Holiday Series: 6 Christmas Stress Mistakes to Avoid

Special Holiday Series Replays while Melanie is on Christmas Break:  Are you already beginning to experience stress this season? The busyness can get to us. But we can make things better by avoiding the six mistakes I’ll discuss in this episode.

[box] Want to read this episode as a blog post? READ HERE or SUBSCRIBE ON ITUNES or ON STITCHER[/box]

Christmas Stress Mistakes You Don't Want to Make: Podcast

Mistake #1: Not Planning A Homeschool Break

What we typically do is get busy with other things this time of year. There is more shopping and cooking and even chatting going on. After all, it’s Christmas! Somehow in the midst of all the extra activity, we end up not doing school. But it isn’t a planned break. We just sleep in, do some Christmas shopping, or watch Christmas movies instead of homeschooling. We aren’t doing a Christmas unit study. That’s different. We find ourselves falling into a Christmas break. The result is we feel guilty. We really wanted to get a lot done before Christmas. But we didn’t. And we don’t feel refreshed like we should from a planned break. Instead of falling into a Christmas break this year, decide whether you really are going to do a Christmas unit study. Plan what to do. If you don’t have time to plan, try the Christmas Traditions or Christmas Around the World online unit studies from Techie Homeschool Mom. They’re done for you.

If you don’t want to do a Christmas unit study, plan when you are going to take a break and for how long. If you feel behind on your regular studies, decide what you want to accomplish before Christmas. Make a realistic list for yourself and your children. Give your children the option of finishing early if they finish their work early or you finish your family work early. This is the process I used to create the most motivating homeschool planner ever. Continue reading here.

Links

Homeschool Sanity Facebook Page

try the Christmas Traditions or Christmas Around the World online unit studies from Techie Homeschool Mom

the most motivating homeschool planner ever

6 Short Workouts You Can Do at Home

The Organized Homeschool Life

Have a happy homeschool week!

Best of HIRL Holiday Series: Stocking Stuffer

downloadAre you stuck in holiday traffic? Are you locking yourself in the bathroom at your family get-together to avoid Crazy Uncle Larry? Are you sick of hearing Christmas music? This quick episode is just for you!

Merry Christmas HIRLers! Join Fletch and Kendra on this short and fun episode as we share some Christmas laughs with you. You might find out a few things that you didn’t know about Fletch and Kendra. (No, she really doesn’t like Italian Christmas music!)

Find out more facts as we play a quick round of “Q and A with K and A.” Then see if you agree as we comment on your answers to our Facebook questions like “What Christmas song drives you nuts?” We each have goodies to lock into the HIRLer’s Treasure Chest and then join us as we finish the podcast with a Christmas edition of “Would you rather…”

This episode is meant to be light hearted, but it also gives you a chance to take a private peek at your two hosts. Join us as we celebrate Christmas week on this episode of Homeschooling In Real Life.

 


SHOW NOTES:

Recommended Resources:
Hope Shifting – by Jim Applegate

Previous Episodes Mentioned:
Why the Rise In African-American Homeschooling – Episode 54

Music clips used on this episode:
Wonderful Christmas Time- Paul McCartney – Go buy it on iTunes
Last Christmas – Wham! – Go buy it on iTunes
Blue Christmas – Elvis Presley – Go buy it on iTunes

Baby It’s Cold Outside – Dean Martin – Go buy it on iTunes
12 Days of Christmas – Bing Crosby – Go buy it on iTunes
All I Want For Christmas Is You – Mariah Carey – Go buy it on iTunes
Christmas Song – Chipmunks – Go buy it on iTunes
Carole of the Bells – John Williams – Go buy it on iTunes
Grandma Got Runover By A Reindeer – Elmo and Patsy – Go buy it on iTunes
Christmas Shoes – Newsong – Go buy it on iTunes
Santa Claus Is Coming To Town – Bruce Springsteen – Go buy it on iTunes
Dominic the Donkey – Lou Monte – Go buy it on iTunes

 


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor, Kiwi Crate!

 

We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor, Kiwi Crate!

KiwiCo has monthly subscriptions of hands-on projects that make learning fun! Their core offering is projects that make learning about STEAM — science, technology, engineering, art, and math — accessible and are designed to spark creativity, tinkering, and learning. Some recent favorite crates are the Slime Lab, Physics Carnival, and Paper Circuits.

Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network is excited to be able to offer you the chance to try them for FREE. To learn more about their projects for kids ages 2 to 16 AND to redeem this exclusive offer, click here to get your first month free today (just pay $4.95 for shipping)


LISTEN HERE

Are you ready to listen to Fletch and Kendra get real about homeschooling? Press the PLAY button below.

