Sandy Creek Nature Center’s Discovery Boxes Are Available to Home Educators

It wasn’t long after I taught my (then four ~ five-year-old) about the solar system that I learned about the discovery boxes at the Sandy Creek Nature Center.

You can check out a discovery box for two weeks for the cost of $5.00.  Though they are created for classroom use and may have more in them than one family can use, they are still worth looking at if you are working on a particular subject.  They are for approximately pre-K through 5th grade.

They have discovery boxes for a wide array of subjects such as astronomy, weather, rocks and gems, mammals, animal tracks, creatures of the night, birds, trees, marine life and more… If you stop by the nature center, ask the receptionist to see the list of discovery boxes. There’s an inventory list for each box.

I tried the astronomy box when we were learning about the solar system.  There were two children’s books that were perfect for my son, and a bag of planet magnets that he had fun arranging on our refrigerator. We also had fun trying to get the little planetarium star theater to work, but we don’t have the right kind of room for it, and it didn’t look right in our bathroom! (The darkest room in our house.)

There was a lot of stuff that just wasn’t age appropriate for him and materials for a large classroom that I didn’t need.  Unfortunately, some of the materials were old, and things like computer programs were not compatible with my computer.  The books were outdated and stated that Pluto is a planet, but that didn’t bother me.

I don’t want to discourage you from checking into these boxes, however.  If you’re working on a particular unit, or your child has an interest in a certain subject, you should look into it.  Every box is going to offer different stuff.

Worthy Reads

Homeschooling in the media

Rural Homeschooling on the Rise – Daily Yonder | Keep It Rural

The Last Radicals – National Review Online

Homeschooling an option for some – Geneva Republican

To Be Young, Gifted and Bored, Part 2 – GPB Blogs

Success requires balancing being right with being nice – Penelope Trunk


Homeschooling Resources – Welcome to Primarily Reading where you will find free materials for beginning readers and later learners.

“most of what you think you know about writing is useless” – Wonder Farm – This is becoming one of my favorite blogs to follow too.

Critique with children – Project Based Homeschooling – I need to hang this up on my wall.

9 Creative Storytelling Tools That Will Make You Wish You Were A Student Again – THE Journal



A Is for Apps for Education –

Worst College Majors for Your Career – Yahoo! Finance

Helping kids cross the digital divide – CNN Radio News

My view: America’s students can benefit from Singapore math – CNN Schools of Thought – Does anyone use Singapore Math in your homeschool?  Do you like it? I’m thinking of looking into other math programs for us, so I’d like to hear comments.

How to Help Your Kinesthetic Learner Do Better in School –

My View: The future of credentials – CNN Schools of Thought

My View: Should I know where I’ll be in 10 years? – CNN Schools of Thought

The rigor (?) of kindergarten! – The Innovative Educator – Yep, one of the reasons we’re homeschooling right now.

Attention Disorder or Not, Children Prescribed Pills to Help in School –

Teaching What You Don’t Know – The Chronicle of Higher Education – “Teaching as a content novice, you are more likely to set realistic expectations for learners, to notice when they are breaking down and experiencing problems, and to pause and make adjustments in response—instead of marching dutifully from one end of the syllabus to the other, covering everything on your ambitious agenda.”



How to be a calm parent – Awesomely Awake – Great post by Shawn Ledington Fink. I think I need to hang it on my wall too.



How to Advance in the Workforce, Even if you’re a Stay at Home Mom – A Successful Woman

Dealing with Naysayers & Negativity – written by one of my favorite bloggers, Renee Tougas – outsideways – Excellent commentary for anyone who is dealing with criticism about their choice to homeschool!


I can’t possibly list all the articles on homeschooling that are popping up the media these days, and I can’t list all the interesting education articles, or parenting or other resources….so I leave it up to now: Please share any worthy reads YOU have found (or written) recently.  Thank you!