Sunday, November 14, 2010

Carol of the Bells by Junior High and High School Choir

Performance of Carol of the Bells by the Choir classes, along with flag routines by Stephanie Fink and Lydia Leach, and Irish Dancing by Aaron Dhooghe. Teachers: Laurie Hilliard and Yvonne Flowers.

Modern Dance Fall 2010

This is the Modern Dance Class performing New York, New York for the Evening of Enrichment November 2010. Teacher: Lesa Lovejoy.

Kindergarten - 3rd grade Choir Fall 2010

Here is a video of the K-3 Choir class performing for the Fall 2010 Evening of Enrichment. Teacher: Tess Hough.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Advanced Flags and Rifles

Here is the Evening of Enrichment performance of the Advanced Flags and Rifles class from November 2010.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Robotics Team WINS!

The TEACH Robotics team (consisting of David Dhooghe, Sam Hatch, Craig Bell, Peter Dhooghe, Arthur Hatch, and Liam Dhooghe) went to the DC BEST robotics contest last weekend, the twelfth year they have entered this contest. The kids competed against 13 other teams, some representing large high schools in the area. Our team was the only homeschool group present. All teams had only six weeks to build and test the robot.

And our team won the contest!

The next stop is the state contest (Texas BEST). We need people to come cheer us on! The contest starts at 8 am on Saturday, Nov. 20, and will be held at the UNT Coliseum. Admission is free, and you are welcome to come and go as you need. The day should be over around 5 pm. We can bring paper banners and posters to hang up.

Contact Diana Hatch for more information.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Homeschooling High School

There just seems to be something bothering you. It has been a great day at homeschooling. Everyone is doing well. You are all enjoying being with each other and working together. What is that shadow you feel? Your oldest is in 8th grade, he enjoys learning. He loves to explain to his younger siblings what he has learned. The dinner table is full of conversation about Egypt, current events, and how a tree grows. Isn’t this the picture of the perfect home school family? Why then do you hesitate, why do you turn to look over your shoulder as though something were coming? You actually stop one day and turn. Today you know you will look behind you and catch that shadow. You turn and you gasp. Your eyes widen in fear. There it is… you know now what has brought that feeling of dread – it stands before you huge, daunting, confusing –it is High School!

Ever felt that way? Ever looked toward teaching your children high school and panicked? Don’t. You don’t have to. You CAN home school high school! Here are a few suggestions to help you on your way.

1st How do you know what subjects to teach in high school?

Texas has fairly broad rules governing home schools.  Check out the requirements at HSLDA.   As home schoolers, we do not have to use the public school’s curriculum or scope/sequence but that doesn’t mean we can’t use it to guide us or at least reassure us. The Texas Education Agency has a list of required course work to graduate . The site lists 3 graduation levels: minimum, recommended and distinguished achievement. These lists do not have to followed verbatim but they can give you the assurance that you are on the right track or answer that question you had about a certain subject.

You can also peruse websites for private Christian schools - many list their textbook requirements by grade level. Another great source are established home school curriculums such as ABeka. What are they teaching in high school? Again, let this be a guide not a mandatory list.

As home schoolers we have a great opportunity to add to the core academic curriculum. Does my son have an interest in welding? Is my daughter interested in art? (Stereotypical, I know, sorry.) We have a great opportunity to provide for our children’s growth in their area of interest.

2nd How can I teach all these subjects?

Find the curriculum that meets your needs. Add to the curriculum with outside helps.

Look within your home school community. Is someone offering to teach algebra or economics? What can you offer to teach?

Juniors and seniors can attend college under the dual-credit system. Contact the college and find out more. Ask what the requirements are for enrollment as a dual-credit student. Don’t forget to ask about scholarships. Some students take their full academic load at the college for these years. Others supplement their home school curriculum with higher maths or sciences. Still others take opportunity of the liberal arts: choir, art, drama.

3nd Lets make a family plan.

Begin with a 4-year plan. When will they take what subject at your Family Academy? What year will you add biology? What about SAT testing? Put it on the plan. Don’t forget Driver’s Education if you want them to have a permit at 15. Put it all on paper. Then realize you might have to change it. Remember to be flexible.

Think it through. Every child should be college ready. They may or may not choose to attend but you should prepare them to the best of their ability to be ready to attend. But let’s be realistic, some of our children will choose not to attend. What should be put in your plan to ready them for the work force, the military, or in the home?

