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May 1, 2013 


Finishing the Homeschool Race Well  



Deborah's  Picture
Deborah Wuehler 
and family


Our family went on a bike ride this weekend. We felt like the Von Trapp family as eight of us cycled down the road and onto the bike path. We sang and laughed and enjoyed God's creation. The feeling of content that we have when the whole family is together is like no other. Sounds lovely, doesn't it?


Let me tell you the rest of the story  

. . .


It took three hours to work on all of the bikes to get them in working condition. Three hours of sweaty children asking, "Is it time to go yet?" (It's already hot here in sunny California!) Three hours of tired attitudes to contend with as inner tubes were patched and chains repaired and the general maintenance that eight bikes requires.


This was our 4-year-old's second day of riding without training wheels. And we decided to pick this day to have a family bike ride--very interesting parenting choice, indeed.  I spent most of the time walking my bike next to him and encouraging him along as the others raced ahead. There were lots of tears shed because he was either afraid of going too fast or falling down or was too tired. But we pushed through to the end, and amazingly, he was so happy, he wanted to ride again within an hour of getting home.


As I contemplated the afternoon, I saw several parallels to the homeschooling journey.


It takes a lot of preparation and often some hard work to go on a big journey. Homeschooling is a big journey. The preparation and hard work will pay off--but we have to make an intentional decision to set other things aside and get ready to go. It is a daily choice to put aside something else and do the hard stuff. We must put aside procrastination, comparisons, distractions, and weariness, and get down to the hard work of finding out the problem areas with our children, and working with them towards solutions.


Bad attitudes will arise, whether in your children or yourself, and can be caused by minor irritations or daily frustrations. Look up from those for a minute and look forward to the race set before you. You must fight that enemy of selfish ambition, and look toward that contented moment of being in stride with your family right where God wants you to be.

The kids were right next to their dad learning how to repair their bikes so that they could do it themselves the next time. It was sometimes tedious and not always easy, but they pushed through, and now they have an idea of how to help themselves in the future.


This is our goal of education; having our children learn right alongside us so that they grow in independence. It's going from riding with training wheels to riding with ease, but in between we will all have some wobbling times and falls with scrapes and bruises. But we teach our kids to get up and keep going; especially when they see us press through the hard times in prayer and confidence in God ourselves.


If we prepare and start well and hang on during the rough times and the tears--if we cling tightly to the LORD, we will enjoy a beautiful contentedness of finishing the race well. You can do this. You can keep your children Home Where They Belong.


This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is thy faithfulness. Lamentations 3:21-22



TOS Senior Editor    


P.S. If you've hit a bump in the road, and you don't know what to do, the May digital editorial should give you some encouragement: It is aptly titled, "I Don't Know What to Do!"  


Crown College
Christian college; homeschool friendly. Since 1916, Crown College, near Minneapolis, remains an exceptional college
passionate in preparing Christians to serve and influence
the world.


Finishing the Homeschool Race Well


Have you ever watched athletes running a race? Have you ever seen one refuse to leave the track when the race is over, running lap after lap long after the finish line had been reached?


Of course not. An athlete knows when his or her race is finished. If they don't stop running, they will eventually collapse on the track. I will never live long enough to finish everything on my to-do list because I can't stop adding things to it. That's okay in some areas of life--certain dreams, hopes, and goals will never reach fulfillment on this earth.


That is not okay when it comes to your homeschool race this year. When you reach the finish line, stop. Don't keep adding to the end. Don't fret over unfinished textbooks or that elective you meant to teach but didn't. Stop. For 24 hours, let your homeschooling to do list be completed. Don't add to it. Don't plan ahead. Don't regret the past. Be finished.


You might find you enjoy the feeling so much that you stretch those 24 hours into 48 or 72, and that is perfectly permissible!


The journey of teaching your children will never end, but the same is not true of the journey of homeschooling your children this year. Reach the end. Celebrate the victory with your family and friends.


When you're ready to pick up your to do list again, remember is here 24/7/365 with more than 50 classes to help you cross more than a few things off of your list. A perfect place to start is our new Site Directory page. This page breaks down by course category the offerings of our 32 current Teachers; 10 prior Teachers, whose courses are now archived on the site; 19 daily units, and all of the extra resources you'll find on our site. Each listing indicates the appropriate grade levels of the class and gives a quick overview of its content.


Take a few moments to catch your breath when you reach the finish line this year. When it comes time to grab the sneakers and water bottle for next year's race, make sure you take along with you. We're here to help make the homeschool race as easy as Point. Click. Teach.


