Atlanta Homeschool Is Taking a Break

Atlanta Homeschool is on hiatus

Atlanta Homeschool is officially on hiatus. 

When we started Atlanta Homeschool four years ago, we were brand-new homeschoolers excited to create a local resource that would be genuinely useful for families learning together in the Atlanta area. I like to think that we were mostly successful at doing that, and I’m proud that we were able to do it without relying on lots of sponsored posts or cluttering the site up with lots of advertising. It’s really been a labor of love to work on all these years, I’ve tried to convince myself that I have time to keep things going here while homeschooling a high schooler, teaching more online classes, and editing a homeschool magazine, but eventually, something has to give. For me, for now, that something is Atlanta Homeschool. I’d love to say we’ll be back, but who knows what the future holds? If you had told me ten years ago that I’d be homeschooling, much less homeschooling through high school, I would have thought you were crazy—and I’m hoping life has lots more crazy surprises in store for my future. So anything is possible, but I’m not setting any deadlines for myself. 

I’m so thankful to all of you who have been a part of Atlanta Homeschool over the years. If you want to stay in touch, you can always find me on the home/school/life magazine blog, on The Podcast with Suzanne and Amy, or via email. And if you’re looking for expert homeschool guidance, my personal homeschool guru (and awesome podcast co-host) Suzanne Rezelman does one-on-one consulting. She’s the first person I call when I have a homeschool question, especially now that her son has officially started at Georgia Tech. (You can email her to find out more.) And, of course, the archives here will be around for the foreseeable future.

Thanks so much for sharing this adventure with me!

September Homeschool Days

September Homeschool Days

What’s on your September to-do list? We’re getting excited about Atlanta’s Maker Faire (coming in October — and you can still sign up to be a maker!) and about officially starting our new school year. (Don’t forget to file your Declaration of Intent to Homeschool by September 1.) And we’re filling up our calendar with some of these September homeschool days:

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13 No-Cook Lunch Ideas for Summer Homeschooling

13 no-cook lunch ideas for summer homeschooling

When it’s too hot to cook, you want to avoid the stovetop at all costs. We’ve rounded up a handy batch of no-cooking-required recipes to keep your homeschool fed and happy without turning up the heat in the kitchen. Most of these are easily transportable, too, for picnics, al fresco readaloud snacks, and other summertime feeding on-the-go.

  1. Mashing the (canned) beans for a smashed white bean and avocado club only takes a minute, and then you can customize this quick sandwich according to everyone’s individual preferences.
  2. Canned salmon is the base for an easy salmon salad bento lunch, but you could certainly sub last night's leftovers from the grill.
  3. I love this take on fattoush salad—prep your jars in the morning, and then all you have to do is pull them out of the fridge at lunchtime.
  4. When you need to put a new spin on deli sandwiches, use that leftover roast beef to make Thai beef rolls.
  5. A good Tuna nicoise is my favorite summer salad—so of course I think everyone should try this picnic friendly sandwich version.
  6. Sweet, tart, and kind of unexpected, a couscous salad with cherries and arugula may be summer’s sleeper kitchen hit. (How to make no-cook couscous)
  7. Spiralizer fans take note: carrot ribbon pasta bowl with coconut-almond satay puts a lunchtime spin on carrot sticks and dip.
  8. There’s a good chance you already have everything you need to make arugula, apple, and chickpea salad wraps.
  9. They’re a bit fiddly, but if you don’t mind puttering around in the kitchen as long as it’s cool, make a batch of these veggie sushi rolls.
  10. It’s the speedy olive-red pepper condiment that gives muffuletta its distinctive taste. This version won’t be as good as the ones you’d get in New Orleans, but it’s an acceptable substitute on a hot Georgia afternoon.
  11. A torta is kind of like a burrito made with bread instead of a tortilla. You can stuff them with anything you want, but this Tijuana Torta, with black beans, salsa, and shredded cabbage, is a good place to start.
  12. This apple-herb club sandwich is just a little bit better—and hardly any more effort—than slapping stuff from deli bags onto sliced bread.
  13. A California Garden Roll tastes just like summer. (My kids like to dip it in a mustardy vinaigrette.) 

Best Bets: June 25-July 1

atlanta homeschool calendar

Looking for something to do? Our weekly roundup includes our picks for the best Atlanta homeschool adventures this week.

