2019 CHN Expo Keynote Speaker: Blake Boles
Blake Boles is the founder and director of Unschool Adventures and the author of The Art of Self-Directed Learning, Better Than College, and College Without High School. He hosts the Off-Trail Learning podcast, speaks for alternative schools, writes for The Alliance for Self-Directed Education, and has keynoted multiple homeschooling conferences.
He and his work have appeared on The New York Times, The Christian Science Monitor, BBC Travel, Psychology Today, Fox Business, TEDx, The Huffington Post, USA Today, NPR affiliate radio, and the blogs of Wired and The Wall Street Journal.
In 2003 Blake was studying astrophysics at UC Berkeley when he stumbled upon the works of John Taylor Gatto, Grace Llewellyn, and other alternative education pioneers. Deeply inspired by the philosophy of unschooling, Blake custom-designed his final two years of college to study education full-time. After graduating he joined the Not Back to School Camp community and began writing and speaking widely on the subject of self-directed learning. Visit Blake’s website Article: What Does it Mean to Be Educated?
In This Issue
3 CHN Family Expo
7 The Importance of Protecting Their Passions
11 Project-Based Learning for Social Impact
16 Upcoming Homeschool Days
19 CHN Camping
21 Young Eagles
22 3 Myths About Homeschooling Special Needs Kids
27 Game Review: Rubik's Race
29 The Bitter Homeschooler's Wish List
32 College Corner
37 Local Contacts
39 Meet the Board
Speaker Proposals for our 2019 Family Expo are now being accepted. Please visit our website to submit a Speaker Proposal.
Register at www.californiahomeschool.net
Special room rates at Great Wolf Lodge end April 1, 2019
CHN Expo attendees receive a special Room Rate of $159 a night, plus discounted parking ($5.00 per vehicle per night) & resort fee ($14.99 per night). The hotel code to reserve your room at Great Wolf is: 1909CHNE
May 2 - 5, 2019
New to homeschooling? Have questions about how to get started? Need help understanding your rights? Come join us to learn your legal options to homeschool in the state of California, homeschool basics and answers to your homeschooling questions.
Adult (20 & Up)
Child (under 3)
View the CHN Family Expo Speakers Here
Pricing includes attendance to all 4 days of Expo.
Inspire Charter families may use funds to pay for Expo Registration.
CHN Family Membership is $30 per year.
FREE Homeschooling 101 session on Thursday
A Home Education Conference for the Whole Family.
for the CHN Family Expo
2nd - 5th
CHN's Family Expo in Garden Grove is the homeschool conference for all, from beginning homeschoolers, to veterans, young and old - there is something for everyone! The CHN Family Expo is a locally produced, all-inclusive event. We are here to promote the "community" in the homeschooling community.
In addition to our homeschooling 101 session and our knowledgeable featured speakers, the CHN Family Expo features sessions on all aspects and styles of homeschooling. There are dedicated activities for teens, tweens, kids, toddlers and families. Some of the featured activities during the day may include a project fair, art room, video game tournament, air powered rockets and more! There are also evening events such as live entertainment, teen and family dances, talent shows, video gaming and movies. CHN features a vendor hall where you can discuss, examine & purchase curriculum, supplies, books, games, toys and services from many vendors who specialize in the homeschool market. Our Expo always ends with a very special high school graduation ceremony - be sure to bring your hanky!
What sets us apart from other homeschool conferences? California Homeschool Network is an all-volunteer nonprofit organization. The CHN Family Expo is organized and run entirely by volunteers who work throughout the year to build an exciting and enriching homeschool conference. Our goal is to bring together the community of California homeschoolers so that we can learn from one another and provide a fun and educational conference for the entire family - from toddlers to grandparents.
Check out the Schedule
Free tables for all kids selling their own creations.
Kid's Entrepreneurial Sale
The Fiber Arts Room will have open stations available for you to explore at your leisure. There will also be many demonstrations and classes you can choose from including spindling, weaving, looms, dying, knitting and more.
The Art Room open art studio is created for you and your family to relax and be artful. High quality art supplies will be at your finger tips to explore and create with.
Fiber Arts Room
LEARNING THROUGH PLAY
The game room is back with all of your favorite console & PC games including the Super Smash Bros and Mario Kart tournaments.
Come in and play! Come race in a castle maze, create a coat of arms, craft royal crowns, learn the art of candle making and so much more! Our medieval themed Family Village has games, activities, crafts and fun designed for the whole family.
CHN's Teen Planning Committee
Register to Graduate
CHN's Extraordinary Graduation Ceremony
Viva Las Vegas!
Las Vegas - The City of Lights & the Entertainment Capital of the World! We're throwing a party to celebrate the glamour of all that glitters and shines in Vegas. Come play some cards, throw a few dice and dance the night away!
Teens and young adults are welcome, ages 12-21. This dance is FREE to all teens registered for Expo. 12yo Expo attendees can purchase a wristband for $5. Those not attending Expo and just coming for the dance are $20.
The Teen Planning Committee (TPC) is working hard at creating a fabulous teen program for Expo!
There will be plenty of group favorites like Improv, Werewolf, Dodge Ball and Speed Greeting plus a ton of creative activities like henna tattoos, jewelry making, Lego's and more. We are positive you won't be bored! (They're planning to add a little "May the 4th" fun into the teen schedule too.)
