Homeschool Day at The Wild Center

This past May, The Wild Center in Tupper Lake, NY opened its doors to homeschoolers. Thanks to a generous grand from The Landon Family Foundation, homeschool students and their families were able to take advantage of free admission.

Below are some of pictures from our homeschool field trip day. One of the many perks of being a homeschool family is taking a day off from the books every now and then and enjoying the beautiful place that we call home.

indoors at the wild center

Indoors at the Center there is plenty to keep the entire family busy for most of the day. From encounters with live animals to a full theater to exhibits of fish, turtles, and other animal and plant species. There is also a small cafe and a gift shop.

outdoors at the wild center

Outdoors there are trails through the forest, a winding river, a pond, and the Wild Walk. You can walk among the treetops and take a picture in a giant sized eagle’s nest while seeing the Adirondacks from a birds-eye view.

books to share before heading out on your adventure

And, for our family, life isn’t complete without a book recommendation or two!

Some of our favorite books to read before heading out and enjoying nature are listed below. As always, picture books aren’t just for little ones! My older kids enjoy listening as well. I just can’t let them KNOW that I know they are liking them!

(All links are Amazon aff. links)

You almost certainly will get to see turtles on your visit to the Wild Center.
Kate Messner is a family favorite author We love her Ranger in Time series. Over and Under the Pond is another great book of hers.
A 2018 Caldecott Honor Book that Kirkus Reviews calls “a must-read for our times,” A Different Pond is an unforgettable story about a simple event – a long-ago fishing trip.
Teaching
valuable lessons about animals, nature and the environment, the stories feature favorite Burgess characters.

The Lonely Homeschooler

Have you ever wondered if you are causing your children to be forever lonely by homeschooling them? While some siblings get along just great, others seem to be the lone sheep in the family, constantly searching for a companion. A ‘bosom friend’ as Anne Shirley would say.

This article by Melody Lyons was shared to me by a good friend.

20171228_201227.jpg
A siblings ‘girls night’. Painting nails, face masks, hair styles, food and a movie.

In it she addresses every mother’s concern for her children. She affirms what I have been thinking for the past few years, ever since we pulled all of our children from our private Catholic Schools.

Melody begins with:

This article is written primarily for homeschooling parents who wonder if their kids will ever find true, Christ-centered friendships with someone of similar age… and also for those parents who avoid homeschooling because they are afraid for the same reasons. I will spoil the ending for you in this first paragraph but then you still have to read the rest of the post. The answer to your question is: Likely, but not certainly.” >>more…

This is well worth the read and I would love to know your thoughts. Either comment here or head over to my Facebook page.

~ Have a simply happy homeschool day!

Five Simple Things You Can Do Reboot a Bad Homeschool Day

All of us homeschool moms know that being teacher and mom is not an easy job. Some days we just feel like throwing in the towel. But there are ways you can turn that around and be a better homeschool mom.

#1 Read a Book Out Loud

It doesn’t need to be a long book. Simply choose one off the shelf and sit all the children down and read to them. If it’s been a particularly bad day, choose a silly book. Laughter cures many ills. Continue reading “Five Simple Things You Can Do Reboot a Bad Homeschool Day”

Participating with the National String Project

 

Five of our children are participating with the National String Project through Crane School of Music. 

The NSP “mission is to expand string education opportunities in the North Country while providing teaching experiences for university students at the Crane School of Music. Lessons and ensembles are taught by Crane music education majors with the guidance of Crane music faculty.” Continue reading “Participating with the National String Project”

Homeschoolers and the Pizza Hut Book It! Program

Our Book It! Packet arrived today!

If you didn’t already know, homeschoolers are allowed to participate in the Pizza Hut Book It! program.

As the teacher, you set a monthly reading goal for your K-6 student and if they meet the goal they receive a certificate for a free personal pan pizza. It doesn’t get any easier than that!

But, to make it even more easy, Pizza Hut has a resource page for teachers that includes printables, awards, reading prompts and much more. Go to bookitprogram.com/teachers and see what helps they have to offer.

They also are offering free audio books and ebooks to go along with their program. The three that are included for 2017-2018 are Not Normal, Judy Moody and Above World. Go check them out!

bookitbooks
Taken from Book It! Program guide

 

I printed out the monthly log from the website, not only for my K-6 students, but even for the older ones. If they read 20 minutes a day (which is not hard for homeschoolers!) they get to fill in a clock. I will have some kind of incentive for the older ones if they complete their chart also.

I’m always looking for little things like this to keep our homeschool fun. What are some of the extras you do with your kiddos? Comment below and let me know.

~Leslie

How I learned to schedule my homeschool day: See Mystie’s Work the Plan.

 

Homeschooling High School in New York

As many of my fellow NY homeschoolers probably know, homeschool laws for NY State are some of the most tedious and also, in my opinion, unfair homeschool laws on the books. In a nutshell, we are required to not only file a Letter of Intent yearly, but we also need to submit quarterly reports and turn in a year-end report. Every other year, from 4th grade onward, the year-end report must be a standardized test. (See HSLDAs Website)

It was confusing, but I figured it out over time. However, when my children reached high school age, we were introduced to even more stringent and biased rules regarding college entrance in New York for homeschooled students. When I pulled my daughter, Meghan from our local Catholic high school that her and her sisters had been attending she was in 11th grade. She still had a year and a half until graduation. And, at the time, she did not know whether she wanted to attend college or not. So, I homeschooled her, she finished her degree requirements, and I thought that was the end of it.

I was wrong. Continue reading “Homeschooling High School in New York”