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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Issue #25, Nov 7, 2001


Nurturing our children in the freedom of Christ
Issue #25, Nov 7, 2001
Sr. Editor & Publisher: Elissa Wahl
Assistant Editor: Teri Brown
Contributing Editor: Angel Dyke


1. Welcome from the Editor
2. Sample End of Year Evaluation Summary
3. Announcements
4. Links
5. Book Review
6. Closing letter from the editor
7. Subscription Information
8. Reprint Information

1. Welcome from the editor

Hi all, hope this newsletter is received in the manner it was
sent ... in love and through God!

My computer ate, yes ATE and digested, never to be seen again, this
months Seedling. As I was sitting here head in hands, trying to
recall what I had written, I remembered my opening letter...about
gratefulness and HOPE when there doesn't seem much to be grateful

Instead of rewriting that part, I will just share the applicable

Job 11:13-18 Zophar Urges Job to Repent

13 "If you would prepare your heart,
And stretch out your hands toward Him;
14 If iniquity were in your hand, and you put it far away,
And would not let wickedness dwell in your tents;
15 Then surely you could lift up your face without spot;
Yes, you could be steadfast, and not fear;
16 Because you would forget your misery,
And remember it as waters that have passed away,
17 And your life would be brighter than noonday.
Though you were dark, you would be like the morning.
18 And you would be secure, because there is hope;
Yes, you would dig around you, and take your rest in safety.

Clearly, even when things look bad, we are to try to draw nearer to
God...and I take this to heart in learning too! I often hear parents
frustration with their homeschool, some get so discouraged as to
wonder if school would be an answer, and if they are even able to
parent!! It need not get this bad! Don't let the bad times draw you
in and change your focus...focus on Him.

Please read on, and we pray you are blessed!

2. Sample End of Year Evaluation Summary

This is an actual evaluation summary of a 6th grade boy, used in a
portfolio review in the state of FL. A copy of this summary is also
found in our book.

Language Arts-
David has enjoyed reading all three of the Harry Potter books,
several times each. He was also interested in the Animorphs series
of books and read several of them in the fall. As a challenge, he
read The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien. His tastes run to the fantasy and
science fiction genre. Grammar is done orally, with corrections made
by either myself, his dad or his grandparents. During our many trips
either in the car or on a jet, we use Mad Libs for reinforcing parts
of speech. We usually challenge him to find interesting and unusual
words for the Mad Libs. David has also used the Comprehensive
Curriculum of Basic Skills - Grade 6 by American Education Publishing
for some other language Arts materials such as homographs, reading
comprehension, spelling, thinking skills, punctuation and grammar.
Another source for reading comprehension was a booklet called High-
Interest Reading by Walter Hazen. David read the non-fiction
stories in this book which brought about discussion and further


David used the Comprehensive Curriculum of Basic Skills to sharpen
his math skills. He also used consumer math and math challenges that
he set up himself. David is very quick with math and has an
intuitive sense of numbers. He likes to challenge himself with math
questions and we like to challenge him ourselves. Most math is done
orally as he can do most in his head. He has rolled coins and added
up the result for one of our car trips. David also likes to figure
out grocery totals and change. Many times fractions have been
learned through cooking with either doubling or halving recipes.
David is fascinated with banking and how banks work. We have spent
many days discussing the banking system and how money is used. Our
family tiled about 500 square feet of our house, and David was shown
how we came to the amount of square feet using geometry. David has a
high interest in magic tricks and has been learning some of the
*tricks* in the book Mathemagic by Raymond Blum.

David has a high interest in science. We used many science
experiment kits including Stinky, Smelly, Hold-Your-Nose Science by
Scholastic, and Icky, Sticky, Foamy, Slimy, Ooey, Gooey Chemistry
also from Scholastic. We also used Physical Science by Frank White
trying several experiments including dancing macaroni, bouncing eggs
and dissolving a nail. Many of our trips have also added to the
science including a trip to the Florida Aquarium in Tampa, the
National Aquarium in Baltimore, A guided nature walk on the shores of
the bay on Cape Cod by the Cape Cod Museum of Natural History, a Self-
guided tour of the Massachusetts Audubon Society Wellfleet Bay
Wildlife Sanctuary, A day-long visit to Drumhaller and the Royal
Tyrrell Museum in Alberta, Canada a world-class dinosaur museum and
our passes to Sea World. While in Calgary, Alberta we drove to Banff
where we saw coyote and elk on the side of the road. We also drove
to Lake Louise where we were able to see the three glaciers on the
mountain. The drive to Drumhaller took us to several canyons on the
seemingly flat farmland. We were also able to see several more
coyotes on the drive to Edmonton and we saw magpies for the first
time. David volunteers at the Orlando Science Center.

David has continued his interest in Ancient Egypt and we have visited
the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Ontario with an emphasis on the
Egyptian collection. This collection included actual mummies. We
also added to the Egyptian study with a tour of the Egyptian
collection at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. This
collection included a restored Temple of Dendur which had graffiti
from the 19th century explorers and adventurers who had discovered
it. Another interest of study was ancient man and we used the book,
Step Into… The Stone Age by Charlotte Hurdman. This book had many
hands-on activities including making a hunting spear and clay pots.
We did a brief study of ancient Greece which will continue on for the
next school year. Another area of study was about the Vikings where
we read the book Step Into… The Viking World by Philip Steele. This
was also enriched by the TV program on NOVA called The Vikings. We
had visited one area the Vikings had landed, Newfoundland, and the
kids were very interested in this aspect. Our history education was
enriched with visits to the Royal Tyrrell Museum in Alberta, Canada;
the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City; and Royal Ontario
Museum in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. A more modern *history* was
discovered when we saw the play "The Diary of Anne Frank". This led
to many discussions of Hitler and WWII. The evening after viewing
the play my parents had a very good friend over who was Jewish and
from Germany and lost his whole family to the concentration camps.
This led to some interesting and very sad discussion.

