Friday, October 31, 2008

Other homeschooling carnivals

The Carnival of Homeschooling has been going almost three years. It is cool that there are several other blog carnivals about homeschooling. Here are some recent editions:

The Canadian Home Educators Blog Carnival.

The Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival at In the Sparrow's Nest.

Carnival of Cool Homeschoolers at Homeschooled twins.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

How long has it been since we had good government?

The Headmistress made we wonder just how long it has been since we had good government. In Here's a New Idea... she has this quote:

"The budget should be balanced, the Treasury should be refilled, public debt should be reduced, the arrogance of officialdom should be tempered and controlled, and the assistance to foreign lands should be curtailed lest Rome become bankrupt. People must again learn to work, instead of living on public assistance."
Marcus Tullius Cicero - 55 BC

Technorati tags: government, good government

Out of the box thinking

Carolyn Morrison's daughter shares her thoughts on How Can I Teach Out-of-the-Box Thinking?

I enjoy reading about homeschooled children who are now adults, and what they think about homeschooling.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Reminder - send in a post for the next Carnival of Homeschooling

Have you decided what will be your next entry for the next Carnival of Homeschooling? You still have a couple days. The next carnival will be held at Apollos Academy.

As always, entries are due Monday evening at 6:00 PM Pacific Standard Time.

Here are the instructions for sending in a submission.

Many people send in submissions via Blog Carnival. It seemed to be down much of the last couple days. If you are not able to use Blog Carnival, you can send your submission directly via email, check the instructions.

Carnival of Homeschooling

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

Don't like your teenager? Go to Nebraska!

Recently Nebraska passed a law allowing parents to abandon their children at hospitals, without fear of prosecution. Last month a father left his nine children at a Nebraska hospital.

Today in Google News was the report of Another child abandoned at Neb. hospital. The child was a 17-year-old boy. There was no details about why the boy was dumped by his parents.

This is the last paragraph of the article:

"If the drop-off is classified as a safe-haven case, he would be the 24th child left at Nebraska hospitals since the law took effect in July. Three have been from out of state." (Emphasis mine.)


I wonder if Nebraska will become the mecca for parents with problem children.

Technorati tags: children, families, parenting

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Yales' free online courses

This is pretty cool, Yale has made several of their courses free over the internet. I've listened to the Game Theory course a bit. It is well done.

Here are some of the courses:

Biomedical Engineering
Ancient Greek History
Game Theory
Financial Markets
The American Novel Since 1945
The Civil War and Reconstruction Era
France Since 1871

(Hat tip: Home-ed mailing list)

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Another beautiful picture from APOD - Sharpless 171

This beautiful picture is from Antonio Fernandez:

The Sharpless 171 is a star forming region about 3,000 light years away.

Technorati tags: , , Antonio Fernandez

Happy birthday to us

We have been blogging for three years now! We kicked off Why Homeschool on the 29th of October, 2005.

It is interesting how life changes over time. Originally we were going to blog as part of writing a book.

It has been fun, challenging, and educational to blog now for three years. It will be fun to see what the next three years bring.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Monday, October 27, 2008

Carnival of Homeschooling: 148 - The Halloween Edition

My youngest daughter says Halloween is her favorite holiday. Starting about June she would ask how much longer till Halloween. The big attraction to her is all the candy.

Halloween is famous for the phrase "Trick or Treat?" With this week's carnival we'll review some of the tricks and treats of homeschooling, along with a few scary items.

Carnival of Homeschooling


Tricks can be good, like a trick to adding up a set of numbers.

Amy has some great tips for How to Stock Your Home Library Cheaply at Kids Love Learning.

From Camp Creek Blog is a great lesson on Watercolor Prints. Check out the pictures.

Shannon of Song of My Heart demonstrates how they use a time line to teach history in Timeline Tips and a Freebie!

Linda has some great tips in How is Your Read Aloud Voice? from her blog Higher Up and Further In.

I wonder if every carnival had at least one post about socialization? This week’s first post is by Dana who asks What is it about socialization? on her blog Principled Discovery.

The Rebelious Pastor's Wife writes about The Plus Side of Homeschool Socialization.

Denise teaches combinatorics in Counting 101 at Let’s Play Math!


Most homeschooling parents seem to feel it is a treat to build strong bonds of love and support with their children.

