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#90 Recommendations for offsite hotels, timeshares, rentals, etc.

Posted by Robin Harrison Axelberd on 11 February 2013 - 04:35 PM

Hello friends! 


I thought I'd introduce myself - I'm Robin and I live in a suburb of Atlanta. I homeschool my four boys, ages 14 (almost 15), 9, 6, and 5. We are very excited to be making our second family trip to Disney in the Fall. :D


I am an obsessive Disney planner - complete with spreadsheets and lists. But, I'm by no means a pro and I am always so excited to learn something new. The size of our family necessitates that we stay off-site, so I can answer some questions about that. Let me just go ahead and say, I think it's the way to go if you have a family the size of ours!


I look forward to sharing the excitement over this upcoming trip with y'all!




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#4740 May I ask...Why do YOU homeschool?

Posted by TegaCaySchoolers on 01 May 2014 - 06:45 AM

Dianna hit the nail on the head! All day long at school my dd was in trouble for....TALKING to her friends! The nerve of her! 


No talking in the hall

No talking in line

No talking at your desk

No talking at lunch

Quiet in the library!

Save your questions for the end!

No talking in the bathroom, be out by the time I count down from 20

No talking during recess if you didn't finish your morning work

Silent bus today!


It's recess time! You have 10 minutes to talk, hurry up!


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#4724 May I ask...Why do YOU homeschool?

Posted by Dianna on 29 April 2014 - 11:31 PM

Stephanie, there are ways to deal with the quizzing issue and non-supportive friends detailed here: http://www.carolinah....com/afaq6.html


As far as the socialization question goes - the next time someone asks you that, ask them how many times did they hear "We're not here to socialize!" when they went to school. Just sayin...



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#4647 May I ask...Why do YOU homeschool?

Posted by kohlby on 24 April 2014 - 05:19 PM



I can give my children a better education than the public/private schools can thanks to being able to tailor their curriculum to their needs/interests/strengths.  The elem school near us is one of the best in the state, even recognized nationally, but that doesn't mean it's the best for my kids when I can homeschool them.  I am glad we have such a good school near us though, for those who do not homeschool.


That's the short answer.  I stumbled into homeschooling when I realized that public kindy wouldn't work for my eldest wiggly boy who learned out of order.  He was far ahead in application and analysis, but way behind in memorization.  He wasn't a checklist kid.  I didn't send any to pre-k since those programs weren't play-based enough.  (Which is also why I'm not a fan of public kindy).  As he's progressed, his behavior has changed to a point where he could handle public school - but his education needs have become much, much harder to meet.  And so we homeschool! 


I also like sleeping in, seeing my kids, not fighting with car line, not worrying about homework, not worrying about teaching to the test or standardized testing, and being able to go on vacation when we want.  It's also a huge plus that we can get everything done during the day normally, so we can just enjoy being a family when my husband isn't working.


*Also, I'm a former public school teacher.  So I know nothing magical happens in the classroom.  I was a good public teacher and did meet the needs of my students, the best I could.  But when you have 35 kids in a class, it's impossible to tailor it perfectly for every single student, no matter how good of a teacher you are. 

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#4374 New to homeschooling for 2014-2015. Need advice.

Posted by Beth62442 on 04 April 2014 - 01:40 PM

Welcome, Melissa G!  

I get the anxious thing!  (I'm sure I"m not alone too!)  I just pulled my oldest out of 7th grade public school in the middle of the school year and started homeschooling him in January.  It sounds like we have a similar situation.  He went from being a child who packed his own backpack full of books, crayons and paper just to sign up for preschool to a sullen, angry, disillusioned 12 year old.  He's never been happier since we pulled him out.  It hasn't been easy - we have days where we just can't stand to be in the same room as one another... but for the most part, I've gotten a lot more hugs, kisses and "I love you"s and he's beginning to love learning again.


It sounds like you already have a great setup, and you've already been homeschooling without even knowing it!  Getting started is scary, (I personally am obsessed with researching curriculum) but the thing I love most about homeshooling, is if you try something and it doesn't work, it's easy enough to switch!  Knowing how your kids like to learn is important (kinesthetic, visual, auditory, etc) and there are sooooo many choices (which is why I'm obsessive about curriculum) that it will make your head spin.  Personally, I found reading reviews to be just as confusing as helpful, because what works for one family won't necessarily work for another.


