Special Replay: Babysitting

Homeschooling IRL Podcast - BabysittingSome of our best episodes have been created as the result of our listeners’ great ideas, and this is one of those episodes! We’re talking all about leaving younger siblings with older siblings in the role of babysitter: the ins and outs, the expectations, and other various aspects of that realty.

We hope it sets the stage for good discussion with your own kids and allows you to successfully encourage your own in-house babysitters.


SHOW NOTES:

Recommended Resources:

None

Get Social With Us:

Follow Fletch/Kendra:
Fletch Twitter
Kendra Twitter

Follow the Studio Dogs:
Betty the Surf Dog – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website
Rasta The Chocolate Lab – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website

Previous Episodes Mentioned:
None

Music clips used on this episode:
None

 


LISTEN HERE

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

 


A Special Thank You to Our Network Sponsor:  Show Me The Father Movie

The Kendrick Brothers, creators of WAR ROOM and FIREPROOF, have some exciting news to share: they have TWO films coming to theaters this fall—SHOW ME THE FATHER on September 10 and COURAGEOUS Legacy on September 24.

Featuring a variety of amazing, true stories, the Kendrick Brothers’ new feature film SHOW ME THE FATHER takes audiences on an inspiring and emotional cinematic journey. Their first documentary film has something for everyone and invites you to think differently about how you view your earthly father story and also how you personally relate to God.

Check out the trailer here!


 

Get More Done

Get more done in a schedule that is already packed? Are you kidding me? Well, friends - this is the goal and in this podcast, I will explain how you can do more in less time. (Sorry I can't grant you more time, but I can help you with the time that you have.) Please join me and bring a friend!

Get More Done – Episode 446

Get more done in a schedule that is already packed? Are you kidding me? Well, friends – this is the goal and in this podcast, I will explain how you can do more in less time. (Sorry I can’t grant you more time, but I can help you with the time that you have.) Please join me and bring a friend!

Thanks to our sponsors! The movie – Show Me The Father

Tear jerk alert! This is a snapshot of ordinary and extraordinary people and the effect that parents have on their children.  I teared up just watching the trailer and you will too! The links to the movie trailer are on the show notes page – you can find more information about local airing on the website as well as streaming in the near future. This is not to be missed.

Okay friends here we go, it’s time to get more done without stressing ourselves out and it begins with a pep-talk and motivation. Think back to a time when you really wanted something and had a goal. Do you have that picture in your mind? Was it…

  1. To lose weight?
  2. Get a new job?
  3. Get married and have kids?

Well, if you are listening to Vintage Homeschool Moms my guess is that you achieved goal number three anyway! You are married with kids and wondering, “What happened to all of my time.” and “Thank you Lord for my blessings.” All kidding aside what needs to get done? We can probably put this in a series of five things with a ton of subcategories.

What are the things you need to get done? Listing them here – we will go over these later.

  1. Faith and Relationships.
  2. Household.
  3. Kids.
  4. Teaching.
  5. Errands
  6. BONUS – YOU – taking care of you.

How are you going to get more done when you really sub-categorize this list you will be exhausted and need a nap! Well, we will tackle that in a bit, but first … the test. Yes, there is a short series of questions you need to answer and I promise this will help you with productivity!

You need at least thirty minutes to an hour to do this activity but I’m going to lay it all out for you in way less time. I’m giving you information that has super helped me and it has increased my productivity to way beyond what I thought I could do.

So where we go – and you have to really answer these questions honestly for this to work!

  1. What are the distractors in your life?
  2. Are you motivated to get more done? Why or why not.
  3. What is holding you back from accomplishing more?
  4. Are your goals unrealistic?
  5. Do you have help or can you enlist (trade) help with others?

So, spend some time really answering these questions, and then the ideal would be to come back to this audio. So, you have looked over these questions and given them some serious thought, and I want to break them down quickly for you.

What are the distractors in your life? 

