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September/October 2013 $6.50 USA/$15.50 INTL


he Home School Foundation is a nationwide organization whose mission is to bless home school families and further the cause of homeschooling.  HSF is the charitable arm of the Home School Legal Defense Association, founded in 1994 as a non-profit 501 (c) (3).   These two organizations are very closely tied in their mission to help and support the home school community. Through various funds, HSF offers assistance to homeschooling families with specific needs ... widows, single parents, special needs, military families, curriculum relief, disaster relief, and more. Many home school families have been blessed through assistance from HSF this past year. HSF also works through a volunteer Ambassador program. Ambassadors work together to identify needs and organize

and implement local service projects such as repairing a widow’s roof, helping a single mom with yard maintenance, or putting together backpacks of school supplies for home school children who would otherwise do without. In addition, ambassadors organize fundraisers to benefit home school families in their state who need financial assistance. Would you please consider volunteering as an ambassador for HSF? Ambassadors make the work of HSF personal and tangible as they help struggling home school families.  To do so, please visit Ricci Black, HSF Ambassador Program Coordinator Home School Foundation “Many Hands Making a Difference in Your Homeschool Community”

!"#$%&'())(*+,)$-./0$1(&2/2.)$-+&.)3-++/$4-,+56-$-(,*$42&.)7 82)24$9997-+&.)3-++/1+5:*(42+:7+,6;<+/5:4..,$4+$/.(,:$&+,.7

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#10535 September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook


Publisher’s Letter

Brilliant Publishing LLC Post Office Box 31687, Myrtle Beach, SC 29588 Telephone: 717.571.9233


Maureen Williams 717.608.5869

Account Executive Alex Chambers



he key to teaching anything in my opinion is to get the students engaged make it interesting and make it fun. Teaching and learning do not have to be static, boring and repetitive. We are not robots and most people enjoy and engage when they are doing things that they perceive as interesting and fun. Our cover story this month offers a look at the latest game to hit schools and education nationwide, Minecraft. This game is being used successfully in classes all over the country. Does it really teach anything … I cannot say, but what I can attest to is that my son LOVES the game! The game oozes creativity and makes learning fun. It has been called virtual Legos® . It is endless, has no clear goal and does not finish. If for no other reason, I feel it is a brilliant teaching tool as it teaches children to use two of the most important tools in modern-day society – Creativity and Computers. Computers and computer games have become a ubiquitous part of modern life. Globally, 3 billion hours a week are spent playing computer games. (gamificaiton. org 2012) So while some may disagree, in this home we shall continue to build our empires while laughing and learning. After all spending time with your children is the one thing that they will remember always. It is not that toy or brilliant curriculum you just purchased, but rather the one-on-one time spent with a loved one. So, any game that allows me time to hang out with my son is a winner in my book. Grab a cub of tea, sit back and enjoy the issue. Keep those emails and suggestions coming! We love nothing more than to hear from you our invaluable readers. Let us know how we are doing and what you want to see more of, email me: or like and message us on Facebook and follow us on twitter http://www.twitter/@TheHomeschool. Remember always…

Education Matters!

Maureen Williams, Publisher 717-608-5869



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

Editor In Chief

MaryAnne Morrill

Senior Editor

Michelle Donofry

Social Media/Asst. Editor

Molly Anika

Style / Asst. Editor Charity Plata

Subscription Service / Back Issues:

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Alicia Bayer, Vicki Bentley, The Container Store, Colleen Hoenicke Sarita Holzmann, Richele McFarlin, Emily Adams McCord, Annie Murphy Paul, Donna Vail, Adam Vera


Jeremy Tingle The Homeschool Handbook is published bi-monthly by Brilliant Publishing LLC, Post Office Box 31687, Myrtle Beach, SC 29588 Telephone: (717) 571-9233, Fax: (717) 566-5431. Postage paid at Michigan City, IN and additional offices. POSTMASTER please send address changes to The Homeschool Handbook, 9034 Joyce Lane, Hummelstown, PA 17036. Volume 4 Number 04. The Homeschool Handbook subscription rates: one-year $19.95 USD, Canadian $59.95 USD, Foreign $89.95 USD. All subscriptions are non-refundable. Copyright © 2013 Brilliant Publishing LLC. All rights reserved. the publisher reserves the right to accept or reject any advertising or editorial material. Advertisers, and/or their agents, assume the responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on the advertisement. Editorial contributors assume responsibility for their published works and assume responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on published work. No part of this publication can be reproduced in any form or by electronic or mechanical means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the publisher. All items submitted to The Homeschool Handbook become the sole property of Brilliant Publishing LLC. Editorial content does not reflect the views of the publisher. The imprints, logos, trademarks or trade names (collectively the “Marks”) displayed on the products featured in The Homeschool Handbook are for illustrative purposes only and are not available for sale. The Marks do not represent the implied or actual endorsement by the owners of the Marks of the product on which they appear. All of the Marks are the property of the respective owners and are not the property of either the advertisers using the Marks or The Homeschool Handbook. MEDICAL DISCLAIMER No warranty whatsoever is made by the publisher and there is absolutely no assurance that any statement contained or cited in any article touching on medical matters is true, correct, precise, or up-to-date. Even if a statement made about medicine is accurate, it may not apply to you or your symptoms. The medical information provided is, at best, of a general nature and cannot substitute for the advice of a medical professional (for instance, a qualified doctor/physician, nurse, pharmacist/chemist, and so on). None of the individual contributors, LLC members, subcontractors, advertisers, or anyone else connected to Brilliant Publishing LLC and The Homeschool Handbook can take any responsibility for the results or consequences of any attempt to use or adopt any of the information presented in this magazine. Nothing included, as a part of this publication should not be construed as an attempt to offer or render a medical opinion or otherwise engage in the practice of medicine.

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SONLIGHT The way you wish you’d been taught.


volu me 04


issue 05



The Homeschool Handbook Your resource, support & inspiration for a successful at home education & lifestyle.


special features 9 13

Minecraft - game or educational tool? Why essays matter


14 How do I introduce Shakespeare 16 Achieving cognitive balance 18 Homeschooling your Family of all ages - the six keys to success


Creating our own opportunities


23 Tithing is a spiritual condition of the heart 24 When hundreds of thousands came to Christ

14 6


The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


kids corner 26

Fun Facts – 1 World Kids

columns 28 29

Curriculum Review Product Spotlight

resources 30

Index/Resources List

9 13 For breaking news & tips be sure to follow The Homeschool Handbook on social media: Follow us on twitter: Become a Fan on Facebook: The Homeschool Handbook Magazine ©

September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook


contributors curriculum

Alicia Bayer and her husband homeschool their five children (toddler to teens) in Minnesota. You can subscribe to Alicia’s homeschooling column at http://, follow her blog at http://magicandmayhem. and find her on Facebook at “A Magical Homeschool.”

