The information below is from the May 2016 WPA Conference.
Stay tuned for information on upcoming events.
A Workshops (Saturday, 8:45-9:55 am)
A-1 Homeschooling 101
Pamela Roland–Just getting started on your homeschooling journey? Wondering if homeschooling would be a good choice for your family? An overview of what is required to begin homeschooling, what homeschooling is about, and how it differs from conventional schooling. Where to find support and learning resources. How to connect with other homeschoolers. Giving yourself permission to make mistakes and changes.
A-2 Homeschooling Children of Different Ages
Lori Guilliams–How do you keep your sanity while keeping up with curriculums, lesson plans, and records for several children of different ages? How do you know you’re covering everything? Why are multiple ages an asset to teaching and learning in a family? Benefits of children helping younger siblings and participating in family chores. Workshop includes time for questions and discussion. Speaker is an experienced mother of 6.
A-3 Creating and Maintaining a Literature (Lit) Group
Tamara Bryant–Reading and thinking about great literature can be a transformational experience. Learn how one homeschooling mother helped form a literature group of six youth and two parents in 2010 and how this group has developed over the past six years. How can you begin your own group? What’s a good meeting format? How to think about selecting literary works, facilitate discussions, and encourage open sharing via discussions and writing.
A-4 Rural Homeschooling: You Are Not Alone–A Presentation Followed by Discussion
Kim Suske–Find support for homeschooling when fellow homeschoolers are few and far between. Discussion topics will include finding other homeschoolers, finding support groups, starting and maintaining a new group, and helping your kids find friends. Rural homeschooling has unique benefits and resources that you may not have considered.
A-5 A Christian Faith-Based Answer to Burnout
Cindy White–Many people experience homeschool burnout. Tweaking your schedule and rethinking lesson plans can offer a short term burst of energy, but hear from an experienced Evangelical Christian homeschooling mother—with over 25 years of experience homeschooling 11 children—how she has solved her burnout by seeking and trusting in the promises of God.
A-6 Work at Home as a Medical Transcriptionist
Deborah Burns–A homeschooling mom shares the ins and outs of working at home as a medical transcriptionist. The presenter is a recruiter and will share information specific to the company that she works for. Teens and parents can learn how to enroll in a medical transcription program with this national service. The presenter will talk about earning potential, computers and software, transcription equipment, how to get hands-on work experience, and more.
A-7 Tools for Earning Money and Surviving in Today’s Economy
Larry Kaseman–Facing the realities of today’s economy and the future. Identifying and developing skills you will need to earn money. Developing contacts and networking effectively. Writing resumes that show accomplishments. Getting and using effective letters of recommendation. Creating informal apprenticeships. Writing income producing proposals. Preparing for and nailing job interviews.
A-8 Family Relationships: A Key to Homeschooling
Susan Kaseman–Strengthening parent-child relationships by improving communication; spending time together, including one-on-one; and using alternatives to praise and rewards. Meeting your needs and your kids’ needs at the same time. Accepting realities about homeschooling. Keeping your relationship with your spouse a priority while also taking care of yourself.
A-9 Free Software—10 Programs You Need to Know About
Scott Lynch–An overview of some of the best free software available to accomplish a wide range of tasks. Find out where to find it, why some software is free, and how free programs compare to commercial software. Emphasis will be on software for Mac, Windows, and Linux computers, but apps for mobile devices will be touched on. How to determine for yourself if a free program is best for you, or if you are better served by a commercially available one.
A-10 The Importance of Failure to the Success of Unschooling
Becky Powers–An unschooling parent explores why it is important for children to struggle through challenges in a supportive environment. As parents, we also struggle and fail at times. How can parents trust themselves, not by looking to outside experts, but through trial, error, and building knowledge and wisdom? What can these experiences teach us about solving our own problems and strengthening our families?
A-11 Teen Icebreakers, Games, and Conversation
Olivia Landowski, Abbie Holter, Ruby Jung–Join a group of homeschooling teens for icebreakers and other games and informal conversation.
A-12 Build WPA’s Third LEGO® City
John and Sylvia Peine–Construct buildings and vehicles for a huge city. Watch the LEGO city grow during the conference. Learn about architecture, geometry, spatial relations, city planning, and more. Separate area where younger children can build with larger DUPLOs. All materials provided. Children younger than 12 must be accompanied by a responsible older person.
A-13 Let’s Fly Paper Airplanes
Jennifer L.W. Fink–Learn to make and fly several different airplanes. Experiment with changes in design and how they affect flight. Fly your planes with other young aviators.
A-14 Chess & Checkers Challenge
John and A.J. Mutchie–Bring your game boards and pieces, meet other homeschoolers, and make new friends while playing these old favorites just for fun. Or join the friendly tournament during the workshop. No presentation or instruction. All ages and skill levels welcome.
A-15 Dramatizing Fables and Nursery Rhymes
Katie Guilliams–Join the fun! Groups will draw the title of a nursery rhyme or fable and an attribute (like use British accents, include singing, etc.) and plan a performance to present to the whole group. Designed for teens but younger children and parents also welcome.