Lisa shows the American Girl Lapbooks her daughters made at the House of Many Blessings.

Lynn is developing her little artists in Scrapbook For Artist Study at Eclectic Education.

One of the highlights of the week for our daughters is the trip to the library. Are you looking for good books? Kathy reviews School’s Out: Rachel Yoder, Always Trouble Somewhere Book One at Homeschool Reviews.

Speaking of reviews, Elena reviews the movie Akeelah and the Bee at My Domestic Church. It sounds like a good movie.

Homeschoolers are not passive, they go out and learn. At Living the Scientific Life is a great example of how active learning is more powerful in London Zoo, Part One.

The Life Without School Community Blog has some thoughts about Homeschooling with Little Ones in Tow, and asks for suggestions on What to do with the Littles?

Scary things

At times unforeseen events get in our way, like the death of a loved one. The Reluctant Homeschooler writes about finishing a major project in Finally - my IHIPs!

Blogging is a bit scary. I think video blogging is even more scary. Renae of Life Nurturing Education is brave and has Live from East Texas, It’s Me! as she shows us a video of where she blogs and tells us a little about herself.

Scary things - politics

This year is an election year. People have a lot of fears about canidates and issues. Jennifer explains how to get children educated about and interested in politics at Homeschooling and the election, on her blog Getting ahead.

In Obama speaks on homeschooling, Spunky writes that she tried to find out what is Obama’s position on homeschooling and fears that he is not supportive.

Alasandra’s Homeschool Blog Awards comes to the conclusion that Obama Supports Homeschooling.

Sprittibee asks How Government SHOULD Feel About Homeschooling, and then provides one politician’s answer.


Over at Dewey’s Treehouse Mama Squirrel is looking for some insight and asks us Explain this one to me (kids choosing fluff books). Do you have any tips?

More tricks

Here are a few more tricks to help you be a better homeschooler:

Lydia informs us about National Novel Writing Month at the Little Blue School.

Becca explains Why Life is always Fair from Inspiration for Mothers . com.

For adults: Skyler reminds us the need to Take Control of Your Continuing Education at Skyler Reep’s Blog.

Kris, one of the Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers has a Weekly Wrap-Up: Fall Break with tips, ideas and support on homeschooling.

Melissa shares her experience in using some services from the local public school in Speech or Other Services: Schools or Medical? from Here in the Bonny Glen.

And finally more treats

Barbara Frank Online has some Interesting Websites for Homeschooled Teens.

Public schools seem to be a universal constant in the last hundred years. Jay P. Greene's Blog shows a contrasting vision in Black Market Private Schooling in the Third World.

Shelly will be giving away a gift. Read the details in Mr. Skeleton and Osteology, at Homemade Homeschoolers.

In A View from Inside: A Homeschooled Teacher in a Public School Classroom Linda writes about her daughter’s experience as a teacher. (At The Joyful Journey.)

Rose answers the question of what to do When life gives you apples on her blog Learning at Home.

The Thinking Mother writes about some of the lessons she has learned over the years of homeschooling in A Change of Pace Planned for Week Ten.

The Head Mistress from The Common Room writes about the changes in how she has taught music over the years in Children and Music.

Lionden Landing wishes Happy Birthday Froggy - Jewish Style. You might drop by and also wish Froggy a Happy Birthday.

The NerdMom shows that homeschoolers tie learning in at many places in A Great Homeschooling Benefit: A More Creative Halloween! from the Nerd Family.

Those of you who have been following the carnival for a long time may recognize that we ran with a similar theme two years ago. My wife just couldn't resist using one the the graphics we used two years ago.

This is a picture of our middle daughter at 2 weeks of age. You can see how excited she was to go Tricker Treating.

Carnival of Homeschooling

If you have enjoyed this carnival, please spread the word. Please mention the carnival on your blog, and other appropriate places.

Go here for the archives of previous carnivals.

Next week the carnival will be held at Apollos Academy.

If you are interested in submitting a post for a future carnival, click here for information.

We thank everyone who has helped out. Thank you to all the participants in this carnival. And thanks to all those who help promote the Carnival of Homeschooling.

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Carnival of Homeschooling

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Reminder - send in a post for the next Carnival of Homeschooling

Originally the Carnival of Homeschooling next week was scheduled to be held at Roots, Shoots & Fruits. But Summer Minor had an uplanned moved pop up. I haven't been able to connect with her, so Janine and I may be hosting the carnival next week. In either case, there will be a carnival, so send in your entries.