Problem: Kids, health, a messy home, too much to do without a plan, relatives, neighbors, spouse…

Solution: By identifying the problem you can figure out a solution. Some days all we are meant to do is thread water. Other days we can be super productive and it counts for two days. Look at the distractions and take care of them – from the most important to the least. Don’t look at the entire room that is a mess, tackle one thing… for me it is the things on the floor, I can’t handle that…or opened cupboards. Once things are picked up from the floor (and this is where kids can help – dump into a laundry basket and then deliver them into their rooms -you can make it a game for the little ones), I feel refreshed and can tackle the next thing.

Are you motivated to get more done? Why or why not.

Problem: I’m not motivated. This is a major issue in the problem with getting things done! It’s just like our kids and not finishing schoolwork. We say, “Just do it!” Some days I have to make myself work some days when I don’t feel like I want to get out of bed! So why are you not motivated? Can you figure it out.

Solution: Figuring out your motivation issue can be as simple as setting short-term goals for the day. Maybe one hour of productivity each day broken up into five-minute chunks. You can clean up for five minutes – sort laundry – start the wash, etc. Tell laundry story.

What is holding you back from accomplishing more?

Problem: If you are super unproductive there could be an underlying issue. Depression, lack of motivation, feeling that no one cares.

Solution: Do it for yourself, not others. In this lifetime no one is really going to appreciate all we do – and think about it, how much are we appreciated. I recently heard a talk by a pastor where he applied a Biblical passage to marriage and he said that men want to be appreciated and women want to be loved and the breakdown in relationships happens when there is a lack of these two factors that are so important in our lives. When we feel loved we feel appreciated and will move mountains to get things down. So look in the mirror and know you are loved by the Almighty and set those short-term goals (worry about long term later) and get some things down on paper and accomplished. You will feel so much better.

Are your goals unrealistic?

Problem: We set these lofty goals for ourselves that there is no way we can accomplish unless we have a ton of help. Look at your goals and really see if they are doable and if not…revise and chop!

Solution: Bite-sized goals that are achievable in this lifetime. I know everyone says to make these long-term goals but those freaked me out for the sheer reason that I might fail and that held me back. Once I did things just because they had to get done and focused on the job at hand, guess what? Dishes got washed at the right time and life went on. Just do it. Set reasonable goals. Work in pockets of time you have.

Do you have help or can you enlist (trade) help with others?

Problem: Let’s face it if you have a bunch of little ones underfoot you can’t get much done without neglecting the kids. Some kids are super needy and sometimes having older ones can spoil little ones. So think about your immediate needs and a solution.

Solution: It is great to trade with a friend or better yet have a babysitter over to the house while you are at home. Or can shop without little ones. Here is an invaluable tip that really helped me… I had toys the kids never used unless I needed them occupied. Once when my two-year-old got into a box of rubber bands and was quiet (you know that means they are getting in trouble) after a quick peek to see that he was okay, I let him go for it and play with the box. There was a mess afterwards but I was able to bulk cook some meals and picking rubber bands out of the seat cushions (about a ten-minute job) was way worth it. In fact, he helped.

Last thoughts and Get IT Done Tips:

Most of the time we waste time on things that we later regret like social media. Promise yourself ten or fifteen minutes, put on a timer and stick to it. Also, if you are wandering around the house without purpose it is time to make a plan. Remember the old adage, “Rome was not built in one day.”

Let it go is another mantra that has served me well. I’m not a great housekeeper so years ago I hired help. It made us all happy and it was two times a month. Even if it is once a month it will be great if you can afford it, or hire a homeschooled high schooler they will love the extra cash.

Also, some things do not need to get done. For example spring cleaning or baking cookies for the entire neighborhood!

And lastly if you are not feeling well, this is difficult. Some of you suffer from chronic fatigue. Check your diet, cut out sugar and too many carbs. Ladies I’ve done it and not it is not easy but my energy soared. Whatever is the problem you can overcome it. Someone recently told me that balance of nature was something they took – and I think this is similar to Juice Plus I took in my thirties when I had no energy. I’m in my 60s now and feel better than ever – why? Because of what I eat. Once you get your health in check the sky is the limit.

I hope this helped you, and please share this podcast with a friend, share it on your social media page (set the time, 10 minutes!) and join our private Facebook pages. And, give me a star rating on your podcast app.

