Famous Homeschoolers…

Most people are unaware of how many world leaders, celebrities and world changers – not to forget scholars – who were homeschooled for various reasons. Many were discarded by mainstream and even private schools!

(Thanks to Wikipedia,

 

  • Alexander Hamilton – 1st secretary of the treasury of the US
  • Leonardo da Vinci inventor, artist
  • George Washington – 1st president of the US
  • John & Abigail Adams – 2nd president of the US and his wife
  • Thomas Jefferson – 3rd president of the US
  • James Madison – 4th president of the US
  • John Quincy Adams – 6th president of the US
  • Andrew Jackson – 7th president of the US
  • William Henry Harrison – 9th president of the US
  • John Tyler – 10th president of the US
  • James Garfield – 20th president of the US
  • Grover Cleveland – 22nd and 24th president of the US
  • Theodore Roosevelt – 26th President of the US
  • Woodrow Wilson – 28th President of the US
  • Franklin D Roosevelt – 32nd President of the US
  • Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart – composer
  • Florence Nightingale – founder of modern nursing
  • Louisa May Alcott – novelist
  • Alexander Graham Bell – inventor
  • Lewis Caroll – mathematician, logician, and author
  • Thomas Edison – inventor
  • Laura Ingalls Wilder – author of the Little House series of children’s novels
  • Virginia Woolf – novelist and a central figure in the influential Bloomsbury Group of intellectuals
  • Erwin Schrödinger – Nobel prize-winning physicist, homeschooled until age 10
  • J R R Tolkien – English writer, poet, philologist, and university professor
  • Francis Collins – physician-geneticist, discovered a number of disease genes, and led the Human Genome Project
  • Julian Assange – founder of WikiLeaks
  • Lindsay Lohan – actress
  • Hilary Duff – actor
  • Jonas Brothers – musicians, actors
  • Hayden Panettiere – actress
  • Emma Watson – actress and model
  • Demi Lovato – actress and singer
  • Miranda Cosgrove – actress, singer
  • Alan Alda – actor
  • Agatha Christie – author
  • Abraham Lincoln – 16th president US
  • CS Lewis – author
  • Yehudi Menuhin – violinist
  • Beatrix Potter – author
  • Joseph Priestley – scientist, theologian
  • Venus & Serena Williams – athletes
  • Kristen Stewart – actor
  • Condoleza Rice – National security advisor/Secretary of state US
  • Ryan Gosling – actor
  • Justin Timberlake – singer
  • Claude Monet – artist
  • Wright Brothers – pioneers/inventors
  • Charles Dickens – author
  • Robert Frost – author
  • Louis Armstrong – musician, singer
  • Whoopi Goldberg – actress
  • Hanson Brothers – musicians, singers
  • Charlie Chaplin – actor
  • Benjamin Franklin – inventor, scientist, author
  • Jennifer Love Hewitt – actress
  • Winston Churchill – UK Prime Minister
  • Albert Einstein – scientist
  • Joan of Arc – revolutionary, saint

We can’t help but feel in good company here. The sky is the limit!

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Resources for Middle and High School

There is so much information available today. Did you know some of the most amazing human beings and leaders were homeschooled? This was one of the first things we researched when we began homeschooling – because we wanted to know we really were in good company. And many of the best, only had books to learn from – many of their parents were not even formally educated. Today – despite being avid readers and book collectors, we are grateful for what the internet provides.

By Year 7, Aixa had already begun basic free university courses. And as soon as Anais returned to homeschooling, an entire new world opened, with courses we couldn’t hope to begin until after Year 12! Below are some of our favourites, but please know it is only the tip of the iceberg. We suggest you do an online search for FREE university courses – regardless of whether you finished high school or not.

Many of our friends want to homeschool but their parents are worried about what others tell them. We find it odd that people who have no experience in it, have the most to say. If you want to know, ask another parent who has gone through it. Or ask a child who does it. If you have learning difficulties, are being bullied or you feel you are being held back, seriously – please ask your parents to look into it.

While we still buy second hand text books for our year or the one above us just so we can ensure we are ‘sticking to it’ we search outside the box for our courses at the beginning of each year, so that we begin the new school year doing a lot of reading and text book work – by the 3rd or 4th week we are in the swing of things; building an ever-increasing repertoire which is a mish-mash of knowledge throughout history and from around the world.

