Finishing Strong #119: Math, Orienteering, & Electives

Welcome to Finishing Strong ~ a weekly link-up dedicated to families homeschooling middle & high school kids. Each Wednesday, moms just like you share their best tips, encouragement, advice, and more for teaching older kids at home.

Finishing Strong is a place for families who are homeschooling middle & high school kids to meet up in order to share tips, encouragement, advice, and more. We know it can be stressful homeschooling teens, which is why we’ve built this community.

It is brought to you each Wednesday by the ladies at Blog She Wrote, Education PossibleStarts at Eight, and myself.

Finishing-Strong-500x500

Featured this week is a post I wrote a few years ago, Orienteering for Kids, that highlights one of our favorite hobbies. It is a popular sport in Scandinavia that involves navigational skills – using a compass and topographical maps. We are looking forward to getting more involved in the sport this coming year as our Boy Scout Troop and Venturing Crew looks to participate in a few competitions. If you are looking for ideas to introduce your children or Scouts group to this fun activity, I have created a free download as well as a more in-depth guide to help you get started.

Free Orienteering Lessons

We hope you’ll take some time to check out the amazing posts that have been shared with us. We are so thankful to all of our readers and contributors who help make Finishing Strong a key resource for everyone homeschooling through the middle & high school years.


“altWe love Life of Fred ourselves. It is no surprise that Heather’s post, Learning High School Math with Life of Fred was the most clicked upon post shared this past week. Her post shares tips for success with Life of Fred.

“altThe flexibility to customize our children’s education is one of the things I love best about homeschooling. In the high school years, this means their electives. You’ll love Betsy’s compilation of 100 Ideas for High School Electives.

“altEach day, I am reminded why we chose to homeschool. Anne outlines 10 Reasons Why You Will Love Homeschooling Your Teen and as you’ll see, it’s not that hard to homeschool high school.

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As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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Finishing Strong #118: Math, Science & Project Based Learning

Finishing Strong is the place for families who are homeschooling middle & high school kids to meet up in order to share tips, encouragement, advice, and more. We know it can be stressful homeschooling teens, which is why we’ve built this community.

Finishing Strong is hosted each Wednesday here at EvaVarga along with my friends – Heather from Blog She Wrote, Megan and Susan from Education Possible, and Heidi from Starts at Eight.

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Featured this week is German chemist Robert Wilhelm Eberhard von Bunsen who was born on March 31st. He is best know for engineering a burner with a hot, sootless, non-luminous flame by mixing the gas with air in a controlled fashion before combustion. Bunsen burners are now used in laboratories all around the world.

bunsen burner

Find more STEAM biographies with accompanying hands-on activities in my series, Science Milestones.

We hope you’ll take some time to check out the amazing posts that have been shared with us. We are so thankful to all of our readers and contributors who help make Finishing Strong a key resource for everyone homeschooling through the middle & high school years.


High School MathThe most clicked on post shared last week was Heidi’s How I Teach Homeschool Math at Starts at Eight.

“altEarning Credits with a Project Based High School, shared by Heather from Blog She Wrote was one of my favorite this past week. “Often as our children get older, we think their time is better spent doing more traditional academic work. Fight the urge to regard project time as less important!

You might also like Independent Study Projects: Learning Science While Exploring Interests

Robotics in Your HomeschoolMy son has dabbled a little with robotics through his experience with FIRST Lego League earlier this year. It is a fascinating subject area that can be integrated into many content areas. I’ve thereby selected Marci’s post, Robotics in Your Homeschool as another favorite shared this past week.

Writing & RhetoricI would also like to highlight Writing & Rhetoric Curriculum Review posted at Freely Learned. I was previously unfamiliar with this curriculum and am intrigued to learn more.


As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

Please Share!

Add our button to your post.

Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years


Finishing Strong #117: Hobbies, Student Passions, & Unschooling

Welcome back to Finishing Strong!

Finishing Strong is a place for families who are homeschooling middle & high school kids to meet up in order to share tips, encouragement, advice, and more. We know it can be stressful homeschooling teens, which is why we’ve built this community.

It is brought to you each Wednesday by the ladies at Blog She Wrote, Education PossibleStarts at Eight, and myself.