4th Time to document – make a high school transcript.

When you begin high school, start tracking on a ledger or computer document what your student is doing each semester, including curriculum and grades earned, extra-curricular activities, volunteer work, achievements and awards.  This will make the creation of your formal transcript much simpler at the end of high school!

Google “high school transcript.” (I am sure that is a legal verb today.) You will find lots of samples. Choose one that fits your need. Colleges will want a notarized copy. This just means find a sample of a notary signature form and put at the bottom of the transcript. Again let Google do your work: “notary statement.” Make sure your transcript has a place for SAT and other test scores and total credits earned.

Don’t forget to include the extras , as well as the academics. Piano lessons, dance lessons (Cotillion), community theater, Taekwondo and other sports can all find a place on a transcript.

In addition to your formal academic transcript, it is helpful (and often required) to have a separate resume.  In this you can include a small photograph, a short, general description of the student (basic personality, educational goals, etc.), and include awards and activities not necessarily suited for an academic transcript.

5th College Bound

There are several things worth mentioning as you plan the way to college. When will you take the PSAT, SAT and/or THEA? Having your child study for these tests is worth the time. It is not necessarily a matter of studying content for the tests as learning how to take the test. The PSAT can be taken in 9th & 10th grade, but MUST be taken in fall of 11th grade to be officially counted.  It is not mandatory, but high scores on the PSAT can generate a "free ride" to college, so it is worth the effort and also works as practice for other standardized tests.  The SAT or ACT are the main tests used for submission to colleges and may be taken multiple times.  Many scholarships are based on these scores, so many feel it highly important to prepare for these tests.  (For detailed information and helpful study tips on the SAT, click HERE)  The study guide "Cracking the SAT" by Princeton Review is highly recommended.  Some home school students prefer the ACT test over the SAT. (Click HERE)  THEA is an exam used by your local college for admission, if a student's previous SAT/ACT scores are not available or high enough to exclude taking the THEA. 

Scholarships need to be checked into before the 12th grade. The junior year is a great fact-finding year. Make a list of scholarships you plan to apply for and their due dates. What will each scholarship look at: grades, community service, a writing sample. Some scholarships will want an essay and some will want a resume. Make your plan during your junior year so you are ready as that 12th grade year rolls around.

If your student does not have a particular college selected, it is extremely helpful to make college visits.  Colleges have designated high school visit days, but most will gladly accommodate you anytime.  Doing this before your senior year will make life incredibly simpler!

To Sum It All Up

I know, that seems like an overwhelming amount of information. But don’t panic. You CAN home school high school! Remember, planning is important. Remember, others have gone before you. Use them to talk you through it. Ask for advice!

So lets begin with a prayer, a plan and the right attitude:

I CAN, with God’s help, home school high school!


Lovingly written & contributed by Karen Leach & Claudia Fink

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Rattlers Basketball 2010-2011 Schedule

It's finally here...the Official Rattlers Basketball Schedule! We hope you will
join us this year and CHEER for the RATTLER team.


Tuesday, 2nd Season kick-0ff: Westlake at Westlake JV Boys 5, Varsity
Girls 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Thursday, 4th: Bellevue- Away- Varsity Girls Only 6:30

Monday, 8th: First Home Game, Woodbine Elementary- Denton Home School Varsity
Girls 7, Varsity Boys 8:15

Saturday, 13th: Poetry-Away- JV Boys 2, Varsity Girls 3:30, Varsity Boys 5:00

Tuesday, 16th: Junior Varsity Girls-Away- Trinity Christian Paris

Tuesday, 16th: Junior Varsity Boys- Away-Texoma Christian, Sherman--- Varsity
Boys 6:00

Friday, 19th: Victory Life, Durant--Away- Varsity Girls 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Tuesday, 23rd: Forestburg-- JV Boys 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Tuesday, 30th: Slidell-- Away-- JV Boys 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Tuesday, 30th: HOME--JV/Varsity Girls 6:30


Saturday, 4th: HOME--Denton Calvary- JV Girls 1, JV Boys 2, Varsity Girls 3,
Varsity Boys 4:30

Tuesday, 7th: Collinsville at Collinsville VG 6, VB 7:30

Saturday, 11th: Weatherford--Away-- 3:00 JV Boys, Varsity Girls 4, Varsity
Boys 5:30