One of the major issues we discuss at home is the lack, in mainstream, of teaching LIFE skills. What about money management? Confidence? Communication? Personal development? Social skills? Relationships? Conflict resolution? There is so much emphasis on sex education, yet nothing on HOW to treat people, whether friends or personal relationships. No wonder so many marriages fail! And in the future – what about parenting?

Or what career to choose? So little is made of these things and if our parents were not so successful at these choices, who can teach us if we don’t know where to look? Also, what if our parents have  We make a point of studying important social topics as much as we study core topics. As a result, we have been able to socialise and communicate with people of all ages with confidence and ease – and we both have multiple plans for our future.

Some of the courses are free, while others do attract a fee, usually discounted. You are even able to get full, accredited degrees online! There are many teens out there who have their first degree at 18 years of age.

Setting Up –

Bev Paine – resources and guidelines

Harding Family – Degrees by age 15?

Study skills – smarter learning

Brain Pop learning tools

Get educated for free

Western Australian Curriculum (You can find your particular options according to your region/state/nation)

Life Skills – 

Personal Development

Plan your career path

Effective altruism

Eco Voice

Creating confidence

Reading/Research/English/Grammar – 

Amazing eBook resource

Massive resources and educational links

Free read

Complete William Shakespeare

Art – 

Colour Theory for Artists/Designers

Incredible art lessons

Veterinary Studies – Animal Husbandry – 

Comparative animal behaviour

Applied animal behaviour

Maths –

Basic maths – Years 7 – 12

Math Goodies – clear guidance/explanations

Engineering –

What is a Keppe Motor?

Scratch IT

Sport/Phys Ed –

Fitness Training Principles & Methods

Science –

How stuff works – answers

Chem4Kids

Cosmos4Kids

Amazing Science

Easy Fun Science Experiments

Language –

Hieroglyphics

Digital dialects

Youth

Ted Talks for families

Ted Talks for homeschool success

Online degrees Ted Talks

Encouraging our youth Ted Talks

Xiuhtezcatl Martinez – One of the most inspiring Homeschooled youths of our time

As mentioned this is not all that is available but via the links you will open a world of education and limitless options. If you would like us to add anything else that we may have forgotten please let us know!

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Starting Out – for Toddlers & Small Kids…

While we didn’t officially do homeschooling in the early years, Mum began each of us on a home-made program early on, so that by the time we started Kindy, we already knew how to spell our name, do the alphabet and numbers, identify colours, shapes and a few other general things.

What upset us at the time – and made Mum angry – was that we were then told we had to unlearn and re-learn it ‘properly’. One of our sister’s friends was reading the daily newspaper by Pre-School and she was actually banned from doing this, only to be taught all over again. It is no surprise that by senior high, her Mum once again took her out of mainstream school. Like with our older sisters, it was obvious that her educational level was going backwards instead of forwards, as she got older.

We have a 3-year-old niece and our sister has already started, by building a fun educational corner in their house, and providing educational shows to watch on TV. She is already not a fan of silly baby shows that seem to teach them how to act like babies rather than use their intellect to learn.

When she comes to stay with us, she shows how far ahead she is of her peers. Mum recently set up a few easy projects and we couldn’t help but giggle when she kept saying, “Silly Nana. That’s easy!” How many 3-year-olds can say the alphabet, count not just forward but backward, can identify just about any dinosaur and other animal put in front of them? And she not only sings entire songs but keeps perfect time. She does not receive many regular or electronic toys – even her first toys were educational and musical. We already have jam sessions!

And it is all fun. No drills. Just fun.

So, what have we found that we know we would enjoy? Mum has helped us put this together because we have been watching our sister set up for our niece. It can be done at home, as our niece has already proven. There is no reason to feel inadequate because parents can learn along with their kids. And it’s all free.

