The New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition News March 2016 Volume XXVII Number 7

Coordinator’s Report March 2016

We have had quite a few changes to our roster of NHHC volunteers over the past few months. I’d like to welcome Robin Hanson who recently joined us to serve the Rochester area, Jessica Bethune who has been working diligently in the Derry/Salem area, and Erica Sylvester who has taken on the Laconia area. It is with regret that I accept the resignation of Nashua-area Representative Kelly Bellemare; her unschooling perspective greatly enriched our discussions and will be sorely missed. We are now seeking support volunteers in the Plymouth, Nashua, and Berlin/Colebrook areas, as well as someone to take over Secretary duties from Marion Claus as she devotes more time to increasing family responsibilities.

At our next board meeting we will be planning the annual Spring Workshop and discussing proposed changes to the NHHC bylaws. Hope to see you there!

Amy Gall

Meeting of the NHHC Board of Representatives March 8

The quarterly meeting of the NHHC Board of Representatives will be held Tuesday, March 8 at 6:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Elkins Public Library in Canterbury. Members are welcome to attend this meeting. For more information, please contact Amy Gall, 838-5081,

Executive Session for House Bill 1414 on Tuesday, March 1

The House Education Committee (HEC) will vote on their recommendation for House Bill 1414, and any amendments to it, at their executive session Tuesday, March 1, 9:30 a.m. in room 205 of the Legislative Office Building, behind the State House. The bill eliminates the Home Education Advisory Council's role in rule-making for home education laws, and abolishes the Home Education Advisory Council (HEAC). A proposed amendment to the bill removes the New Hampshire Department of Education from home education rule-making and delays the dissolution of HEAC until 2022. Individuals should contact members of the House Education Committee to make their feelings known about this bill and proposed amendment. Members of the public are welcome to attend and observe the HEC executive session, and can register their position on the bill by signing in, but are not allowed to speak or otherwise provide testimony. If you plan to attend, it is important to be aware that while the session starts at 9:30 the HEC will be deliberating on several bills that day and may not get to HB1414 until later than that.

The full House will vote on the committee recommendation for HB 1414 on either March 9 or 10. Please be sure to contact your local representatives between March 1 and 9 to give them your opinion about the committee recommendation. A list of your local state representatives can be found at the N.H. General Court website; click on the representatives’ names to get their contact information.

Information about the outcomes of the HEC executive session and the full House vote will be posted on our website

Rebecca Rupp to Speak at NHHC Spring Workshop May 7

We’re very happy to announce that Rebecca Rupp will be speaking at our Spring Workshop on May 7. Rupp is the author of Home Learning Year by Year: How to Design a Homeschool Curriculum from Preschool Through High School and has written over 200 articles for national magazines and nearly two dozen books - fiction and non-fiction - for both children and adults. In addition to authoring several books and many articles on homeschooling, she designs multifaceted science and history programs for schools and libraries.

Rebecca homeschooled her three sons in Vermont and particularly speaks to the subjects of putting together your own curriculum and using various resources to make learning an engaging and fun experience for your children. Her talk will include insights on homeschooling for all ages, including high school students.

Rebecca will be speaking in the morning. In the afternoon, we’ll have one or more additional panels or round table discussions on homeschooling topics. We’ll be finalizing those details soon.

Make plans to join other New Hampshire homeschoolers on Saturday, May 7, in the Activity Center at St. Elizabeth Seton Church, 190 Meetinghouse Road, Bedford, New Hampshire for inspiration and support.

Class on job applications, interviews, and entering employment at Littleton Coin Company

Littleton Coin Company invites high school homeschoolers to an informational class on March 10. The presentation covers how to fill out applications, and what to expect during an interview and on the job. Students will also learn about Littleton Coin, tour the facilities, and hear about jobs available. The program will run from 9:00 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Those who are interested should RSVP by calling Abby Watrud at 603-444-4247 or email Learn more about Littleton Coin at

Christian Homeschool Formal Dance

Homeschooler Rhonda Hensley is organizing "New Hampshire's 1st Annual Christian Homeschool Formal," preceded by required formal dance lessons. The dance will be held Friday, April 22, from 5 until 9:30, at the Quill Restaurant in Hooksett. The cost is $35. This is to be a formal event, with very specific dress, dance, and conduct requirements. The deadline for registration is March 2, and dance classes begin March 4.

Dance lessons will be held at Arthur Murray’s Dance Studio, 99 Elm Street in Manchester. There will be six 40-minute lessons, on Fridays, March 4, 11, 18, and 25, and April 1 and 15, 6-6:40 p.m. Lessons will cost $40. Payment must be made at the studio March 4.

Contact Rhonda at or 512-639-4260 for more information and to request registration forms and parent/student conduct agreements.

A question about working papers

A mother writes: My 13-year old is applying to volunteer at the Concord SPCA. They mentioned he needs to have a certificate from the child's school because he is between the age of 12-15. Can I bring the documentation for the certificate to my local elementary school or do I have to bring it to the high school, where local middle and high schoolers attend?

And several answers:
We've always gone to the high school guidance office. They have all the papers ready for students and are very helpful. I usually call first, just to ask questions, and so that they know I'm coming.

I went to my local superintendent's office (Portsmouth) who took care of everything there.

In Amherst (Souhegan High School) they have a specific person at the high school who handles working papers.

Classes for Homeschoolers at The Praxeum in Portsmouth

Jon Pawelko and Dr. Darren Tapp are starting a new home-school curriculum on Monday, March 14 at The Praxeum in Portsmouth. Target student age range is 8-13. Classes will meet two days per week (Monday and Thursday) for ~12 weeks (spring break TBD).

