Welcome to Creative Homeschool.
I have been a home school parent of two boys for 8 years. Currently in 2011 we are doing 6th and 8th grade work. I do get asked from time to time to share some of the online resources
I have discovered as well as some of my own simple ideas
about how to make home schooling fun and creative.
Hope you will find this blog helpful.
Blessings, Margot

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Just About Ready

This year I am a bit more organized about what we will be doing. I start each year wondering what we will do and spending time praying that the Lord would help me work out a plan that will work for us. I always have to cross over that moment of overwhelm and insecurity and take that leap of faith. I remind my self and remember that God gave these particular kids to me so I know he will equip me to train them to be the people he wants them to be.
This year our loose theme is Chronicles of Narnia. It is our family read aloud book currently - we will read through the whole series. So why not make that our theme. (More on that later - I have not yet begun to decorate.)

The photos are of the white dish pans for each kid as a place to keep their school stuff. Everyone works in various places at various times so I wanted them to have a movable desk of sorts. You will notice that each bucket has a different color note books and folder. One kid gets red, one green and one blue.

So here is what we are doing and where I have found the materials that we are using. Like I said I have things a lot more organized - I am a really good fly by the seat of my pants kind of person. Since I have gained an older child who is used to school I thought it might be good to have a bit more of a plan worked out for everyone. Gotta appear like you know what you are doing after all.
Keep in mind that if something does not work we are not afraid to chuck it and try something else. Just as a side note I have probably only spent about $100 dollars for notebooks, folders, misc. supplies and a few books. I may add a full subscription to EdHelper at some point- it is worth the money. I generally find just about everything I need some where on line for free.
I love Freebie of the Day and Currclick and I know how to use the Google and other search engines. Happy homeschooling - I set aside this week to figure it all out and get ready - it will mostly run on auto pilot and kids are generally on their own to get their work done if they want to gain freedoms for things like TV, Computer and Gadgets later in the day. One child gets done quickly one takes all day and longer sometimes. Not sure what the new one will be like to deal with.

Here is the link to our daily checklist.

• Character Studies Link
My Character Journal Page
• Biology is an ABeka Book that we borrowed called Biology God's Living Creation. Each kid has a note book to answer the daily questions.
• Math - We are using the Daily Mental Math books from World Teachers press available at CBD
In addition I found the most awesome math on line tutorial video site. Kahn Academy.
• Spelling - I found a free spelling course - It looks good so we are giving it a try. Each kid has a spelling note book. I posted the spelling rules in the back and in the front are some practice ideas and the daily schedule suggested by the course.
• Grammar & Copy work are being combined - what better to copy than the grammar rules.
Reading - we use borrowed book from friends, the library plus on line reading at Google books and Project Gutenberg. They either narrate to me what they have read or do a note book page.
• Listening - I love Libravox this is great for kids that don't read so well yet. Actually all ages there is something about listening to something read to you that allows the imagination to develop. They do a note book page or narrate to me what they heard.
• Writing - I am so excited about this, first the writers club and then the challenge to write a novel in 30 days and the work books to walk you through the process at Nano Young Writers.
• Art we use the drawing exercise found at DonnaYoung.org she has an awesome site with lots of helpful planners and other helpful stuff. We also use a variety of books from the library. I have a art work space set up with tools and supplies easily at hand.
PE/ and Improv is a no brainer - go play out side, ride your bike, skate board, etc. One child wants to be involved in the Parks and Recreation Basketball and other sports programs. One wants to do bowling. For Improv I was given a book called Secrets and Surprises by Joe Wayman and Lorraine Plum. It is full of funny things to act out. All three of my kids like acting so we also audition regularly for the Spokane Children's Theater. One child is currently in rehearsals for High School Musical 2. The others were too young but auditioned anyway - its good practice.
• Unit Studies they can be found everywhere on line but we will use a lot from the site I have linked this blogger mom has done an awesome job.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Real People Note Book Pages

We are starting off the year with a Unit Study on American Indians. I made these pages to help the kids put together note book pages for real people.
They will research on line and at the local library.
There are documents like this that I made for
Chief Seattle. Chief Joseph, and Spokane Garry at

Found good info on Spokan Garry at

Chief Joseph and Chief Seattle at

I'm sure there are many others to be found but these seemed to be a good starting place for us.

Character Studies

I created this form to go along with the character studies offered at http://www.characterjournal.com/
I think we will try one character trait for every week or so. There are a lot of verses that kids can look up and supporting bible stores.
I have not decided yet if I will print these as 8.5x11 or half size sheets.

You get a decent copy by clicking on the photo of the page. A better copy can be downloaded at

Spelling and Math Finds

I found two really great sites today one for math
http://www.khanacademy.org/ offering 800 free online videos for just about every kind of math one might need to know.

The other a free 30 week spelling course http://www.splashesfromtheriver.com/spelling/index.htm

I know I will be using both of theses this year.