Homeschool: Teaching Music

One of the requirements you may have to teach when you are homeschooling is music. You do not need to do anything so ambitious as enroll them in music lessons or teach them how to read notes. Although, if you want to do that, it would be great! You can introduce your daughter/son to musical instruments with books such as these titles. If you click on the books it will take you to the site to learn more about them and purchase if you so choose.

Zin! Zin! Zin! A Violin by Lloyd Moss is a lyrical book teaching children about instruments and how each one adds to the richness of the orchestra.

Here is a video of the book that has a short musical piece as each instrument is introduced for children to see and hear it.

A Child’s Introduction to the Orchestra by Robert Levine is terrific book because not only does it teach about the various instruments in the orchestra, but it has song selections too.

Have a great week! ~Lisa~

The Unexpected: 7 Things to Keep Going

You plan as best as you can and, seemingly out of nowhere, something happens to derail those plans. Having to help school your child at home; having a baby, losing a job, moving, illness, you can fill in the blank for what has happened to you to change your circumstances. You probably feel overwhelmed and a bit stuck on what to do next. Screen Shot 2020-08-17 at 12.44.41 PM.png

1.Reach out Having someone to listen is a great help. Many times they can offer help or give a different perspective.

2. Get connected Is there a support group that can help? What about a Facebook group, an internet meeting, a community program? Since Covid-19 so much more online opportunities have been created and there are more ways to be doing things virtually. I know it isn’t like being there, but you can get connected with people and programs.

3. Do the next thing What is one thing you can do right now? You will feel better knowing that you have done something rather than nothing. Maybe just writing down all of the things you have to do will help. That is the first step…

4. Make a plan What do you want to see accomplished today? What do you need to do to accomplish it? Just write down a few reasonable things that you know can be done. One year I was teaching four classes and having to create all new lessons for  50% of them and was tutoring ten students. I know! What was I thinking?! I had an extremely long list of tasks I needed  to do and it was sooo gratifying to put a big ol’ line through the items I got finished each day. I try to be too ambitious and put a bunch of things on the list. I have realized that if I plan for a couple of things I can always add more to what I wanted to do for the day.

5. Ask for help How many times have you seen your child struggle and you know if they just asked for help they could go on. I tell homeschool families that I don’t have all of the answers, but I will try my hardest to find someone who can help.

6. Help others I know that may sound crazy when things are topsy-turvy, but being in a situation that you didn’t expect gives us compassion for others. Even if you do not have the time to help, making a batch of cookies or asking how they are doing and listening will help lift your spirits too.

7. It’s okay to fail. Isn’t this what we tell our children? Why don’t we heed our own advice?  I try to drag out the spandex tights, cape, and the bright red boots , but I realize that I don’t look so good in that costume and it show every flaw I have, and believe me, I have a lot!  It’s a costume after all, not “real” clothes.

For you who have been thrust into homeschooling, I believe in you! I know you can do this. You love your child and want the best for her/him and I know you will help them to succeed.

Have a great week!  ~Lisa~ 




Homeschool Notification Deadline

person holding black backpack

Photo by Luis Quintero on

School is just about to begin! I just wanted to remind you to turn in your notification form to the superintendent’s office two weeks before your child’s school building begins the academic year. This will insure that it will be received before the deadline established by the state of Ohio that states the notification form must be received no later than the week school begins. The superintendent has two weeks to respond to your  notification. If you do not receive your excusal from compulsory education within that time frame then your child is considered excused.

Please do not get concerned if your excusal letter is later than that since there are likely to be more people homeschooling as well as many details that the superintendent has to work out with the current situation of Covid-19.

Have a great week! ~Lisa~

An Act of Kindness


I had the privilege of doing a portfolio review this past month for a wonderful and thoughtful young lady. Her mom said she wanted to let her neighbors know that they are not alone during these difficult times. She bought plastic containers, filled them with wrapped candy, and attached this note to each one. We can make someone’s day with a simple act of kindness. This would be easy for you and your children to do for school and would count for Language Arts and Handwriting.

Have a great week! ~Lisa~



Tax-Free Weekend

I can’t help it, I never get tired of buying school supplies! I think maybe it has something to do with being a teacher. The good news is that this coming weekend (August 7-9) you will be able to get school supplies tax free!

The Ohio Department of Taxation has announced the sales free tax weekend or “Sales Tax Holiday.”


During the weekend, the following items will be exempt from sales and use tax:

  • Clothing priced at $75 or less
  • School supplies priced at $20 or less
  • School instructional material priced at $20 or less

I couldn’t wait until the weekend to purchase these supplies in the dollar section of Target.

I found these vinyl cubes that can be used with dry erase markers so I can change the sides as needed. You can write numbers and have your daughter or son roll them and multiply the numbers. You could also use them for alphabet letters and sounds, and the ideas keep on coming….

I was excited to purchase these tempera paints that are in a pouch. You only use what you need, no mess or wasted paint. I can’t wait to do activities with my granddaughter who is officially starting preschool this year.

My whiteboards need to be replaced and for $1.00 the price can’t be beat! They hold up really well and I use them every week when I am tutoring my students.



Here is one way that I use whiteboards when teaching my students. As you can see we were working on two different base words and suffixes. Be sure to use dry erase markers for easy wipe off. You can see there are some smudges on the board and that is why I am replacing this one. It was a great investment for a buck!



Happy shopping! ~ Lisa ~