that way, I know they’ll be learning.” It’s a rare homeschooling parent that hasn’t wondered that some time or another!

The problem with just sending them to school is that academics is just a small part of what our children need for life. Oh, don’t get us wrong. It’s really important to us that our children get a good education. Regardless, raising six of our eight to adulthood so far has taught us this: what really matters when they’re grown probably isn’t what you are worrying about right now. So, remember this:

You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.

Think back to your own education. If you were anything like us, you probably spent a lot of your school days with your body at a desk but your brain on another planet. If you were anything like us, a lot, maybe even most of them. You know what? That’s okay. You don’t just learn about nouns one year, you cover it every year, even though really once is probably enough if your brain is turned on. 

Your kids would have off days in the public schools, too, and days they didn’t do much of anything except watch movies or go to an assembly. The problem is that they would have reams and reams of busywork, and that might turn them off from learning. That would be disastrous for their future.

The worst homeschool days are actually the most important ones.

Didn’t get any schoolwork done because you were shopping for Grandma who is isolating at home? Your children learned compassion and taking care of the elders in your family. You’ll be happy they did one day!

Couldn't teach because you were stuck in bed all day groaning with pregnancy nausea? Your kids learned that children are a gift worth suffering for. You’ll be glad they did when they give you your grandchildren.

Spent all day long breaking up fights and explaining to the kids how the Bible tells them to behave? You’re helping them develop the character they’ll have as adults one day.

Helping your struggling learner the whole day and wondering if your other children are being neglected school-wise? No, they are learning independence, and they’re learning that we don’t leave anyone behind; everyone gets the help they need.

“And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not,” Galatians 6:9 tells us. Don’t give up the priceless hours homeschooling gives you to build relationships with your children and to disciple them because that is what really matters when they’re grown up, not how many worksheets they did or how neatly. Really!

Enjoy our complimentary download that may help!

Your friends,
Hal & Melanie
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Lee Binz, The HomeScholar
Called for a Reason

Fear of homeschooling can take root over summer. You may be tempted into alt-ed programs, accredited agencies with certified teachers, or public schools. The truth is, for overwhelmed homeschool parents, even the French Foreign Legion might sound appealing at certain times in the year. Until you remember. . .

You were called for a reason.
 
You were likely nervous to start, but you did because you wanted to provide a better education that respected your values and met the needs of your student. You wanted your child to thrive educationally, socially, spiritually, and physically. You wanted to avoid bullying, school shootings, violence, corrupt influences, and the needless, destructive trauma your child might face. Those reasons have not changed. The only thing that has changed is fear. You already have kids and curriculum—now you just need to find the faith to homeschool. Address your fear, and you will feel more confident to persevere. My book Finding the Faith to Homeschool High School can help.

Fear is unfounded. 

Homeschooling is an extremely efficient form of education. With parents acting as teacher, principal, superintendent, and school board, we hold the power to meet the needs of our student. We can change curriculum instantly, match teaching styles to learning styles, and adapt expectations to abilities. With such a wonderful student-teacher ratio, we can rely less on ineffective tests for our assessments and actually watch the learning take place.

Homeschooling is education within a safe and secure environment where children learn best. If you feel anxious, take my complimentary class The 12 Keys to High School Success and learn how to homeschool middle school and high school.

Homeschooling is soaring.

Homeschoolers statistically score higher on standardized tests, regardless of the degree of education the parent has. No matter how controlling your state laws, homeschooling is still an extremely effective form of education. There are no other schools where a teacher will be sure the student has learned before moving on, where absences don’t stymie learning. We can adjust our expectations to keep education challenging, so the student will learn. At the same time, we can prevent education from becoming overwhelming, ensuring success and a quality education. 

Public schools are floundering. 

The entire country is seeing firsthand the limitations of public education. The pandemic has forced education online, supervised by the parent. Immediately, the public has recognized the false promises of all-online schooling. Teachers were unable to engage students for an entire day, and few completed their curriculum. Many parents saw for the first time, the questionable quality of educational textbooks and materials and are starting to doubt the choices of their school board. Plus, the inefficiency of online education hurts the student’s ability to learn and stay engaged. Children can’t be expected to work 6-8 hours a day like an adult.

Homeschooling works.

In contrast, homeschooling is efficient and effective. It’s portable and can move with you to any location. It’s inexpensive, recession-proof, and built to stay that way. Homeschooling is the perfect education during a pandemic. It allows for social distancing in the classroom, while also maintaining socialization with significant others. It can continue uninterrupted as the world goes crazy around you. 

It allows students to learn about history as they are living in a historical time. Each year brings challenges that can be easily met by a loving parent at home. Take a moment to invest in yourself. Learn how to be a better home educator with this complimentary e-book How to Be a Better Home Educator . Keep calm, and homeschool on!

