Educating the heart, mind, and soul in the Catholic tradition

Faith ~ Excellence ~ Passion

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Online Summer School 2015

Addendum: we need to change our graphic to: 6 GREAT SUMMER COURSES. We've added a Latin II/III course where students will be translating Winnie the Pooh. Now, you can't tell me that won't be fun! See below for the details.

Summer is a great time for light learning. It gives students the opportunity to keep their minds fresh as well as provide them with a head start when the fall semester rolls around again.

Our Unlimited Access program offers 150 recorded, independent-learning courses that can be taken at your own pace. It's a great way to keep learning alive year round.

Additionally, we have scheduled several live, interactive courses available for the summer semester. Teens are able to interact with their instructor and fellow students just as though they were in a physical classroom together:
  • How to Read Great Literature with Joseph Pearce
  • Christian Architecture through the Ages with Phillip Campbell
  • Health Science: Nutrition with Christine Hamilton, MS
  • Health Science: Physical Fitness with Christine Hamilton, MS
  • SAT Test Prep (updated for new changes in the SAT) with Erin Brown Conroy, MFA
(Choose "2015 Summer" semester.)

Here are course details for you:

Winnie the Pooh in Latin 
Class dates : Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, June 2nd - June 18th (June 2, 3, 4, 9, 10, 11, 16, 17, 18)
Total classes : 9
Starting time: 7:30 PM Eastern (6:30 Central; 5:30 Mountain; 4:30 Pacific)
Duration: 45 minutes
Prerequisite: Latin 2 (both parts 1 and 2) or equivalent.
Suggested grade level: 10th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: 1/2 semester Latin
Fee: $100 for all 9 classes
Instructor:  Emily Henry
Course description: Students who have taken Latin 2 (or higher) with Mrs. Henry will enjoy a laid back summer course of translating portions of Winnie the Pooh from Latin into English. The course will help students sharpen their grammar and translation skills without the pressure of a regular class or grades. This engaging and fun course will allow students to see Latin in a different light.
Course outline:  Translating a designated number of lines in preparation for class.
Course materials: Winnie Ille Pu (Latin Edition) (Click on title for ordering information: affiliate link)
Homework: Students should plan to spend up to an hour on their homework in preparation for each class.

Health Science: Nutrition 
Class dates: M, T, W, Th. June 8 to June 18, 2015
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 2:00 PM Eastern (1:00 Central; Noon Mountain; 11:00 AM Pacific)
Duration: 45 minutes
Prerequisite: none
Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: ½ semester Health Science
Fee: $50.00 for all 8 classes
Instructor: Christine Hamilton, MS
Course description: Teaches the basic concepts of healthy eating. We will learn what food means to the body and gain a better understanding of its necessity.
Course materials: Provided free by the instructor.
Homework: 1 hour per day.

How to Read Great Literature 
Class dates: T, W, Th, June 23, 24, 25, 30, July 1, and 2, 2015
Total classes: 6
Starting time: 2:00 PM Eastern (1:00 Central; Noon Mountain; 11:00 AM Pacific)
Duration: 1 hour per class
Prerequisite: The desire to read great literature.
Suggested grade level: 10th grade and above (including adults).
Suggested high school credit: 1/2 semester
Fee: $75 for all 6 classes.
Instructor: Joseph Pearce
Course description: Professor Pearce will outline and explain the basic rules for reading and understanding the deepest level of meaning in the great works of civilization, including Homer, Beowulf, Chaucer, Shakespeare, Hopkins, Eliot, Lewis and Tolkien.
Course materials: Class Notes will be made available during class
Homework: Suggested preparatory reading and online quizzes on each of the six classes

Health Science: Physical Fitness 
Class dates: M, T, W, Th. July 6 to July 16, 2015
Total classes: 8
Starting time: 2:00 PM Eastern (1:00 Central; Noon Mountain; 11:00 AM Pacific)
Duration: 45 minutes per class
Prerequisite: none
Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: ½ semester Health Science
Fee: $50.00 for all 8 classes.
Instructor: Christine Hamilton, MS
Course description: Foundational program that introduces teens to physical fitness and strength training. We will learn fitness training and put concepts into practice for each class. Program is designed for home, backyard, park or anywhere with minimal space requirements.
Course materials: Weights, 3 lb, 5 lb or soup cans.
Homework: 30-45 minutes per day.

