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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Sailing Away

Oh my goodness, one of the homeschooled kids in our circle just got his boat captain license. I don't know this kid, but I really didn't even know you needed a license to be the captain of a boat. I should have asked how old he was. I wonder if you have to be a certain age. I wonder if he had to take certain classes? I guess licensing makes sense for larger boats. We used to have a boat. Actually, we had two of them when we lived in Seattle back in 1999 but we didn't have any kind of special license to drive it or anything, maybe because it was just smaller. Oh boy, those were the days; I used to love going out on Lake Washignton after work. On sunny days, everyone in the city was out and smiling and enjoying the weather. I read that Seattle residents have a higher average IQ than anywhere else and also that Seattle residents read more than anywhere else. I am convinced it's because of the weather. Picture this; it's raining, and you're commuting on public transportation (otherwise you spend an hour driving 8 miles from Lynnwood to Seattle) and there's nothing else to do but read a book, right? And books make people smarter. It all makes perfect sense.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Being a Homeowner

Guest post from: Steve Delaney

Being a homeowner is tough for a lot of reasons but I think it’s extra hard for us because my husband is an architect so we bought a house that needed a lot of work because he wanted to make it something special. That’s all well and good in theory but you know, I’m pretty sick of living in the middle of a construction zone. I got ADT ATLANTA when I moved in because there were so many construction workers in and out and my husband seems to think that’s progress. I keep telling him that what constitutes progress in my eyes is coming home to a house that’s not full of scaffolding and sawdust! Buying a totally renovated home is definitely something I’m going to do from now on because there’s nothing like not having to worry about all this stuff. But to be honest, I hope we never have to move againsince this particular house has been so much work – my husband doesn’t even get the half of it!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Great way to gather info

I stumbled upon an ingenious way to gather up information, whether it's from your friends, for a little homemade survey but I was mainly picturing the painful task of gathering information form other homeschoolers to plan your field trips, co-op classes and other stuff. I mean, coordinating everyone's schedule can be a pain in the rear end and another difficult task we find ourselves doing is trying to gather up votes about who wants to do which classes at a co-op. I remember one year we had it down to a science for our science club, but one year we had a bunch of members move away and one lady's daughters started a dance class during that time and it just ended up being a big headache to try and get everyone's schedules coordinated enough to come up with a planning meeting, so having a website for making surveys, along with easy to use survey templates would probably have made a big difference. Maybe we will use one this year. What about you? What do you use for group planning? have you ever considered using a website that helps you gather information? it seems to be a really great application of technology.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Exciting Opportunities

When I was a kid, I always wished I could travel off to boarding school or something. The idea of studying abroad seemed so continental. I was just reading through the website of a company that does a study abroad Ireland program and my favorite part, I think, was the student blogs. It's just so easy to imagine yourself sitting there among rolling green hills, enjoying your studies, drinking some hot tea and smelling the green green fields. For miles and miles, the ocean air sweeps up the hillsides and I imagine it's just the cleanest smell ever. I've always been a "grass is greener" kind of person. Not because I'm unhappy where I'm at, just because I like seeing new things and exploring new places. Life is too short to sit still and the world is such a big and beautiful place. So what about you? Have you ever taken a semester abroad? Have you ever thought about it? Is traveling a big part of your life?  I'd love to hear about it. You only live once, right?

Times are changing

Today I read that the top ten jobs in 2010 weren't even invented yet in 2004.  As homeschoolers, this is HUGE. How can schools prepare our children for a world they can't even understand or predict yet? Instead of focusing on specific skills, like proper letter formation and written pages of mathematical "problems" kids need computer training (although for most kids this just means screen time, they don't need us to break it down in complicated ways) and they need flexible, creative-thinking minds that don't get stuck on "old ways" or "tradition"  For our family, this means embracing the fact that we are in a rapidly changing world and we enjoy the technological advances that are made, and we try to balance that with our humanity. Full-body scanners for pregnant women and children... NO, but iPhones, YES.  So what about you? How are you preparing your children for a technology-filled world in the future?  There are just so many approaches, I love hearing them all.