Contextualized Learning

Plantae and Animalia News: Ferns behaving like a bee colony, feline distant relative of sabertooth cat, and a mysterious whale

Here are some fun recent plant and animal stories I came across! Australian Staghorn Fern I recently read an interesting article about staghorn ferns in the New York Times. These ferns grow on the trunks of trees and channel rain water into the core of the plant. Researches have found that the variety of types […]

california history curriculum
California History

California History: Homeschool Curriculum and Online Classes

Are you looking for a California history curriculum for your 4th grader? Explore California Out of the Box! The curriculum is geared for a full year of study. Using a literature approach, families will read five historical fiction books, plus selected short stories and the Audubon Field Guide to California to explore history, geology, social […]

California History

Reflections on a Covid World (Part 2 & 3)

As the summer stretches on, instead of the state of California opening up more, I see it hitting pause or reverting closer to the “Safer at Home” mandate. One of the things that helps me get through it all — the thought of online-only classes in fall, more economic downturn and fallout, parents that were […]

California History

Reflections on a Covid World (Part 1)

Today I had a strange experience. My boys and I biked to the post office in Pasadena to mail some books out. As we pulled up we noticed a trash can that was burning. A moment later I noticed an ambulance driving down the street, headed somewhere else. The fire had melted the trash bag […]

California Field Trips

The Ocean Deep

What were your moments, growing up where you experienced deep learning? Was it a speech you gave? Was it an away trip or camp you attended? Was it a super-fun class project? Was it a book you read that plunged you into a situation very different from your own? How many moments like these did […]

California History

Coffee with Carrie: Igniting the Homeschool Incendio*!

When my eldest was in the fourth grade, and we initially began homeschooling, we met a family at one of our weekly activities who told us about a wonderful homeschool co-op in Arcadia. At the time we were plugged in to a few groups in Pasadena, so I did not get the chance to visit. […]

California Camping

NEW: Explore California and Early California Online Classes!

We are delighted to announce we will add three new 8-week online classes this Spring; they will be hosted on Outschool and Advanced Life Education. Both of these platforms accept charter school Purchase Orders. Our classes will start the week of April 6. (Coming up!) Also, if your student has been attending a public or […]

Covid Blog

Day 10: California Schools–Interested in Continuing Next Fall with an Established Independent Study Program?

No one knows exactly how long school closures might last. The following are links to public Independent Study Programs (ISPs) based in California that have been servicing homeschool families for some time. The advantage of going with one of these—they have mastered how to help your family cover the bases, while allowing for maximum freedom. […]

For Parents

If I Homeschool in California, is it Necessary to Track with Public School?

In California, the answer to this question may be yes or no, depending on how you decide to do homeschool. Option #1: Not Tracking with Public School You do not need to track with specific grade-level requirements for public school if you go with a PSP (private satellite program) — or — if you fill […]

For Parents

Should I Homeschool?

I am considering it, but am unsure. The idea of homeschooling feels like hanging from my ankles! Doubts. One reason you may be considering homeschooling is what you observe in either public or private school options. Maybe school is not quite working as you hoped. Maybe your son or daughter is not doing well in […]