Monday, September 19, 2016

Homeschooling 2016/2017

During my Dear Daughters (DD) last semester of the 2015/2016 school year  DD was homeschooled.  I developed her curriculum using textbooks I found online and she went to two computer classes at Indian Rocks Christian School.  This worked well for us, especially since we concentrated on her worst subject, mathematics.

This year I researched and found a Florida accredited school that had virtual classes via Apex Learning and would accept her homeschool transcripts.  If you do this with your students it is very important to develop a strong curriculum and keep a detailed portfolio. Champion Preparatory Academy (CPA) was highly rated through the Florida Parent Educators Association.

DD is also attending a Fine Art class at Indian Rocks Christian School.  Their art teacher is top notch and teaches a combination of fine art and humanities.

Apex is new to us, so we are dealing with a learning curve, but things have settled down now that DD has used the program for several weeks.  One thing I don't like about Apex is that, while their lessons are easily understood, their test problems are much more complex than the lessons and the practice problems given to the students.

Since DD is now attending two Florida accredited schools, she does not need to be registered with our county school board homeschool office.  CPA will ensure that she receives full credit for her learning and provide her with legal transcripts.

I hear people talking about their children completing their homeschool tasks in a couple of hours.  This may be true of kindergarten, but if your older child (especially middle and high school age) is not spending eight hours a day on their lessons, then you are short changing them.  Remember we are preparing our children for college (university), careers and to be responsible adults.

If you have any questions about homeschooling please feel free to ask.

God bless,

Friday, September 9, 2016

Good Reads: A Killer's Guide to Good Works

A Killer's Guide to Good Works (A Val Cameron Mystery #2)A Killer's Guide to Good Works by Shelley Costa
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A Killers Guide to Good Works is the second book in the Val Cameron Mystery series. It is a well written and professionally edited full length novel.

The plot was very good; fast paced and detailed. Shelley Costa is an accomplished author and at times writes so beautifully that I would read a section, stop, exhale and relive her words. After reading the prologue I found myself grinning and rubbing my hands together at the thought that I had a whole book of her writing before me.

So if I enjoyed the book so much why did I only rate it as four stars? Because it read like a first book. None of the secondary characters from the first book were in this one. Val's love interest has flown off into the sunset and only rates a couple of sentences. It was disconcerting. I hope this isn't one of those series where the main character has a new man in each book. I enjoy watching characters' relationships grow over time.

I enjoyed A Killers Guide to Good Works and look forward to reading future books in the series.

ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley.

*Sex and violence is not graphic in this novel.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Times of Troubles

They say that trouble comes in threes.  Well, for me trouble came in a three month block.  Pretty much anything that could go wrong did.  I am happy to move into September and, I say this prayerfully, a time of less stress.

As you know from my earlier posts on dealing with contractors that I am pretty well versed on what to look for in a contractor.  But there are times when everything checks out, but it all goes bad despite your carefulness.  In this case my roofing contractor, after I signed the contract and they obtained the permits, let four months go by before they started work.  The day I was about to call my lawyer the roofers showed up to start the job.

Besides the delay, the office staff were the worst communicators.  I was spoken to in a rude, condescending way and was often told untruths.  The actual roofing crews were professional and did very good work.  Such a dichotomy!  The good news is that the roof was finished and passed inspection before Hurricane Hermine blew past us.

The color of shingles we chose.

Add to the above car problems, getting my daughter set up to take classes at three schools, other home breakdowns and repairs, a trip canceled due to airline employee incompetence, and a plethora of little problems; I was frazzled.  I'm looking forward to living life for a few weeks without the drama. 

I have to ask, "What happened to customer service?"  I remember my grandparents, then my parents talking about how much easier life was during their youth.  Now I am doing the same thing.  We used to choose our own doctors and got our prescriptions filled for a reasonable price at the corner Rexall drug store.  The one where the owners were the pharmacist and the checkout lady.  I could go on and on.  I find myself resenting "progress" that doesn't make my life easier, but rather makes it more difficult.

Okay, I'm done kvetching.  I'm laying these thoughts in God's hands.  Moving forward. Moving forward.

God bless,