As always, entries are due Monday evening at 6:00 PM Pacific Standard Time.

Here are the instructions for sending in a submission.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

Friday, October 24, 2008

Another reason we support Proposition 8

We had planned on not dwelling on Proposition 8, but this is just so over the top. So called tolerance only goes one way in California.

Stealing yard signs are the least of their tactics.

School holds surprise 'Gay' Day for kindergartners

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Some parents are shocked to find their children are learning to be homosexual allies and will participate in "Coming Out Day" at a public elementary school tomorrow – and they claim the school failed to notify parents.

One mother of a kindergartner who attends Faith Ringgold School of Art and Science, a K-8 charter school in Hayward, Calif., said she asked her 5-year-old daughter what she was learning at school.

The little girl replied, "We're learning to be allies."

The mother also said a Gay Straight Alliance club regularly meets in the kindergarten classroom during lunch.

According to a Pacific Justice Institute report, Faith Ringgold opted not to inform the parents of its pro-homosexual activities beforehand. The school is celebrating "Gay and Lesbian History Month" and is in the process of observing "Ally Week," a pro-"gay" occasion usually geared toward high school students.

The school is scheduled to host discussions about families and has posted fliers on school grounds portraying only homosexuals. According to the report, a "TransAction Gender-Bender Read-Aloud" will take place Nov. 20. Students will listen to traditional stories with "gay" or transgender twists, to include "Jane and the Beanstalk."

Some parents only recently noticed posters promoting the school's "Coming Out Day" tomorrow – celebrated 12 days after the national "Coming Out Day" usually observed on Oct. 11. When WND contacted the school to confirm the event, a female representative replied, "Yes, it is scheduled on our calendar."

When asked if the school made any efforts to inform parents, she refused to answer and said Hayward Unified School District would have to respond to additional questions. However, the district did not answer its phones or e-mails, and a voicemail recording would not take messages. "Coming Out Day" is not listed on the district's online school calendar.....

This is also one of the reasons my children don't go to public school.

Technorati tags: parenting, children, Prop 8, California, Marriage, election

Why worry about what other people are thinking about you?

I like this quote from Dan Galvin's Thought For The Day mailing list:

Don't worry over what other people are thinking about you. They're too busy worrying over what you are thinking about them.

Technorati tags: social, awareness

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Another beautiful picture from APOD - Young Suns of NGC 7129

This beautiful picture is from Astronomy Picture of the Day:

It is by Bob and Janice Fera of Fera Photography, who gave me permission to post it to my blog.

This is the Young Suns of NGC 7129.

Technorati tags: , , Bob Fera, Janice Fera

Check out Alltop

It is a challenge to get even the barest sample of the internet. There are millions of blogs. There are thousands of newspapers. This Amazon river tourent of information has prompted several solutions.

One of which is RSS (Really Simple Syndication) This allows tools like Google Reader to give you a quick view of your favorite blogs and/or web sites.

Another approach is to find web sites like Reddit or Digg which allow people to submit interesting links.

I also follow some blogs like Instapundit which cover a wide range of topics.

I have just added a new tool, Alltop. Alltop allows you to select topics and then they present blogs which cover the topic and the recent posts. For example here is the link on homeschooling.

It looks well thought out and useful.

Now maybe I'll be able to capture 0.0000002% (up from 0.0000001%) of all the information floating across the internet!

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Do your children need help with story ideas?

A friend sent me a link to the Scholastic Story Starters web page. Your children clicks on four buttons and the web site randomly generates ideas for stories. Here are a couple examples:

Describe the secret wish of a brainy venus flytrap who has to save the world.

Write a one-sentence postcard to a silly hen who lives on the Moon.

Describe a day in the life of a powerful avocado who collects stamps.

Pretty fun.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Good list of idea on how to learn a new skill or master a new topic

A friend sent me a link to: Climbing the Learning Curve: What to Do When You’re a n00b.

Dustin Wax has a great list of ideas on how to ramp up the learning curve. Suggestion six really caught my attention:

6. Write about it.
One of the best ways to learn is to write about a topic – even if nobody else ever reads it. It quickly becomes apparent what the blank spots are in your budding new understanding, driving you back to fill in those gaps. Take an hour or two to write a short description of what you’ve learned about your topic – who knows, it might even come in handy as a reference later on.


