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E-News Issue #6 February 2008
 Promoting and Protecting the Freedoms of HomeschoolersGreetings!

Ho, hum.  The day in, day out routine of life and homeschooling has hit again with winter dragging on in some areas of the province.  Many of you may be feeling discouraged and down, especially when the kids don't want to cooperate or get the work done that they need to.  That being said, our household has all had the flu and also being the new editor to the BCHLA Newsletter, I hope you will forgive any inconsistancies and errors you may find in this newsletter.  Your patience is greatly appreciated!


We want to encourage you and let you know you are doing a good thing.  You are the absolute best possible person to teach YOUR children and its okay to 'redeem the day' by doing something out of the ordinary - maybe visit a seniors home as they too are feeling the doldrums of a long winter ('social' studies); have your children start making Easter cards to give to their friends and family (arts and crafts - plus you'll feel great for getting it done early); do some Easter baking with the kids (science and math); go for a long walk looking for signs of spring (science) or where there is still lots of snow, build that one last snowman(science - engineering);  write a letter to a friend and tell them how much you appreciate them and have the kids do the same (language arts); put on some up beat music, sing along and clean out the closets (music/life skills/home economics) - the list is as long as your imagination. Each and everything we do with our children is an experience in learning.


Spring is just around the corner.  The snow has begun to melt, the days are getting longer, the sun is beginning to warm our living rooms, the daffodils and crocus' are in bloom (at least in Victoria!!) and winter is just about over.  Many are working on spring cleaning and opening up windows to let the fresh air in.  When the doldrums set in with the monotony of the everyday, let's 'redeem the day'.  Let's think of what we can give away, rather than what we can receive and we will receive oh so much more! 


So just because the math assignments and spelling tests aren't all getting done everyday, doesn't mean our kids aren't doing 'school'.  Be encouraged, keep your chin up and know that you are not alone and don't be afraid to 'Redeem the day'!!
President's Pen

With the news that schools were expected to include homeschool students in the Foundational Skills Assessment, the BCHLA  phone was ringing with questions.  "Were homeschool children supposed to be included?"  "Do we have to pressure families to participate?"  "What do the homeschool bylaws state?"  "Must I send my kids for this test?"

We contacted the office of the FSA as well as the Ministry of Education regarding this matter. After receiving clarification regarding the expectations of who should take the FSA, we sent a special notice reminding families of their rights. Conversations will continue as we seek to have the wording of the FSA manual edited to reflect the current policies regarding testing of homeschool children.  Testing is not 'expected' of a homeschooler, rather it is to be offered.  Homeschoolers are supposed to be invited to take testing.  We at BCHLA are keeping on top of this issue and will advise as information becomes available.


BCHLA is excited to be hosting a Used Curriculum Fair in the lower mainland this spring. Start sorting through all those books and curriculums, price them appropriately, box them up and bring them down to the Used Curriculum Fair.  For registered families, especially, this will be an excellent opportunity to save $$ on next years school supplies.  Tables for selling will be free to BCHLA members and $10 per table for non-members.  Admission for shopping will be free to members and a loonie per person for non-members. Your membership must be current as of the date of the fair. We will also be taking new memberships at the curriculum fair and those who join BCHLA will be given free table rental as well as admission for shopping.


The BCHLA Annual General Meeting will be held in the Guildford area on Friday, June 6, 2008.   Please make plans to attend this important meeting.  We will be sending out an agenda at least two weeks before the AGM.  We look forward to seeing you there!


Sherri Piechnik


Homeschool to Higher Ed - Graduation

Start Thinking Now!

By: Steve Murphy


When most Canadian students and their families ask the question, "how accessible is university or college for our family?", they're usually referring to the cost of tuition, textbooks, laptops, accommodation, and the countless unforeseen expenses that could put a strain on the family's finances.


For a student who has been home-schooled or home-educated, there is an added and more basic matter to consider.  The first question these students probably ask will be, "how am I going to convince the post-secondary institution that the education I've received at home has adequately prepared me for the courses I want to take?"  When these students look for answers to this question, they often find that many Canadian universities and colleges don't have policies that clearly specify the process and requirements for students educated at home to apply to their institution.


So what are home-schooled and home-educated students to do? 

Carousel Theater Hobbit ad  
Studying hardThe Right Education for Your Child
When it comes to a child's education, the days are long gone when parents simply sent their kids to the nearest public school. Today, parents can choose from a number of education options, including private schools, home schooling, charter schools and even "virtual" schooling. With so many options, how can parents know which one is the right choice for their child? Authors Kurt and Olivia Bruner discuss how they chose a different education option for each of their children based on the child's needs. You'll also hear from other parents who explain how they settled on the best education for their children.

