Tag Archives: homeschool support group

Year End Celebration

Every May, our homescholling support group celebrates the end of another year of homeschooling.   This celebration includes a graduation ceremony for those leaving kindergarten, eighth grade, and twelfth grade.  This year our group had twelve graduates, two kindergarten, four 8th grade, four high school, and for the first time in our group’s history, a mom and son graduating homeschool college.

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There were senior and college graduate speeches. One senior sang and was accompanied by his dad on guitar and younger sister on piano.  Our Creative Ministries troop, SALT, performed during the program.

7856_468306246584566_128793297_n    969074_468305716584619_1940202865_n    305635_468305619917962_776680969_n   grad 13

984178_468305553251302_390946033_n     401829_468305509917973_1456509954_n    grad 12    397373_468305473251310_308247869_n     grad 10    grad 11     480641_468306206584570_479662989_n    grad 8

This family in the next photo is so special.  Our families have known each other for years.  They have been most active and helpful with our groups activities for since they began their homescooling journey.  And we have gotten together many time outside of the support group.  They invite my B15 to go to events with them.  They come to special church events with us.931295_461015720647062_2101380154_n Seven years ago, this boy was in a 5th grade special education class in a public elementary school.  He was taking several behavioral medications.  The school evaluated him at a 1st grade level.  Therapists had told her that he probably would not be able to learn to read, write, perform math, or be a self sufficient adult someday.  She took her son’s education into her own hands.  She took him off the medications.  She taught him to read, write, do math, drive a car, get a job, and manage his own finances!  It’s been a difficult for them to get to this point.  They have not had family support.  The mom is currently battling cancer for the second time.   He takes care of her.  There wasn’t a dry eye in the audience by the time they finished their presentation.

Families without graduates still participate in the ceremony by presenting their children with awards for something they have achieved during the year.  My husband presented awards to our kids.  He gave our homeschool a history award for our studies of the Middle Ages and Renaissance.

970432_468957796519411_2101113680_nZ7 was given the “Independent Study” award.

969_468958056519385_1967017819_nJ10 earned the “All Around Improvement” award.

9975_468957896519401_1165882513_nB15 was awarded for “Scriptural Character Studies and Application”.

933992_468957963186061_389716619_nE17 received an “Honor Roll” award and the “Super Girl” award for academics and extra curricular activities.

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I wasn’t left out of the awards.  My family gave me one too, “Computer Achievement”.426667_468958089852715_341048365_n

Families also set up display tables featuring awards, photos  and projects from the year.  This was our homeschool’s display.

971711_461016027313698_1140299628_nE17 and I had been on the decorating committee.  We had an expected head count of 120 guests for the reception.  We planned for more, which was a good thing because we had close to 200 guests attend!

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Several of our group’s members brought potluck style finger foods and drinks which made for a delicious, four table long buffet.  We had a bakery cake made for dessert.

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Silver Lining, the homeschool color guard, was the entertainment during the reception.

grad 16Graduation/Acheivement Night is always my favorite homeschooling event of the year.  I’m so proud of all the families in our homeschooling support group and love to hear about their accomplishments and see what they’ve been up to throughout the school year.

For more about our homeschool creative ministries click here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/05/20/salt/

For more about our homeschool color guard click here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/03/16/silver-lining/

Here’s the link to free custom awards printables  http://www.dltk-cards.com/award/

betty jo

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By Your Side

familt pic 2This mommas heart has been heavy.  My first born, A21 is leaving the nest.  Not for a job or different college, but for love.   A love that is not here in Kentucky, but in Michigan.   I knew this day would eventually come, but that doesn’t help my emotions any.  This is not some surprise news, they have been planning this for months.  I have imagined the worst possible outcomes.  I’ve cried rivers. I have thrown fits.  This was not in my plan for my son!

I have very close friends in our homeschooling support group.  As I whined and complained about my A quitting his job (it’s a cruddy job) and not signing up for the fall semester at college, one of the moms looked right at me and said I just simply had to trust God with my son now.   I replied, “I trust God, just not my son!”

For days, no weeks, that conversation has haunted me.  That other mom was right.  I wasn’t trusting God with this situation.

adam blogI don’t know the plans HE has for my son.  I know A belongs to God and has a personal relationship with Christ Jesus.  I know the WORD is in his head and his heart.  And, if he makes a mistake or two, the Lord will use it for his good.  He will grow from it.  And,  if this move is God’s plan, then it won’t be long before I have a daughter-in-law and a very happy son!

58485_461286963942018_1219730728_nThe girl is beautiful and sweet.  She loves him.  I truly cannot blame him for wanting to be with her.  His moving so many miles away may even be Biblical if the courtship goes right.  “Therefore a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife” (Genesis 2:24)

It’s time for this momma to let him go.  His dad and I have educated him.  We have taught him the best that we could .  We believe that he knows what to do to be a man.  We have shared our faith and A made it his own years ago.  He is smart and talented.  He works hard and loves much.

