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Home Schooling

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Featured Resources


Games for Learning from MIT: Playful Approaches For Building Cognitive Skills and Exploring Science and Math - Games play an important role in the learning process: they provide a safe, creative environment in which children learn to experiment, collaborate and problem-solve. We work with educators to make sure our games tie into their math and science curriculums. The games we develop can be played on computers or mobile devices, and are used both inside and outside the classroom.


Home School Resources Compiled by a Parent - Compiled by Sarah Avery Wojtowicz; Includes Internet Resource Listings, Organization Information, Curriculum Links, Special Needs Resources and Unschooling Information.


Kids Hub - Kids Hub is a fun interactive learning center for elementary and middle school students.


Articles Related to Home Schooling    (top)

In Florida, Virtual School Could Make Classrooms History - Thousands of Florida students may ditch public elementary and middle schools next year in favor of online classes at home -- an option that could change the face of public education. A new law that takes effect next fall requires every district in the state to set up an online school for kindergarten through eighth-grade students. They won't have to get on the bus -- or even get out of their PJs -- to head to school at the family computer.


Free Virtual Field Trips Bring the World into Any Classroom - When virtual field trips began, most of such journeys were underwhelming, but recent technology has allowed the development of impressive -- and free -- adventures. Blue Zones Quest encourages healthy behaviors through scientific exploration of cultural practices, GoNorth! brings students to the North Pole via dogsled, Windows into Wonderland explores the geysers and hot springs of Yellowstone National Park, and National Geographic: Lewis & Clark traces the famous explorers' path from the Mississippi River to the Pacific Ocean.


eBay Prohibits Textbooks for Homeschool Teachers - A new policy by Internet trading behemoth eBay that bans homeschool teachers' texts from its auctions is prompting a tirade of complaints from the company's faithful customers.


Textercise Books are sold as a series of illustrated Master copies in paper format or in .pdf format which can be copied back to back then mid-stapled to make workbooks. When a purchaser buys a set of Textercise Book masters they can produce as many individual books as they wish. The books combine the formal qualities of a textbook with the more informal qualities of an exercise book to produce a “Textercise Book” with spaces provided for pupils to record their answers to the questions asked, to make comments and even to record points made during class discussion. Book topics include: Manners Bullying, Jobs and Career Information, Business and Science. They come in Standard and Simpler formats. Textercise is located in the UK, but ships internationally.

MI Home-Schooled Students Have Opportunity to Take Michigan Merit Examination, Obtain Free ACT Scores (PDF) - Home-schooled students in Michigan this coming spring will be able to take the Michigan Merit Exam, the state’s new high school assessment that includes the national ACT college entrance exam.


AZ 'Unschoolers' Can Learn - or Not - As most schoolchildren are sitting down for their morning classes, Taylor Gavin is just rolling out of bed. "Sometimes I get up at 8, sometimes not until 9 or 10. It just depends," the talkative 11-year-old says. The Gavins are "unschoolers," a small branch of home-schoolers with parents who reject the structured and authoritative nature of today's education system. Some call it "discovery learning" because of its laissez faire attitude.


The U.S. Department of Education's Gateway to Educational Materials (GEM) Web site allows educators to quickly search over 40,000 materials by school subject, grade level, activity type, target audience, stakeholder group, and price. You can look for third grade lesson plans on fractions and decimals, for example. To get started on your search, go to


GA Hybrid Schools Blend Teaching at Home and in Class - On Tuesdays and Thursdays, children file into the tiny classrooms at Victory Academy, where teachers lead lessons in math, reading and foreign languages. On Mondays and Wednesdays, however, those classrooms are empty. The school's 48 students are taught at home. [Login/registration required.]


AZ K-8 Web-based Learning a Slam-Dunk With Pupils - A devoted sports fan, teacher Mark Anderson wanted to find a way to bring the excitement of a big game into the classroom. While watching college football on TV one day, he found his answer.


