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Tips for Homeschool Music Class

mother and son with headset looking at touch pad

Tips for Homeschool Music Class for Parents who Aren’t Musically Inclined

While supplemental materials and the internet offer homeschooling parents additional resources and aid, there are just some skills that require expertise to teach. Take music – if you don’t play the flute, teaching your child to play the flute will be, to say the least, challenging. Thankfully, while teaching an instrument or using one in teaching music can be a tremendous asset, it isn’t the only way that homeschool teachers can explore the subject with their students. If you want to incorporate music into your homeschool routine, but are not musically inclined, consider how the following ways can help you do so without scrambling to learn an instrument.

Music history

Each genre of music has its own history, often connected to larger social issues and cultural contexts. A lesson or two on jazz, for example, can easily be connected to New Orleans’ history or the Civil Rights Movement. Likewise, delving into the history of punk rock can be a window into the considerable social upheaval that occurred during the 1970s and 80s.

Music is fundamentally a form of communication, and it is full of stories and metaphors that directly address the time and environment in which it was written. By listening to and reading about certain songwriters, musicians, or bands, homeschooled students can gain a deeper appreciation of music while also connecting it to its larger social and cultural context.

Online tutorials and supplemental materials

While you may not be able to play an instrument, many people can – and a lot of them have online videos. A quick search can bring up an endless variety of tutorials or lessons on how to play an instrument. Moreover, there are many online supplemental materials that can help your children learn the value of playing an instrument, even though you aren’t the one that is directly teaching them.

Songwriting and structure

Genres like folk, blues, and country often are narrative-like in their presentation. These styles offer a fantastic opportunity to explore the ways that songwriting and structure contribute to the overall experience of music. Much like creative writing, songwriting and structuring relies on the use of language, syllable placement, and storytelling in order to communicate something to an audience. Instead of focusing on the instrumental aspects of music, try focusing on the lyrical and narrative aspects, which can help students gain an appreciation for music while also expanding their understanding of how music is constructed and performed.

Exploring the importance of sound

So you don’t know how to play piano or guitar – but you probably do know how to bang on a stock pot. Fundamentally, music is about patterns, rhythm, and sounds, all of which can be made with something as simple as your hand on a table.

While it may not always sound pleasing to your ears, carefully orchestrated noise can be a fun and effective way to teach children about the very basic elements of music. Instead of worrying about sounding professional, spend some time exploring the sounds that certain things make when put together. A wooden spoon against a sauce pan sounds quite a bit different than a broom being swept across the floor; now it’s up to you to teach your student why that is.

David White is a contributing writer for, the world’s largest global marketplace for finding independent tutors.


Back to Homeschool: A Guide for Parents… Who are Teachers.

It’s here. The time of year when homeschooling parents anticipate what lies ahead with a tiny sense of trepidation, but a whole lot of optimism. Whether you’ve been in the homeschooling business for many years, or about to start your very first year, there’s always one surefire thing that will get the year up and rolling for you and your children… preparedness.

Now, you know better than anyone what works for you and your family, but here are some tips we here at think will help to get the homeschool year off to a good start.


  1. Organize and clean – starting with a clean slate helps put you and your child in the right frame of mind. Say farewell to resources from last year you no longer need; file away the schoolwork you need to hold on to; and then take a deep breath and step forward into a new year. Safe in the knowledge that everything is precisely where it should be. Well, at least for the moment.


  1. Do your homework. Look, we won’t send you back to school here, but it’s crucial that before the year begins, you check your state requirements. Ensure you are in compliance and keep track of anything you might need to record or submit.


  1. Reflect. Prepare. Set Goals. Take a retrospective look back on the year gone by… what would you have done differently? What really worked for your child? What didn’t work so well? Then bearing those facts in mind, go ahead and set a vision for your child – have an idea of where you want them to be by year’s end.


