Friday, March 28, 2008

Hello there!

Sorry I've been gone so long. I have had password "issues." Let's just hope that they're resolved now and I don't have to reset my password every time I want to log in. Eeek.

So much time has passed since I last blogged, I don't even know where to start. Easter was good. We took a 4-day weekend for Easter Break. Can I tell you that I love being able to call it Easter Break? LOL, all of our outside classes were taking Spring Break and while I acknowledge that it is indeed springtime, that's not the reason we took a break. We took a break because we were going out of town to spend Easter with some relatives. So, therefore, it was Easter break... and we're not even Christian, lol. It's the little things that make me happy. ;)

School has been very bipolar. We've had a very reliable schedule of one fantastic day followed by one cruddy day. I could set a calendar by it. I should just only plan on doing school Monday/Wednesday/Friday to plan for that, but then that would ensure that MWF were our bad days. (No really, I am an optimist!)

But let's see... we've made steady progress in Phonics, Grammar, and Math. Spelling has been done once a week, but I doubt that anything has been retained. I really need to get Cameron back in the habit of doing Spelling Time several times a week. For History we have read about the Minoans in SOTW and our History Encyclopedias. The kids have had a great time practicing bull-jumping. If they remember nothing else about the island of Crete, they will know that the children there did gymnastic vaults over live bulls. Of course, C&C were practicing over a padded rocking horse, but it sure was fun and yet, still dangerous! LOL. They also enjoyed the story of King Minos and the Minotaur. Cameron informed me that if he lived then there was no way he would have allowed that to happen. I love how powerful he feels. He really feels that he could change the world if he wanted to. Maybe someday he will. :)

Today we went to science class and they learned about optical illusions and a little bit about the eye. They made those little flippy cards where you put a cage on one side and a bird on the other. Cassia made a flower on one side and its petals on the other. I helped her with it but we didn't get it lined up too well. The teacher saw it and said that it looked like a picture of that Simpons character, Sideshow Bob. LOL. He was right. Cameron made a really cool one that was a treasure chest on one side and a dagger on the other. After class, the kids played this elaborate sword, shield and elf game again. They all get along really well. We left a little earlier than the kids would have liked so that we could at least spend a couple hours with our friends a Favorite Park day, but there were only a couple families there. And it was cold. And it started raining. Thankfully I didn't hear a single instance of "we should've stayed at R's house!!" but that's what I was thinking! So we came home to hot chocolate and a movie and now we have to go see if Cameron's baseball game is actually going to happen or not. It's sprinkling, but who knows how hard core they are with rain. It's only game #3.

...And the answer is, Little League is pretty hard core!! The game went on despite intermittent showers and then it was pouring during the entire 4th inning. All the parents were complaining but the coach said as long as the kids weren't complaining that they were playing! They finally called it at the end of the 4th inning after almost an hour and a half (regulation game time). Crazy people!! LOL. We have another game tomorrow morning. I hope it's not still raining then.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Super-Productive Day vs Barely Functioning Day

Super-Productive Day
Tuesday started with an early morning trip to the pediatrician which got us up dressed and ready to go much earlier than usual. When we were leaving the pharmacy, Cameron asked if it was almost night, lol, but we were home and ready for school by 10:30 am! So Cameron did Phonics (contractions) and Language/Grammar (writing dates properly) and then I asked him if he wanted to do Math or History. He said "Science!" I told him that I had decided to take a little break from our science book while he was in that science class but he reminded me that there is no science class this week because of Easter!

He was quite insistent so we dusted off the MPH Science and finished reading the chapter on water and its changes of state. He was all excited to do the associated workbook pages and even did the writing himself! We did at least 4 pages of workbook and he thoroughly impressed me with his knowledge and memory of the subject. The activities in the the Activity Book all required a lab thermometer (which I still haven't gone out to buy!) so instead we did a "try this" activity that was listed in the text and expanded on it a bit. We filled 3 containers with equal amounts of water and added a heaping tablespoon of sugar to one and a heaping tablespoon of salt to another. We then put them in the freezer and charted their progress every half hour. It was actually really fun and the kids were so excited to check each time the timer went off. The were also really surprised to see how differently they all acted.