Lee Binz, The HomeScholar, is a speaker and author of more than 30 books about homeschooling high school. An expert on homeschool transcripts and getting scholarships, Lee’s mission is to encourage and equip parents to homeschool through high school. Grab some of the  complimentary homeschool resources  from Lee and connect with her on  Facebook  and  Instagram .
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Edna Latone
Reasons to Persevere on the Homeschooling Journey

As we globally come out of isolation, many families are making the decision to either continue to homeschool or send their children back to public school. As I support families through online groups and one-on-one online sessions through my work at homeschoolhelp.ca a few different challenges keep coming up. 

Many times these are considered “reasons” to send children to school outside the home. I often challenge families who seem torn in their decision, to persevere with prayer, creativity, research, and by building a support team. 

These are some of the challenges often brought forward:

What am I going to do with the baby? Often the baby IS the lesson. How exciting it is to see children who know how to nurture babies and support their parents. This is a great time to enlist support, find a more independent plan of study, and read together perhaps more than usual.

What about my child’s special needs? Excellent curricula exist for those with special learning needs and sometimes outside support is needed, but I encourage parents that with creativity and their child’s specific areas of excellence in mind, a specialized and nurturing education will happen at home. I have also seen creative blends where outside education models and home worked together.

What about tragedy? Sometimes life hands us situations that knock us down. Health issues, deaths in our families, or even long-term, chronic-care needs of family members. There is a lesson in all of this. Learning about caring for others, grieving well, loving well through pain and challenges are huge life lessons that often hit us as adults. How wonderful for our children to learn first-hand how to manage these things. Sometimes these situations require academic work to be minimal or paused, but taking care of the emotional and mental well-being of our families always brings balance.

As an example, this past year my husband required brain surgery. That year, Daddy was the lesson and our son knows more than any 14 year old about the endocrine system and the brain. He learned about the importance of research, persistence, and spending time with those we love. We did school in waiting rooms and via text messages. 

I am thankful for the homeschool years that have knit our family together and shaped us into an almost entirely adult team of nurturing, caring adults who advocate well for others and have the skills to care well for themselves. I encourage you to gather your resources and your team and persevere on your homeschool journey. You can do it!

Edna Latone has been homeschooling near Peterborough, Ontario, Canada, for over 20 years. Her mission is to connect other homeschoolers with the people and the information that they need to homeschool in a way that resonates for their family. For over 10 years, she has also worked in libraries as a Public Library CEO and now in an academic library as Assistant to the Director of Learning Resources at Master's College and Seminary. Her passion is to support homeschoolers to craft their own path through her work at homeschoolhelp.ca . She has taken her "Homeschool Friendly Certification" to libraries and businesses throughout Ontario to train others to offer programs and services that meet the unique needs of homeschoolers. Together with their youngest son Gideon, John and Edna can be found enjoying the outdoors while walking their dog Daisy or hosting a bonfire for their family.
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Miss heading to the convention this year? Wish you could still have the freebies, samples, and resources? Let the convention come to you with our Virtual Convention Resource Guide in the Summer 2020 issue of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine .
Now is your time to shine! Parents all over the world are considering homeschooling and we are asking YOU to share your experience with them—this is YOUR chance to be a light in a dark hour!
Why did you begin homeschooling? How did your children feel about it in the beginning? What have you learned over the years?
Whether your children have already graduated or they are learning their ABCs, if you have homeschooled your children, we want to hear your story. Simply share an encouraging video about your homeschooling experience with The Old Schoolhouse® to inspire families considering home education. All approved entrants will receive a $20 Amazon gift card or $25 gift card to the Schoolhouse Store (winner’s choice and not applicable on magazine subscriptions)! Judges will also choose ONE winning video each month through the end of 2020! Each winner will receive a Best of Video Award and a $150 Amazon gift card or cash (winner’s choice) and will be featured in The Homeschool Minute.
RULES: 
  1. Create a video about your homeschooling experience being mindful of background noise and the setting.
  2. Maximum length: seven minutes.
  3. REQUIRED: Begin the video by using the most appropriate statement:
  • Hello, I'm a homeschool Mom. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I'm a homeschool Dad. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I'm a homeschool Graduate. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I'm a homeschool Grandparent. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I’m a former homeschool (fill in the blank Mom, Dad, etc.) and have graduated (#) children. Let me tell you my story. 
  • Hello, I'm a homeschool SchoolhouseTeachers.com Lesson Designer. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I’m a homeschool Ambassador for TOS. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I’m a homeschool Mom and TOS staff member. Let me tell you my story.
  • Hello, I’m a homeschool Dad and TOS staff member. Let me tell you my story. 
 
