Free Fun in the Sun

EPIC Summer Bucket List

Are you looking for some free, fun ways to have fun in the sun this summer?

EPIC Homeschool Network has come up with a fun family activity to help you decide what you should do this summer with a game within a game.  Here’s how it works.  Print the EPIC Summer Bucket List game-board and play Tic-Tac-Toe as you normally would.  One person is “X” and the other “O”.  Try to get three in a row horizontally, vertically, or diagonally.  Whichever three activities are in a row at the end of the game are the three activities you will do as a family.

Click HERE to Download the Game-Board

Don’t let the summer pass you by without having some fun!

How to NOT Have a Boring Summer

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School is almost out for a lot of homeschoolers and traditional students and whether you homeschool year round or take the summer off, one thing you don’t want to do is have a boring summer.  You remember those summers as a kid!  I know I do.  I remember being in my home from sun up to sun down watching television all day long.   It was… boooooooring not to mention mind numbing!

So how do you overcome the pitfalls of a boring summer when you yourself are exhausted from a long school year (or might even have to work)?  Here are 5 simple steps.

 

Make a Plan

Talk with your kids (not at them) and find out what they want to do for the summer.  As you talk with them listen and negotiate as necessary around your budget of money AND time.  For example, one of my children wants to learn to swim, play the violin, learn to sew and… well after that point I kinda tuned out.  While my budget of time and money did not allow for everything she wanted to do, we made a compromise.  We will go to the pool twice a week so she can get comfortable in the water and I will teach her to swim and I will find a sewing class.

Schedule It

Unless you schedule the activities you will not execute it.  Let’s face it, it’s summer, who wants to schedule anything in the summer but this is key to not having a boring summer.  Schedule the FUN!

Be Balanced

Don’t take on more than you can chew.  There’s a reason I zoned out when my daughter kept going on and on about what she wanted to do.  Yes the days might be longer but your endurance is not so be balanced and don’t over-schedule.  Allow wiggle room, after all it is the summer.

Be Consistent

Whatever you say you’re going to do, do it.  By practicing consistency now it will help as you transition back to the school year in the fall.

Be Present

Put the phone down during your time together with your children doing whatever it is that you planned to do.  I have found that when I have my phone in my hand while doing something my kids wanted to do it was as if it never happened.  I was not really present with them so it did not really matter.  So don’t cancel your time by using your phone, tablet or other smart handheld device.

So there you have it.  Five tips on how to NOT have a boring summer.  What are some of your tips?

In our next post  we will discuss some ideas of low cost fun things you can do to not have have boring summer.  Stay tuned!!

 

Happy Memorial Day

Happy Memorial Day

As we pause to celebrate Memorial Day, remember the families left behind by the sacrifice of men and women who died in active duty while serving our country.  Thank you for their service.  Thank you for their sacrifice.  We salute you!

HELP! I Don’t Know What To Do!

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Have you ever said those words? I know I have and Dr. Libby Hodge, an author of “Identity and Destiny for Amazing Kids,” a mother of 5 and grandmother of 6 beautiful grandchildren, has some suggestions to help you when you are at your wits end.  In her article Dr. Hodge highlights three steps to take control: pray, stay calm, and create a plan.  Sounds simple enough but she takes it a step further in each step.  One of the things I found most intriguing is a parenting plan.  A parenting plan?  Who thinks of that!

Click on the following link Help I Dont Know What to Do to read more about what Dr. Hodge has to say on the topic to find some relief to your stressed out life.  You can also find out more at http://amazingkidsbylibby.com/ .

Filling the Summer Months

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Sponsored Post by Club Z Tutoring

For many children, the summer months can be a time of boredom, filled with long hours of mindless video games and unimaginative television watching.   Studies have shown that students can lose anywhere between one to three months of learning over the summer break, especially in the areas of math and reading.

With state budgets stretching barely enough to fund remedial skills, students who otherwise depended on summer school courses for accelerated or enrichment classes may, too, find themselves out of luck.  Other children will depend on daycare as their only means of recreation.  Shari Smith, Area Director of Club Z! East Cobb’s location, explains, “Parents keep expressing concern that their children will have nothing to do and nothing to learn over the summer.  They are looking for affordable alternatives.  Fortunately, Club Z! can help.”

The tutors at Club Z! In-home tutoring understands both parents’ and students’ frustrations and know that continuing education over the summer break is the key to a positive school year ahead.  It is a chance for children to master important skills or to further explore areas of interest in a fun, creative way, with individualized attention.

Summer tutoring with a Club Z! teacher will:

  • rebuild self-esteem that was battered by bad grades from the previous school year.
  • close the achievement gap by helping students catch up and get ahead before the start of the new school year.
  • prepare high school students with the strategies, skills, and confidence to take upcoming ACT and SAT tests.
  • reinforce skills for children with learning disabilities, who might otherwise lose skills from a 2-3-month separation from formal learning.
  • provide money-saving enrichment and accelerated learning opportunities outside of traditional daycare.
  • enable students to master benchmarks necessary for passing state reading, writing, and math standardized tests.
  • allow kids to explore and develop the skill areas they find interesting, such as art, music, foreign language, and more!