Finishing-Strong-500x500

In honor of International Women’s Day, featured this week is a post celebrating the work of Anna Botsford Comstock, the esteemed author of the Handbook of Nature Study. Her words are as valuable and relevant today as they were back at the turn of the 20th century when her book was first published, Nature Study with Anna Botsford Comstock.

naturestudy

We hope you’ll take some time to check out the amazing posts that have been shared with us. We are so thankful to all of our readers and contributors who help make Finishing Strong a key resource for everyone homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

Middle School Hobbies20 Middle School Hobbies For Education by Our Unschooling Journey was our most read post shared last week.I really enjoyed this because it helped me to realize all we really do experience in homeschool. While the kids may not pursue each with fervor, her post is a little reminder of all that we have accomplished.

Opportunities for Homeschooled Teen

Relatedly, I also enjoyed reading Heather’s post, Creating Opportunities for Your Homeschool Teen as it provided encouragement for me to allow my kids to pursue their areas of interest in more depth. “High school is all about how to help your teens … [have] authentic experiences which prepare them for what lies ahead.”

It is so easy to fall victim to the comparison game. Even with over ten years of homeschool experience behind me, I still catch myself thinking we aren’t doing enough, we aren’t covering enough material. These two posts help me to realize that life experiences and child-led interests really can (and do) prepare students for their future.

Homeschool Teen Behind

On a similar note, I also enjoyed Ann’s perspective in her post, When You Fear That Your Homeschooled Teen is Behind. “College is NOT for everyone, and neither you nor your child are a failure if you decide on another path.”


As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

Please Share!

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years


Finishing Strong #116

Welcome to Finishing Strong ~ a weekly link-up dedicated to families homeschooling middle & high school kids. Each Wednesday, moms just like you share their best tips, encouragement, advice, and more for teaching older kids at home.

I am delighted that families homeschooling middle and high school age students are coming together and finding inspiration in one another. That’s has been the goal of Finishing Strong since its inception. Thank you!!

Finishing Strong is hosted by me here at EvaVarga along with my friends – Heather from Blog She Wrote, Megan and Susan from Education Possible, and Heidi from Starts at Eight.

Finishing-Strong-500x500I know you will find the posts that have been shared with us inspiring! Grab a cup of tea, kick back, and take some time to check out the wonderful posts shared below. What are your favorites?


Finishing Strong #116The most clicked on post shared last week was The Amazing College Alternative You’ll Want to Know About from Ann who blogs at Annie & Everything. Through more about the Praxis apprenticeship program whereby high school graduates go through three months of bootcamp and then six months of on-the-job experience at a high-growth startup company.

I love reading and historical fiction is my favorite genre. I thereby selected How to Teach History Using Fiction shared by Pat who blogs at Pat & Candy. Her post details a delightful multicultural children’s book titled,The Last Cherry Blossom.

Heidi’s post, Virtual Frog Dissection Resources, is another favorite of mine. Science is my favorite subject and I’m always looking for great resources and ideas for integrating science into our homeschool.

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As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

Please Share!

Add our button to your post.

Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years


Lessons Learned Through Sports and Competition

My kiddos have been part of a swim team since 2011. When we first joined, our only objective was a physical activity for good health and fitness. Swimming has since become a major part of our lives.

Personally, I did not have a preference for what sport they chose. Over the years, we’ve tried BMX, dance, skiing, and Taekwondo. We also occasionally take part in trail runs. Yet swimming is the sport that we’ve stuck with the longest.

I haven’t written extensively about our swim team experiences, but here’s a fun peak at her first swim meet.

High School Swim

This past winter, my daughter has been swimming on the high school swim team in addition to our year-round swim club. There is an increased level of intensity – she is required to attend 5 or more practices each week to compete in the swim meets. In club, though we aimed for 3-4 practices a week, there was no penalty if we missed or were unable to attend.

As such, she has had less free time and has thereby had to learn how to better manage her time. Yet, high school swimming has been a great experience for many reasons. My daughter says,

I like high school swim because it feels more like a family. We cheer for each other through the whole meet and we have lots of fun socials like Kozy Pie Night.

lessons learned through sports

Though hubby and I both grew up here and also began our professional careers here after college, we have only recently moved back. Her participation in high school swim has helped us to feel more connected to the community.

