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  Christian Home School Program Blogs

Praising the Lord for Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Monday, 20 July 2009 10:10

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Do you ever wake up and just say, “Thank you, God!” If you don’t, you should. Wake up every morning with a smile and realize it’s a gift! Today, let’s do some fun activities to celebrate the Lord!

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschool Students
Kidz Under Construction
: Includes songs, action rhymes, coloring pages, and games for 3-8 year olds.

Elementary Homeschool Students
Kids 4 Truth
: Answers questions such as “Who is God?” Uses multimedia presentations.

Big Idea Fun: Includes Shockwave games, online greetings, coloring pages, puzzles, and wallpaper with Veggie Tales characters.

Middle School Homeschool Students
Anointed Youth
: Learn more about Jesus Christ! Includes bulletin board, members-area, and newsletter.

High School Homeschool Students
Sword and Spirit
: Deals with science, current events, culture, theology, pro-life issues, other religions, and ethics. Articles, presentations, humor, games, and links.

“Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.'” -Matthew 19:13-15

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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Handel’s Messiah: a Christmas Study

Thursday, 18 December 2008 14:40

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-by Mimi Rothschild

Almost all of us could sing (or at least holler) a line or two from the “Hallelujah Chorus.” It’s the one that goes, “Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!” But not all of us know the whole story of this wonderful piece of music.

At this time of year, you can probably find a live performance of Handel’s Messiah in your neighborhood, or on TV. It’s about two and a half hours long, which is a good length for older students, but may be too long for younger children. For the littlest ones, you might prefer to listen to a recording of just a few parts of the whole work.

Georg Frideric Handel wrote his Messiah in just twenty-four days after reading the verses it’s based on: it remains one of the great examples of God’s inspiration in art. The words come primarily from the book of Isaiah. The music was written in 1742. The first performance took place in Dublin in April of that year, and parts of the oratorio are still performed at Easter. Nowadays, though, Messiah is mostly sung at Christmas.

Even if you plan to go to hear a live performance, it is still good to listen and study some of the pieces ahead of time.

“For Unto Us a Child is Born”

For unto us a Child is born. Unto us a Son is given,
And the government shall be upon His shoulder.
And His name shall be called “Wonderful Counselor, the Mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.”

This section is great for listening practice. There are very few words, but they are repeated in complicated overlapping patterns by all the different singers at different times. Have students take a pencil and paper and check off when they hear particular phrases. For example, you might ask the kids to make a check on the paper each time they hear the word “for” – it stands out well. Older students can listen very closely and say whether they heard male or female (or high or low) voices each time.

In the next section, listen for “shoulder” in the same way. This intensive listening feels like a game, but it helps children develop their attention spans and the habit of close listening.

All the voices then sing “And His name shall be called…” together. Discuss with your students why this might be so important that Handel wanted everyone to sing it strongly together. Read this passage in Isaiah 9:6 together and discuss what it means to say that “the government shall be upon His shoulder.” Remind the children that you have lots of names for them (pet names and nicknames) because they’re so important to you, and in the same way, we have lots of names for Jesus. The Old Testament book of Isaiah uses many of these beautiful names.

“And the Glory”

And the glory, the glory of the Lord shall be revealed,
And all flesh shall see it together.
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken it.

This song, with words from Isaiah 40:5, is a joyful celebration of the arrival of the Christ Child, and a wonderful verse to learn during Advent when we wait to repeat that celebration ourselves.

Reinforce listening practice by listening for the loud and soft parts of this section of Messiah. This is an important first step in music education, and a useful thing for kids to know in their daily lives, too. Have the children lift their hands way up on the loud parts and push them down for the soft parts. For the dramatic silence near the end, hands should be on the table or the floor.

Older students can listen for specific instruments in the orchestra as they play. Have them list the instruments they hear.


For the Lord God omnipotent reigneth
The kingdom of the world is become the Kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ
And he shall reign forever and ever
King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

This section is as close as Messiah gets to having a part you can sing along with, so go ahead and sing along. Then look at some of the difficult words: “hallelujah,” “omnipotent,” “reigneth,” and “reign.” Have your students write the message out in their own words.

If you attend a live performance of Messiah, you may encounter two interesting customs that go along with the “Hallelujah Chorus.” First, people often stand up to listen to it. The story goes that King George was so excited the first time he heard it performed that he spontaneously stood up. Since no one was allowed to sit down while the king was standing, the whole theater full of people stood, too, and now it’s the custom to do so.

The other interesting custom associated with this song is that of allowing the people in the audience to come up and join in with the final chorus. Sometimes you can even buy a copy of the music in the theater so you can sing along.

Whether you enjoy the Messiah in a concert hall, on a CD, or on YouTube, your children will benefit from sharing in this important piece of our cultural and religious heritage.

