Featured

Classes for Fall 2020

This Fall I am very excited to be teaching several classes that your crew might be interested in being a part of.

Two Delivery Systems:
In-Person at Grace Baptist Church on Haywood Rd in West Asheville. Classes are on Mondays at Grace.
Online-Live classes on MyHomeschoolFamily.com. These are NOT pre-recorded videos. These are Live, with interactive instruction. Online Classes will meet Wednesdays and Thursdays.

COST: The cost of all classes is 150 per semester.

Courses offered:
Introduction to Sign Language: ASL Start Up
This is a rigorous course that fulfills the requirements for high school credit towards a foreign language.

In Sign Language 1, students will be introduced to the basics and flexibility of Sign Language. They will learn about deaf culture, habits of effective interpreting, and the artistic beauty of the language. Learning is reinforced through large and small group activities, games, music and role play. 

This is an active course where students learn through doing, and being active. It is not a sit down and be quiet kind of class. Siblings and friend groups are encouraged to take the class together, so they can practice with each other.  Friendships form within the class as students get to know each other through conversation and interaction.

The applications of use are unlimited, and whether students dive deeper into learning and follow a path of working with folks who are hearing impaired, or whether they stop with one semester and learn just enough to communicate on a basic level, they will be enriched through the study of a language that engages the mind and the body.

If your student has studied sign language elsewhere, I will be glad to assess his or her current skills and determine which class would be the best fit.

Intro to Sign Language meets:
In-Person: Mondays 10:00 am
On-line: Wednesday 12:30 pm
Thursday 2:00 pm

Intermediate Sign Language: Conversational Sign
This is a rigorous course that fulfills the requirements for high school credit towards a foreign language.

In Sign Language 2 students will further develop their ASL proficiency and dive deeper into deaf culture and history.  They will learn more about the role of the interpreter in the community, especially the role of interpreting in a church setting. As in SL2, learning is reinforced through large and small group activities, games, music and role play. 

This is an active course where students learn through doing, and being active. It is not a sit down and be quiet kind of class. Siblings and friend groups are encouraged to take the class together, so they can practice with each other.  Friendships form within the class as students get to know each other through conversation and interaction.

The applications of Sign Language are unlimited, and whether students dive deeper into learning and follow a path of working with folks who are hearing impaired, or whether they stop with taking a couple of semesters in school, and learn just enough to communicate on a basic level, they will be enriched through the study of a language that engages the mind and the body.

If your student has studied sign language elsewhere, I will be glad to assess his or her current skills and determine which class would be the best fit.

Conversational Sign Language meets:
In-Person: Mondays 11:00 am
On-line: Wednesdays 2:00 pm
Thursdays 11:00am

Sign Language 3: Signing and Reading Signs
This is a rigorous course that fulfills the requirements for high school credit towards a foreign language.

Sign Language 3 has a goal of developing receptive and expressive ability, that allows recognition and demonstration of more sophisticated grammatical features of American Sign Language (ASL), each class meeting will be at least 75% silent (using only Sign Language to communicate). Students will also work to increase fluency and accuracy in finger spelling and numbers, as well.
Sign 3 is focused on interpreting – both Sign to English and English to Sign.

ASL3: A Silent Class meets:
In-Person: Mondays 12:00 pm
On-line: Thursday 3:00 pm

Entrepreneurship: Creating a Business Plan
Successful Businesses start with a well-thought out and researched Business Plan.

Do you have what it takes to operate and manage your own business? This course helps students build a business from the ground up, experiencing all aspects of planning a new venture–from determining the personal vision to conducting a market analysis and looking at start-up costs. In doing so, students learn how businesses truly drive the local and global economy. Entrepreneurship, which is a live class, not prerecorded, combines the flexibility of Internet-based learning with the benefits of face-to-face instruction.

Learning Targets:

Goal 1: Business Plan- Design, modify and present a professionally written business plan
Goal 2: Finances- Analyze the financial outlook for a start-up business venture.
Goal 3: Marketing- Create a company image and design a marketing/branding strategy.
Goal 4: Organization- Recommend appropriate business ownership/organization and management set-up.               
Goal 5: Personal Vision- Assess entrepreneurial attributes and evaluate a business venture against   personal vision.

Entrepreneurship meets:
In-Person: Mondays 1:30 pm
On-line: Wednesday 10 am

Career and Education Planning
I have my Masters Degree in Human Resource Management, with an emphasis in Career Development. I have worked with students from varied backgrounds for 25 years, helping them map Educational and Career Plans that are specific to their professional goals.