  1. Plan, plan, and then plan some more. We can’t say it enough. Draw up schedules and lay out the daily work for both your family and your child – choose books to cover, plan assignments, and integrate activities to help support your child’s learning. This can often be a lot of work (and we all know changes will happen!) but you’ll thank yourself later when you’re juggling children at different stages of learning, multiple assignments, and day to day life.


  1. Remember, your homeschool won’t be like others. Nor will it be like the public school down the road. Or that private school you’ve heard so much about. Do away with that idea and come to the realization that you know your children better than anyone else. You are in the advantageous position of having the freedom to customize learning to each child. That, on its own, is completely worth it. Even if that wonderfully neat path to education you’d always envisioned never quite comes to fruition.


  1. Find your people. You’re not alone on your mission to navigate the often wild and always thrilling world that is homeschool education. There are so many options available to homeschooling parents and their children – co-op, field trips with friends, a play-date or two, a local homeschooling support group. Be sure to get some dates in the calendar early on in the year and have fun events that everyone can look forward to.


  1. Ring the bell. So to speak. Mark the start of the new schooling year with something special. Whether you say ‘Back to School’, ‘Not Back to School’, or ‘Back to Homeschool’, make sure you make it a fun and memorable event for your kids. Who knows, maybe it will even become an annual tradition?


  1. Be flexible. It sounds so easy, doesn’t it? But often it’s this concept that’s so hard to come to terms with! Life events happen, there’s no preventing that; and some curriculum just won’t work for your child, no matter how hard you try. Each child is completely unique – some kids won’t get math. Some won’t get science. Some won’t get history. That’s just how it is… Roll with it!


  1. It’s not all academics. It’s about relationships too. Bear in mind, you are not only a teacher, but also a parent. Try not to get so wrapped up on building skills and knowledge to the point where the fun of learning begins to escape both you and your child.


  1. HAVE FUN. No matter where you are on the homeschool trajectory, Year 1 or Year 10, you’re getting a fresh start. A chance to try new things. Take that chance and turn it into something great with your child. is dedicated to helping homeschoolers easily discover the curriculum and resources that best fit with each child. Partnering together with homeschooling families as they work to meet their educational goals, CBD offers over 50,000 homeschool resources for grades PreK-12, including curricula, workbooks, living books, and resources for all styles and methods of homeschooling. To learn more, visit, call a homeschool specialist at 1-800-788-1221, or email

Working and Homeschooling

Filed under: Daily News,Educational Adventures — Tags: — dailynews @ 4:00 am


Working and Homeschooling


“I want to homeschool, but I need to work.”

Is it really true that working parents cannot homeschool? Many working-and-homeschooling families challenge this assumption every single day. It can be quite a challenge, but many families manage to do it successfully. How?

Consider all opportunities for flexibility in your work

The more flexibility you have, the more smoothly you will be able to manage the demands of homeschooling. Some work situations require regular hours but may be adaptable to working all or part of the time from home. Others allow for significant flexibility in when, where, and even how much work is done.

Flexibility may not be something your employer routinely offers, but a thoughtful proposal might change the status quo. If your current work is inflexible, consider a job change. If change is not possible, don’t despair! There are many ways to make working-and-homeschooling work.

In families with two working parents, it may be possible for parents to adjust their working hours so that one parent is home whenever the other is working. You might divide the responsibility for homeschooling equally, or one parent might take primary responsibility for education while the other takes more responsibility in other areas.

Single parents who work can still homeschool. If your work is done entirely at home, and if there is a good fit between your child’s ability to be independent on one hand and the needs of your job on the other, you may be able to multitask throughout the day. Whether or not this is successful will depend largely on your temperament and that of your child.

If the needs of your job and the needs of your child are too much to manage at once, or if your job takes place away from home and you cannot bring your child along, you might piece together a scenario that includes time for learning with a parent or another adult.

Be flexible with your expectations about how you will homeschool.

Homeschooling can happen anytime, anywhere. There is no rule that says homeschooling must take place during school hours or at a desk. Focused, supported learning activities can happen before parents head off to work in the morning, after they return in the evening, or on the weekends.

