Free Stuff and Podcasts

A few months back we came across and free math app that we were initially pretty excited about. We saw that it was free daily word problems that were newsy and cross-curricular and, given that most apps are pretty easy to use, we hope that it was something enriching that was also self-directed. And maybeContinue reading “Free Stuff and Podcasts”

Double Pointed Needles versus Magic Loop, an entirely made up (but still not completely implausible) history of sock knitting

I have recently become obsessed with knitting socks. And when I say “obsessed” I mean mostly that I knit a single pair of socks. But I have certainly purchased an obsessive amount of sock yarn and have certainly looked at an obsessive number of images of knitted socks on instagram and elsewhere (who are weContinue reading “Double Pointed Needles versus Magic Loop, an entirely made up (but still not completely implausible) history of sock knitting”

Turing Tumble

This Christmas, Ms6yo Z received a puzzle game called “Turing Tumble“. Like many of the most engaging games and puzzles and educational systems, the idea behind it is simple. In spite of this elegant simplicity, there are a vast array of ideas that she learns and skills that she practices when she uses her TuringContinue reading “Turing Tumble”

The Mouths of Babes

As a homeschooling family, we eat at home a lot. Almost all of the time. And so, what my kids are and are not willing to eat is a central concern for me. It’s something that’s easy (maybe too easy?) for me to monitor. The oldest, Ms 10yo A, has always been a really bigContinue reading “The Mouths of Babes”

"Handwork" or, as we say here, "stuff to do."

Tonight, Ms 6yo Z asked if we could “do stuff in the basement.” She explained saying that she wanted to, “you know, knit and weave and sew and stuff.” On Saturday evening, her 10yo sister and her and I sat downstairs and, well, cross-stitched and sewed and wove and stuff. Apparently, it made quite anContinue reading “"Handwork" or, as we say here, "stuff to do."”

Why we homeschool

Our family started in Minneapolis, Minnesota where the two older kids were born. And it is this time of year, winter and cold and grey, that I most often think about and even miss Minneapolis. Winters there are hard. Very hard. The snow shoveling seems endless. The driving can be hard (much less walking orContinue reading “Why we homeschool”

It's getting hygge in here

We used to live in Minneapolis where we gained an appreciation for the Danish idea of “hygge” (pronounced hoo-ga). Even though Minnesota in general is more Swedish and Norwegian (and Eric and I both have Norwegian, not Danish, ancestry), the Scandinavian culture in general and weather definitely are conducive to a hygge-centric lifestyle. Hygge isContinue reading “It's getting hygge in here”

The "S" Word

One of the main reservations that parents have about homeschooling is that their children will not have an opportunity to “socialize”. The image that many hold of homeschool kids is that they don’t watch TV or are not otherwise exposed to mainstream culture and, as a result, don’t have the same cultural touchstones that everyoneContinue reading “The "S" Word”

Teachers that every student should have

This holiday season, I was chatting with some long-time family friends including a third-grader. I asked her the standard questions about school and what she had been doing lately. She described a power point slide that she had made about animal adaptation as her mother listened. I asked her what adaptation she learned about andContinue reading “Teachers that every student should have”

Gift Giving

Many of our thoughts and conversations around here — with both the kids and between Eric and I — are about gifts, receiving and giving them. There are various lists being written and secret emails and whispering and furtive shuffling of packages into hiding places. They aren’t quite brown paper packages tied up with string,Continue reading “Gift Giving”