Homeschooling with Technology

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Homeschooling with TechnologyWhether you love technology or are “tech-challenged” – the Homeschooling with Technology podcast is for you!  Technology can help you run your homeschool more efficiently, make lessons more engaging and keep you connected to what is happening all over the world.

When your children graduate from your homeschool, they will be launched into an every-changing techie world. You need to make sure they are ready for that.

And this podcast will help you navigate it all so that you can be confident “Homeschooling with Technology”.

Your podcast host, Meryl van der Merwe, loved using technology while she homeschooled her own children. Now she uses it in the online classes and web-based unit studies she teaches at FundaFunda Academy.com.

Meryl loves trying to keep up-to-date with new technology that will benefit homeschoolers and she wants to share all the best resources she finds with you.

In this podcast, you will

    • learn about resources for specific subjects
    • get tips on how to use tech to improve your productivity
    • find out what techie skills your children should have
        and so much more!

Join Meryl each Wednesday for a 15-minute podcast. Listen on Stitcher, iTunes, or right here (just scroll down). And be sure to subscribe so that you won’t miss a single episode!

Contact Meryl via email on meryl@mediaangels.com or connect with her on Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook.

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Homeschooling with Technology

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Homeschooling with Technology Episodes

Participate in the Hour of Code

62: Participate in the Hour of Code   The Hour of Code will be held during the week of 9 – 15 December 2019, BUT you can participate in the activities any time during the year. The goal is not to learn to code, but to learn what coding is and that coding is fun […]

Replay: 10 Techie Tools I am grateful for

This is a replay of episode 9. You can find the show notes here https://media.blubrry.com/uhsrnetwork/p/media.blubrry.com/homeschoolingtech/p/media.blubrry.com/uhsrnetwork/p/content.blubrry.com/uhsrnetwork/HWT_09_TechieToolsGratefulFor.mp3Podcast: Play in new window | DownloadSubscribe: Android | Google Podcasts | Stitcher | TuneIn | Spotify | RSS | More

Online Educational Thanksgiving Activities

Episode 61: Online Educational Thanksgiving Activities Here are the online educational Thanksgiving activities mentioned in this episode. Be sure to listen to learn more about each one. Before you start, spend some time getting to understand what the first Thanksgiving was really like from sources like this one online and the book, Lies my Teacher […]

Teaching kids soft skills for digital communication

Episode 60: Teaching Kids Soft Skills for Digital Communication – interview with Lisa Nehring Lisa Nehring from True North Homeschool Academy and the Soft Skills 101 podcast is the guest on today’s show. She shares with us some of the soft skills for digital communication we need to teach our children. Learn more about the […]

Online Personal Finance games and interactive activities

Episode 59: Online Personal Finance games and interactive activities Online personal finance games and interactive activities give teens the opportunity to practice their financial literacy skills. Here are the websites mentioned in this episode: 1. Online Insurance Games Playinsure.com offers 2 games – one for home insurance and one for auto insurance. For both, you […]

How to teach your kids to identify fake news

Episode 58: How to teach your kids to identify fake news In this episode, I suggest a number of ways for you to teach your kids to identify fake news. To start, it would be useful to listen to this Planet Money episode, Finding the Fake News King, in which they trace a piece of […]

Teaching kids about copyright and plagiarism

Episode 57: Teaching Kids about Copyright and Plagiarism Are you teaching your kids about copyright and plagiarism? Too many students in my online classes are routinely plagiarising and breaking copyright. I don’t think many realize that what they are doing is wrong. Copyright Be sure to explain to your children that unless the project they […]

Learning History through Video Games

Episode 56:Learning History through Video Games with Charlene Hess Charlene Hess of Hess Un-Academy joins me in this episode as we talk about learning history through video games. Be sure to visit her Facebook page. When my children were young we all enjoyed playing Orgeon Trail together. Oregon Trail is seen as the first educational […]

How much screentime for your children?

