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Merry Christmas!

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 9:57 pm

Merry Christmas from all at

Due to the Christmas season, and the fact that I am getting a lot of “out of office notices”, the Daily News will be taking a short break. An article may appear over this “break” on a couple of days, but it will not be a daily event.

I wish you a joyful season and a fantastic New Year.

Susan Harris News Editor

Have Some Fun this Christmas Season

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 7:05 pm

Christmas is in four days. Although the politically correct thing is to say “Happy Holidays”, many still greet each other with “Merry Christmas”. This year, why not learn how to say “Merry Christmas” in the language of your ancestors? Or you could try your hand at an obscured language that few know. It might prove extremely impressive to those around you.

To learn an appropriate greeting in different languages, check out website It starts with Afrikaans and continues through Yugoslavian. A couple of the more obscured ones: Tagalog, Urdu, and Manx, to name a few.

To hear greetings, check out website This will allow you to hear it and copy. There would be no guessing as to how it is suppose to sound.

Through either site, it should present a fun time for the family to learn two or three and share with all they meet. Have fun!

For a discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by: Susan Harris News Editor

New Canadian Study Proves Homeschooling Produces Successful Adults

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 8:50 pm

Canadian Centre for Home Education (CCHE) released a study on December 2, 2009 that reveals that those Canadians who where homeschooled, excel in all areas of adult life. These areas include, but are not limited to, religious observance, civic and community involvement, life satisfaction, and income.

The study compared homeschooled Canadians to their counterparts and found that the homeschooled individuals were more socially engaged. They were also more than twice as likely to perform their civic duty and vote in a federal election. Their income was higher and they were more self-reliant, with many being self-employed. None of those who were homeschooled had government support as their primary income.

Most of the homeschooled Canadians surveyed stated their adult life was better due to the fact they were homeschooled.

There is more in the original article and I highly recommend you go and read it in its entirety (

This is exciting news and it is a great article to have on hand when others question whether homeschooling helps or hurts children as adults. This may also ease the minds of well-meaning family members.

For further discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by:

Susan Harris News Editor

Homeschooler Wins First Place in an Essay Contest

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 7:30 pm

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) announced the winners of this year’s high school essay contest, “Freedom in Academia”, on December 15, 2009. The first place winner was Nathaniel Cornelius.

More than 2,700 students competed in this contest, which awarded scholarships to the first and second place winners. Mr. Cornelius won a $5,000 scholarship.

FIRE sent out invitations in August 2009 to over 11,000 high school across the country. Their website stated the following about the contest: “Students were asked to watch two documentaries on FIRE cases, FIRE in Action: Valdosta State University and Think What We Think… Or Else: Thought Control on the American Campus, and write essays of 700-1,200 words explaining how the universities in the videos abrogated the constitutional rights of their students and betrayed the true purpose of a university.”

Nathaniel’s winning essay was titled “Educational Institutions or Reeducation Camps?”. His article can be read in its entirety, along with the other winners’ essays at the FIRE website. (Link given below)

This is just another example of how homeschool students compare to their public and private school counterparts and peers.

To read the entire article and the essays, please visit the FIRE website at:

Congratulations to Nathaniel for such an accomplishment.

Please remember to send me all your homeschool success stories, no matter how small.

To find more success stories, please contact

Written by: Susan Harris News Editor

Piano Lessons Meets the 21st Century

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 8:47 pm

How would you like your child to take piano lessons? How would you like to have them take piano lessons without ever leaving your home? A homeschool mom is now offering real time piano lessons via the internet.

Melissa, a homeschool mom of three, from Massachusetts, is a piano teacher. She is now offering private piano lessons via the internet in real time. The student would have to have a webcam set up so she could see the piano as the student plays, and the lessons could be weekly or bi-weekly.

This is a great opportunity for anyone with a child that cannot readily go out of the house due to health issues or for those that are located in a more rural area. It could also be a matter of convenience situation as well. There wouldn’t be any gas cost involved nor traffic to fight. You can arrange it around your schedule without having to also plan for travel time.

To investigate this further, please go visit Melissa’s website:

For further discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by:

Susan Harris News Editor

A positive policy change for homeschoolers

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 9:00 pm

The township of East Providence, Rhode Island recently drew up a new policy for homeschoolers. In a remarkable first, they agreed to inform homeschoolers of any potential policy change prior to trying to implement them.

In addition, this new policy allows East Providence homeschoolers to immediately start homeschooling upon written notification to the school system. They also eliminated mandatory meetings with school officials and dropped the requirement for families to explain why they decided to homeschool.

Attendance and evaluations were finally agreed upon after discussion.

This is an excellent example of how the school system and homeschoolers can work together and create policies that are within state law and yet benefits all involved. May other towns and cities follow suit.

To read the full article, please visit

For further discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by:

Susan Harris News Editor

Geminid Meteor Shower happening this month

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 7:11 pm

On December 13th and 14th, the Northern Hemisphere and part of the Southern Hemisphere will have an opportunity to see the Geminids Meteor Shower. Geminids are medium-speed meteors and the display this year should be spectacular as we have a New Moon, so the glow of the moon will not interfere with the view of the shower. Most Geminids do not leave grand tails, however the brighter ones are often colored yellow, green or blue.