 

 


A Special Thank You to Our Network Sponsor:  Show Me The Father Movie

The Kendrick Brothers, creators of WAR ROOM and FIREPROOF, have some exciting news to share: they have TWO films coming to theaters this fall—SHOW ME THE FATHER on September 10 and COURAGEOUS Legacy on September 24.

Featuring a variety of amazing, true stories, the Kendrick Brothers’ new feature film SHOW ME THE FATHER takes audiences on an inspiring and emotional cinematic journey. Their first documentary film has something for everyone and invites you to think differently about how you view your earthly father story and also how you personally relate to God.

Check out the trailer here!


 

Christ in the Chaos – HIRL Episode 34

HIRL-Episode-34Kimm Crandall was the perfect homeschooling mom: she had her curriculum chosen carefully, her children lined up quietly and obediently in the church pew, and her home-ground wheat bread delivered piping hot from her oven.

She was doing everything “right”. Still, God seemed angry with her, and she felt as if nothing she did would make Him happy with her. As she polished up the outside, she was dying slowly on the inside, bound up by her own good works and suffocating under the lack of grace within the homeschooling community she was a part of.

It’s an important and tender interview, peppered with humor and self-effacing realism. But the beautiful truth here is that Kimm boldly and bravely points us back to the Jesus, the only One who redeems every mess, every moment, and every bit of chaos.



Visit our sponsor:

Are you looking for a new Math Curriculum?

CTCMath specializes in providing online video tutorials that take a multi-sensory approach to learning. Favorably reviewed in Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks and The Old Schoolhouse Crew Review, the lessons are short and concise to help your children break down concepts and appreciate math in a whole new way!

The lessons are taught the traditional way, not to a “test”.

Each one of the video tutorials is taught by an internationally acclaimed teacher, Pat Murray, who is renowned for teaching math concepts in a simple, easy-to-understand way (and in only a few minutes at a time). Using a multi-sensory approach having the combination of effective graphics and animation synchronized with the voice of a friendly teacher together with practical assessment. This three-pronged attack makes learning so much easier and more effective. Even students who struggled with math are getting fantastic results! And ones who were doing OK before are now doing brilliantly.

Visit ctcmath.com today to start your free trial.

Special Replay: The Best Homeschool Year Ever

Let's Talk About making this The Best Homeschool Year Ever!Let’s Talk About making this The Best Homeschool Year Ever!

Lunch with Meredith Curtis and Felice Gerwitz

Don’t forget to click the subscribe button and follow on iTunes or download your copy today! 

Thanks to our sponsors for allowing us to bring you this show as well as others on this network to you, absolutely free!

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K12.com – Visit the free online school here

Our sponsors make these shows free to our subscribers.

Visit Media Angels HERE andPowerline Productions HERE

sponsors vintage - Media Angels and Powerline-1

Meredith’s List

  1. Commit year to prayer
  2. Kick off with enthusiasm “We’re going to learn about ….”
  3. Organize all your books, supplies, etc so they are easy to access
  4. Schedule — General and for each student

Felice’s List

  1. Begin with prayer – what does the Lord want you to focus on this year.
  2. Look at each child’s strength’s and weaknesses – let’s work on building up the weakness
  3. Goal vs. Plan – how to make it all work together in the time you have.
  4. Plan ahead. Make sure you have a backup plan.

Photo Credit: DepositPhoto.com Copyright Angels_a

Special Replay: The Desperate Need To Get It Right

Free homeschool podcast about the pressure to do things right as a homeschooling mom.

Special Replay Episode:  When we talk about the desperate need to get it right, Fletch is quick to say, “Oh! You mean homeschooling in the age of Pinterest?” On this episode we are talking about how to homeschool when we feel like we just don’t measure up to the other homeschool moms we know.

We are joined in the studio by Kym Smythe, Sabrina Justison and Vicki Tillman, three of the sisters from 7SistersHomeschool.com and The Homeschool Highschool Podcast. We discuss how to handle the competition, comparisons and the desperate need to get it right.

