Carnival of Homeschooling: There’s More to School Than Textbooks!

Carnival of Homeschooling
Welcome to the 138th Carnival of Homeschooling! If you’re not a year-round schooler, you’re probably thinking of starting soon. Many of our bloggers are too, but a few are thinking differently. I hope you enjoy traveling through the landscape of ideas and inspiration you’ll find here!



Homeschooling is about so much more than textbooks and lesson plans. Here are a few other things you may want to think about including in your learning days:


In Homeschool Games on Successful Homeschooling, Carletta Sanders writes that “playing games is a great way to help your children develop math and language skills, and bond with family members.

Piseco writes about how fun and funky sand molds – in the shape of ancient monuments – open the door to conversation at the playground. Marvelous Molds is posted at Mind Games.


In her ever inspirational blog, Pink Paper Peppermints, Melissa shares how to make A Floating Inspiration Board. This is an idea that could be adapted for all sorts of study aids– just imagine how much fun the kiddies would have creating a mobile of botanical specimens or verb conjugations, to say nothing of doing it just for a fun, creative project!


Why read? In The Common Room, the Headmistress and Zookeeper explains how Books Build Character. There is a point to reading– it’s not just fun and games! But yes, it is fun.

Silvia presents Slingshots, sharing that this was “her daughter’s latest project. Lots to learn from this, from construction to use.” It’s posted at Po Moyemu–In My Opinion.


In “God, Emily, and You!,” Kimmie, who writes at Over the Moon with Joy, shares their progress in the adoption of an Ethiopian orphan, and invites us all to share the journey with their family as they seek to minister to others, one sweet child at a time. Now there’s a homeschool project for you!


At The Jacobite Rose, we are invited to Remember author and artist Tasha Tudor, who lived an extraordinary life. She died in June, and there will be a remembrance and celebration on her birthday, August 28. She was an artist whose whimsical illustrations connected well with children, so your students may enjoy learning more about her.

Sagar Satapathy presents 100 Essential Web Tools for Homeschoolers posted at Smart Teaching. I found a lot of interesting and useful things in this post.


As you budget for the coming year, Like Merchant Ships offers a roundup her series on How to Live Well on Less. I think you’ll enjoy this a lot!

Jessie Meacham declares, “I Quit Budgeting!” in his tongue-in-cheek post at
You Need a Budget (also known as the only budget software that makes sense, even to non-math people!). Why? He says, “No, it’s not because I struck it rich (most millionaires budget, even though they’re millionaires). I’m just sick of budgeting.” Yeah, right… If you want your children to see the value of budgeting, share this post!

Christine Moers presents I have no GPS, but I’m addicted to Geocaching posted at welcome to my brain . net. She reveals that ” Our family has discovered geocaching, and all of its benefits to our brains and family dynamics!”

Janice comments: I just recently heard of this when a reader submitted “staycation ideas” for my e-zine, and it sounds like fun. I think we’re going to try it (though we don’t have a GPS either). I’ll be sending out the e-zine later today, with a lot more staycation ideas and other good information. If you’re not on my list but would like to receive it, be sure to sign up in the box in the column to your right.

At The HomeSpun Life, Sisterlisa writes of her concern for teens in “Save the Children.”

Dana writes another thought-provoking post– A homeschooled child’s view of school — and it’s posted at one of my favorite blogs, Principled Discovery.

NerdMom has an epiphany about homeschooling, detailed in Nerd Family: I know you are a good homeschooler but… posted at Nerd Family. (Don’t you just love those “but’s”!


Natalie Criss offers a new and delightful homeschool interpretation of Gloria Gaynor’s classic, “I Will Survive,” at her Ramblings, Rants, and Remedies blog. It’s a classic! (For those who stopped by before, the original link was to another site that had posted the lyrics without attribution. We’re grateful that Alasandra provided the correct link. Thanks too, to Natalie, who was happy to share.)


Of course, there’s always potential violence in the schools. Amanda at Wittingshire, writes about how one school district in Texas is dealing with the problem. What do you want to bet that there won’t be even a hint of violence here?


Thomas J. West presents Who’s Running This Show? The Body/Mind Ego and How It Affects Your Results posted at Music Education Practice Tips (Thomas J. West Music). Although this is written with music practice in mind, it’s applicable in many areas. A very helpful post.

“In response to several e-mails we have recently received from home school moms who are overwhelmed and fearful about their ability to choose the right curriculum, plan the correct outside activities, have everything organized in time for the new school year, etc., Epi Kardia Home Education presents Do Not Fear! posted at Epi Kardia Home Education.”