Online Courses Help Boost Advanced Placement Results - More students are taking--and passing--Advanced Placement (AP) exams in every part of the country, as college-level work in high school becomes increasingly common, the College Board reported Jan. 25. Many state education officials attribute the gains in participation at least in part to online courses that expand the reach of advanced-level instruction.


SD Tighter Monitoring of Home-school Students Rejected - A move to tighten state control over the testing of home-schooled students was rejected by a South Dakota Senate committee Thursday after critics said the measure is not needed.


SD Lawmakers Want State to Monitor Home-school Tests - Two state lawmakers want to ensure that home-schooled children meet the same standards and take their tests under the same conditions as those in formal school settings.


Rural Schools Turn to E-learning - Across the country, E-learning has changed from a technological curiosity to an integral part of rural public school education, offering more class options to students and even educating teachers. Forty-three percent of the nation's public schools-and nearly one third of the country's 48 million public school students-are in rural communities. Now, with the spread of advanced technology that aims to close the "digital divide" and make public education more equitable, groups of isolated schools in more than a dozen states--including Minnesota, North Carolina, and Oklahoma--can share qualified teachers in subjects like physics, advanced math, and foreign languages.


Book & Product Reviews & Recommendations by Home Schooling Mom, Penny Ray    (top)

About Penny Ray: I was a home schooling mom long before I thought I was. You see, my daughter regressed into autism around the time of her first birthday. We began early intervention in the public school system when she was 19 months old and we have always supplemented at home what the public school was doing, always feeling that what the public schools offered was not enough. During this time, I looked for unique products that would help me help my daughter learn at home, (there are many catalogs that sell products for individuals with disabilities and special needs) and one place I never thought to look was home school materials. When I finally gave up on the public schools to begin homeschooling my daughter full time in January of 2008 (my daughter was 8 years old at the time), I began looking at home school materials and learned that I had missed an incredibly rich treasure chest of innovative, creative products and materials. I suspect if I had known the extent of the materials available, I'd have made the leap to full time homeschooling much sooner. I hope to introduce other parents of children with developmental delays to products that will help them, whether they are full time home schoolers, or home schoolers who supplement with services from a public or private school.


Penny's Book Review: Peterson Directed Handwriting
Penny's Book Review: All About Spelling
Penny's Book Review: Puppetools
Penny's Book Review: MotherBoard Books "Let's Make A Web Page"
Penny's Book Review: Trigger Memory Systems
Penny's Book Review: Rime to Read
Penny's Book Review:

Penny's Book Review: Time4Learning
Penny's Book Review:
And Then Mama Said..."It Takes Time To Learn To Read"


Penny's Review: Spears Art Studio - Comprehensive and Customizable—they’re two words I used to describe another recent item, and yet, these words summarize the Spears Art Studio as well.


Penny's Review: One2Believe Tales of Glory Nativity Set


Penny's Review: Clean N' Flip Laundry For Kids: A Fun Step-by-Step Laundry System! - This cute, sturdy, spiral bound, 8.5" X 5.5" flipchart walks children through the process of doing laundry by breaking it down into step-by-step instructions. Complete a step and flip the page. The fun simple pictures make it easy! Makes laundry FUN! Complete a task & flip the page. Boosts self-esteem and organizational skills.

Penny's Review: My Days... My Pictures - This is another adorable book that when finished by your child, will be priceless! Sturdily wire-bound with cute and colorful covers, this book covers an entire year. As the author and illustrator, your child will rightfully be extremely proud of their very own book. You as the parent, will consider it one of life's greatest treasures and for 3 cents a day that is quite a bargain!


