Bike riding Pool rating [rate how many life guards there are, how crowded things are, others like that] Hikes in the shade Make popsicles out of fruit juice Read, read, read, read, and read – Doodle Bug RedRead More →

Summer has started and it’s getting warmer so we are taking a survey of the pools in the Santa Clara county region. Santa Clara Swim Club Pool Life Guards on duty: 11-12 Pool Depth Pool 1: 3 feet Pool 2: 14 feet Diving Pool: 20 feet Equipment: in great shape Diving Boards: very safe and strong The only problem with this pool is there was a fire a week or two ago and we are not sure of the damage to the equipment. But when we went there it was fun to be in the huge pool! – Doodle Bug TwoRead More →

As the school year comes to an end, I realize that it has been a good year. In fact, the best my kids have ever had. The key? Consistent repetition without worrying about short term achievement. The most exciting project the kids did this year was a year-long history, geography, and literature project covering California. We used a lot of kid creativity and it came out really well!Read More →

The kids and I ran into a great series of short videos online available through the Open University (http://www.open.ac.uk/): 60 second adventures in … Topics covered include mathematics, economics, astronomy, and general science. These are perfect for 4th-12th grade homeschoolers with a witty sense of humor (and their moms too). As the end of our school year is in sight, these have been perfect to add to my kids’ day every so often. They watch each 60 second episode again and again, understanding more of it each time.    Read More →

I just ran into a website called Bedtime Math with absolutely fun daily ideas to incorporate a fun math puzzle into your evening. Each puzzle has options for various age levels so that you can work on the idea with all your kids at once. The ideas look really fun. Yesterday’s puzzle was called the Mad Dog Dash and asked questions about the Iditarod dog sledding race. You can also sign up for emails to be sent to you with the puzzles daily, free. We will give it a go at our house starting tonight! The link is: http://bedtimemath.org/Read More →

A lot of focus is placed on science eduction today, however most of it is really just scientific method practice. Speaking from personal experience, the scientific method is an incredibly simple process with definable steps that is not necessary for children to practice. The result of forcing the incorrect concept that the most important part of science is the scientific process creates children who are bored out of their minds and develop a lifelong distaste for the subject. The fundamental key to enjoying science is gaining practice with the creative spark part of science. That is the fundamental piece that makes a scientist truly great.Read More →

Yeah! A total eclipse of the sun will happen today. We are celebrating in our house and will be watching the eclipse live! The bad news is that it is only visible in the southern hemisphere near Australia. The good news is a group called SLOOH. They own space cameras that you can control yourself and take pictures of space, for a fee. As part of the service you can store your pictures online and also use the image filtering tools the professionals use to create those wonderful pictures of celestial bodies that you find in books. Participating in the program with your child opensRead More →

Sometimes getting out yet another piece of binder paper to write a page summarizing a history lesson is not nearly as valuable to your child than to use the visual display of information to not only summarize what they learned but discover connections between multiple lessons that create the key to remembering and learning. The master of displaying visual information is Edward Tufte, a man with an incredible sense for how to communicate information and ideas. He has written many wonderful books and gives talks around the country at universities and museums. Here is a link to Edward Tufte (www.edwardtufte.com) presenting the display of informationRead More →

Marcus Du Sautoy has done more for my kids’ understanding and love for math (or maths as he puts it in England) than I thought possible. Throughout my educational career, I spent many, many hours studying math. I thought that I really understood all of it. But then I sat down with my kids to listen to a math podcast with Mr. Du Sautoy. Wow. He is able to explain the reasons behind all of mathematics, even the really advanced stuff in a way that makes the concept “sticky” for even the little ones. Beyond his BBC podcasts, Mr. Du Sautoy has a series calledRead More →