Are you getting ready for the new school year? The Cates are thinking about it too, in Ramping up for the new school year at “Why Homeschool.” Henry writes about how he and his wife homeschool through the year.

At Melissa’s Idea Garden we read about A New 4-H Year…and Two Officers Reside With Me in which Melissa “shares a bit about 4-H and how my kids are enjoying it and learning from it.”


In the amusingly named post, Faraday’s Cage is where you put Schroedinger’s Cat – Does this planet make me look fat? posted at Faraday’s Cage is where you put Schroedinger’s Cat, Cherish presents an interesting physics lesson


In Creative writing, The Reluctant Homeschooler writes, “Yes, we’ve already started school, but only a couple of subjects. Among them is English. I’m stressing writing this year, so I’ve come up with a series of topics that I want the kids to write about. But first, I created a sample piece, an essay about a sound and the memories that it triggers…”

In Homeschooled Twins: 6 ways mushrooms can save the world, Mycologist Paul Stamets studies the mycelium — and lists 6 ways that this astonishing fungus can help save the world. You can read it at Homeschooled Twins.

In Homeschooler Megan featured in Discovery Girls Magazine, posted at Beverly’s Homeschooling Blog at, you can read about a Nevada homeschooled student featured in the current issue of Discovery Girls Magazine and find out how your daughter can be featured for her state.

Elisheva Levin presents Now That School is a Choice: A Homeschooling Legacy posted at Ragamuffin Studies. “As the years of homeschooling end, I thought it good to reflect on the legacy of homeschooling for ourselves and our children. This is the end of our homeschooling years, but not of our unschooled lives. This will of necessity be my last submission to this carnival, and I wanted a chance to say Shalom! Until we meet again!”

Janice says: Thank you, Elisheva, for your thoughtful contributions to the Carnival of Homeschooling. Always know that we welcome homeschool-related submissions from “retired” home educators. There is a lot of wisdom among the pioneers, and I believe that new homeschoolers enjoy hearing from those who have gone before.

Stephanie presents My Little Teacher posted at Adventures in the 100 Acre Wood. You may also want to read the piglet post, unless you’re squeamish. Your children will probably find it interesting (“Mommy, can we have piggies?”).


Lance Recker writes about Hackers, Identity Theft and your Homeschool Family in his blog, Home Educate in the Sunshine State. – In a time when identity theft is becoming a very real threat, protecting our families from ID theft is highly important. What follows are a few tips you can follow to guard your family.
Sarah Small muses about “how and why my homeschooled kids ‘play school.'” Playing School in SmallWorld
Epi Kardia Home Education presents heartwarming counsel in Do Not Fear!, posted at Epi Kardia Home Education

Carol Topp, CPA discusses homeschool groups purchasing a building, and asks for feedback from anyone who has done it. HomeschoolCPA – A Homeschool Building posted at HomeschoolCPA – Homeschool Blogger.
Renae presents I Did Not Teach My Children the Alphabet posted at Life Nurturing Education.

Stephen Hawkins of A Dominion Family has gathered a collection of Bible verses applicable to Christian homeschool families in the post, “Verses to encourage home educators” at Waters to Swim In.
Cristina presents “Seize the educational opportunity!” at Carpe Degrium! posted at Home Spun Juggling.
The 3 Moms presents Grocery Shopping and Sales Fliers posted at Happy to be at Home.

Greg and Martine Millman, the authors of “Homeschooling: A Family’s Journey,” published on August 14 by Tarcher-Penguin, presents Used Book Eurekas! What?s Yours? posted at Homeschooling: A Family’s Journey.
In connection with the Beijing Olympics, Kim presents a China Unit Study at Works in Progress.

I always feel nostalgic for the years when my four boys were young when I look at Sarah’s blog. This week, she presents Animal Classification at It’s a Boy’s Life.

Sarah Scrafford presents The U.S. Department of Education?s Recommendations For Online Students posted at Online
Heather Johnson presents Why Teachers Take Advantage of Their Students posted at JailBeta.


In The Life Without School Blog
, Cindy suggests that To Copy Is To Cheat; Or Is It?
“Plagiarism is for profiteering; cheating is for institutions. Using someone else’s expertise in order to gain better techniques through modeling, copying, or tracing as a form of learning can be just plain smart.”
HowToMe presents How To Fold a Fitted Sheet (guest submission) posted at HowToMe.
Louise Manning presents Holding Children Back posted at The Human Imprint.
Summer presents Kumon Workbooks For The Addictive posted at Roots, Shoots & Fruits.
Janet is “Gearing Up,” and you can read all about it at Findings.