Best of HIRL Holiday Series: What To Do About Sibling Relationships?

Free homeschool podcast discussing sibling rivalry.We received a message on the HomeschoolingIRL Facebook page that said, “Please, please, please do an episode on siblings fighting. Thanks!”

Sibling relationships. Sibling rivalries. Siblings fighting. We put out the question to our listeners and they responded with story after story of siblings who know how to tease, fight and use sarcasm like professionals.

On this episode, we dig into the topic of parenting through sibling relationships in your homeschool. Fletch and Kendra open up about their own family and share practical advice for handling those tricky, sticky moments when brothers and sisters want to be anything but best friends. We also announce our coffee contest winner and we each answer the question: “What Ben/Jerry’s ice cream flavor would you create and what would you call it?”

 

Music clips used on this show:

“George Street Shuffle” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/

Three Little Birds, Ziggy Marley (Click on link to purchase)

Pick A Little/Talk A Little, The Music Man (Click on link to purchase)

 


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor, Kiwi Crate!

 

We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor, Kiwi Crate!

KiwiCo has monthly subscriptions of hands-on projects that make learning fun! Their core offering is projects that make learning about STEAM — science, technology, engineering, art, and math — accessible and are designed to spark creativity, tinkering, and learning. Some recent favorite crates are the Slime Lab, Physics Carnival, and Paper Circuits.

Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network is excited to be able to offer you the chance to try them for FREE. To learn more about their projects for kids ages 2 to 16 AND to redeem this exclusive offer, click here to get your first month free today (just pay $4.95 for shipping)


I Love Homeschooling But I’m Totally Burned Out

For the rest of the year, we will be running a “Best of” series of the Homeschooling IRL episodes. Many of these episodes were earlier episodes that you might have missed. Enjoy!


Homeschool BurnoutLet’s be real folks! It’s February and the mid-year homeschooling doldrums can hit any of us. One of our listeners sent us a great email with five questions all about homeschool challenges and wanting to throw in the towel.

As we read through the questions he asked, we decided to combine all of them into one podcast and return  to a popular theme and call this episode, I Love Homeschooling But I’m Totally Burned Out. Don’t be confused. You may think this is an episode for just the homeschool moms, but moms and dads alike are going to relate to the questions and discussions.

As we answered his questions, we also turned our microphones onto other loyal listeners and asked three seasoned homeschool moms how they survive homeschool burnout in their home. These moms did not disappoint! Their answers were terrific and timely as we all approach midyear burnout in our homeschool  classrooms.

Episode Timeline
2:12 – Introduction – The Fluff!
10:30 – Question 1 – Have you ever wanted to throw in the towel and put the kids in public school?
18:33 – Question 2 – Has mom ever been burned out?
24:35 – Question 3 – Has there ever been a disagreement about the direction of your homeschool between mom and dad?
33:28 – Question 4 – What do you do with lazy kids?
37:33 – Question 5 – Has dad ever needed to step in and stop the direction of the family? Academically Socially?

Show Notes:

Guests: Michele White, Kari Clark, and Cheryl Pitt

Intro clip: Wipeout by the Surfaris – We encourage you to purchase this directly from iTunes
—————————————————————-


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor!


We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor Sony and their new movie, The Star, the Story of the First Christmas – Coming in Theaters November 17th!

Visit TheStarMovie.com to learn more.


Questions You’ve Always Wanted to Ask a Veteran Homeschool Mom

Questions You’ve Always Wanted to Ask a Veteran Homeschool Mom

Do you have questions you’ve always wanted to ask a veteran homeschool mom?

I’ve been homeschooling and homeschool mentoring long enough I think I’ve heard every question that can be asked. Maybe.

Here’s some I’ve gleaned from around social media along with my opinion answers.

Q: What is the best form of homeschooling?

A: Whatever brings your children home. Seriously. For Christians, providing a Christian education for our children isn’t an option or even a calling. It’s a mandate given by God throughout Scripture. That being said, you want a method of education that does several things. One thing would be to uphold the authority of Scripture. Another would be to allow you to disciple your kids. If you get these two things done, you’ve done a lot. I personally used the Principle Approach method.

Q: How did you trust that in the end your child would be smarter, better off, and not held back?

A: It was really a journey. So much was riding on the oldest doing well. I mean, everyone was watching and waiting for me to mess up or throw in the towel. I had to place faith in the fact that I was doing what the Lord wanted me to do (conviction), and that my method supported that. After that, what good is comparing? Each child’s an individual anyway and God had a plan and purpose for each of them- regardless.