Bonnie Rose Hudson

Editorial Assistant


Join Today  

Psychology: A Christian Perspective, High School Edition by Dr. Tim Rice introduces homeschoolers to the study of God's grandest creation--the human mind. Psychology is the most worldview-challenging class Christian students take in college. Many are not prepared to recognize the worldview assumptions underlying its modern theories. Prepare them.

Want a Strong Marriage, Strong Family, and a Strong Homeschool? Find your strength at the FPEA Florida Homeschool Convention! Check it out at
The Familyman

Todd Wilson
Todd Wilson
Todd Wilson, Familyman Ministries 

Greetings from Tulsa, OK. What a day we've had. Last night, a car crashed into our RV and now 24 hours later, we're up and running when I thought the RV would never run again. Wow, talk about an emotional roller coaster. I'm exhausted, and I know some of you are too because of something you're facing right now.


Here are my tired thoughts on finishing the homeschool year well: who cares how you finish . . . just make sure you do finish.  Start planning now to quit for the summer. In just a few weeks, STOP. Don't do any school, teaching, or learning over the summer. Just relax, have fun, and enjoy your children. 


McDonald's was right . . . you deserve a break today.


So ends all of my post-crash wisdom. 


Be real and pray for us!



P.S. First person to come to my booth in Tulsa and OKC and sing the Oklahoma song gets a free audio CD of their choice.  


The ultimate frugal vacation  

is a "staycation" . . . .   

Molly Green
Are you struggling to plan for your family vacation because of gas prices, the cost of staying in a hotel, and food prices? Molly Green just may have the answers to your family vacation dilemma! Check out Molly's tips for inexpensive summer vacation ideas in the May issue of TOS magazine


Make History Fun!

With Dover Publications Educational Activities



Diana Waring
Diana Waring

Relational Homeschooling 


Dear Friends,


Finishing the homeschool race well means finishing.


Now, this does not mean that you have to finish every book or every conversation or every subject or every project. We all have lots of unfinished projects and business and books in our lives.



Finishing implies, though, that we prepare our hearts and minds to let our children go. When the moment arrives, let them walk out the door.


I've thought a lot about this, because I've had to let all three of my children go to live their own lives, to fulfill their own dreams, and to walk the paths the Lord has set out for them.


And, I tell you the truth, it's not easy. Once you get to the point that they are young adults, when the conversations are fascinating and in-depth, when they have become such a vital part of your home (and workforce!), it is incredibly wrenching to let them go.


But, here's the deal. Though God gave you the precious privilege of being a steward of these children for a few short years, at the end of the day, they do not belong to you. They are HIS creation, HIS children . . . and He has a plan and a purpose for them that is beyond your comprehension.


And, in order for them to step out onto that path, they need to step out the door--and keep going.


To finish well, one word of advice: Imagine your little children as fully functioning adults, living outside of your home. What you say to them today--and how you say it--will impact the relationship you have with them as adults. I want to encourage you to enjoy them, to like them, and to delight in them now. It pays HUGE dividends when they are grown!!


Remember, stay relational.




P.S. I'm in Tulsa, Oklahoma! If you are at OCHEC, come say "Hi!" I'd love to meet you!!


Graduation can be a spiritually meaningful and memorable occasion for your family! Seize the opportunity to testify to the goodness of God. We have ideas for your celebration, beautiful graduation announcements with a Christian emphasis, and quality honors items. We offer striking, professionally printed diplomas. Please visit us at


 Be encouraged, enlightened, and 

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Click here to learn more!


Hal & Melanie Young

Raising Real Men  


Paul often speaks of the Christian life as a race. "One thing I do," he said, "forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead, I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Jesus Christ." (Philippians 3:13-14 NKJV) And we shouldn't obsess over things which can't be changed or fixed. We've seen God make up for our mistakes and deficiencies or change the importance of things we once thought were crucial, but later discovered were no longer necessary.


But the successful runner had to do one other thing to reach the goal--he had to know what the goal was so that he could run the race with endurance, and according to the rules. (Hebrews 12:1 and 1 Corinthians 9:24)


We homeschoolers can easily be distracted by the worthwhile things which we find along the track. They may be good things, and worthy of striving for, but are they the most critical things? Can we pursue them and still not let go of the most important part of our homeschooling race? Why did we start this race to begin with; and if our aims have changed, did they change on purpose after prayerful consideration or did we somehow drift into a different track?


