quiver of arrows sarah plain and tall brave writer
Brave Writer Lifestyle, Reading and Writing

Using Brave Writer’s Quiver of Arrows: Sarah, Plain and Tall

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It never fails to amaze me how effective simple things can be when it comes to homeschooling. Copywork–probably the most basic of concepts you could possible conceive of–can cover everything from spelling to handwriting to grammar to punctuation and composition. Dictation and French dictation–also very simple as in concept–reinforce all of these. Put them together, Continue Reading

what a week of brave writer looks like
Brave Writer Lifestyle

A Week in the Life of a Brave Writer Family

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I’m not really sure which aspect of the Brave Writer lifestyle I fell in love with first. Was it our first poetry teatimes, calling out Shel Silverstein poems over the roar of the jungle rain? Or the permission to devour audiobook after audiobook as we drive through forests and fields together, and call it school? Or was it the idea that the excited words of my tiny daughters as they told me stories were the very first seeds of their writing selves, and that I should catch them on a page like a teacup catching rain, so they could see the significance of their ideas? Continue Reading

homeschooling in an apartment
Homeschool

Less is More: 7 Tips for Homeschooling in a Small Space

The beginning of the new year must mean reorganizing and decorating, because there’s been a lot of talk about how to arrange small spaces for homeschooling in the Facebook groups. “How do you arrange a homeschool space when you don’t have an extra room?” “Does anyone homeschool in a small apartment?” “We are moving into a tiny house this year. Does anyone one else homeschool out of a really small home? What does it look like for you?” Continue Reading

Take it outside: ridiculously easy steam for nature play
Homeschool, Nature Study, S.T.E.A.M.

Take it Outside: Ridiculously Easy S.T.E.A.M. for Nature Play

Peanut butter and jelly. Peas and carrots. Peaches and cream. STEAM and nature study.

Yes, they belong together that much. This isn’t a new concept, it’s just that back in the olden days when we were kids, they didn’t call it “STEAM” (or “science, technology, engineering, art, and math.”) But we built forts, bridges, and hide-aways none the less. We forged ramps for our bikes, pulleys to get snacks to the top of the tree, and leaf crowns for our heads. We rigged up makeshift roller coasters, launched pinecones with homemade catapults, and sent crude little boats down drainage ditches. Most of us spent our childhood steeped in STEAM outside, from the time the sun came up until the street lights came on. Continue Reading

on homeschool curriculum: commit to the journey, not the map
Brave Writer Lifestyle, Homeschool, Parenting

On Homeschool Curriculum: Commit to the Journey, Not the Map

Let’s get one thing out in the open, right from the start:

Curriculum is there to work for you. You are NOT bound to work for it.

No, you do NOT have to follow it, verbatim, as-prescribed, day-by-day, task-by-task. No, you are not going to mess up your child’s entire education if you veer from it from time to time. No, you are not “ruining everything” if you ditch it after six weeks because it’s making you or your child miserable. Continue Reading

The Three Non-Negotiables of Our Homeschool Day: Go outside, read, and wonder.
Homeschool, Parenting

The 3 Non-Negotiables of Our Homeschool Day

With all of the ideas and resources available to homeschoolers today, it can be really hard to resist the urge to do all the things. One hour on Pinterest and you can rack up a pretty hefty list of crafts to do, unit studies to execute, math games to try, and field trips to plan. Sometimes these fit in seamlessly with our existing plans. Sometimes, they forcefully wedge into them like linebackers, tackling any sense of rhythm we’ve worked so hard to establish and Continue Reading

what a day of homeschool looks like for an entrepreneurial mom
Homeschool, Homeschool Planning, Parenting

What a Day of Homeschool Looks Like For an Entrepreneurial Momma

Every week, the same question comes up in one Facebook group or another: “Does anyone here work from home and homeschool?” A chorus of responses rolls out with every kind of answer. Some homeschoolers work a farm while homeschooling, some parents run an Etsy shop full of beautiful hand-made products. Some sell essential oils, make-up, or health supplements. Some work as a VA or an editor. Some are transcriptionists, some are writers, and some run in-home daycares. In this day and age, and in this economy, I suspect many Continue Reading