The New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition News January 2016 Volume XXVII Number 5
Bill to Allow for Online Driver Education
AAA New England hopes to generate support for HB 504, a bill that would allow students in N.H. to take the classroom portion of driver ed online instead of at a driving school. You may read the full bill text at http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/legislation/2015/HB0504.pdf. For more information contact Jacqueline Roland at email@example.com or (603) 847-9070.
The American Legion Oratorical Contest
Homeschooled high schoolers under age 20 are eligible to enter this contest to focus on a deeper knowledge and appreciation for the U.S. Constitution. Competition begins at the post level and advances to a state competition. The state contest will be held at St. Anselm College in Manchester on Saturday, February 27. To qualify to participate in the state contest, the student must first compete and win a district competition. The Seacoast Region is district 3, and that contest will be held in Hampton on the evening of February 11; all district contests must be completed by February 14. Contact your local American Legion Post to find out when they are hosting the local competition.
There is also a program for junior high school students. It is modeled on the senior program, but the speeches are shorter.
For more information go to http://www.legion.org/oratorical/about.
Winter/Spring Semester eStart Courses for College Credit
There is still time for students to register for Spring 2016 eStart courses which begin on January 19.
eStart is an excellent opportunity for students to enhance their educational experience, and get an early and affordable start on their college careers. New courses are available, and financial assistance is available for eligible students. For more information visit, http://www.ccsnh.edu/academics/estart, or contact Ed Symes, eStart Program Coordinator, at 603-717-5965.
Bill Introduced to Eliminate the Home Education Advisory Council
HB 1414 has been introduced in the New Hampshire House Education Committee to repeal the Home Education Advisory Council. More details will soon be provided at the NHHC website. Go to http://gencourt.state.nh.us/bill_status/billText.aspx?id=685&txtFormat=html for the text of the bill. An update from HEAC chairman Amy Gall will be available soon.
Skiing at Pats Peak
Ski or snowboard lessons, Mondays at 11:30 a.m. and Thursdays at 10 and 11:30. $12 per lesson (rentals and lift tickets are additional). You can sign up for each lesson one at a time, one week in advance.
Homeschool skiing $22 per lift ticket, Mondays and Thursdays. The 5-week program costs $110; rentals and lift tickets are additional. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, 2:30 or 5:30; pick one day and time and come every week at that time. The open program runs Monday through Thursday from January 4 through February 8, and the second session is Thursday and Friday from February 18 through March 24. Because the first session registration deadline has already passed, there is a $25 surcharge for that program. Visit http://www.patspeak.com/homeschool.html.
Homeschool Discovery Programs at Amoskeag Fishways
Exploring River Life
2nd Thursday of every month, Oct – June (Feb. 11, 2016), 10am – 12pm
Rivers provide dynamic habitat for a diverse array of life. Through field trips, data collection and classroom instruction, we will focus our studies on the living and non-living components of the Merrimack River ecosystem. We will strive to understand how the conditions in distinct areas of the river support various forms of life.
Ages 9 – 14. $10 per child per class. Registration required. Call 626-FISH
Scholarship Available to Homeschoolers
The Network for Educational Opportunity, soon to become the Children's Scholarship Fund NH, offers a needs-based K-12 scholarship which may be used for tuition at out-of-district public, private, and religious schools, as well as homeschooling expenses.
To apply, go to http://www.scholarshipfund.org/apply/.
Join in “Concord Reads,” open to all at the Concord Public Library
The Friends of Concord Public Library invite all homeschoolers to participate in Concord Reads 2016. We will be reading When Books Went To War by Molly Guptill Manning. Six copies of the book will be available to share through CPL. There will also be an author event at Gibson's bookstore on April 21. You do not need to be from Concord/Penacook to join. If you'd like to participate, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Environmental Education at the Great Bay Discovery Center
The Great Bay Discovery Center in Greenland offers programs to promote research, education, and stewardship throughout the Great Bay estuary. This winter programs for homeschooled children ages 6-11 will be offered on select Fridays through January, February and March. Each program consists of a mix of play, environmental education, crafts and exploration around Great Bay.
For more information contact Colleen McClare at 603-778-0015 or Colleen.McClare@wildlife.nh.gov.
Homeschool Art Classes in Meredith
Art classes will meet on Tuesdays at VynnArt in Meredith, to explore different mediums and techniques. All classes will be held 9:15-10:15, 10:45-11:45, or 12:30-1:30.
Session One - Jan. 12 - Feb. 16
Session Two - Mar. 1- Mar. 29
Session Three - April. 5 - May. 17 (no class on April 26)
VynnArt is located at 30 Main Street in Meredith. The 5-week fee is $55 per session, $10 discount for a sibling; 6-week fee is $66 per session, $12 discount for a sibling. Pre-registration is required; at least four students are necessary to hold the class, no more than eight. Contact Marilee Sundius for more information at email@example.com or 603-279-1255.