4. Include three or more of the following talking points in your video:
  • Why I began homeschooling
  • What my kids thought about homeschooling at first
  • What has helped me along the way
  • How my kids have grown through homeschooling
  • Here is a success story
  • This is why I didn't give up
  • How I teach/taught multiple ages
  • How I deal with or dealt with socialization
  • Teaching is easier than I thought! Here's why
  • What I have learned in my homeschooling experience
  • Why I believe my family is tighter because of homeschooling
  • How I’ve seen the love of Christ manifested in our homeschool
5. Please do not include the following in your submitted video: 
  • Why you gave up homeschooling
  • Why you put your kids back into public/private school
  • Political rants
  • Bashing any curriculum
  • Profanity, complaining, murmuring of any kind
  • Copyrighted music in the background (feel free to include your child’s original music)
6. Email your name, email address, video title, short video description, and video link to jriddle@theoldschoolhouse.com . Include 2020 CONTEST SUBMISSION in the subject line. Please do NOT send the actual video but only the link to the video. Simply upload the video to Dropbox or WeTransfer (both have free options). By submitting your content you are giving TOS ownership of the video and the permission to use your video for promotional purposes. Changes may be made to the titles and descriptions to meet our SEO criteria. Winners will be chosen and contacted by email after the judges have reviewed the videos received during the submission period.

Head over to  www.TOSmagazine.com  to subscribe to the premier homeschool magazine,  The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine US $29/yr, Canada/Int. $59/yr . Fall issue coming soon!
Your opinion matters! Cast your votes for the best in homeschool curricula and resources by August 15, 2020. The Old Schoolhouse® Excellence in Education Awards will be revealed in the Winter 2020-21 issue of The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine . Receive a $100 gift certificate to our Schoolhouse Store for any digital purchase and be entered in a drawing for a Kindle Fire Tablet — just for completing the survey! ( not applicable to SchoolhouseTeachers.com memberships)
SchoolhouseTeachers.com is the lifeline ready to save you from frustrating teaching methods that keep pulling you away from success! Use promo code: SHARK to take advantage of the BOGO discounted rate of $179 for two full years and receive your free tote and PRINT back issue! (Tote color and magazine issue will vary; membership renews at $179/yr after the second year. New members only. No refunds.)
Are you looking for more weekly encouragement and ideas? We have a team of homeschool moms who share their heart on a wide variety of topics. Some write about fun ideas of things to do, food to make, and places to go. Others tell of obstacles, struggles, milestones, and everyday life while going through this homeschooling journey. By receiving our weekly e-mail, you will not miss out on any of the great articles that are shared on our blog.  Head over  to receive your first e-mail on Saturday.
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Share this newsletter with a friend, and be sure to let those 
CONSIDERING  homeschooling know about the enormous  FREE  info-pack which awaits them here:  www.TryHomeschooling.com .
Did you know?
Every class is INCLUDED for ultimate members! 
No limits.
At SchoolhouseTeachers.com , we know sometimes homeschooling gets challenging. We want to help you push through and offer some encouragement. It’s okay. We’ve got you and we’re here for you. Check out our parenting courses, Help Me Stay the Course and Homeschooling Through the Rough Spots . This, too, shall pass, dear friend!
in the summer issue of
The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine.
Look What’s Happening!

Special Needs Solutions for Homeschool Families . Hosted by the Christian Home Educators Association of California (CHEA of CA), this ONLINE EVENT will be held on Thursday, August 13. Contact cheainfo@cheaofca.org for more information.
Congratulations to Ashley Cox from Ohio who won our May giveaway!
Contest Corner
for the month of July

Summer Ruins - The Field Notes of Gwen Bell, #1

Deb Watley Books

We love books and have recently found a new one to add to our growing library! Summer Ruins (The Field Notes of Gwen Bell #1) written by Deb Watley is a 208-page paperback sure to delight your middle school readers. Full of humor and adventure, this fictional book is a great read-aloud or one just for your child’s quiet time.

Summer Ruins is about a young twelve-year-old girl named Gwen and her summer adventures. Though she had plans of friends and parties and free time, a last-minute change instead puts her in the middle of an archaeological dig in South Dakota. Joining her parents for the summer, Gwen finds herself in charge of two rambunctious boys. While she tries to find ways to keep them entertained, as well as safe, she dreams of what her summer could have looked like. . . 

Here is what I love about this book. Gwen is a typical tween that thinks her plans are the best and come first. Throughout the book, she is challenged to grow up a bit and put others first. . . Paired with sweet black and white illustrations along with Gwen’s “field notes” at the beginning of each chapter, this book will make you smile. It will also teach you a few fun facts about archeology and South Dakota history along the way! As a homeschooling family, I appreciate the true facts that Mrs.Watley has woven into the story and her obvious love for history. . . 

This is a shortened review of the book Summer Ruins - The Field Notes of Gwen Bell, #1 . Read the complete review on our site and get more details about this wonderful summer read.

You’ll also want to go to the contest page of our site where you can ENTER TO WIN this children’s fiction book.
The Summer issue of  The Old Schoolhouse Magazine
is now available for FREE online!
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