I think it's better to putt-off homework until college. And this is easy to do when you homeschool. Your kids can do all their work at home in a shorter amount of time than the kids at public school. There is no such thing as homework when you homeschool. You make the most of your time. You get it done.
When I went to school we didn't have homework until 7th grade. We had some reports to do in elementary school, but we didn't have homework every night. We didn't carry back packs stuffed with books, we didn't have homework contracts that our parents had to sign. We left our books at school in our desks.
I came home from school and changed my clothes (because we had to wear dresses to school.) I put on my "play clothes" and I played. I ran around outside with my friends. When I got books and homework, I thought I was pretty grown-up. And I took it seriously and did my work.
My first two kids went through public school. I was fully involved with all the parent responsibilities and I knew the rules for homework. Twenty minutes in kindergarten, and adding more each year. When my third child started 5th grade, I was fed-up with some of the silly homework his teacher was sending home. (Please write an essay on how you figured out that 7 x 6 = 42.) I pulled him out and homeschooled him along with his older brother who was in 7th grade. It was my first year of homeschool.
Now this is what I've noticed. My 5th and last child is 17 and has started college. He loves his classes. He loves his homework and even reads the textbook for anthropology.
I think kids get too much homework in traditional school and then they burn-out.
Posted by Deila Taylor at 10:22 PM
This course just started and you can still enroll for free. It has great videos -- this week has skating examples, and a few parlor tricks too. You'll want to watch with your kids. Take a look, try it out. I would say kids from middle school through high school and up will enjoy these. But even younger kids can understand some of the visual examples.
It is called How Things Work
Posted by Deila Taylor at 4:30 PM
Another free history course is just starting up -- online and superior content for your high school students. It's called History 102 -- American Heritage, from Colonial Settlement to the Reagan Revolution. Sign up at Hillsdale College for this online course here.
- "Introduction: How to Think About American History"
Larry P. Arnn
Lecture Available February 25
- "Colonial Settlement"
Lecture Available March 4
- "Enlightenment and Natural Rights"
Lecture Available March 11
- "The American Founding"
Lecture Available March 18
- "Democracy: American Promise and its Dangers"
Lecture Available March 25
- "The Crisis of the Union"
Lecture Available April 1
- "The Gilded Age and the Robber Barons"
Lecture Available April 8
Lecture Available April 15
- "America as a World Power"
Lecture Available April 22
- "The Reagan Revolution"
Lecture Available April 29
I love collecting autumn leaves, but I didn't understand how photosynthesis contributes to the change in color until I did this lesson.
Here's an interactive teaching presentation to do with your kids:
Why Do Leaves Change Color?
|George Washington, by James Peale, ca. 1787-1790|
From Hillsdale College -- Happy Constitution Day -- and enjoy their newest online project, The Constitution Reader Online. It is perfect for teaching the Constitution.
On September 17, 1787—225 years ago today—thirty-nine men signed the new Constitution in Philadelphia. It is the most successful and enduring constitution in the world. Learn more here.
Here are some examples of what you can teach today:
You can also show your students a beautiful painting of September 17, 1787 (The Signing of the American Constitution), by Hillsdale College Art Department Chairman Sam Knecht.
You also find the site’s Study Resources useful:
Explore the meaning and history of the Constitution with your students today!
We completed the Constitution 101 course at Hillsdale College last year, now they have added a second course. This new 10-part online course taught by Hillsdale College professors examines American progressivism: its historical roots and principles; its rejection of America's founding principles and Constitution; its political successes in the New Deal, the Great Society, and in recent years; the ongoing political debate between progressives and conservatives; and the chance of a constitutional revival.
Register for the Constitution 201
Two courses are available, Constitution 101 and 201
101: The Meaning and History of the Constitution
201: The Progressive Rejection of the Founding and the Rise of Bureaucratic Despotism
My 17 year-old is taking a MOOC (massive open online course) at Coursera.org, and I am giving you an update on his progress. This is week 8, and he enjoys the class, the reading assignments and the writing assignments. He looks forward to peer reviews, writing them and reading those he receives. He is going to sign up for another class, and I have signed up for one too. Try one for yourself, or register for the same one as your son/daughter. Let me know what you think about it.
All the courses at Coursera are free, all taught on the campus of prestigious colleges, such as Princeton, Stanford and more. They have a start date and end date, homework, and most have a certificate of completion. Read more here....
I wanted a physics course that had less math and was more about understanding how things work. I found this course offered at UC Berkeley, called Physics for future Presidents. It's hugely popular and is now available online for free. The format is lecture, presented on youtube, but I found the syllabus and have purchased the book to go with it. I hesitated about buying the book, to save money, but decided to go for it and give it a try. The first class video was easy to understand and follow. I think it is important to understand the concepts of gravity, light, energy, and the laws of thermodynamics. This is especially true when you realize that helps you understand the universe and how God works within those structured laws.
Course Syllabus and home page
Here is a sample of the course schedule, from which you can make your own:
Physics 10 class schedule for Spring 2011 (Last Updated 05-Feb-2011 1PM)
|Tu Jan 18||Energy||Bio due|
|Th Jan 20||Read Ch 1||Energy|
|Tu Jan 25||Read Ch 2||Atoms Heat||HW news|
|Th Jan 27||Atoms Heat|
|Tu Feb 1||Read Ch 3||Gravity||HW news|
|Th Feb 3||Gravity|
|Tu Feb 8||Read Ch 4||Radioactivity||HW exam questions|
|Th Feb 10||Nuke Reactions|
|Tu Feb 15||Read Ch 5||Nukes||HW old exam|
|Th Feb 17||Nukes|
|Tu Feb 22||Read Ch 6||Electricity & Magnetism||HW old exam|
|Th Feb 24||Electricity & Magnetism|
|Tu Mar 1||Midterm I Ch 1-5|
|Th Mar 3||Read Ch 7||Waves|
|Tu Mar 8||Waves||HW news|
|Th Mar 10||Read Ch 8||Light|
|Tu Mar 15||Light||HW old exam|
|Th Mar 17||Read Ch 9||Invisible Light|
|Tu Mar 29||Invisible Light||HW exam questions|
|Th Mar 31||Read Ch 11||Quantum|
|Tu Apr 5||Midterm II Ch 6-10|
|Th Apr 7||Quantum|
|Tu Apr 12||Read Ch 10||Climate||HW news|
|Th Apr 14||Climate|
|Tu Apr 19||Read Ch 12||Relativity||HW news|
|Th Apr 21||Relativity|
|Tu Apr 26||Read Ch 13||Universe||HW old exam|
|Th Apr 28||Universe|
You have to try one of these free college courses at Coursera. I would say that ages 13 to 80 will enjoy them. My 17-year old son is enrolled in Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, the Modern World.
The courses start on a specific date, so stroll through the options and see if you find anything. So far, my son is enjoying the class. He has several videos to watch that are posted by the professor, then a reading assignment, then a writing assignment of 270-320 words. Next he reviews peers writings and a few of them review his work as well. That may be the one thing that has some negatives, although some pluses too. It depends who reviews and his level of understanding. But my son loves the videos, the readings, the assignments and reviewing other students.
There's 116 courses from 16 different universities. Its all free, so you won't lose a thing for trying it out.
This is the 10 week course set-up for Fantasy and Science Fiction:
- Every Thursday, a new unit starts with an introductory video from the professor.
- The student has five days to read a novel and then write a 270-320 word essay.
- The essay is submitted on Tuesday and the student receives five random essays to grade and provide anonymous feedback.
- On Thursday, feedback is received from the peer evaluations and the cycle starts over.
The students cover a global network, all ages. It is very interesting.