One of the most wonderful benefits of homeschooling is that students can learn the same things in less time than they would in public school. Homeschooling, especially if it is done one-on-one or with siblings who are at the same or a similar learning level, can be very efficient. If you plan to devote a portion of the day to helping each of your children with bookwork, how much time would you need? What time of day is your child the most focused and receptive to learning? What kind of learner is your child, and how can you help make learning most efficient for him or her?

For some homeschooling families, a rigorous, detailed curriculum is the best choice. Others have the time and drive to piece together a carefully selected, eclectic combination of materials. When your time and attention are already stretched, you might find it easiest to use a comprehensive all-in-one program, such as Oak Meadow’s full curriculum package. Or you might find that a very relaxed approach to learning allows your children to happily absorb the basics and then pursue their passions. Don’t hesitate to shift gears if you or your child are stressed or unhappy with your current approach. When you find something that works, celebrate and stick with it!

Assess your child’s capacity for independence and make intentional use of it

How old is your child (or children)? How much direct attention, supervision, and care does he or she need? When is your child happiest to accept guidance from others, and when will only a parent do?

Young children will need a direct caregiver all or most of the time. Many caregivers are open to supporting this age group in gentle learning activities involving nature, art, handwork, storytelling, and play-based exploration. You may need to make suggestions or provide materials. With a thoughtful plan, your care provider can become a homeschooling ally.

Preteens may be able to tolerate being left to themselves for periods of time while you are working at home, but there will be limits to their independence. They may need or want to engage periodically even if you are nearby. With your child’s input, develop ways to connect and reconnect with each other as needed while you work.

Older children and teens may be able to handle all or some of their homeschooling work on their own. Some subjects or activities might require more regular support than others. You might work in short bursts with scheduled breaks so that your child knows when to wait and when he or she can have your attention again.

If you have a wide range of ages in your family, perhaps an older child could be engaged to help a younger child or children while you are working at home. Carefully plan ahead to set them up with suitable assignments or activities. When you are not working, your attention can shift to the younger children while the older ones focus on their own learning.

Remember why

Families who choose homeschooling invariably have compelling reasons that make it worthwhile. Why are you working and homeschooling? What would be different if you made a different choice? Would those differences be acceptable to you? Identify the motivating factors in your situation and remind yourself of them whenever you need a boost.

Working while homeschooling can be a formidable challenge, even with children who are older and fairly independent. For many parents who do both, the combination is not really ideal. But when other options are unacceptable or even more challenging, it can be worthwhile to do what is necessary to make it work. If you choose working-and-homeschooling, you are in good company.


Amanda Witman is Oak Meadow’s social media coordinator as well as a musician, gardener, lifelong learner, and homeschooling mother of four. Oak Meadow provides flexible, creative homeschooling curriculum for grades K-12.


Beginner’s Homeschooling Steps



Beginner’s Homeschooling Steps – Considering Homeschooling? Take the 5 Step Challenge!

This is a guest blog post written by Carreen Schroeder

If You Are Considering Homeschooling Your Children, Take The 5-Step Challenge!

Step One:


Make a very comprehensive list ofwhy you wish to homeschool your children. Don’t sugar coat it. Be truly honest with yourself and your family, no holds back. Now step back and read your list over and over again. If, after you have sincerely dissected the reasons behind your decision, you are more determined than ever to begin homeschooling, then roll up your sleeves because you are ready for Step Two!

Step Two:


I hear people all the time confess that they are nervous and worried, fearing they do not have the skills to homeschool. Like anything else, homeschooling is often an entirely new world for parents and often, when we are confronted with something new, we panic, or feel intimidated.

If you are passionate about parenting, then you most definitely will succeed in the homeschooling community! My best advice is to jump in with both feet, take the plunge and within no time at all you will realize how capable you truly are at meeting and exceeding your and your children’s expectations!

