Worthy Reads

my little scientist


Over 100,000 African American Parents Are Now Homeschooling Their Children – North Dallas Gazette

Homeschooler tires of awkwardness – The Ranger – Be sure to read the comments too.

The Sinister Side of Homeschooling – The Daily Beast

Homeschooling Resources

World Book Encyclopedia Typical Course of StudyYES! They put this back on the web! (Thank you to whoever told me this.) I used to refer to this, and I was disappointed when they took it off the web. Luckily it’s back up, and I think you’ll find it very useful as a homeschooling check list.

Mud Puddles to MeteorsA new, beautiful blog for all you nature lovers!


Teaching ate me alive – Salon.com

My Insane Homework Load Taught Me How to Game the System – The Atlantic – This just depresses the hell out of me. via @campcreek – thanks!

When Less Is More: The Case for Teaching Less Math in School – Psychology Today

Can Afternoon Naps Help Preschoolers Learn Better? – Health Day


Yes, There’s a War on Boys in School – National Review Online

Esther Cepeda: The tough world of boys – Wisconsin State Journal


How to Fall in Love With Math – NYTimes.com

I’m an introvert, and I don’t need to come out of my shell – The Matt Walsh Blog – Thanks to Peggy for sharing this commentary with me.

Five Ways Introverts Can Be Annoying – Psychology Today – funny

Worthy Reads


Five ways to stop unschooling attrition – Camp Creek Blog

Local mom weighs in on the benefits of homeschooling – WTVM.com, Columbus, Georgia – Very short video of Georgia homeschooling mom. 

Homeschooling on the Rise, Up 75% Since Late 90s – Politix – What I’m learning about media is this: One good article will come out, and then several spin-offs, such as this one will emerge. So little original content. Interesting to learn though.

Diving Into The Public Schooling vs. Home Schooling Issue – Patheos – I really can’t identify with this. I don’t hang out in a Christian circle where there is judgement for or against homeschooling. I can’t imagine not supporting any family’s personal choice on the matter. However, this a good, balanced article on the issue, and perhaps it will help some people.

Home schooling allows parents to individualize education – Las Vegas Review-Journal – Glad to know there’s a positive homeschool network in my old hometown.

Homeschooling Resources 

Teaching Sewing in Your Homeschool {Whether or Not You Sew} – Blog, She Wrote – I really need to find time to read this whole series since my little one likes to sew!

Project-based Homeschooling: Finishing – Raising Cajuns – Good thoughts on when a project ends (or not).

On the 4th of July I began thinking about civics lessons, which I hope to do with my boys at some point. Here are a couple of resources I have found, if you’re interested, though I haven’t tried either of them yet: 

Government for Kids/Grades K-5 – Kids.gov – Thanks to Homeschooling Mama on Twitter for this resource.

Intellego Unit Studies – All of these unit studies (not just the civics) look great. (FYI They are secular.) I have bought a K-2 Civics pack, but we haven’t used them yet. I think my son needs to be a little older.


Surviving Middle School – CNN Parents

Do our children know how to be citizens? – CNN Opinion – Speaking of civics lessons.


Abundance and sharing: How children learn to be generous – Camp Creek Blog

Worthy Reads

First of all, congratulations to the Barrow Journal for winning the Georgia Press Association’s 2013 General Excellence Award for the second year in a row. 


Four Reasons to Quit School and Become a Teenage Homeschooler – Huffington Post

Homeschooling Hiccups: Challenges Outside the Box – onislam.net – It’s nice to read a homeschooling article from the other side of the world and know that their houses look like tornados too! 😉

At-home classrooms filling up – World Magazine

Homeschool enrollment explodes – American Thinker

Homeschooled Kids Aren’t Freaks or Deprived, and Stereotypes Against Them Need to Go – policymic – This article doesn’t say anything new to homeschoolers (like most of them), but it’s a very good article if you need evidence for the skeptics in your life.

The Unintended Consequences of Granting Homeschooling Family Asylum – The American Spectator – I thought it was interesting to finally see an article by a very conservative paper arguing against granting asylum  to the Romeikes. 