Christian Architecture through the Ages 
Class dates: M, T, W, Th, July 13, 14, 15, 16
Total classes: 4
Starting time: 4:00 PM Eastern (3:00 Central; 2:00 Mountain; 1:00 Pacific)
Duration: 55 minutes per class
Prerequisite: None
Suggested grade level: 7th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: 1/4 semester World History
Fee: $65 for all 4 classes.
Instructor: Phillip Campbell
Course description: This course will acquaint students with the basic components of Christian ecclesiastical architecture, beginning with the basilicas of the late patristic era and moving through the Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neo-Classical and Neo-Gothic.
Course outline:
Day 1: Late patristic basilicas,
Day 2: Romanesque and Gothic,
Day 3: Renaissance and Baroque elements,
Day 4: Revivalism and the Modern Descent
Course materials: Any course materials will be provided free by the instructor.
Homework: Minimal amount of reading; test at the end of the week with suggestions for further reading.

The New SAT: What you need to Know to Score Well
Note: The new SAT is scheduled to start in the spring of 2016. However, the new PSAT is scheduled for October 2015. This course will also help students taking the PSAT.
Class dates: Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, June 22, 23, and 24.
Total classes: 5
Starting times June 22 and 23: Two 45-minutes sessions back-to-back each day at Noon and 1:00 PM Eastern, with a 15-minute break between (11:00 and Noon Central; 10:00 and 11:00 Mountain; 9:00 and 10:00 Pacific)
Starting time June 24: One 45-minute session at Noon Eastern Time (11:00 Central; 10:00 Mountain; 9:00 Pacific)
Duration: 45 minutes per class
Prerequisite: None
Suggested grade level: 8th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: 1/4 semester, Student Success Skills/Study Skills
Fee: $75 for all 5 classes
Instructor: Erin Brown Conroy, MA, MFA
Course description: This course acquaints students with the new components of the re-designed SAT, to become comfortable with the test content and style in order to score well in each test section. The course will also give examples of question types found on the test, help students to identify strategies to raise scores, and give practice opportunities so that the student can be fully prepared for the test.
Course outline:
Session 1: An overview of the test, including reading, writing, math, and eight key changes in the test
Session 2: Relevant words in context and command of evidence
Session 3: Essay writing and analyzing a source
Session 4: “Math that matters” and problems grounded in real-world contexts

Session 5: Analysis in science, history, and social studies, including founding documents and “great global conversation”
Course materials: All course materials are provided at no additional cost.
Requirements: Students must be able to use the Internet, to access practice tests and materials online.
Homework: Minimal amount of reading, including practice tests, with suggestions for further practice.

Monday, March 9, 2015

History Scope and Sequence: Sixth to Twelfth Grade

History Scope and Sequence
Middle through High School

Parents sometimes ask us about the order in which our courses should be taken. We answer these inquiries by focusing on the needs of that particular family. Based on recent questions from parents, we offer you two different history scope and sequences here.

The first was developed for a family who wanted to begin 7th grade with Ancient History and move chronologically, ending with World History in the 12th grade.

The second was developed for a family who wanted to learn American History beginning in 6th grade and then cover other eras in high school.

Note the order of these courses is only a suggestion and can be adjusted to suit a family's specific needs and interests.

Chronological History Scope and Sequence
7th Grade 
Dawn of History: Mesopotamia, Egypt, China, Persia (12 weeks)
The Glory of Ancient Greece (12 Weeks)

8th Grade 
The Life and Time of the Ancient Romans (12 weeks)
Making of the Modern World, Part One (12 weeks)

9th Grade 
Making of the Modern World, Part Two (12 weeks)
Foundations of Christian Historiography (4 weeks) 
An Archaeological Survey of the Old and New Testaments (10 weeks)

10th Grade 
Catholic Middle Ages (12 weeks)
Roots of the Revolt (1417-1560) (6 weeks)
The Age of the Religious Wars (1560-1648) (6 weeks)

11th Grade 
Early American History (1492 to 1763); Discovery to the Dawn of Revolution (12 weeks)
U.S. History: Revolution, Republic and Union (1763-1865) (12 weeks)

12th Grade 
Modern American History; 1865 - 2000 (12 weeks)
World History; 12 Inventions That Revolutionized the World (12 weeks)