The CHN High School Graduation Ceremony is like no other. From our inspiring commencement speech to the personalized presentation each graduate receives, it's an event not to be missed.
If you have a teen graduating and would like to be included in this once in a lifetime event, please click below.
CHN's Teen Dance
By Roya Dedeaux, MFT
The Importance of Protecting Their Passions
As a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, I’ve spoken to and worked with thousands of parents and their children about their mental health, communication, and relationships. Over and over again I keep seeing patterns that seem so crucial to overall health and well-being that I don’t understand why they are not plastered mural-style on the front of every clinician’s office. Parents, do you want to help decrease stress, anxiety, and depression in your children, and help increase confidence, self-esteem, and overall well-being? Support their passions.
It sounds simple. Most homeschooling parents I know are homeschooling in part because they understand the value of following their children’s interests. The ability to provide more time for sinking into a passion in-depth is a huge draw of the homeschooling lifestyle. Homeschooling parents understand that connections can be made between subjects, that we learn in a variety of ways (not just from a book at a desk), and let’s not forget that homeschooling parents are among some of the best resource providers I know. Want to find a workshop in an obscure topic? If a homeschooling parent can’t find it within an hour drive, they’ll just start their own.
It’s so important to take these steps, and really protect your kids’ interests. From a developmental standpoint, children and teenagers are supposed to be self-centered. It is part of their psychosocial task work, to focus on themselves. That fact comes fraught with land mines, however. Take this scenario for example -- Kid says, “Parent, I’m interested in Topic Y.” Parent says, “Topic Y is a waste of time/money.” Kid hears, believes, internalizes, “because Topic Y is stupid, I must be stupid for liking Topic Y.” Also, importantly, the parent has put up a wall between trust and communication between them and their child, which is a critically important factor for resiliency and well-being overall.
You might have never outright told your child, “the thing you love is stupid,” but very often we express the message that we don’t value their interest in other ways. Those supposed-to-be-self-centered kids and teenagers use their developmental super powers to internalize that message - even if that was not our intended impact.
Homeschoolers tend to have a head start with supporting their children’s passions, yet even among our incredible homeschooling community, I have parents coming to me expressing difficulty at following their children’s passions. It usually comes down to logistical difficulties and emotional barriers. Those logistical barriers are almost always related to the emotional ones, and those emotional barriers almost always come down to fear. Having fears as a parent is an inescapable part of parenting. It is important, in that case, to really spend time exploring your own biases, values, and barriers so they do not get in the way of you showing that you value your children’s interests, and by association, your child.
Here are a few ways to show you value what your child values:
Use kind language. If someone speaks harshly to us about something we love, we tend not to trust them with that information again. Don’t use words like, “obsessed” or “addicted.” They have negative connotations and are insulting. Re-frame it with words like, “invested” or “dedicated.” Think about how you’d feel if your partner called something you loved “an addiction.” It doesn’t feel good.
Use specific language. Don’t call it knitting if it’s crochet. Know the jargon. Use the jargon. Love is in the details.
Give them time. It takes hours and hours and hours to become expert level at something. Look up the theory of “Flow” and try very hard not to interrupt your child when they are showing you with their behavior what they want to do with their free time. Assist them in spending even more time by bringing them food, and understanding the mechanisms of their interest so you know when a good time would be if you have to interrupt.
Examine how you represent your values. Where you spend money and other resources are representations of your values. Why are you loathe to spend more money on that particular thing? What does their physical space to do their interest look like? Could you make any changes that show you value their interest?
Work through your own fears, away from them. Most logistical barriers can be worked through with creative problem solving IF you don’t have fears blocking that ability. Your worries are your own, from your own history, and really
have very little to do with your child. Just like you wouldn’t want to pass on math or art anxiety, try not to pass on Topic Y anxiety either. Work with a therapist who understands homeschooling, talk to other supportive and kind parents, process your emotions so that when you are face to face with your child you can be truly curious and interested in what they are interested in, and not reacting out of fear.
10 Statements to show your support of your kids’ interests:
I’m impressed by your dedication
I’ve been noticing how focused you are.
I love watching you do that.
I’m so interested in this!
That looks totally fascinating.
That looks like it was a lot of work to get there.
You’ve really become an expert.
This reminds me of something I love.
I’ll be right back, I’m just getting snacks.
I can’t wait to see more.
10 questions to show your support of your kids’ interests:
Can I see?
Can you show me how you did that?
Where did you learn how to do that so well?
What is your favorite part?
What is the hardest part for you?
Can I show off a photo to my friends?
Can you help me learn?
Do you have advice for a beginner?
Do you want me to help clean up?
Can I bring you any food?
For more ways to protect your child’s passion, you can download “Protect Their Passions” a practical workbook for parents, available at www.royadedeaux.com, or read updates about Roya’s upcoming book by the same name at http://patreon.com/royadedeaux. Roya Dedeaux is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (#95302) conducting in-person and online therapy out of Los Alamitos, CA. A grown homeschooler and homeschooling parent, she loves all things yarn (www.yarnofthemonth.com), teaching classes about play at CSULB, and helping parents protect their children’s passions in every way she can.
By Blair Lee & Samantha Cook
Project-Based Learning for Social Impact
Project-based learning is a profound learning methodology. At its most basic, project-based learning uses an engaging question, problem, or challenge as a vehicle to incorporate the academic skills students learn in an abstract setting and apply those skills to a real-world situation in a meaningful way. Because of the way projects are structured and designed, multi-disciplinary with the application of academic skills to topics students are invested in, there is no other methodology as likely to be impactful socially as much as project-based learning.