7SistersHomeschool.com has a curriculum bundle of 10 resources including a Career Exploration workbook, tools for writing a personal mission statement, practical instruction for developing interview skills and more. Each piece of the bundle is in .pdf ebook format and downloads instantly to your device after purchase. The bundle is regularly priced at $13.45, but for Homeschooling In Real Life listeners your big sisters at 7SistersHomeschool.com are offering a coupon code that will knock 25% off that price; you pay just $10.08 when you use coupon code 7sistershirl. For a detailed description of all that’s in the Career Exploration Bundle, check out the ebookstore at 7SistersHomeschool.com.


SHOW NOTES:

Recommended Resources:
7SistersHomeschool.com
Homeschool Highschool Podcast

Follow Fletch/Kendra:
Fletch Twitter
Kendra Twitter

Follow the Studio Dogs:
Betty the Surf Dog – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website
Rasta The Chocolate Lab – Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Website

Previous Episodes Mentioned:
None

Music clips used on this episode:
Get It Right – Glee Cast – Purchase it Here


LISTEN HERE

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



Visit our sponsor:

Are you looking for a new Math Curriculum?

CTCMath specializes in providing online video tutorials that take a multi-sensory approach to learning. Favorably reviewed in Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks and The Old Schoolhouse Crew Review, the lessons are short and concise to help your children break down concepts and appreciate math in a whole new way!

The lessons are taught the traditional way, not to a “test”.

Each one of the video tutorials is taught by an internationally acclaimed teacher, Pat Murray, who is renowned for teaching math concepts in a simple, easy-to-understand way (and in only a few minutes at a time). Using a multi-sensory approach having the combination of effective graphics and animation synchronized with the voice of a friendly teacher together with practical assessment. This three-pronged attack makes learning so much easier and more effective. Even students who struggled with math are getting fantastic results! And ones who were doing OK before are now doing brilliantly.

Visit ctcmath.com today to start your free trial.

Math The Easy Way

Are you ready for math the easy way? Enjoy my special guest Pat Murray – he’s been a math teacher and coach for more than thirty-six years.Math The Easy Way – Episode 435

Are you ready for math the easy way? Enjoy my special guest Pat Murray – he’s been a math teacher and coach for more than thirty-six years.

And would you believe that Over that time, the programs and courses Pat and his company developed have helped students and families numbering in the tens and hundreds of thousands in more than seventy-two countries. So no matter where you live this information is accessible!

Pat and his beautiful wife Maree live in Sydney Australia, have 10 children, and 7 grandchildren – soon to be 8 (next month).

So, we are going to delve into seven of the most valuable tips for teaching math to kids –of all ages. I was amazed that your math programs have one low cost for a year, per family and it covers grades 1 through high school which is amazing and only a man with a big family understands what a blessing that is to parents with many children….

  1. Short concise explanations – clarity is important.
  2. Immediate practice – get them to practice it quickly and feedback.
  3. Rote learning memorizing, times tables, important facts. [Great examples given on the audio!]
  4. The sequence can make a difference. Start with the easiest stuff first, encourage success.
  5. Discovery and inquiring learning that is taught first by example.
  6. Puzzles and problem solving – a fun activity. Build interest.
  7. Parents – avoid frustration. Kids will avoid help, due.

Pat shares a mathematical trick – kids can learn as a parent to impress their kids.

 


Visit our sponsor:

Are you looking for a new Math Curriculum?

CTCMath specializes in providing online video tutorials that take a multi-sensory approach to learning. Favorably reviewed in Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks and The Old Schoolhouse Crew Review, the lessons are short and concise to help your children break down concepts and appreciate math in a whole new way!

The lessons are taught the traditional way, not to a “test”.

Each one of the video tutorials is taught by an internationally acclaimed teacher, Pat Murray, who is renowned for teaching math concepts in a simple, easy-to-understand way (and in only a few minutes at a time). Using a multi-sensory approach having the combination of effective graphics and animation synchronized with the voice of a friendly teacher together with practical assessment. This three-pronged attack makes learning so much easier and more effective. Even students who struggled with math are getting fantastic results! And ones who were doing OK before are now doing brilliantly.

Visit ctcmath.com today to start your free trial.