If you're already taking care of all those animals and running your own homestead, being organized must be second-nature to you, and that will help.  Keeping track of lessons, recordkeeping, etc. all takes time and organization.  And I know you're probably thinking - I'm swamped already - but when you're not having to deal with the issues public school drops on your doorstep, you'll be amazed at the extra time you get!  (Don't know what kind of schedule your son had, but mine was having between 2-3 hours of homework every night - even on weekends.  Not dealing with that every day gave me plenty of time for lesson-planning and grading papers.) 


I will also be homeschooling a kindergartener this fall (as well as a 5th grader too).  Frankly, the one that scares me the most is the kindergartener - making sure he has a good foundation and praying daily that I will be up to the task!


I know one of the hardest things my 7th grader had adjusting to was his schedule at home.  He was under the impression that he would send a set amount of time on each subject every day -- just like public school.  So, if at the end of 45 minutes, he hadn't finished an assignment - he'd just quit (even if he'd spent 15 minutes staring out his window at the bird feeders).  I explained the freedom he had now that he was at home - if he didn't have any trouble understanding the work and could finish it in 20 minutes - GREAT!  If not, we could take and hour to really get it down.. and if we were frustrated beyond belief - we could skip it til tomorrow.  Setting goals and accomplishing them has been our main focus -- not making sure he's busy for 45 minutes in each subject each day.  Some days we do math first, some days history.  Some days its a struggle to get him to do anything, other days he can't wait to read a particular history assignment or do a particular science experiment.  One day a time (or sometimes one hour at a time - LOL!) has become my mantra...


Sorry that I've rambled... I'm on a super-caffeine rush today :)

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#854 Park Planning/Schedule Worksheet

Posted by Dianna on 26 June 2013 - 01:00 PM

Robin, I am too! I create a calendar with all the info, updated crowd predictions, classes my children are registered for, etc., and print out several copies to take with me (in case I lose one). I'd be lost without it! (Mostly because I'm over-40.) ;)

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#8402 Beginner questions

Posted by SouthernBelleMama on 05 November 2014 - 04:07 PM

Hi all! I am brand new to this site, and I am so relieved to find out the feeling of being overwhelmed is completely normal! (I thought perhaps I should post, as I went on a "like" spree, on almost every response here! lol) My son is 4, will turn 5 in January, and I really feel that homeschooling is best for him. After finding this site, and Carolina Homeschooler association, I really feel much more confident in my decision, and myself! (I was really having feelings of thinking there's no way I'm "smart enough" to completely-from-day-1 homeschool, and how-in-the-world-am-I-ever-gonna-teach-myself-to-know-what-paid-teachers-know...but after reading all the info on this site, and reading posts like this one, it really, truly helps!


I'm sorry to hijack this thread, I apologize, I am just so excited, and relieved to finally feel like I'm on the right track, both for me and my family. :)

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#6998 Beginner questions

Posted by kohlby on 23 August 2014 - 10:32 PM

I jot my plans down in a student planner. (Or fill in as they get done).  Like Dianna mentioned, attendance gets done easily this way too.  It's very simple.  I use a student planner because I want my children to take some control of their education and it's helpful if they can write things in too.   I like the weekly/monthy ones from Blue Sky.


For a portfolio, you just need some samples of the work.  Not all - just some.  You can put in a few photos of projects/field trips if you wish.  Or lists of books read, etc.  It's up to you! 


You do not need to do standardized tests under most option 3 groups.  (Though I read one group that did have it at one time - but that's very rare.  Just don't pick one that requires it!)  No professional evaluation is needed under option 3 either.  I do write up some sort of evaluation of student progress twice a year and stick it into the portfolio.  This can be a report card or just a summary.

As for what the state "accepts," the state doesn't look for specifics of how we kept records, and in most cases - will never ask to see our records!  Still keep them, as it is the law and it's best to be covered just in case.

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#6957 Beginner questions

Posted by Dianna on 22 August 2014 - 11:13 AM

There are different ways to document educational activities, attendance, keep samples for a portfolio, etc. Once your membership is completed, you'll have access to my members area and there are forms you can download to keep track. (Or you can develop your own system.)


When you get a chance, read through my Record-Keeping & Testing FAQs here: http://www.carolinah...eeping-testing/


Under Option 3 in SC, you don't have test or submit test scores.


It's completely normal to be overwhelmed and scared at first, but it does get better. I think you'll feel better after you read my FAQs (the one I linked above, and also my Beginning Homeschooling FAQ here: http://www.carolinah...omeschool-faqs/


Reading through all of them is helpful, but those two will probably help the most right now.


Let me know if you have any other questions.




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#6106 Be an Outsider!

Posted by MJL on 25 July 2014 - 06:59 AM

For those doing the Outsider Program there is a Junior Ranger Program for the children. The State Park website has the activities that they have to complete. It is really simple and the children get to earn a Junior Ranger Badge and some prizes. 

