Homeschool Review

Every year as part of Maine State requirements of Homeschoolers we participate in a peer portfolio review, overseen by a certified teacher.  I feel so fortunate to live in Maine, where the requirements are extremely minimal, and homeschoolers and unschoolers can learn how they choose and still meet requirements set by the state.

Our peer review is basically a gathering of friends.  We sit, roughly divided by our children’s ages (young or old) and discuss what we do in our families to cover the various subjects.  It ends up being a great way to share resources, frustrations, and success stories.

In the past I have used this blog as an ongoing portfolio–but it seems this year that goal got away from me.  So, in prep, I sat with each of the kids and we did a quick review of our work this past year.  It was such a good exercise I realize we should be doing that a few times a year, partly because Fall was so long ago none of us could really remember what we’d done, and partly because we all felt so proud of ourselves for all of our amazing work.  Aside from math and writing, we rarely categorize our learning into subjects–but when you take the time to pull apart a year’s experiences and stuff them into boxes they really amount to quite a bit of education.  You can learn a lot in a year (often without even trying!)

At the risk of boring you all, and for the sake of record keeping, I’ll record them here, interspersed with pics of what we’ve been up to these past months.


Family Read-aloud:

Mysterious Benedict Society, books 1-3

The Boy on the Porch

Half a World Away

Maniac Magee

Understood Betsy

Laura Ingalls Wilder books, 1-4 (so far, again)

Harry Potter, book 1



Curls by Mimi, for piano recital


Juniper, 2016/2017

Independent Reading: 

Land of Stories, books 2-5

The Family Under the Bridge

Bridge to Terabithia 


Beast Academy levels 3C and started 3D (Multiplication, Division, Fractions, Measurement, Variables


Book report on Bridge to Terabithia, work on an independent story set in colonial times, birthday cards, pen pal letters to cousin, poetry and song, typing and spelling through SpellCity online.

“Moving Beyond the Page” unit study on The Family Under the Bridge


folk songs

piano study (Bach, Beethovan)

Special Projects:

Paper mache crafting of convertible for Girl Dolls, Girl Doll furniture and accessories, Knitting 2 hats, babysitting certificate, drumming, song and dance, yoga, circus performance, film class, intensive nature and primitive skills studies (bow drill, wild edibles, shelter building, cordage making, basket weaving, etc), and bird ID.

Physical Education:, she has participated in swim lessons, soccer, and track and field.

Health Education:, she has helped shop for and prepare balanced meals, participated in Mother-Daughter group discussions about puberty and body changes, and helped prepare herbal remedies.






Juni competed in middle school track and field qualifying for regional championships in 800m, 1600m, and long jump!


Kale 2016/2017

They might grow in before corn on the cob



Bob Books

100 Easy Lessons, (occassionally)

SpellCity online

Birthday Cards to friends and family

Story narration

copy work



Beast Academy 3A (skip counting, multiplication tricks, hundreds charts)

Right Start B (mental addition, 5’s trick, 8’s trick, 9’s  trick, go to the dump, addition war, adding 2 digit numbers in head, place value)

Special Projects:

sewing (hand stitching and machine)



nature study (bird ID, bow drill, knife safety)



physical Education:


basket ball




Child’s History of the World–hunter/gatherers

Little House books

Timeline Inventions (the game)

Health Education:

Helping shop for and prepare balanced meals, physical and dental hygiene, garden help (growing your own food).



Wylie 2016/2017





Number the Stars


A Dog’s Purpose

Ham radio and short wave radio manuals


Beast Academy:  3C (multiplication and division) 3D (fractions)



Spellcity online

Independent story work

book report on A Dog’s Purpose



“Moving Beyond the Page” Unit Study on Number the Stars

“Moving Beyond the Page” Unit Study on WWI and WWII


Special Projects:

Radio Station Volunteer work

Nature Study (primitive skills, knife safety, bow drill)

Video and Audio production


knitting (hat, almost finished)

drumming, music, and dance


Wilderness First Responder Certification

Community First Aid Certification

Short Wave radio



Self-exploration of guitar and keyboard, sound engineering apprenticeship

Sound engineering apprenticeship






Health Education:  Discussions on the importance of physical and dental hygiene. Books on puberty and body changes (boys), Assisting in shopping and food prep of balanced meals.  Braces.




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