Tag Archives: schools

Saving for College

7 Jun

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Most parents know that some day their little bundle will grow up, graduate high school and might pursue going to college. With that said very few parents actually make a road map for this financially. Going to college costs a lot of money and its not getting any cheaper. Here are some suggestions to help get you started. If you have a young baby or toddler now is the time to get started. The longer you have to save the better.

  • When your child is little make sure to save all monies given to them for birthdays and holidays (tell friends and family your toddler really doesn’t need another cute outfit) 
  • The younger you start saving means the longer you have to save / grow that college fund
  • Open a UPromise account – don’t buy items just for Upromise sake but a small percentage of purchases will go into a fund for your child this won’t take the place of traditional savings but will help add to it
  • Consider opening a Coverdell Education Savings Account (parents, g.parents anyone can contribute) or an Independent 529 account – not familiar with these learn more here
  • Consider using cash back options on credit cards to deposit “extra money / rewards money” into a savings account
  • Commit to saving a percentage of your monthly income for college savings now just like you would for retirement

Free Resources for Homeschooling Parents

21 Jan

Check out these FREE resources:

Free Worksheets

Rainbow Resource – its a 1,300 page catalog or you can download it online & view products

Quality Worksheets

Donna Young

 

Homeschooling curriculum choices p.1

19 Jan

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I am posting here some resources for homeschooling curriculum as I know this can be a daunting task and probably the hardest decision about homeschooling. Your worried about picking the best curriculum for your child, unlike when they’re enrolled in public or private schools which make the curriculum selection for all children. This is your opportunity to pick and customize a learning program tailored to your child. Obviously, you have to meet all state educational guidelines, but home schooling you can choose to mix and match curriculum or buy all of it from one publisher. Here’s the key to homeschooling you may learn that you love 1 subject from 1 brand and and not its entire curriculum and that’s okay.

Some options to consider:

Time 4 Learning  –  an online web based curriculum which is affordable (starting at $19.95 month for 1 child + $14.95 for each thereafter) and very easy to work with for the parent (lesson plans that are straight forward)

A Beka  – is a full curriculum often used at many private, Christian schools, they have a full home school curriculum parents can order either an entire grade, or just the subject desired (here is a way to integrate the two above if desired)

Alpha Omega Publications encompasses more than 1 brand of homeschooling , both online and hard copy versions

Singapore Mathematics  – Its more than math, it also has other subjects but many home  school parents like this curriculum because it really teaches math well. Children often end up being able to demonstrate advanced math techniques. Don’t worry if you child isn’t starting this program in Kindergarten, and is switching from another, they have a guideline and placement test for your child.

BJU PressThey offer programs from Pre-K to the 12th grade.

RightStart MathOffers homeschooling students a more visual approach to math.

BHI Spell to Write to Read  – Many parents enjoy this wonderful program to help and students often are able to read above grade level

Homeschooling

18 Jan

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Homeschooling is NOT for everyone, it will take discipline, dedication, time management, organization & a commitment from BOTH the child (student) and the parent  (teacher).

It is important to recognize that when adequate studies are not provided it is the child that suffers. I stress this because I saw first hand what happens when people home school and do not actually teach their children. When I was in the 6th grade we had a family that enrolled their children in my school and the mother had previously home-schooled the children, rather than focusing on their education though she assigned a lesson plan then went to the hospital and worked as nurse, she rarely ever checked to see if the children were doing their studies. Her daughter came to my school was 12 years old and placed in the 1st grade, as you see it is the child who suffers when parents don’t take homeschooling serious.

What to look for when homeschooling:

  • A curriculum your comfortable with (religious, rigorous, on-line format, mix and match programs)
  • Is geared toward earning a H.S. diploma
  • Will help the child prepare for standardized tests for college entrance (ACT, SAT)
  • Has some support features built in (like lesson plans, calendars)
  • Consider networking with other home schooling parents in your community to provide your child with peer interaction

Here are some sites to get you more familiar with homeschooling and the many options available to you and your child:

Home Life Academy

Homeschool.com

Let’s Homeschool

K12

Home-School-Association

Private Schools

17 Jan

Private Schools don’t have to be expensive and often offer partial to full scholarships based upon each schools offerings, endowment, and if you start saving a little money each month from when your baby is born, you too can afford a private school education for your child.

Private schools offer many benefits to children and something that you need to take note of when touring or researching are:

  • Student / Teacher ratio
  • Classroom sizes
  • Tuition costs and scholarship information
  • Extra-curricular activities (sports, clubs, honors classes, AP Courses, etc)
  • What are the athletic options as some smaller private schools have limited sports programs
  • College placement & matriculation (for high schools)

Check out Private School Review (here you can search by state, city, & type of school)

Check out GreatSchools (here you can read parents’ reviews on private as well as public schools)

Check out Boarding School Review (many boarding schools provide scholarships to reduce their tuition cost (partial or full)and can offer students many options for children’s education often gearing them towards exceptional college placement)

Charter Schools

17 Jan

Before enrolling you child in a Charter school you need to understand what a charter school is.

According to the National Education Association (NEA)

“Charter schools are publicly funded elementary or secondary schools that have been freed from some of the rules, regulations, and statutes that apply to other public schools, in exchange for some type of accountability for producing certain results, which are set forth in each charter school’s charter.

NEA believes that charter schools and other nontraditional public school options have the potential to facilitate education reforms and develop new and creative teaching methods that can be replicated in traditional public schools for the benefit of all children. Whether charter schools will fulfill this potential depends on how charter schools are designed and implemented, including the oversight and assistance provided by charter authorizers.”

According to the National Education Association (NEA)

“Beginning with two charter schools in Minnesota in 1991, there were almost 3,000 charter schools by 2004, operating in 37 states plus the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and enrolling approximately 750,000 students.”

Search here for a Charter school near you.

Then make an appointment to tour the local school, get an admissions package to review, (if its a high school check its graduation rate), and take not of key important items:

  • Student / Teacher Ratio
  • Class sizes
  • Accredited teachers
  • Academic programs (AP courses, Honors classes, etc)
  • Look into the athletic programs to see what’s available to your child
  • Compare it to your local public school