Vicki Bentley, author of Home Education 101 and a veteran homeschool mom of many, offers help and encouragement through the Home School Legal Defense Association’s Toddlers to Tweens program. For more information on homeschool preschool through middle school children, please visit

The Container Store stands for ‘organization with heart’ and recently celebrated its 13th year on FORTUNE magazine’s list of “100 Best Companies to Work For.” The Container Store continues to give back to the community with a focus on supporting nonprofits that promote women’s and children’s wellbeing and health. For more information and ideas, please visit



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

Sarita Holzmann is the co-founder and president of Sonlight Curriculum ( She cherishes a legacy of family-centered, literaturerich home education and seeks to provide families with the rich resources they need to raise life-long learners.

Annie Murphy Paul is a science writer who contributes to The New York Times, Time Magazine, and other publications. She is the author of Brilliant: The Science of How We Get Smarter, to be published by Crown in 2014. You can read more on her website,

Richele McFarlin is a history loving, Charlotte Mason addicted homeschooling mom to four children. In nine years of homeschooling she has taught everything from tying your shoes to Physics. You can find her blogging at

Donna Vail is the Founder of An Inspired Education, a company devoted to empowering families around the world to a lifestyle of true freedom through homeschooling, inspiration and entrepreneurship. Donna and her husband have homeschooled their six children for the past 16 years and now help today’s homeschoolers find their way. For more about her company, visit

Emily Adams McCord is a freelance writer and the director of The Write Lab (, which offers online writing courses and writing curriculum. Emily has an M.A. in English from Indiana University and lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband, Mark.

Adam Vera graduated summa cum laude from the University of North Texas with a BA, majoring in English Literature and Western History. He was homeschooled by his mother from preschool to high school graduation. His critical essays, drama and film reviews, articles, and fiction pieces have been featured in a variety of digital and print publications. He currently works as a teacher and freelance writer while applying to graduate school where he plans to study Renaissance drama. To read some of his other essays, feel free to visit his profile: ©

special feature

Game or Educational By: MaryAnne Morrill



omputer games are a part of modern life, but do they have a place in the educational landscape? As unbelievable as it may seem, billions of hours are spent globally every week playing computer games. ‘Gamification’: the use of game design elements in a non-gaming context is growing exponentially. Commercial enterprises are currently taking advantage of gamification to build consumer participation, motivation and profitability and educators are now beginning to apply gamification to learning. Although numerous educational games have been developed in general they have either been mediocre or outright failures that is until Minecraft. Designed by game designers in 2009, three elements make Minecraft unique; the game has no clear goal (it doesn’t finish), the graphics are simplistic, and the game encourages exploration and construction in a solo or multiplayer environment. Simply put Minecraft has been called virtual Legos. More children are discovering Minecraft and with over 6 million copies sold it is now being implemented by teachers as an educational tool that their students can have fun with as they learn. Joel Levin, also known as the Minecraft Teacher and creator of MinecraftEdu is one of the early adopters and spearhead of a movement to use Minecraft as a teaching tool.


But you may ask, what do children learn in Minecraft if it is just video game Legos? Teachers are finding that their students learn to: -Communicate -Build -Imagine -Conceptualize 3D spaces -Calculate Volume and Area -Perform Number Conversions -Share Research Strategies -Critically Analyze Information -Publish Blogs, Videos & Artwork online

For those interested in beginning the Minecraft experience there is a free version in addition to the paid version although the paid version offers a lot more. Teachers like Mr. Levin recommend that parents participate in the introduction of Minecraft to their children by sitting with them and letting them be the leader as they build their skill base. Children tend to become experts rather quickly, so it is important for parents to ask questions and help their children make connections between what they are doing in the game and some real life lessons. If you are considering making Minecraft a part of your homeschool environment the following chart from wiki/Minecraft_in_education provides some potential benefits in a number of subject areas: (SEE CHART A on page10 )

September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook






The names of items in the inventory are a great place to start teaching children to read, since each item has a tooltip and image which go together. For older children, reading the wiki and online guides can extend their skills.


Players can use the Book and Quill within the game to keep a log, or to communicate information to other players. By contributing to the wiki, older children learn to write informational texts in a collaborative, multimedia environment.


The crafting system can help in teaching basic math (e.g. I need 3 Sugar Cane for Paper), which transitions to multiplication (I need 3 Paper and 1 Leather for a Book, and 3 Books for a Bookshelf, so I need 9 Paper and 3 Leather all together) and division (When I create Paper I get 3 at once, so 9/3 = 3 times per Bookshelf I’ll have to create Paper).


While the Minecraft world is only made up of cubes, the creations a child makes may resemble other shapes. Parental involvement can help teach children to recognize these shapes (cube, cuboid, square based pyramid, etc.). Also, counting the number of blocks that were dug out when making a 6x6x3 cave can help multiplication skills and understanding the concepts of volume and area.


With the preparation of some Redstone circuitry, experimenting with Note Blocks can teach children about notes, octaves and chords.

Social skills

By setting up a private server, parents can provide a safe environment for children to interact with friends and make playing Minecraft a cooperative event. Using a Local Area Network (LAN, or ”home network”) will allow children to play in the same room with their friends. By using Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP, or ”voice chat”), a phone call, or the in-game text chat, they can play together wherever they are. Either method allows children to work together to build, explore, and learn as they develop their social skills, especially teamwork. For older children, contributing to the Minecraft Wiki can be a chance to learn about Internet etiquette and collaboration.