 

SATURDAY, JUNE 25 :: 

Get inspired at the Old Fourth Ward Arts Festival, where you can see all kinds of artwork, catch live music, and enjoy food from area vendors. FREE

 

SUNDAY, JUNE 26 ::

See the Gwinnett Braves play the Charlotte Knights—kids can play catch on the baseball field before the game and run the bases after it ends. $17 per person general admission

 

MONDAY, JUNE 27 ::

There’s almost always a breeze at Peachtree-Dekalb Airport Park thanks to the landings and takeoff at the neighboring airport—though like anywhere it Atlanta, it gets pretty hot by lunchtime. Kids can play on the aviation-themed playground and watch plans taking off and landing next door. FREE

 

TUESDAY, JUNE 28 ::

Take a Wild Cave Tour at Cloudland Canyon State Park, and explore the geology of cave formations and one of caves’ best known residents, the bat. Be prepared to climb, crawl, and get muddy. $30-60; minimum four people; $5 parking

 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 29 ::

Kids 12 and older who are comfortable swimming can learn the basics of stand-up paddle boarding at Sweetwater Creek State Park. (Paddleboard, personal floatation device, and paddle are provided.) $20 per person; $5 parking

 

THURSDAY, JUNE 30 ::

It’s a splurge, but if you loved Huckleberry Finn, you’ll want to see the bluegrass musical retelling Big River at Marietta’s Theatre on the Square. Prices vary

http://www.theatreinthesquare.net/show/big-river-the-musical/

 

FRIDAY, JULY 1 ::

What better way to celebrate Creative Ice Cream Flavors Day today than by treating everyone to a scoop or two? I’ve got my eye on the Honeycomb Forest or Honey-Lavender-Fig at Butter and Cream. Prices vary.

 


7 Things We Learned in June

Atlanta Homeschool : June roundup

If the coconut-jalapeno ice cream is on the menu at Morelli’s Ice Cream, someone is always going to want to order it—even though salted caramel is clearly the better choice. (We go to the one in Dunwoody.)

You get a bag of free money when you take a tour of the Atlanta Fed’s Monetary Museum. (OK, the cash is shredded, but a bag of money is always impressive.) The tour is free, too.

It is impossible to read Bridge to Terabithia out loud without crying. (Also the movie is better than I expected, even though the book is obviously superior.)

Painting tissue paper to make Eric Carle-esque art collages is surprisingly soothing. (Actually cutting out shapes and arranging them is hard, but painting the paper is awesome.) We’ve made quite a few trips to the Carle exhibition at the High this month to keep us inspired.

You can play the old-school version of Oregon Trail online. (And let’s face it, there is no better way to take in the sheer hazards that pioneers faced than by dying of dysentery three games in a row.)

If you’re looking for a new spot to take your nature walk, Decatur’s Glenn Creek Nature Preserve is a fantastic little corner of green space with a creek and lots of interesting plant life to sketch.

You can play 22 games of Adventure Time Munchkin and still not completely understand all the rules.


Best Bets: June 18-24

atlanta homeschool calendar

Looking for something to do? Our weekly roundup includes our picks for the best Atlanta homeschool adventures this week.

 

Saturday, June 18 :: 

Juneteenth is a great example of a pretty terrible event that became a symbol of hope and inspiration: Two and a half years after the Emancipation Proclamation, a group of Texas slaves found out they’d been freed and kicked off a celebration that continues to this day. Line up along the Juneteenth parade route (which runs from Mozley Park to Morris Brown College) before the action starts at noon. FREE

 

Sunday, June 19 :: 

Get tickets for Spirited Away at Midtown Art Cinema, Studio Ghibli’s Academy Award-winning animated film about a girl who finds herself working in a bathhouse for otherworldly creatures.

 

Monday, June 20 ::

Go Skateboard Day is Tuesday—if you’ve never had a chance to master the board, a beginner skateboard lesson at ChutingStar may be just what you need. $30 per hour for one skater, $40 per hour for two skaters

 

Tuesday, June 21 :: 

Learn more about Native American tools and their evolution over time at the Hardman Farm Historic Site’s one-day camp in Sautee Nacoochee. $30 per child; registration required

 

Wednesday, June 22 ::

Pike Nurseries has a cool kids’ class to help you plant a hummingbird and butterfly friendly garden. FREE

 

Thursday, June 23 ::