A key part of project-based learning is to include mentors to help guide and scaffold students.
The dynamic between student and mentor can open doors of thought as students realize the potential of their project to the world at large. When students are scaffolded as they fall down rabbit holes, following potential avenues while working on a project, there is much more likelihood they will be captivated and begin looking at the implications of the project to the larger world. This is the heart of a modern, relevant education, one that guides students to apply academic skills to issues meaningful to their lives. A 2013 study, conducted by Gallup, Microsoft Partners in Learning, and the Pearson Foundation indicates that the relationship between education and skill development, such as occurs in project-based learning, is important. The study shows a positive correlation between critical thinking, real-world problem solving, and the use of technology for learning,
collaboration, and communication for future job success.
It is a radical, yet practical, act to teach in the way the children learn best, encouraging them be risk takers, change agents, and seers. The way in which we create a modern education should be based on the most effective delivery of essential knowledge and skills. The scope and speed at which digital,
physical, and biological technology is being developed, used, and adapted is unprecedented. The line between the artificial and biological world is becoming increasingly blurred. We are becoming experts at curating and managing our personal ecosystems to be more productive and connected. The economy is changing from competitive to collaborative. After decades of conditioning to mass produce education along with our goods, as educators we can have the foresight and adaptability crucial to shaping and successfully navigating the new world we are in the midst of building. A willingness to look at the evidence and create an entirely new culture around learning is important to the future.
Students have been surrounded by technology their entire lives; they use it without even thinking about it. Weaving technology into projects comes naturally to them. When students do this, they make technology intrinsic to the project, often thinking of new applications for the technology, or using technology they are familiar with to create original works. These are critical skills for the future that are not well-mastered in traditional school settings where assignments incorporating technology often seem abstract and without purpose.
An example of a project that has had a large social impact is The Ocean Cleanup, the organization started by Boyan Slat when he was 16 years old. Slat loves to dive. When diving he noticed the amount of plastic waste in the water and on the beaches. He
saw seabirds that died from eating plastic waste thinking it was food. He had a problem with all this and society’s role in it. It posed a challenge for him as he realized that the problem was twofold: people need to stop dumping plastic into waterways, and they need to clean up what is already there. He began working on a solution for this challenge when his teacher gave the students in his class two weeks to spend studying the subject of their choice. Slat chose plastic pollution for his project. That was over a decade ago. Slat has not given up his pursuit of a solution to this problem. He has applied new and older technologies to different academic and social skills as he has worked toward a solution. He is a diver who understands the finances, history, and science of plastic. His project includes general science principles, environmental issues, public speaking, writing, forming a nonprofit organization, engineering, financial planning, biology, becoming fluent in English, and math applications. Early on in the project, he contacted professors at the University near where he lived who mentored and helped him in his early estimates of how much plastic there is in the Pacific Gyre. What started out as an assignment has turned into Slat’s life mission. As of writing, The Ocean Cleanup recently launched System 001 from San Francisco. Slat hopes this engineering marvel will successfully clean up the largest accumulation zone of ocean plastics called The Great Pacific Garbage Patch, located halfway between Hawaii and California.
Not every student who uses project-based learning will find their way to working on a project of this scale. But it is not unusual for students to strive for their projects to be meaningful on a larger scale. Children are dreamers. As students work on a project, those areas where they can make a difference and have an impact on the world around them become apparent. Once
students become aware of the possibilities; they dream about how their projects can be meaningful, not just for the grades, but because they are doing something beneficial to change the world.
This is an excerpt from Project-Based Learning: Creating a Modern Education of Curiosity, Innovation, & Impact, coming this Spring. You can sign up here to get updates about the Kickstarter campaign going live March 1.
Blair Lee M.S. is the founder of Secular Eclectic Academic Homeschoolers and author of The Science of Climate Change: A Hands-On Course and for the critically acclaimed R.E.A.L. Science Odyssey Series. Blair handcrafted the education of her non-linear thinker for years. During that time, she has learned as much about how learning happens from him as he learned from her. Blair is a passionate advocate of innovative academics using secular materials. Through her speaking and writing, her goal is to empower educators to dare to be innovative and create something unique and academically-rich when handcrafting their child’s journey through learning. Blair is a featured speaker at this year's CHN Family Expo. You can get information about her next book, co-authored with Samantha Cook, about Project-Based Learning.
Samantha Matalone Cook, MAT, has almost three decades of experience in education, program development, and the arts and has worked with both small and large organizations to create educational programming that centers and connects the learner to concepts and skills. She has taught in classrooms and in private workshops, mentored other educators, and worked for and with many museums including the Smithsonian. To see her past and current projects, including her blog and her upcoming book on Project-Based Learning , co-authored with Blair Lee, and History Odyssey curriculum, please visit www.samanthamatalonecook.com
California History Homeschool Day
2/7, 3/7, 4/4
10am - 5pm
$8 per person
Click for tickets.
Charles M Schulz Museum
9am - 5:30pm
Click for info.
10am - 12pm
$8 per person
Click for tickets.
Mission San Juan Capistrano
Orange (ages 5-14)
1pm - 3:30pm
$15 per person
Click for info.