Episode 55: How much screentime for your children? My previous episode on Homeschooling Digital Natives gives context to this episode so if you haven’t listened to it yet, you might it helpful as you consider the question, “How much screentime for your children?” I suggest you look for balance and to help you, here are […]

Homeschooling Digital Natives

Episode 54: Homeschooling Digital Natives Most of you are digital immigrants homeschooling digital natives. In 2001 Mark Prensky coined the terms “digital natives” and “digital immigrants”. ‘Digital Native’ is used to describe someone born in the digital era. ‘Digital Immigrant’ is used to describe someone born before the digital era. This comic created by Adam […]

Why Homeschool Moms Need to be Tech-Savvy

Episode 53: Why homeschool moms need to be tech-savvy with Felice Gerwitz It’s our one year birthday!! Before we talk about “Why Homeschool Moms Need to be Tech-Savvy” let’s talk about birthday gifts! If you find this podcast useful, the best gift you can give us is a rating and review on Apple Podcasts or […]

Using Technology to Eat Healthy

Episode 52: Using Technology to Eat Healthy with Debbie Hanyon In this episode, Debbie Hanyon from Homeschooling Dietitian Mom, joins us to share how she uses technology to eat healthy. Debbie is a homeschool mom and she has a number of resources on her website other homeschool moms will find helpful. Take a special look […]

Free Website Creation Tools

Episode 51: Free Website Creation Tools Why is it a good idea to teach students to create websites? Useful skill Can be used for community service- 4-H group, Lego League Team, homeschool support group If they start a business they will need one Digital portfolios As a way to share what they are learning instead […]

How to Create Online Choose Your Own Adventure Games

Episode 50: How to Create Online Choose Your Own Adventure Games Here are 3 different resources students can use to create online choose-your-own-adventure games. 1. Text Adventures Text Adventures actually has 3 different options to create choose-your-own-adventure games. There is the option to download software, but I have always used the online version. Initially, you […]

PHET Science Simulations

Episode 49: PHET Science Simulations with Kristin Moon Today’s interview is with Kristin Moon from Kristin Moon Science and the topic is PHET Science Simulations. You can also follow her on Facebook. Why use simulations Simulations allow students to have a concrete idea of concepts that are difficult to explain. What are PHET simulations They […]

Web-based Unit Studies

Episode 48: Web-based Unit Studies Web-based unit studies are NOT simply pdfs instead of physical books, but rather interactive and accessed through an online classroom. What are web-based unit studies? mini online self-paced classes make use of online resources eg videos, interactive websites, online games, audio, infographics have online projects where the students use digital […]

Fanschool games – bringing the fun of fantasy sports to education

Episode 47: Fanschool – bringing the fun of fantasy sports to education with Eric Nelson Eric Nelson first created Fanschool games when he was a teacher and he played it with his classes. A few years ago he put it online – and now your family can enjoy playing too. Fanschool Games You can find […]

Using technology to improve writing

Episode 46: Using technology to improve writing Here are the tools mentioned in the episode that can be used by your children to improve writing skills. 1. Grammarly 2. Hemingway app 3. The Most Dangerous Writing Prompt Generator – 4. Purdue OWL Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University 5. My Access 6. Online Writing […]

Free online government and civics games

Episode 45: Free online government and civics games   These are the free online government and civics games mentioned in this episode. Most of them are geared to middle and high school students but elementary students can enjoy some of them too. 1. The American Presidency – match actual events from Trumans day with 7 […]

Online resources to help you select curriculum

Episode 44: Online resources to help you select curriculum In this episode, we look at 6 steps to use online resources to help you select curriculum that is a good fit for your child. Please refer to episode 36 – Tips for buying and selling curriculum online to help you find the best prices for […]

Unplugged Coding

Episode 43: Unplugged Coding with Sandra Balisky   Be sure to join our Facebook group where we carry on the discussion about Homeschooling with Technology. Sandra Balisky from Real World Learners is our guest today. She has a background as a math and English teacher and is now homeschooling her own children and working on […]

Online Tools for Photography

Episode 42: Online Tools for Photography with Piers van der Merwe   Piers is not only my husband, but also the photography teacher at FundaFunda Academy. You can see his work at Onstandby Travel and on Smugmug. Here are the online tools for photography he mentions in this episode. 1. Editing Tools Google and Apple […]