Once we finished off all the science stuff for that chapter I said, "Math now?" to which Cameron replied, "No, History!" Even when I reminded him that he would still have to do math afterward, he emphatically voted for History. So we read Chapter 17 in SOTW on the rise of Babylon under Nebuchadnezzar and the Hanging Garden. It's so funny, sometimes I'll think he's not listening and then all of a sudden he'll pipe up with, "Oh I know about this! I saw it on Time Warp Trio!!" I had no idea that the Hanging Gardens of Babylon were featured on Time Warp Trio, but he was right! And then we did Math (multiplying by 4s) and there was nothing too exciting about that except that he didn't even complain or dawdle too much. It was a very good school day. Oh and Cassia learned the lines for X in The Consonant Rhyme.

Barely Functioning Day
And then there was today. So today was supposed to be a relaxing catch up kind of day because we didn't have anywhere to be. Woo Hoo! So after a leisurely morning, I announced that I was going to go get cleaned up and dressed, we would do schoolwork, and then we would tidy up the house for DH's arrival tomorrow. It was close to 11:00 by this time, lol, so they had plenty of time to play and enjoy themselves all morning. I had also given a big "heads up" to the daily plans when we first got up. So yeah. Let's just say that nothing went the way it was supposed to and I ended up putting the school books away in a hormonal huff, picking up all the toys around the house by myself, piling them on the dining room table, and announcing that anything that wasn't put away by the time I was done vacuuming was being thrown away.

So the house got clean.

Later, after Greyson finally went down for a nap we were all a bit calmer and I brought out the books again. This time went much better but there sure was a lot of moping, bellyaching, and general complaining from the Peanut Gallery. But we did Phonics (more contractions), Grammar/Language (reviewed Mr. Nobody but skipped the date writing copywork), Math (more 4 x tables), and read our history encyclopedia entries on Babylon. Cameron must be growing up because there was a picture of an alabaster statuette of Ishtar and he bursts out with, "Look! A naked lady!!" We've seen lots of naked people in our studies so far, but this is the first time it's been pointed out in quite that way. Cassia will go into her room to change her clothes now because she doesn't want anyone to see her naked. Hmmm. I guess they're growing up.

Anyway, we were all just wanting to get it done as quickly as possible so that we could get back to less annoying pursuits. Not my perfect homeschool vision. Oh well. Tomorrow is another day. Isn't it great that you always get another day to do things over? :)

Monday, March 17, 2008

Entirely too long post

Gosh, I'm such a slacker! What is up with me not being motivated to blog lately?? I have good stuff to show you too! Who abducted my brain? Oh yes, it was Blobby. ;) And for the record, we will find out if it is Blobby or Blobbi in about 6 more weeks, I'm guessing. I don't have a date yet, but I'm 14 weeks now and the "big ultrasound" is usually around 20 wks. DH says the u/s picture looks like a boy face to him. I think that little one looks like sugar and spice and everything nice. Anyone care to place a bet? I should put an official poll on the sidebar.

Anyway, for one of the first times ever, I'm going to actually have to look at my lesson planner/log to remember what we did to blog! Usually my planner is what's not up to date and I have to read my blog to fill that in.

Wednesday: Wednesday was a quiet, catch up day at home. Cameron did Spelling (s blends), Phonics (two-syllable review), Language/Grammar (review Mr. Nobody), Math (subtracting 98 or 99 from a number), and History (Assyria's Ashurbanipal and the Nineveh library). I can't remember anything remarkable that we did besides that.

Thursday: Ballet started the day and there was something remarkable that I do remember. We were running a bit late so I told everyone to hustle - and they DID! We made it out the door in plenty of time. Wow, what a difference when you actually have cooperation! LOL, it really is the little things that make my day.