San Juan Capistrano
2/20, 3/20, 4/24
9am - 5pm
$21.16 Incl activities
Click for info.
9am - 5:30pm
Click for info.
2/12, 2/26, 3/12, 4/9
12pm - 2pm
$3 - $5 per person
Click for info.
Homeschool Day at Kidspace Museum
La Brea Tar Pits and Museum
Crocker Art Museum
9:30am - 5pm
$14 per person
Click for info.
Los Angeles Natural History Museum
Children's Discovery Museum
Special pricing offered to homeschoolers for local activities when public school is in session.
The Teen Homeschoolers of SoCal Discord server is ready to welcome your teens! Discord is a social messaging platform that can be accessed by app, browser, or computer download. Come join us in the fun! Create an account, and use this link to join! https://discord.gg/QpeSPtn
NAME LOCATION DETAILS
Sky High Rancho Cordova Mon 1-2pm $6
Ice Palace Aliso Viejo Mon 10:15-11:15am $8
Get Air Huntington Beach Fri 1-2pm $7
Rockin' Jump Santa Ana Mon 1-3pm $10
Rockin' Jump Santa Ana Thurs 1-3pm $10
Circus Trix Mission Viejo M-F 11am-1pm $12
The Rinks Corona (Inline) 1st Mon 2-4pm $5
The Rinks Corona (Inline) 3rd Thurs 10-12pm $5
Epic Rollertainment Temecula Wed 11-1pm $8
Know of one we missed? Let us know!
CHN Summer Camp Out
Join us for four nights (Wed - Sun) in San Simeon with beach camping and a group tour of the Hearst Castle. Enjoy daytime activities like crafts and experiments, fun times at the beach and cool nights by the fire pit. This camp out has limited space and will sell out, so sign up early.
Members Only Camp Out Pricing: $35 per person (under 3 is free), plus a parking fee of $20 per vehicle or RV. Price includes all 4 nights of camping. Optional group tour of the Hearst Castle will be an additional fee, TBD.
San Simeon & Hearst Castle July 24 - 28, 2019
For more info and to register, please visit us at https://www.californiahomeschool.net/events/chn-spring-summer-campout/
The Young Eagles Program is a free nationwide program for kids ages 8-17 that are interested in aviation. To find a flight coordinator in your area, go to their website at www.eaa.org. We found it easiest to join our local chapter on Facebook, so that we could keep up with their event listings. You RSVP through your local chapter and then all you have to do is show up on the designated date. Once you arrive, you will register and sign in, play with a gaming flight simulator, have a quick meeting, and then the kids will head on up into the skies with a volunteer pilot! If your child sits in the front, sometimes the pilots will even let them fly. The flights last about 30 minutes. Upon their return, they will be given a log book that logs their very first flight. They will also be given a certificate and a personal code to activate their free EAA Student Membership and Sporty’s Learn to Fly Course. Your kids can return to future events in your area and fly again. Our son has participated multiple times and always has a great time!
By Desiree Hayes
Many parents homeschool special needs kids because traditional public schools are just not working for their kids. Your child may be bullied, not learning, or clearly just not fitting in and miserable. You may have started navigating your child’s rights and learned some of them, or most often you hit a wall and gave up. As complicated as these things are in traditional public schools – they are more complex in the rapidly changing world of homeschool options.
A couple years ago, I saw a need to help homeschooling parents of special needs kids navigate their child’s options. There are clearly a lot of confused parents, and the schools are just as confused. I started answering a few questions here and there, and hit a wall myself with some who clearly did understand this area. So, I decided to start my own group on Facebook. As they say, the rest is history. To date I have actively helped more than 1,400 parents learn their child’s options to homeschool with special needs. This article addresses some common myths I see about homeschooling special needs kids – whether with an IEP, 504, or PSA.
Myth #1 – I can’t get special ed. “services” for my child when I homeschool – FALSE
My own son actually begged me to homeschool him in 4th grade. I wish I had then! It would have saved him a lot of pain. But, I honestly just didn’t know how. If I had, I would have saved him years of suffering at the hands of a corrupt school district (Capistrano Unified) and an incompetent charter (Journey School) where special needs are concerned.
Ultimately, that’s how I learned his rights (and how I know so much to help others.) That fight is also what led us to homeschool--and now my son has been homeschooled over 3 ½ years and we love it!! We have homeschooled both privately, and with a charter.
Today, as a community of special ed parents, we are lucky we actually have options to homeschool our kids – yet still get them the help they need, that we may not be qualified or have time to provide.
Option 1 – Public Charter: When you homeschool with a public charter, there is no difference in services than in a traditional brick and mortar school. The school has to implement your IEP or 504, or assess your child for their needs--just like any other public school. Because of the lack of a regular school building, along with remote learning options, and vendor classes – this option has become very complicated.
But -- this is totally a viable option to combine
By Pam Ragland
3 Myths About Homeschooling Special Needs Kids
homeschooling and full special education services. Parents should not hesitate to use it. This public charter option provides both separate (not part of your main school funds) special education funding, and the right to expect the school to provide the proper services and progress. Another term for this is “funding and rights”—just like any other public school.
Option 2 – Private Homeschooling: If you homeschool privately (PSA or under a PSP) – your child is still entitled to services that are paid for by your local public school or school district. These services are called “Proportional Funding”. They are not 100% of all services – but they are usually 40-50%, depending on education funding levels.