World History Scope and Sequence

6th Grade 
The American Revolution; Liberty! (10 weeks)
The Civil War; A Nation Divided (10 weeks)

7th Grade
World War I; What Price Glory? (10 weeks)
World War II; Allies and Axis (10 weeks)

8th Grade 
Making of the Modern World (24 weeks)

9th Grade 
Foundations of Christian Historiography (4 weeks)
Dawn of History: Mesopotamia, Egypt, China, Persia (12 weeks)
The Glory of Ancient Greece (12 Weeks)

10th Grade 
The Life and Times of the Ancient Romans (12 weeks)
Catholic Middle Ages (12 weeks)

11th Grade 
Roots of the Revolt (1417-1560) (6 weeks)
The Age of the Religious Wars (1560-1648) (6 weeks)
Early American History (1492 to 1763); Discovery to the Dawn of Revolution (12 weeks)

12th Grade 
Modern History; 1865 - 2000 (12 weeks)
World History; 12 Inventions That Revolutionized the World (12 weeks)

Monday, February 23, 2015

6 Forms for Successful Homeschool Planning

Homeschool Planning
Maureen Wittmann

(If you’d like to read more on this topic, see “Scheduling: Finding Order in Chaos” by Maureen Wittmann in The Catholic Homeschool Companion [Sophia Institute Press].)

Every homeschool parent approaches planning the school year a little differently. The following ideas and forms are only suggestions. Take what works for you and your homeschool. Tweak and adjust until it fits your family dynamic.

I suggest setting aside dates on your calendar or daily planner for your homeschool planning days. It is a task that takes considerable time and thought. Plan ahead so you can block out time to meet with individual children. You'll also need alone time. See if you can have your spouse or a grandparent take the children for extended periods of time so you can have quiet time to peruse your homeschool catalogs, review online classes, check with local support group leaders about co-ops, etc. Then, put it all to paper.

Here are a series of forms to help organize your school plan for the year. Each form includes instructions and examples. They will automatically download as Word (docx) files. Let us know in the comments if you have any questions or suggestions.

6 Steps for Successful Homeschool Planning:

STEP 1. As the current school year begins to wind down, take time to prayerfully reflect on the success of your school year. Write down what worked well and what didn’t.

Use this form: Reviewing Last Year

STEP 2. Before the beginning of the school year, put together a “course of study.” I suggest June, when everything is fresh in your mind but you’ve had a chance to reflect on the year. Your “course of study” will include all of the courses you want to tackle throughout the entire school year. This is a broad plan. You’ll write down goals, books to be used, and enrichment ideas.

Use this form: Annual Course of Study

STEP 3. Take your annual goals and break them down month by month.  By looking at the year month by month, you can make arrangements for holidays and preplanned events.

STEP 4. At the beginning of the each quarter, write out a quarterly course of study. This is similar to what you did for the year, only with more detail. This gives you the opportunity to review your current achievements and make adjustments for any unforeseen events. You can also make adjustments for children who are advancing at a different rate than expected.

Use this form: Quarterly Course Plan

STEP 5. The final scheduling form is the weekly itinerary. Every weekend, sit down and complete the plan for the next week. If your child is older and self-directed, then he or she can complete this step alone. This itinerary is then given to each child on Monday morning. They can check off tasks as they are completed.

Use this form: Weekly Itinerary

STEP 6. If you are scheduling your day hour by hour, then I have a daily planning form for you. This is important to use if you have time commitments such as live, interactive online classes, lessons outside the home, club meetings, etc.

Use this form: Daily Itinerary 

Note: I am not the original creator of some of these forms.  A friend gave them to me when I began homeschooling twenty years ago. Ever since, I’ve been tweaking them, sharing them far and wide, and making excellent use of them in my own homeschool.  It is my hope that you will be able to make excellent use of them as well.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Homeschool Planning: Reviewing Last Year

20 Questions to Ask Before Planning Your Homeschool Year

Before beginning to plan the next school year, it's important to first review the current year. Here is a form to help you reflect on your successes and failures: Reviewing My Homeschool Year (will download as a Word file). By honestly answering these questions, you can begin the process of making next school year your best year ever!

