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Registration now open for our Fall Testing Service!
Susan and Howard Richman have been offering a Fall Testing Service since the homeschooling law in Pennsylvania was enacted in 1988, helping families to meet the testing requirements for 3rd, 5th, and 8th grade testing in a 'homeschool friendly' setting at regional churches or synagogues. They also welcome students in other 'non-testing' years, 4th grade thru 12th grade, as many families like to make testing a routine part of each school year.
We are very pleased to announce you can now register online or by mail for our upcoming Fall Testing Service. We'll once again be using the TerraNova nationally normed achievement test. Morning testing will coverreading, language arts, and mathematics, and we will again offer optional afternoon testing on science andsocial studies.
A delightful drawing done by a 3rd grader at one of our testing days-- it now hangs on my wall!
You can click on the TESTING SERVICE link above -- or just click right here.
We also recommend that you consider using the Scoring High testing preparation practice books in our online store to help you guide your child in being well-prepared.
Further, take a look at the various archived articles right here on our website, on ways to help your child feel ready for testing experiences-- we have lots available! You'll find ideas on how to ease test worries (for both mom and student!), how to see what areas of readiness you have some control over, what to do if your child might not score as well as hoped, links to resources for science and social studies testing, and much more. And if you might have some further areas you'd like to see us cover, do post your comments and thoughts below.
The 'early bird' pre-registration fee of $30 per student (*plus* a $3.95 handling fee on the whole order) is applicable through October 10, 2011....
Helps for Getting Organized this Coming School Year! Free and online ;-)
With the start of every school year, I know every homeschool mom at some point says to herself, "THIS is the year when I'm REALLY going be organized!!" Looking ahead gives us a new chance to try a new organizational plan or to set new goals for ourselves, and we all feel hopeful at this time of year. And sometimes we're on the outlook for some new tools to help us in this perrenial quest... and I've got some suggestions for you!
And know that even though our own homeschooled 'kids' are now adults on their own, I still get that school year organizational rush, as I'm very busy right now planning out my AP US History course for the coming year, seeing what topics I want to do for our monthly Homeschoolers Writing Club, and just in general wanting to hone my often 'challenged' organizational skills.
Maybe it was last night, getting the phone call at 7:05pm that let us know that my husband and I had forgotten all about the homeschoolers Square Dance we were supposed to be calling... right then. We were dressed and off within 5 minutes-- we had a wonderful time at the dance.... but the experience made me (once more!) resolve that this will be the year for me to really remember to LOOK at my calendars!
Or maybe it was the email I just received this afternoon, from a very nice homeschooling mom who wondered where the 'school year' calendar that we 'always' had posted on our website was-- she couldn't seem to find it this time. I had to let her know that we'd *never* had a 'school year' calendar available on our site for download... but then I quickly found her a wonderful website that had just such a form.... and MUCH more.
So first off, here's this site from Donna Young, a former homeschool mom-- and I *know* that many, many years ago, Donna and I used to correspond, so this felt like re-meeting an old friend ;-). Click oncalendars right here, and you'll come to Donna's page with all sorts of calendar options that you can print out....
Homeschool Day at Pottsgrove Manor, Friday Sept 16th (Pottstown, Montgomery Co)
Editor's Note from Susan Richman: Hands-on experiential learning is crucial to developing lifelong interests in history-- and it's wonderful that Pennsylvania museums offer so many great ways to do this! For great info on using museums and historical sites to learn more about PA History, check out www.ExplorePAHistory.com -- and if you live in Eastern PA, hope you can make it to this special Homeschoolers Day at Pottsgrove Manor. Special thanks to all the museums that offer special events for homeschooling families!
On Friday, September 16th, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., bring your homeschoolers out to Pottsgrove Manor for a fun-filled and educational field trip that will let them explore the skills, trades, and pastimes of the 18th century.
Around the grounds, children will be able to participate in hands-on activities led by Pottsgrove Manor staff and volunteers, including candle-dipping, quill pen writing, colonial toys and games, gardening, dancing and etiquette. Participants will also see demonstrations of blacksmithing, learn about colonial cooking, and meet a dairy cow! The first floor of the Pottsgrove Manor mansion will be open for self-guided tours, with volunteers stationed in the rooms to share the house’s history and answer questions. The museum shop will be open for the purchase of books, games, souvenirs and more.
The cost is $5 per child. Pre-registration is suggested. Call 610.326.4014 to register or for more information. Activities will be ongoing throughout the day; allow at least 2 hours for your visit....
Blog review of the PHAA High School at Home Conference, July 15, 2011
Editor's Note from Susan Richman: I was delighted to receive a link to Polly Castor's blogsite, where she wrote up a review of her recent experience driving with another homeschool friend all the way from Connecticut to attend our PHAA High School at Home Conference. Her teens will be taking part in three of our AP online classes for homeschoolers this coming school year. Shows that this conference sparks interest from families beyond Pennsylvania-- we welcome families from any state to take part in this great annual day of focused learning and thinking about the high school at home experience. We hope you come next July!
Today I went to the High School at Home Conference in Carlisle, Pennsylvania. It was a 4.5 hour drive from here, and I went with a friend who is also a homeschooling mom. We left at 4:15am and returned at 11:30pm, having shared a full and enlightening day. This is the first time either of us had ever been to this particular conference and it was a delight for both of us, having thought that the big, general homeschooling conferences were rather weak on higher level homeschooling support.
This conference was put on by PA Homeschoolers, and two of my children are taking online AP classes with them next year. (I can’t help wishing I knew about them when my oldest was homeschooling!) These classes promise to be rigorous and fruitful. My son will take both AP Economics and AP World History with them next year, and I was delighted to get to meet his Econ teacher. He invites debate and encourages competition in a way I’m sure my son will love. My daughter will be taking AP Studio Art (Drawing) and I met her teacher as well. She also seems to be very competent and a good fit. I saw some of her previous student’s work and it was incredible.
The keynote speaker was Jeannette Webb, a college admissions consultant specializing in homeschoolers. The talk she gave us, “Ten Mistakes Students Make When Planning for College,” is available for a free download on her website aiminghigherconsultants.com. Her talented homeschool kids (admittedly with the enviable demographic advantage of being from Oklahoma) got in every Ivy League school to which they applied, and both turned down acceptances to Harvard....
Editor's note from Susan Richman: I was so pleased to hear at the PHAA High School at Home Conference this year that longtime Pennsylvania homeschooling parent and evaluator, Patti Stoudt, is doing a study of how homeschooling families are working effectively with their special needs children. It is very exciting to see families with children will all types of special learning needs seeing that home education can sometimes be the best answer for them-- it's certainly challenging, but so often these children are really helped to gain the skills and abilities to do their very best in life through the nurturing atmosphere of the home, coupled often with varied services or options in the broader community. We look forward to reporting back on Patti's findings when her doctoral project is completed.
I am a PA homeschool mom and homeschooling evaluator, and am completing my doctoral studies at Liberty University. I am doing a research study of families in PA homeschooling children with special education needs. I would like to invite you to participate in this study.
The purpose of this study is to explore the ways homeschooling parents have found to meet the special education needs of their children who are struggling learners.
Participation in this study is voluntary and would take about an hour of your time for me to interview you. All identifying information will be removed for confidentiality.
I am hoping the information gathered will be helpful to future homeschooling families.
Please let me know by August 10, 2011 if you are interested in participating in this study or if you would like more information.
Mrs. Patti Stoudt