As a veteran homeschooling mom, I would have loved to have had How to HOMESCHOOL with Stunning Confidence, Contagious Joy, and Amazing Focus (DVD & Coursebook) from Apologia Educational Ministries to help me when I was just getting started with homeschooling.
This amazing course is put together by two wonderful and experienced homeschool moms, Rachael Carman and Leslie Nunnery. In this 15 session video course, Rachael and Leslie guide you through many homeschooling basics and support and encourage you on your homeschool adventure.
Some of the amazing topics covered in this inspiring DVD course are:
- How to Get the Most of This Course
- Setting Goals for the Journey
- Finding Support
- Choosing Curriculum
- Practical How-To’s
- Organizing Your Homeschool Stuff
- Organizing Your Homeschool Day
- Tips from Veterans
- Family Matters-Marriage
- Family Matters – The Rest
- Dealing with Opposition
- High School Graduation and College
- If College is Not the End Game
- You Can Make It
- Continuing Education and Encouragement Opportunities
As you can see, THIS IS GOOD STUFF. You aren’t just getting some homeschool tips and you aren’t getting just some getting started stuff and no follow through. Therefore, I think this course is really for any homeschool parent that is wanting to really think through their homeschooling adventure and the complete journey their family is on. Homeschooling is an Adventures (thus the name of my blog, right) and a journey and this course will really help you think it through.
The 2 DVD Video Course come with 15 chapters (lessons) on DVD with a Homeschool Course book that corresponds with each lesson. You can read through the material before or after watching the video and then answer the questions and do the “homework” to get your homeschool and homeschool journey in order. Each lesson is approximately 15-20 minutes which includes Rachael and Leslie making you feel relaxed, like it’s a personal lesson for you. The teaching conversations are great and seem personal. Then the assignments (homeschool) are short and totally doable, depending upon the depth you need of course. I spent as little as 10 minutes on some and over an hour on another (think organization and clutter).
I got started watching the lessons and working through the homework. Chapter 1 helps the viewer see what the course is about and how to prepare so you can get the most out of the course. This is helpful to get in the right mindset.
Next, you set some Goals. This was good because I have some changes that need to be made this year as we add our 3rd child into the formal education rotation (lightly but added) so it’s good to set some goals.
The chapter on Support is VERY important to new homeschoolers. Every state is different here in the US as to the homeschool laws so it’s important to find support as you navigate your state requirements. Additionally, having other homeschooling mamas to talk to and discuss with is vital to your success. Leslie and Rachael do a great job about talking about support, where to find it, and the kind you need.
I think the chapter on Choosing Curriculum is important. This is where I see so many new homeschoolers struggle and, for some, they just become overwhelmed and either give up the idea of homeschooling or run to “school at home” in a box because they just don’t know where to begin. Therefore, I think this chapter on Choosing a Curriculum is one that should be taken seriously and new homeschooling families should spend some time on. The authors provide some great tools to help assess and narrow down what may work best for you and your students. You can spend a LOT of money quickly if you aren’t prepared and don’t have a plan for your homeschool year so this chapter is important. (BTW – though they do not promote their own Apologia products in the video course, they do have some GREAT products – you can read my reviews on some of their curriculum through the links below.)
The chapters on Organizing are where I needed some focus. I have acquired a LOT of curriculum and books and teaching aids and…and…and… over the 8 years we have been homeschooling so, I have to say, organizing is where I need help. Brainstorm how you want to set up your homeschool is part of the homework. Since we do not have a dedicated homeschool room, this requires some creative organization. But the tips on organizing everything is helpful. I have been on a decluttering kick so this chapter fits right in with what I have going on. I’m still working through this because, well, it takes some time for me. If you are new to homeschooling, and haven’t acquired 8 years of books, curriculum, hand me downs, pass alongs, and supplies, you don’t have as much work to do with the organizing. You can just brainstorm how you want your room or space to look, how you want to organize your curriculum and supplies, and get going.
Getting into the chapters on High School and College were great to think about. I don’t have high schoolers but I’m only a few years away and, let’s just admit it, they go fast. I know my 7th grader will be a high schooler before I realize it. I didn’t spend a LOT of time on these lessons but know I will go back and refer to them later. They would be extremely important and helpful to those with older kids ready for high school or already in high school. The tips and suggestions on what to think about are important and very thoroughly discussed.
Overall (and some tips)
I really think this course is for everyone. There is so much to learn by sitting down with your favorite beverage and “talking” with Rachael and Leslie. As a veteran homeschooler, I feel that I still learned a ton. I had some moments where I was like, “wow, yeah, that’s what I need to do.” And “oh, that’s a great idea!” And I definitely wish I had had something like to work through when I started our homeschooling adventure.
I will state that there is a LOT of information in this 15 lessons course and you will want to get through it all. BUT DON’T RUSH THROUGH IT. Give it the time and attention it deserves. I’m certain your family, your homeschool, your children, and YOU will benefit from moving through the course at a pace that allows you to spend quality time thinks and working through the course.
Homeschooling is a BIG DECISION and this course can help you plan our your homeschool and get going so that you can reap the rewards and set yourself up for success. ENJOY!
Check out the first lesson from How to HOMESCHOOL here and see what you think:
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And see what the rest of the Homeschool Review Crew thought of How to HOMESCHOOL with Stunning Confidence, Contagious Joy, and Amazing Focus (DVD & Coursebook) as well as another great product by Apologia – Internship for High School Credit, by clicking the banner below.
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