A Modern Famous Home Scholar

July 15, 2013 | Posted in Biography | By


Astra Taylor

In 2006 Filmmaker Magazine called Astra Taylor one of the “25 new faces to watch” in filmmaking. Taylor is a Canadian-American documentary filmmaker best known for her philosophically oriented films Zizek!, about the philosopher Slavov Zizek, and Examined Life, a series of on-the-move interviews with contemporary philosophers that attempts to make philosophy relevant to the man and woman on the street. Taylor grew up in Athens, Georgia and was unschooled (a child-guided variation of homeschooling) along with her three siblings. You can watch Taylor talk about her experience being unschooled at a recent lecture for The Walker Art Center. Taylor is married to Jeff Mangum of the popular indie rock band Neutral Milk Hotel.

Top 12 Things Home School Parents Need to Know About the SAT and ACT

July 11, 2013 | Posted in Classroom Help, Informative, Preparing for College | By

Written by Dr. Kuni Beasley
Taken from Practical Homeschooling Magazine #107
January/February/March 2013 Edition

1.  First Impression.  The more competitive the college, the more test scores are used to separate the GREAT students from the good students.

2. Use the SAT & ACT Websites.  (Collegeboard.org & ACT.org)  There is a 50-point difference on the SAT between students who use the website and those who don’t (out of 800 maximum points)!  For the ACT, there is a 5-point difference (of of 35 maximum points).  As a minimum, we recommend a thorough trip through the websites, including taking the practice questions.

3.  Not Academic Tests.  The PSAT, ACT & SAT are not academic tests.  They are tests of reasoning ability and problem-solving ability.  Until recently, the SAT published on their website that the SAT was a test of “Reasoning Ability”.  The ACT is not much different. Read more →

The Common Core Standards Are Here. Now. What Are They? What Do They Mean to Home Schoolers?

July 10, 2013 | Posted in Informative, Legislation, News, Preparing for College, Uncategorized | By

Taken from Practical Homeschooling Magazine #107
January/February/March 2013 Edition

“Despite three federal laws that prohibit federal departments or agencies from directing, supervising or controlling elementary and secondary school curricula, programs of instruction and instructional materials, the U.S. Department of Education…has placed the nation on the road to a national curriculum, according to a new report written by a former general counsel and former deputy general counsel of the U.S. Department of Education.”

So began a TruthInAmericanEducation.com story on the report The Road to a National Curriculum: The Legal Aspects of the Common Core Standards, Race to the Top, and Conditional Waivers.   Sponsored by Pioneer Institute, the Federalist Society, the American Principles Project, and the Pacific Research Institute of California, it was released in February 2012.

As the report itself goes on to say,

With only minor exceptions, the General Education Provisions Act, the Department of Education Organization Act, and the ESEA, a amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001, ban federal departments and agencies from directing, supervising, or controlling elementary and secondary school curriculum, programs of instruction, and instructional materials.

Left unchallenged by Congress, these standards and assessments will ultimately direct the course of elementary and secondary study in most states across the nation, running the risk that states will become little more than administrative agents for a nationalized K-12 program of instruction…

Who Are the Players? Read more →