You:  “What in the world is Career Exploration?”
Me:   “Well, Technically, it is the process of researching evaluating and learning about modern work opportunities and how students can pursue the careers of their choice.”
You:  “Eh… sounds kind of boring.”
Me:   “Oh no, it is anything but boring! This is all about YOU and what your interests are; what kind of money you want to make; where you would like to live and what kind of job you’d like to have when you’re an adult; AND it’s about whether or not you want to or need to go to college, or a trade school, or pursue an apprenticeship.  It’s YOUR future, and that is anything but boring!”
You:  “Well… I’ll talk to my parents about it.  My current plan is to live in the basement until I’m 30, but whatev…”
Me:   “Yeah… you talk talk to your parents about that and I’ll see you in the Fall.”

Career Exploration is going to be guided by the interests and pursuits of the students involved.  After initial assessments and interviews, the class will host professionals from a wide variety of fields who will come and speak to the class about their field of expertise. Students will have opportunities to ask questions, research and consider options for themselves, which will lead to more meaningful discussions with their parents about Educational and Career Planning.

Career Exploration is a 1:1 Guided course. There will be times when the students involved will meet as a group. Individually scheduled.

Worry is just a waste of time!

In this season we are seeing the absolute sovereignty of God, and are joyfully resting in it.

IMG_20170814_173901606For years we have discussed and re-discussed
“what in the world are we going to do with Bill
(My mentally ill Bro-In-Law) when Mom
(my Mom-in-Law) dies?” Then out of nowhere
he was killed two weeks ago today in the freakiest
of vehicle accidents.

All those years of, “What in the world…” worries and fretting and time and energy, just washed away in a matter of seconds. God had opened no doors. He had tried to draw me into peace about the situation, and I refused to follow him. I kept at it.  I made phone call after phone call. As a family, we talked through a wide variety of scenarios.   I have a stack of paper work at my elbow of completed applications and pleas for appeal and waiver to the County and State Housing Authorities (to whom he owed money), that I am about to throw away. All wasted time. Wasted Energy. Wasted Worry.

Oh, How I hate to call it worry! Worry is sinful. It is direct disobedience to Jesus. (Luke 12)  Jesus says it is a complete waste of time. He goes on to say that those who worry, have little faith. YIKES!  “O You of Little Faith.” Luke 12:28b (ESV)
 Jesus does give us a fantastic alternative to worrying in Luke 12:31:
Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you. (ESV)
Seek His Kingdom?  Here’s what that looks like:

  • Praying for the Church, fellow Believers, and Elders
  • Studying Scripture
  • Praying for the lost
  • Sharing the gospel
  • Feeding the hungry
  • Visiting the sick and those in prison
  • Meeting the needs of orphans and widows
    (Matthew 25 and James 1)


Instead of wasting my time worrying,
I am actually supposed to be ministering. 

What a contrast! 

I’m supposed to be actively serving other people, not fretting over the future –
over which I HAVE NO CONTROL.
To quote my teenage self, “DUH!”

Both of our kids started college this semester after a lifetime of homeschooling, one as a Freshman and the other through dual-enrollment while finishing high school at home.  Talk about a prime opportunity to worry.  Man!  I could join the Olympic Worry Team over this one if left to me own >Vice<.  However, that isn’t where I am left.  I am left humbly sitting at the dining room table knowing that to spend a minute fretting over cruel people, harsh words, conflicting world views, etc. is a total waste of time.

What I can do In Obedience is:

  • pray for my adult children
  • continue to study God’s word with them deeply and faithfully
  • continue to teach them how to share the gospel and challenge them to do so


Thank you all for praying with us and for us over the past months. Mom (my MIL) is under hospice care, and we are enjoying this peaceful time with her, and trying to meet her needs.  Her mind is still pretty sharp and we are thankful for meaningful conversations.  We are also very thankful for family who works together so well. It is a joy.
Finally, I encourage you to…
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
    and he will make straight your paths.  Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)

3 Hots: Week 3, Days 1 – 3

Sorry. I have been a ba-a-a-a-d girl.  I will do better. I promise.

Monday we did our produce and meat run.  We found organic, whole chickens for .99/lb. Got all they had!  We love roasting whole chickens. So much you can do: enjoy eating it hot from the oven, make chicken salad, boil the carcass for stock, etc.  Chicken: It’s the gift that keeps on giving.

Breakfast
Oatmeal with apples and almonds

Lunch
Hamburgers
Fries
Salad  – do-it-yourself let’s the kids decide what they want on their own salad. This means they eat it all up!

Supper
Stir fry with chicken and rice.  Buying bags of shredded veggies makes stir fry super easy!

Tuesday

Breakfast
Blueberry Pancakes – this used up the last of the blueberries we bought a couple of weeks ago.