Penny's Review: Parent Success Cards
Parent Success Cards are a boxed set of 50 double-sided high quality cards that contain 100 affirmations and reflections for parents, produced by Horizons Developmental Remediation Center, a center that provides RDI (r) or Relationship Development Intervention consultation to many parents of children on the autism spectrum. The cost of $24.95 is similar to the cost of a book about autism, parenting, or one you might find in the self-help section of the bookstore. The cards are the size of an oversized playing card, and can be displayed (one at a time) in a refrigerator magnet picture frame. When my cards arrived, I immediately sat down with the cards and read every one, and found that several spoke to me in a big way. (I suspect that several were written with me in mind! *grin*) The reflections are beautifully written and the cards just as beautifully presented and are designed to prompt thinking and growth. The thoughts on them provide a nice balance between the "big picture" and "what can I do right now?". Since my set of cards arrived, I have held several of the reflections in my mind, reflecting on where my attitude and actions need adjustment, a prompting ideas for new journal entries (when I have time to write). The same quotes would be attractive printed in a parent journal or a week-at-a-glance calendar form. I plan to post one card a week on the refrigerator door for encouragement and reflection or an occasional kick in the pants. If you're looking for encouragement, reflections, affirmations, and an opportunity for growth in your journey on the remediation pathway, I recommend the Parent Success Cards!  The only negatives involve the actual printing on a few of the cards. A card or two has copy printed too close to the edges of the card and a smaller font might have been used. I have to work a little harder to read the one striped card (there is something visually distracting about those stripes!). And some of the font/color combinations make a three or four of the cards more difficult to read than the others, and I suggest that a simple and bold font be used on any dark blue or burgandy background when the 2nd edition is printed.


Penny's Review: The Schoolhouse Planner ($39, 247 page e-book, from The Old Schoolhouse)
The Schoolhouse Planner is more than a school planner; it is a comprehensive tool for planning a year of anything and everything related to your household and home school. Users can download and type into the document and print only the pages needed. There are calendars (year at a glance, monthly) ready to print, and with each monthly section, TSP includes information and resources for academics, teaching helps and ideas and recipes. TSP includes any form you might need for planning or recording data for home or school, including annual plans and yearly goals, progress reports, nature reports, financial planning, Bible study, important date planning, book and audio/video logs, grade reports, gardening planning, gift planning, and chore charts and housekeeping schedules, grocery lists, pet schedules, you name it and it’s there—the list goes on and on. (When I said the book is comprehensive, I meant it!) There are chore pages that use symbols instead of words for pre-readers or children who use visual schedules.
If you need a framework on paper as a way to organize your days and plan your school year, this product has all the tools. The digital copy allows purchasers to print only what they will use. The $39 price tag seems expensive to me in light of printing costs, particularly for those who will choose to print most of the 247 page book (toner and printer paper are not cheap!), however, I believe this one is so comprehensive, this will be the only planner you’ll buy. Allergy alert: For those of us with a child on a special diet, know that many of the the recipes included contain milk, eggs and wheat.


Penny's Review: The Old Schoolhouse Digital Magazine ($16.95/one year subscription)
I have to admit to being resistant to technology when it comes to reading material on a computer screen or new devices (like the Kindle). I subscribed to the print version of this magazine for the first time this year, and dove into my first issue with enthusiasm when it arrived a couple of weeks ago. This particular issue has a special emphasis on home schooling a child with special needs and the content has been very helpful for me as I begin to implement a Charlotte Mason philosophy more at home. If you’re home schooling (and/or supplementing public school specialized education services) a child with special learning needs, this issue is packed with information and ideas from families who walk in our shoes. The digital version looks exactly like the print version I received via US Mail, and is surprisingly (to me, the techie skeptic) easy to navigate. There is a guide to getting started opposite the cover page, and the navigation tools are user friendly. Open the table of contents and you are able to jump to an article with one click of the mouse, which is much faster than flipping through a print magazine. Product information is important to me as I learn about new materials that would work well with my child’s learning style, and I’m happy to report that the links to the advertisers are quick, too, requiring just one click of the mouse to learn more about any product in the magazine. The cost of the digital version is cheaper than the print version, and the idea of storing the electronic version on a flash drive as opposed to storing a year’s worth of print copies is appealing to me as I work to get organized at home. I sense that I may enjoy and soon prefer the digital version of the magazine.