You know, that actually reminds me of an article that I read in a local homeschool magazine, California HomeSchooler. It said that there were many ways to define success and that if you depend on external verification of your successes then you are bound to be disappointed by them at some point. They (things like degrees and awards) represent things you have done in the past and also require other people to be impressed by their meaning. People's views may change and your ability to still do those things may change... does that mean you are no longer a success? A better option, they said, was to define your own internal measure of success based on integrity, authenticity, acceptance & adaptability (resourcefulness), and purpose. The author said that people who seem genuinely happy possess these traits and feel successful regardless of their current circumstances. (Apparently, the entire article "Four Elements of Success" can be read at the author's blog though I haven't actually gone there.) I know that I don't completely possess all those qualities, and even where I do, I don't possess them to the extent that I feel that I could/should BUT I can definitely see the value in them. And I definitely look at my life with that sort of a measure. My DH has every degree and every award he's ever received hanging on his wall. I never even bothered to request a copy of my University degree, lol. It's just a piece of paper after all and I have enough clutter around here. ;)

But I digress. Thursday was actually a great day scholastically. Cam did more two-syllable word review in Phonics and read a passage whose length he was sure would literally kill him. ;) For Language/Grammar we reviewed Mr. Nobody again and Cameron surprised me by knowing almost all of it. Then I read them a poem called The Star by Jane Taylor. Go read it if you're not familiar with this poem. I guarantee you'll be surprised! Then Cameron drew a picture inspired by the poem and copied the first stanza. It was quite a bit of writing for him (especially since I was a Mean Mommy and made him actually form all the letters correctly without any silly embellishments) so he would basically write one line in between each subject. Here is the final result:

Math was a review exercise. For History we read about the Assyrians in our history encyclopedias and then - get ready - actually did a couple of history projects!! There were two in the SOTW Activity guide that sounded fun so I did what any good homeschooling parent of more than one would do and assigned different projects to different kids based on what I thought they would enjoy most and get the most out of. Cameron made a Assyrian siege tower out of LEGOs and then attacked the castle in our history encyclopedia and then a LEGO castle that he and Cassia made, lol.

Cassia made a book for Ashubanipal's library in Nineveh. (Picture a smile somewhere in between the first one and the last, lol.)

It was a great day for school and I followed it up with something I didn't really think I would ever do.... I dropped Cameron off for baseball practice. It was cold and windy and I just plain didn't want to sit out there in the cold for an hour watching Greyson dissolve into shivers while Cassia kept begging to take her jacket off. I'm sick of people being sick so I opted for the easy route and dropped Cam off at the edge of the playground and popped Dora Dance To the Rescue into the minivan's DVD player where we sat in warmth to wait. I feel like a slacker and a hypocrite for all the things I think about the moms who normally just drop off their kids, lol, but it was COLD. (Yes, I know I wouldn't survive one day in the might-as-well-be-arctic Midwest.)

Friday: Now I know Friday is normally Favorite Park Day and doesn't usually get blogged but last week we started something new: a really super fun Science class! The teacher is one of those traveling science guys who does workshops and programs for schools, rec centers, and homeschoolers. A local homeschooler decided to hire him to come to her house and give lessons to a group of no more than 10 kids for 10 weeks!! It's really hands-on fun stuff and although I had only signed Cameron up for the class, I let Cassia sit in and within five minutes it was obvious that I needed to sign her up too. The teacher is great and we all (even the parents) learned a lot. This week's lesson was on magnetism and they each got a bunch of magnets, paper clips, and ball bearings to take home to experiment with. Afterward, several of the kids stayed and played Epic Castle Warfare Battle* (*not a real game, lol, but an epic battle involving many children and many plastic swords and shields). I tell you, it was hard to drag those kiddos away from there to go to the park! But we made it there too and, as always, were glad we didn't miss it. There we had an adventure to hunt down a golden treasure which ended in a stand-up comedy showcase in a gazebo. Let me tell you, six-year humor is universal! (Universally bad, that is.) Phew! Busy day!