Tuesday, 14th: Harvest Christian, Watauga--Varsity Girls 6

Tuesday, 14th: Praire Valley-Away- Varsity Boys 7

Friday, 17th: American Airlines Center! Tenative Play for the girls begins at
1 Boys to follow

Thursday, 30th: All Boys Wise County TBA


Monday, 3rd: TTI, Dallas Boys Away 7:30

Thursday, 6th: HOME-- North Cities Varsity Boys 7, Denton Home School
Varsity Girls 8:30

Saturday, 8th: Paris Home School at Paris JV Boys 1, JV Girls 2, Varsity Girls
3, Varsity Boys 4:30

Monday, 10th: HOME Dallas Thunder JV Girls 6, Varsity Girls 7

Friday, 14th: Heritage Christian, Away JV Boys 4:30, Varsity Girls and
Varsity Boys

Thursday, 20th: Wise County, Boys Only TBA

Friday, 21st: Grayson at Grayson Varsity Girls 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Monday, 24th: HOME Victory Life Varsity Girls 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Tuesday, 25th: Greenville Christian, Greenville Varsity Girls 6, Varsity Boys


Tuesday, 1st: Nazarene Christian, Crowley Varsity Girls 6, Varsity Boys 7:30

Saturday, 5th HOME Weatherford Express JV Boys 1, Varsity Girls, Varsity

Tuesday, 8th Grayson at HOME Girls 7, Boys 8:15

Thursday, 10th TTI, Dallas Boys Only TBA

Friday, 11th Phoenix Charter, Greenville Girls Only 6

17th-19th REGIONAL Play-offs at Grayson Christian in Sherman

24th-26th STATE Play-offs in Waxahacie at SAGU

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Support a Soldier!

Joshua Zimmerer, a 2007 RRCH graduate AND a proud member of the United States Marines, is currently serving his 4th deployment overseas. He is serving on a ship in Pakistan, and is not scheduled to come home until May. He is married to Hilary Land Zimmerer, another 2007 RRCH graduate. They have one cute little boy, named after his daddy.

The Good Citizenship class at EC is collecting items for a Christmas box to send to Josh. We would love to send Christmas cards or goodies from as many members of RRCH as possible. Hilary gave us a few specific ideas for Josh:

Beef jerky
tootsie rolls
hunting magazines
western paperbacks
baby wipes
any hygiene products
canned ready-to-eat foods (like Ravioli) with pull-tab lids
other non-perishable foods and snacks

Items will be collected until Friday, November 5. Please drop your donations off at Temple Baptist Church on Fridays during Enrichment Classes or contact Nicki Truesdell for other times at

Fire Station Field Trip

We have the opportunity to tour the Main Fire Station in Gainesville for a field trip on Wednesday, November 3 at 9:30 a.m. This is open to all ages. The entire field trip should last an hour or less.

If you are interested, please RSVP to Nicki Truesdell ( the following information:

Family name
# of children under 9
# of children 10 and over

If we have a large group, they may split us into and older and younger group for more personalized experiences. However, splitting up is not mandatory.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Laura Ayers's biology classes is going to the Dallas Arboretum on Wednesday, October 20th.

The cost will not be over $5 per person.  They have 66 acres on White Rock Lake to explore.

The Great Pumpkin Festival and the Oktoberfest Garden is set up and on display for fall.
**Laura will collect money the for the admission tickets on October 15th.

Aviation Field Trip

This program was set up for school students, but they are scheduling a special time for Red River Christian Homeschoolers on Friday the 8th at 3:00 p.m. You MUST R.S.V.P. if you wish to attend!
**It states that it is for ages 8 and up. No younger children will be allowed to participate.
You do not want to miss this great opportunity to learn about aviation first hand and see some really cool airplanes. There will also be an opportunity to actually participate in an actual flight. The Texas Chapter Antique Airplane Association will be holding their 48th annual “Fly-In” at the Gainesville Municipal Airport again this year on October 8-9, 2010 and YOU ARE INVITED to attend.

Field trips for Gainesville Students to attend the "Aviation Education 101" forums.

- The forums will be conducted after 2:00 PM and 3:15 PM on Friday the 8th at the airport.

- There will be space and pilot instructors for several groups of 6-8 student each.

- The forums will be limited to the first 50 students total.