Rent a paddle boat, and spend a day exploring the Sweetwater Creek State Park waterways. (You can also snap a selfie in front of the mill, which appeared in The Hunger Games: Mockingjay.) $5 parking, boat rental prices vary

 

Friday, June 24 ::

If you’ve always wanted to try a family campout, here’s your chance to do it with a real park ranger on hand to help you out. The Great American Campout at Panola Mountain invites you to bring your gear for a night under the stars, with wilderness and basic camping programs throughout the evening. Obviously, there will be a campfire and s’mores, too. $10; $5 for parking


Our Favorite Resources for Nature Study

our favorite resources for homeschool nature study

Since summer is one of our favorite nature study season, we thought this would be the perfect time to round up some of our favorite nature study resources for homeschoolers. Most of these resources can work, with a little adaptation, for every age from preschool through high school, but of course you know your child best.

 

The Nature Connection Workbook

Why we love it: Some of us are born naturalists, but some of us are trying to incorporate more nature study into our kids’ lives because we wish we had more nature know-how ourselves. If you fall into that camp, you’ll appreciate the practical, easy-to-implement nature study activities in this workbook.

 

Peterson Young Naturalist Guides

Why we love them: Some field guides can feel intimidating or too simplified, but these strike just the right balance: enough specifics to be genuinely useful but not so much information that identification gets too complicated. And since you can find guides for everything from butterflies to backyard birds (my personal favorite), you can pick up new guides as your nature study uncovers new interests.

 

Handbook of Nature Study: Outdoor Hour Challenge

Why we love it: Every Friday, get inspired with a free outdoor hour challenge, designed to make your nature study focused and fun. Challenges are based off the Charlotte Mason classic, The Handbook of Nature Study by Anna Botsford Comstock. (If you love the challenges and want more, you can subscribe to the site library to access new Outdoor Hour challenges any time.)

 

Favorite Wildflower Walks in Georgia

Why we love it: Field trips don’t get any easier than this: Hugh and Carol Nourse highlight 20 can’t-miss wildflower hikes across the state, with detailed information on what to look for on your walk. 

 

Ranger-Led Hikes at Georgia State Parks

Why we love them: Rangers know all the cool trails—plus facts about local history, botany, geology, wildlife, and more.

 

Prank Star Microscope

Why we love it: When you’re out exploring, it’s so cool to be able to quickly take a closer look. This attachable lens fits right on your smart phone to magnify your object of interest up to 50 times its size. Sure, our regular microscope can offer even more detailed views, but this one gets a lot more use on nature walks.

 

Rite in the Rain Notebooks

Why we love it: Soggy pages aren’t a problem thanks to clever waterproofing in these field notebooks, so you can take your nature journal into the creek, the mud, or the rain without constantly trying to keep it dry.


 

 

Best Bets: June 11-17

Atlanta homeschool field trips

Looking for something to do? Our weekly roundup includes our picks for the best Atlanta homeschool adventures this week.

 

SATURDAY, JUNE 11 :: 

Sample lavender treats (the honey-lavender ice cream arrives at 4 p.m.) and celebrate the versatility of this fragrant herb at the Roswell Lavender Festival. FREE

 

SUNDAY, JUNE 12 :: 

The best thing about the Atlanta Street Food and Music Festival at Stone Mountain Park is that hiking up the mountain burns calories so that you can go back for seconds.  $15 per person in advance, $20 last-minute entry

 

 

MONDAY, JUNE 13 :: 

Find an urban oasis at the Big Trees Forest Preserve in Sandy Springs. Kids can play in the creek or relax in the shade with a good book. FREE

 

TUESDAY, JUNE 14 ::

Catch a special performance by members of the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra live at the Decatur Library. FREE

 

WEDNESDAY, JUNE 15 ::

Curious tweens can learn how to write a script and work a hand-held video camera at the Gresham Library’s Kids Video Connection. FREE, limited to 20 participants

 

THURSDAY, JUNE 16 :: 

Explore the quality of mercy at the Shakespeare Tavern Playhouse’s production of The Merchant of Venice, a complicated and engaging study of ethics and mercy set in 16th-century Venice. $20 per adult, $15 per student

http://www.shakespearetavern.com/index.php?/performances/show/merchant_june2016/

 

FRIDAY, JUNE 17 :: 

Bring your flashlight and explore the best trails of Cloudland Canyon on a two-mile hike at dusk. For ages 10 and older; headlamps provided. $10 per person, $5 for parking.