Four-Hour School Day

Have you considered a four hour school day? Well if not, my guest today will share how she trimmed the fat of her school day. How did she do this? Listen to find out.Four Hour School Day ~ Episode 434

Have you considered a four hour school day? Well if not, my guest today will share how she trimmed the fat of her school day. How did she do this? Listen to find out.

Check out her book, The Four-Hour School Day!

Book press release: 

Buy the book here: 

Durenda Wilson Facebook 

Durenda Wilson Instagram:

Why take all day when you can finish your school day in a way that is great for mom, dad and the kids.

This was a great interview and I hope you listen to the entire podcast – here is a nutshell version of our chat! Much more is on the interview. Durenda has some great insights on homeschooling!

Durenda shares about the beginning of her homeschool journey. [For details listen to the audio] She says, “…we always just tell people we were selfish, we did not want to share our kids with anybody else, especially not for that many hours a week. And we felt like there were some things we really wanted our kids to have. We, we wanted first of all time with them because we wanted to disciple them. And we know that that takes time and we didn’t feel like we could do the kind of job we wanted to by sending them away all day, five days a week. And then the other thing is we really wanted our kids to have a childhood.

Some of the key points:

  1. giving them time and space to play and grow and develop at their own pace.
  2. A combination of directed learning and self-directed learning.

God was calling us to do it. He was going to give us what we needed to do that. And I tell parents all the time, you have to understand that your role in your child’s life can’t be underestimated. You have a very, very significant role in their lives. You know, God ordained the family. That was his idea.

  1. In the book, the Four Hour School Day, there is a challenge to parents. After laying out the plan I hope to broaden their view of what education is. And this book is for people who are thinking about homeschooling on the fence or already homeschooling and
  2. There is such a strong thread of growing a strong, healthy family. And that’s at the end of the day, that is one of the biggest blessings of homeschooling. And we’ve found this with our own kids. I spent a lot of time along the way, learning conflict resolution so that I could teach it to my children along the way because I wanted them to not only be friends. I want them to understand how important relationships are, how important family relationships are. And so we, I really made a concerted effort to nurture sibling relationships. And that means taking time along the way to nurture those relationships.
  3. Homeschooling and family… this is really training ground. It’s, it’s sometimes the hardest place to do it because you feel safe there. And so you tend to not behave yourself as much and you take each other for granted. And so we were always working on that, you know, is that how you would treat a friend or is that how you would want to be treated in that situation? And so just all of that just has ended up affecting our children in so many positive ways. Not only are they best friends, they also know what it looks like when they, when they’re working with other people on jobs, in their careers.

The author of the Four Hour School Day:

I always tell parents to be stubborn about your goals, but flexible about your methods. So the mission statement would be about your ultimate goals. And then, and then we’re flexible about the methods of how we’re going to get there depending on the child, depending on the season of life we’re in developmentally where our kids are on that, scope as well. We always have a direction. I think this is important because we can get caught up in the minutiae of homeschooling.

(Much more on the audio)

The Four-Hour School Day will help you to:

  • Work with your child’s interests and passions for an enjoyable learning experience
  • Cultivate independent learning in your child so you have more time and your child
  • develops more curiosity
  • Navigate the different schooling stages your child will go through
  • Find an engaged community so that you can start this adventure with all the support you
  • need.

About the Author:

Durenda married Darryl in 1989, and she is a mom to eight kids born less than thirteen years apart. She always considered motherhood to be the ultimate career, but she had no idea of the countless ways it would deepen and humble her. Many, many times she found herself unsure and struggling, only to discover God’s strength at the end of her rope. She realized she experienced the grace she desperately needed when she took the time to slow her heart and listen for His still, small voice. Her greatest joy is helping moms discover that grace as well–and with it the courage to put their full trust in Him as they learn to hear His voice above all others. Connect with Durenda at durendawilson.com.


Visit our sponsor:

Are you looking for a new Math Curriculum?

CTCMath specializes in providing online video tutorials that take a multi-sensory approach to learning. Favorably reviewed in Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks and The Old Schoolhouse Crew Review, the lessons are short and concise to help your children break down concepts and appreciate math in a whole new way!

The lessons are taught the traditional way, not to a “test”.

