About this iReport
  • Approved for CNN

  • Click to view HHMWendy's profile
    Posted April 10, 2014 by
    United States
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Advice from home-schoolers

    Advice from Homeschoolers: Keeping Kids Interested and Learning Outside of Your Homeschool


    CNN PRODUCER NOTE     HHMWendy became a "stay-at-home, home-schooling mom" after her first child was born 19 years ago and left her job as a middle school language arts teacher.

    HHMWendy has home-schooled all three of her children and is also the co-owner of the Hip Homeschool Moms website. The greatest benefit she sees in home-schooling her children "is that I have a chance to get to know my children on a deeper level than might be possible if my children attended school outside of the home."

    - Verybecoming, CNN iReport producer

    As a mom who has homeschooled for 17 years and as co-owner of the Hip Homeschool Moms , I’ve learned a lot about how to keep my children actively engaged in learning whether we’re in our homeschool “classroom” or anywhere else. One of my favorite things about homeschooling is that we can turn almost anything into a learning experience!


    My son, for example, used to go with his great grandmother once a week to help her do her grocery shopping since he was available in the mornings when she had the energy to go. Not only did he learn about time management and money, but he also forged a very close relationship with her!


    Many homeschoolers work part-time and have much more flexible work hours than other students. My son has a part-time job, and he is able to work either mornings or afternoons depending on when he is needed. Besides earning some money to pay for things like his new laptop, he has also had the chance to learn about saving money and budgeting.


    He also spends time helping at the food pantry at our church. It’s open one morning a week year-round. He helps pack food boxes and carry and load them into clients’ cars. He also has the chance to learn to relate to people who are different than he is—those who are less fortunate and who often don’t have many friends.


    Many homeschooling families are active in a local church. My daughter helps in the toddlers’ Sunday school class and nursery. She participates in holiday musicals and plays. My son is active in the youth group and helps with the lights and projector during worship services.


    We are active in our local homeschool group. My children participate in classes, activities, and field trips with children of all ages and grade levels.


    Besides the activities I’ve already mentioned, my children have learned so much from helping me run my homeschool blog/website, writing their own blog posts, and taking live online classes with other students from all over the world.


    Along those lines, we recently learned of an online resource called Thrively (http://www.thrively.com/), and we’re really excited about it! After filling out a questionnaire, each student is given information about live and online classes, resources, and activities to match that child’s strengths and interests. We haven’t yet had time to explore everything that Thrively has to offer us, but we’re eager to learn more! This is just one example of the new learning opportunities that are becoming available to homeschoolers.


    It’s easy to see that homeschoolers have more opportunities for learning than we can possibly take advantage of. What a great “problem” to have!

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