Saturday: Saturday was Cameron's very first Little League game. *sniff sniff* They looked so cute! I was so proud! Unfortunately, I didn't get any pictures. The one wonderfully amazing thing that did happen - besides the kids playing extraordinarily well for being the first game of a brand new team - was that Cameron got to hold the American flag while everyone sang the National Anthem during the opening ceremony. Want to know how to make a proud pregnant momma cry? That's how. It was actually quite funny - DH didn't realize that the kids were supposed to stay with the team and go out on the field during the ceremony so he had Cameron with him in the stands. Well, the boy who was supposed to hold the flag wasn't there for some reason so this lady just came out, saw a cute kid in uniform and said, "Hey kid, want to hold the flag for us?" LOL, he was thrilled to do so. If you remember, he carried a flag in a 4-H parade last year and it's just one of his all-time favorite things to do. They really couldn't have picked a more enthusiastic volunteer. He even started waving it around proudly after the song when everyone was clapping. I really wish I had had my camera.

Monday: And that brings us, finally, to today. For school Cameron did Spelling (y as a vowel), Phonics (possessive 's), Language/Grammar (Mr. Nobody review and an oral narration of The Boy Who Cried Wolf), and Math (multiplication by 4s). Cassia has also been doing Phonics every day and is all the way up to "W" in The Consonant Rhyme. We've actually almost got a little routine down where we do her phonics while Cameron works on his spelling or math. The trouble is that Cameron likes to join in on her lessons too and doesn't really get his own work done in that time. But it's ok. I think it makes them both more excited to do it. I'm really nervous about next year though when I'm going to have to make a real effort to get her schooled every day - and hopefully in more than one subject at a time, lol. And with a newborn too!

And that is my entirely too long catch up post. I promise to try to be more regular so I don't have to bore you with these epic sagas. The mundane details of my life are much easier to take in small doses, I'm sure. ;) But hey, you know what? Based on my internal definitions, my life is a success... so there! :P

Friday, March 14, 2008

Meet BlobbyBerm - part II

♥ Finally got around to scanning this in from Monday...

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Roughing it!

Things are going well here. Lots going on...

Saturday our water heater started leaking. Just so you know, that's a bad thing. We attempted drainage pans for a while, but quickly gave up on that thought. So now we are just plain without hot water until our new solar water heating system can be delivered... in April. Sure, we could've had a replacement put in on Monday but when you've gotta redo everything you might as well do it right, right? This system is so cool. It is everything we were hoping for and more. If anyone wants more info I'd be happy to ramble on about it... but not right now, lol. So the good news is that even though it is pretty pricey, we are getting a hefty tax refund that will completely cover it and still leave us with a couple K in our pocket. The exciting news is that we will be one of the first in the US to get this system! They've been using it in Europe for decades but it's just making its way over here now... which leads to the bad news. They can't even ship it until April 1st so were looking at an install maybe the 3rd or 4th. But we've been surviving by boiling water on the stove for dishes and laundry and have been making good use out of our solar camp shower. The kids actually really love the "sun shower" as they call it. So we should be just fine roughing it for a couple weeks.

So what else? Monday I went for my integrated screening which included a really, really long ultrasound. The little bugger wouldn't get into the right position for the test so we just had to wait and prod and wait. Ah, but I am so in love! Blobby was just wiggling around, kicking, twirling, and sucking his/her thumb. Did you know that they are already sucking their thumbs at 13 weeks? I got a fabulous picture but, of course, I haven't scanned it in yet. Everything looks great - two arms, two legs, etc. It was such a cool ultrasound though. It was a really high quality machine and I got lots of nice long looks at Blobby's skull, brain, ribs, spine, and those cute little hands. It's just amazing. Life is a true miracle.

Today, Tuesday, we had a 4-H meeting. It was the "boring meeting" so there's not much to report on from there. Oh Cameron did volunteer to head up a community service project in which we hand out money to all the poor people who need it on the side of the road. I tried to explain to him that there were just too many people out there to do that but he said that we could just give money to one person then and then when the club gets some more money we can give it to another and so on. So sweet. So idealistic. Anyway, he was given this project so I think it is now up to me to help him figure out a more practical way to help the poor and homeless. We have a great homeless shelter here so I guess we really need to call them to see what we can do to help.

Also at the meeting we judged posters for our yearly 4-H fundraiser known as Chickenque. Here's Cam's...