Each one of the video tutorials is taught by an internationally acclaimed teacher, Pat Murray, who is renowned for teaching math concepts in a simple, easy-to-understand way (and in only a few minutes at a time). Using a multi-sensory approach having the combination of effective graphics and animation synchronized with the voice of a friendly teacher together with practical assessment. This three-pronged attack makes learning so much easier and more effective. Even students who struggled with math are getting fantastic results! And ones who were doing OK before are now doing brilliantly.

Visit ctcmath.com today to start your free trial.

Scheduling Hacks For Homeschool Moms

When you are a busy mom it is important to have scheduling hacks that work. And, that goes double for anyone out there who is a homeschool mom. In this episode, I share scheduling hacks that work well for me and how I get so much done in the little time I have each day.Scheduling Hacks ~ Episode 433

When you are a busy mom it is important to have scheduling hacks that work. And, that goes double for anyone out there who is a homeschool mom. In this episode, I share scheduling hacks that work well for me and how I get so much done in the little time I have each day.

Check out this amazing website for deep discounts on books and products that can save you time.

When we think about scheduling so many things to come to mind. Scheduling time for work, cooking, cleaning, shopping, errands, and lessons. Each day there are so many interruptions as well as unproductive times. If we could bottle all of that time wasted it would add up to hours and hours each week. You know your problem areas so I’m not going to list all the of the downfalls to trying to schedule and to keep to a schedule. We have interruptions each day and how we handle these will help.

Scheduling takes planning. And, scheduling takes prioritizing. Two things we can improve up. Scheduling also takes flexibility. So, planning, prioritizing, and flexibility. Saving time also includes understanding what is a time-waster. Is it talking on the phone, social media? Is it text messaging? Whatever pulls you out of your train of thought wastes time.

Also, when we talk about scheduling we are talking about using the time you have the best you can. So, what makes the most sense in your already busy life, and… what is the best use of your time? Is it time-effective? Can you have someone else do this task or it is something you have to tackle? These are questions we can ask ourselves as we look at our projects!

Look at your schedule with the thoughts of planning to get the most out of your time, setting up your schedule with the most important things first and remembering that life happens.

  1. Schedule time to schedule. We are usually too busy to even stop and plan. I love to plan months ahead of time and that gives me such a sense of accomplishment. If you can trade off with someone to watch the kids or hire a babysitter if you have little ones. Uninterrupted planning time can really help. For example, you are going to work on scheduling household chores, or homeschool days. Maybe you want to schedule your year. Remember that we can be overscheduled and to leave time for flexibility.
  2. Schedule out-of-the-house trips. By planning trips in one day, you can save so much time. And do your errands in order. Just think it through where you have to go and start from the farthest location from home and work back. Or prioritize if necessary. Some families leave Friday open for catch-up days, or to schedule a field trip or something fun to do.
  3. Schedule online tools. Do you pay bills online? Shop? When do you do these things? If you can set up auto-payments that is a huge time saver. I have a spreadsheet I use (Google Docs) and I look at it one time a week for about 5-10minutes to be sure payments have been made. Some payments I still manually pay. However, others are set up on auto. Huge time saver.
  4. Block time. This has been a lifesaver for me. Knowing when you are going to do which task helps tremendously and cuts way down on the actual time to do the project or task. Block times for answering emails, grocery shopping (even if it shopping online), and other tasks that can be done in increments of 15 minutes. You will be shocked at how much you can get done in 15 minutes. Also, I block mega-cooking time or — cooking double or even triple and freezing the rest. These are ways to schedule your time in a way that is the most useful.
  5. Schedule break, exercise, reading time with your kids or without kids. I found that if I have something to look forward to I am more productive. You will feel better and while I didn’t think I had time for a break it was amazing that just a few minutes could be invigorating!

Does this give you ideas for the ways that you can increase your productivity by smart scheduling?  I hope so! One last word. There is some debate about whether multi-tasking is effective, and I think it depends on the person. For some, it works fine and for others, it can disrupt their concentration. So, think about this when you schedule and work on ways that will enhance your productivity. Scheduling is just one way.


Visit our sponsor:

Are you looking for a new Math Curriculum?