Here are 20 questions to ask yourself about this school year:
  • What were our greatest successes? 
  • Where did we fail? 
  • Am I happy with our homeschool “philosophy”? 
  • What was our best homeschool day? 
  • What was our worst homeschool day? 
  • How was my time management?
  • What subjects were completed successfully? 
  • What subjects are still uncompleted? 
  • Does my husband have any concerns? 
  • Do my children have any concerns? 
  • How was discipline handled? 
  • How was our home management? 
  • How was our spiritual life intertwined into our homeschool?
  • What was each child’s greatest success? (List out each child.) 
  • What social activities benefited our family and our homeschool the most? 
  • Do any of my children have special needs or learning disabilities that needed to be addressed? 
  • Did I experience burnout? 
  • Did the children experience burnout?
  • Did we utilize local support? 
And finally ...
  • Why do we homeschool? List all reasons, big and small.

Saturday, February 14, 2015

Top-10 Tips for Homeschool Planning for High School

Over the next week, I'll be writing a series of posts on planning the school year. Once the series is complete, I'll pull the posts together into one cohesive document to share on the website. I will also include actual planning forms to give you solid, practical help.

To start, here are some basics for making a multi-year plan along with the first of the planning forms:

Top-10 List:
Planning the high school years with Homeschool Connections.
  1. Determine what courses are needed to meet basic graduation requirements. Here is help to get you started: Basic Scope and Sequence for College-Bound Catholic Students. You could also use your state's requirements as a base to start.
  2. Review your child's coursework to date. On your scope and sequence, cross off courses completed so far.
  3. Make a list of courses still needed for graduation. Determine how you will spread them out over the remaining high school years.
  4. Ask your child about future goals. A student who wants to be a programmer will take different courses than a student who wants to be a chemist. 
  5. Determine your student's strengths and weaknesses. For example a student who struggles with language, but learns well using a multi-sensory methods (dyslexic children often fall into this category), may do better with American Sign Language than with Spanish. 
  6. Take into consideration your student's loves. An example here is a student who loves to write stories. That student should take more of our fiction-writing courses. They will still learn important writing skills in addition to learning litererary analysis. The bonus is that they will enjoy learning it more in a creative-writing atmosphere. 
  7. Once you have taken the above steps, you will have a strong idea of where you want to go in the future. Now open and save the HSC course catalogs and review all the options available to you. 
  8. Look for other resources to help you and your child meet goals. Books; websites; local co-ops; other online course providers; etc.
  9. Seek out advice from other homeschooling parents. If you're having trouble with a needed course or can't decide on the best path to take, go to your local or online support group. We're also here to help you at
  10. Free planning forms can be found at (HSC forms forthcoming.)

Use this form to complete these steps successfully: Planning High School with HSC (Word document will download automatically).

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

New Catholic Homeschooling Book

Why Should I Learn This is now available in Kindle, ePub, and PDF formats. To download, visit Free Homeschool eBook.

Repost from Maureen Wittmann

There's a new Catholic homeschool book in town. Though, really, it would be great for any family with school-age children. I've always said "We're all homeschoolers, no matter where our children get their academics." After all, where did your children learn to walk and talk? To respect you and to love Jesus? Umm, at home, right?! And, to be honest folks, if you're not engaged in your child's education, they won't be as successful as they could be in school. Conversely, if education is important to you, if your children see you reading, if you and your children explore and question the world together, and if your children witness your joy when you learn something new, by golly, they will be successful in school -- no matter where that school is located.

Now that I've gotten that off my mind, I want to tell you about this new book. It's something that is very close to my heart. It's something that started in a little coffee shop in Howell, MI when I was brainstorming with my dear friend Erin Brown Conroy (also master writing instructor at Homeschool Connections). I was feeling frustrated that more students weren't taking philosophy and logic courses. Courses, I personally feel are vitally important to every child's education.

That's when Erin said, "What about a book called something like Why Should I Learn This?" So, I said, "Sure! Let's do it!" So we did. That brings me to today. To this big announcement ... two years later. Why Should I Learn This: A Guide for Homeschool Parents and Students has been released and is currently available at Homeschool Connections eBook.

Eventually, we'll put the book to print. However, today, it's a free eBook. It's currently available as a PDF that you can download to your hard drive or read online. Next week, we'll make it available for Kindle. We're also looking into other formats for you.