The younger kids' work wasn't actually judged, they all got ribbons, but I did hear several people comment on how cute his was. Maybe I'm just biased, but I agree.

And that's about it lately except for the usual gymnastics and baseball. We haven't actually gotten around to any bookwork this week but Cameron did spend about 45 minutes this morning playing Timez Attack. So that's math and we certainly learned a lot about solar energy on Monday, so there's science. Oh and Cameron read the little tag on the back of his 4-H ribbon and insisted on filling it out with his name, entry, and ranking so let's call that Language Arts. We can throw a couple bedtime stories into that group too. OK, school is accounted for. Now I need to go boil some water for dishes. Oh joy.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

In lighter news...

So I realize that I haven't updated in a while. Sorry for that. My days just seem so short now! Once I finally make it through the day, I'm just ready to crash in front of the tv and my poor blog has become neglected. When did I find time to blog before? I guess it was while I was cooking dinner and lately my dinner cooking has been less than gourmet, lol. Tonight it was "baked" potatoes in the microwave. Last night it was pizza (at least I did make it from semi scratch - Trader Joe's dough). The night before bean burritos. So when is the first trimester fatigue over??

So let's recap the week...

Monday: I was supposed to have an OB appointment in the morning but it got rescheduled due to an emergency c-section. She sure seems to get a lot of those! I hope these aren't all her patients or I may have to find someone less scalpel happy! I finally got in at around 5:30 pm. She couldn't find the heartbeat with the Doppler so we had to go check things out with a quick u/s. Darn. ;) Little Blobby was rabbit kicking around in there like a hyper little Berm babe should. So much for my theory that I'm due a mellow child this time around. I go for a NT scan next Monday. I wasn't actually planning on this particular test. I'm not going to have an amnio unless there is a DAMN GOOD reason for it - as in something that is fixable in utero or something that must be dealt with right at birth - so I didn't see much point in this particular test. I was told that I was being scheduled for a Quad Screen. I figured this was just another layer to the Triple Screen that I've had for all my other kids (blood test correlating with 20-wk u/s). I didn't realize that the fourth layer was the NT scan. But, in researching it, I found out that it can identify cardiac problems and that is definitely something I would want to know about. So I go in for that ultrasound Monday morning.

School was squished in before gymnastics. Cameron did phonics which included some whiteboard writing. Whiteboard writing always leads to cursive practice but I have no idea why, lol. He just loves practicing cursive on the whiteboard! I call it a bonus subject. But this bonus subject meant that he only had time to finish half of his math assignment (1 of 2 pages) before we left for the gym. Once we got back we "did Science" by watching the new Discovery Channel series The Human Body: Pushing the Limits. What a great show! Make sure you check it out this Sunday if you haven't seen it yet.

Tuesday was the day of our 4-H EcoArts project so we definitely did not have time for bookwork. Cameron did manage to finish up that second page of math but that was it. For EcoArts we made homemade finger paint! The kids mixed up 1/2 cup flour and 2 cups water and I then thickened it on the stove. We then put it into little containers (old spice jars that I had lying around - reduce, reuse, recycle!) and then the kids added food coloring to get the color they wanted. We got some great shades. Luckily it was a nice day so we took it outside to the garden and the kids really had a blast painting away. Even Cameron, who did not want to do it because he hates getting his hands dirty, gave it a try and really enjoyed himself. He made a green rainbow with a green happy face under it, lol. Perfect for St. Patrick's Day! After that we had to rush home for baseball practice where everyone had a great time. Cassia has a little 3-1/2 yr old friend there and they just have the greatest time together. I think they're both just so happy to have another girl to play with in the midst of all those boys! We finished off the day with another episode of The Human Body. This one on strength.

Wednesday: Finally a non-rushed day! We did Phonics, Spelling, Grammar, Math, and History! Grammar was fun. We've been learning this funny poem called Mr. Nobody. It's quite a challenge compared to the other poems we've learned because there are three stanzas and many of the words and phrasings are poetic. But they're doing a great job with it!! They both have stanza one down and Cassia is halfway to knowing stanza two as well. For History we read about the Phoenicians in The Ancient Israelites and Their Neighbors. What a fun book that is! If I ever get another Amazon gift certificate as a gift, I think I might pick up that whole series. They have a good balance of history told in an easy-to-read way and fun projects.