"Don't assume one size fits all ... Get the help, get the information, and your child's going to do great if you're involved, no matter what [education] option you choose." - Kurt Bruner
JALC Homestay  


   If education is always to be conceived along the same antiquated lines of a mere transmission of knowledge, there is little to be hoped from it . . . . For what is the use of transmitting knowledge if the individual's total development lags behind?

--Maria Montessori

Dad & Son PhotographingHomeschooling: Why Dads Should Get Involved  Part 1
When it comes to home schooling, mothers are traditionally seen as the primary instructors, but you'll hear why it's important for fathers to be involved, too. Robby McGee, president of humanitarian organization New Life International, explains why he chose to home school his teenage son. In addition, Michael Farris, co-founder of the Home School Legal Defense Association, discusses the state of the home education movement today and the legal challenges it's faced. Finally, Farris' wife, Vicki, encourages parents to consider home schooling as she describes the great satisfaction she's experienced in educating her children.

"[A school principal once] said something that I never will forget. He said, 'Robby, you will never regret the opportunity that home schooling is going to afford you to be the primary influence in your son's life.'" - Robby McGee 
Look for Part 2 in the next newsletter!
Parliament HillACCESS OTTAWA

Access Ottawa is a week-long, inside look at Ottawa for high school age students. It is run by Trinity Western University from their Ottawa base, the Laurentian Leadership Centre, so is taught from a Christian perspective. Homeschoolers will recognize the value in this experience-based program that focuses on the institutions of government as well as responsible citizenship. It is intended for students 16 to 18 years of age.

CLICK HERE  for more information and a downloadable application form.

Please note: The deadline for applications for homeschoolers is Saturday, March 15. The dates of the program are April 20-26.

Child writingPostcard Story Contest
Can you tell a story in less than 200 words? The Young Writers Club thinks you can.
The creative writing club is holding its annual student "Postcard Story Contest", which is open to anyone, regardless of where they live.
The only rules are that the story must start with the line "What did you say?" she asked, startled and wrap up in 200 words or less.
Entries must include a name, address, grade, phone number and email address, if applicable, and be mailed to YWC Postcard Story Contest, 4656 Hoskins Rd. , North Vancouver , V7K 2R1 , or emailed to
Top prize for the high school and elementary school winners is $50; one entry per person is allowed.

The Young Writers' Club is a North Vancouver-based program run under the auspices of the Lynn Valley Literary Society. In its third year, it offers its members a monthly newsletter, publication and contest opportunities, workshops and a members-only web forum. For more information, visit or call 604-986-8547.

Remember, deadline is March 15th, so start thinking now!

                            Upcoming Events

BCHLA Directors will be in attendance at the following conventions this year:

BC CHEC Convention, April 18 - 19, 2008, Kelowna, BC
BC Homeschool Convention, June 5 - 7, 2008, Surrey, BC

Please come by the booth and introduce yourself! We love meeting members and getting a chance to talk "face to face"!
In This Issue
President's Pen
Homeschool to Post-Secondary...
The Right Education for Your Child
Why Dads Should Get Involved P1
Access Ottawa
Postcard Story Contest
Membership Renewal
E-Mail Policy
Contact Information




 Friday, June 7, 2008

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"I never let school get in the way of my education."

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Web Favourites
This Month:
Free Math Games/Programs

Looking for more math programs?  Google 'free math programs'.

If you have favourite links please send them to us so we can share them with other homeschoolers.
BC Homeschool Conventions/Expos
June 5-7, 2008
Surrey, BC
Watch for Registration Deadline

April 18 & 19, 2008 Kelowna, BC
Early Bird Registration Deadline:  March 14/08
May 23, 2008
Abbotsford, BC
Pre-Registration Required

Boy Swimming

One day I was waiting on the bleachers with my friend and her son James, while my son was taking "homeschool swimming lessons." A teacher walked over and asked young James (about 10) what it was like to "stay at home all day and not have any friends." James, well-known in our circles for his outgoing manner and unlimited capacity for socializing, said politely and with a smile, "If I were any more socialized, I'd need a personal secretary."

Virtual Science Fair

2008 Canada Wide Virtual Science Fair

Homeschoolers Welcome
Registration Deadline
February 28, 2008


More Information

Register Now

Used Books Forumming Events

Don't forget to check out to buy and sell your used curriculum!

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