This is a good list to review for those of us who are still learning.

Technorati tags: parenting, children, education

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Please vote YES on California Prop 8

It is with great fear and trepidation that I start this post. Last week I decided I should write about Prop 8, but because of the high emotions on both sides I’ve been reluctant.

While Janine and I blog on a variety of topics, we’ve chosen to avoid politics most of the time. My experience has been that political discourse rarely changes people’s minds. Thomas Sowell makes the point in his book Conflict of Visions that most political beliefs stem from certain fundamental attitudes, and these are not addressed.

One of the reasons we blog is to make a difference in the world. Our hope is that through our blogging a few more people will decide to homeschool, and maybe a few homeschoolers will stick with it when the going gets rough. The result will be a few more children with a good education who grow up to make a difference in the world.

This post is aimed at a small audience, those who live in California and haven’t decided how they will vote on Prop 8. I hope to encourage you to vote YES on Prop 8, the Defense of Marriage initiative.


Eight years ago California faced the same basic issue in voting on Prop 22. The whole intent of Prop 22 was to define marriage for legal issues as being between a man and a woman. It was passed by a surprising 61%, this was a three to two margin. A large majority of Californians agreed that for the purposes of law marriage was what Americans had traditionally considered marriage, between one man and one woman.

Earlier this year four activist judges decided to ignore the will of the people and basically passed their own law saying women could marry women, and men could marry men.

The following are a few reasons why I urge you to vote
YES on Prop 8


Our country is built on laws. One of the fundamental beliefs is that we are governed in part by the will of the people. Through history the majority have used the word marriage to mean a very specific institution with an understood set of rights and responsibilities.

Vote YES on Prop 8 and tell activist judges they don’t get to make new laws. New laws should be passed by the legislators and by the people through the initiative process.

Legal Tradition

Over the decades hundreds, maybe thousands, of laws have been passed related to marriage. We have laws on the books on the rights of a spouse, how marriage is taught in the government schools, inheritance issues, and so on. By deciding by decree that the fundamental meaning of the word is being changed in a legal sense, the intent of all these laws are being twisted and abused.

Vote YES on Prop 8 to reaffirm the traditional meaning of the word marriage.

Free Speech

Language is key to the free expression of idea. We on both sides of this issue need language to have a discussion. When the 4 activist judges changed the legal definition of marriage, they in essence made the word "marriage" meaningless. Their true intent was to prevent the expression of ideas contrary to their own. Our Proposition 8 yard sign have been stolen 3 times. In fact, every sign on our street has been stolen at least once, if not twice. It has been reported that over 200,000 Proposition 8 signs have been stolen so far.

Vote YES on Prop 8 to protect free speech.

Respect of God's laws

God has said in both the Old and New Testaments that marriage was to be between a man and a woman.

Vote YES on Prop 8 to say you will follow God’s guidance and commandments.

If you want more information, or wish to support Prop 8, check out the Protect Marriage web site.

Ground rules for discussion

Because this is such a hot topic I’m expecting there may be a few comments. Comments are welcome as long as they are respectful and not too long.

(Now to go find some flame proof clothing.)

Technorati tags: parenting, children, Prop 8, California, Marriage, election

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Monday, October 20, 2008

Some of the joys of homeschooling

[Since, Henry asked for my input, I'm adding my comments are in brackets.-- Janine]

Through the summer we have tried a variety of approaches to unschooling and light homeschooling. We've had our daughters memorize poems, do science experiments, try some crafts, and so on. We also facilitate them reading tons of books.

Then each fall we return their focus back to an academic focus. Janine builds to-do lists each night using Homeschool Tracker. [I have a love/hate relationship with the software. The kids get a lot more done, but it takes me an hour a day to update assignments and add school records. I wouldn't bother, except now that we have a high schooler, I feel a bit more pressure to have a set study plan.] Our older two are very diligent about working through their lists. [They still need more reminders than I would like.] Our eight year old gets distracted, but we're happy with what she does, considering that she is eight. [Speak for yourself, she makes me nuts.]

Both Janine and I are mild type A personalities, or maybe B+. [Personally, I think I'm an A- personality] We're not super crazy about getting lots done, but we try to be effective and efficient in getting the important things accomplish. This sometimes translates to a heavy load. Sometimes our daughters tell us they are being worked too hard. [I don't really believe them. When I was a kid, we walked to school in the snow, uphill both ways.]