Instead of an IEP, an ISP (Individual Service Plan) is developed. This plan gives your child the right to partial services, which are paid for by your home school district. This option does NOT give your child rights to progress or appropriate services, however. So this is “funding without rights”--except in one state. California is a “funding without rights” state for Proportional Services.
Still, your child could get a significant amount of services which are not provided another way like insurance. Related Services, such as transportation (direct transportation or paying you mileage) are also included.
Special note—your child CANNOT be punished or expelled for you insisting they receive their proper services: Some parents are being told if you join a charter and “request too many services” the school can “send you back to your home school”. This is completely untrue and illegal.
I did catch one of the big charters trying this recently, and I was able to (using a Due Process complaint) put a stop to this nonsense. The judge told them they would hands down lose on this issue, so they settled it. I got the school to put in writing they would not do that again to this child. That child is still there.
This does not mean they won’t try this again if they think no one is looking. For this reason, and to avoid this scenario – I strongly suggest finding out your child’s rights. Had this parent done this early on, instead of involving me when that school had been doing many wrong things for a while -- the school likely would not have tried this completely illegal action. I will include a link to my free group, below.
Myth #2 – I can’t get the same services as a traditional school – FALSE
Assuming you bring an IEP or 504 Plan to your charter school, your plan must be implemented in your new school. You can get equivalent services in your new school vs. your
former public school. The only exceptions are services that do not exist at all, such as a specialized class with unique curriculum – but in that case your new school must find a replacement to meet your child’s goals.
These equivalent services include the amount of service time, the frequency, and the method of delivery if this makes a difference to your child. If your school tries to reduce services or provide them a different way (such as virtual) – this cannot be done legally without data to prove that will work. You also have to give your approval. You do have stopgap options.
Myth #3 – If I decide not to pursue “services” I can help my child myself – MAY BE FALSE
Many parents of special ed. children mistakenly think if we “just teach in a certain way” or “just find the right curriculum” or “just give our child more time” or “just change the environment” – their child will no longer need special ed. services with homeschooling. You may decide to give up services, and this can be a huge mistake which costs your child years of progress.
This is especially true with parents who “unschool” (which I am generally a fan of.) But where special ed. is concerned it may be true that if you do these things your child may no longer need special ed. services -- but it also may not be.
Time and time again – I see parents who try to handle their child’s needs – and their kids get further and further behind. Of course this is a lose-lose where kids and parents are concerned. By the time these kids become pre-teens and older, it can be very hard to help our kids – let alone catch them up in this scenario.
There is a whole class of issues underlying many “disabilities” which actually require specialized therapy to correct. Unless you are trained to remediate these particular disabilities, you cannot actually help your child. Among these are: speech, OT (fine motor, executive function, muscle tone, sensory issues), central auditory processing disorder, visual processing disorder, and dyslexia. Many children identified with Autism and ADHD actually have these issues underlying their “diagnosis”. So do many children with reading, writing, and/or math challenges.
So how do you know if your child is one of these? You can only know that with proper assessments with the proper experts. That article would be a very long one!
Grads have exclusive access to the park, an all-you-can-eat dinner buffet, movies throughout the night at the Golden Bear Theater, dance areas throughout the park hosted by top LA radio station DJs, all rides and attractions (minus water rides), a Grad Nite glow souvenir and a Grad Nite Pass offering over 120 return dates in 2019.
There are many myths around homeschooling special needs kids. If you want to homeschool your special needs child, hopefully you can now check three of them off your list of worries!!
Sadly, most charters are no better than what happens in the regular public schools in terms of trying to disarm the parents and cheat the kids. But an informed parent is a child who gets what they need!
I have a free Facebook group where we discuss these and other issues regarding homeschool IEP’s, 504’s and other questions around homeschooling special needs kids. I also have many files with free resources. This is a parents only (no school or vendor employee) group. Feel free to join and tell your friends!! https://www.Facebook.com/groups/HomeschoolIEP
If you are a teacher, school employee, or vendor -- you are welcome to join this group:
9pm - 5am $100 grads/$80 chaperones
May 23, 2019
Game Review: Rubik's Race
By Ruby Ryan, age 9 (and mom)
I love Rubik’s Cubes, but they are hard for me to get all sides. I saw this game and thought it would be great since you only have to get one side.
Rubik's Race is a game for two players but you could still play it by yourself if you wanted. Shake the scrambler box and slide the tiles to be the first one to make the 3x3 center match the pattern from the scrambler box. You have to move your fingers fast and focus. The person to get the correct pattern puts the window down on your side. I really like this game because its like a puzzle and I like puzzles. It’s fun, fast, and I can play it with anyone.
The game is recommended for ages 7 and up but I think younger could easily play if they had the dexterity and strategic thinking. It’s a plastic game board and fairly durable. It can be purchased on amazon for about $10. It sounds easy, but the Rubik’s Race is a real game of skill, speed and dexterity.
June 5, 2019
Our Grad Nite includes all day access with the public to Disney's California Adventure. Then from 9pm - 2am, the park will be transformed into an exclusive end of year grad party! Groove at the Route 66 dance party, take grad pics with Mickey & Minnie, experience Guardians of the Galaxy & the Incredicoaster! Grad Nite is the perfect way to cap off high school with an experience that will last a lifetime.
Ages 17-18 only.
