General Homeschooling

  • Five Things Every Waldorf Homeschooler Should Stop and Consider…

    Posted by Donna Simmons

    By Donna Simmons I think there must be times in every homeschooler’s life when she (or he) wishes that she could just put the children on the couch and freeze them there for a year or two while she catches…

  • Keep Calm and Homeschool On

    Posted by Christopherus

    by Barbara Benson Guidelines for homeschooling multiple ages of children   One of the most frequently asked consulting questions I receive is how to homeschool multiple ages of children and keep one’s sanity! It is a challenge and I remember…

  • Managing Main Lessons with Multiples: 5th and 7th grade combined unit on China

    Posted by Christopherus

    By Barbara Benson There are times in the main lessons scheduled throughout the grades when combining a main lesson for multiple ages is actually ideal. One of these times is the unit study on Ancient China, highlighted in the Fifth…

  • A Freshman to Senior Timeline for High School Homeschoolers interested in College

    Posted by Christopherus

    by Barbara Benson I realize that there are few of you homeschoolers that are currently teaching high school, but since it is very much on my mind these days with my youngest daughter, I thought I would share a brief…

  • The Importance of Form Drawing

    Posted by Christopherus

    This blog will not address how to do form drawing or its esoteric benefits to the twelve senses. Donna’s book, Form Drawing for Beginners as well as supplemental books like Form Drawing Grades One through Four by Stine and Schuberth…

  • Rhythms of Learning

    Posted by Christopherus

    In Waldorf inspired homeschooling we talk about establishing a good daily weekly, monthly and seasonal rhythm. What do we really mean when we say rhythm? In Donna’s Waldorf Curriculum Overview, Chapter 7, she discusses the daily rhythm of ” active…

  • Working Moms and Homeschooling

    Posted by Christopherus

      In truth, every mom is a working mom. The job of taking care of a family is a large one. For those of us who add on paid employment, either outside the home or at home, the task of…

  • Transitioning from School to Homeschooling

    Posted by Christopherus

    Taking your child out of public school or a private school in order to homeschool is a major life decision for the family. In my experience as a consultant, this decision can often occur in early elementary, middle school, or…

  • TAKING STOCK- A Midwinter Evaluation of Your Homeschooling

    Posted by Christopherus

    January or early February is a good time of year for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere to take stock of where we are with our homeschooling. Here are a few suggestions to keep your homeschooling rhythm on track:…

  • Managing Multiple Main Lessons

    Posted by Christopherus

    It takes organization, dedication and some flexibility to homeschool multiple children. The simple fact is that you are not going to be able to follow each syllabus thoroughly with each child. As a parent of five children who were all…

  • Highlights and Challenges of Homeschooling in Sixth Grade

    Posted by Christopherus

    If you have been working with the Christopherus curriculum for a number of years prior to sixth grade, it can be disconcerting to go from a comprehensive yearly syllabus to a free rough download for the middle school years, reinforced…

  • Role of Non-Teaching Spouse

    Posted by Christopherus

      Many couples that do Waldorf inspired homeschooling share similar values on education and adopting a Waldorf inspired rhythm to homeschooling. There are times, however, when one person "discovers" Waldorf and is determined to augment it into the family lifestyle,…

  • Circle Time in a Homeschooling Setting

    Posted by Christopherus

    Although it can be challenging to do circle time in a home school setting, particularly with an only child, I believe that circle can be a great benefit to your early elementary homeschooling rhythm of the day. Circle time in…

  • Summer Learning

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, July 2004 About a week after I wrote the last newsletter, I realized that what I had written was potentially open for misinterpretation. I had written that although we do not formally “do school” during…

  • Christopherus Homeschool Planner

    Posted by Christopherus

    For years homeschooling parents using our Christopherus Syllabi have been asking for a planner and now we have one for you. With the help of Barbara Benson, Christopherus’ Consultant, and Christopherus’ Homeschool Journey readers (Thank You!!!) , Amy McGehee-Lee, homeschooling mom…

  • Tea with Donna Question and Answers

    Posted by Christopherus

    The Transition from Kindergarten to the Grades This is a really good question for homeschoolers to put some thought into. Although part of the point of the kindergarten years is to create healthy forms which can then be the basis…

  • Beginning a Sucessful Homeschooling Year

    Posted by Christopherus

    The first month of homeschooling, especially for new homeschoolers, can be challenging. Sometimes the carefully laid out plans of summer seem to go awry in the face of actually teaching the main lesson material to your children. Here are a…

  • When is a Consultant Helpful?