Basic Computer Science

Redstone circuitry provides an interactive environment to build basic logic circuits and combine them for more sophisticated purposes. Feedback is immediate, and the mistakes don’t destroy expensive electrical components. Additional information for using Minecraft in the classroom is offered by Andrew Miller in his article, “Ideas for Using Minecraft in the Classroom” available in full at http://www. Briefly, according to Mr. Miller Minecraft can be used to explore many structures already created and importable into the game such as the Roman Coliseum or the Globe Theatre. In the survival mode, the game can be used to give students an idea of how things work and help them analyze the different components of survival and settlement. The above are just a few of the dozens of wonderful sites on the Internet designed to help parents and teachers use Minecraft to teach their students.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


Here are some additional sites worth checking out: Getting Started in Minecraft: From Zero to Punching Wood – Here you will find the basics about how to buy, install and play Minecraft - feedingchange/2013/02/getting-started-in-minecraft-from-zero-to-punching-wood/ MinecraftEdu – Also mentioned above this site focuses on using Minecraft as a teaching tool - http://minecraftedu. com/page/, while on the site you should also visit Teaching with MinecraftEdu - php?title=Teaching_with_MinecraftEdu for videos showing to teach History, geography, science, and math, etc. Jokaydia Minecrafts – This site is dedicated to ‘playful learning’ - - they also host Massively Minecraft – a free, whitelisted, multiplayer server for children aged 4 to 16 - Gaming Educators – Another site devoted to using games in the teaching environment with a current focus on Minecraft - Craft Academy – This site and accompanying blog by Chris Miko is the brain child of a passionate teacher using Minecraft in exciting ways to teach science and other concepts - Minecraft in School - FrontPage is devoted to ideas, lessons and implementation strategies. Finally, the following 2 sites are specifically geared to homeschoolers: The Unschoolers Creative City - a Minecraft server specifically for unschoolers. Minecraft mods and homeschooling – Here a homeschooling Dad shares his thoughts on using Minecraft in his homeschool – and-homeschooling Many of the above as well as additional sources for the educational use of Minecraft are mentioned in Alicia Bayer’s article “Minecraft homeschool: Incredible educational Minecraft inspiration from all over” which can be found at We all realize that the world we live in is changing and technology is driving a large part of that change. Our children will be a part of that world filled with jobs that don’t even exist today, so it is worth considering the addition of a bit of that technology into the homeschool classroom. Minecraft may even change your mind about computer games and gamification as you children discover the fun of learning with this new tool.

Editor’s Note: The article was inspired by the article written by Alicia Bayer that originally appeared online at article/minecraft-homeschool-incredibleeducational-minecraft-inspiration-from-all-over. Please check the Contributors Page for more information about Alicia and her blog address.


September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook


special feature

Why Essays Matter Arguments are everywhere. Rhetoric is the art of argumentation. In ancient times, orators used rhetoric to sway the opinion of crowds. In the late 18th century, rhetoric mostly appeared in magazine essays and newspaper editorials. Today’s students are surrounded by rhetoric. Ads, commercials, magazines, videos, podcasts . . .

By: Emily Adams McCord


he art of essay writing is perhaps in jeopardy now more than ever. The push for STEM education and the exploding number of jobs in the areas of healthcare and technology seem to be outdating traditional humanities classes like literature and writing. Practically speaking, handwriting is still cute but any student who wants to succeed in a professional field must be computer literate, comfortable working across a number of different technological platforms, and be familiar with email, blogging, e-books, and iPhones.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

A worker’s ability to write an argumentative essay may not be needed in his job, but his ability to turn on a webcam may be the difference between employment and another job search. In a world of 140-character tweets, texts, email, and Instagram, where words, phrases, and pictures communicate at the speed of electricity, it’s a practical question: why does it matter if anyone can write a long essay? Writers and teachers of writing and parents who are educating in the ©

special feature claim, who can gather evidence to prove a point - will be classical tradition can be offended by the inquest and push more equipped to thoughtfully consider the arguments that onwards or they can practically weigh the question that is surround them and drive them each day. staring classrooms everywhere in the face. Data is everywhere. Libraries and Why does it matter? If it doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t, of hard drives full of research, key policy course, we should simply stop now. manuals that few have read and fewer Teaching a dying field wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t help our have edited, piles of unexamined students, our children, or our world. It data - the world is full of unsorted will just waste our time and theirs. Essay information. The exercise of sorting writing, after all, is a fairly painful class through information and selecting the to teach, on the part of both the child best evidence to make an argument is and the parent. It requires planning, priceless. Students who can do their topic-seeking, research-conducting, research and who can productively grading, assessing, rewriting. If it make a case in a sea of unsorted doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t matter, for goodnessâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; sakes, information are students who will be letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s stop the madness. And if we are relevant and valued team members in going to keep teaching essay writing, any profession, office, or field. we need to produce some evidence We find ourselves back where we that such classes are needed. started. Why are essays relevant? But I think essay writing still matters. Why should students learn to write In fact, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve staked my career on it. focused, argumentative pieces? Why Students should still write essays. should children conduct research, Children need to be taught the fine art even research that they will never of word usage. Here are some real, use againâ&#x20AC;Śbecause the exercise is tangible reasons to continue assigning irreplaceable? your child essays to write. Writing essays teaches children to make and understand Words are everywhere. The all-pervasive nature of the arguments, to think logically, to sort evidence, to analyze, to Internet, the explosion of social media, the popularity of wordbe creative, and to communicate. These are skills that can bearing technology like smart phones and tablets, and the never be replaced and skills that will well serve any individual clamor of 24-7 news networks means that we are surrounded for their lifetime. The essay is not an end in itself, but simply by words all of the time. The onslaught of information is not a catalyst for learning, for thinking, and for communicating. going to stop any time soon. The best way to avoid being And as such, it has inherent and lasting value. trampled or taken hostage by the deluge of word-data is to understand it. And the best way to understand it is, through practice and diligence and time, to cultivate a knowledge and, more importantly, an understanding, of language. Arguments are everywhere. pecializing in national standardized achievement tests Rhetoric is the art of argumentation. In ancient times, orators used rhetoric The Iowa TestsÂŽ CogATÂŽ to sway the opinion of crowds. In the Stanford 10 (paper and online) OLSATÂŽ TerraNovaTM - California Achievement Test Interest ExplorerTM late 18th century, rhetoric mostly (formerly CAT test - Complete and Survey) Â&#x2021;&ROOHJH&UHGLW([DPV appeared in magazine essays BASITM Â&#x2021;&/(3ÂŽ ÂŽ and newspaper editorials. Todayâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Brigance Â&#x2021;'667TM students are surrounded by rhetoric. Woodcock-JohnsonÂŽ III Â&#x2021;3UDFWLFH7HVWVIRU,RZD6WDQIRUG 7HUUD1RYD&DOLIRUQLD&RJ$72/6$7&/(3 Strong Interest InventoryÂŽ Ads, commercials, magazines,