10am - 2am $99 each grads or chaperones
By Deborah Markus
The Bitter Homeschooler's Wish List
Please stop asking us if it’s legal. If it is - and it is - it’s insulting to imply that we’re criminals. And if we were criminals, would we admit it?
Learn what the words “socialize” and “socialization” mean, and use the one you really mean instead of mixing them up the way you do now. Socializing means hanging out with other people for fun. Socialization means having acquired the skills necessary to do so successfully and pleasantly. If you’re talking to me and my kids, that means that we do in fact go outside now and then to visit the other human beings on the planet, and you can safely assume that we’ve got a decent grasp of both concepts.
Quit interrupting my kid at her dance lesson, scout meeting, choir practice, baseball game, art class, field trip, park day, music class, 4H club, or soccer lesson to ask her if as a homeschooler she ever gets to socialize.
Don’t assume that every homeschooler you meet is homeschooling for the same reasons and in the same way as that one homeschooler you know.
If that homeschooler you know is actually someone you saw on TV, either on the news or on a “reality” show, the above goes double.
Please stop telling us horror stories about the homeschoolers you know, know of, or think you might know who ruined their lives by homeschooling. You’re probably the same little bluebird of happiness whose hobby is running up to pregnant women and inducing premature labor by telling them every ghastly birth story you’ve ever heard. We all hate you, so please go away.
We don’t look horrified and start quizzing your kids when we hear they’re in public school. Please stop drilling our children like potential oil fields to see if we’re doing what you consider an adequate job of homeschooling.
Stop assuming all homeschoolers are religious.
Stop assuming that if we’re religious, we must be homeschooling for religious reasons.
We didn’t go through all the reading, learning, thinking, weighing of options, experimenting, and worrying that goes into homeschooling just to annoy you. Really. This was a deeply personal decision, tailored to the specifics of our family. Stop taking the bare fact of our being homeschoolers as either an affront or a judgment about your own educational decisions.
Please stop questioning my competency and demanding to see my credentials. I didn’t have to complete a course in catering to successfully cook dinner for my family; I don’t need a degree in teaching to educate my children. If spending at least twelve years in the kind of chew-it-up-and-spit-it-out educational facility we call public school left me with so little information in my memory banks that I can’t teach the basics of an elementary education to my nearest and dearest, maybe there’s a reason I’m so reluctant to send my child to school.
If my kid’s only six and you ask me with a straight face how I can possibly teach him what he’d learn in school, please understand that you’re calling me an idiot. Don’t act shocked if I decide to respond in kind.
Stop assuming that because the word “home” is right there in “homeschool,” we never leave the house. We’re the ones who go to the amusement parks, museums, and zoos in the middle of the week and in the off-season and laugh at you because you have to go on weekends and holidays when it’s crowded and icky.
Stop assuming that because the word “school” is right there in homeschool, we must sit around at a desk for six or eight hours every day, just like your kid does. Even if we’re into the “school” side of education - and many of us prefer a more organic approach - we can burn through a lot of material a lot more efficiently, because we don’t have to gear our lessons to the lowest common denominator.
Stop asking, “But what about the Prom?” Even if the idea that my kid might not be able to indulge in a night of over-hyped, over-priced revelry was enough to break my heart, plenty of kids who do go to school don’t get to go to the Prom. For all you know, I’m one of them. I might still be bitter about it. So go be shallow somewhere else.
Don’t ask my kid if she wouldn’t rather go to school unless you don’t mind if I ask your kid if he wouldn’t rather stay home and get some sleep now and then.
Stop saying, “Oh, I could never homeschool!” Even if you think it’s some kind of compliment, it sounds more like you’re horrified. One of these days, I won’t bother disagreeing with you any more.
If you can remember anything from chemistry or calculus class, you’re allowed to ask how we’ll teach these subjects to our kids. If you can’t, thank you for the reassurance that we couldn’t possibly do a worse job than your teachers did, and might even do a better one.
Stop asking about how hard it must be to be my child’s teacher as well as her parent. I don’t see much difference between bossing my kid around academically and bossing him around the way I do about everything else.
Stop saying that my kid is shy, outgoing, aggressive, anxious, quiet, boisterous, argumentative, pouty, fidgety, chatty, whiny, or loud because he’s homeschooled. It’s not fair that all the kids who go to school can be as annoying as they want to without being branded as representative of anything but childhood.
Quit assuming that my kid must be some kind of prodigy because she’s homeschooled.
Quit assuming that I must be some kind of prodigy because I homeschool my kids.
Quit assuming that I must be some kind of saint because I homeschool my kids.
Stop talking about all the great childhood memories my kids won’t get because they don’t go to school, unless you want me to start asking about all the not-so-great childhood memories you have because you went to school.
Here’s a thought: If you can’t say something nice about homeschooling, shut up!
Deborah Markus, homeschooling mother, has no degrees, awards, or professional experience to speak of. She does, however, have thousands of books, all seven seasons of Buffy the Vampire Slayer on DVD, three bearded dragons, and one lizard of indeterminate species that she’s taken to calling The Immortal. The Letting Go is her first novel.
Everyone Emily has ever loved has been brutally murdered. The killer has never been caught, but Emily knows who’s responsible.
It’s the only possible explanation. Emily is the one thing all the victims have in common, which can only mean that someone—or something—is killing them to make her suffer.