    Posted by Christopherus

    Spring has moved forward rapidly in all her blossoming glory. Aside from my duties as a consultant, homeschooling mother and avid gardener, this time of year also reminds me to take stock of my current homeschooling year and begin to envision…

  • September Boom and Bust

    Posted by Christopherus

    September Boom and Bust If you’re like most homeschoolers, you started your new homeschooling year well organized, with clear goals and with great enthusiasm. You had all your lessons well planned, with interesting and engaging projects to do to keep the work…

  • Keynotes for Each Grade

    Posted by Christopherus

    One thing that I have noticed over the years of working with parents interested in Waldorf education is that often people forget to look much beyond the grade/age that their children are currently at. This causes much confusion and sometimes…

  • Devising a Schedule that Works

    Posted by Christopherus

    One of the things that I take great pains to emphasize throughout our Christopherus publications is advise on how to teach and how to organize one’s lessons. Drawing from my background as a Waldorf teacher and homeschooling mother, I try…

  • Musings on School Readiness and Older Children

    Posted by Christopherus

    It’s that time of year again…parents agonizing about whether their six year old should start first grade or stay in kindergarten….Such a big decision. Steiner’s entire picture of the development of the human being rests on an understanding of the seven…

  • Autumn Field Trips

    Posted by Christopherus

    This year my daughters are in 7th and 4th grade and we are in the middle of Indiana geography/history and the Renaissance. To honor these two main lessons in a living way we decided to do two field trips. The…

  • The Benson Children’s Home Business

    Posted by Christopherus

    A Labor of Love It’s that time of year again. September means the fall, the start of homeschooling and for our family, the start of our seasonal business known as Happy Hearts, run by my two daughters (ages 12 and 10)…

  • Preparing for a New Academic Year

    Posted by Christopherus

    It can feel like an overwhelming task to consider planning a new academic year of homeschooling for one child let along multiple age children. When Donna asked me to do a guest blog on this topic I asked her to…

  • UN Treaty threatens Homeschooling Freedoms

    Posted by Christopherus

    Here’s a sobering article written by the folks at the HSLDA (Homeschool Legal Defense Association) which should make every single homeschooler (and person who values freedom) sit up and take notice. It is about how the United Nations Convention on…

  • Can Anyone Help?

    Posted by Christopherus

    I do not offer legal advice as part of my Christopherus work. However, I was very moved by the following e-mail which was sent to me and wondered if anyone had any experience to share with this woman. I suggested…

  • Radio Interview

    Posted by Christopherus

    A couple of weeks ago I was interviewed for a radio program, Business Matters, as part of a segment they were doing on the state of education in America. I was the guest speaker on homeschooling. Waldorf didn’t come into…

  • From Chaos to Form

    Posted by Christopherus

    This is a rather short reworked post from my Waldorf at Home discussion forum. An exhausted forum member wrote in, asking for help with transitioning her 7 year old daughter from total unschooling to a more Waldorf – ie formed…

  • Good Test, Bad Test

    Posted by Christopherus

    I like tests. I really do. I enjoyed them as a child in the Waldorf school I attended, I enjoyed giving them to my homeschooled sons and I enjoy giving them to my students. I enjoy creating tests and I…

  • Serious Threat to Homeschooling in CA

    Posted by Christopherus

    Just the other day a homeschooler in California alerted me to the fact that homeschooling is under attack in CA. She also shared her concerns over the possibility of pre school education being mandatory for all children of 4 years…

  • The “S” Question

    Posted by Christopherus

    (This is from a thread from my discussion forum on that great homeschooling nemesis – the Question of Socialization! No matter what form of homeschooling one works with, the spectre of a poorly socialized child will haunt even the most confident…

  • Mood and Main Lesson Material

    Posted by Christopherus

    Each year when the administrator at the Waldorf-ish high school where I teach part time asks me “when would work for you to teach your main lessons?” I like to sit a bit and think about what it is that…

  • Two valuable resources

    Posted by Christopherus

    Many book orders that we send out include a pamphlet about the Rudolf Steiner Library. This is the lending library (based in Harlemville, NY) of the Anthroposophical Society in America and is a wonderful resource for home educators. The entire…

  • Educating for Excellence

    Posted by Christopherus

    Sometimes I get the feeling that people forget to look beyond the “fluffy pink” beginnings of Waldorf and do not know much of where the education they are working with is aiming. Sometimes the Waldorf bubble encapsulates the parent as…

  • Hiring a Waldorf teacher

    Posted by Christopherus

    (This is a post from my old yahoo group which I have reworked. The original question had to do with suggestions for hiring a Waldorf teacher to work with a mixed age Waldorf co-op). To be perfectly honest, this is…

  • Team Sports – what age?