Thursday: Today we had stuff to do, but it didn't seem crazy. We started with ballet and then came home to schoolwork. We did Phonics (oh Cassia has been doing Phonics all week too! She's really into it now), Grammar (more Mr. Nobody), Math, and some more reading in Ancient Israelites and Their Neighbors. Today we read about their clothing, exports, and their alphabet. Cameron finished off with writing his and Cassia's names in both Egyptian Hieroglyphics and Phoenician letters. Then video games. Then baseball. Then dinner. Then bed.

Then blog. Then tv. Then bed.

Tomorrow is Favorite Park day so you know I won't get around to blogging. Send some positive energy or some prayers (whichever you are inclined) to the homeschooling community here in California. Ugh, I just don't even want to think about it anymore because it puts my stomach in knots. Ok, revision to my above list: blog, tv & chocolate pudding, then bed. ;)


I'm sure you've all heard about this by now, but in case you haven't...

Here is a news article from today's (3/6/08) LA TIMES regarding this story.,1,4399394.story?ctrack=1&cset=true

Ruling seen as a threat to many home-schooling families

State appellate court says those who teach children in private must have a credential.
By Seema Mehta and Mitchell Landsberg, Los Angeles Times Staff Writers
March 6, 2008

Parents who lack teaching credentials cannot educate their children at home, according to a state appellate court ruling that is sending waves of fear through California's home schooling families.

Advocates for the families vowed to appeal the decision to the state Supreme Court. Enforcement until then appears unlikely, but if the ruling stands, home-schooling supporters say California will have the most regressive law in the nation.

- Read and talk about education

"This decision is a direct hit against every home schooler in California," said Brad Dacus, president of the Pacific Justice Institute, which represents the Sunland Christian School, which specializes in religious home schooling. "If the state Supreme Court does not reverse this . . . there will be nothing to prevent home-school witch hunts from being implemented in every corner of the state of California."

The institute estimates there are as many as 166,000 California students who are home schooled. State Department of Education officials say there is no way to know the true number.

Unlike at least 30 other states, home schooling is not specifically addressed in California law. Under the state education code, students must be enrolled in a public or private school, or can be taught at home by a credentialed tutor.

The California Department of Education currently allows home schooling as long as parents file paperwork with the state establishing themselves as small private schools, hire credentialed tutors or enroll their children in independent study programs run by charter or private schools or public school districts while still teaching at home.

California does little to enforce those provisions and insists it is the local school districts' responsibility. In addition, state education officials say some parents home school their children without the knowledge of any entity.

Home schoolers and government officials have largely accepted this murky arrangement.

"This works so well, I don't see any reason to change it," said J. Michael Smith, president of the Virginia-based Home School Legal Defense Assn.

The appellate court ruling stems from a case involving Lynwood parents Phillip and Mary Long, who were repeatedly referred to the Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services over various allegations, including claims of physical abuse, involving some of their eight children.

All of the children are currently or had been enrolled in Sunland Christian School, where they would occasionally take tests, but were educated in their home by their mother, Phillip Long said.

A lawyer appointed to represent two of the Long's young children requested that the court require them to physically attend a public or private school where adults could monitor their well-being. A trial court disagreed, but the children's lawyer appealed to the 2nd District Court of Appeal, which has jurisdiction over Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.

The appellate panel ruled that Sunland officials' occasional monitoring of the Longs' home schooling -- with the children taking some tests at the school -- is insufficient to qualify as being enrolled in a private school. Since Mary Long does not have a teaching credential, the family is violating state laws, the ruling said.

"Parents do not have a constitutional right to home school their children," wrote Justice H. Walter Croskey in a Feb. 28 opinion signed by the two other members of the district court. "Parents who fail to [comply with school enrollment laws] may be subject to a criminal complaint against them, found guilty of an infraction, and subject to imposition of fines or an order to complete a parent education and counseling program."