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special feature

How Do I Introduce My Homeschooled Child BY: Adam Vera


illiam Shakespeare is quite likely the greatest writer in the English language; certainly he is one writer that every student should be introduced to before college. Although properly introducing a student to Shakespeare is not an easy task, a good introduction to Shakespeare’s works may be one of the greatest lessons you teach your child. Shakespeare’s plays and poems are both beautiful works of literature and profound commentaries on the human condition. There are, of course, a number of obstacles to overcome. First you must find a work to use as an introduction. Naturally, not all of Shakespeare’s writings are necessarily suitable. Depending upon the age and interests of your child, you may decide on a different path. Many of Shakespeare’s plays and some of his poems may be unsuitable for younger students because of their content or complexity. An obvious



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

way to avoid this issue is to simply pick and choose collections of speeches and phrases to present to your child (such as familiar phrases coined by Shakespeare or famous speeches like Hamlet’s “to be or not to be” soliloquy). While this choice will expose your children to the beauty of Shakespeare, it is not the best one since it fails to help them grasp the depth of Shakespeare’s insights on human life. If you decide to pursue this option, you should devote a significant part of your lesson to explaining the context of the speech or passage you chose so that your students understand the meaning behind the words as well as the words themselves. If, however, your students are older or mature enough to tackle a whole play, you have several options and few plays you should certainly avoid. Romeo and Juliet focuses on teenagers but the play contains so much suggestive humor that you will most likely find it inappropriate for your students, ©

even if they are in high school. Apart from this, the play as a whole is not as polished or artistic as many of Shakespeare’s later works. Hamlet is not the worst choice but its length and meandering plot make it a bit thick for many students below senior level. Macbeth makes a much better choice for homeschoolers. It is one of Shakespeare’s shortest and most moral plays, making it perfect for discussion. Not only should you have time to discuss the play in detail, you will also find plenty to talk about. The play has enough action (between the witches and several battles) to keep your students enthralled but be sure to point out to your child the very real guilt and serious consequences that arise from Macbeth’s actions. Julius Caesar is an excellent choice, full of familiar phrases and famous speeches, and containing excellent material for religious, philosophical, and political discussion. It is the first full Shakespeare play I read and remains popular among high school teachers. Richard II, although not an obvious choice, actually makes an excellent play for high school students to read. Be sure to point out to your students how Richard’s selfish behavior causes his downfall and, if possible, draw comparisons between the play’s treatment of Richard and the downfall of current public figures or celebrities. You should get some interesting discussion on the factors leading to a fall

from power. If this does not take up all your time, you can also mine the play’s presentation of Bolingbroke. Ask your student to what degree Bolingbroke’s rebellious behavior seems justified. In our complex present day, it is all too easy for educators and intellectuals to shrug off responsibility by saying that morality, philosophy, and human rights are all relative. Shakespeare recognized that this was not the case. He believed that there were such things as timeless truths, rules that should never be broken. By introducing homeschoolers to Shakespeare, we can show them that it is not wrong to hold universal standards and that no matter how much times change, certain principles hold true for every age. This is the reason that Ben Jonson rightly judged Shakespeare was not merely “of an age, but for all time.”

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special feature


c gnitive

BY: Annie Murphy Paul



irls should play more video games. That’s one of the unexpected lessons I take away from a rash of recent studies on the importance of—and the malleability of—spatial skills. First, why spatial skills matter: The ability to mentally manipulate shapes and otherwise understand how the three-dimensional world works turns out to be an important predictor of creative and scholarly achievements, according to research published this month in the journal Psychological Science. The long-term study found that 13-year-olds’ scores on traditional measures of mathematical and verbal reasoning predicted the number of scholarly papers and patents these individuals produced three decades later. But high scores on tests of spatial ability taken at age 13 predicted something more surprising: the likelihood that the individual would develop new knowledge and produce innovation in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, the domains collectively known as STEM. The good news is that spatial abilities can get better with practice. A meta-analysis of 217 research studies, published in the journal Psychological Science last year, concluded that “spatial skills are malleable, durable and transferable”: that is, spatial skills can be improved by training; these improvements persist over time; and they “transfer” to tasks that are different from the tasks used in the training. This last point is supported by a study published in the Journal of Cognition and Development, which reported that training children in spatial reasoning can improve their performance in math. A single twenty-minute training session in spatial skills enhanced participants’ ability to solve math problems, suggesting that the training “primes” the brain to tackle arithmetic, says study author and Michigan State University education professor Kelly Mix.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


special feature Findings like these have led some researchers to advocate for the addition of spatial-skills training to the school curriculum. That’s not a bad idea, but here’s another way to think about it: the informal education children receive can be just as important as what they learn in the classroom. We need to think more carefully about how kids’ formal and informal educational experiences fit together, and how one can fill gaps left by the other. If traditional math and reading skills are emphasized at school, for example, parents can make sure that spatial skills are accentuated at home—starting early on, with activities as simple as talking about the spatial properties of the world around us. A 2011 study from researchers at the University of Chicago reported that the number of spatial terms (like “circle,” “curvy,” and “edge”) parents used while interacting with their toddlers predicted how many of these kinds of words children themselves produced, and how well they performed on spatial problem-solving tasks at a later age. As kids grow older, much of the experience they get in manipulating three-dimensional objects comes from playing video games—which brings us back to the contention at the start of this article. Males have historically held the advantage over females in spatial ability, and this advantage has often been attributed to genetic differences. But males’ spatial edge may also reflect, in part, differences in the leisure-time activities of boys and girls, activities that add up to a kind of daily drill in spatial skills for boys. If that’s the case, then offering girls more opportunities to practice their spatial skills may begin to close the spatialskills gender gap—and produce more female scientists, engineers and mathematicians in the bargain. So suggests a study by University of Toronto researchers, published in the journal Psychological Science. They found that playing an action video game “can virtually eliminate” the gender difference in a basic capacity they call spatial attention, while at the same time reducing the gender difference in the ability to mentally rotate objects, a higher-level spatial skill. Exposure to video games, the authors conclude, “Could play a significant role as part of a larger strategy designed to interest women in science and engineering careers.” Participants with little prior video-game exposure “realized large gains after only ten hours of training,” they note, adding that “we can only imagine the benefits that might be realized after weeks, months, or even years of action-video-gaming experience.” Parents of daughters may blanch at the idea of actually encouraging “years” of action video game play. These moms and dads should tell themselves that their daughters aren’t wasting their time—they’re readying themselves for brilliant careers as scientists and engineers. ©

A Brilliant Quote “The informal learning environments of television, video games, and the Internet are producing learners with a new profile of cognitive skills. This profile features widespread and sophisticated development of visualspatial skills, such as iconic representation and spatial visualization . . . Formal education must adapt to these changes, taking advantage of new strengths in visual-spatial intelligence and compensating for new weaknesses in higher-order cognitive processes: abstract vocabulary, mindfulness, reflection, inductive problem solving, critical thinking, and imagination. These develop through the use of an older technology, reading, which, along with audio media such as radio, also stimulates imagination. Informal education therefore requires a balanced media diet using each technology’s specific strengths in order to develop a complete profile of cognitive skills.”