    Posted by Christopherus

    It can be challenging sometimes to decide when it is appropriate to allow children to engage in organized sport – does one say yes when the child shows interest or are there some guiding principles to keep in mind? For those…

  • Christopherus Full Gr 1 – 8 Curriculum

    Posted by Christopherus

    Announcement! Arising from the spirit of flexibility and practicality which characterizes Christopherus Homeschool Resources, our new full curriculum will be designed to suit both the homeschooler who wants a complete curriculum as well as those who wish to purchase pieces separately. Our…

  • Planning For Next Year

    Posted by Christopherus

    So…. I thought I’d give you all a few tips on planning for the next year (and all you Southern Hemisphere readers you’ll just have to come back to this blog entry later in the year!). One of my main…

  • Report from Informed Family Life Conference Boulder CO

    Posted by Christopherus

    I just got back from Rahima Baldwin’s “Whole Family, Whole Parent” conference sponsored by her organization, Informed Family Life. What a great weekend it was! I had the privilege of being one of four keynote speakers. The three people preceding…

  • Defending Oak Meadow

    Posted by Christopherus

    (here is a post from my yahoo group, Waldorf At Home which I wrote about Oak Meadow)   I think there is much to recommend OM and I also have found useful information in reading some of their materials -…

  • The Well Trained Mind and Waldorf

    Posted by Christopherus

    (here is another old post of mine from my yahoo group, Waldorf at Home. This one comes from a thread about Waldorf and classical education. I would like to call it “so-called classical education” – see my quote at the…

  • Last Year At Home

    Posted by Christopherus

    I can’t believe school only started two weeks ago! I feel like it’s all I think, breath and do – and that it is Life. How could it only be two weeks old?! Of course, by school, I not only mean…

  • Friendly Teens

    Posted by Christopherus

    It always amazes me – and saddens me – when I hear about or read about parents who have no idea who their teens are, who cannot communicate with them or who are at a loss as to how to…

  • End of Year Wrap Up

    Posted by Christopherus

    It is now mid May. My 6th grader and I are drawing his year’s schooling to an end – next week is our last formal “school week”. I thought I would share a few thoughts on how we have, in…

  • Not School at Home

    Posted by Christopherus

    I wrote the following article for Lucie Smoker’s  eclectic and Waldorf-inspired homeschooling website, Wonder Homeschool, which unfortunately no longer exists. Many people are completely bowled over when they first encounter Waldorf education. The truly holistic and spiritual acknowledgement of the…

  • Working Together

    Posted by Christopherus

    My son Gabriel and I have been busy these past few weeks creating a new unit study publication for sale – this one is on the Middle Ages and follows on from the Roman History unit study we already have….

  • Homeschool Writing Group

    Posted by Christopherus

    I have started a little weekly gathering of homeschooled children at my home. We meet every Tuesday morning – there are four children, including my younger son and they range in age from 11 to 13. The three who are not…

  • The Waldorf View on Teaching

    Posted by Christopherus

    (this is a response I gave to a question on my yahoo group Waldorf_At_Home)   I think a question could be asked "how does the child know to ask what she wants? How does she know what she wants?" This…

  • Six Week Report

    Posted by Christopherus

    Well, Gabriel’s been home for six weeks now – it’s been going very well and he’s pleased and feeling on top of things. Our schedule has been a bit hectic – me working part time at the high school plus…

  • But Is It Waldorf?

    Posted by Christopherus

    Here’s my one week progress report on the journey back home by my younger son, Gabriel. A couple of entries ago (eeecchh – sounds like items on a menu) – er, a couple of blogs ago? – no that’s worse…

  • To School and Back Home Again

    Posted by Christopherus

    Last spring my family left our little farm and moved 4 hours south (still in Wisconsin) to a wonderful community which, among other things, boasts both a Waldorf school and a Waldorf flavored high school. There are a variety of…

  • Raising Compassionate and Socially Aware Children

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, November 2004 The following are excerpts from the keynote talks I gave in Fair Oaks, CA and Ann Arbor, MI at Waldorf in the Home conferences. The entire talk would be…

  • How To Do It!

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, October 2004 (and much has changed in our family since then!) My original topic for this month’s newsletter was something quite different than what you are about to read – I…

  • Summer Learning

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, July 2004 About a week after I wrote the last newsletter, I realized that what I had written was potentially open for misinterpretation. I had written that although we do not…

  • The Joy of Learning

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, June 2004 Well, summer has come to Northwestern Wisconsin, USA – after nearly 6 months of frozen ground, it is such a pleasure to work in the garden again. Lettuce, potatoes,…

  • The Value of Silence

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, January 2004 In my mind, I visualize Advent time to be like a huge balloon, building, building, building, getting bigger and then POP! Christmas Day, which in my family is also…

  • Cultivating Perseverance

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article was first published in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, November 2003 As I struggle to write this newsletter, I am half listening to my husband and sons having their recorder lesson. My sons would rather not play recorder and…

  • Schedules

    Posted by Christopherus

    This article first appeared in the Homeschool Journey newsletter, June 2005 By the time this newsletter gets to you all, it’ll be late June … and many of you will be starting to collect your thoughts about next year. Many…

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