Tag Archives: conference

Home school conference 

Last weekend we packed up the kids and drove to Greenville, SC for the Great Homeschool Convention.   We stayed at a hotel with a pool, signed the kids up for the weekend-long VBS that was offered, and invited my parents to attend the conference with us.   We were ready to be immersed by “all things home school”.  In my mind, this was a family vacation that would encourage us as a family and be the pep rally that we needed to know that we CAN do this.  The conference was all of that, and more.

There was so much to learn and be exposed to throughout the weekend. Every hour of the three-day conference offered ten different speakers that we could listen to on various topics: parenting, discipline, apologetics, math, reading, science, history, brain differences between boys and girls, etc. The topics were never-ending.  During our first session, Tom and I discovered an engaging and very applicable speaker who taught us new parenting tips.  The speaker is the founder of Celebrate Calm (that just sounds nice doesn’t it?).  This speaker became Tom’s parenting guru – he went to every seminar that this man held all weekend.  We even bought his CDs.  If we can apply half of what we learned, we will have a calmer and more focused household….the key word being “if”.

There was an exhibit hall at the conference as well.  It looked like a giant gymnasium filled with every type of curriculum that was ever created.  It was very overwhelming.  The first time that I walked into the exhibit hall I literally turned around, walked back out and declared myself, “not ready for that!”  Eventually I did brave the expo and ended up buying a writing curriculum, getting ideas on how to teach art, and shock of all shockers, deciding to teach my kids Latin.  I am still surprised by that one!  I left the conference knowing that homeschooling is flexible and every changing.  What I don’t like using this year I can replace with something else for next year. It can be ever evolving, to a degree.

And the kids, they loved the VBS program! We were going to leave early on Saturday because our brains were full, but the kids wanted to stay until the end.  I was also very grateful that my parents were there with us.  We couldn’t have done it without them.  They allowed us to stay through lunch or later in the day while they took the kids swimming.  A hotel with a pool is a must for our family!!

I was so inspired by the conference that I may travel to Winston Salem, NC for the conference that is being held there this summer.  I would recommend a home school conference to any parent, even someone doesn’t want to home school.  A conference can be a great learning experience for parents in general.  I have to admit, it was difficult leave the mountain top experience of the conference and be immediately thrown back into our reality (three loud kids in the car for two hours while they bothered each other and whined), but now we have something to aim for.  We have begun to apply some of what we learned and it has helped with discipline, attitude, and responses (both mine and the kids’). For example, I am trying to encourage and compliment more than I discipline.  For us, the conference cemented in our minds what we want to accomplish and what we want our household to look like and we are slowly moving in that direction.

Faiths parent teacher conference



Last week we met with Faith’s kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Butler, to discuss Faith’s progress so far this year.  It was a wonderful conference.  Mrs. Butler is the sweetest teacher.  She has been teaching at CDS for over fifteen years and taught elsewhere before CDS.  She is one of those teachers that can even correct a parent without anyone getting offended.  One afternoon at carpool, during the second week of school, she smiled real big and said, “Mom, it would be great if Faith could get to school earlier so that she could play with her friends before class starts.”  I smiled back and said, “Ok.  Sure.  I will do that.”  I almost replied, “Yes, Ma’am.”  She is very motherly and always smiling and I love her for it!

But, I digress…..

In the conference, Mrs. Butler had many nice things to say about Faith.  She said that Faith is a friend to all.  Faith doesn’t care who she is partnered with because she loves everyone in her class.   She also said that Faith doesn’t put the stress on herself to be perfect that she did at the beginning of school.  Faith has loosened up a little bit and is now enjoying school and it shows. She is even told to quiet down every once in a while…which is a good thing!

Here is her progress report for the year so far.  She needs to raise her hand more, work on her handwriting and pencil grip, and continue to practice her sight words.  Currently, Faith is using the “thumb wrap” method to hold her pencil instead of using two fingers to grip it.  We are having to do finger strengthening exercises so that she can hold it the right way.  Her fingers aren’t strong enough to write while holding the pencil the right so she is having to use her thumb to help her.    We practice every other day or so…probably not often enough.  20131117-072202.jpg


Here is what she is responsible for learning throughout her kindergarten year.  Check out the math!  It is very advanced for kindergarten.  I am amazed at what she is learning.  Covenant Day is a very academic school.  I love it!



Here is the “piece de resistance”.  Mrs. Butler personalized some goals for Faith for the year.  She took what she knows about Faith, her strengths and weaknesses, her personality, her fears, and made a list of how to encourage Faith to be herself and to challenge her to be better.  She also made sure that Faith continues to grow in her faith in the Lord.  I almost cried when I read it.  This is what we are paying for at Covenant Day.  We are paying for her to be in a loving Christian environment where she is cherished as a child of God and encouraged to be who God made her to be.  I feel so good every time I drop her off at school.   I know that she is where the Lord wants her to be.  I am so sure of it that I am willing to go back to work to keep her there.