Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Homeschool Curriculum

Classroom Curriculum

Enki Education is a unique and innovative approach: a multicultural, homeschool curriculum. For parents and teachers we offer consultations, conferences & discussion groups.

Homeschool curriculum weave together many diverse elements in order to support our fundamental premise: the central task of education, whether in the classroom or homeschool, is the integration of body, heart, and mind within each child. The result is the cultivation of educational excellence, confidence & competence.

This individual wellbeing is inseparable from the wellbeing of the communities of our lives – families, neighbors, the global community. For this reason, we have developed a Classroom and Homeschool curriculum in which the children can see their own strengths & struggles reflected in all peoples, and can experience human greatness in all, regardless of nationality, race, or religion.

homeschool program

Physical Education for Homeschool

Ideas for Physical Education in homeschool.
One concern many people have in homeschooling is physical education for homeschooled children. The good news is that homeschooled children have a far greater chance of being more physically active than their peers.
Unfortunately, PE is rapidly dissapearing at many public schools. Couple this with far busier schedules for more children, and you will see why many children are not getting adequate exercise.
Here are a few ways to enhance Physical Education in your homeschool.


Play, in and of itself, is exercise. This is particularly true for younger children, like preschoolers, kindergarten, and young elementary ages. Lots of playtime, both inside and outdoors, is an important thing for young children. Make sure they have plenty of free play, where their imaginations soar and their bodies are busy. Take some time to play with them. This can be working on specific skills, like catching a ball, or just playing tag.

Fitness Centers

Be sure to check with local fitness centers (this includes exercise centers and gymnastic centers). Many are realizing that hosting a Homeschool PE class is a great way to make money during the day. These classes can really vary, so be sure to find out the details. The drawback is that these can be quite expensive. The positives are a group setting, fun equipment, and new skills.
If your budget allows, you can also get a family membership to a local gym. Many are adding activities and classes for all ages. Again, they are expensive, but this is a good option for those that can.

Local Classes and Sports Teams

If you live in a city or larger area, your town may have classes offered. Some of the local Parks and Recreation departments may be persuaded to offer a homeschool PE class, if there is enough interest. These classes may lack the bells and whistles of fitness gym classes, but they are great for learning skills, meeting friends, and staying active. The best part - the price is usually much more modest.
Getting involved in a sport is another great way to add to your Physical Education at home. Some areas actually have homeschool leagues, but "regular" leagues are great, as well. Playing a sport is exercise, and also offers many personal challenges.

Area Schools

Depending where you live, you may have the option to partner with your local public school for some subjects. If so, PE may be a great way to take advantage of this opportunity.

Do a Marathon

How long is a marathon? 26.2 miles, to be exact! A marathon is a great goal for getting healthy, and you do not even have to run it! A wonderful organization called Marathon Kids holds Marathon programs for Elementary aged children. Homeschoolers are welcome to enroll as well.
Even if this program is not available in your area, you can still do this, and the whole family can be part. Buy each person an inexpensive pedometer to keep record of how far you have gone. Make a committment to walk, and then...go for walks! Set a family goal for the date of the end of your marathon. Make each person a simple chart to keep track of distance walked. After every walk, have each person record how far they have gone. Keep going until you reach 26.2 miles, and....you just did a marathon! (One note - distance walked should be intentional walking, and not just playtime).

Make Your Own Class

In the spirit of homeschooling, do it yourself! Get to together with a few other homeschool families and have a PE class. You can find a lot of resources on the internet. Consider a solid grounding in traditional schoolyard games, like kickball. The Ultimate Homeschool Physical Education Game Book by Guy Bailey is one possible resource for games and lesson ideas.
Whatever route you take, be sure that all physical activity is an advantage to your child. Most of all, get out there, be active, and have fun!

homeschool help

Here is some questions that many people asking across the web. I tried to group some of them to the one post here.

Q: What are some homeschool supplys? I homeschool my 7th grader now.
A: Get some suggestions from teachers. Buy textbooks for each subject that your child will be learning now.

Q: Yeah I am starting homeschool but I want to know is there any good online places to get a legit ged Thanks.
A: Do you want a GED or a diploma...if you want a diploma try: www.americanschoolofcorr.com www.pennfoster.edu These you have to finish certain classes, and then you get your diploma.

Q:I go to American Homeschool of Correspondence and I need help in english lit and geometry can anyone help me in these subjects and helping my check me answers
A: Do you have teachers there or is it just written work? Distance learning had come so far now! You can attend online homeschool programs like The MorningStar Academy and get teachers who will help you at the click of a button. Check them out at www.themorningstaracademy.org. It's really awesome!