Explore cities with digital scavenger hunts

Episode 41: Explore cities with digital scavenger hunts   My oldest daughter, Rachel, suggested I do an episode on this as she and I have enjoyed a number of Digital Scavenger Hunts together. Rachel teaches the Visual Literacy class for FundaFunda Academy. Digital scavenger hunts can be found in most cities – and sometimes even […]

How teens can start a podcast

Episode 40: How teens can start a podcast with Abby Banks   Be sure to join our Facebook group where we carry on the discussion about Homeschooling with Technology. Today’s guest is Abby Banks from Making Room for One More. She is also the host of the Homeschool with Moxie podcast. Abby explains how teens […]

Ways teens can make money online

Episode 39: Ways teens can make money online   Be sure to join our Facebook group where we carry on the discussion about Homeschooling with Technology. Today’s guest is Abby Banks from Making Room for One More. She is also the host of the Homeschool with Moxie podcast. She will be drawing on her own […]

Geocaching – Technology meets nature

Episode 38: Geocaching – Technology meets nature   Be sure to join our Facebook group where we carry on the discussion about Homeschooling with Technology. Geocaching is a fun “treasure” hunt in nature to find hidden caches using GPS and your eyes 🙂 Go to the official Geocaching website and there you will find links […]

Programming with Scratch

Episode 37: Programming with Scratch   In episode 11, I covered ways to introduce your children to programming. One of those ways was Scratch, and in this episode, I will go into more detail about programming with Scratch. What is Scratch? Scratch was created by a team at MIT to be an accessible way for […]

Tips for buying and selling curriculum online

Episode 36: Tips for buying and selling curriculum online   If you are buying or selling curriculum online this summer, here are some tips to help you. And be sure to join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast. We will carry on the conversation there. Some places to buy and sell […]

Using technology to study history

Episode 35: Using technology to study history with Vicki Tillman   Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast. My guest today is Vicki Tillman. She is a fellow podshow host and you can listen to her on The Homeschool Highschool Podcast. She develops curriculum and is a homeschool coach at 7 […]

4-H and Technology

Episode 34: 4-H and Technology   4-H started over 100 years ago. According to the 4-H website the goal of 4-H is to “help young people and their families gain the skills needed to be proactive forces in their communities and develop ideas for a more innovative economy”. Although 4-H started as an agricultural youth […]

How Your Children Can Learn Digital Art

Episode 33: How your children can learn digital art with Jim Pence   Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast Be sure to visit our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy‘s website and take a look at their Visual Literacy online class for high school. This provides a 1/2 credit as an Art elective […]

MOOCs – how to use them for yourself and your teens

Episode 32: MOOCs – how to use them for yourself and your teens   Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the classes they are offering for high school credit this summer. MOOC = Massive Open Online Courses The start of MOOCs is […]

Technology and Travel Planning with your children

Episode 31: Technology and Travel Planning with Your Children   Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the classes they are offering for high school credit this summer. Intro the Theatre is a lot of fun. Students learn not just about acting but […]

Online Tools to Help Teens Study

Episode 30: Online Tools to Help Teens Study Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast! And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the classes they are offering for high school credit this summer. Photography is one class that is ideal to take over the summer when there are plenty of […]

4 Free Online History games

Episode 29: 4 Free Online History games Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast! And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the web-based unit studies and full semester classes they offer. They also have options for summer learning! Many of their classes incorporate games like the ones discussed in this […]

Using Google MyMaps for Techie Projects

Episode 28: Using Google MyMaps for Techie Projects Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast! And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the web-based unit studies and full semester classes they offer. They also have options for summer learning! Google MyMaps allows you to customize a Google map. Start by […]

Homeschooling with Google Maps

Episode 27: Homeschooling with Google Maps Join our Facebook Group especially for the listeners of this podcast! And visit our sponsor FundaFunda Academy to see the web-based unit studies and full semester classes they offer. How to use Google Maps in your Homeschool 1. Let your children navigate using the app. It teaches them to […]

Online communication skills your children need to learn

Episode 26: Online communication skills your children need to learn Looking for online classes for the new year for your children? Take a look at what our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy has to offer. 1. Start teaching them these skills early They should choose their email username carefully They should get in the habit of checking […]