Other Reviews of Interest: Heads Up Helping! Teaching Tips and Techniques for Working with ADD, ADHD, and Other Children with Challenges

Support Groups in Michigan    (top)

Flint Kids - All inclusive group that offers programs, classes, play groups and field trips for children that are both homeschooled and school bound.


Home School Building Connections - Connecting Homeschoolers in West Michigan

Home School Building Connections is a ministry of the Home School Building (HSB). The purpose is connecting homeschoolers in West Michigan with the support, information, activities, and events to help them meet their home education goals. HSB Connections consists of three media, the website, an email list and a monthly print publication.


Home School Building Connections

5625 Burlingame Ave. SW

Wyoming MI 49509

phone (616) 532-9422

fax (616) 532-6274




The Home School Building facility, including 14 classrooms, gymnasium, library, lounge, and offices, currently serves as host to some 1000+ students each week through supplemental classes offered by a number of independent home education associations in West Michigan. Additionally, HSB provides a comfortable meeting place for many area support groups. The gymnasium, which is large enough to house two full-sized basketball courts, serves as the home for many homeschooled basketball and other sports teams. The Home School Bookstore, an on-site retail curriculum store, allows year-round access to a wide selection of homeschool curriculum and supplemental materials.

bullet Families Learning and Schooling at Home (FLASH), Natalie Valle, 21671 B Drive North, Marshall, Michigan 49068 616/781-1069
bullet Older Homeschoolers' Group, 9120 Dwight Drive, Detroit, MI 48214; Lynn Family, 313-331-8406
bullet Hillsdale Area Homeschoolers, 5151 Barker Rd, Jonesville, MI 49250; Linda Kline, 517-287-5565
bullet HELP-Michigan, 125 E Lincoln, Negaunee, MI 49866, 906-475-5508
bullet Home Educator's Circle, 1280 John Hix St, Westland, MI 48186, 313-326-5406
bullet Families Learning and Schooling at Home, (FLASH), 21671 B Drive North, Marshall, MI 49068; Natalie Valle, 616-781-1069
bullet Celebrating Home Under Rome - Catholic Homeschoolers, (CHURCH); Rachel Mackson, 517-349-6389; Maureen Wittmann,
bullet The Homeschool Support Network, PO Box 2457, Riverview, MI 48192; Jackie Beattie, 313-284-1249
bullet Christian Home Educators of Michigan, (CHEM), PO Box 2357, Farmington Hills, MI 48333, 248-380-3611
bullet Belleville Area Homeschool Association, (BAHA), 17719 Odyssey, Belleville, MI 48111; Cheryl Bowles, 734-699-0787
bullet Restoring Education And Cherishing Home Michigan Homeschoolers,
bullet Christian Home Educators of the Blue Water Area, (CHEBWA);,

National Support Groups    (top)

bullet Alliance for Parental Involvement in Education, , PO Box 59, East Chatham, NY 12060; Seth Rockmuller or Katharine Houk, 518-392-6900;,
bullet Alternative Eduction Resourch Organization, 417 Roslyn Rd, Roslyn Heights, NY 11577; Jerry Mintz, 516-621-2195
bullet American Homeschool Association, PO Box 218, Tonasket, WA 98855;,
bullet Catholic Home School Network of America, (CHSNA), PO Box 6343, River Forest, IL 60305; Katie Moran, 330-652-4923;,
bullet Family Unschoolers Network, , 1688 Belhaven Woods Ct, Pasadena, MD 21122
bullet Growing Without Schooling, (GWS), 2380 Massachusetts Ave Suite 104, Cambridge, MA 02140, 617-864-3100
bullet Homeschoolers for Peace, PO Box 74, Midpines, CA 95345
bullet Jewish Home Educator's Network, 2122 Houser, Holly, MI 48442; Lisa Hodge Kander;
Moore Foundation, PO Box 1, Camas, WA 98607, 360-835-2736;
bullet Muslim Home School Network and Resource, , PO Box 803, Attleboro, MA 02703;,
bullet National Association for Mormon Home Educators, , 2770 S 1000 W, Perry, UT 84302
bullet National Association of Catholic Home Educators, (NACHE), PO Box 787, Montrose, AL 36559
bullet National Handicapped Homeschoolers Assn., , 5383 Alpine Road SE, Olalla, WA 98359; Tom & Sherry Bushnell, 253-857-4257;
bullet National Home Education Network, , PO Box 41067, Long Beach, CA 90853,