Q: How do you balance housework, meals, laundry…etc, when your kids are young and need more direct instruction and attention?

A: Honestly? Sometimes, barely. Things like a laundromat, crockpot, and tidying as we went along helped. But, we had a lot of cereal for dinner (my husband worked nights), and held sock-mating parties for fun. You do the best you can do. Ask for help if it’s available. I promise it passes.

Q: How did you handle the high school years to make sure they would be accepted into a college?

A: By keeping on track in middle school. We looked at what they thought they wanted to do and what college they wanted to attend (if they wanted to attend college) and had a gap year to focus on any academic weak areas.

Q: What would you do differently if you had to do it all over again?

A: If do-overs were a real thing, I’d not listen to what other people thought so much and focus on a strong understanding of the application of Scriptural principles. I’d have tackled more philosophy. Mainly, I’d have spent less time on things that distracted me. And I didn’t have social media to intrude! I’d pointed them to Jesus a lot more!

Q: How do you stay motivated?

A: One day at a time. Write out your philosophy of education, you’re “why” you homeschool. Remind yourself of the blessings.

Q: How do you know if you are doing too much or not enough? In kindergarten when they are starting to learn the foundation of everything how do you know you are teaching enough?

A: The best meter I’ve found for knowing this is by monitoring the stress level in the home. I had one child that hid from me when I brought out the phonograms. Turns out she had a vision issue. If I’d have insisted on her doing them, we may have harmed her love of learning.

Also, gaining consent from the child to be taught. If you have this (through relationship building), you’ll be able to accomplish a lot more schooling. This will also cover the motivation of the child.

Q: How do you shut up your negative thoughts, mommy guilt during these rough high school years?

A: Give yourself grace. Pray. Ask forgiveness when necessary. Don’t give up. God is a parent and look at Adam. It’ll be okay.

Q: How do you plan your homeschool?

A: Pinterest. Just kidding. Kinda. Seriously, though- plan with the end in mind. Think big picture to particulars. Whole to part. There are a bazillion planners for just getting the what you do on what day down. Beyond that- I always journaled my planning.

Q: What about socialization?

A: Fooled ya! You know I’m not going to answer that one!

I hope this has proven helpful to you. If you have a question I’ve not answered, drop me a comment and I’ll try to help!

_____________

Gina Glenn is a veteran homeschool mom to four {nearly all} grown children and author of the Principle Approach Primer. You can find Gina at GinaGlenn.com

Creating Inviting Spaces with Your Little Ones

When my sweet friend, Misty sent me a Marco Polo (a cool video app) asking my opinion on her child’s playroom, I thought it would be a good idea to share my thoughts with all of you on creating inviting spaces for your little ones!

Everyone is worthy of feeling as if they belong, especially our children and most definitely in their own home. Before you begin designing an inviting space for your children, I suggest you get on your hands and knees and crawl around your home. YEP, literally get on your hands and knees. Spaces look so different from a child’s eye level. Ask yourself, how do things look and feel from that level. Are there enough “small” areas for your children to work, play, discover and explore?

  1. Work – Children need small ways to contribute to the family. They need work. Create spaces for their belongings on their level. Have a drawer for their cups, plates, utensils, and special cooking items. Have a bucket with basic cleaning supplies and cloths. Place hooks low enough so that children can hang up their own coats. Creating good habits at a young age pay off.
  2. Play – Children are meant to play. How easy is it to say YES to their ideas for play? Less is definitely more in this area. Children do not need 20 containers full of toys in a playroom. During the early years it is likely that everything that is in a container will end up dumped on the floor, all at once. Buy quality toys and items that inspire open-ended play. This is more engaging for the child. I suggest you keep it basic. Some quality blocks, some arts and crafts materials, something that inspires pretend play (dress up, kitchen, baby dolls, etc..) and a cozy corner with books. Put everything else in a large plastic bin and keep it for a month. During that month, move anything your child asks for into a different bin. Whatever is left in the original bin after a month, donate.

3.  Discover and Explore- Kids need permission to get outside in search of discovery and exploration. Do you have a space for them to do that? Do you have materials such as nature journals, pencils, binoculars, and bird/flower books to inspire them? Keeping these type of items handy will help you say yes!

Creating inviting spaces is worth the time and effort! Get down on your hands and knees and start crawling around your space today!

 


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor!


We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor Sony and their new movie, The Star, the Story of the First Christmas – Coming in Theaters November 17th!

Visit TheStarMovie.com to learn more.


 

 

When Momma’s Sick VoA 4

Momma’s you are normally the main caregiver, homemaker, homeschooling educator in a home of littles. What happens though when you the go-to gal gets sick? What if its serious like hospital sick or long term sick? I have a lot of experience with being a sick momma of many and still making sure our home runs smoothly.