CTCMath specializes in providing online video tutorials that take a multi-sensory approach to learning. Favorably reviewed in Cathy Duffy’s 102 Top Picks and The Old Schoolhouse Crew Review, the lessons are short and concise to help your children break down concepts and appreciate math in a whole new way!

The lessons are taught the traditional way, not to a “test”.

Each one of the video tutorials is taught by an internationally acclaimed teacher, Pat Murray, who is renowned for teaching math concepts in a simple, easy-to-understand way (and in only a few minutes at a time). Using a multi-sensory approach having the combination of effective graphics and animation synchronized with the voice of a friendly teacher together with practical assessment. This three-pronged attack makes learning so much easier and more effective. Even students who struggled with math are getting fantastic results! And ones who were doing OK before are now doing brilliantly.

Visit ctcmath.com today to start your free trial.

Grounding Yourself in Mathematics

Parents and teachers, please dedicate quality time to rounding and estimating with your students.  You’ll see that effort pay off as your child progresses through their math levels.There’s that moment in every comedy where the befuddled comic relief character says, “Wait a second…” as he notices something like his house was slowly emptied of all its possessions while he was distracted by the clever antagonist.

 

As parents and teachers, we are hoping to instill that moment of pause that something could be wrong in our math students as they solve problems and come across mistakes.  For this purpose, we ask our students, starting in elementary, to round and to estimate.

 

When the students have an idea of what the answer should be, they have a much better chance at catching a small mistake in their work and getting back on the right track.  Parents and teachers, please dedicate quality time to rounding and estimating with your students.  You’ll see that effort pay off as your child progresses through their math levels.

 

Building on the skill of estimation, I like to show my students how to be confident in the steps they take to solve complicated problems by having them ground themselves in a simple example.  I’ll demonstrate this with a topic all math students dread…fractions.

 

Imagine a cookie that was broken in half.  You are given half a sugar cookie and your faithful dog Buster has come begging at your feet for a bite of it.  You break your half in half and give it to him.  What actually went into your mouth was one fourth of a cookie.  Mathematically:  half of half is one fourth.  Let’s see that played out:

 

How did we get from our question to our answer?

 

We can see that the numerator multiplied times itself all the way across (one times one equals one).

 

We can see that the denominator multiplied times itself all the way across too (two times two equals four).

 

Ergo, to multiply fractions, multiply straight across the numerator and straight across the denominator.

 

Now when your student is facing something like this and can’t remember how to solve it…

 

…they can ground themselves with the example with the cookie halves and solve with confidence.

 

Just one simple trick, grounding themselves in an example they know is true, and students go from intimidated to determined with their practice problems.

 

Try this technique the next time your student is stumped.  Show him that he has the tools to break the problem down and fight for his answer.  When he has earned the answer for himself, his confidence will soar and he’ll be excited for whatever challenge comes next.

 

To learn more please visit www.ctcmath.com.


By Karen Branch

www.ctcmath.com

Special Replay – Family Loyalty: For Kids

Do you have family loyalty? Do you know what it means to be loyal?Family Loyalty: For Kids

Do you have family loyalty? Do you know what it means to be loyal? In this episode we are going to talk about your family, your parents, and those adults in charge of you. And we are going to talk about that and so much more. Another episode for the kids!

Listen to these past episodes just for kids!

  1. Kids Making Good Decisions.
  2. Making Good Choices – Why Should You?

Books for tweens – Truth Seekers Mystery Series. 

What do you think being loyal means? If you said it has to do with standing by someone or some idea or purpose these are all correct. We hear about loyalty when we think about the military. The men who fight for our country to keep us safe, they are loyal to an idea or a cause. When people described people that were loyal they used the word chivalry. Chivalry means to protect, to be honest, to be kind and to care even to the point of giving your life. But did you know being loyal applies to your parents and your family as well?

So, again – let’s think about this word loyalty. Are your parents loyal to you?

Your parents put you first, above people not in your family, right? They feed you, make sure you have clothes to wear and a place to sleep. And, for homeschoolers you know your parents are your teachers.  You listen to your teachers whether it is a parent or a teacher outside of the home. So, what happens when someone tells you to trust? Well, trust is earned for the most part. If you are a kid, maybe you have lost your parent’s trust by making the wrong choices. But, generally, people who are authority figures should be trusted.