I am assured that my A isn’t going away totally on his own, but he is taking his Best Friend with him.  He will stay by his side,  He will teach him.  He will spark A’s memory of what he has learned from being a child of God.

I have this same Best Friend who will stay by my side too.  He’ll comfort me, dry these tears, and remind me that He’s got this under control.  He sees the big picture, not I.

For He Himself has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”  (Hebrews 13:5)

But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. (John 14:26)

Dear reader, pray with me to get my emotions under control and actually start trusting the One with the plan.  He will lead and guide my child.  God does not require my interference, opinion, or my controlling nature with what He has in store for my first born.

betty jo

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Spring Formal

I was treated to breakfast by one of my nearest, dearest, and longest homeschooling mom friends.  The purpose for this was to plan this springs Teen Night.  Of course, this led to the discussion of past events.

Here’s some photos “besties” from last spring when we threw a prom (alternative) for our homeschool support groups high school students.

The girls made their own corsages.  Notice their purity rings.

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We met at White Haven, a local tourist spot.  for a photo shoot.

prom 4Dinner and shared dessert at a nice out of town restaurant .prom7Outside in the garden gazebo.  This is where they danced “The Cupid Shuffle”

prom 6Mini golf.

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Changed and comfy playing board games at the after party.

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This year’s teen night will be different but still wonderful.  Our support group has grown so much that our estimated head count looks like a minimum of 20 teens.  After photos and dinner we have party at a reserved hall with Wii games, music, costume trunk photo booth, and an ice cream sundae bar.

E17, B15, and myself are very excited about these plans and looking forward to this special night.  Z7 says it’s not fair.  He doesn’t want to wait 8 more years for his homeschooler’s night out.

betty jo

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Link up for Beautiful Family Friday!   http://www.holyspiritledhomeschooling.net/

Happy Birthday Dear…Everybody

For the past few years our homeschool support group has thrown one big birthday bash for all of our members.  This year our Debbie did not want any help with the decorating and wanted to surprise us.  And she did!  Each table was decorated with a month theme.

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fn13We had a good turnout for the birthday party.  I didn’t get a head count but at least 70 were there.

For the night’s entertainment Jason Lindsey (a homeschool dad, traveling science teacher, and all around nice guy) presented us with a Creation based “Hooked on Science” show.  We all loved him.  Here’s his link:  http://www.hookedonscience.org/fn14

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For dessert Debbie made four cakes, one for each season!fn12

Thank you so much Debbie.  You make all of our homeschool group parties so special.

For another post about our homeschool support group and our Debbie click here  https://stilllearningsomethingnew.com/2013/02/23/what-do-you-get-when-you-cross/

Happy Birthday!

betty jo

Gothic Revival in Western Kentucky

We toured some local historical churches with our homeschool support group. The three we visited are over 100 years old.  Not that old on the scale of old churches around the world, but old enough to have history.  Each of these were designed in a Gothic Revival manner, meaning that they look like mini middle age cathedrals.

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The windows we admired were beautiful stained glass,  the Bible in art,  just like those windows from long ago when the common man could not read the stories for himself, but instead saw them in the church windows.

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 As I stood amazed at the artisan skill,  I was humbled at the thought that God chooses not these fine buildings for his home, but  us.  “Don’t you realize that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, who lives in you and was given to you by God.” (1 Corinthians 6:19)

 One of the tour guides reminded us of this lesson from Luke 21:5-6,  “Some of his disciples were remarking about how the temple was adorned with beautiful stones and with gifts dedicated to God. But Jesus said, “As for what you see here, the time will come when not one stone will be left on another; every one of them will be thrown down.”  I’m glad to have seen these and shared them with my kids and friends before that happens .

betty jo

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Not So Weird Afterall

15 years ago homeschooling wasn’t all that popular. It was for hippies, survivalists, and religious fanatics (or so I thought). I did not fit into any of those categories, But, there I was pulling my kindergartener out of of public school anyway.

I checked out 2 different homeschool support groups and neither seemed to have hippies, survivalists, or religious fanatics as members. They were just normal moms that happened to be educating normal kids at home. The larger group had 25 or so families, the smaller had 6. Make that 7, because that’s the one we joined.

These awesome ladies helped me so very much. They taught me to breathe, relax, and pray. They prepped me on how to answer all the opposition questions that would come my way.  You know those questions, “What about socialization?” or “How will they get into college?” , etc (insert eye rolling here). They encouraged me and built me up.

This homeschool support group must not have been alone in encouraging newbies.  The number of homeschoolers in our country is now over the 2.5 million mark. Families are seeing home education as a viable option to traditional schooling. The opposition questions are still being asked but not as often and are now mixed with some very positive comments. It’s not so weird anymore.

Oh, and by the way, throughout the course of our 15 years homeschooling, I’ve happily learned to be a hippie, a survivalist, and a religious fanatic.  betty jo