Q:My mom wants me to be homeschool, i told her that i would love to be homeschooled, but the problem is, is we have no idea what we need to do to be able to have me homeschooled, im a 9th grader in highschool, if there is anyway that you can please tell me how, or give me a link on what we need to do that would help me a lot thanks.
A: My daughter was in a program offered by the school district called home study. She met with a teacher once a week at which time he gave her a lesson plan. She would complete the work and he would check it at the weekly meeting. If she was having difficulty he would help her. She was also able to meet with him at any time to discuss any problems she was having. She went from a below average to a superior student. Check to see if your school district offers such a program.

Homeschool portfolios

Homeschool portfolios are an important and convenient method of recording homeschool progress and organizing information. The following will assist you in creating, maintaining and presenting your homeschool portfolio for assessment and evaluation in Maine.

What is a homeschool portfolio?

A homeschool portfolio is a collection of material to showcase your child's learning.

Why is a homeschool portfolio needed?

Maine's Chapter 130 "Rules for Equivalent Instruction Programs" requires an annual assessment of homeschooled students. Parents can choose to either have their child tested or present a portfolio for review and acceptance. The portfolio can be presented to a certified Maine teacher or a homeschool support group whose membership includes a certified Maine teacher. Most parents choose the portfolio review option. Keeping a homeschool portfolio not only helps to comply with the law but also aids parents and children in recording their progresses and accomplishments. A portfolio is also an important record for entry into school or college or obtaining a high school diploma.

What kind of material does a portfolio include?

There is no right or wrong way to create a portfolio. The materials contained in a portfolio are decided by the parents and child. Material chosen should be varied to reflect what the child has learned, experienced and accomplished. Suggested items to include are:
A journal which notes activities and progress
A list of resources such as books, computer software, games, toys and outside classes.
Samples of the child's work including letters written to friends and family (photocopy these before they are sent), poems, stories, songs and other forms of creative writing, drawings, audio tapes of singing, talking, reading aloud, or playing a musical instrument, video tapes of a dramatic performance or musical talent, and any text book or workbook pages.
Photos of field trips, artwork, projects and family life.
Brochures and booklets from field trips and other activities.
A list of books that the child has read. Include the title and author.
Goals for the year.

When should a portfolio begin?

A homeschool portfolio should start being prepared at the beginning of the homeschool year. A notebook can be used for a journal. Begin by collecting samples of work, organizing them by subject. Take pictures as your child reads, plays, dances - anything you'd like! Take pictures at field trips and of your child's projects and creations. A photo album or scrapbook can be used to organize the pictures as well as brochures and other paper items. Clear see-through sheet protectors are also an excellent way to collect and store work samples and brochures. A few goals for the year can be noted as well as a list of the resources that will be used. These can always be modified during the year as needed. Now is a good time to begin a list of books read, if chosen.

What kind of maintenance does a portfolio need?

Portfolio maintenance should include regular journal entries and an ongoing collection of work samples, photos and whatever else you wish to include.

How can a portfolio help to comply with Maine's Quarterly Assessment requirement?

Maine's Chapter 130 requires a plan for a quarterly assessment at least four times during the homeschool year. This quarterly assessment is a time for parents and children to reflect upon their progress and accomplishments from the past few months. No written assessment or review is required. A journal entry to note observations can be made.

What should be done to prepare a portfolio for the Annual Assessment?

One goal of maintaining a homeschool portfolio is to meet the legal requirement for an annual assessment. The portfolio review option for the annual assessment involves presenting the homeschool portfolio to a certified Maine teacher for review and acceptance. A local homeschool support group whose membership includes a certified Maine teacher may also conduct group portfolio reviews (or portfolio evaluations, as they are sometimes called).

Preparing for a portfolio review involves sorting through all of the material that has been collected through the year and deciding what contents will best reflect the homeschool year. The purpose of the review is to provide a general overview of the homeschool year, demonstrate that the child is engaged in homeschooling and that progress is being made. The certified Maine teacher or homeschool support group (as mentioned previously) is required to review and accept the child's progress through the presentation of the homeschool portfolio.

The portfolio review is often a time of excitement. Parents and children often love to talk about what they have been doing at home. It might be helpful to write down a summary of the items you wish to highlight during your year before the review, like if your child learned to read or master a skill. The review should not be used to pressure, judge or ridicule but rather to listen, learn and support. It is not necessary for children to be present for the review but many enjoy sharing their accomplishments and progress with other homeschoolers and the review is a perfect opportunity to do so.

Upon acceptance of the portfolio, the certified Maine teacher needs to give the parent a signed letter verifying that the portfolio was reviewed and accepted. Make two photocopies of this letter - send the original to the Maine Department of Education, a copy to the superintendent of the local school district and keep a copy for own records. When you send the letter to the Department of Education and superintendent, you may also include the homeschool application for next year. This is the only contact you are required to have with the Department of Education and the superintendent.