Welcome to Home Shalom!

Welcome to Home Shalom and Shalom Farm. We pray your visit here be blessed. We are learning to walk in the Ways (Torah) of our Father YHWH and follow Y'shua, His Messiah until He returns to "set things straight". We call it a "Messi-Life". Our walk is neither tidy nor perfect, but it is filled with passion, devotion and desire to serve our King. We are learning to be humble servants, and to be good stewards of the things that He has entrusted to us: His Word, our marriage, our children, our family, our community, our health, and our farm. Hitch your horse and stay a while--our door is always open!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Another School Year Ends


We have just closed this school year with our evaluator. It is such a good time to reflect on what a great year we have had and start implementing new plans for the coming year.

We home school year round, we have chosen a lifestyle of learning. There are so many advantages to doing it this way. We all love it. It allows us freedom through the year as we need it, without having to worry about "catching up" because we took a trip or something.

Pennsylvania is said to be a state that requires the most accountability and it's checks and balances, but I have found it to be very easy to manage. I've got a great evaluator and an easy homemade system for keeping track of things, so I have no complaints. :-)

H took the mandatory 3rd grade tests last year and she really likes it, so did I. Even though you can;t measure the things we think are most important in our home education by these tests, many basic skills can be measured and I really like that outside accountability. So we have chosen to take them every year if we can. E took one this year for 2nd grade, and H took one for 4th. H tested low last year in Math (2nd Grade), and that really helped me identify that we needed to pay closer attention in that area. This year she just missed the 7th grade level by one hash mark! It was good to see the progress measured for our efforts through out the year. They both tested above grade level in everything, so it helps me know what we are doing is working. It can be a daunting responsibility to carry sometimes.

Our biggest change in the new year is that we are stopping piano lessons this semester with our teacher. It was tough (really tough), but we needed too - at least for this season, then we will assess our progress in August and see if we did OK on our own. We are continuing to learn at home, especially strengthening our music reading skills.

We lighten up in some areas and increase in other when the season change, it just feel natural that way. Of course of Physical activity increases as we spend as much time as possible outside. We trade bread making (And eating),baking and video courses for gardening and bike riding and books under a trees. We trade reading about science to more specimen collecting, research, and experiments. We trade reading about History for witnessing History on field trips and hands-on activities. Less book reports and more writing in journal and nature notebooks. We trade Crockpot meals and soups for meals with more fresh raw foods and things with grill marks on them (YUM!) and soon will be trading the kids' 6-8 o'clock bed times for 7-10 or so as the days get longer. We trade snuggling under blankets together for sitting by a campfire together. It's a beautiful thing.

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