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#5007 Anyone homeschooling in the Mount Pleasant SC area?

Posted by vickiw on 14 June 2014 - 01:39 PM

We are in Mt. Pleasant as well. 5 kids- 19 yr at C of C, 17yr girl, 13 girl, 8 girl, 2 boy

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#4979 May I ask...Why do YOU homeschool?

Posted by Rickeyd53 on 10 June 2014 - 06:03 PM

I to am new to home schooling.  I am the grandparents and guardian of two grandsons, one 14 who is autistic and ADHD and one 15 who has his challenges as well and is also ADHD.  They both have been bullied in the public schools with no real assistance from the school system.  We, my wife and I will give this a shot and the boys are really looking forward to this.  Thank you for your responses, makes me feel a little more at ease.

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#4938 Homeschool Hours & What Counts

Posted by Dianna on 29 May 2014 - 11:06 AM

Weekends, summers, midnight star-gazing and interesting discussions, catching an unplanned TV special on the Civil War, or NASA, or black holes, or the Great Depression, or whatever, counts. If you're on a trip and listen to audiobooks in the car, that counts as reading/literature. If the books touch on science or social studies topics, then they count as that, too.


Learning happens 24/7, 365 days a year. Your challenge is to remember to document it for 180 days out of those 365, starting on June 1, and running through May 31 (if you're a member of my 3rd option association).




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#4937 Homeschool Hours & What Counts

Posted by Maria Bassett on 29 May 2014 - 10:56 AM

And it doesn't have to be in a neat 9-3 school day either!  My husband wants in on this, and he already reads with them each night and like to do projects after dinner.  Building an RC car with Daddy, while he teaches them about friction, after dinner, totally counts.  I'm planning to save a lot of the science and some of the reading stuff for Daddy!

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#4930 Option 2 or 3, what's the difference?

Posted by Dianna on 28 May 2014 - 08:20 PM

Angela, Options 2 and 3 both refer to associations, and both provide the same legal avenue for us homeschool without having to register with the school district. Option 3 was introduced (and passed) in 1996 by homeschooling moms because Option 2 was too restrictive (provided for only one association, so we didn't have any choice other than registering through the local school district).


The vast majority of SC homeschooling families use Option 3 associations because most don't require testing, are budget-friendly, and allow parents to choose their own curriculum without having to approve it. Also, Option 3 mandates that parents maintain their own records, so there's less paperwork, which leaves more time to focus on learning.


I hope this helps. Let me know if you have any other questions.



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#4929 May I ask...Why do YOU homeschool?

Posted by Angela Armstrong on 27 May 2014 - 12:25 PM

I'm new here and wanted to thank everyone for the info! I've learned so much from this message board and it's really helped the anxiety I had.
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#4897 Advanced Student Grade Placement

Posted by ShadanJem on 20 May 2014 - 08:38 AM


Learning is a journey, not a race, and college is a totally different social scene. Over my 20+ years of homeschooling, all of the parents and students I've known personally (public, private, and homeschool) who've graduated and entered college early have regretted it. I'm sure there are others who didn't/don't regret it, but I don't know them personally.

 Okay - I'll throw in my hat here.  I'm one of those who did start early, at 15.  Texas Academy of Math and Sciences at University of North Texas.  Benefit - there were 2 years of students there, 200 Jr and 200 Sr living in a dorm, so I wasn't totally with just 18 year olds in class.  Graduated "high school" with 77 semester hours, and no high school classes for Jr and Sr year (all college, and not easy ones).  B.S. at 19, M.S. from U of Michigan with DOE Fellowship paying for grad school at 21.  Imagine being in grad school, and your class mates having to make sure wherever they were going that you were able to actually get in!  If I went, they had to chose carefully.  Worked as Radiological Engineer at SRS at 21.  


Do I regret it - NO!  Because the school district I was in didn't allow me to advance.  In 10th grade I had finished their math department.  They wouldn't let me dual enroll.  Freshman and Sophomore English were a repeat of the same books I had read in middle school in Michigan (military dad so we moved).  


And yet....I do NOT want my kids to go off early.  Eldest will go off a few months before he turns 18 (current plan - rising 9th now).  He will probably dual enroll some classes his last 3 semesters after he turns 16.  But that will be to allow him to have more free and fun time in college.  I never took fun classes.  I never explored other options.  I want them to experience a little more of life than I had the opportunity to do.  So, fun jobs, summer camps, internships, volunteer work, teaching at the karate dojo (which he loves).  I did raise him up to 8th this year, but with an end of Sept b-day it wasn't a big deal.  In Ohio where he was born he would be finishing 8th this year.