Mimi Rothschild is the Founder of the nation’s leading provider of online PreK-12 online Christian educational programs for homeschoolers.

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Christmas Around the World Lessons

Mimi Rothschild
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 11:12

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-by Mimi Rothschild

As Christmas approaches, our homes can get busy and our kids can get restless. Instead of giving lessons short shrift, take this opportunity to review what you’ve learned so far this school year, using a Christmas Around the World theme.

Before you begin, find a world map: a wall map, an online map to print out, or a map made by your students can all be great choices. Whenever you work on a new country, have your children find that nation on the map, and mark it with a map pin or sticker. This will give you a good geography review as you go along.

Start in Mexico, where Las Posadas is an important part of the Christmas celebration. This is a sort of parade, in which people reenact the journey of Mary and Joseph, knocking on the door to ask for a place to stay and being told there is only space in the stable. The reenacters are then invited in, and a party is held. Make a piñata for your party from papier mache formed over a blown-up balloon, serve hot chocolate, and sing Christmas carols. This is a great way to have an easy party with fellow homeschool families. During the preparations, use math skills to plan and carry out the refreshments and decorations, review the story of Mary and Joseph’s journey to Bethlehem, and practice Spanish if you’ve been studying it.

Christmas in England has influenced our American celebration of Christmas enormously. Christmas trees became popular in the United States after Queen Victoria’s German husband introduced the custom to England. Many of our special foods, Christmas hymns, and the custom of Christmas cards also came to us from England. But one of the best ways to incorporate an English Christmas into our lessons is to read or listen to A Christmas Carol, by Charles Dickens. Whether your children are ready to read the book aloud to the family, or more of an age to watch The Muppets Christmas Carol on TV, they can enjoy this story. If you’re reading it, keep a list of new vocabulary words you meet in the book, and have the kids look them up in the dictionary.

Next stop on the Christmas Around the World journey: Finland. Practice writing friendly letters by writing letters to Santa Claus at Santa, c/o Arctic Circle, 96930 Rovaniemi, Finland. (If Santa Claus is not part of your holiday tradition, let your students help with Christmas cards, or write to grandparents about what they’re learning.) In Finland, an important Christmas custom is a thorough cleaning of the house. When your students need a break from concentrating on writing, get some good exercise with vigorous housecleaning and return to your studies with renewed energy. Another Finnish custom is to feed the birds the first thing on Christmas morning, before the people in the house eat or any presents are opened, Use this custom to talk about putting others first, as Jesus told us to do, and to review any studies you’ve done about birds.

Onward to France, where Christmas is observed with santons, figures of people from the community who are grouped around the crèche, which is the manger scene of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph. Review your lessons on community helpers or careers, and make santons from clay or paper to add to your manger scene. France is also the home of the Buche de Noel, a famous Christmas cake made in the shape of a log. Frost a jelly roll to look like a log, review your lessons on plants or trees, and talk with your children about how the plants we associate with Christmas show a picture of Jesus. Those green plants remind us of the way Jesus triumphed over death by His resurrection, and of our own rebirth in Him. This, you can explain, is why we bring trees into our homes at Christmas: to remind ourselves and others of our eternal life through our savior Jesus.

In Ghana, on the west coast of Africa, children walk through the streets in the evening singing carols and calling, “Christ is near! Christ is near!” They dress in splendid costumes and sometimes even dance to the music of brass bands. Christmas in Ghana is a combination of church celebrations and visiting friends and relatives in nearby towns. Homes are decorated with bright paper ornaments. In Ghana, few families have the kind of material abundance that we are used to. Presents, for families that can afford them, are usually shoes or school books. Take this opportunity to talk with your children about the differences in material wealth from one country to another, and to remember that Jesus tells us to help and pray for those who have less than we do. This is also a time to remember that Christmas is not about presents and fancy decorations, even though we enjoy those things, but about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ.

An Australian Christmas is a summer holiday. Families go camping and have barbecues on the beach. Review the seasons and how the rotation of the earth causes them while you learn about Australian Christmas customs. Other appropriate science topics would be the kinds of animals God has placed in different habitats, and the differences between marsupial and placental mammals. A beautiful custom in Australia is the candlelight carol service. People in cities come out into the center of town with candles to sing Christmas carols together. In Australia, where a relatively high proportion of people live alone, loneliness is as much as problem at Christmas as poverty. Pray with your children about someone you know who might be lonely this Christmas.

With these ideas, you can work on science, math, reading, writing, and social studies, even as you enjoy the preparations for this wonderful holiday.

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We need to be encouragers, always.