We've been homeschooling this fall two months. The freshness of the bloom has worn off. We're seeing the months ahead, and it is a bit daunting, more for Janine than for me, since I escape off to work.

It helps us to remember some of the joys of homeschooling. Here are a few:

1) Being able to have our daughters work less hours than their friends in school who spends hours at school and then hours at home, but much of it is wasted time.

2) Being able to study the scriptures with our daughters.

3) Catching our oldest daughter giving our second daughter the birds and the bees talk using a Children's Encyclopedia as her guide. (We told her to check with us before she ever did that again.)

4) Going on vacations in the fall, when the lines are so, so much shorter.

5) Being much more connected as a family.

I asked my daughters what they found joyful about homeschooling and her are some of their replies:

They like.....

1) Choosing what they study

2) Going their own pace

3) Playing when they are done with their school work and not having to sit in class

4) Spending time with their sisters

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

One of the big problems in our world

I liked this thought from A.Word.A.Day:

Men build too many walls and not enough bridges.
-Isaac Newton, philosopher and mathematician (1642-1727)

This is true within families, between neighbors, in politics, and across the world.

Reach out and build a bridge today.

Technorati tags: walls, bridges

Are you trying to learn Spanish?

An important part of learning a language is mastering the vocabulary. It can be overwhelming to try and learn thousands of words. The answer is to do it in small bites. has a Spanish Word of the Day. You can check their web site or sign up for daily emails.

Technorati tags: Spanish

The amazing dolphin bubble rings

A friend sent me:

The attached video is of dolphins playing with silver colored rings, which they have the ability to make under water to play with. It isn't known how they learn this, or if it's an inbred ability.

As if by magic the dolphin does a quick flip of its head and a silver ring appears in front of its pointed beak. The ring is a solid, donut shaped bubble about 2-ft across, yet it doesn't rise to the surface of the water! It stands upright in the water like a magic doorway to an unseen dimension.

The dolphin then pulls a small silver donut from the larger one. Looking at the twisting ring for one last time a bite is taken from it, causing the small ring to collapse into a thousands of tiny bubbles which head upward towards the water's surface. After a few moments the dolphin creates another ring to play with. There also seems to be a separate mechanism for producing small rings, which a dolphin can accomplish by a quick flip of its head.

An explanation of how dolphins make these silver rings is that they are 'air-core vortex rings'. Invisible, spinning vortices in the water are generated from the tip of a dolphin's dorsal fin when it is moving rapidly and turning. When dolphins break the line, the ends are drawn together into a closed ring. The higher velocity fluid around the core of the vortex is at a lower pressure than the fluid circulating farther away. Air is injected into the rings via bubbles released from the dolphin's blowhole. The energy of the water vortex is enough to keep the bubbles from rising for a reasonably few seconds of play time.


It is a pretty amazing video:

Technorati tags: dolphin, bubble rings

Are you trying to learn a new language?

Google has another cool feature! They'll display a translated version of a web page, for example here is Why Homeschool: in Spanish, in German, in Russian and even in Chinese.

The cool thing is as you move the mouse over the screen they'll give the original text.

This is great for building up vocabulary. If you were learning a new language, say Hebrew, you could read a favorite story that you know well, like The Count of Monte Cristo, in Hebrew.

Technorati tags: Google, translate

Friday, October 17, 2008

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Natalie Criss was interviewed about homeschooling

Natalie Criss did a great job on a radio talk show about homeschooling. Go to Relatively Speaking and click on "29 September 2008 - Homeschooling."

(Hat tip: The Informed Parent)

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

A call for 2008 Homeschool Blog Award Nominations

Do you have some favorite homeschool blogs? Consider nominating them for the 2008 Homeschool Blog Awards. Check the link for the rules. Entries are due by October 24th.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Parkinson's law and public schools

One of the best summaries of the problems with bureaucracies is Parkinson’s Law:

"Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion."

This also applies to organizations. (If you haven't read the book, check out my review.)

A recent article on the LAUSD is a classic exampple of this problem. Over six years the number of students in the Los Angeles School District declined. The school district laid off 500 teachers. But of course they needed more administrators. The size of the administration grew by 20%.

