SOCIAL MEDIA

24 June 2020

Including Dad in the Homeschool Day - Enter to Win Amazing Books from Sonlight!

I don't know how it works in your family, but sometimes, in mine, we realize that dad is a little bit out of touch with what's going on inside the homeschool.

Wait, what grade are the kids in? Which curriculum do we use? Who's Charlotte Mason? What's a living book? Where did all the snacks go? Why are the remains of science experiments strewn throughout the kitchen? Is the subjunctive mood a real thing, or did you just make that up?

This lack of connection is not intentional!

Dad is very pro-homeschooling, and wants to be involved, but he has a full day going on at work, and we have a full day of learning going on at home, and sometimes it can be hard to find the places where these two days intersect.


Even if dad isn't the primary homeschooling parent, it's worth taking the time to find a way to get him involved.

When dad feels like he knows what's going on in the homeschool, he's more likely to understand the educational needs of your kids, to be able to help during times when mom needs a little extra back-up, and to take more ownership of the homeschooling journey.

You don't want dad to be brushing off homeschooling as simply something that you and your kids do while he's away at work. Homeschool will be most effective when the whole family is not only on board with the concept of homeschooling, but actually involved in the day-to-day details of homeschooling.

Dad Needs to Feel Welcome In His Family's Homeschool


My top suggestion for getting Dad involved in the homeschool day is to find a topic that he can personally connect with, and ask him to get involved in leading your kids on a learning journey on that topic.

This is the same sort of concept behind "interest-led learning" which some homeschool families use for their children. They use a natural connection that the child has with a certain topic as a jumping off point to take them on a learning journey. If my son has a love for elephants, I can use that as a starting point and build a unit study around elephants, including literature, math, learning activities, geography, and eventually start branching off into other topics. Before your child even realizes it, they've made enough connections with previously unknown topics that you now have other potential passions and interests that you can explore in future studies.

You can use exactly the same idea to get the parent who has historically not been very involved with the homeschool to get 'hooked' on the homeschool life.

Obviously, the exact topic is going to look different for different dads. Sitting down and having a discussion about what sort of topic he would be interested in teaching is a good conversation for mom and dad to have.

Once a topic has been chosen, if dad has not been involved in homeschooling before, it will probably help if mom points him in the direction of a couple of great resources to get started with, and then lets him take it from there. If you have truly chosen a topic that he personally connects to and gets excited about, the rest should come easily.

Dedicate and protect a space in the schedule where Dad can take the lead in teaching this subject, and see what might blossom as a result of getting him involved!

What This Looks Like in Our Homeschool:


In my own family, I realized that a topic that would be a natural connection for my husband would be a study of Central and South America.


My husband's family is from Mexico, and my husband works as a Spanish teacher. He's spent a good deal of his life studying the Spanish language and the cultures of Central and South America, as well as teaching them at his work. Why not bring his work home...but in a way that is actually fun!

Textbooks and maps and memorization of countries and capitals have their role in education...but so do stories! This collection of stories from Sonlight begin to capture the imaginations of both parents and children as they can spend evenings reading together reading stories, building a shared memory of these books that they have read. The stories are memorable, but what's amazing is that they spur even more investigations, and more learning, as my husband has the opportunity to look up more information on the regions and events that take place in the books, and to find video footage of the natural wonders in these countries. 



It's important to me that 'storytime' is not something that happens with "mom" alone. I believe that when children see that both mom and dad are truly "together" on this topic, that both parents value and participate in books and educational activities, that children will grow up to value a culture of investigating the world around them, and seeking to be learners at all times.


This particular set of books includes fiction and non-fiction, at a variety of levels, so you can pick and choose which reads suit your own family at your current stage of life and learning. It includes stories from long, long ago, and stories of people who lived in the 20th century, as well. It even has a coloring book, perfect for little hands who would like to stay busy while dad reads about the Mayan civilization.

Would you like to win this collection of fiction and non-fiction books to begin your own exploration of Central and South America? Whether this particular topic is a topic that either Dad or Mom connects with more than the other, it's a fantastic region of the world to begin exploring with your children, and this set of books from Sonlight is a great way to get started. You can have hours of reading material to dive into--for free! Would you like to win this exact set of books for your homeschool library?

Simply follow this link learn more about the giveaway: Sonlight's A Literature-Based Introduction to Central and South America

Your can enter to win this set of books right by clicking HERE to go to the giveaway widget.

How does Dad get involved in your homeschool? What methods have you found that truly work for your family? 
04 June 2020

Six Months with Baby

And just like that, half a year flew by. But we always say that, don't you?

My Glen, you are going to have some very interesting moments in history recorded in your baby book.

Size: At his six month appointment, he weighed in under 15 lbs, and I can't say he's just "long and lean" either because while his weight has hovered around 5th-3rd percentile, his height is usually 1st percentile or below. He is a tiny little thing, and that is so cute and different after my extra-chunky Cyrus. The few people who have seen him think he's about the size of a 3-4 month old, that's the general impression he gives, and I have friends with 3 and 4 month olds right now who are heavier and taller than him. It's been fun having a tiny baby! He's in 4-6 month clothes although pants are still 0-3 month pants.


Eating: I started feeding him baby food the day he turned six months. It took him a little extra time to get really solid head and neck control so I didn't want to start early. He has since turned into a solid food monster and loves solid food more than milk, I think...we shall see if this chunks him up any. He actually really likes scrambled egg and banana, both foods that Cyrus utterly rejected.

We took a video of some of his first foods:




As you can tell, he hates avocado. Which I don't mind, because that means I don't have to share my avocado.

Sleeping: He is not a great sleeper. Cyrus woke up about 3 times a night to eat until he was weaned, but he never played at night nor just stayed awake crying. This one has night when he'll do both. But last night, he only woke up twice to eat, and there were no 2-hour midnight parties, so I'm calling that a win. Let's work toward more nights like that.

Milestones: He got his first two teeth since he his six months. He army crawls at high speeds across vast distances.



Which is hilarious, because since he's so little, he looks like a 3 month old crawling all over the place. He loves playing with toys, especially Cyrus's toys, not the baby toys. He thinks his brother is the funniest thing in the world, and big brother loves to oblige his entertaiment needs by jumping up and down so that baby will laugh at him. So far, he's not a big fan of daily storytime, he just wants to be on the move. He will put any piece of hair on the floor in his mouth, so he requires a very clean environment, haha!

So grateful for six months with Glenn!