Airplane rides, under the auspices of the EAA "Young Eagles" program and will be conducted from the Gainesville airport terminal building. The FLIGHTS will begin around 3:00 PM on Saturday afternoon the 9th (weather permitting). Students desiring to participate in this program must arrive in time to sign-up and attend a PRE-FLIGHT briefing (suggest by 2:30 pm). There is no charge for these flights. HOWEVER, there are a limited number of flights, so it's a first come - first serve scenario. Middle school age & older.

To R.S.V.P. call Stan Price 817-488-8623 or

*When you RSVP, please tell him if you would like the 2:00 or 3:15 session, as well as how many children will be attending and their ages. They have room for 50 kids per session.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

What to do if EC is cancelled

Missing EC due to bad weather is such a disappointment to so many. Here are some things you can do to turn those frowns upside down!

1. Have everyone in your house wear a nametag.

2. Have school, but move to a different room of the house every 50 minutes.

3. Ring a bell when it's time to change classes.

4. Eat lunch on the floor with a blanket. Make sure at least one child cries and another spills their drink so you'll get the full effect.

5. Play "I lost my backpack."

6. At the end of the school day, stack the chairs on top of the kitchen table.

7. Mill around in the driveway talking about what you want to do "after school."

8. If the weather permits, go to Braum's or Taco Casa for a treat!

How to Get Ready for EC

This is a tongue-in-cheek look at how Enrichment Class preparation can look in some households.

For homeschooling families, a day away from home at classes can be exhausting. Here are some nuggets of wisdom from a 10 year veteran of EC.

1. Wait until Monday of the first week of EC to prepare your class supplies. It's even better if you wait until the night before. This ensures that you will go to sleep seeing visions of your lesson plan and you'll be well-versed in your subject for class the next day.

2. Stay up as late as possible on Thursday night. Midnight or later is preferable. This shows true dedication.

3. Assemble various junk foods around you as you cut, glue, type, copy, stack, and pack your supplies. This will give you a quick rush of energy, and then you'll have that crash you need to fall into bed later.

4. Get up 4 hours before you're supposed to be at EC. This will come in handy when you remember a few last-minute preparations, like typing supply lists, stuffing sacks, etc., while dressing and feeding your children.

5. Don't make your bed before you leave. You'll want it nap-ready this afternoon!

6. Save make-up application for the drive to EC. You want your look to be as fresh as possible when you get there, while giving the other moms the impression that you've got it all under control.

7. Stuff various snack foods in your purse to inhale as you run down the hall to your first class.

8. Give thanks to God that you had the good sense to at least put some food in the crock pot for dinner, because, MAN you're gonna need it!

9. Make mental notes during the day of all the contacts you need to make, stuff you should've packed, and lessons to plan for next week. Promptly forget them.

10. Do it all again next week!

10 Ways to Come Up with an Class Idea for EC

If you want to teach a class at EC next semester (and you've attended at least one semester) it's almost time to turn in your class descriptions. Some of you may have LOTS of ideas, and some of you may be drawing a blank. So here are some suggestions to get you started:

1. Pray! God may be wanting to use you in a special way through EC.

2. Ask your kids! Teaching on one of their favorite topics can be very easy; you probably have lots of resources already. (This is how I came up with my Dinosaurs class.)

2. Use a unit study. These can range anywhere from dogs to space travel to the Constitution to India. You can use a made-to-order study or design your own.

3. Ask a board member what's been popular before. Usually fun science classes, physical activities (dance, sports, etc.) and arts and crafts are popular, but there are so many options that kids have absolutely loved.

4. Teach Preschool. If you want to teach, but you don't want to do a lot of extra study, teach preschoolers. They are happy with just about ANYTHING, and their studies are so basic. Science can be about pets or trees, and math can be counting and number games.

5. Use YOUR gifts. Do you love to crochet? Teach it! Do you love poetry? Teach it! Are you knowledgeable about nutrition? Share it!

6. Expand your homeschool. If you're doing something interesting at home, turn it into an EC class. This cuts down on the extra preparation time, because you're already teaching it.

7. Pick one of your favorite books and go with it! (I love Lord of the Rings, so I taught it. It turned out to be a huge hit!)

8. Use the season, nearest holidays, or an election to work with. Christmas crafts, Pilgrims, or the political process work great in the Fall. Gardenting, or the Life of Jesus in the Spring.