—Patricia Greenfield, “Technology and Informal Education: What Is Taught, What Is Learned”

Call toll-free for a catalog 1-866-260-7221 or visit our website September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook



Homeschooling Your Family of All Ages –

The Six Keys to

By: Donna Vail



e have six children ages 5, 10, 12, 15, 17 and 21. Our oldest is away at college while our other five kids are keeping us busy with a little bit of everything and everything in between. Homeschooling a large family of all ages can be a challenge, but it doesn’t have to be if you know and apply my six keys to homeschooling success for families of all ages.

The 6 Keys to Homeschooling Families of All Ages: 1. Create a parent partnership and see the balance. Laying down a lot of rules does nothing more than create rule breakers. We walk in partnership with our children. Walking beside them with full support, unconditional love and appreciation for their uniqueness builds trust and strengthens relationships. Establishing a partnership helps dissolve many of the relational and behavioral problems prevalent in parent-child relationship. Our



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

challenges are sometimes our greatest teachers. Understanding this natural flow of challenge and support helps us better navigate and live in balance with each other. When we homeschool this happens to a deeper degree because we’re spending more time living and learning together, ensuring each person has everything they need to become their best and share their life’s purpose. ©

2. Don’t entertain them. Let’s face it, we all love to be entertained and it’s fun for a time but not a daily way of living. Children need to learn how to navigate through the day rather than have someone run it for them. They actually prefer this independence, which helps them naturally move towards inspiration leading them towards their life purpose. This inspiration is within all us, but must be nurtured and supported. Instead of creating daily activities, set up an inspiring learning environment filled with books, people, tools for toys, supplies for projects and plenty of wide open space and time to explore, invent and create. 3. Spend time daily with youngest to oldest, in that order. Young children need to be filled up at the beginning of the day so it’s imperative that you work with them first. This helps create great satisfaction, establishing self-directed contentment. As soon as we finish breakfast it’s time for reading, writing and numbers with my five-year-old. Once she’s completed her daily work she’s very content to sit and draw, sometimes for a whole hour. I have a closet in my office full of things she can do while older siblings sit to do their studies. Puzzles, art supplies, journals, color books, and educational/Montessori tools are essential. 4. Choose self-education instead of teaching and burning out. I started out my homeschooling career by traditional teaching back in 1995. A few short years of that and we were burned out. Rather than throwing in the towel on homeschooling, I elected to do extensive research on how learning really happens. What I discovered changed my life and our homeschool forever. I was astonished to learn that the world’s most highly educated and successful people who made a real difference in the world were self-educated. This led to the revelation of self-education in our homeschool, which we’ve practiced since 1997. By choosing this way of education, each child is honored with a customized education that allows them the time and space for their pursuits tied to their life purpose.

in less time eliminating the unnecessary. I used to be buried under laundry from my family of 8 with baby and toddler in tow until I created an easy system that eliminated not only the backlog of laundry and work but also the continual stress. We owe it to our children to bring them up learning how to manage everyday life with ease freeing up time and space for doing what we really love. 6. Work on your own personal development, be a student with your children. Top athletes and corporate executives never stop improving their game. They employ trainers, coaches and mentors to propel their success. Don’t negate yourself. Raising the next generation is the foundation of the world which provides the momentum of advancement. The legacies we are building and creating now, in this moment depend on our personal development and leadership abilities. We must be able to lead ourselves and become the models for our children to mirror. The home is the natural incubator for this when the parents take on their own studies, read daily and develop in knowledge and skill the children are empowered in their own endeavors. I’ve seen parents emerge into doing great works, grown right at home alongside homeschooling their children. It’s your responsibility to be the best “you”; you can be to fulfill your life’s purpose. Homeschooling is the greatest gift parents can give to their children while building a legacy and making a real difference in the world. Don’t let it get buried under laundry, relationship battles and stress. Create a lifestyle of learning and be inspired to love more, live more and learn more.

5. Prioritize, streamline and delegate. Taking care of daily needs and the work necessary to sustain life are managed best by a system of prioritizing, streamlining and delegating. Mothers are especially guilty of taking on too much which creates irregular mealtimes, mountains of work not to mention undue stress. Being home each day with a houseful of kids can be the perfect opportunity to get more done


September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook



Creating Our Own Opportunities By Vicki Bentley, HSLDA Toddlers to Tweens consultant


mom confessed she was feeling isolated and frustrated in her remote area and asked for suggestions to help get things moving in her local homeschooling community. So what’s a parent to do? I lived out in the country during our homeschooling years, so I understand how isolating home education can be, especially if you don’t have a family large enough for built-in sports teams or your own Bible quiz league! When we bring our kids home, we often find a need to provide opportunities for our children to feel connected. We have a list of suggested activities for groups in the Practical Helps section of our Group Services pages at But you don’t have to be the leader to do these; just invite folks from your local group or local area to join in! For example, my family coordinated a game night once a month, giving the teens a safe environment to gather for board games, chatter, and snacks each month. It was very informal—we just announced a date/time and asked kids 13 and up to bring a soda and snack and their favorite board game. Sometimes we threw on a pot of hot dogs or fired up the grill. Since we lived “out a ways,” we invited whole families, but we parents and younger kids congregated elsewhere so the teens didn’t feel that they had to always be in the midst of the adults. That level of trust (with oversight, of course) led to their including us—kids vs. parents—in many of the games. At Christmas, we invited everyone to our house for gingerbread house decorating. I mixed up a huge batch of icing and we built the actual houses in advance so the mortar could dry overnight. On decorating day, folks brought gumdrops, M&Ms, Twizzlers, sprinkles, and other decorating candies. They decorated their houses as families; while the houses dried, we ate Christmas cookies and sang carols.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