You may be asking, "That's nice, but what exactly is the book about and why should I take time to read it?"

Why Should I Learn This is a compilation of essays written by a wide variety of authors, much like my previous books A Catholic Homeschool Treasury and The Catholic Homeschool Companion. It includes great authors such as Joseph Pearce, Mike Aquilina, Carol Reynolds, Mary Ellen Barrett, Gray Michuta, Monica Ashour, and so, so many more.

The book demonstrates the importance of a variety of subjects. For example, if your child were to say to you, "Mom, algebra is stupid. I don't see how it'll help me in life." you could read the chapter Why Should I Learn Algebra together. If you and your spouse are debating whether or not formal logic should have a place in your homeschool, you could read Why Should I Learn Formal Logic and see what Dr. Robert Gotcher has to say on the subject.

Why Should I Learn This also has a chapter on educational approaches (pedagogy). If you've been hearing about Charlotte Mason education or classical education, and you want to know more, you can open that chapter and get the scoop.

You don't have to take my word for it. Here are the reviews that have already started coming in:
“Here’s the answer to many of the Why’s you (or your children) have asked about education. Whether you homeschool or not, this book is a treasury of well-crafted answers that will leave you with answers and, amazingly, even entertained!” —Sarah Reinhard, author and blogger, and 
“Every homeschooling parent has faced the question: “Why are we doing this?” Whether it’s asked by a grumpy child or simply a feeling that lingers in the air at the end of a frustrating day, it’s inevitable that sometimes you (or your children) will wonder if what you’re learning really matters. That’s why this book is such a great resource: With beautiful writing about the relevance of each subject, Why Should I Learn This will rekindle the passion for education—not just for your students, but for you, too.” —Jennifer Fulwiler, author and blogger, 
Why Should I Learn This is a reminder that education is not merely a stepping stone into the work force, but a good in and of itself. Education is an important facet of encouraging our children to flourish as human beings made in the image of God. I found myself nodding along as the contributors articulate what makes the subjects I love so valuable. They also challenge me to look at the subjects I’ve never been inclined to with new appreciation. Why Should I Learn This will inspire you to dive into learning right along with your children.” —Haley Stewart, author and blogger, 
So, head on over to Homeschool Connections eBook and get your copy today while it's free.

Let us know what you think in the comments. We're already planning a sequel, so don't hesitate to tell us what we missed. And, finally, humbly, we know there are a couple of typos in the PDF. The great thing is that we'll be able to fix them before the next edition.

Praying you have an amazing 2015 and that Why Should I Learn This helps you and your children in a special way.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Free Kindle Fire Giveaway

To celebrate our soon-to-be-released eBook Why Should I Learn This, we are giving away a free Kindle Fire.

Why Should I Learn This is a 2-year project in the making. A $9.95 value, the eBook will initially be offered for free.

If you'd like a preview, you can download a sample chapter at: Free Homeschool eBook.  You can also sign up to receive notification when the entire eBook is ready (estimated date of release is December 15, 2014).

The sample chapter is Why Should I Learn Punctuation and Grammar by Erin Brown Conroy, MA, MFA. It is a terrific chapter to read whether you have grade school or high school children.

Why Should I Learn This is a compilation of essays written by over 30 authors including Joseph Pearce, Michele Quigley, Mike Aquilina, Professor Carol, and more.

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Friday, November 21, 2014

Creative Writing: Poetry

This is a great course that will help your high school student be a better writer and have a greater appreciation for beautiful poetry, as well as lift his or her heart up to God.

(click on course title to register)