How to use Quizlet to learn foreign language vocabulary with Suzette Laporte-Ayo

Episode 25: How to use Quizlet to learn foreign language vocabulary with Suzette Laporte-Ayo Quizlet is a free online resource and app that has quizzes and games for many different subjects. In this podcast, Suzette Laporte-Ayo, Spanish teacher at FundaFunda Academy, explains her unique way of using Quizlet for Spanish vocabulary study. Her method will […]

How to select online classes for your children

Episode 24: How to select online classes for your children 1. Cost you get what you pay for (live classes, graded classes will cost more) refund policies? 2. Synchronous / Asynchronous Synchronous classes are usually live and students watch a live stream. Good for students who like structure. Example: True North Homeschool Academy. Asynchronous classes […]

5 Ways Homeschool Parents Can Use Trello

Episode 23: 5 Ways homeschool parents can use Trello with Brittany Joiner Our guest in today’s show is Brittany Joiner. She is a self-confessed Trello enthusiast who in her spare time organizes local Trello events and blogs for Trello. Link on Trello’s blog to Brittany and her articles Find local meetups of Trello enthusiasts near […]

Techie Alternatives to Written Reports

Episode 22: Techie Alternatives to Written Reports Benefits to using techie alternatives to written reports Although students definitely need to know how to do a written book report or research paper, there are other ways to see what your child has learned. And there are benefits to mixing it up. 3 major benefits: techie assignments […]

Free Graphic Creation Tools

Episode 21: Free Graphic Creation Tools The free tools mentioned in this episode are: Canva (Hear the story of how this software came about on How I Built this with Guy Raz) Adobe Spark Google Drawings Pixlr (photo editor) Easel.ly (infographics) Find free icons to use in your graphics projects at The Noun Project. Show […]

Free Video Creation Tools

Episode 20: Free Video Creation Tools The free tools mentioned in this episode are: Windows Moviemaker / iMovie, if they are already installed on a computer Keynote and Powerpoint, if they are already installed on a computer, can be exported as a movie file Adobe Spark Video Example from a FundaFunda Academy US History class […]

How tech can help you homeschool when you travel

Episode 19: How tech can help you homeschool when you travel Modern technology makes it far easier to homeschooling when you travel than it was for me when we traveled around the world about 11 years ago with our 4 children. What devices are good for traveling and homeschooling? Chromebooks – take a flash drive […]

Tech skills teens need before they graduate

Episode 18: Tech skills teens need before they graduate 1. Computer basics Saving / Copying / Uploading files How to take a screenshot Typing skills Troubleshooting 2. Familiarity with different types of software Slideshow (Google Slides, Prezi) Documents (Google Docs, Word) Spreadsheets (Google Sheets / Excel) Video creation (iMovie, Windows Moviemaker, screencasting software) Graphic creation […]

Classtools – Online Educational Fun

Episode 17: Classtools – Online Educational Fun In today’s episode we will explore some of the fun resources on the website Classtools. Our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy enjoys using the free Classtools resources in many of their online classes and web-based unit studies. Resources for creative assignments Fakebook – create a “fake” book page complete with […]

Free Online Geography Games

Episode 16: Free Online Geography Games Our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy offers online high school world geography classes as well as web-based unit studies for 4th – 8th grade on North America, South America, and Poland. In addition, they sell inexpensive Geography printable games. Here are the 6 free online geography games mentioned in this episode: […]

Finding, tracking and winning scholarships

Episode 15: Finding, tracking and winning scholarships 1. Finding Scholarships * Use Scholarship Search Engines My favorite scholarship search engines: Unigo Moolah Spot The University Network Other scholarship search engines: Peterson’s, Fastweb, Cappex, Collegeboard, Scholarships.com * Scholly App * Local school websites * Google search – “scholarship” + major / hobby / achievement etc * […]

Digital Breakouts

Episode 14: Digital Breakouts —> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy‘s classes and web-based unit studies for Spring 2019. What are Digital Breakouts? They are similar to Escape Rooms – just all online! Instead of physical locks, the locks are virtual and you enter the solutions via Google forms. The puzzles are online: videos, jigsaw […]