Our Study of geography stems from our travel. We use the Rand
McNally Road Atlas of the US and Canada, and the Rand McNally Premier
World Atlas. Other sources of geography comes from The National
Geographic magazine and maps. We usually buy a map of every area we
plan on visiting and consult that map often. Both of the kids are
good map readers and have been our navigators on many trips. We have
added to our history study with a study of the geography of the
area. Our trips have included a driving trip to New Jersey then on
to New Hampshire and the Lake Winnipesaukee area and on again to Cape
Cod Massachusetts. Our next trip was a flight to Toronto, Ontario
and several visits to the city and suburbs. In December we flew to
Calgary, Alberta and drove to Banff, Lake Louise, Drumhaller, and
Edmonton to the world's largest enclosed mall. In May we visited New
Jersey and New York with a visit to New York City using maps of the
city and the bus system. The kids also helped us find our way in
upstate New York during a severe thunderstorm.

Computer Science -
David has a very high interest in computers. We have a peer to peer
network in our house and David has been involved in the
building/rebuilding of the computers in our house. He
installs/uninstalls software, uses Windows 98, shares files with the
peer to peer network, and troubleshoots his own computer. He is
currently in the middle of a Visual Basic programming class being
taught at home through the South-Western company.

David swims in our pool, rollerblades, boogie boards at the beach and
has done some light hiking both in Florida and in the snow in Banff.
While in Calgary he took an hour and a half lesson on snowboarding
and went snowboarding again the next day.

Miscellaneous Activities/Classes-
David was involved in training our puppy. We all took the puppy
training class through Friends Fur Life.

David attended the beginning Sign Language class through Homeschool
Network and used the book, Signing Illustrated, the Complete Learning
Guide by Mickey Flodin. David and his sister use sign often with
each other, mostly finger spelling.

David is the Pokemon *answer man* for his friends and has also helped
his friends with computer or computer-game related problems.

David has also begun volunteering for the Orlando Science Center on
Wednesdays from 9am to 4pm.

We have visited the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, Blue
Springs State Park to see manatees, Wekiwa Springs State Park and
Hontoon Island State Park.

3. Announcements

Elissa and I have always had a lot in common. We love being
Christians, we love unschooling, and we love to help other parents
and children find the joy that comes from Spirit-led, delight
directed learning. This is one of the reasons we wrote the book and
we are in humble awe of the emails we receive from parents concerning
how much the book has helped them. Praise God!

But we think we can do more to help you. God has led us to turn our
book into a full blown, multi layered ministry, designed to help the
Christian unschooler, those who are relaxing their homeschool into
unschooling and those who have just escaped from the public school
system. Our plans include: a devotional/bible study for the Christian
Unschooler, a consultation service via email and phone, scheduled
chats and seminars.

We will be speaking on Christian Unschooling at the Link homeschool
conference, held in CA June 2001. We are available for other speaking

Watch the website for details as they unfold!!!

4. Links
Some basic, good, homeschool links!
Has great articles, support and encouragement.

National Home Education Network
Grassroots organization involved in support and information
networking across the nation.

Cafi Cohen's site..great for homeschooling high schoolers!!

A to Z Home's Cool

Worldbook site
..typical course of grade/subject

Homeschooling Special Needs

5. Book Review
by Elissa Wahl

The Complete Tightwad Gazette
by Amy Dacyczyn

This hefty book is three-in-one. The Tightwad Gazette was a
newsletter, turned book, turned books! This is a compilation of the
best of the newsletters and all three books, in one.

I am still not completely finished with this behemoth book...while I
usually fly through books, this one commands extra time. It is full
of hints and tried and true money savers. More importantly, it is
FULL of extensive research that is aimed at saving time and money.

The author writes as if she is speaking directly to me, very honest
and open and clear. We learn about her family, her business, things
they have tried that have worked, and flubbs that haven't!

I, like many, am always searching for ways to cut our daily living
expenses, in order to one day go on that trip to the Grand Canyon, or
so we can get a van with air conditioning....this book explores some
ways I have thought of, but delves so fully into the savings
LIFESTYLE that I am left with many feelings.

I am above all hopeful, that I too, might get to the level this
author has....for now, I garage sale, look for the best deals at the
grocery store, storehop and more, but never, on my most imaginative
day, would I EVER have thought to rinse out the leftovers of the jam
jar to flavor popsicles!

I am doing now, with this book, what I do often. I absorb, file it
away, maybe don't put it into practice right away, but draw from it
when "my way" doesn't seem to fit anymore. It's like much of, listen, and take from it what you can, when you can!

All in all, I feel this book was a GREAT deal , great reading
material, and very very helpful to the wannabe tightwad!!


6. Closing Letter

ATTENTION!! WE NEED SUBMISSIONS!!! You need not be a writer! Share
with us your experiences: a fun trip, a book review, a new support
group, a great link, something profound your children said/did, any

I would LOVE essays from moms or teens about the process they
followed to get into college, essays addressing DOUBT, addressing
record keeping..anything! It is almost a sure bet that if it is on
your mind/heart, one of us has felt it too.

Until next time,
Be blessed you all!

Elissa Wahl
Teri Brown
Angel Dyke

7. Subscription Information

Subscribe at : or email

Unsubscribe at: or email

8. Reprint Information

Individual authors herein retain their own copyrights. You may
freely copy this entire newsletter or material from this newsletter
in other nonprofit publications (unless otherwise marked in the
article), but you MUST include the author's name and this entire

"Reprinted with permission of Elissa Wahl from Seedling, a
Christian Unschooling E-Zine. For a free subscription, send
any e-mail message to or visit

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