Step Three:


Let’s face it – children are our teachers on so many levels. If we attune our senses to that of our children’s, we will come to learn all we need to know through this unique relationship. For the most part, traditional classroom education already provides the plan and the structure. There is no more time or space left for the children to express their interests. They simply learn what they are told to learn and must learn it, in the manner that is provided for them.

In an open-minded homeschool setting, something amazing happens: The once programmed child, awaiting to be told what to do and how to do it, suddenly awakens!

When children realize that we value their input, the real magic begins. They suddenly switch gears and begin to express their interests, their desires, their dreams and aspirations. THIS becomes the basis, the foundation for your curriculum.

Believe in your children and watch how your world unfolds right before your very eyes!

Step Four:


You are now well on your way to a successful and fulfilling homeschooling lifestyle! Before you get too far along however, you will need to know the homeschooling legal rights and responsibilities in your state. You will also need to connect with your school district to begin the necessary paperwork (if required) but don’t get overwhelmed!  There is a lot of information on the internet.  You’ll find samples of Letter of Intents, Individualized Home Instruction Plans and Quarterly Reports, coupled with the fact that you now BELIEVE IN YOURSELF, you will be more than capable of managing all the necessary homeschooling paperwork!  And your local homeschooling community can definitely help you!

Step Five:


Now that you believe in yourself and in your family and your paperwork is in order, it is time to see what the homeschooling world has to offer! Start an internet search of your local area and within no time at all, you will find homeschooling support groups all around you. With a little research, you will find a homeschooling group that shares many of your and your family’s interests – Science and Nature, Swim and Gym programs, Art, French, Spanish, Math – the list literally goes on and on. You will find yourself having to turn some events down as there is so much from which to choose!

Carreen Schroeder of New York Adventures in Homeschooling, has been a certified teacher in Ontario and in New York State since 1999, holding an Ms.Ed in Elementary Education, a B.A. in French Language and Literature and a Specialist in Special Education. She has been homeschooling her youngest of three daughters since 2012 and is passionate about assisting homeschooling families with free resources and homeschooling services. Visit Carreen at:

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This is a guest blog post from

They were named as a Top Back to Homeschool Resource by Readers.


One way to secure your child a top paying job in the future!

Parents are constantly asking us two important questions:

  1. Why should my child learn to code?
  2. What makes the best place to learn to code?

We’d like to answer these questions for you right now!

For those unfamiliar with the term, “coding” is simply the ability to use computer languages to build software applications and perform complex calculations.

The past few years has seen the emergence of a global ‘Learn to Code’ movement promoting the idea that every child should learn how to code at school. Countries like the UK and Australia have gone as far as making coding a mandatory part of every child’s education, just like Math’s and English.

As a homeschool parent, you are charged with the responsibility of deciding whether to include ‘coding’ in your child’s curriculum. This decision is especially daunting if you are unfamiliar with the subject. So, in order to help you make an informed decision, we want outline four key reasons why your child should learn to code.

  1. Code is everywhere

The electronic games, devices and appliances we use on a daily basis are all powered by code and created by people who know how to code. In a world where almost everything has a digital component or is somehow digitally mediated, knowing how to code is more valuable than ever.

As Steve Jobs explained, everything around you is “made up by someone who was no smarter than you.” By learning to code, your child will unlock their power to build apps that have a massive positive impact on people around the world.

       2. Lots of High Paying Jobs

The software development industry is a very strong career option with jobs in this field among the highest paying and most satisfactory. In the USA, computer programming jobs are growing at 2x the national average, and it is predicted that by the year 2020 there will be 1.4 million new computing jobs and only 400,000 computer science graduates to fill them.

With such high demand and high salaries, it’s definitely worth gauging your child’s interest in learning to code.

       3. Gives you an advantage in any industry

Even for people who don’t enter the Information Technology (IT) industry, there is growing range of jobs where coding skills are becoming increasingly valuable, including graphic designers, engineers, scientists, marketers, business people and even jobs in the finance industry. In these jobs, people who know how to code have a big advantage over their colleagues who don’t.