Mosaic Explore Offers New Options for New Hampshire Homeschoolers
by Aimee Seiler (NHHC representative for the Manchester area)
Cristina Drondoe is the kind of homeschooling mom who, when the right kind of program isn’t available for her children, goes out there and creates it herself. The Bedford mom of two had been driving all over the state in order to find interesting homeschool classes and opportunities for her children, but had found many of them to be disappointing. So she put her business experience to work and created Mosaic Explore.
Mosaic offers a “fertile ground of options” for homeschooled students each Wednesday, says Drondoe, making use of the space offered at the Unitarian Universalist church in Manchester. Classes range from highly academic options such as physics, Spanish, and creative writing, to exciting enrichment courses such as chess club, survival, theater, and cartooning. Children have the opportunity to drop by for only one class or choose a pathway of courses and stay for the entire day. The short 7-week terms make trying something new at Mosaic seem almost risk-free, as students are able to try new and different classes without a large cost or commitment. Classes range from $95-$125 per term, depending on whether the course runs for an hour or an hour and a half, with a 10% discount available for early enrollment.
The instructors at Mosaic boast impressive qualifications, from a math teacher with a Ph.D. in Algebraic Geometry to a music teacher who studied at London’s Royal School of Music. Drondoe says, “It’s all about providing high-quality instruction while maintaining flexibility, which is something homeschooling families value. An a-la-carte menu of a good variety of classes for all ages, taught by top-notch instructors, with quarterly based enrollment fits the bill pretty well!”
Kristin has been sending her sons to Mosaic Explore since its doors opened last year. She has been consistently impressed by the instructors at Mosaic, calling them “true professionals”. She describes her sons’ Anatomy and Physiology teacher, Beth Penney, as “extremely knowledgeable, extremely qualified…she can teach them content that is above what I can do with them…in a way that they could absorb better than from me.” Kristen also values the social opportunities that Mosaic has afforded her boys. Not only have they made many homeschooled friends at the program, but they have also learned how to, “ask questions, answer questions, take others’ opinions into account” in a way that she cannot replicate in a home environment. Jackie, who has been sending her daughter to Mosaic Explore since last year, agrees: “Time is so precious and I don’t want to waste it…but the teachers here, they’re the top.” Another mother, Erica, drives over an hour to get to Mosaic, and appreciates the creative writing course at Mosaic especially: “Writing is subjective…I don’t feel strong enough in that area to critique beyond basic grammar and my opinions, so being able to get feedback from other classmates and a teacher in an area that is so gray, I find that to be helpful. “ She describes Mosaic as the “highlight” of her children’s week.
Drondoe reports that the instructors at Mosaic are just as impressed with their homeschooled students. Many of her teachers are experienced college professors and elementary and secondary teachers, and have reported that “this is the first group they have worked with that has shown real enthusiasm for learning, who really love to learn.” The zeal for learning has afforded instructors greater academic opportunities: one teacher reported to Drondoe,”‘sometimes I am doing things here that are at a high school or even college level…[my schooled students at the same age]would never understand that.”
The greatest advantage of Mosaic, Drondoe explains, is that it allows students to see that, “homeschooling is a community. There are many of us out there!”
More information can be found about Mosaic Explore on their website, mosaicexplore.com.
Classes for Homeschoolers at The Praxeum in Portsmouth
Jon Pawelko and Dr. Darren Tapp are working on a new home-school curriculum starting mid-March 2016 at The Praxeum in Portsmouth. An open house for parents and students will be held at the Praxeum on Wednesday, January 20 at 7 p.m. to discuss the program. Target student age range is 10-14. The current plan is for 1 or 2 days per week for 12-13 weeks.
Dr. Tapp will teach one math course, customized to the age range in class. Topics could include factoring, fractions, set theory, geometry, algebra, graphing, and functions. He has been teaching “Dr. Tapp’s Arithmetical Playground” to students ages 6 to 9 at the Praxeum since 2014, provides an algebra course to ages 13 to 15, and teaches for SNHU.
Jon Pawelko, an IT consultant, will teach three classes: Lessons for the Young Economist, Intro to Computer Science, and Sketch Comedy Writing. Contact him at Jon@LampoonTheSystem.com or 773-243-6141 for more information or to confirm attendance at the open house.
The Praxeum is a flexible use space devoted to use by entrepreneurs and artists, and for alternative education. It is located at 300 McDonough Street in Portsmouth.
Learn About Handling Money
TheSimpleDollar.com has recently updated their series of banking guides for 2016 that deal with financial literacy.
You can see the entire guide along with some of its features here:
Remember, check our website www.nhhomeschooling.org for more activities and announcements!
NHHC Newsletter Staff
Abbey Lawrence, Editor, PO Box 97, Center Tuftonboro, NH 03816, 539-7233, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Stefanie Marsh, layout and web posting.
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