Lets talk today about how to make some changes to your life to help you overcome these difficulties. Also lets take some time consider what to do to prepare for a time such as this. How can you adjust your day to day living to be able to handle a sudden illness.

Caring for Littles including making sure everyone including daddy gets a share of your love and attention.

Homemaking how to keep the home clean and running. Real world things like cooking and budgeting for prolonged illness.

Homeschooling should you change your curriculum because you are chronically ill?

and more…

Also a blessed return from my own illness to podcasting and a warm thank you for your prayers and support.

Subscribe: Please subscribe to my podcast feed at iTunes and each of the shows will pop up on your listening device as soon as it is released.

Social Media: I’m a talker so you can find me online in several places. Follow Special Needs Homeschooling on Facebook and Pinterest, and find my blog and more resources at  Special Needs Homeschooling blog.


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor!


We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor Sony and their new movie, The Star, the Story of the First Christmas – Coming in Theaters November 17th!

Visit TheStarMovie.com to learn more.


Smart Kids Who Struggle – MBFLP 184

Sometimes you have a student who struggles – but just in one area! How do you understand and help a student who’s “twice exceptional” – who’s both gifted and special needs at the same time?

Resources We Recommend

We have several resources on our website – CLICK HERE to check them out!

Home School Foundation

Special Needs Homeschooling

Homeschooling When Learning Isn’t Easy by Heather Laurie

 

Best of Homeschooling IRL: What Josh Duggar Forgot

Free homeschool podcast about homeschool leaders who fall and fail to remember the gospel.For the next few weeks, we’re playing a few episodes of Our discussion on this episode comes right out of the current headlines. Homeschool graduate and reality TV star, Josh Duggar, has fallen from the spotlight due to his confessions of struggling with adultery, pornography and a history of molestation.

We jump into to discuss the frequent failures we have seen by men in the homeschooling movement. We talk openly on this episode about what happens when we forget the one thing that tethers us to the truth. If you’ve been following the Josh Duggar story, this is a conversation you won’t want to miss. Join us for an open and honest discussion about living as loved in the light of the gospel.

Timeline
2:34 – Introduction
12:50 – Part One –  Just the Facts!
24:51 – Part Two – We Want A King!
28:40 – Part Three – No Safe Environment!

35:27 – Part Four – Success Stories
47:00 – What Did Josh Duggar Forget?

Show Notes


Special Thanks to our Network Sponsor!

We’d like to thank our Ultimate Homeschool Radio Network sponsor Raddish – a cooking club and curriculum, specially designed FOR KIDS by chefs and educators! Raddish is perfect for homeschooling families! Teach thematic cooking lessons that incorporate math, science, nutrition, geography, and culture. With Raddish, the kitchen is the tastiest place to learn! Use coupon code PODCAST at checkout for $15 off a 6 or 12 month membership. Visit RaddishKids.com/Homeschool to learn more and to download a free lesson. 
Check out this info pack: Raddish One Page

What If I Think My Child Needs a Diagnosis?

What if I think My Child Needs a Diagnosis?I have the coolest friends. Sometimes I forget that they are even more amazing in their careers. This is the case with my friend, Lei Rhyne. Not only did she homeschool her kiddos fro several years, is beautiful and funny, she is also a psychometrist… say that three times fast. When she mentioned to me that she helped families who saw their children struggling, I wanted to know more.

Lei Rhyne, psychometrist - What if I think my child needs a diagnosis?

In this episode Lei shares the full process involved of having your child tested and diagnosed, putting your fears to rest. She explains the first meeting with the Psychologist, the fact-finding mission that usually involves a couple of days of testing and observations and the results meeting with both the Psychometrist and Psychologist.

Lei Rhyne

I think one of the best parts about getting a diagnosis from Lei her team at Fresh Start Mind is the fact that in the end, parents will be armed with the information and tools needed to help their child succeed emotionally, socially, and academically.

If suspected that something is not quite right with your child socially, emotionally or academically, you should consider giving Lei or another qualified educational consulting team a call.

You’ve got this!


Find a way to #sayyes today.

Don’t forget to subscribe to my podcast and leave a review on iTunes!!!

Thank you to The Homegrown Preschooler for sponsoring this Podcast! Check out the blog post Kathy mentioned, Farmhouse Schoolhouse, to read more about A Year of Playing Skillfully.

Also, to thank you for listening, you can receive a 10% discount on any purchase at

The Homegrown Preschooler by using the code, THEREALKATHYLEE.

 

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