Learning to code will give your child an advantage no matter what industry they end up in.

       4. Improves Problem Solving skills

Coding is fundamentally a problem solving activity. Whether it’s fixing code that has errors, or designing an innovative app, creative problem solving is critical.


At this point it should be clear of the value coding can provide in your child’s homeschool curriculum. But you may be apprehensive about teaching coding if you have never learnt to code yourself! Thankfully, there are lots of online resources to help you and your child learn how to code together, which leads us to the second common question parents ask us:

What makes the best place for my child to learn to code?

We make learning fun and effective!

During his PhD research, Code Avengers founder Michael Walmsley uncovered 12 key principles for an optimal online learning experience. By applying these principles, our team of expert educators are developing a learning platform that makes learning as fun and effective as possible.

Code Avengers provides:

  • Students learn how to build apps, games and websites with 150+ hours of interactive lessons.
  • Lessons are designed for complete beginners 12 years and older, but have been successfully completed by many 8-11 year olds.
  • Parents get live updates of student progress.
  • We give great support, so parents don’t require any prior knowledge.

To learn more about how Code Avengers can help you to make coding apart of your child’s curriculum and how to get access to our exclusive risk free trial visit  You have nothing to lose but you child has everything to gain.


What is T.E.E.?

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What is T.E.E.?

And why your 7th, 8th or 9th grader must have it!

Many people don’t know what TEE is and why it’s a CRITICAL part of EVERY 7th, 8th or 9th graders education.

Here is a brief overview of TEE:

What is Technology and Engineering Education (TEE)? 

TEE has been part of a hands-on, minds-on curriculum offered in high schools and middle schools everywhere for nearly one hundred years.

In the early 20th century it was taught as “Industrial Arts”, reflecting the industrial society.

Today it’s taught as Technology and Engineering Education (TEE) with a powerful curriculum reflecting our modern and sophisticated technological era.

TEE is a critical part of the recent S.T.E.M (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) initiative.  TEE is the T and the E of STEM but the fact is TEE is STEM because is also includes the science and the math in a hands-on applied, real-world context.

What do students learn in modern TEE classes?

In a word, it is about INNOVATION! Students learn how innovators think and how to apply technology and engineering to create solutions to problems facing society.

TEE is a critical part of the recent S.T.E.M (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) initiative.  TEE is the T and the E of STEM but the fact is TEE is STEM because is also includes the science and the math in a hands-on applied, real-world context.

What do students learn in modern TEE classes?

In a word, it is about INNOVATION! Students learn how innovators think and how to apply technology and engineering to create solutions to problems facing society.

But why is it called Technology and Engineering education?  Is it primarily for students who want to be engineers?


TEE does help fill the engineer shortage we now have, but that’s not its primary goal.  The reason the word engineer is in the name is this:

Engineers are the professionals who are most closely associated with technology.  They are professional innovators.  If you want to learn about innovation and technology, there is no better profession for students to study.

target3 primary learning targets of TEE:


Learning target: Technological Literacy

The first job of Technology and Engineering Education is to help your student become technologically literate.  The term “technological literacy” refers to one’s ability to use, manage, evaluate, and understand technology.

  •  A technologically literate person knows what technology is, how it is created, and how it shapes and is shaped by society.
  •  They are comfortable with and objective about technology.  They are not afraid of it, nor obsessed with it.
  •  They are confident consumers who can better evaluate products and make more intelligent buying decisions.
  •  They have some technical abilities and can use their powers of innovative to design and build things, to solve technical problems and to help sustain a strong economy.

Because technology is everywhere, technological literacy benefits everyone.  Corporate executives, brokers and investment analysts, journalists, teachers, doctors, nurses, farmers and homemakers will all be able to perform their jobs better if they are technologically literate and adaptable.