The next year, we hosted “Christmas Around the World” and asked each family to bring a dish from a specific country and share some traditions from their selected country. Some students dressed in the traditional garb of their countries or brought small gifts representative of the country. One family, whose children are all preschool age, had recently moved from San Antonio so they shared southern Texan traditions, since “some folks say Texas is its own country anyway.” We enjoyed many regional treats, including tamales from Mexico/San Antonio; pizzelles, biscotti, and lasagna from Italy; and Swedish meatballs served by Isabella, dressed in her handmade Saint Lucia costume! Another mom invited middle school and high school kids to read a book in a specific genre, then come to her home to talk about the books they read. Nothing formal—she didn’t even make them stand up to tell about their books. It was simply conversational, in the living room, followed by snacks. The genre changed each month. If there’s a field trip you are interested in for your kids, set it up and invite a few others to join you (you were going anyway!). If you do an experiment, post to your group’s email loop to see if anyone wants to come. Check out “Fun and Games in Your Homeschool” (http:// or “Holidays as Unit Studies” ( for more creative ideas. And the events don’t all have to be educational: Have a family to supper or lunch or dessert. Invite a child or two for a play date. If it’s the moms who are craving fellowship, consider a covered-dish breakfast once a quarter. The goal is to build relationships.

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Also, look for needs within the group to help meet. Plan service opportunities for the kids or families. Need help finding a local group? Check out our support group listing, or consult your state organization’s website for a list of local groups. This doesn’t always mean you have to plan things, either— you can simply piggyback on other activities. For example, maybe a local choral society is putting on a community sing event of Handel’s Messiah—invite a few families to go, too, and then maybe meet somewhere afterward for hot cocoa. Or if a local museum is having a homeschoolers’ day, publicize it and offer to carpool or caravan, or meet with your picnic lunch there. Find the dance school or tae kwon do class or swimming pool or recreation league event that is homeschool friendly and let folks know. Just small things….But they add up to great opportunities!

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September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook



Classroom Organization 101 A

n organized classroom not only helps teachers feel less stressed, studies show it also promotes better learning. From organizing your space to supplies and papers, here are some tips to keep things running smoothly.

Organize Paperwork Don’t get lost in a pile of paperwork! Set up a file system on your desk using four categories: To Do, To File, To Read and Pending. For students, create baskets where they can turn in completed work and assignments, keeping that paperwork separate from your own.

Plan Ahead and Be Colorful Keep a to-do list and prioritize tasks by labeling them A, B or C (with “A” being the top priority and “C” the least). Organize materials needed for class each day using colored file folders and storage boxes.

Get Students Involved Opt for portable filing solutions that kids can use to store and easily access writing journals or portfolios. They’ll learn responsibility and it can help you save time!

Go Vertical One thing many classrooms don’t have is a lot of storage space. Invest in a shelving system like InterMetro™ Shelving that is easy to assemble/ disassemble. A tall unit (measuring 74”) can provide generous storage since it uses a lot of vertical space that is otherwise wasted with low shelves. Use the top shelves for storing items you don’t access regularly.

Think Clearly Choose clear boxes for storing supplies so there’s no guessing what’s inside. Also label them so you know where things should be returned. Stacking boxes will maximize what space you have inside a cabinet or on a shelf.

Uniformity is Good If you have multiple types of large boxes for storing units or seasonal items, consider changing over to just one. A uniform look, particularly for large boxes that are out in the open, goes a long way to create a sense of order in the classroom.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


Tithing is a Spiritual


Condition of the Heart Take my silver and my gold: Not one mite would I withhold...~Take My Life and Let it Be 

~ Frances Havergal 1874

By: Richele McFarlin


of faith and trust. Money certainly should be handled privately have a little girl who loves to draw. When she draws a between you and the Lord. Don’t let money come between picture that she feels is her best attempt, she announces, you and God. If you struggle in this area, then pray and ask “It’s for Daddy.” When he walks in the door, she excitedly the Lord to direct your heart toward cheerful giving. Trust rushes to give him her best picture that day, complete with “I God with your money. love U, Dad.” Daddy doesn’t need to see the picture to know You trust Him with your eternal salvation. Don’t you think it is perfect. What he knows is that she did her best, and she He can handle your finances? (Dear sisters in Christ, this wanted him to have this piece of her heart. writer is also talking to herself, as we all need a heart check Do I rush to church on Sunday morning with my tithe, every now and then.) complete with love in my heart? Excerpted from Overwhelmed Hope and Help for When I headed off to college, my father gave me a credit the Financially Weary featured in this month’s Product card in case of emergencies. My father has A1 credit. I was Spotlights. quite thankful to have the card. It may have had my name on it, but it was under my father’s account. If I ever used it, I made sure it was a wise purchase, and, no matter what came, it was paid on time and in full. From Start My paycheck may have my name on it, to Finish but it came from God’s account. It is one way God cares for me. Do I spend it wisely You Can and take God at his Word? Do It . . . There are times I will give out of Let Us Help. duty, because my husband asks for the checkbook, or because I had to talk LIGHTHOUSE CHRISTIAN ACADEMY myself into it. All instances have one AN AFFORDABLE CHRISTIAN HOMESCHOOL ACADEMY thing in common: a disobedient heart. If I am on a spiritual low, I do not have a A.C.E. Curriculum (Mastery-Based, heart to give. Tithing is a measure of your Individualized, Self-Instructional) obedience to God. Do you ever stumble Experienced Christian Academic Advisors in this area? Servicing K-12th Grade Students Some do not give because they feel they cannot afford it. Some do not give because Free Diagnostic Testing they do not trust how the church will use it. Free Online Standardized Some simply feel the church has enough Testing for Levels 4–12 Where the Scriptures money and that God does not need their Annual Graduation Ceremony Remain Paramount mite. If you have a heart to serve the Lord, Fully Accredited Programs then a heart to tithe follows. What causes LCA is a division of Accelerated Christian Education Ministries. you to withhold what is God’s from God? For more information, visit us at Money is a touchy subject. It’s private or contact us at 866-308-2197. business. Yes, and yes. It’s touchy because Lighthouse Christian Academy does not discriminate against members, applicants, students, we don’t like to admit that we make selfish and others on the basis of race, color, gender, or national or ethnic origin. decisions or that a part of us does not fully trust God. You see, tithing is an expression SM


September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook



When Hundreds

of Thousands Came to Christ

By: Sarita Holzmann


hat happens when a nation crumbles morally? When substance abuse and corrupt politics rule the day? When the people turn from God and seek pleasure in violent sport, gambling and womanizing? When children have to fend for themselves on the streets? When the rich abuse the poor? In some sense, both England and France were in



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

this position in the 1700s. Then England saw peaceful, sweeping reforms, while France spiraled into a horrific revolution. I know I’m simplifying history here. But what was the difference between these two nations? I just read a compelling argument that John Wesley likely initiated the stunning change in England’s trajectory.