The Geminids are considered by many as the most reliable meteor shower as it returns every year in December. They can also produce over 100 meteors per hour. The meteors name is derived because they are near the Gemini constellation.

You can find further information and tips for viewing on the following website:

Just remember as you are viewing this wonderful site, to bundle up. It can be quite cold during the month of December.

For a discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by: Susan Harris News Editor

British Homeschoolers face tougher laws if new bill is passed

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 6:20 pm

The most intrusive and burdensome regulations to be imposed on homeschoolers in an English speaking country, is being present to the British Parliament soon. The bill would give local educational officials total control over whether or not a family would be allowed to homeschool. In addition, the parents would have to have criminal background checks prior to receiving final permission to school their own children.

This bill is based upon recommendations Graham Badman, after releasing a report last this past summer which was accepted by the British government as an authority on this topic.

From the Home School Legal Defense Association’s website, this is what one lawyer stated:

“This bill is breathtaking in its scope and reflects a perverse level of suspicion towards parents who home-educate their children,” says HSLDA Staff Attorney and Director of International Relations Michael Donnelly. “If this bill were to pass, it would be the most restrictive and overbearing law in the English-speaking world. It places total discretion in the hands of local educational officials to determine whether or not they will ‘register’ a home education program and would require criminal background checks for parents before they could begin homeschooling their own children.”

To read the full article, please visit

Remember, we need to keep a careful eye on what happens overseas. There has been a strong tendency among some politicians to follow what the “rest of the world” is doing. Since homeschooling is a huge division among politicians and everyday people, it would not take much for someone to try and take our freedoms here in the United States back away. It wasn’t long ago that homeschooling was a major fight. We could easily return if we don’t keep an eye out.

For further discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by:

Susan Harris News Editor

Why Do You Homeschool?

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 8:50 pm

“Why do you homeschool” or “what would possess anyone to homeschool” are questions that are often asked by others who just don’t understand the full concept of this life-style. This question was addressed in a research survey conducted by the National Household Education Survey Program. Once again, three main reasons were the fore-runners.

The most often answered to the above question was to provide religious and moral instruction. Now, most often people believe that it is the Christian sector that homeschool, but that is not the only group. Other religions, and those who don’t believe in religion, often opt to homeschool to provide a strong foundation in their children’s education incorporating their belief system, to include values.

The second most common reason for homeschooling is concern over the school environment. The public school system has progressed from simple bullying on the playground to dealing with fights, drugs, weapons, and mass shootings. Then we add in concerns over safety with students sexually, and we have a huge mess to contend with. Why would a parent wish to send their child to a war zone?

The third most common reason is the dissatisfaction in the academics of a school system. This includes academics for the average student, those that excel, and even for those that learn uniquely. Many feel that their children are not challenged. This is especially true in the academics for unique learners. Most feel that their child is thrown into a special education class and the school system just deems that their child has an inability to learn, and the parents know differently. Even with those that excel, many feel that their child is being held back. So, they remove their child and take on the responsibility of their children’s education.

There are still multitudes of reasons not touched upon here, but these seem to be the most common year after year.

So, why do you homeschool? Have you ever thought about it? Have you written it down? This would be a good time to do so.

To read the full article, go to

For a discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by: Susan Harris News Editor

The Holiday Season and Homeschooling

Filed under: Daily News — dailynews @ 8:10 pm

This month can be difficult for some homeschoolers as we prepare and participate in celebrations and traditions of our families. There are special events, parties, recitals, Christmas lights to drive by and see, and just unique opportunities in a multiple of arenas.

This is a good time to sit down and re-evaluate what is important to you, your family, your school and life in general. Is it only academics that you wish to pass along to your child or children? Are there traditions that you want your child to continue in their adult lives? Do you want your children to learn that the holiday you celebrate is much more than the media presents? Would you like to take the focus off of “what will I get” to “what can I do/give to others”? Each is a great question to answer as you prepare to celebrate your holiday.

After doing your evaluations, you have a unique opportunity to teach the children any of these points. It doesn’t have to cost a lot of money but it can make a huge difference in their education just the same.

What about making homemade Christmas cards (art), then visiting a nursing home and distributing them to the residents (social skills)? On the same lines, what about cleaning out old toys that are still in good condition (home ec, organization), and taking them to a homeless shelter for the kids that live there? This serves multiple purposes. First, they get to downsize prior to Christmas and make room for things they will receive. Second, this will simplify their lives and truly leave behind things they love instead of things they just do not play with. Third, they will get the joy of giving without spending anything and they may walk away with a greater appreciation for what they do have.

This is the time to make homemade gifts as well. There are wonderful websites and/or books (you can borrow them from the public libraries). A few websites that can get you started are:

To read the full article, go to

For a discussion on this topic and others, please go to our discussion forums at

Written by: Susan Harris News Editor

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