English – 

Letters and sounds (phonics) resources

Phonics play – printouts, games & resources

Reading –

Read Eggs – learn to read

Reading Rockets – young readers

Read-Write-Think

Illustrated Classics

Storytime

International children’s library

Spelling – 

Spelling City – vocabulary builder

Society & Environmental – 

Kids Geo – Our earth – geography & geology

All Core subjects –

Sparklebox – thousands of resources

Chem4Kids

Cosmos4Kids

Special education/needs –

Help Kidz Learn

Language –

10 Free Sites

Games for learning language

How-To for Parents –

Home School Australia – Bev Paine resources

Art – 

DIY glitter slime

Incredible Art – K – 12

These are the foundations – we will add more as we find them. Getting the kids to see education as fun, not a chore, will help prepare them to allow them to form anything into an educational game. We included language because we have always been taught that as children learn faster than adults. getting a child into a foreign language early is a privilege and will give them a head start.

From these links you can build the basis of all subjects, whether core or elective. There are so many networks now and Facebook has many social groups for homeschooling. You may want to do what we have done; find a homeschool group in your area so your kids can take part in social activities from an early age rather than just either mainstream playgroups or daycare (things our own Mum has not been a huge fan of for us).

© Aixa & Anais Kenzig 2016

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Build Your Own Path

Image result for future path for a child

Kids go into the system of fostering usually because they go through either or all of a complex range of sad issues; they had no mentally stable parent, parents in jail, no parents at all or were legally taken away from their guardians for whatever reason (some unfounded).

Some foster children believe that no matter the situation at home, that was where they were most safe. Because they knew where they would wake up in the morning and fall asleep at night; not worried that social workers would take them away.

Unfortunately, this is all taken away when you hear that doorbell ring for the last time. You open that door and see a person standing there in a suit, telling you that it would be alright and that they would make sure that you would be in a good home. Sadly, these people usually had no idea what the house was like, just reading the report was good enough for them.

For other kids it is a blessing, knowing that someone would come and take them to a new “safe” house. This is often the best feeling (at the time) to some of these kids knowing that they would be taken from whatever madness was happening where they lived; knowing that they wouldn’t be put through this again.

A foster life can be likened to a game popular with many kids in this situation – hopscotch. Because every time they were sent to a new house, they would jump onto another brick. Some were lucky to have only needed to have jumped once. Others would keep playing the game, even if it was no longer fun; they had no choice. Some kids got scared and jumped off their bricks, out of the game; others were brave and stayed. Believing they had something in the future for them. Just patiently waiting.

Some kids would have 1 or 2 ‘bricks’ to jump across while others had 7 or 8 (or more) bricks. These kids could never called these houses actual “homes”, but as soon as they were close to the realization that this might be their home, they were moved. The more bricks they jumped across, the more distant the end seemed to be; leaving them less trusting of anyone, and this made it hard for them to stay in one house.

Some kids were fortunate enough to reach that last brick and find their everlasting family, while others just grew too old to play the game. And were alone in the world. We all need someone whether we know it or not; it’s human nature to have longed for the warmth of a family or the warmth of someone else’s arms. These are two of the richest things out there. We all need them.

If you have to, build your own path with the bricks you played on. Allow for people to see that foster kids are more than a sob story. Show them that you can actually create something for yourself. So, get up and…

Build. Your. Own. Path.

© Anais Kenzig 2016

Hi!

Hi, it’s Aixa & Anais, the Kenzig twins. We returned to homeschooling in 2015/16 respectively.

We both had very different reasons (unlike our older sisters, thankfully bullying was not part of the reason). One of us (Aixa) is a bit of a self-motivator and works far better alone than in a classroom setting. The other (Anais) is a social butterfly but felt restricted – even held back – especially in the stronger subjects.

With Mum’s guidance and encouragement, we began unschooling – or unfocusing on what we did not really see as beneficial; while re-routing just how we learn. Sometimes it feels like we are not even working; other times it feels like we are university students.

One thing we have noticed is that a large number of our peers wish they could homeschool. Yet due to many reasons – often due to nothing more than misconceptions – they are not permitted. Some believe it is just an easy life and that they could spend every day at the beach. Homeschooling – even unschooling – is nothing like this; it’s about making everything educational, but in a fun, easy-to-understand way.

Others want to homeschool but don’t feel confident. Don’t worry – Mum made this mistake with our eldest sister. You don’t need a Masters in education to homeschool – not in this era of information! Anyway, we hope you enjoy our page. This is as much a diary for us as we hope it will be an inspiration for you.

  • If you would like to copy, share or borrow any of our work, please just ask. It is copyrighted but plagiarism is still plagiarism – even in a homeschooling environment.