9. Think of what you wish you could teach your kid at home, but honestly know it will not happen... like "kids in the kitchen" (if you are the type who cook solo) or math facts- like i really care about those??? But i know I have to teach them to my offspring, so might as well make it a party with snacks so they can count and all!

10. Think back to some of your kids' favorite classes in the past. Could YOU teach it? Probably!

Think of what you love- what are your passions. What are your gifts. Each one of us is really built/ programmed for something. Are you a server, a prayer warrior, a worker, a teacher? Of course we are all teachers, but some really have the gift - others operate in a grace gift and it is not really their love. Work to your own skills. Don't work against yourself putting yourself in a bind each and every Friday.

Never assume a class idea is not going to be popular. Throw it out there & let the board hash out the details. Show yourself ready to teach, willing to change a bit and most importantly honor the LORD!

See a board member for more info, and get the classes turned in EARLY!

Enrichment Class Board:
Kari Davidson 903-429-6215
Nicki Truesdell 940-612-1300
Karen Leach 940-612-3206
Claudia Fink 940-612-1220

Monday, August 9, 2010

Photos from Enrichment Classes

Pep Rally for the Rattlers!

Music Fun

Build it Big!

Little House Sewing

Little House Sewing

Just a bunch of girls in a tree!



Sewing with boys

A visit from reptiles

RRCH Teen is featured writer in Gainesville Daily Register

Liberty Davidson, age 17, has received the honor of being a featured writer in the Gainesville Daily Register. So far, she's been featured every other Friday! You can read a sample of her writing on the Register's website, and get a full dose on her blog, Freedom to Speak.

Congratulations to Liberty for this great position!

If you like Liberty's writing, please drop a note to the Register and tell them so!

RRCH Member receives honors in Denton County 4H

"After achieving top honors at the state Wildlife Habitat Evaluation Program Invitational, members of the Denton County 4-H WHEP team can now call themselves national champions.

At a contest in New Mexico in late July, the team matched wits, knowledge and wildlife skills with 16 other teams from around the country in individual and team tasks, and came out on top."

Sam Hatch is a member of this team, and also a member of the Red River Enrichment Classes. Congratulations to Sam and his whole team!

Read the rest of the article here.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Rattlers win the State Championship!

In February 2010 our Rattlers Boys and Girls basketball teams traveled to the T-CAL state tournament to compete. We are so excited to announce that the

Lady Rattlers won the State Championship

in the Class A division. Congratulations, ladies, for all your hard work!

And congratulations to Tess Hough for winning MVP of the championship game!
We are also pleased to announce that our Rattlers Boy's team, in their first year at the T-CAL tournament, made it to the last round of championship games! What a feat, considering the team is so new. Congratulations, guys! We're looking forward to a State Championship in your near future!

For more information about Rattlers basketball, click here, and for info about Lady Rattlers, click here.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Red River Rattlers' Sponsors


Medifast Weight Control Centers

Golf Cars for Fun

Dry Clean Super Center

Nascoga Federal Credit Union

Prosperity Bank

Axtell Rite-Value Pharmacy

Computers Plus Unlimited

Monday, July 19, 2010

Calgon, Take Me Away . . .

Almost coming in first under Top Homeschool Products were: Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. Dr. Pepper
Personally, when the kids are on my LAST nerve or the phone keeps ringing when I am TRYING to read a book aloud, or I just need a little pick me up, my fav is SWEET TEA. If only there was a Taco Casa in Forestburg!!! During the winter it's Starbucks apple cider. It is always a race on Friday mornings to see if I can make it to town early enough to swing through the drive thru before our enrichment classes. Sweet Tea or Apple Cider just seem to make the day better.
How 'bout you? Are you a morning coffee drinker? I know I have seen many of you in the same Starbucks line I sit in! What get's your day off to a good start? OR what helps you make it through the afternoon?
Come on . . . Spill it!! (No, pun intended!)

“Yes, sweet tea for me, too. I having with breakfast (or before) every morning. Don't like coffee, and gave up DP.”