Technological literacy is much more that just knowledge about computers. It’s about having knowledge about the nature, behavior, power and consequences of technology from a real world perspective.

Learning target: Academic performance


Did you know that students who take these types of courses get better grades in subjects like math, science and literature?

The second reason these types of courses are important is because they create greater interest in academics.  Statistically, students who take these types of courses have higher graduation rates and higher nation wide GPA’s.  And, they are better college and career ready!

Learning target: Purpose


Technology and engineering education helps create Purpose – Did you know in 2014 one of the top questions asked on google was “Who am I?”

We have a crisis of identity.  People need to know who they are, and what makes them come alive.

For many students the study of technology, innovation and engineering is what they feel they born to do.  They are innovators at heart and nothing is more fulfilling to them.

The problem: To many student don’t have experiences like these to help wake up the innovator inside.  Too many students don’t know who they are…they are innovators!

Middle school years are especially important and are meant for exploration, in the hopes that something will resonate inside a students heart as an signal to them about their natural abilities and desires.  Desire reveals design, design reveals destiny or purpose.

Students who know who they are when they enter the job market aren’t just employed, they feel deployed with a sense of purpose.

I love my job text

TEE – It’s for everyone!

So, helping create a student who is technologically literate, has hi academic performance and lives with purpose means that Technology and Engineering Education really is for everyone!


Did you know in the U.S. there are over 35,000 of TEE educators teaching in public schools?  But why don’t private and home school students have access to us?  You do now!

      CLICK HERE to see T.E.E. course offerings for your 7th, 8th, or 9th grader     

*Chosen by readers as a Top Back to Home School Resource.Back-To-Homeschool-Awards(sm)

Click the links below for more information about Technology and Engineering Education and why it’s important for ALL students:

Beyond the Classroom with Online Learning

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Did you know that K12 was chosen by readers as a Top Back to Homeschool Resource?  You can find the awards here, and sample their courses here. Interested in’s Back to Homeschool e-magazine?  Then just click here

We’re having an entire Back to Homeschool Event!


Taking Students Beyond the Classroom with Online Learning

By Melissa King, Ph.D

Most of us are familiar with the natural high we get when super-excited about something. Similar to an adrenaline rush, our bodies react with a sudden burst of energy and our senses are on alert. This happens to me with learning opportunities that intrigue and challenge me. As an educator, I strive to provide student engagement that will ignite that same fire inside, motivating learners to dig in and charge full speed ahead.

How to accomplish that? For starters, consider everyday learning experiences. Here are some examples that encourage people of any age to get on board with learning:

  • You and your child visit Niagara Falls, and he is amazed and exhilarated by the awesome sights and sounds, which he captures on his smartphone.
  • You and your family go to the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, and everyone is captivated by the amazing multimedia and interactive displays.
  • At the movies, you watch The Theory of Everything, about Physicist Stephen Hawking, and you’re so fascinated that you immediately order his biography to read more about him.

These are real-world experiences that inspire us to learn more, and a toolbox of digital technology can help us take advantage of these exhilarating moments.

Today’s educational offerings go far beyond the traditional brick-and-mortar environment, expanding the “when, where, and how” of learning experiences. Technology tools give us powerful new ways to expand what we see, hear, interact with, and enjoy. When incorporated into online courses, these tools deliver dynamic learning that meets students where they are and takes them where they need to go. But consider this: online courses go even further, propelling students with additional information, inviting them to push their cognitive capacity in new directions. That’s the magic of online learning!

How does this play out? Let’s explore a realistic scenario. Suppose Amelia is enrolled in online life science such as the course available from K12. Before she begins, she and her parent look at the syllabus to understand what she’ll be learning so she can be prepared when she begins. She can also get a sense of all the hands-on materials offered by K12 because learning online doesn’t mean she’ll be stuck in front of a computer all day.