Determined never to subject another person to the same horrible fate as her parents, friends, and pets, Emily sequesters herself at a private boarding school, keeping her classmates at a distance with well-timed insults and an unapproachable air. Day after day, she loses herself in the writing of Emily Dickinson—the poet makes a perfect friend, since she’s already dead.
Emily’s life is lonely, but it’s finally peaceful. That is, until two things happen. A corpse appears on the steps of the school. And a new girl insists on getting close to Emily—unknowingly setting herself up to become the killer’s next victim.
Heading to College with Disabilities
I have lived in the world of special education for 15 years. My older son went through public school with autism and thrived, but those same schools didn’t know how to educate my younger son, who has multiple disabilities. I spent years trying to make it work, but by middle school my son needed a change and needed it fast. We became a homeschooling family.
I was apprehensive going in, but homeschooling has worked so well for us. Our special education services have been exceptional and the two homeschool charters we’ve used have gone above and beyond to assist my son with everything, adjusting classes, providing occupational and speech therapy, and supplying special education teachers and materials suitable for my son. Right now, our current charter is applying for hard to get SAT accommodations, including music as a concentration aid, since my kid does better on tests with Metallica blasting in his ears. Our guidance counselor at Sky Mountain helped gather the information and submitted the request before winter break.
So we’ve spent the last five years with a strong support network and a team of people working to get my son the education he needs. But my son is now a junior and has decided that he wants to leave the state and get as far away from home as possible. He wants a four year college where he can study writing and art. He is ready to move on. And that is terrifying for me.
I have always been my child’s fiercest advocate and federal law allows me to stand up for his needs. Because my son has an independent educational plan (IEP), he is protected. The charter is responsible for my son’s academic success. My son has benefited from hours of services and I have called the shots from day one. But soon I won’t be able to do that anymore.
My son will be an adult soon, and he’ll be in charge of managing his own disabilities, with far less required support. Colleges are only required to provide accommodations, not services, and only if they don’t create an undue burden. They are not required to ensure success, only equal opportunity. Professors do not receive notice of a student’s disability; students approach the instructor. The university is not required to seek out students who need support; the student must prove they need it. In public school, all documentation, testing, and evidence gathering paid for and managed by the school, but many colleges require the family to provide their own documentation at their own expense.
By: Laura Kazan, M.Ed.
Website: www.CollegeSeekers.Education College Seekers is a 501(c)3 organization
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/CollegeSeekers
Facebook Group: CA Homeschool College Seekers
And I won’t necessarily even know if there’s a problem. Once my younger son is an adult, the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) will keep me from receiving information about my son’s schooling, even though I am expected to pay the bill. Legally, the college can’t tell me how my son is doing. If he needs help, if he’s failing classes, if he’s struggling – I will only know these things if he chooses to tell me. I have been my son’s advocate in the public system, both traditional and homeschool charter, since he was 3. When he goes to college, that will end.
So we need to use the remaining time before he leaves college very well. He doesn’t just need to prepare academically; he needs to prepare to manage his own disabilities, to become his own advocate, and to evaluate his own success, and I need to teach him how to do that. It’s another advantage of homeschooling. For years, I was the expert in his disabilities and his accommodations, and now I am teaching him everything I’ve learned.
Obviously, this requires careful planning, and it means that our high school process doesn’t look like most kids – even most kids who homeschool. My son spends as much time learning how to learn – how he learns – as he does learning chemistry or world history. He has discovered alternative note taking formats, methods of organizing his writing that match his unusual nonlinear thinking, and when and how he does his best work. He’s experimenting with adaptive technology and class formats. He has discovered that music is a powerful concentration tool. Next year, his senior year, we will test college readiness through dual enrollment. He can start college before leaving home, before leaving his high school safety net. It will be a final year in which I can help him as he learns to succeed. And that year will be the last time his education will be transparent to me, the last time I can step in. Two years from now he will be a first year college student, a grownup, and it will be up to him.
Homeschooling has allowed my son to learn how to learn. A carefully constructed, personalized high school program has given him a way to reach the future he dreams of. And soon he’ll be out of his safety net, out of the nest, becoming the person he was meant to be.
7pm - 11pm
Ages 12 - 19
Live DJ & Dancing
Snacks & drinks
For more info and to purchase tickets, visit:
Join more than 100 of your fellow homeschool teens for a night of music, dancing and fun!
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Thinking About Homeschooling Because of SB277?
New to homeschooling? Start by downloading our step-by-step guide to starting your homeschool!
We encourage every homeschooler in California to become part of our united effort to keep homeschooling legal in California so that everyone can choose the option that is best for their family.
CHN continues to monitor legislation to ensure that homeschooling remains a legal option in California. Monitored bills include: AB2756, AB2926, SB972, HR610 & HR899.
For updates on these bills visit: https://www.californiahomeschool.net/legislation/
Thinking about homeschooling because of SB277?
SB 277 eliminated the vaccine exemption for children who attend public and private schools. An independent study homeschooling exemption was written for children who are not receiving classroom-based instruction.
The independent study exemption gives parents three educational options to consider if their child is not fully immunized as required by the new law and their child did not have a personal beliefs exemption filed prior to January 1, 2016 (see code for grade span limitations). Those options are to:
File a Private School Affidavit (PSA) and teach your own child at home.
Enroll in a PSP and teach your own child at home.
Enroll in a public ISP or Charter that does not require classroom-based instruction and teach your child at home.
