Category Archives: Field Trips

Co-op and Field Trip

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In 2007, we moved to our current city from the small town I was raised in.  Boo was seven and Buddy turned four a few days after our move.  Our current city has a growing number of homeschooling families, and living here has given us opportunities to join in with the local homeschooling group for activities such as group field trips, homeschool choir, first aid classes, sports activities, and now co-op.  This is our first year attending co-op and we all enjoy it so much I wonder why we waited.  (Well, I know why we waited.  Until this year I was babysitting for my nephews and didn’t want to take along someone else’s baby…)  Smile  I had to practically drag the kids there the first day, but now they can’t wait for Thursday to come around.  It has been really good for me, too, to have some time with like-minded ladies-for fellowship and to bounce around ideas.  I have been teaching two separate classes on government and the elections.  It was so much fun to teach the kids about our government from a Christian perspective.  And they were very interested in elections and politics.  I had several say that GOVERNMENT was their favorite class at the co-op!  On Thursday we had our own elections.  The advanced group voted for their favorite soda after having a primary election, a debate, and creating their own ads and posters.  The younger group just had a simple election between two types of candy.

Yesterday many of us went as a group on a field trip to a fossil bed a couple of hours away.  It was a fantastic trip.  The guide at the fossil bed did a wonderful job explaining things to the kids.  It was yet another opportunity to discuss “60,000,000 years ago” with our children.  We don’t shy away from museums or historical locations because of the evolutionary content.  It makes for great teachable moments with our children.  I consider it to be “inoculating” them.  If they get a little of it with mom or dad nearby to explain the truth, when they hear it alone later one they will remember what we have discussed with them.  My kids point out the signs and talk about how silly it is.  Smile

After the fossil beds and a rather chilly picnic we went to a fish hatchery, too.  The kids had a blast feeding the fish and watching them come in droves to the surface for the meal.

I believe wholeheartedly that homeschooling is right for our family.  I also know that my children are way more social than I was (even though I was public schooled) and they have been spared some of the sad situations that kids encounter.  However, I was noticing that, while they had MANY friends, then were missing out on being able to have close friendships.  They had their AWANA friends, their Tae Kwon Do friends, their Sunday School friends, their ball friends…and there was very little overlap.  The co-op has given them a group that they see regularly and they are starting to really develop some close friendships.  If you are considering joining in with a homeschooling group for activities or for a local co-op, I encourage you to at least try it out.

Here are some photos of our trip yesterday:

 

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Fabulous Field Trips: Blog Hop and Giveaway!!!

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This is the last of four weekly blog hops that I have been doing with the Home Educating Family Review Team. This week, thanks to Home Educating Family, I get to give away a My Well Planned Day paper planner. You can find out the details at the end of this post!

Of the four topics we were given for the blog hop, this is my favorite. Today I get to tell you about field trips that we have taken. Homeschooling has afforded us the opportunity to take our kids on trips when most other children are in school. Homeschooling is such a natural part of our life that no matter what we are doing, we use it as a learning experience. However, some of the trips we have taken have been intended to be purely educational. For example, we have visited museums and historical sites. Then there are the trips with our homeschool group, where we are able to combine a learning experience with a delightful time of fellowship. Other times we take a trip and school as we go.

Beginning homeschoolers sometimes have difficultly letting go of the mindset that if it isn’t done sitting still at a desk or table..or at the very least, at home..it isn’t really school. When you can shift from that into seeing that your whole life can be school, homeschooling becomes a lot more fun. The learning our family does on field trips becomes some of the longest-lasting education we do. And there are just SO MANY choices! We have visited museums, forts, the capitol building, the ocean, the lake, the police station, the fire station, plays, and an apple orchard, just to name a few. Here are some photos from some of our most memorable field trip days:

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I also wanted to encourage you by saying that the vast majority of our field trips are done less than an hour away from our home; many, in fact, right in our own town. If traveling for a field trip just isn’t in the budget right now, with a little creativity you can come up with all kinds of places to visit right near home. A farm, a factory, the dentist office, the newspaper office, a store, the city offices…there are just so many possibilities! Smile Call up a friend or two, pack a lunch, and take a tour of a local business followed by food and fellowship in the park. You will all feel recharged and ready to attack more math problems and reading books when you get home!