Rose Rock Inclusive Global Homeschool Network, , 805-942-4465;,

Free Resources for Home Schoolers    (top)

Learning Page is a huge collection of professionally produced instructional materials for you to download and print. Lesson plans, books, worksheets, and much more can be found on the site. Some items require a free membership to view or download.

The Alabama Virtual Library - The Alabama Virtual Library provides all students, teachers, and citizens of the State of Alabama with online access to essential library and information resources. It is primarily a group of online databases that have magazine, journal, and newspaper articles for research. Through the AVL, an equitable core of information sources are available free to every student and citizen in Alabama, raising the level of excellence in schools and communities across the state.


TestPrepReview - is a free service "created to provide free practice test questions for students in a variety of career situations." Includes online review for ACT, SAT, GED, LSAT, GMAT, MCAT, ParaPro, Nursing, and many more.


Collection of Games, Experiments, Projects and Diversions For Parents & Teachers


Discovery Channel's Free Online Teacher/Educator Clipart Gallery - Discovery School now makes it easy to add graphics to your next project, whether it's for home or school. Choose from hundreds of original clip art pieces, including animations!


Sites For Teachers: "The Net's Best resource for Teachers" includes teaching resources, clipart, plus insect, dinosaur, ocean, and animal units.

Homeschooling/Asperger's Syndrome Site "Kids Who Are Different"


At Web English Teacher "educators can take advantage of online technology to share ideas and to benefit from the work of others. Beginning teachers can find guidance; experienced teachers can find inspiration. Think of it as the faculty library and faculty workroom on a global scale. Because the most important part of teaching isn't the technology."


Chart Jungle - Free printable and reproducible charts for use during infancy, the preschool years, kindergarten, and other learning stages. Use the charts provided to help you get more organized in your life and activities.

Sample Curriculum and Plans for Education (SCoPE) Site - The Sample Curriculum and Plans for Education (SCoPE) Site offers practical classroom support to all Michigan education professionals. The site is unlike any other teacher resource now available on the Internet.

ABC TEACH - A quality educational site offering 5000+FREE printable theme units, word puzzles, writing forms, book report forms, math, ideas, lessons and much more. Great for new teachers, student teachers, homeschooling and teachers who like creative ways to teach.


bullet - Free Interactive lessons and exercises, open-ended questions, printable worksheets, challenging problems and more
bullet Homework Help links! Over 250 links to homework help for your homeschooler.
bullet Teaching Activities from Cobblestone Publishing
bullet A whole reading curriculum for K-3rd and a teachers/parent guide, for download and print. Each section of the K-3 is 100 pages.
bullet A reading series K-10 books to download and print. Some have worksheets

Home School/Educational Associations     (top)

bullet National Challenged Homeschoolers Associated Network (NATHHAN) - A Christian-based homeschooling network focused on children with special needs.
bullet American Home School Association
bullet National Home Education Network - The National Home Education Network exists to encourage and facilitate the vital grassroots work of state and local homeschooling groups and individuals by providing information, fostering networking and promoting public relations on a national level.
Home Schooling Curriculum/Resources    (top)

HIS Place for Help in School - HIS Place for Help in School is a site with unique, high-quality resources expressly designed to help parents of children with special needs. You will find links to educational resource sites for many disabilities, links to sites for legal information about special education students' rights and advocacy, and practical help both in links to suppliers and in tips for teaching and working with the special learner.