Lunch

We found 5# bags of baking potatoes for 1.49 yesterday.  We also found 24 oz steamer bags of broc, carrots and cauliflower for 1.49.  We combined this today for lunch:
Baked Potatoes
Steamed veggies
Toppings: 1 TBSP Butter, 1 TBSP Sour cream, 2 oz cheese, green onions

Supper
Chicken wings  – some hot, some not
Salad
Slaw

Wednesday

Breakfast
We took the left over baked potatoes from yesterday and diced them to make hashbrowns.  Baking the potatoes takes the moisture out and they make very crispy hash! We diced onions into the pan with the potatoes at the beginning. When these were translucent, I broke in a couple of eggs, and added some fresh parm. YUM!

Lunch
The girls baked a loaf of bread (GF, of course!) and we used that to make PB&J’s.  Nothing can beat a PB&J sandwich on still-warm fresh bread!
carrots and apple slices are the perfect sides

Supper
The Girl made her world-famous meatloaf for dinner.
Rice and Green beans rounded out the meal

I will see you back here soon.

~CS

3 Hots: Week 2, Day 4

It’s Thursday already?!  Where has this week gone?

Breakfast
Eggs
Apples
Bacon
Lunch           
We had our homeschool co-op group here today, and that means each family brought a dish to share. Co-op lunches are generally junk-foodier (I made that word up. HA!)  than we usually make, and today was no exception.
Nacho Dip – Velveeta (which is Gluten Free. Who knew?!), hamburger and Ro-tel, served with tortilla chips
Egg salad sandwiches on Chebe rolls
No-Bake Cookies – made with GF oatmeal, peanut butter and chocolate
Supper
Steak
Baked potatoes – Our Girl cut them in half lengthwise and put them cut side down on a baking sheet prepared with olive oil.  This cuts the baking time in half, and gives the potatoes a crisp, yummy side that reminds one of a french fry.  Nothing wrong with that!
Green Beans
Junk food every now and then isn’t so bad if you balance it with healthier foods over a period of days.
See you Friday.
~CS

3 hots this Friday

We wind down the week rather junk-foodie.
Usually when I make one fun food, I surround it
with healthy sides.  Not so today. Went all out.

Breakfast –

Sausage
Eggs
Apples

Lunch – We ate lunch with our co-op (homeschool) group today, and every family brings a dish to share

  • Pigs in a blanket (Little Smokies wrapped in gf dough and baked

  • Buffalo Chicken dip with Fritos

  • Sausage balls

  • Cake with fresh strawberries

Supper – continuing our junk food theme

Hot wings (On our Monday shopping trip, we picked up wings that had been marked down to .99/lb. Woo-hoo!
Cole Slaw
Green beans
Fries (We found organic  potatoes marked down to 1.49 for 3 lb bags Monday)  – The Girl sliced them pretty thin, laid them out on towels to soak up the water from them for 15 min, and then put cajun seasoning on them. They were crisp and tasty.
Homemade blue cheese dressing for the wings

Tomorrow we will eat much more healthy. HA!

Hope you have a terrific weekend!

~CS

Three Hots or Adventures in Meal Planning

I talk with other homeschooling moms every day.  (I dearly love my circle of friends.)  One of the recurring themes is “What are you cooking today?”  We cook 3 hot meals a day –  Everyday – and we serve 4-6 adult portion eaters at each meal. (In addition to our own two, we also homeschool 2 other young people.)  We are Gluten Free. We use raw dairy. We use mostly organic, local produce and meats.  Our monthly budget is just $450.  We grow, can, dehydrate, make from scratch and buy ahead as much as possible.  We very, very rarely use a product that is processed (the exception is my husband loves American Cheese. 🙂 )

My goal is to share what we are cooking each day, in order to

  • A. Help others with ideas for their own family.

  • B. Help me keep track of good ideas and abysmal failures.

 

February 18

Breakfast

  • Oatmeal with almonds and raisins

  • Coffee (adults)  Milk (kids) and Water

  • Bananas

 

Lunch

  • I baked 2 chicken breasts (seasoned with a citrus rub and salt, no oil. I put them in a baking dish in the oven for about 35 min, until the internal temp reached 170.  This was the juiciest chicken I have made in forever!)  After they had cooled a bit, I took the meat off of the bone and made Chicken Salad (diced chicken – about 4 cups altogether, about 1/3 c mayo, chopped onion, chopped celery, citrus seasoning to taste. I didn’t have any sweet pickles, or I would have added them as well.)

  • I baked crackers to go with the Chicken Salad, using this recipe http://glutenfreeonashoestring.com/ritz-schmitz-have-a-cracker/

  • Sliced apples

 

Dinner

  • Pad Thai with chicken and lots of veggies (broccoli, zucchini, onion, yellow squash, celery, carrots). 