Mimi Rothschild
Wednesday, 19 November 2008 09:56

1 Comment

-by Mimi Rothschild

Both as parents and as teachers, we are charged with encouraging and uplifting our children. Children are like sponges; they soak up whatever their environment is filled with. This is the very reason many of us chose to homeschool in the first place, so that our children won’t be surrounded by things that are not desirable. But we cannot forget that in place of those negative things we work so diligently to remove from our children’s lives, we must provide love, knowledge, joy and encouragement. Children are, after all, a gift from God and we should treat them as such.

Proverbs 22:6 reminds us to “Train up a child in the way he should go, and even when he is old he will not depart from it.” It is crucial that our children be taught the word of God and His teachings. And we can certainly do this in our daily curriculum, as well as with family Bible study and devotionals. But we mustn’t forget that a big part of teaching includes continual encouragement for our children.

Do we as Christians not seek encouragement from God? Isn’t it an amazing feeling to know that God loves us so much, and that He will never forget or forsake us? According to Hebrews 6:10: “For God is not so unjust as to forget your work and the love you have shown him as you have ministered to the saints and continue to minister to them.” If God, our Heavenly Father, provides us with the endless inspiration of His word, then how much more should we, as parents, be an inspiration for our own children?

Have you ever enthusiastically told a child what a great job they did, or how proud you are of them? If you have, then you’ve seen the way their face lights up, how their eyes shine, how their chest puffs and they beam with pride. Do you realize that nobody on this earth will have as big an impact on your child’s life as you? Children thrive on encouragement. And they should be getting plenty of it from you. Plant good seeds as they grow and they will reap the fruits of your labor as they continue through life.

This applies not only in day to day life, but also in homeschooling. When your child successfully completes an assignment, learns a new math rule, or spells a difficult word correctly, how do you react? Do you say “ok” and move on to the next lesson or step? Next time, take a few minutes to remind your students how smart they are, and what a wonderful effort they are making in their work (assuming they are).

Of course, you have to strike a balance so you don’t make your children over-confident. But by providing consistent, well deserved encouragement to them, you will raise intelligent, confident, productive and faithful adults.

Mimi Rothschild is the Founder of the nation’s leading provider of online PreK-12 online Christian educational programs for homeschoolers.

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Sensory Modalities- Multisensory Learning

Mimi Rothschild
Monday, 20 October 2008 13:04

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One of the great things about homeschooling is that we can teach each of our children in the very best way for that particular child. One of the learning differences that matters most is the child’s preferred sensory modality.

That’s a long phrase that means that some children learn better through seeing (visual learners), some through hearing (auditory learners), and some through touching (kinesthetic learners). God has given us our senses, and we all use them in the ways that are best for our uniquely created selves.

How Can I Tell My Child’s Preferred Sensory Modality?

When you get out a map, your visual learners might look closely and study it. Your auditory learners might look at it briefly and then look back at you, listening for an explanation, or start reading the names of the countries out loud. Your kinesthetic learners might touch the map, tracing out a route with their fingers.

Some people are more balanced than others, and might seem to use information from different sensory channels equally. Usually, even more balanced learners show their preferred modality when they’re feeling a little stressed.

Your auditory learner might talk to herself when she is working hard on a math test. Your kinesthetic learner might count on his fingers or doodle numbers in the margins. Your visual learner might write in the margins, too, but he’ll be doing it so he can look at the figures to see whether they look right.

Fortunately, all children learn best when they use all their senses, so you don’t have to be sure about their
preferred modalities. Just include a range of different activities in your lessons. It is so easy for us to think of activities that fit our own preferred modality! Sometimes we need to be reminded of the best activities for the other learning modalities.

Activities for Visual Learners
• Looking at charts and diagrams.
• Color-coding information
• Using graphic organizers to show information
• Practicing with flashcards and worksheets
• Using videos

Activities for Auditory Learners
• Listening to lectures
• Discussing information and ideas
• Reading aloud
• Using learning songs and chants
• Reciting information and doing oral practice

Activities for Kinesthetic Learners
• Using manipulatives
• Doing hands-on practice
• Creating models
• Playing games with information
• Using role play and drama

A perfect lesson would include activities for all the senses. We know that practicing new learning in different ways helps children learn better than practicing for the same amount of time using the same approach. Research also shows that multisensory lessons are learned more easily and remembered longer.

Combine different activities to get the most out of each of them and the best for each learner. Learning videos let visual learners watch and auditory learners listen. Let kinesthetic learners follow along with drawings or manipulatives, or try out what they see on their own. Have kinesthetic learners make graphic organizers with their visual learner siblings, and the auditory learners will join in discussing how to sort the information in the organizers. You can even include cooking, gardening, and nature study to bring in the senses of smell and taste. As far as we know, children don’t use these senses as their preferred learning modality, but we have all seen how cooking a dish from a country being studied can bring that lesson to life.