Note: Only 20 students accepted in this course.
Class dates: Mondays, January 5 to April 20, 2015. No class Feb. 16 or April 5.
Total classes: 14
Starting time: 1:00 pm Eastern (Noon Central; 11:00 Mountain; 10:00 Pacific)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: None
Suggested grade level: 9th to 12th grade
Suggested high school credit: 1 full semester Poetry or Literature/ Creative Writing
Fee:  $210 for all 14 classes.
Instructor: Sally Thomas
Course description: An introduction to the craft of poetry writing, including examination of traditional English verse forms and free verse, and experimentation with rhetorical techniques. Though this is a writing-intensive class, students will also be immersed in the reading of poetry. Through their experiences in examining how poems work and putting their observations into practice, students will prepare themselves for the challenge of college by developing heightened sensitivity as close readers and a greater command of rhetoric in their own writing, whether poetry or prose.
Course outline:
Class 1: Introduction
Class 2: Verse Systems
Class 3: Accentual Meters
Class 4: Syllabic Verse
Class 5: Forms in Free Verse
Class 6: Ode Forms
Class 7: Quantitative Verse
Class 8: Repetitive Structures
Class 9: Comical Schemes
Class 10: Rhetorical Schemes
Class 11: Variation and Mimesis
Class 12: More About Rhyming
Class 13: Uncommon Schemes
Class 14: Poetry Festival
Course materials: Rhyme’sReason, John Hollander.
Homework: At least one chapter in Hollander each week, plus additional poetry readings, provided by the instructor. One poetry-writing exercise per week.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Why Should I Learn Punctuation and Grammar?

A 2-year project in the making, Homeschool Connections will be releasing it's new eBook Why Should I Learn This? next month (December 2014). A $9.95 value, the eBook will initially be offered for free.

If you'd like a preview, you can download a sample chapter by clicking here: Free Homeschool eBook. You can also sign up to receive notification when the entire eBook is ready.

The sample chapter is Why Should I Learn Punctuation and Grammar? by Erin Brown Conroy, MA, MFA. A terrific chapter to read whether you have grade school or high school children.

Why Should I Learn This? is a compilation of essays written by over 30 authors:
Joseph Pearce; Gary Michuta; Mike Aquilina; Alicia VanHecke; Christian Ohnimus; Ana Braga-Henebry, MA; Alison Stanley, JD; Ed L. Rivet II, MPA; Joan Stromberg; Phillip Campbell III; Allison Gingras, MEd; Emily Henry; Irma Luz Schmitt, MEd; Suchi Myjak, MS; Mary Ellen Barrett; Nancy Carpentier Brown; Henry Russell, PhD; Dayspring Brock, MHum; Cay Gibson; Jean Hoeft, MA; Mary Gildersleeve; Carol Reynolds, PhD; Michele Quigley; Margot Davidson, MEd; Erin Brown Conroy, MA, MFA; Robert Gotcher, PhD; Jean Rioux, PhD; Dave Palmer, MTS; Mary Daly; Matthew Watkins, MS; MacBeth Derham; Monica Ashour, MTS, MHum; Lisa Mladinich; Maureen Wittmann.

Subjects included:
Economics; Geography; The Constitution; Government, Elections, and Politics; Using Historical Fiction; Christian Historiography; Medieval History; American Sign Language; Latin; Spanish; Computer Skills; Critical Reading and Thinking Skills; Organizational Skills; G. K. Chesterton; Classical Literature; Modern Literature; Using Picture Books; Shakespeare; Tolkien; Algebra; Arts and Crafts; Music History; Using a Charlotte Mason Education; Using Montessori; Organizational Skills; Phonemics; Using the Trivium; Philosophy; Formal Logic; Thomistic Philosophy; Astronomy; Environmental Science; Science and its Relationship to Faith and Reason; Geology; Nature Studies; All Theology through The Theology of the Body; Apologetics; the Early Church Fathers; Heresies; Theology of the Body; Communications; Fiction Writing; Punctuation and Grammar; Rhetoric and Writing.
More information to come as we near the publication date ... 

Thursday, November 13, 2014

A Reading List: Math and Living Literature

"I hate math!!!" Have you ever heard this from one of your children? Perhaps it was you yourself who you heard screeching in frustration. We want to introduce you to a new idea -- Math Appreciation. Yes, really, "appreciation".

If you signed your child up for piano lessons, would you sit her down to learn piano without first ever hearing beautiful music? Would you give your child a canvas and oil paints without first viewing beautiful art? We are suggesting you do the same for math.

Before introducing your child to complicated math lessons, build an appreciation. One way to do this is through living literature. Yes, there is a thing such as math lit -- real books as opposed to textbooks. We are not saying textbooks are not important. They do have their place. However, it's vitally important that they be approached with a love of learning if they are to have significant success.

Below is a math reading list from Homeschool Connections math instructor Jean Hoeft, MA. These are Jean's favorites. If this list whets your appetite, scroll to the end for other math lit resources. Trust us, give it a try. You may just end up saying, "I love math!!!"