Parkinson says bureaucracies grow about 6% a year, year after year. The Catholic private schools have about one administrator per twenty teachers. I think I heard that government schools have one administrator per two teachers.

(Hat tip: Friends of Dave)

Technorati tags: children, government schools, public school, public education, education

A reason to be thoughtful about who you vote for this November

I like this quote from Dan Galvin's Thought For The Day mailing list:

We may not imagine how our lives could be more frustrating and complex-but Congress can.
Cullen Hightower

Technorati tags: politics, Congress

This is good news: Googling Is Good For Your Brain

Google News has some promising news - Googling Is Good For Your Brain!

Even though reading is said to help our brain, the UCLA study revealed that searching the Web could be more beneficial for our brains, especially if you for experienced Web users. For newcomers, the brain activity of searching the Web is similar to searching the Web.

So surfing the web is good for your brain!

Technorati tags: Brain, Web

The Carnival of Family Life is up

This week's Carnival of Family Life is up at On the Horizon.

If you would like to submit a blog post to the next Carnival of Family Life, go here.

Technorati tags: , ,

Health news: To avoid Alzheimer's - eat less!

I saw this on Google News this morning: Want to prevent Alzheimer’s disease? Eat less!

Want to prevent brain diseases like Alzheimer's disease or simply slow age-related mental decline? Forget about taking B vitamins like B6, B12 and folate, according to one study. Instead reduce your intake of calories, according to another study.

The United States has a large problem with overeating. Our society is wealthy and it is easy to have lots of food. I have heard about various problems that can come from a result of being overweight, problems like diabetes and heart disease. I had not realized that too much food could be bad for your brain.

Yet another reason to homeschool: you can teach your children to eat healthy foods, and healthy amounts.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

How to explain the current US tax system to your current

Volumes and volumes of tax code will glaze over the eyes of adults. Just a few paragraphs will bore any child. So how do you explain the current United States tax system to your children? Try using the story below. A friend sent me a link.

Suppose that every day, the same ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to $100. If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this:

The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
The fifth would pay $1.
The sixth would pay $3.
The seventh would pay $7.
The eighth would pay $12.
The ninth would pay $18.

The tenth man (the richest) would pay $59.
So, that's what they decided to do.

The ten men drank in the bar every day and seemed quite happy with the arrangement, until one day, the owner threw them a curve. 'Since you are all such good customers,' he said, 'I'm going to reduce the cost of your daily beer by $20.' Drinks for the ten now cost just $80.

The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes so the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free. But what about the other six men - the paying customers? How could they divide the $20 windfall so that everyone would get his 'fair share?' They realized that $20 divided by six is $3.33. But if they subtracted that from everybody's share, then the fifth man and the sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer. So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fair to reduce each man's bill by roughly the same amount, and he proceeded to work out the amounts each should pay.

And so:

The fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (100% savings).
The sixth now paid $2 instead of $3 (33%savings).
The seventh now pay $5 instead of $7 (28%savings).
The eighth now paid $9 instead of $12 (25% savings).
The ninth now paid $14 instead of $18 (22% savings).
The tenth now paid $49 instead of $59 (16% saving s).

Each of the six was better off than before. And the first four continued to drink for free. But once outside the restaurant, the men began to compare their savings.

'I only got a dollar out of the $20,' declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man, 'but he got $10'.

'Yeah, that's right, exclaimed the fifth man. 'I only saved a dollar, too. It's unfair that he got ten times more than I got'

'That's true' shouted the seventh man. 'Why should he get $10 back when I got only two? The wealthy get all the breaks!'

'Wait a minute,' yelled the first four men in unison. 'We didn't get anything at all. The system exploits the poor!'

The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.

The next night the tenth man didn't show up for drinks so the nine sat down and had beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important - they didn't have enough money between all of them for even half of the bill!

And that, ladies and gentlemen, journalists and college professors, is how our tax system works. The people who pay the highest taxes get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy, and they just may not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

The Carnival of Homeschooling is up - The Missing Day edition

This week's Carnival of Homeschooling is up at Did you know that in 1582 there wasn't an October 14th? Gary celebrates October 14th as the "missing day."