And because she’ll be learning without a teacher, guided by K12’s award-winning curriculum, she can set her own pace and progress through the course in the way that best suits her needs. Amelia logs in to the course, which gives her immediate access to the lessons, activities, e-book, instructional resources, and more. Right away, Amelia gets organized. As she experiences the content with interactive animations and video clips, Amelia’s interest in life science topics intensifies.

How does this differ from sitting in a high school classroom? Since Amelia is bright and conscientious, she moves through lessons at a rapid pace. Without time spent waiting for other students to keep up, Amelia has time for in-depth investigation of topics that interest her. Using recommended resources and web links in the course, as well as her own online searches for related information, Amelia goes the extra mile to apply her skills and build knowledge. She visits websites about living systems, locates recent research reports, and views detailed graphics that illustrate key concepts. All this is at her fingertips. As she studies, Amelia is super-charged. Given the opportunity, she picks up the ball and runs with it, demonstrating initiative to pursue what has captured her imagination.

Where’s the magic? First of all, Amelia is in charge of her own learning. She engages with the course at a pace that’s right for her, she has the freedom to explore more, and she’s motivated to be productive and creative. Secondly, she appreciates the anytime, anyplace availability of content, so coursework can fit into her full schedule. Most importantly, Amelia is excited and energized about learning!

Online learning is a “smart solution,” according to Susan Patrick, president and chief executive officer of the International Association for K–12 Online Learning (iNACOL), Students who engage with online learning perform better, on average, than students taking the same course in face-to-face environments. Student-centered learning is a win-win for everyone. The flexibility and cost-effectiveness of online learning make it a great option for many learners. No wonder more than two-thirds of today’s learners say they want to use technology to support their own learning.


Homeschool Planet


Did you know that  Homeschool Planet was chosen by readers as a Top Back to Homeschool Resource?  You can find the awards here, and a free trial for the product here. Interested in’s Back to Homeschool e-magazine?  Then just click here

We’re having an entire Back to Homeschool Event!


Learn the Secret to an Organized Home and Homeschool!

Is your life crazy busy? We know what you’re thinking, “Of course my life is busy – We are a homeschool family!” What if we told you there was a planner that could manage the crazy, organize the busy, and keep up with you and your homeschool? is

Homeschool Planet is a simple-to-use yet full-featured planner, designed by homeschoolers for homeschoolers. Homeschool Planet, from the Homeschool Buyers Co-op, combines the power of a computer with the convenience of paper to give you the tools to manage and organize your home and homeschool.

Thousands of homeschoolers have made the switch to Homeschool Planet and are raving about the features of this powerful planner and the changes it has made to the way they homeschool. Still unsure about making the switch from paper and pencil or other online planner? We invite you to try Homeschool Planet absolutely FREE for 30 days in your homeschool!

We know the struggles you face every day with managing not only your home, but also your homeschool. At the Homeschool Buyers Co-op, we aim to equip homeschool families with the tools to make this amazing journey of homeschooling just a little bit easier. Are you ready to join thousands of other homeschoolers and start managing your home and homeschool? Start your 30 Day FREE Trial TODAY!

Interested in Joining the Homeschool Buyers Co-op?

You might be wondering, “What does it take to become a Co-op member?” The answer is simple, it just takes you! All you have to do is sign up and you’re ready to begin saving on your back-to-school homeschool curriculum. Simply head over to the Homeschool Buyers Co-op, click the Join Now button, and join over 150,000 families saving on homeschool curriculum every day!

Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have regarding the Co-op. We look forward to having you as a member of the Co-op and serving you through your homeschool journey.

About the Homeschool Buyers Co-op

With over 150,000 families, the Homeschool Buyers Co-op is the world’s largest homeschool co-op and a great source for award-winning, affordable homeschool curriculum. Membership is free and you will part of a Co-op that brings you the greatest homeschool curriculum values on earth.

Acellus Academy

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The Power of Personalized Learning

Acellus is the fastest growing learning system in America. Each subject is taught through video-based lessons featuring some of the most talented teachers in America. Acellus uses Deficiency Diagnostics to find the holes in a student’s understanding and customizes the instruction to fill the gaps in each student’s knowledge.