My Homeschool Store at Buy and sell used curriculum. No fee to list; sellers pay 10% commission on sold items only. Search by keyword, subject, age.


The Global Schoolhouse - Combines smart teaching ideas with web publishing, video conferencing and other online tools that bridge geographic gaps, allowing young people around the world to learn together. Global SchoolNet is a growing international network of educators, who engage in online project-based learning activities.


Experiencia: Program Connects Classroom and Home Instruction Through Immersive Learning for 3rd - 6th Graders - What is Experiencia? Experiencia is pioneering a proprietary learning system, Immersive Learning™, that enhances and connects classroom and home instruction with vivid learning experiences at interactive simulation sites. Experiencia programs transform teaching and learning by brining theory and best practices to life.


Resource from a Parent: "A viable K-12 education is available beyond bricks and mortar to any parent or family who might want to access it. For an example, visit K12 Online Home School."


MI CLiMB - Clarifying Language in Michigan Benchmarks - A Resource Developed by Teachers for the Michigan Department of Education. Provides clarifications, resources, instructional and assessment examples for five content areas: English Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, Fine Arts. To view the Michigan Benchmarks, click here (PDF).

Graphic Organizers:
A graphic organizer is an instructional tool used to illustrate a student or class's prior knowledge about a topic or section of text; specific examples include the K-W-L-H Technique and the Anticipation/Reaction Guide. Other organizers include the Spider Map, the Series of Events Chain, the Continuum Scale, the Compare/Contrast Matrix and several more. You can learn more about these specific examples by clicking here.

Curriculum resource site

Second grade resources, math and language

"Banking on our Future" the first online/offline financial literacy program.

Ampersand Press - Nature games, rubber stamps with nature and ecological themes.

99V Phonics, Reading, & Writing Programs - Children with autism, ADD, dyslexia, and learning disabilities have benefited from the Sound It Out Land CD-ROM. They respond wonderfully to the sing-along teaching songs, colorful talking characters, and engaging reading games.

Critical Thinking Books & Software - For over 40 years, Critical Thinking Books & Software has created and published the largest selection of quality critical thinking products for K-adult education.

Doctor Memory Children's Educational Products - The products introduce and demonstrate powerful methods of memorization that can be applied to other subject matter and everyday life.

Home Education Magazine - Presents free online newsletters, discussion boards, a networking list, and selections from the magazine, including articles, interviews, columnists, resources, reviews and more! - Home School curriculum for the busy parent

Michigan Teacher Network - "Michigan Teacher Network supports Michigan educators in the successful use of technology by providing easy access to information and materials that have been carefully evaluated for quality, relevance, and effectiveness."

National Geographic Society - Catalog of geography resources and several informational magazines.

Stone Soup - This site contains articles, essays, poetry and artwork by kids!

Written Expression Story Starters from Mark Shinn, Ph.D., contains over 100 story beginnings for your homeschooler to complete. These gradually increase in skill level. Click here to view this pdf document.


Cyber Schools     (top)

AZ Virtual Schools Thrive, But Not For Everyone - Virtual public school, which received the approval of the Arizona Legislature last year, sounds much easier than it is, according to a Scottsdale parent whose daughters are being educated that way. "It's not for everybody," Siamak Ghaffari said. "There's an extensive amount of material. Just because you're sitting at home doesn't mean there isn't work to do."


CA Cyber School For Kids Logs In - Virtual academy is state's first for elementary students.


CO Testing Rules Sock Colorado Cyber School - A dispute erupted when the ratings came out on the Branson Alternative School. State officials marked Branson down as one of the worst schools in the state, but angry supporters blame brick-and-mortar rules for artificially depressing the online school’s results. 

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