The Milestones That Matter Most – Huff Post Parents

Why Alone Time Is So Important for Boys and Girls – Huff Post Parents – I love this so much I think I’ll have to write an article about it. via Camp Creek.

Worthy Reads



**Attention Georgia Homeschoolers: No more attendance forms for Georgia homeschoolers – Examiner.com – Whoot!

This One’s For the Homeschool Moms: Mercy’s Story – Homeschoolers Anonymous – An important read for all homeschooling moms.

Just the Facts: The Pros and Cons of Homeschooling – CBS Sacramento

Why I Homeschool – Scholastic.com – A great article that my friend sent to me. I think many of us must feel this way! It’s a secret you only realize once you start homeschooling.

THE REGULARS: Growing number of Americans choose to homeschool – Sioux City Journal

Homeschooling Resources

The Making of a Wizard & The Crafty Side of Math – Blog, She Wrote – A very good post about using math while doing project-based homeschooling.

How to Practice Spelling with Kinesthetic Learners – Smallgood Hearth


How to get the most from MOOCs – Money Magazine via CNN Schools of Thought

Teachers in Their Own Words: “Learning is Natural. School is Optional.” – Kids in the system

Only 150 of 3500 U.S. Colleges Are Worth the Investment: Former Secretary of Education – Yahoo Finance


Kids of Tiger Moms Are Worse Off – Yahoo! Shine

Have American Parents Got It All Backwards? – Huffington Post

Is Homeschooling a Human Right?


Note: This column was published in the Barrow Journal on April 10, 2013.

If you are a parent, do you believe you have the right to decide how and where your child will be educated? This is an issue that has been brought up recently by a German family who was granted asylum in the U.S. in 2008 after being persecuted in their country for homeschooling, but now they are fighting deportation after that decision was overturned.

The Romeikes’ are an Evangelical Christian family who wants to homeschool their six children, but German law prohibits homeschooling. They have been charged with $9,000 in fines, and at one point authorities came to their home to forcibly take their children to public school.

On February 11, 2013, the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) posted a news release by Michael Farris, J.D., LL.M., HSLDA Founder and Chairman, titled “German Homeschool Case May Impact U.S. Homeschool Freedom,” and since that time, many offshoots of that article have made it into (mostly) conservative news media outlets.

The HSLDA is a nonprofit organization that defends homeschoolers’ rights and family freedoms. It’s a very conservative organization, and not all homeschoolers agree with every stance they take, but they have done a lot of work to defend the rights of many homeschoolers.

Their news release states, “The U.S. law of asylum allows a refugee to stay in the United States permanently if he can show that he is being persecuted for one of several specific reasons. Among these are persecution for religious reasons and persecution of a ‘particular social group.’”

Later, Farris writes, “But my goal today is to not belabor the nature of German repression of homeschooling; rather I seek to reveal the view of the United States government to all of this.” He says that while the U.S. argued many things in their brief, there were three specific arguments we should know about.

  1. No one’s rights were violated because the German law bans homeschooling for everybody and not for select people.
  2. The Romeikes’ case failed to show that there was discrimination based on religion because they couldn’t prove that all homeschoolers were Christian or that all Christian homeschoolers believe they have to homeschool.
  3. The U.S. government says that Germany’s ban on homeschooling does not meet the standard of belonging to a particular social group because the family can stop homeschooling and put their kids into public school at any time.

Farris concludes his press release by stating, “When the United States government says that homeschooling is a mutable choice—they are saying that it is a characteristic that a government can legitimately coerce you to change. In other words, you have no protected right to choose the education for your children.”

In an article on ABCnews.go.com titled, “Home Schooling German Family Fights Deportation” writer Ben Waldron got a quote from Karla McKanders, an asylum and refugee law specialist at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Among other things she says “that immigration officials may be wary of setting a precedent that establishes homeschooling as a means for asylum. ‘They don’t want to open up the floodgates for similar asylum claims based on these grounds,’ she said.”

An article in the United Kingdom’s Daily Mail quotes Christopher Bentley, a spokesman for the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, which is an arm of the Department of Homeland Security.  He said he could not talk about any specific asylum case, but that the basis for any asylum grant is that “They have to claim that their government can’t protect them from persecution because they’re part of a specific group.” Are homeschoolers a specific group? That’s a hard one.