Make a preschool learning center and get links to preschool printables as Kris B presents Learning Center posted at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers.
In Quiet Kids, posted at Barbara Frank Online, we read author Barbara Frank’s thoughts about a quiet child who enjoyed learning the Charlotte Mason way– all except for narration. I completely sympathize with him– I was a quiet child, and I remember hating to repeat things I knew, just for the sake of repeating them. It’s something to think about!

Would you like to know how to write and plan your own unit studies? Kris B presents How to Plan Unit Studies (Part One), which you’ll find at The Homeschool Classroom.
Dawn Adams presents curriculum shopping when you’re “Deep in the Throes of Addiction,” posted at Day by Day Discoveries. Is there a twelve-step program?


How about a few book and product reviews?

At Higher Up and Further In, one of my favorite bloggers, Lindafay, offers an insightful review of Teaching Textbooks.


Erica Burgan presents So Much More Than A Lesson Planner!! And a great Giveaway! posted at The Sojourner

NerdMom presents The Old Schoolhouse: Digital Version posted at Nerd Family Things.

Flo Basuil writes about “For Homeschool Planning Sake” at Yielded Heart.

She’s “recommending Homeschool Tracker- a homeschool planning and record keeping software that has been a great tool for our family, talking about a couple of features that have been useful for us.


From my own archives, I’ll share Frequently Asked Questions about High School Transcripts and Add a Microbusiness to Your Teen’s Curriculum. There are other posts on planning and recordkeeping through high school, so feel free to browse!


Finally, even though homeschooling isn’t just about textbooks, most of us do celebrate the coming of fall with a bit of re-organization. If you need help with record-keeping, organization, and setting up your home to learn, here is a resource I found, loved, and think you would enjoy.

Cindy Rushton asks: “Would you love to spend an afternoon–or a week–with another homeschool mom and plan out the details of your school year?” You CAN! With her “New Organized Mom Super Set!“, containing

  • Great e-books
  • Audio MP3’s
  • Planning Pages

Plus- two very valuable extras added for free!

  • Cindy’s Organization 911 Seminar Set, AND
  • Her newest seminar set, Let’s Get Organized for the New School Year.

Yep! Both! Complimentary! You may CLICK HERE to read more about it or to get your set now!

Cindy’s style is warm, friendly, and down-to-earth. She’s an experienced homeschool mom, writer, and speaker, and she offers practical, useful tips and planning aids that you can start using today. You’ll be inspired by the audios that will help to keep you on track all year. I highly recommend this planning resource.

22 Responses

  1. HowToMe says:

    Thank you kindly 🙂

  2. Lance Recker says:

    Thanks for the opportunity to participate in this carnival.


  3. Stephanie says:

    Well done on a huge carnival!
    And thanks for the bonus link to the piglets! 🙂

  4. Wow…where to start? Thanks for including my post, and also the cover of my book—that was really nice!

  5. Thanks for including my post! I always mean to enter the carnival, and I always forget.

  6. Kimmie says:

    WOWWWW-ie Janice….

    This is an incredible post, with an incredible amount of work on your part. (How could I have not known about this….wow, what a great connection for homeschoolers!) I could probably live just on this post for 6 months! 😉 Great job.

    Thanks so much for linking to our blog and ‘promoting’ our adoption. I am getting so excited, because I think we are only a month or two away from referral and then maybe a month longer (maybe a tad more) to go and bring them home.

    thanks so much-for helping us with the Kingdom business God is calling us to.


    mama to 6
    one homemade and 5 adopted

  7. Cristina says:

    The Carnival looks great. Thanks for taking the time to put it all together and thank you for including my post!

  8. Thanks for taking the time to put all of these posts together! Lots of great information here! And thanks for including my post!

  9. Alasandra says:

    Janice, thank you for taking the time to leave a comment on my blog. The SPAM filter probably ate your emails. I will check later when I am at my computer.

    I think you handle the situation the best way you could.

  10. Lance Recker says:

    If any of you had trouble accessing my article, please contact me to let me know.

    And if didn’t have an issue, please let me know if you found it helpful!

    Nice job on the carnival post, by the way.


  11. hall monitor says:

    All supporters of home-schooling should check out to remind themselves of all the problems with public education.

  12. Thank you for including my article in your carnival

  13. Pam says:

    Wow, thanks so much for all the info… time for me to get busy! 🙂

  14. Jane says:

    Excellent job, even though you didn’t choose us!

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