“I am so blessed to be able to read the bible and drink a few cups of hot tea every morning. I couldn't manage to find the time when the kids were younger, but now, I think I can't function without that quiet time! My current tea favorites are Wisdom of the Ancients Yerba Mate Royale and Yogi Muscle Recovery Green Tea. I buy both of those from Michelle's United coop.
I also enjoy Uncle Lee's Jasmine Green Tea and Uncle Lee's White Tea (tastes just like black tea) that I purchase from Alison's Frontier coop. “

“Venti Starbucks Iced Double Shot with White Mocha gets me through the rough days. Two of our homeschool graduates introduced me to this drink, last year when I was getting ready for Cotillion and my energy level was at zero.”
- Pennye

“Starbucks is my pick up.I drink cheap, instant decaf diluted by half with a generic brand of vanilla soy pre-warmed in a microwave.  What do I know about taste?  Know what I like about
Starbucks?  My personal unwritten rule:  No Kids Alowed.  For years, I never took a day off unless it was sanctioned by their father.  This was my choice, not his demand. He worked so many long, hard hours, I figured he needed his
rest.  Then one day while feeling particularly murderous I realized I hadn't had a day off in 2 YEARS.  Now, I strike out whenever the humor is on me.”

“Everyone should get a break.  Sometime during my 30's, while being either pregnant or lactating or both for 10 (yes, that's ten) sleep-deprived, contiguous years, I decided everybody needs some down time. That may mean going to my room for a "Mommy time-out" or talking on the phone or, rarely, it means a night out with my dh or friends. Having a break keeps me out of survival mode, that robotic, pragmatic state in which all creativity and humor is lost.
Coffee, chocolate, and tea can help. But when I have 5 minutes and am inspired to do something really invigorating for myself and my kids, I turn on the music and we all dance.”

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Homeschool Planners, Calendars, & To Do Lists . . .

According to several of the responses from last weeks "Homeschool Products You CanNOT Live Without"  the number one favorite was: 

A Plan.  A Planner.  Lesson Plans.  A Schedule.  A "To Do List".  A Calendar.

So, what planner do you use?  How or where do you keep up with your "To Do List?"  What is your favorite calendar? 

Tiffany says,

“I love my Well Planned Day Planner (  )   I use it daily.  It has both a monthly section, & a weekly/daily sections as well. It also has great homeschooling articles/inspiration each month.  I use this for lesson plans, field trips, weekly priorities, & dinner menus.  It also includes tear outs for shopping lists, an attendance & grades section & so much more.  It is kind of pricey, but it has been well worth it for me. 

I use my planner for a weekly "To Do List", sheet of paper for daily household "To Do's" & my cell phone for my errands list. 

I have 3 working calendars :)  I use the calendars in my planner for mostly school/kid related planning, I use Google Calendar for a core calendar & photoshoot bookings (because I can pull it up on my phone when I'm away from the house).  I also use a dry-erase monthly calendar in my office for a quick reference for the entire family (so no one is hounding me about when this is or what we are doing today, tomorrow, next week, etc.  & they aren't diggin' through my stuff).  *I color code this calendar to make it easier.”

Allison says,

I used to have a daytimer in my purse and it just wasn't useful to me, so now I have a slimline credit card holder as my wallet and a small diary type book in my purse. I have a page tabbed for monthly appts and then anything else, whether shopping list or notes to do for the current are on the next available page. I use a calender on my computer for all appts, meetings, etc. with
reminders. (yahoo or outlook work great) So things will be listed on both, but I am on the computer daily so it works. (For those of you who access more than one computer, use yahoo. There are many options for reminders and printing calendars and viewing on the screen that can be selected......) The older two have their school schedule on a small whiteboard on the wall and they have the order they like and check off when they do it. This is not the whiteboard we use for school. It is a schedule only beside the magnet calendar we have had up for years. The little ones still like that one. I keep a small one page year at a glance in the kitchen cupboard.  I have found this to work for me. When I tried to use the daytimer, I either missed putting everything down and it didn't have the automatic reminder that the computer does for me. And I need that.  But then again, life is always changing and I am always changing, sorting, assessing or reassessing or RE-organizing something. aren't you? :-)”

