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The Way Home - The Link's eNewsletter


Dear Readers:

In this issue, we bring you two informative and fun articles. First, Sharon Watson, creative writing guru-ette offers “Three Unorthodox Writing Tips” to take the fear out of your writing teaching endeavors. Experienced homeschooler, gamester and parent guide, Carolyn Forte presents “Game Plan for Learning”. As summer goes into the home stretch, homeschooling parents turn their attention to products and resources. We hope that you will strongly consider our advertisers – in our print magazines, on our 3 websites and here, in our E-news. They offer excellent resources for you and make our work possible. As always, thank you for reading.

Michael Leppert

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Real Authentic Women

DR. LOYD’S FRACTION KIT
Learning various fraction operations can be very difficult. In essence, it’s not the concept of the fraction that is difficult — it is the various operations (addition, multiplication, subtraction, simplifying, etc.) that make fractions difficult. Typically, children are taught to memorize innumerable rules that do not connect with anything else, about the operations. This generally leads to a blind following of the rules without any understanding of how or why they apply

Dr. Loyd’s Fraction Kit is an easy-to-use, hands-on mathematics manipulative designed to unravel the mystery of fraction operations and explain how they really work. Inventor, Dr. Loyd is the author of numerous academic articles and books and a commercial mathematics readiness test. With over 37 years of experience teaching instructors, school teachers and students, he is a highly-qualified and respected national and international workshop presenter and has developed an engaging and successful method of fraction instruction.


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Dr. Loyd's Fraction Kit

Penn Foster

Three Unorthodox Writing Tips
By Sharon Watson

“Write an essay,” you tell your children. “Begin by writing an amazing first sentence and a spot-on thesis statement to control the direction of your whole essay before writing at least three unified and complete paragraphs to support that wonderful thesis statement. Finish with an insightful conclusion that makes readers think.”

What a perfectly annoying way to ruin a nice sheet of clean paper. Maybe it’s more than annoying for a middle-school or high-school student in your family. Maybe it’s scary or depressing or nearly impossible. What can you do?

Try something unorthodox. You may not have learned these tips in school, but they work. I used some of them in my own homeschooling, and I’ve used all of them in the writing classes I teach to homeschool teens. Instead of asking your children to stare down a sheet of paper, ask them to begin in the middle. Have them brainstorm wildly and then choose three or four of those ideas to write down on sticky notes, one idea to each sticky note. This makes it super easy to arrange and rearrange their points until they feel as if the points are in a logical order. Then, and only then, can your children start writing the body of their essay. This is all about mastering essay sections incrementally, so no introduction or conclusion is needed—they’re still practicing the body.


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Math Without Borders

Professor Toto

Nelson Academy of Agriculture

Visual, Concrete Learners and Auditory, Abstract Skills — Bridging that Gap with Itchy’s Alphabet!

By Brenda Larson

Learning styles advocates indicate that upwards of 80% of our population are visual learners. It has been my experience that young children, especially, rely heavily on their visual skills for learning. These same young children are also very concrete, hands-on learners.

However, some of the first academic skills children are faced with learning are their letter sounds and formations — skills that are both auditory and abstract. Is it any wonder our visual, concrete learners struggle so much with these essential foundation skills? Current statistics show that over 30% of children at the Kindergarten level will most likely struggle to learn their letter sounds and may, as a result, face challenges with reading throughout their lives. How can we help?

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Itchy's Alphabet

Test Of Faith

Game Plan for Learning
By Carolyn Forte

As a new convert to homeschooling, with very headstrong 3- and 5-year-old daughters, I learned the value of using games to teach everything from health and safety to times tables. My children often resisted my attempts to teach them using formal lessons, but I could always get them eagerly involved in a game. As time passed, games became vital to combat the frustration my girls encountered in learning to read. Drills and workbooks quickly become tedious for children who are having difficulty. Games, however, when used properly, are fun and even exciting.

Games are not just for the late bloomers. Everyone, adults included, can learn a lot from games. There are commercial games available for every subject area, but you don't have to spend your entire homeschool budget to use games in learning. Children enjoy making up games and even adults can learn to create games with a little help from the professionals. There are books of game ideas and even game-creation kits. You can make your own games to learn specific facts or skills. I once made a simple board game to help my daughters learn Bible verses for Bible Quizzing. We constantly made up games in the car: "Who can find the most varieties of trees, flowers, etc.," "Name birds (mammals, gems, etc.) in turn until one person can't come up with another one," "What would you do if you were lost in the forest ( or supermarket, etc)...?" and of course the old standby, "The alphabet game."

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Skokomish Farms

Sharon Watson

K-12

Mayan Unit Study
By Michael Leppert

The Mayans were, by our Western standards, one of the most advanced native peoples that ever lived. We hear of the Egyptians and their building skills and advanced culture, but until recently, seldom have we heard of the Mayans in this light. They werea fascinating and mysterious people who achieved far more in the realms of math and science than the Egyptians - and were expert builders in their own right. One Mayan structure, The Pyramid of the Sun, has a base as large as the Great Pyramid of Giza!

The ancient Mayans lived in the Yucatan Peninsula area of what is now Mexico and southward to the Central American countries of Guatemala, British Honduras, and portions of Hondurasand El Salvador. Their kingdom’s first period lasted from 1000 B.C. to 900 A.D. This period was lived in the tropical rain forests of the area and included building large pyramids and well-planned communities with other structures where the people lived and worked. These cities were mysteriously abandoned and the Mayans moved north into what is now Mexico and mingled with the Native Peoples there for second Mayan period, which lasted from 900 A.D. to 1500 A.D., when the Spanish defeated them.

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Design a Study

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