Techie Family Fun

Episode 13: Techie Family Fun —> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy’s web-based unit studies and online high school classes. They all utilize technology to enhance the lessons and also include techie projects. These games allow your kids to be on their devices – but still participating in family games. “Guess the song” Use Alexa […]

Tech Toys and Games

Episode 12: Tech Toys and Games —> Check out our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy’s Scratch Christmas Coding Contest. This contest is for those who can’t program in Scratch yet, as well as for those who can. There are 2 different divisions, and new programmers can learn along with video tutorials as part of their entrance fee […]

How to introduce your kids to programming

Episode 11: How to introduce your kids to programming Why is it necessary for children to learn to code? 1. This is where the future lies. “Career track” jobs which need coding skills pay $22,000 per year more than jobs that don’t. Half of the jobs in the top income quartile (>$57,000 per year) are […]

Christmas Shopping the Techie Way

Episode 10: Christmas Shopping the Techie Way 1. Throughout the year collect ideas in Evernote 2. Get your family to create wishlists (Pinterest, Amazon, Google docs/sheets) 3. If you need more ideas Pinterest Searching with specific keywords eg “Gifts for Horse lovers” Blogs: for example, our sponsor Fundafunda Academy has a post on 25 Fun […]

10 Techie Tools I Am Grateful For

Episode 9: 10 Techie Tools I Am Grateful For 1. Offline maps I usually use Google maps, select the area and download. 2. Portable Charger Here’s the one I use: EasyAcc Slim 10000 mAh Power Bank 3. Podcasts One of my favorites is Planet Money. If you are listening to this online and don’t know […]

5 Techie Ways to Organize Your Homeschool

Episode 8: 5 Techie Ways to Organize your Homeschool 1. Google Drive Google Drive is an online filing system. Listen to episodes 2, 3 and 4 for more detail on how to use it to organize your homeschool Our sponsor, FundaFunda Academy offers 2 classes that teach about Google Drive and the associated apps. They […]

Homeschooling with Google Slides

Episode 7: Homeschooling with Google Slides Google Slides offers all benefits of Google Drive apps like easy collaboration and access anywhere you have wifi. Listen to episode 2 on Google Drive for more info on all the Google Drive apps. Some features of Google Slides Google Drive does have fewer features than many of the […]

Homeschooling with Google Forms

Episode 6: Homeschooling with Google Forms Google Forms is great for moms (and dads) to use it to create self-graded quizzes and for surveys. You could use it to collect responses to questions like “what field trip your homeschool group might most want to go on”, and “which date works best”. But it is even […]

A Techie History Contest

Episode 5: A Techie History Contest   National History Day is one of my favorite contests because it combines 2 things I love – history and technology. Our show sponsor, FundaFunda Academy also combines these two in their web-based unit studies on World War 2. These are delivered online, use online resources and incorporate techie […]

Homeschooling with Google Docs

Episode 4: Homeschooling with Google Docs   If you are new to Google Drive be sure to listen to episodes 2 (Homeschooling with Google Drive) and 3 (Homeschooling with Google Sheets) which will give some context to what is covered in this episode – Homeschooling with Google Docs. Google Docs is a spreadsheet program and […]

Homeschooling with Google Sheets

Episode 3: Homeschooling with Google Sheets Google Sheets is one of the Google Drive apps and if you aren’t familiar with all the benefits of those apps, listen to my previous episode. In this episode, you will learn some of the applications for Google sheets in your homeschool. Google Sheets is more limited than many […]

Homeschooling with Google Drive

Episode 2: Homeschooling with Google Drive In this episode, you will learn what Google Drive is, why you should be using it and how to use it in your homeschool. What is Google Drive?   Google Drive is essentially an online filing system. In addition, it is integrated with a number of apps which makes […]

Introducing the Homeschooling with Technology Podcast

Welcome to episode 1 of the Homeschooling with Technology podcast. My name is Meryl van der Merwe and I am a South African. My father bought us a personal computer when I was a teen and I both gamed on it and learned to program. I went to college to get a B.A.  but during […]

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