Once John Wesley experienced a true â&#x20AC;&#x153;heart conversionâ&#x20AC;? to Christianity, he studied the Bible, preached it, and lived it. He preached in open-air settings to the working class poor, on their way from the factories to the drinking houses. He taught the Bible to illiterate women and children. He visited those in prison. He set up programs to teach job skills to the needy. He urged the rich to care for the poor. He worked to end the Statue of John Wesley African slave trade. In short, his words and deeds proclaimed the Word of God. And in His mercy, God brought revival. God used John Wesley, along with coworkers George Whitefield, Charles Wesley and others, to reintroduce the Bible to the common people of England. As Vishal Mangalwadi puts it in The Book that Made Your World: How the Bible Created the Soul of Western Civilization: â&#x20AC;&#x153;[Wesley] believed that Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s purpose for him was to open the Word of God for his nation, pointing men and women to God through Christ. This, in turn, would reclaim their homes, towns and country from paganism and corruption. Wesleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s central understanding of Christianity was that individual redemption leads to social regeneration.â&#x20AC;? When ordinary people heard the Gospel preached and saw it lived out, they turned to Christ. When they turned to Christ, their whole lives changed. They gave up their drunkenness, cared for their children, cared for the poor, began to treat others as people made in the image of God. And thus, â&#x20AC;&#x153;England after Wesley saw many of his centuryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s evils eradicated, because hundreds of thousands became Christians. Their hearts were changed, as were their minds and attitudes, and so societyâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;the public realmâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;was affected.â&#x20AC;? Wesley did not follow God half-heartedly. Nor was he a superhero. Instead, he simply sought God in earnest, preached in earnest, and served in earnest. He and his trainees adhered to a strict schedule: â&#x20AC;&#x153;eight hours a day sleeping and eating; eight for meditation, prayer and study; and eight for preaching, visiting, and social labors.â&#x20AC;? And thus, he worked on behalf of the English people. And God worked wonders. Wesley even inspired the younger William Wilberforce to devote his life to the abolition of the slave trade. Wesleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s life reminds me that God uses ordinary people to change the world. I am concerned about our own nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s directionâ&#x20AC;ŚOut-of-control spendingâ&#x20AC;Ś Inefficient welfare systems that do limited goodâ&#x20AC;Ś Huge lobby groups profiting from their pet projectsâ&#x20AC;Ś A devaluing of marriageâ&#x20AC;Ś Children bouncing around from one foster home to anotherâ&#x20AC;ŚThe murder of precious unborn children. But God could use you, and me, our children and our grandchildren to change things. Even one person can change the direction of a societyâ&#x20AC;&#x201D;one person committed to God, to hearing from Him and spending time in prayers, coupled with a vision to change society for Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s glory. May we be people who fear not, but focus on what brings God glory. May we choose discipline and a heart sold out for God over the comforts of stability and material accumulation. And may we be an example for our children. So that when God is ready to use them, they are ready to serve. May Godâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Kingdom come!




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September / October 2013 | ŠThe Homeschool Handbook


The Himalayas




The Global Glaciers...

!The word, Himalayas when translated means ‘the abode of snow’ or home of snow. !75% of the country Nepal is covered by the Himalayas. !The Himalayas, although not the longest mountain range in the world, are the highest mountains in the world. !40% of the world’s population depend upon the water that comes from them for their very survival. !FACT: 110 of the Himalayan peaks exceed 24,000 ft. !The Himalayas cross six countries, Nepal, China, India, Bhutan, Afghanistan & Pakistan. !The Himalayas are home to Mt Everest the world’s highest mountain at over 29,000 ft. First climbed in 1953 by Sir Edmund Hillary & Tenzing Norgay. !Another famous peak in the Himalayas is K2 or Karakora. !The Himalayas are the third largest source of ice & snow in the world after Antarctica and the Arctic. !The are about 15,000 glaciers in the Himalayas.

“What we do today will determine how long the world’s ice caps survive. ” Glaciers are ancient rivers of compressed snow and flooding, whilst millions of others will experience they are the world’s largest freshwater reservoir. Today, widespread water shortages & drought. glacial ice covers approximately 10% of the world’s So although temperatures around the world, are land. not much higher than they were in the last ice Global Warming Glaciers are essential to our planet’s wellage, what we now know is, that man’s frenetic Refers To The being for they help reflect the sun’s energy or rapid growth when combined with other Increasing Volatility or heat. Reflecting the sun’s heat helps to factors like the burning of fossil fuels like oil, & Unpredictability reduce the adverse or negative effects of gas and coal has worked to increase or Of The World’s global warming. exacerbate what scientists call global warming. Weather But as our planet grows warmer, our polar ice For as these vast freshwater reservoirs melt, sea caps will melt, the mountain glaciers from Africalevels will not just rise but will warm. For water, Kilimanjaro to Europe and the Alps will gradually unlike ice, absorbs heat and this warming will add to the disappear... The melting of our planet’s glaciers & ice problems associated with a changing climate.. If you caps will lead to a situation where millions of people would like to know more about climate change and across the world will be affected by catastrophic global warming, why not get in touch.

Polar Facts...

The Arctic is in the northernmost part of earth and is home to the North Pole. The Arctic covers an area of nearly 5 million square miles. The Arctic is different to the Antarctic as it is connected to Europe & Canada. The Arctic is home to 400,000 indigenous people and has a population of almost 4 million. The Antarctic is the southernmost continent on Earth and is a rocky mass covered in ice.



© 2012/13

The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013

The Antarctic or South Pole is colder than the North Pole. Although there are no camels there, Antarctica is classified as a desert!!! As no plants grow in the inhospitable Antarctic, the animals that live there are all carnivorous. Penguins are only found in the southern hemisphere. The Arctic, is home to many animals including the polar bear, reindeer, caribou, arctic hare, wolves, walruses, narwhal, killer whales, foxes & seals .


Say Hi:©

Trouble At The Top...

The Siachen Glacier or the ‘place of wild roses’ is home to a major battle...