Do you remember in your early grades you studied about community helpers? These are people who had jobs within a community where you live that serve in a job that helps, for example, law enforcement, teachers, firefighters, emergency personnel like ambulance drivers and EMTs or paramedics. These are people in authority. There are many people that fall into this category. They pretty much get our trust because they are an authority figure. You really don’t want to argue with a firefighter who is trying to rescue you from a burning building.

Well, our parents are authority figures as well. Some parents are great and some, well not so much. Some kids in a family are great, some are not so great, but no family is perfect. We all make mistakes and when we do, we should all apologize and say we are sorry. I have written many apology notes to my kids during times when I messed up. Yes, even adults make mistakes. But we are still a family.

We should have family loyalty. It is important. Maybe you yell at your siblings but if someone else says something bad about them you want to fight with that person to defend your sister or brother, or maybe mom or dad. We should be loyal to our family because we know our family cares about us, even if they do not always show us they care.

Who put your family together? Are you a person of faith? If so, you believe that God had a hand in putting your family together. Maybe you wish that God didn’t give you the family you have because you think another family is better. God gives us all free will, we are not puppets, and we can make our own choices. Some people make good choices and others do not. So, where does that leave us?

But why have family loyalty? Why is that important? For some of you, you may think that is a strange question. I started thinking about this the other day when I caught the tail end of a superhero movie on television. Well, I think it was a superhero – it was an X-Men movie–are they superhero? I don’t even know. Anyway, at the end of the movie I heard one of the characters say some words that I have heard before. I heard these in my college classes. It started with this:

“Forget everything your parents have taught you.”

What! Why would someone say that to you? Why should you forget everything your parents taught you?

  1. Would your parents teach you something that is bad?
  2. Would your parents want to harm you?
  3. Would your parents teach you something that your teachers or other authority figures may not want you to know?Hmm…

You are a kid no matter how old you are. You will always be a kid to your parents. Your parents love you and they care about you. They want you to be loyal to your family and believe what they have taught you at home is right and just.

  1. Parents teach you about right and wrong.
  2. Parents teach you about faith.
  3. Parents teach you about values and morals. Basically, families teach you important things that they want you to learn.

If someone tells you to forget everything your parents taught you and listen to them, doesn’t that make you suspicions? When I heard a teacher say that to me, this is what I thought.

  1. Why should I listen to you, OVER my parents? I don’t know you or what you believe.
  2. I will respect you if you are a teacher or authority figure, but you are making me pretty suspicious if you are telling me not to believe my parents.
  3. I will not believe everything YOU say, without thinking it through.

An authority figure that tells you to forget what your parents say that does not know what your parents said, is wrong. Why do they say this? A fancy way of saying this is they have an agenda. They think they know better than your parents. They want you to think the same way they do, and they do not want you to have an opinion that is different from theirs. There was a movie God’s Not Dead and in that movie the professor wanted everyone to sign a piece of paper that said that God was a myth and the belief in God was not true. Everyone in the class signed the paper except for one student. And the professor was very angry with him, and tried all different ways to make him back down.

This is why family loyalty is important but also what you believe. If you are confused, ask your parents.

Many teachers really do a good job and they care. But, some teachers really don’t want you to have an opinion and view that is different than theirs.  This happens to some adults at work as well. If people really care they should understand that we all think differently. Yes, even if we disagree. You should be allowed to have your opinions and other people should be allowed to have their opinions.

So, why are we talking about family loyalty? Because if we are loyal to our families we:

  1. Put our family over your friends. We are committed to each other.
  2. We enjoy the family that God gave us.
  3. We stand up for members of our family.
  4. We stand with the members of our family.
  5. We work together as a family toward common goals.
  6. We make a commitment to our families.
  7. We encourage our family members and not put them down.

Each one of you is amazing and important and each one of you—I believe was created in the image and likeness of God. God does not make junk! he made you and gave you to the family you have, and we make the best with our family. Our family is practice for the family you will someday be with and do your part to be the best you can.