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Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years

Chaotic Bliss Homeschooling

Misc.
Focus on Food
Category: Misc.
Tags: food food science farm to table agriculture growing corn types of sandwiches

Farm to Fork: Even if your kids understand that the food we eat does not originate at the supermarket, you may still want to check out the Tesco Eat Happy Project. It focuses on teaching kids about where food comes from, how it’s made, and how to prepare it in nutritious and delicious ways. The site provides access to such free resources as:

  • virtual field trips: Each focuses on a particular food, like salmon, or tea. These are live trips that can be accessed through Google+ Hangouts. (Two upcoming trips scheduled this month will feature peppers and tomatoes). You can also view archived videos, and download associated information sheets (eg. life cycle of a salmon; history of tea infographic).
  • lesson plans and activities: You can look for ones that go with a particular field trip, or search by age, subject, or food group.
  • yummy recipes: There are a wide variety of ideas here that can be filtered by age and food group.

Cornucopia: Learn about the domestication of maize, and its development into a food and fuel at WeedToWonder.org. There’s comprehensive information here, including how new varieties of corn were produced, and the rise of corn genetics, leading to further transformation of this and other key plants. Text is presented in easily navigated chapters, with associated videos and interactives. In addition, there are a couple of labs you can do, one involving the study of inherited traits, the other, an investigation of genotype and phenotype, both using corn.

Explore Food: The Science of Cooking features information, activities, webcasts and interactives on a variety of food topics, including how different candies are made; breads of the world; journey through an organic egg farm; fascinating pickle facts; spice map, and more.

Design a Glog about Sandwiches: For this project, from FamilyConsumersicences.com, choose a type of sandwich to research, and present such facts as the history of a particular sandwich, food groups it represents, recipe, etc. Scroll down to the bottom of the page and you will find the free downloads for this project, including project instructions, a nice powerpoint describing types of sandwiches, and a fill-in-the-blank note sheet to go with the PowerPoint.

Free Books About Food

Feeding a Growing Population: This online science module from Concord Consortium features data analysis activities exploring how we use our land and soil, climate and crop growth, improving soil quality, and improving agricultural methods.

(Click pic for full infographic on food idioms).



Teen Volunteering
Category: Misc.
Tags: youth volunteer community service ideas volunteer programs volunteer ideas volunteer teenagers

Serving Others

The youth choir my two teenage daughters participate in take "tours" around the country, where they sing at various churches, and do volunteer work and community service projects. This year, the group of about 70 kids are in the NJ/NYC area. Through the Elijah's Promise organization, they helped do some clean-out and painting in a building damaged during Hurricane Sandy. They will also be working with the Salvation Army, and will visit a children's home. The youth choir also serves locally, doing things like serving meals at soup kitchens, collecting and delivering donations to children's and women's shelters, and visiting the elderly at nursing homes. These types of experiences not only give teens an opportunity to serve in their communities, but can help them lose the "I - Me - Mine" mentality they so often exhibit (at least for a time), and get them thinking about others.

Developing Interests

Other volunteer opportunities give teens a taste of what a particular job or field of interest is like. Some places my girls have volunteered include: 

  • the local library
  • the Humane Society (cat cuddling)
  • VBS (oh, the drama!)
  • our homeschool co-op (teachers or assistants)
  • local public access station (where my daughter learned video production)

Other opportunities include: local science centers and museums, parks and recreation organizations, genealogical societies, gardening groups -- you can likely find a place to volunteer for any interest your child may have.

New York in June

Of course, there always has to be time made for fun. The kids are also enjoying the sights and sounds of NYC.

Daylight Saving Time Explained
Category: Misc.
Tags: daylight saving time daylight savings when is daylight savings time daylight saving 2013 time zones daylight savings 2013

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