Club Z! summer sessions offer uninterrupted, individualized tutoring as often as parents choose — 2, 3 or more times a week.  Club Z! also offers in-home tutoring in all core subjects, including reading, math, science, as well as instruction in study skills, music, computers, SAT, ACT and other assessment test preparation.

Find out more about how Club Z! can enhance your child’s summer by visiting our web site at:  www.clubztutoring.com or by calling 678-214-3510.   Ask how your child can receive a free session of tutoring!

 

 

Teach Them Diligently

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It’s not too late to register for the Teach Them Diligently Conference which is May 11-13, 2017.

To learn more or register go to https://teachthemdiligently.net/homeschool-conventions/atlanta-ga/ use promo code ANDREA to save $5.

Your family will love the camaraderie, energy, and encouragement of this Atlanta, GA homeschool event. There is something for everyone– moms, dads, children, and teens– and there are special sessions and opportunities specifically designed for those families with special needs. Attendance at our homeschool events are diverse! You will see large and small families, as well as veteran homeschoolers and those still praying about getting started — and everyone in between! Your family will fit in perfectly!

3 Tips to Wrap Up the School Year

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As the school year draws to a close there are a few things to consider before you put the books away.  Documentation and Next Year.  How will you document your child’s progress?  What will you do next year?

Here are 3 tips to help you wrap up the school year.

Tip 1: Check Your State Laws

Each state has different compliance regulations for homeschoolers.  To find your state rules go to www.hslda.org.  If you live in the state of Georgia our rules are pretty simple. <!– page title – can be overridden by –>   You must do a nationally standardized test in grades 3, 6, 9 and 12 and you must write an annual progress assessment report in each required subject area (Math, Reading, English, Science, Social Studies) for each child. These reports must be kept for at least three years.

If you find that you are not in compliance in an area (i.e. you did not give a national standardized test like the ITBS or Stanford 10) seek to rectify it as soon as possible.  EPIC Homeschool Network, Inc. has testing sessions in the fall and in the spring so contact us to register.

Tip 2: Prepare Your Documentation

After checking your home school laws now it is time to prepare your documentation such as attendance sheet and  report cards.

We have attached some documents that our members have found helpful.

Tip 3: Look Ahead

Don’t end the school year without doing some evaluations on what you are currently doing and look ahead to what you will do next year.  Did your curriculum work this year for all of your kids?  Why or why not?  What will you change?  When will you start the year?  Check out our Tips for Navigating Homeschool Conventions for a free curriculum budget worksheet.

If you are homeschooling high school students you need to ask your child, “What are your future career goals?”  If the answer is “I don’t know” then think about some summer experiences to expose your child to different careers.  If their answer is in one or more areas, that is great!  Look up the top 5 schools in each area and what their requirements are for home school students.  You do not necessarily need to have an “accredited” diploma to enter college, however, some schools do have special requirements.  If  in doubt, accredited diplomas always makes it easier, check out North Atlantic Regional High School at  http://www.narhs.org/.  They will evaluate your child’s course of study and issue you an accredited diploma.  There is a charge though so sign up early!

After you have wrapped up the school year, now it’s time to take a break!  You have earned it.

What are some things you do to wrap up your school year?

 

Cobb County Support Groups

Name of Support Group: EPIC HOMESCHOOL NETWORK, INC.

Email: info@epichsn.org

Website: http://www.epichsn.com

Description: EPIC HOMESCHOOL NETWORK, INC. is a community designed to enrich, enhance and empower home education in the community. We have an Annual Awards Ceremony, Yearbooks, and offer Scholarships to purchase materials for your home school. We currently meet twice a month but are considering moving to meeting on a weekly basis. Join the network and stay connected.

Counties (Georgia): Cobb, Douglas, Paulding

Dues/Fees Required: Yes

Participation Required: Yes

Our Group Meets: Bi-Monthly on Thursdays


Name of Support Group : Better Dayz Homeschool Cooperative

Email: betterdayz617@gmail.com

Website: http://www.betterdayzcoop.com

Description: Better Dayz is an African American homeschool cooperative located in Cobb County, GA. Majority classes offered are enrichment classes taught on Wednesdays from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m., catering to ages 3 – 18 years. Each session is 8 weeks.

Counties (Georgia): Cobb

Dues Required: Yes

Participation Required: Yes

Our Group Meets: Weekly on Wednesdays


Name of Support Group: Heritage Homeschoolers

Email: HeritageCobb@gmail.com

Website: http://HeritageHomeschoolers.org

Description: HeritageHomeschoolers.org is a local support group for black homeschool students and their families in Cobb County, Georgia. We strive to create a sense of inclusive community, belonging, and relationship for black homeschooled children, their parents/caretakers, and other homeschool families who share this vision.

Our group meets regularly for enrichment activities, field trips, play dates, family events, and Mom’s Nights Out.

Activities are determined based on the needs and desires of the group with each family having opportunities to plan events.

While the Marietta-area of Cobb County is our home base for meetings, we have activities throughout the county and explore all of Greater Atlanta on our field trips, so Cobb County residency is not a requirement for membership.

Counties (Georgia): Cobb

Dues/Fees Required: Yes

Participation Required: No

Our Group Meets: Various days throughout the month (year-round)