Monday, September 19, 2011

Homeschooling Questionnaire

Fuel for this homeschooling momma!

Melissa at Bugs, Knights, and Turkeys in the Yard tagged me for this homeschooling questionnaire--thanks for including me! Anyway, I'm very late posting my responses, so I'll just get right to it...

One homeschooling book you have enjoyed:

Do I have to name just one? Not possible.

The first book any new homeschooler should read is Take a Deep Breath--You Can Do This! by Terrie Lynn Bittner. I can't begin to express how much that book helped me when we were just starting out.

Once you have boosted your confidence and are ready for some inspiration, you must read Free Range Learning: How Homeschooling Changes Everything by Laura Grace Weldon.

Other favorites: You Can Teach Your Child Successfully by Ruth Beechick, The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas edited by Linda Dobson, and What's Math Got to Do with It? by Jo Boaler.

One resource you wouldn't be without:

My laptop and an internet connection. Is that too obvious?

I could spend all day blog-hopping and collecting wonderful ideas from other homeschooling families. In fact, I did just that several times during the summer. I don't have that kind of time now, but I still frequently stay up waaaay too late and visit my blog buddies.

Oh, yeah, and so the kids can do research, too.

Kitten Laptop
This isn't actually my laptop, but how cute!

If that answer seems lame, I'll name something else: my local group. There is nothing like a group of supportive, friendly people to keep a homeschooling momma sane. We do field trips, co-op classes, game nights, playdates, teacher nights, you name it. Can't imagine homeschooling without them!

One resource you wish you'd never bought:

Hmm... Even when something isn't a good fit for us, I still usually manage to use it in at least some capacity, even if it's just for practice or getting ideas. Trying something out and finding that it doesn't work is always a learning experience, and it gets us that much closer to what does work.

That being said, we made a very expensive mistake last year. We decided to get a computer for the kids. It was going to be the school computer, and it would be just for the kids' stories, educational software and websites, and typing practice.

Now, I lovelovelove my Mac, but obviously, that's a bit of a budget stretch for a classroom computer. Instead, we bought a lower-end model from the brand that rhymes with mow-shee-bah.

Also not actually my laptop. But I've been tempted...

What a total waste of money. It's been to the Geek Squad twice now, and it still won't accept software. Or it pretends to download it, and the next time you try to use it, it's like you never loaded it. The screen is impossible to read at any angle, the battery holds a charge for about five minutes, the cheap plastic keyboard rattles every time you type on it, and it occasionally shuts down without warning and for no apparent reason.

Needless to say, the kids do all their computer searches, games, and typing practice on my computer. I practically have to make an appointment just to post on this blog!

One resource you enjoyed last year:

Last year was my first time to use I liked it a lot, especially for math practice games and worksheets. This year, I'm also using and

One resource you will use next year:

We'll be starting Latin in January, and we're planning to use Lively Latin. I'm looking forward to it! I'll let you know how it goes.

One homeschooling resource you would like to buy:

Pretty much everything from Beautiful Feet or Acorn Naturalists! Or maybe this...

I can think of sooooo many ways to use this organizer. I'm thinking: math games, country studies, animal-of-the-month, etc. The top bar is a little white board surface so you can label the files. Neato!

One resource you wish existed:

The perfect history curriculum. We're inventing one as we go. If it's good enough, we'll share!

One homeschool catalog you enjoy reading:

All of them.

One homeschool website you use regularly:

Enchanted Learning, abcteach, TeacherFileBox, At Home Science, wikipedia. And homeschooling blogs!

I'm supposed to tag some other bloggers out there, and to be honest, I always hate having to pick favorites! I have so many!

So...if you are reading this and would like to participate: Tag! You're It!

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