I will try to keep up with this on a daily basis, and you feel free to share recipes, meal planning ideas and what is working for your fam.

~Carroll Sue

Real-Life Home-Educating

A friend of mine and I were having coffee the other day (really strong coffee in the middle of the day, no less!), just chatting about our kids and homeschooling and all of that.  A lady at the table beside us was obviously eavesdropping, and after she paid her bill, she came back to our table.
“I couldn’t help overhearing you talking about homeschooling.  I have felt the pull to home-school my children for 3 years, they are now 9 and 8, but everyone I talk to tells me how expensive it is and how hard it is.”
“Oh, girl,” says I, “you need to talk to some real-life homeschooling moms!  It is neither expensive nor difficult.  I mean, some days are challenging, but so are days when you are working a job or running a business.”
“I have been talking to other homeschooling moms,” She said.  “They’ve told me that they spend $500 – $1000 a year. And there are weeks that they are just in tears trying to keep their kids on track and their houses are a wreck and their husbands aren’t happy…”

Wow!  I stood up and hugged her (to keep from crying or laughing out-loud).  “We are starting our 9th year of teaching our kids at home, and if you combined all the books and supplies I have bought for school over those 9 years, it wouldn’t equal $500.  Yeah, sometimes my house is a wreck.  Sometimes I want to flush my kids’ heads in the toilet.  Sometimes I wrack my brain trying to remember how to divide fractions.  But, dang!  It is so worth it.”

We don’t offer our kids a cut rate education.  They are getting the best, because they are getting me. HA!  Not that my brain is the best, but my love for them  is the best.  No one else in the world cares as much about my kids learning as I do.  We can explore and search and learn all they are interested in.  We can surge ahead or slow down as needed.  We can field trip to our hearts’ content.  And WE DON’T NEED A JACKED UP CURRICULUM TO DO IT!  HA!

Some ways to save:

  • Ask Family members for specific gifts that fit the needs of your children and their education:
    Memberships to local zoos, Nature Centers, Museums, etc.; Horseback Riding Lessons; A Kindle; A series of books your child wants/needs; tickets to a play or ball game.  Our extended family has been curious and supportive on this journey.  They really like to feel a part of our kids’ education, and appreciate when I recommend something specific.

    Horse-back Riding lessons were a big hit this Spring
  • Get a Kindle (or tablet of your choice).  ALL, and I do mean ALL, of our kids’ literature books on FREE on the Kindle.  This is true not only for the coming year, but throughout middle and high school.  ALL.
  • Join a local Home-School Support Group.  These groups often have book sales and lending libraries. You will build relationships with other parents and talk about what is working for them;  borrow and lend books; plan trips together; share your experiences and encourage one another.
  • Join a group-learning or co-op group.  Each parent can teach the group something they are passionate about!  In our co-op group, Allison teaches American History; Krista teaches Science; I teach Sign Language; Natalie does craft projects that support the learning in History.  Janelle has wee ones ones, so she tends them while the others are learning. We are an informal group that has been together for 4 years.  Our kids now range in age 2  – 15 years old, and they enjoy the benefits of long-term friendships.  We eat lunch together each week.  We laugh and play and encourage each other… and the kids do too. 🙂  My Co-Op group has been one of the greatest assets to our home-schooling experience to this point.

    Some of the kids from our Wonderful Co-Op
  • Shop the Back-To-School sales at the end of summer and grab up a pile of spiral bound notebooks, pencils, glue, tape, crayons, etc.  I spent less than $20 at the beginning of the school year and have needed to buy nothing else this year.  I am not crafty, so I don’t spend money on doing crafty things, as some of my peers do.

There are folks that spend big bucks on curriculum, books and supplies.  But they don’t HAVE to do it.  They CHOOSE to do it.   Their kids aren’t smarter/faster/cuter/less smelly… they just use a different means of educating their kids. If you are currently home-schooling, I encourage you to not put a burden on those considering doing the same.  One does not need to spend big bucks to teach their kids at home.  You may choose to do that, but don’t pass that yoke on to another.

We use a Classical Approach to education.  Lots and lots of good, classic books.  We teach the kids to think and find information.  We teach them to reason and apply scripture.  We memorize a whole lot.  But more, so much more, we love.  We love being together; we love learning together; we love traveling together; we love discovering together.  We love.

If you are feeling the pull to home-school, but are afraid of the costs.  Don’t be.  You don’t have to spend a dime more than you would buying supplies to send your kids to school.  You may have a messy house from time to time, but who doesn’t?  You may have days (or weeks) when you feel like nothing is getting through (like algebra!).  But I experienced that a million times more in my career life than I do in my home-school life.

Be encouraged.  You don’t have to be brilliant, rich or Super-Mom to teach your children at home.  Just look at me! HA!