Mrs. Hoeft's Top-20 List: Math Lit for All Ages

Grade School

Math Curse by Jon Scieszka 
How Much Is a Million? by David M. Schwartz

Grapes Of Math by Greg Tang

Middle School

Fantasia Mathematica edited by Clifton Fadiman

A Gebra Named Al: A Novel by Wendy Isdell

TheNumber Devil: A Mathematical Adventure by Hans Magnus Enzensberger

ThePhantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster
The Book of Numbers by John Horton Conway and Richard K. Guy

High School to Adult

More math lit lists for you ...

For the Love of Literature: Teaching Core Subjects through Literature by Maureen Wittmann

MacBeth's Opinion

Living Math

Bonus: A Great Math YouTube Channel (Fun!)

Numberphile: You'll see numbers a little differently after taking advantage of these videos. As always, with anything online, preview first.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Win Unlimited Access to Online Classes for Catholic Families!

TAN Books is hosting a contest! WIN 4 free months of Unlimited Access to online courses for Catholic families from  Three winners and you can enter everyday! To enter, scroll down and follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter widget below. That's it. Then, share with all your friends and family to get extra entries.

Not just for homeschoolers, is an online Catholic curriculum provider.

Whether you're a middle school student looking to improve your writing skills, a high school student interested in learning the Catholic perspective in history, a college-bound student in need of ACT or SAT test prep, or an adult thirsting for a deeper understanding of Catholic theology, Homeschool Connections has the course for you. 

You can learn online, at your pace, on your schedule, anytime of day or anytime during the year. For just $30 a month, your entire immediate family will have Unlimited Access to 150-plus courses from Theology to History, from Math to Science, from Writing to Philosophy, and so much more. You can try it out for 7 days for only $1!!! 

Improve your grades, expand your mind, and raise your heart to God. Visit to learn more. 

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Thank you TAN Books for sponsoring this contest and for all you do in publishing great Catholic books!

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Raffle: Free Unlimited Access to Online Classes!

TAN Books is hosting a contest: 3 lucky winners will receive a free semester (4 months!!!) of Unlimited Access. Yes, the best deal in Catholic homeschooling -- Unlimited Access to over 150 online courses for your entire family (mom, dad, kids!). These are recorded, independent-learning, easy-to-use courses covering all school subjects.

So, here's how you enter to win ... follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter widget below. That's it. Then, share with all your friends and family to get free entries. Plus, you can come back everyday for extra entries.

If you already subscribe to Unlimited Access, that's okay -- we'll give you 4 extra months if you win. So, if you want to sign up for Unlimited Access today, go ahead and get started today learning in a dynamic way with the best instructors in the country.

Good luck everyone!!!

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Thank you TAN Books for hosting this contest and for all you do to help Catholic families!

Monday, November 10, 2014

Beginning Latin for Homeschoolers

Due to requests from parents, we have added a Spring Latin I, Part One course starting in January. To register, please click here: Homeschool Connections Registration.

Here are the course details:
Latin I (Wheelock), Part One
Class dates: Mondays,
January 5 to March 30, 2015. No class Feb. 17.
Total classes: 12
Starting time: 11:00 am Eastern (10:00 Central; 9:00 Mountain; 8:00 Pacific)
Duration: 1 hour
Prerequisite: None
Suggested grade level: High school
Suggested high school credit: 1 full semester Latin or foreign language
Fee: $175 for all 12 weeks.
Instructor: Emily Henry
Course description: High School students new to Latin will be introduced to all verb and noun forms and will translate famous Latin anecdotes as well as passages from Wheelock (plus other material supplemented by the instructor). English grammar will be emphasized in addition to discussing Roman history.
Course outline: We will be covering the first ten chapters in Wheelock. We will have two class periods in particular that will be dedicated to review, implementation, etc. There will also be a number of quizzes and a final exam.
Course materials: Wheelock's 6th or 7th Edition. It is mandatory that students have a functioning headset with a microphone.
Homework: Students will translate practice sentences, phrases, and passages provided in Wheelock and the Wheelock handbook (supplemented by the teacher). Students will need to be prepared to dedicate one hour a day to homework assignments and studying forms/vocabulary. The instructor grades the homework.

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