Of course, I hate to see this family forced to return home to exorbitant fines, prosecution and to possibly have their children removed from their custody. Every parent has the right to educate their children as they see fit whether or not I agree with how or what they teach.

But the greater question here is what Farris and many other media outlets claim to be a threat to our American rights to choose the education of our children. Is this case telling us that we should be concerned that our rights could be taken away? I would be curious to hear from a variety of homeschoolers. What do you think?

Note: If you’re interested in helping the Romeike family, the HSLDA has started a White House petition to stop their deportation. They need 100,000 signatures by April 18th in order to get a response from the White House. You can find out how to do that here: http://www.hslda.org/legal/cases/romeike/petition.asp

[They received the 100,000 signatures that they needed yesterday! Read more here.]

And I do hope you’ll comment here and share this with other homeschoolers. I really want to hear from a variety of homeschoolers.

A Bit of News & Worthy Reads

boys at harris homestead

My Own Worthy Read

I’m excited to share with you the news that I have an article and photographs published in the Spring 2013 issue of Georgia Backroads magazine.  If you’re a local Georgia homeschooler, you may be interested in picking up a copy because my article is a good lesson in Georgia and American history.  Titled “Rogues Road Landmark:  The William Harris Homestead,” I give readers a glimpse into the history of the beautiful William Harris Homestead (pictured above) in Monroe, Georgia.  If you haven’t visited the homestead and you want to, don’t hesitate to e-mail me and ask about it!


My worthy reads are rather skimpy because we’ve had some illnesses in the house, and I’m plum tired of reading about homeschooling in the media. It’s so much of the same stuff. But I have found some great blog posts and a few other worthy reads to share with you.


Psychology: Homeschooling offers viable option for many – CapitalGazzette.com – Happy to see this positive and detailed article about homeschooling.

Old Earth, Young Minds: Evangelical Homeschoolers Embrace Evolution – The Atlantic

Ask The Taxgirl: Do Homeschooling Expenses Qualify As An Educator Expense – Forbes – Short answer, no.

Homeschool Writing with Patricia Zaballos – FIMBY – Two of my favorite homeschooling bloggers bundled together in one post! Seriously, this is a good overview of Patricia’s advice about writing, and if you like it, you may want to see her new series on her blog, Become a Writing Mentor to Your Child, Part 1

Science and Inquiry – Avant Parenting

German Homeschoolers fight for asylum in U.S. – Aljazeera

Homeschooling Resource

Mazes, Free Printables, Easy to Hard – krazydad – My boys have been into mazes lately, and my husband found this great resource for finding mazes for all levels.


My daughter realized I’m going to die – The Cultivated Mother – Kimberly is a homeschooling mom, but I felt this very moving post fit under parenting.

Finding the true path to happiness – Project Based Homeschooling

Educating and Raising Boys

How to Help Boys – Blogging ‘Bout Boys

Worthy Reads

I’m going through my photo archives, and I came across this old favorite. “Playing with (throwing) leaves and dirt”


The Importance of Realigning Priorities – Interest-Led Learning

Highly Inappropriate, then and now – Avant Parenting

It’s not enough to be smart – Project-based Homeschooling

German Homeschool Case May Impact U.S. Homeschool Freedom – HSLDA – Worth being aware of. Ever since the HSLDA posted this, there has been many spin-off articles.  I’m just posting a couple of extra below:

Mainstream television features kids growing up without school – Innovative Educator

Waco: As Texas Weighs School Safety Options, Local Couple Advocates Home Schooling – Our Town Texas

Homeschooling, community college aided high-achieving Moorestown family – philly.com


How Do We Prepare Our Children for What’s Next? – Mindshift – Excellent article!

Why Inquiry Learning is Worth the Trouble – Mindshift

Has Kindergarten Become Too Academic? – Anne Murphy Paul

A warning to college profs from a high school teacher – The Washington Post – Someone posted this on a local homeschool list. Thank you!