The Siachen glacier in the Himalayas is the world’s second-longest non-polar glacier and is the world’s highest battleground. This 20,000 ft ice fortress, has been at the centre of a war between India and Pakistan since 1984. Disputes over land and territory are nothing new, however staging a war on a glacier is not without problems. The war on Siachen sees soldiers having to endure life at a rather chilly -50 degrees Celsius, and so far, this frozen battleground has seen over 5,000 people die. Yet no end is in sight as neither side will give up the fight to own the rights to Kashmir. If You Have An Interesting Fact Get In !FACT: Glaciers are the world’s Touch largest fresh water reservoir. !FACT: 10% Of the land on Earth is covered by glaciers !Greenland, part of the Arctic, contains 12% of the world’s ice. !Glaciers store about 75% or 3/4 of all freshwater. !The Antarctic is the most significant glacier as it holds 60% of the planet’s freshwater. The word glacier comes from the French word for ice, ‘glace’

Incredible Global Glaciers...

The Earth’s Polar regions are cold because they do not get any direct sunlight

Antarctica and Greenland may well be home to the world’s largest polar glaciers But glaciers can be found almost everywhere... 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

The Baltoro Glacier in Baltistan, is the world’s longest glacier The largest glacier in the Alps is the Aletsch Glacier In Iceland the Vanajokull Glacier covers 8% of the country New Zealand is home to both the Fox & Franz Josef Glaciers Perito Moreno Glacier in Patagonia is not just a vast glacier it is the third largest source of fresh water in the world. 6. The Hubbard Glacier is North America’s largest tidewater glacier. 7. In Austria there are 925 glaciers and the the largest is the Pasterze Glacier. 8. Siachen Glacier in the Himalayas is the second longest non-polar glacier in the world. (See trouble at the top) 9. Harker Glacier can be found on South Georgia island in the Atlantic Ocean 10. Mt. Kilimanjaro Africa, is home to an incredible array of glaciers many however, are under threat and in the past 100 years over 80% of their surface area has been lost!!! The Furtwangler glacier is the most notable of these disappearing icons.


© 2012/13


!Did You Know? The ice in Antarctica is over 4km or 2.5 miles thick. !FACT: You can find glaciers in 47 countries. !In the last 150 years over 110 glaciers have disappeared from the Glacier national park... !Alaska, Is home to approximately 100,000 glaciers... !In Peru, The Yannamerey glacier has lost almost a 1/4 of it’s total area in just 50 years. !The longest glacier in Alaska is the Bering Glacier which is over 100 miles long... !The biggest glacier in the world is the Lambert glacier that can be found in Antarctica. ! In the Andes, the Patagonia ice fields of both Chile & Argentina are showing signs of rapid thinning! AMAZING FACT... The largest range of mountains in the world are actually at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.... Say Hi:

Columns By: Colleen Hoenicke

MATH U SEE CURRICULUM REVIEWS CURRICULUM REVIEWED: Math U See Delta What is Math U See Delta? Delta introduces the student to Single and Multiple-Digit Division. Division is presented as the inverse of multiplication. Single-digit division facts are learned and the concepts of division and place value are applied when solving long division problems.

Is Math U See Delta easy to use? The additional Application & Enrichment pages in the Delta Student Workbook help students develop a deeper understanding of primary concepts of division (e.g. with discussion of division word problems and what remainders might mean) as well as covering new concepts such as angle measurement.

My child’s experience with Math U See Delta: We have used Math U See for Beta and Gamma and loved it. It was only natural with us to use Delta. My son is a special needs child that takes a bit to catch on to things. This was not a problem for him using Delta. Since he had learned and mastered his facts so well in Gamma, Delta went well for him. I love the hands on blocks for him, and he liked to watch since he is a very visual learner. The lessons were very well explained and he understood well. I would highly recommend delta for any child that struggles with math.

CURRICULUM REVIEWED: Math U See Epsilon What is Math U See Epsilon? Epsilon covers basic operations with fractions. Fractions are presented in an intuitive way with visual explanations of equivalent fractions, common denominators, and fractions and numbers larger than 1.

Is Math U See Epsilon easy to use? Additionally, fractions and operations can be illustrated using Math U See’s proprietary Fraction Overlay manipulatives. These manipulatives visually illustrate fraction concepts and make them easier to understand, especially for the visual learner.

My child’s experience with Math U See Epsilon: I love the fact of the fraction overlays. Although they were intimidating at first we caught on quickly and it makes learning fractions fun and enjoyable. The videos were confusing at times; however, after watching the lesson a couple times we caught on fast. I am so thankful to Math U See for providing such a great product for my very visual hands on learner. I love the extra practice sheets and how you can move on at the child’s pace. Some of the lessons he struggled with but it was not a problem with the extra sheets, we just worked on them and in no time were able to move right along.



The Homeschool Handbook | September / October 2013


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September / October 2013 | ©The Homeschool Handbook


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Minecraft Game or Educational Tool? Why Essays Matter How Do I Introduce my Homeschooled… Achieving Cognitive Balance Homeschooling Your Family of All Ages… Creating Our Own Opportunities Classroom Organization 101 Tithing is a Spiritual Condition of the Heart When Hundred of Thousands Came…

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Mail to: Brilliant Publishing, LLC 9034 Joyce Lane Hummelstown, PA 17036

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My Father’s World High School

A Biblically-based curriculum that prepares your high school students to boldly declare their faith

My Father’s World’s complete high school curriculum is written to meet high school graduation and college entrance requirements. This independent study, parent-directed program integrates Bible, history, and English, providing a strong academic program with a focus on helping students mature in their understanding of a Biblical worldview. Year 1 includes history from Creation to the Greeks, a verse by verse reading of the Old Testament, and literary analysis of ancient literature while learning to write a strong argumentative essay.

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for family learning through 8 grade th

for high school students

Year 3 covers U.S. history to 1877, U.S. government, and a detailed study of Biblical worldview used to analyze early American literature. Year 4 completes U.S. history to the present with economics, modern American literature, speech, and a practical study of spiritual disciplines including prayer, Bible study, and Scripture memorization.

for younger children


Year 2 studies church and world history from Rome to the present. Students read the entire New Testament and write a traditional research paper plus ten other types of composition in response to classic literature.

Add our recommendations for math, science, foreign language, and electives for a complete high school curriculum that will help prepare students to impact a culture that is rapidly moving away from a Biblical worldview.

S e e t h e Wo r l d T h r o u g h G o d ’s E y e s

The Homeschool Handbook September /October 2013  

Because Education Matters

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