In California , children six and over must be enrolled in a legal school. If you wish to homeschool with a vaccine exemption, your legal options remain the ones above, with your child being taught at home with the family, not a group of unrelated children.
JUST THE FACTS
San Bernardino &
CHN Local Contacts
(San Gabriel Valley)
CHN Local Contacts are homeschooling families who serve as ambassadors to their local communities for California Homeschool Network. We will be happy to answer your questions about homeschooling, refer you to local support groups or private/public ISPs, and keep you abreast of the local legal climate in your county. We also organize homeschool information events and are available to provide you with information on local resources. If your county is not listed below, or if you are unable to reach your local contact, call the Homeschool Hotline toll free at *1(800)327-5339 for answers to your homeschooling questions.
Want to learn more about Legislation, how to become more involved, or contacting your representatives? Check out our newest publication:
Grassroots Homeschool Advocacy
CHN Local Contacts
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Counties not listed are in need of a representative. Please consider volunteering as at CHN Local Contact. For information about how to volunteer as a local contact in your area, contact CHN or call the homeschool hotline at 800-327-5339.
Teacher & Student ID Cards
Martin Forte, along with his wife Carolyn, owns and operate EIE Academy and Excellence In Education Resource Center in Monrovia, California. Martin and his wife successfully homeschooled their two daughters for 14 years. Both girls are college graduates and married with children. Martin has been a homeschool spokesman and advocate for more that 20 years, appearing on numerous radio and television programs and speaking at homeschool conventions as well as on of the co-founders of the California Homeschool Network. He is also a certified Learning Style Coach with his wife Carolyn.
I am very excited to be welcomed to the California Homeschool Network Board of Trustees and I look forward to continuing supporting the homeschool community and personalized education. I am originally from Iowa but Long Beach, CA is now home for my family of three. By day, I am an aspiring urban farmer and homeschool Mom to our science driven 6 year old son. I spend my evenings as a recording artist and singer. I have toured, taught, and performed internationally in 7 countries as well as throughout the U.S., singing at prominent music fests, entertainment venues and private events. Thank you for having me, I look forward to growing with the CHN community!
Board of Trustees
Pam Dowling - When I’m not busy with CHN or dabbling in bookkeeping, I’m teaching beginning sewing to homeschoolers! I find it very rewarding and at times very entertaining. The things kids say! I started my homeschooling journey in 2002 and now my son is a college graduate, has a driver’s license and is employed! They do make it. Homeschooling, like parenting isn’t something you do, it’s something you experience. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. I’m grateful to have the opportunity to stay connected to this wonderful community through my serving on the CHN board of Trustees. CHN provides me with speaking opportunities that I never thought would be something I would immensely enjoy. Given that public speaking is people’s number one fear. But, after I spoke for over two hours at the 2014 Expo and had a dad come up to me after and tell me that he didn’t think they could homeschool their child. They were afraid since they lived across the street from the school but, now they knew what their rights were and they knew they could do it! Then he asked if he could hug me. I’m hooked. It’s the most rewarding part of volunteering for me. Helping to produce Expo is also very rewarding. Expo brings so much to homeschooling families, new and experienced. I am very proud to serve on the CHN Board of Trustee and help CHN fulfill its mission statement.
Rhonda Hamilton is mom to four great kids: Scott (27), Stacy (24), Sean (18), and Rebecca (16), all who were/are homeschooled. She has many roles within CHN: Board of Trustee Treasurer, 800 # Hostess, Email Hostess, Expo Registration Coordinator, and the Non-Profits and Career Fair Coordinator, besides helping out when needed for other activities to make Expo awesome. Besides the many activities within CHN, homeschooling the kids, and working, she just received her MBA with a Specialization in Human Resource Management. She spends her spare time, whenever that may be, reading and hanging out with her kids.
Trina Rueber - I live in Northern California with my fun-loving family where between team sports and my endless to do list; there is never a dull day. I'm a homeschool mom of 18+ years for three awesome children, all born almost a decade apart and each with unique interests and talents. I have a wonderful husband who keeps a blind eye to our creative chaos and my "I'll use it someday" clutter, as he navigates through our Bag of Holding of a home. When I'm not teaching you can find me outside working on our hobby farm complete with goats, sheep, and chickens, or in my studio, where I'm a Jacklyn of all trades, doing everything from woodworking and painting to stain glass and ceramics. I love life, learning exploring and am inspired by a great quote from Abraham Lincoln who once said, "Most folks are as happy as they make their minds to be". I'm thankful to work with such an amazing group of people as I embark on the journey alongside the other Trustees and I am so excited to see what this next year brings for the CHN homeschool community!
Submissions & Advertising
We hope you found our newsletter helpful and that it provided information and activities that are useful to your homeschooling journey.
California Homeschool Network is an all-volunteer organization of energetic and dedicated homeschooling families working to preserve educational freedom. CHN monitors and responds to legislation which may pose a threat to homeschooling. We also inform and empower homeschooling families, educate the public and foster community among home educators in the state of California.
California Homeschool Network
California Homeschool Network was founded in 1994 by a statewide group of homeschooling families. We are an inclusive group, which means we serve families from all religious and ethnic affiliations that practice all homeschooling styles.
To submit articles, curriculum reviews, homeschool information or for questions about content or advertising in upcoming issues of California Homeschool Network's quarterly newsletter, please contact our editor at firstname.lastname@example.org