Getting Started Again

By Kyndra Steinmann One of the great joys of homeschooling is its flexibility–but that is also one of its great dangers.. When life gets busy, it is often easy to let school–at least some of it–slide. This is especially true…

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Life in the Fast Lane

By Jon Covington Life as a dad is non-stop. One minute you’re at the starting line, the next the gas pedal is on the floor and you’re at 6,500 RPMs. Tires are squealing. Smoke is flying, and you’re shifting through…

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SAT vs. Achievement Test

Q. Does a high school junior who has taken the SAT have to take the end of year test? I read it could replace the test for a senior. A. The SAT is not the same as a standardized achievement…

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SAT® and ACT® Test Difference

Q. What’s the difference between the SAT® and ACT® tests for college entrance? A. Both the SAT® (Scholastic Aptitude Test) exam and the ACT® (American College Testing) exam measure college readiness. A high school student who is planning to enter…

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Loving and Letting Go

by Kyndra Steinmann Has it ever occurred to you that you could love your children too much? That you could do too much for them and make life too pleasant and easy? That sometimes the best way to love is…

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Sparkles in the Pasta

As dads, we wear a lot of hats during the week. Personally, I wear the husband hat, the business-owner hat, the architect hat, the (slow) runner hat, the grocery-shopper hat, the dog-walker hat, the garbage-man hat, and the homeschooling-dad hat….

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Frontier Culture Museum

Spring Homeschool Day An HEAV-Sponsored Event! Location: 1290 Richmond Road, Staunton, Virginia Date: Friday, May 2, 2014, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Cost: $3/student; $5/adult, if preregistering; $5/student; $7 adult, when purchased at the door Registration: Tickets may be…

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So What is a Chemical Reaction Anyway?

With Valentine’s Day rapidly approaching, it makes sense that our thoughts turn to sweets and treats and good things to eat. However, in order to make sure you don’t ruin your appetite, this time we are going to have some…

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Motivating Teens

Q. How can I keep my homeschool teen motivated? A. Teens–both boys and girls—are motivated by the things they are interested in doing. Think about what your teen likes to do in his spare time. What he’s interested in doing…

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Outdoing One Another in Love

by Kyndra Steinmann One of the hardest things to teach children (or remember ourselves) is that love isn’t a quid-pro-quo thing. Frequently, we interpret the “Golden Rule” as “We should only be as nice to others as they are to…

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Wintry Science – Part Two

                    Two weeks ago, we talked about how to determine if it is cold where you live, and we talked about salt. We talked about why the Department of Transportation puts…

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AP Courses on Transcripts

Q. If I use an Advanced Placement (AP) text, can I call it an AP course and put it on my child’s transcript? A. The term “AP” is trade-marked by the College Board. You can designate a course as “AP”…

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Attending Prom

Q. This is our first year homeschooling, and our eldest son has been told he cannot attend public school events like the prom. Is there a law that allows homeschoolers to participate? A. There is no law that requires a…

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Wintry Science

Is it cold where you live? If you aren’t sure, you can decide by this scale: You leave the house without a jacket. Do you not bother to go back in for one think about going back in for your…

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Transcript and Course Location

Q. On my teen’s high school transcript, should I list the place he took some of his courses—for example, high school courses taken online or at our local co-op?   A. A transcript is a very concise record of your…

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Directing the Waters

I grew up in a swamp. During the American Civil War, General McClellan lost wagons and cannons in the mud of my home county, and while I was growing up we had a constant task of improving the ditches and…

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Being Vs. Doing

I remember when Buggle was about nine months old; he had a day when nothing would satisfy him but being held. I was teaching three days a week and was six months pregnant with Mouse and I did not have…

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Test if Beginning Mid Year

Q. If I begin homeschooling in January, will I be required to test and send in the results by August 1? A. Yes, if you filed a Notice of Intent and begin homeschooling any time during the school year—even as…

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Testing with a Local School

Q. When I filed my Notice of Intent, the school district offered to test my child in the spring with the Iowa test. They said not many homeschoolers use this free service. Is there a reason? A. A few school…

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M&M’S® Minus the “M”

  Have you ever wondered how those little M’s are put onto M&M’S®? Okay, maybe you wonder about other things—like how to get the kids to clean up after themselves or what you are going to fix for dinner—but here,…

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Testing a Young Child

Q. I have a young first-grader with a short attention span. Can you suggest a test that is acceptable to my school district? A. All standardized tests are acceptable; it is up to you to decide which test you would…

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Rainy-Day Math for Rambunctious Kids

Oh, the winter doldrums! The weather is cold, the ground is likely muddy, or it is raining for the third day in a row. The wonders of the inventions bin have been exhausted and the energy level is off the…

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Autumn Chromatography

Have you ever wondered what makes leaves change colors in the fall? How do the leaves suddenly change from green to yellow or red? Where did those colors come from? Well, wonder no more–today we will find those colors! Materials:…

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Turning Hindrance into Help

One of the hardest things in a family with many little ones is figuring out how to incorporate everyone into the work of the household. It’s not too hard to train the older ones, but then the younger ones want…

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Religious Exemption Moving Within the State

Q. Our religious exemption has been recognized by our school board, but now we plan to move to another city in Virginia. Do we have to go through the religious exemption process again? A. No, your school board complied with…

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It Melts in Your Mouth and Your Hands, and…

by Michelle Crooker This experiment is pretty simple—it only requires one thing, and that one thing is tasty! Now, before we get too far, I do want to tell you one of my science rules. I tell this to all…

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Religious Exemption Form

Q. I mailed a religious exemption letter to my county school board, and the superintendent responded by sending me a religious exemption form to fill out.  Must I provide both a letter and a form? A. The law does NOT…

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The Inventions Bin

by Kyndra Steinmann   One of the wonderful things about homeschooling is the way it enables me to give my children the gift of time—not just time with me and time with each other, but time for discovery and creation….

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Praying for Our Children

by Julie Mendez There are a million things we could pray for our children, and probably should. But I just love this verse I read tonight and how it makes me think of my kids: I have not stopped thanking…

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Date of Birth Required

Q. My superintendent’s office says my child’s date of birth is required for their database. Does the homeschool law require that I provide this information? A. The homeschool law does not require parents to submit a child’s date of birth…

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