I debated doing the TIPS program with DS, and then didn't.  I was too frustrated with the smart kid labels as a child that I guess I veered the other direction!

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#4795 Homeschool Hours & What Counts

Posted by Laura Launius on 05 May 2014 - 09:29 AM

That's the great thing about homeschooling is that learning doesn't have to fit in a box :)   Bike riding, swimming, bowling, litle league, youth basketball, gymnastics and dance classes --- that's all PE for us.  Music lessons, art classes, etc. all count as part of school too.  The nice thing also is that by high school those same things can be part of your electives :)

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#4778 Advanced Student Grade Placement

Posted by Dana on 03 May 2014 - 10:45 AM

In my opinion, I think that you should focus on providing more indepth learning experiences for him rather than advancing grade levels. As homeschoolers, you have the flexibility to teach him at his level, wherever it is. If he really wants to graduate early and go to college early, then you can, of course, have him take the SAT or ACT and talk to the colleges about him enrolling at a younger-than-typical age. But if it were my child, and I wanted him to be a child (as you stated above), I would use this time to provide all the fun and indepth learning experiences as possible while he's still at home. 


I strongly agree with this.


I'm not advancing my son rapidly through grade levels.

He's starting 7th grade next year and I'm deciding whether I'll count algebra as a high school credit, but I'm leaning towards not. It'll go on his hs transcript as courses taken before hs, but I don't expect I'll give a grade.


There's SO MUCH available, we're not going to run out of material.

Midlands Tech doesn't want students under 16 in classes. I might be able to swing it earlier but I think USC would be more likely for dual enrollment. But that's really expensive as well. MIT Open Courses and Coesura are possibilities.


If he pushes to go to college early, you can always accelerate. It's tougher to drop back grades though.

You may want to do some reading on the Well Trained Mind forums Accelerated Board as well.

But unless your son is racing forward, dragging you behind, I wouldn't try to get him in high school early.


You probably will want him to participate in talent searches... Duke TIP, NUMATS, and CTY are all programs that are available. USC has a PUPS program for kids in TIP.


Start slow.

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#2931 My Son Is NOT stupid - Fed up mom needs help!

Posted by Laura Launius on 06 February 2014 - 12:17 PM

Hi Kristina;


Welcome!  I can't speak to pulling out of school but I can tell you that I had one wiggly, extremely gifted, but w/ ADD-inattentive, dyslexic and dysgraphic little guy go through the public school system.  But, we are talking about a different time - before Common Core -- and when parents were still invited into the public school classroom to help out.  The problem for my ds was that he was bored - he hated writing - knew the material presented through 4th grade as a K5er.  The schools solution was to bump him up a year, have me send in extra material, have him help tutor the other kids, send him on errands, never take away PE or recess (then they still had 2 recesses) and let him do a lot of his work orally.  Middle School and High School were different birds and we had to figure out ways for him to get the material to them.  All that to say, if public school is what you want, it can be done, but it will take a lot of work on your part.  For what it's worth the ds I'm referring to graduated high school as an honor student and went on to graduate USC-Columbia. 


Jump ahead and I made the decision to home-school the other three.  In that mix I have two more of the same along w/ one of them having major health problems. When my boys are under the age of 9 I do the majority of their school work sitting beside them helping them to stay focused.  We do short lessons, we don't do tons of review or busy work - we cover the subjects making sure that they know the material but no boring them w/ a drill and kill attitude.  They do handwriting but again we follow a quick and simple method so it's no more than maybe 5 mins and they write some of their math but other parts they simply tell me the answer.  Soc Studies/History we cover history beginning w/ Ancient bec for my boys there is nothing is great as learning about the Egyptians and mummies :)  I throw Soc Studies in by discussing monthly holidays or community helpers, people of noteworthiness , etc.  but I don't spend a ton of time on it.  For science we read and explore nature and do experiments -- bec my boys tend to be hands-on and benefit from touching, seeing and exploring.  Spelling we use magnets and I don't stress about spelling if a child doesn't have the skills until later. 


Your ds is still young - he's curious and wants to be engaged in learning not sitting in a classroom -- that's understandable.  As for your dh's concern -- look at his reasoning and then see what info you can help him to see a counter argument in favor of hsing v the traditional classroom.  It took some doing for me to convince dh, but he's seen the fruits of my labor w/ our kids.  Will it always be easy?  NO!  Do the blessings outweigh the struggles -- I can honestly say YES! 

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