Carnival of Homeschooling

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

Monday, October 13, 2008

Reminder - send in an entry to the Carnival of Homeschooling

As the organizer of the Carnival of Homeschooling each week I try to encourage bloggers to submit entries. I've wondered which helps generate more entries, posting a reminder on the day entries are due, or posting a couple days before. Anyone have any thoughts?

Gary of Homeschool Buzz will be hosting the next Carnival of Homeschooling.

As always, entries are due Monday evening at 6:00 PM Pacific Standard Time. That means you have less than eleven hours to send in your post.

Here are the instructions for sending in a submission.

Carnival of Homeschooling

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education,

Another study on the power of homeschooling

The Princess Mom reports on A Review of the Homeschooling Literature. There were several good lines. Here are a few:

"In other words, the degree of government regulation has no significant effect on the academic performance of home schooled children."

"For younger students, this is a one year lead. By the time home school students are in 8th grade, they are four years ahead of their public/private school counterparts."

The whole post is worth reading.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

How are you going to spend today?

I like this thought from A.Word.A.Day:

"One should count each day a separate life."
Lucius Annaeus Seneca, philosopher (BCE 3-65 CE)

It reminds me of another good quote:

"Millions long for immortality who do not know what to do with themselves on a rainy Sunday afternoon."
Susan Ertz

Each time I post a quote I like to track down some information about the peson. Lucius Annaeus Seneca has many famous quotes. Here are a few good ones:

"As long as you live, keep learning how to live."

"Consider, when you are enraged at any one, what you would probably think if he should die during the dispute."

"For greed all nature is too little."

"For many men, the acquisition of wealth does not end their troubles, it only changes them."

"It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult."

"Life's like a play: it's not the length, but the excellence of the acting that matters."

"Our plans miscarry because they have no aim. When a man does not know what harbor he is making for, no wind is the right wind."

"Shame may restrain what law does not prohibit."

"So live with men as if God saw you and speak to God, as if men heard you."

Technorati tags: life, immortality, Lucius Seneca, Susan Ertz

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Great resource for learning history

A good friend sent me a link to a great web site for learning history: EyeWitness to

I've already spent a half hour reading various accounts.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

It's that time of year again.

If you live in California and are an independent homeschooler, it is time to file your Private School Affidavit, also know as an R4. It is recommended that you file between October 1 and October 15th, though you can begin homeschooling at anytime during the year and file then.

I use the phrase "independent" homeschooler to describe those who don't utilize independent study programs through the public school, umbrella programs with private schools or accredited distance learning programs. In these cases, you don't need to file an R4.

If you have any questions, A to Z Home's Cool Homeschooling is a good resource.

When I filed just a few minutes ago, I was the 62562 "school" to file. Last year, I was number 46761. Two years ago, I filed on October 12th and was number 36106. Now, all these "schools" are not homeschools, but I can definitely see an upward trend.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Great experiement for children - building the five minute rocket

From Popular Science: The 5-Minute Rocket.

(Hat tip: Instapundit)

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

One of the benefits of having a father in a child's life - higher IQ

The Telegraph reports that Children who spend time with their fathers have a higher IQ:

Strong fatherly involvement in their early life can also improve a child's future career prospects, the research shows.
Academics at the University of Newcastle, who carried out the study, also found that men tended to pay more attention to their sons than their daughters.
The researchers warned that it was not enough for parents to live together, but that a father should be actively involved in a child's life to benefit their development.
The study looked at more than 11,000 British men and women, born in 1958.


It was surprising to read that the difference were still there even at age 42. I did a little Google searching, but I couldn't find exactly what the difference was.

(Hat tip: Homeschooled twins)

Technorati tags: parenting, children

Some recent homeschooling carnivals

I think it is wonderful there are so many blog carnivals on homeschooling. I wonder if we'll ever get up to a dozen! Here are a few recent editions:

From up north is the 25th Canadian Home Educators Blog Carnival.

Shez hosts number 10 of the Carnival of Cool Homeschoolers.

And A Dusty Frame has the latest Charlotte Mason Blog Carnival.

Technorati tags: homeschooling, homeschool, home school, home education, parenting, children, education

Another beautiful picture from APOD - The Triangulum Galaxy

This is beautiful picture is from Astronomy Picture of the Day:

It is by Paul Mortfield and Stefano Cancelli, who gave me permission to post it to my blog.

Pictures like this boggle my mind a bit. The Triangulum Galaxy is a small galaxy with probably something like only ten billion stars.