Soon multisensory lessons will be second nature!

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Proverbs For Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Monday, 12 February 2007 08:13

1 Comment

Good morning, homeschool students! Welcome to another week of learning. Today we are going to study the sage wisdom of the past by looking at different proverbs. A proverb is a saying that encourages wisdom or discourages folly. Be sure to check out the Old Testament Proverbs in your Bible. In the meantime, check out the following online games, puzzles, and jokes dealing with popular proverbs.

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschoolers
A-Z Home’s Cool:
Take a look at these hilarious homeschool proverbs.Elementary Homeschoolers
Here is a quiz that you can take to learn some popular English proverbs.

Middle School Homeschoolers
Complete crossword puzzles, do a word search, and test your knowledge of proverbs with a quiz.

High School Homeschoolers
Divine Plan:
Read the entire Book of Proverbs straight from the Old Testament.

“This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.” – Deuteronomy 30:19

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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The Parables of Christ For Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Thursday, 14 December 2006 15:08

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Good afternoon, homeschoolers! Today we are going to learn more about the lessons that Jesus told his followers. These lessons were called parables. Instead of coming out and telling the disciples what to do. He explained what they should do in the form of a story. These parables have lessons for homeschoolers of all ages. Let’s explore some of them together!

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschoolers
Check out this page for printable coloring pages dealing with Christ’s parables.

Elementary Homeschoolers
Children’s Bible Stories: Click here for an animated adventure into the Parable of the Sower.

Middle School Homeschoolers
MSSS Bible Lesson: There are lots Bible lessons about the parables of Jesus just for kids on this helpful page.

High School Homeschoolers
Click here for a critical analysis of every single one of Jesus’s parables.

“Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit lives in you?” – 1 Corinthians 3:16

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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Christian Music For Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Monday, 20 November 2006 08:51

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Good morning! Today we homeschoolers are going to greet the new day with some singing. Did you know that God hears every note homeschoolers sing? It’s true! Your voice delights him when you lift it up in praise. Let’s worship the Lord together through the art of song.

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschoolers
Preschool Rainbow:
Here are some fun fingerplays. Have a sing-a-long with some friends!

Elementary Homeschoolers
Rabbit Ranch:
Here you’ll find some great Bible-themed songs and rhymes just for kids. You can even download them to find out how they sound.

Middle School Homeschoolers
Worship Songs:
This great resource is full of dozens of hymns and contemporary worship songs that you can listen to and sing.

High School Homeschoolers
Radio Grace:
Check out this great page from The MorningStar Academy. It’s a free streaming radio station that broadcasts contemporary Christian music all over the world!

“Every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.” -Hebrews 3:4

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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New Testament Miracles For Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Friday, 13 October 2006 13:12

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Hello again, homeschoolers! Welcome to the second installment of our Bible Miracles series! Today we are going to learn about miracles in the New Testament. When our Lord came to Earth in the form of a man, that man retained the Lord’s supernatural power. As a result, he performed a variety of miracles. Let’s learn about them.

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschooling Students
Bible Coloring Pages:
Click on this link for coloring pages dealing with the Life of Jesus and the miracles he performed.

Elementary Homeschooling Students
Calvary Chapel:
Check out this fun worksheet full of puzzles and mazes about Christ’s miracles.

Middle School Homeschool Students
All About Jesus Christ:
Take a look at this FAQ page dealing with Jesus’s healing ministry.

High School Homeschooling Students
Christian Answers: Has Science disproved the miracles of Christ? You decide!

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.” -John 15:12

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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Old Testament Miracles For Homeschoolers

Mimi Rothschild
Thursday, 12 October 2006 12:54

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Welcome homeschoolers! The Scripture is chock full of awe-inspiring miracles that showcase God’s supernatural power and inolvement with His people. These miracles weren’t solely meant to show off, there is a lesson behind each one. Today we are going to explore some of the miracles we find in the Old Testament. Click on the links below to gain an understanding of God’s supernatural involvement with His creation.

Pre-Kindergarten Homeschool Students
Calvary Kids Pages:
Click here for coloring pages about Noah’s Ark, Moses’s burning bush, Jesus’s healings, and more miracles.

Elementary Homeschool Students
DLTK Bible:
Here you’ll find a neat craft page with all kinds of Moses-themed paper crafts.

Middle School Homeshool Students
Passover Activity:
Check out this fun game. Put the plauges in order to find the hidden word. Try to do it in thirty seconds or less!

High School Homeschool Students
Answers in Genesis:
Click on this link to listen to webcasts from Christian scientists wrestling with the idea of the Flood.

“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.” -1 John 4:7

In Him,
The Jubilee Academy

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