Best Paying College Majors Are Mostly In Engineering – Huffington Post

A 15-year-old student’s ed reform plan: Self-directed learning – The Washington Post

Why introverts shouldn’t be forced to talk in class – The Washington Post

Obama touts preschools in Georgia: ‘This isn’t baby-sitting’ – CNN.com – I have mixed feelings about this.  I do think good free preschool should be available to all families who need it. It does seem to be beneficial in certain cases, especially when parents don’t have the time to devote to their children because of economic hardship, but ideally, children should be at home bonding with their parents, playing, exploring, learning for fun, and being kids!  They don’t need more school.  They need good parents.

How Free Play Can Define Kids’ Success – Mindshift

Worthy Reads


Why Homeschooling is Becoming Hipster – townhall.com

School Choice Week: Why Homeschool Is the Best School – patheos.com

Happier Homeschooling – About.com – I thought this was a good, succinct article about making homeschooling less stressful. I definitely agree it should make your life easier, not harder!

Take me to Your Dungeon Master – FIMBY – A must read for anyone who is doing interest-led learning. What happens when your children want to learn about something you’re not interested in?

Stress and Learning – Avant Parenting – Excellent information for homeschoolers about brain research and how we learn.


Three Trends That Will Shape the Future of Curriculum – Mindshift – I saw Patricia Zaballos tweet this, and I agree with her when she said, “Homeschoolers, we’re so far ahead of the game!”


8 Mindful Practices for Parents – Mindful

Tear Down the Swing Sets – Slate – Thanks to Jennifer L.W. Fink for sharing this on Twitter!

Raising and Educating Boys (Don’t forget I add all of these to my comprehensive page Worthy Reads about Raising and Educating Boys.)

Building Strong Boys – Not Just Cute – This looks to be a promising series about boys, risk factors and the positive things they need.

Worthy Reads


*NOTE GEORGIA HOMESCHOOLERS: New bills affecting homeschooling in Georgia – Atlanta Homeschooling Examiner

How home schooling threatens monopoly education – USA Today

Homeschooling — Another Name for Helicopter Parenting? – Huffpost Students

The Microcosm of Homeschooling – Huffpost Teen

A Home-Schooling Pioneer Looks to the Future – NYTimes.com

The Messy Side of Interest-Led Learning – Interest-Led Learning

Learning to use the time you have – Project-Based Homeschooling

Homeschool Reflection: I’m Ambivalent – Patheos


Online courses need human element to educate – CNN Schools of Thought

Raising and Educating Boys

Guns don’t kill people – our sons do – USA Today – Very provocative column, and I have to agree with it.

Boys, Bullying & Guns – Blogging ‘Bout Boys

Worthy Reads


7 Reasons to Homeschool Through High School – TheHomeSchoolMom.com

Using YouTube for homeschooling – Simple Homeschool – I LOVE YouTube for homeschooling, but I didn’t know you could sign up for YouTube for Schools, which offers more controls over what you can view as stated in this post.  Yay!

Education: Keep it in the family – The Economist

The Itchy Sweater – Creekside Learning – This blogger is writing about her daughter’s difficulty wearing clothes and how she learned that she had Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD).

A Homeschooling Guide To Doing Chemistry – science 2.0

Double income potential for college grads: Homeschoolers lead the ranks – Phoenix Homeschooling Examiner.com

Books featuring homeschoolers – Avant Parenting

Stealth educational choice? – Educating Ourselves : Deseret News

Sorting out the truth and myth in home schooling – The Oregonian


Why Daydreaming Isn’t a Waste of Time – Mindshift

Beyond Strategy and Winning, How Games Teach Kids Empathy – Mindshift

What’s a teacher to do? – The Innovator Educator – “As Papert predicted in 1980, the time has come when some of our students have figured out they don’t need to come to school to learn. They see what is happening in the class as disconnected to what is happening in their world and the carrot of passing the test is no longer enough.”

How to Turn Your Classroom into an Idea Factory – Mindshift

Educating Boys

‘Girls’ better behaviour results in higher grades than boys’ – Education – Scotsman.com – This is an irritating article. Boys are no less well-behaved than girls. They (and some girls) have different needs, including the need for a better learning environment where they can move and do more hands-on activities! This article is from Scotland, but the expert quoted happens to be from a local university.

Please add your Worthy Reads to the comments section.