We're about to graduate our third son this month, and after many years of homeschooling quite successfully by most measures, we've realized the true goal was not a comprehensive classical education, or admission to a prestigious college, or awards and recognitions for academic excellence. All that is fine in its place. But what is good, and what does the Lord require of you? "To do justly, To love mercy, And to walk humbly with your God" (Micah 6:8 NKJV)


Ultimately our homeschooling effort is about discipleship--have we prepared our sons and daughters to be in a right relationship with God and the communities around them? Part of that is academic, certainly, but so much more is about practical life in the home, the church, and God's broader kingdom. Don't lose sight of that fact!


Yours in the Battle,

Hal and Melanie


For more on finishing the race well, get our workshops, "Homeschooling is NOT Enough" and "Never Give Up" at this link.

To hear us in person, head over to this page  to see when we'll be in your area! We'll be closer than you think!


Coming up in May . . .
Homeschooling the High Schooler--You Can Do It!

Featuring Ray and Charlene Notgrass     

Homeschooling a high school student can seem intimidating, but it is simply the next step in training your child to live well as an adult. Ray and Charlene Notgrass homeschooled for twenty years. They will have words of encouragement and practical wisdom to help you be confident about this phase of your child's educational journey. Ray and Charlene are homeschool curriculum writers with


Transcripts Made Easy: 
The High School Transcript as a Marketing Tool  
featuring Janice Campbell

A high school transcript may be the most important piece of
paper created during your student's homeschool experience. More than just a list of what your student studied or an outline of the grades received, it's like a résumé-a marketing tool that should highlight your student's strengths and skills. Join Janice Campbell, from, as she teaches us how to select the best format, effectively name classes, decide on weighted grades, and present information in a clean, professional style that is easily comparable to others. You might find yourself getting fan mail from college admissions counselors who appreciate your work!        


Sign up for the Expo here!


Join our Free Online Schoolhouse Expo on 
Tuesday, May 28, at 7 p.m. EST! 

(6 p.m. CDT, 5 p.m. MDT, 4 p.m. PDT) 


Check out all the details at


Reserve your FREE seat now--only 1,000 available! 





Take a fun and interesting look at The Story of Energy and Its Exciting Future with a free E-Book unit study. Students will explore energy production and consumption in the U.S. Simply email for your FREE copy and also to learn how to get potential discounts/savings on your energy bills.



Creation Revolution     


In some areas of the Namib, the flat sands are covered with thousands of strange circles. For years, no one really knew how or why the formed, so they were referred to as 'fairy circle.'
Read more in the article Fairy Circles of the Namib Desert.
Contest Corner 

For the month of May, 2013  


52 Weeks of Family Spanish


Learning a foreign language is a goal of most homeschooling families. And there are many options to choose from; ranging from traditional worksheet/textbook curriculums, to verbal immersion programs. 52 Weeks of Family Spanish, by Eileen McAree, follows more of a verbal approach and is meant to be used with the whole family. The small weekly lessons are practical and built into daily family life. This simple approach makes teaching Spanish to young ones fun and easy.


The sub-title of this book caught my attention right away: "Bite-sized weekly lessons designed to get you and your family speaking Spanish today." That was what I was looking for; something to get my children more familiar with Spanish in preparation for a middle school or high school classes in the later years. And this fun book provided that and more. The 52 weeks in this curriculum are divided into 7 units. Each unit has a different theme and cultural spotlight. Some of the themes are Mealtimes, Welcome To My Home, and Making Friends. The cultural spotlights focus on different countries where Spanish is one of the primary languages spoken. The design of this curriculum is very simple. For each week there are a few vocabulary words or phrases and a pronunciation/grammar note. These directly correlate with the vocabulary words. For example when the word hola is taught, the pronunciation note is about the letter h being silent in Spanish. Each week also has a cultural note. This small paragraph might highlight different types of food, geographical features of the area, or other fun facts and details. Finally, there is an Idea! section. This part gives suggestions for fun activities to do during the week. This might be role-playing a conversation, playing with a piñata, fun Spanish games, and other interesting activities to help make the week's lesson fun. At the beginning of the book are some helpful pages; there is an instruction section for the teacher, a pronunciation guide, suggested activities, and a words and phrase list. Every eighth week or so is a review week and review ideas and further study suggestions are listed. (. . .)


Read the rest of the review here.


TO ENTER: Email Heather with your name, mailing address, and phone number for contact purposes, with the subject line, "52 Weeks of Spanish" for a chance to win* the book for your homeschool! 

The Old Schoolhouse Magazine  
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