Thursday, May 26, 2011

My Homeschool Conference Plans

I’ve been lamenting for a while that while that I really would love to attend a homeschool convention. The idea being that you could pick and choose which talks to enjoy and you could walk the vendor halls. The idea being that you would get a sense of refreshment, new ideas, and be able to check out a variety of homeschool offerings.
It’s not that we need new supplies, but it’s nice to be able to look at items before you purchase them. I’ve had a few Nature Titles on my list for ages, but would really like to check them out before purchasing them. Then there’s the major curriculum switches we made, it might have been easier to have been able to thumb through all the manuals I was attempting to check out e-versions of.
It’s actually more the refreshment aspect that appeals to me. The idea of learning more about the ideas and philosophies we have would be amazing. So it was really neat to stumble across people who took these kinds of matters into their own hands. How? They held their own homeschool conference.

Before you get to carried away wondering which amazing speakers you’d try to invite to come chat with you, let me explain a bit more. They gathered resources and set up in hotels, libraries, and other public places. The idea being that they removed themselves from the everyday in order to concentrate more on ideas and topics they wanted to learn about in order to bring refreshment and new life to their own homeschools.

The idea wasn’t just intriguing, it was very possible for me! I might not be able to attend a conference, but for me that’s because there aren’t any in my area. It’s disappointing that people aren’t often willing to come to Australia and share their knowledge and products with us. Some of them won’t even willingly ship this far which is equally frustrating, but I digress...

A home conference was something I could do! Now, I know some of you are probably wondering what about those free etickets I won to the two well known online conferences and why they didn’t fulfill those needs. Two words. Time Differences. Which means I receive recorded sessions, which are just as good as the live. Unfortunately, I haven’t had a spare moment to listen to some from one conference and the other conference won’t have theirs available for another few weeks yet.

I decided to make a list of all the resources I had that I’d not had the chance to plunge into as I’d hoped. Once I had my list made I based a schedule around that. It all came together really smoothly. The idea is that I'll hit the library and a few other local places to work through my own "inservice" day, better known in the homeschooling world as a convention or conference. Im really looking forward to mine!

Here's a few extra thoughts: I think I could have easily made it a four-day session, but I really didn't want to do that. I also took the suggestion from others to leave the home to get the most out of this time. Less distractions and all that. I avoided doing this on a weekend for a variety of reasons. One, and most likely the biggest, was that our library is only open a short time on Saturdays. Secondly, and equally big and pressing, we enjoy hanging out and being a bit lazy on Saturday mornings. Everyone looks forward to it and in the afternoon we spend a few hours doing something together as a family before each person gets lost in a hobby of choice. I enjoy those moments as much as the rest of my family and I really wanted to keep that time special for them.

I've also set things up so that I can start at 9 am. The idea being that the kids will go hang with a local grandparent while Mr S is off to work, & I'll trek over to the library. Unfortunately, our library doesn't open until 930  so I'll probably do my first listening session while walking on a local walk path. {If you live around my parts and see some women "texting madly" while walking. It's probably just me taking notes on my phone!} Mr S and I all ready agreed to meet up for lunch as our library isn't too far from the office he works in, so there will be minimal travel for me which means I can spend more time listening & learning. I'm looking forward to the refreshment and what it will bring to our homeschool! 

Here's links to the resources mentioned in my schedule:
  • Heart Of The Matter mp3 sessions -- You can buy 5 for $5 or 10 for $10 and so on.
  • Simply Charlotte Mason -- you can find both here as well as other terrific resources.
  • Vision 1 & Vision 2 -- they are not other's visions just resources, verses, & ideas to help you make our own
  • Charlotte Mason Volume 6 -- this is suppose to be a modernized reading and it's available free; I'm choosing to use it because my volumes are in the US.
  • Geography Info -- this could be used as a curriculum on it's own, we don't need a geography curriculum but we love geography and this is free!
  • Homeschooling As A Ministry blog post -- I may or may not read this after Sally Clarkson session, but I linked to it because I enjoyed it when I read it the first time.

This post linked to The Carnival Of Homeschooling.

1 comment:

Lin said...

Hi, stumbled upon your blog while I was looking for homeschool planners (and yours are lovely btw) and just wanted to say- What a great idea to make your own conference! I've struggled with the time zones myself being in Auckland. I'll definitely look into getting the mp3 files in the future. Do you have any websites in particular you would recommend? Thanks!