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 on hiatus, will teach three classes: Lessons for the Young Economist, Intro to Software Engineering, and Sketch Comedy Writing. Contact him at or 773-243-6141 for more information.

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.

Weare Home Educators Book Sale

Friday, April 8, 10:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.
Village Chapel Baptist Church, 15 Twin Bridge Road, Weare
All items for sale must be tagged using our special labels. You will receive these before the sale. You must write your seller ID and price on each label. Books using different labels will not be allowed. You will be responsible for putting your books on the tables by categories and gathering them at the end of the sale. Sellers can stop by on Thursday, April 7 between 11-2 or arrive at 9:00 a.m. the morning of the sale to place your books on the tables. Sellers will be required to volunteer for at least one 2-hour shift in one of the following ways:
Help in the sales room (straightening up or answering curriculum questions)
Childcare during the sale
Cleanup of tables after sale
Checkout (WHE members only)
Or pay $10 fee if you cannot volunteer
Register at

A new way of teaching for a group of Xi'an students

by Marion Claus, NHHC secretary
My friends' parents visited us today from Xi'an China. Ask your child what Xi'an is famous for. You will find that it is the burial site of the “Terracotta Warriors” of the First Emperor of China Qin Shi Huang. Huizhen He (pronounced Huay Jin Hee) or Mamma is a high school Chinese Literature teacher. Feng Li (pronounced Foong Lee) or Poppa is a Professor at a “Normal School;" he instructs teachers how to teach. They asked me about homeschooling and wanted to see our textbooks.

Surprised at the colors and photos in the Human Biology and Marine Biology books they explained that students in China sit still and memorize facts most of the day. They pinch themselves to stay awake. Teachers have a hard time keeping the attention of the 60-70 students all day. Mamma explained that she goes to work at 6 a.m. and is still teaching at 9:30 p.m. while students go home and do homework until one or two in the morning five days a week. My friend Ke Li (Curly, we call him), their only son, who translated for us said they do have a lunch break in the afternoon. Ke Li attended college in the United States and has lived here for nine years now. He and his New Hampshire-native wife live near Boston.

We shared our books, methods, laws and leisurely schedule with them. I explained to them through our translator how the NHHC serves the homeschoolers of New Hampshire. They were fascinated with the innovative teaching methods and ability for teachers to tailor their education to the students' learning style. Mamma wrote a blog about our visit. Poppa said he is going to teach his students how we homeschool in the United States. He is really touched by the visit and decided to embed some of the experience into his research for education and write an academic paper about it. He would like to send students here to learn from us during their school breaks. They are both very anxious to keep up communicating with us to learn more.

My two homeschool students shared how they learn what they need to learn. “Sometimes in order to do what we want we have to learn other things such as spelling.” My seventh grader shared how she remembers history through map work, cooking and serving food, activities, reading and creating a time line with cartoon figures from the time period she studies. Our two pet Bearded Dragon Lizards made a huge impression on our guests. We shared folded origami with our new friends today as well as tea, candy, fruit, and fried mushrooms. We are now invited to visit Xi'an.

Horses for Homeschoolers Spring 2016

Goodrich Farm & Stable in Berwick, Maine will be running a spring session of Horses for Homeschoolers, designed for students over the age of seven. Each session will include a mounted lesson and an unmounted lesson. The mounted portion will be a traditional riding lesson in the Hunt Seat style of riding. All riders must wear an ASTM/SEI certified helmet and sensible clothing—long pants, sensible shoes, preferably with a hard sole and heel, no open toed sandals nor platform shoes, etc. There is no indoor arena, so parents should make sure their children are dressed appropriately to ride outside.

Sessions will be held on Wednesdays from 1:30 to 3:30, March 23 and 30, April 6, 13, 20, 27, and May 4 and 11. The total cost is $275, with a $75 deposit to hold your spot due when you sign up and the balance of $200 due the first day of the program. Completed applications should be submitted no later than March 4; a minimum of three people participating is needed. The deposit to hold your spot is non-refundable; however, if we do not received the minimum number of participants, your deposit will be refunded.

Call (207)698-1970 or e-mail to request an application or for more information with any questions.

UNH Celebrity Series

The final performance of the UNH Celebrity season on April 9 at 7:00 p.m. features Mnozil Brass. YES, YES, YES is the new concert program by this unique septet. A plethora of cover versions and stunning choreography combine to make it an unforgettable evening.

Ticket prices are $30 General, $10 UNH Student with ID and Youth under 18. Tickets for the series season can be purchased on line at, or by calling the Box Office at 603-862-7222(PCAC). The hours of operation are Monday – Friday, 12:00pm – 5:00pm as well as one hour before each event. Visit the Celebrity Series web page:

Homeschool Public Skate at Plymouth State University Ice Arena

Fridays March 25-April 29, 12:30-2:45 p.m.
$4 Admission only; $7 Admission & Skate Rental; children under 5 are free.Helmets are recommended for skaters under 5. Mini group skating lessons are available, and must be arranged through the Skating Director, Sarah Benoit at or 603-254-8675.

Remember, check our website for more activities and announcements!

NHHC Newsletter Staff

Abbey Lawrence, Editor, PO Box 97, Center Tuftonboro, NH 03816, 539-7233,
Stefanie Marsh, layout and web posting.

Portions of NHHC publications may be reprinted for information purposes provided that credit is given to the New Hampshire Homeschooling Coalition. Contributors retain full rights to their writing, and their permission should be obtained before reprinting.

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