Lessons Learned Through Sports

Whether it is club sports or a high school team, taking part in sports has been very beneficial and we’ve recently reflected on what we’ve learned over the years.

Some days, at the end of our lessons and errands, my kids will say they are “too tired” to go to swim team but they go anyway.

There are those moments when they have been so tired they want to quit but don’t.

How to Avoid Child Burnout @EvaVarga.net

Young athletes are capable of getting burned out, too. Here’s a post exploring How to Avoid Child Burnout

They learn to be disciplined, focused and dedicated.

They learn to take care of their body. To get enough rest and to fuel their bodies with the right foods.

They learn to take care of their equipment.

They learn to manage their time and not procrastinate in completing their coursework and household chores.

They learn to work with others and to be good team mates, gracious in defeat and humble in success.

They learn to deal with disappointment when they don’t get that placing or time they’d hoped for, but still they go back week after week giving it their best shot.

They learn to make and accomplish goals. We meet with their coach periodically each season to discuss their goals and what areas they need to focus on.

They learn to respect, not only themselves, but other athletes, officials and coaches.

They learn that it takes hours and hours, years and years of hard work and practice to create a champion and that success does not happen overnight.

Sports Scholarship?

Did you know only 2% of high school athletes receive college scholarships? Chasing a Sports Scholarship may not be your best route to college.

They learn to be proud of small achievements and to work towards long term goals.

They develop life-long friendships and create lifelong memories.

Being active gets their heart pumping and their blood circulating which promotes good health and life-long habits.

They develop attributes that will serve them well throughout their lives and give them the opportunity to bless the lives of others.

Finishing Strong #115: Movies that Inspire & Teach

I am confidant that we could all agree that we love movies. Your choice for movie night may be quite different from my own, but undoubtedly, we all enjoy kicking back with a bowl of popcorn or other treat and enjoying a story unfold in front of our eyes.

Movies That Teach

Movies not only entertain, they also inspire and teach. It is thereby no wonder that they are often used in the classroom as enrichment activities and to help reinforce concepts in all subject areas.

Most people think of science or history documentaries when they think of educational films. In our homeschool, we use a variety of film genres to teach foreign language.

foreign language moviesThere are online resources for foreign films, but finding them is not always easy. A few years ago, I wrote a post detailing how to use Movies for Foreign Language Instruction. You might also enjoy my post, Watching Movies Dubbed in Mandarin posted at Better Chinese.

Movies and educational films is my Finishing Strong focus this week. Continuing reading to discover more about how you can engage your teens with movies.


Finishing Strong

Welcome to Finishing Strong ~ a weekly link-up dedicated to families homeschooling middle & high school kids. Each Wednesday, moms just like you share their best tips, encouragement, advice, and more for teaching older kids at home.Finishing-Strong-500x500

Finishing Strong is hosted by me here at EvaVarga along with my friends – Heather from Blog She Wrote, Megan and Susan from Education Possible, and Heidi from Starts at Eight.

I know you will find the posts that have been shared with us inspiring! Grab a cup of tea, kick back, and take some time to check out the wonderful posts shared below. What are your favorites?

finishingstrong115I love historical fiction and so I thus I am delighted that 30 History Movies for Middle School by Mother of 3 was the most clicked on post this past week. Many of the titles our amongst our family’s all-time favorites. At first glance you might guess her favorite actor is Tom Hanks. 😉

Continuing with that theme, I also enjoyed Book Shark’s post, 10 Fascinating Netflix Films Your Teen Will Love. As part of our science curriculum this year, my two are working on earning the NOVA Awards. One of the requirements is to read and/or watch three hours of math-related shows or documentaries. In this post, I discovered two math programs I know my kids will really enjoy.

The next post I would like to highlight – though not directly related to movies – is Heather’s Choosing High School Curriculum. There are so many options out there it can feel overwhelming. Her post will help you to address your student’s needs and determine the materials for their courses of study.


As always, thank you for helping us to make Finishing Strong a key resource for families who are homeschooling through the middle & high school years.

What are you going to share with us this week?

Guidelines:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, individual Pinterest pins, Facebook, Twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 4 sites. If you were featured, we would love for you to use the “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

Please Share!

Add our button to your post.

Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

Were You Featured?

Grab an “I was featured” button!

Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

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