Phillip Long said he believes the ruling stems from hostility against Christians and vowed to appeal to the state Supreme Court.

"I have sincerely held religious beliefs," he said. "Public schools conflict with that. I have to go with what my conscience requires me."

Public schools teach such topics as evolution, which Long said he doesn't believe in. He said his wife spends six hours each day teaching their children reading, writing, math, science, health, physical education, Bible and social studies. Court papers say Mary Long's education ended at 11th grade.

It's unclear if the ruling will be enforced, given the likely appeals. Typically, these rulings take effect 30 days after they are issued.

Other organizations that plan to get involved include the Pacific Justice Institute, Home School Legal Defense Assn. and the Home School Assn. of California.

Meanwhile, state Department of Education's attorneys are reviewing the ruling.

Teachers union officials will also be closely monitoring the appeal. A.J. Duffy, president of United Teachers Los Angeles, said he agrees with the ruling.

"What's best for a child is to be taught by a credentialed teacher," he said.

While many educators and officials remained unfamiliar with the ruling Tuesday, news about it has been sweeping websites and blogs devoted to home schooling. Organizations have been getting tense phone calls from parents worried that they will be targeted.

Families who home school includethose whose religious beliefs conflict with public schools and those whose children are in the entertainment industry or have other time-consuming activities that require them to study at an individualized pace.

Glenn and Kathleen, a Sacramento-area couple who requested that their last name not be used for fear of prosecution, home school their 9-year-old son Hunter because their Christian beliefs would be contradicted in a public school setting, Glenn said. He is troubled by the idea that his son would be exposed to teachings about evolution, homosexuality, same-sex marriage and sex education .

"I want to have control over what goes in my son's head, not what's put in there by people who might be on the far left who have their own ideas about indoctrinating kids," he said.

If the ruling takes effect, Glenn vowed to move his family out of state. "If I can't home school my son in California, we're going to have to end up leaving California. That's how important it is to me."

And the HSLDA response...

This is the HSLDA response:
Response to Ruling of California Court of Appeal
‘Homeschooling is Illegal in California’

On February 28, 2008, the California Court of Appeals issued a ruling in a juvenile court proceeding that declared that almost all forms of homeschooling in California are in violation of state law. (Private tutoring by certified teachers remains an option.) Moreover, the court ruled that parents possess no constitutional right to homeschool their children.

This family was not a member of Home School Legal Defense Association. They were represented by court-appointed counsel throughout the proceeding. Since it was by law a confidential proceeding, to the best of our knowledge neither HSLDA nor any other legal advocacy organization had any knowledge that the right of all homeschoolers in California was depending upon the outcome of this family’s case.

There are two appellate options at this time.

First, we have been told that the family is appealing this decision to the California Supreme Court with their California counsel.

HSLDA will file an amicus brief on behalf of our 13,500 member families in California. We will argue that a proper interpretation of California statutes makes it clear that parents may legally teach their own children under the private-school exemption. However, if the court disagrees with our statutory argument, we will argue that the California statutes as interpreted by the Court of Appeal violate the constitutional rights of parents to direct the education and upbringing of their children.

HSLDA welcomes other organizations and persons to assist with the amicus process so that a full defense of home education, religious freedom, and parental rights can be given to the California Supreme Court.

The second appellate option is to seek to have this particular decision “depublished.” Depublication is a decision that can only be made by the California Supreme Court. If the Court determines that the decision should stand, regarding this family, on the facts presented, but that the general pronouncements of law for all of homeschooling should not be determined by this case, then the Court has the option of “depublishing” the Court of Appeal’s decision. This would mean that the case is not binding precedent in California and has no effect on any other family.

HSLDA will take the lead in an effort to seek to have this case depublished.

Homeschooling has offered a great opportunity for families to give their children a quality education with a moral and philosophical approach that is consistent with each family's beliefs.

The ability to homeschool freely in California should not depend upon one family in a closed-door proceeding. All families should have the right to be heard since the rights of all are clearly at stake.

Can I throw up now? So... who's ready for a fight? (And please forgive the copyright violations - I did source them - but apparently I'm the criminal type.)