Help your student excel in their schoolwork, or earn a diploma at home. Learn more at:



Explore Everywhere Culinary Adventures

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Explore Everywhere2 (200 x 150)

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Explore Everywhere Culinary Adventures

As a music teacher who uses engaging songs and activities to introduce young children to global cultures in my program, All Around This World, and also as the father of three (6, 8 and 11), I’m very conscious of the way children develop an appreciation for people and places that are distant from theirs. How do we raise out kids to be “global citizens,” open to difference, eager to explore?

Also, as a human being, I eat. Sometimes up to three meals a day! And my kids eat too, and since I hope they always will, and since one of the tastiest ways to get to know about an unfamiliar culture is to meet it through its food, I’m particularly intent on raising my children to be culinarily curious. Like many children I know, my kids default to the bland — plain pasta, mac and cheese. And, like many children I know, my kids are kids; any food I would introduce “because its good for you,” no matter how yummy, would taste to them exactly like food that is “good for you.”

Instead of forcing far-flung foods on our family, my wife and I have chosen to take a less insistent, longer term approach. Our goal is not to micromanage our kids’ meals in the present, insisting that every lunch box includes a cuisine from each continent, but to enable them to develop a lifelong appreciation for different tastes and an overarching eagerness to explore. We stay active and try foods that are new, but when we do, we focus more on enjoying the experience than any eating one particular meal. We want to create an atmosphere of acceptance, and resist the instinct to arm-twist as we do.

This is a delicate, patient dance. I call it “the long con.”

Is this working? Slowly. Our family’s favorite restaurant has long been an Indian place nearby. My wife and I have brought the kids there for years and everyone in the family feels welcome. Until recently our kids, though claiming to love “Indian food” because we all enjoyed eating there together, would only actually consume copious amounts of rice and bread (naan). Tempted as we were to force-feed anything more exciting my wife and I usually restrained ourselves; a taste here, a taste there, no hard sell. Our hope was that one day the kids’ taste buds would catch up to their appreciation. Not so long ago during one usual family feast our eldest tried a sauce, liked it, and introduced it to her sisters. Now when we go they not only actually eat Indian sauces but also sometimes even try to find tastes that are new. Victory? Sore of. They still fill up on rice and bread. But there’s light at the end of the tunnel…and that tunnel is made of shahi paneer.

At home we aren’t always creative, but when we do try to cook something international and new we try to make it an adventure. Finding the recipe together, shopping for ingredients together, cooking as a form of family fun . . . We hope for success but we don’t rely on it.  When the results are tasty we enjoy them. When the experiment turns out terribly . . . we laugh and break out the mac and cheese.

All Around This World’s online cultural curriculum, Explore Everywhere, approaches culinary adventures as participatory projects. First, we find a recipe that we can actually concoct from ingredients we find in our cupboard. Then, and most important, we cook it together. Lately in class, as we’ve been learning about the music and cultures of Africa, we’ve tried Ugandan chapati and sweet Moroccan couscous. We’ve achieved modest culinary success. But we’ve had 100% fun.

So maybe if you want to help your kids overcome the fear of eating internationally, relax. Forget about the food itself. Make international eating an adventure. Explore somewhere new, have a great time doing it, but don’t put on pressure. Promise the kids that if everyone tries everything and still hates it you’ll stop for pizza on the way home.

Play the long con. Will it work? Who knows. But one the way, we’ll all eat well.


** Jay Sand is the founder and lead teacher of a world cultures and global music program called All Around This World. recently featured his online curriculum, Explore Everywhere, as one of the top resources in our Back to Homeschool guide.

All Around This World: A Global Music and World Cultures Experience for Kids and their Families Website | Twitter @AATWMusic | YouTube | Pinterest | Facebook | Spotify Learn about the world through music everyday, wherever you are. Subscribe to Explore Everywhere!

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