Last weeks winner was Laura Lynn Rice who was the fourteenth comment on my blog post.  Congratulations! Once I get in contact with you, Home Educating Family will be sending you your On-the-Go Planner!

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This week, thanks to Home Educating Family, I am able to give away My Well Planned Day paper planner to one of my readers!

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You have until midnight next Thursday (October 11th) to enter.  I will be using random.org to choose a winner, which I will announce next Friday (October 12th).  If you enter, please be sure to check back on Friday to see if you are the winner.  I will need to forward the winner’s name and email to Home Educating Family so that they can send you the prize!

Here’s how to enter:

You may have up to three entries per person.  Any extra entries will be deleted before I determine the winner.

1. You may have one entry just for leaving any comment on this post.  I’d love to know more about you, but even just a “nice post” will do!  Smile

2. You may have one entry for “liking” Crestview Heights Academy on Facebook.  Please leave a separate comment noting that you have done so.  If you already like CHA, just let me know that in the comment.

3. You may have one entry for tweeting about the contest or posting about it on Facebook.  If you don’t have Twitter or Facebook, you can email about the contest or just tell a friend.  Leave a separate comment for completing this activity as well.

Due to international sweepstakes laws, this giveaway is for US entrants only. This giveaway is not tied to any social media site. All prizes must be claimed within eight weeks. Thank you!

Thank you to everyone who has participated in the blog hop. I hope that you enjoyed it. Congratulations to all of the winners!

Please go check out the rest of my team’s blogs and read about some more fabulous field trips.

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Socializing at the Pumpkin Patch

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Because I was a public school teacher before I began homeschooling, I don’t get questioned about whether or not I can teach my children.  In fact, I often hear “Well, of course you can homeschool.  You’re a teacher.”  The merits of being a “trained” teacher before homeschooling…or not…is a topic for another day.

I remember the first time I brought up homeschooling.  My husband and I had been discussing the idea and we were getting closer to the decision we eventually made to go forward.  I casually mentioned homeschooling to someone we see a couple of times a year, not letting on that it was something we were even considering.  Whoa, was I in for a surprise!  I learned a great deal about their homeschooled neighbors who were “weird” because they were quiet.  That was the first time I realized how concerning the topic of “socialization” is for anyone who is outside of the homeschool community.

Because of this conversation my husband and I set out on our homeschooling career determined that our children would be “normal”.  Yes, I realize the naivety of that statement.  I have since learned that I don’t really want my children to be “normal”.  However, I DO want them to be able to handle themselves in a wide variety of social situations.  And so we have carefully and prayerfully “socialized” our children.

We make a conscious effort to put our children into supervised activities where they can meet many different children.  We spend time with other families, both in our homes and doing other activities.  We help our children to choose good friends and then make time to have these children in our home.

We also have an ever-growing homeschool group.  As the children have gotten older we have done more of the activities offered through this group.  Yesterday we spent a delightful day visiting and enjoying the fresh air at a local pumpkin patch.  It gave me time to talk “grown-up” with women who understand what I am going through, and to offer advice to others.  My husband was able to go along with  us.  And our children got the opportunity to spend quality time with children who are having a more similar experience, to see that not all children carry a backpack and get onto a little yellow school bus.  We enjoyed ourselves immensely!

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Apple Orchard Field Trip

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Our area homeschool group took a trip out to an apple orchard today.  It was gorgeous weather.  We got to see how the apples are sorted and washed, how they are made into apple juice, and how they are planted and cared for.  We even got to pick several different kinds of apples.  They didn’t have any of my favorite, Honeycrisp, because they just planted those trees a couple of years ago.  But they had TWENTY-THREE different varieties.

Now that my nephews are getting older and I no longer have an infant, I’ve been making an effort to go to more of the group events.  I know it is important for the kids..and for me..to spend time with like-minded families.  So we have a few outings planned yet this fall.  Next week is the Pumpkin Patch..I can’t wait!  Smile

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