Linda says,

“I use a monthly calendar that I carry with my grocery list, etc. in a medium sized zippered portfolio book. That way I have it to reference when I'm out and about. Invariably that is when Albert calls and tells me of something I need to put on the calendar! Also, it is a good quick reference for doctor's appointments and the orthodontist (a series of never ending appointments that make your child's smile perfect and your bank account empty - but it is worth it). However, my BRAIN is a dry board calendar on the front of the fridge. Next to it is a smaller blank dry board that is for family members to write me notes and reminders - or what we need from Wal-Mart. The fridge is Mommy Central. If it doesn't make the fridge – you are taking your chances! I sync the two calendars (purse & fridge) religiously: that would be those spiritual moments in the morning when I stand there clutching my coffee mug hoping the caffeine and the information with magically merge and spring to life in my sleepy brain. If that doesn't work, I take two steps to my right - add more coffee - place it in the turbo machine (microwave) and repeat the process. I also keep a small note pad and pen in the car and the bathroom. You know...those places where you have flashes of brilliance at inopportune moments.
As you can tell, I'm over 50 and the techy stuff doesn't really get it done for me. It was a huge mistake for them to make electronics small enough to be pitched from the window of a moving vehicle...I'm just sayin'...”

Nicki says,

“Calendar, schmalendar. I keep it all in my head. I had a nifty planner from Wal Mart that I used to carry in my purse, until I changed purses. Then the calendar was too big, so I left it at home. It hasn't been filled in for months. I also used to have a big dry-erase calendar hung up in the kitchen. But when I was sick in bed for several weeks, it mysteriously came down from the wall, and it hasn't been hung back up.
So now I just use my brainpower (and during pregnancy, that's running at about 50%). So my solution is to quit doing stuff. Then I don't have anything that needs to be remembered! We go to church on Sundays, and since that's my husband's only day off, I know that if he's at home, it  must be Sunday. (Postal holidays do cause some confusion.)
The only thing coming up is the Skillet/Hawk Nelson concert at Six Flags and my teenager has made sure that NONE of us forget that, with notes on the white board, post-it notes stuck to the computer screen, and verbal reminders every half hour.
Oh, there is one calendar in my house. It's a free one from Oriental Trading Company that someone hung up in an out-of-the-way place in the kitchen. And since Oriental Trading wants us to buy craft and party supplies, they've listed every holiday one could imagine on their calendar. For instance today is Cow Appreciation Day. Next Tuesday is National Lollipop Day. July 3 was Stay Out of the Sun Day (seriously? the day before July 4th???). My 9 year old keeps me apprised of these holidays.
What will I do when EC starts back, and piano lessons, and cotillion, and the baby comes, and blah, blah, blah??? Ask me later.”

Jen says,

“I am a meandering trail of sticky notes tied to calendar blips from my cell phone backed up by yahoo calendar reminders on the computer.  I too have several computers but only one of them works.  I have given them a home in a corner of my living room where they can watch TV in the evening with the rest of us.  They're part of the family, after all.  I think they are the ones responsible for the messes no one else under my roof will 'fess' up to.  I have note pads in my purse, by both phones and on my desk but I think maybe I aught to put one in the bathroom.  It might help me remember why I went in there.

Sara says,

“Daytimer from Walmart because it's cheap.  Sometimes I get the daytimer from the NCTC Bookstore.  It has the quickie math and language basics in the back of it.  I use it for Craig's daily work, but also put the extracurricular on days, too. Calendar with pretty pictures of historical places on the top is placed on the wall in the kitchen.  All parties, appointments, b-days, etc. go on there.  If I run out of room on any particular day, I know that I wouldn't be able to do all those things anyway and either don't do that thing at all or plan it on another day.  Dry erase pad on the refrigerator for grocery list and anything I'm afraid I'll forget to do written REALLY large with a circle around it.  Each day of the week is written at the top with things that are pretty much consistent (i.e. AWANAS, Scouts, EC) under the right day with time next to it.
Almost any coffee in the coffee pot will work just fine because I have a microwave.  There is one kind of coffee that will not work, though.  When the packages at Starbucks say "mulch/garden use" on their coffee grounds
that they put in the bucket by the door, they mean it.”

Linda’s response,

“Starbucks mulch / garden use? I am fascinated and horrified all at the same time. My garden screams "coffee" but the Know Thyself Angel on my right shoulder is shaking her precious head and begging me to consider the
ramifications of getting them confused in my morning stupor. The Evil Twin Fallen Angel on my left shoulder is rolling around laughing at the thought of Albert making the same mistake.
I must get out more.”

Friday, July 9, 2010

Must Have Homeschool Products

The verdict is in. Here are the RRCH Top Must Have Homeschool Products:

1. A Plan. A Planner. Lesson Plans. A Schedule. A "To Do List". A Calendar.
2. Caffeine: Coffee. Coffee. Coffee. Dr. Pepper
3. Paper/Pencils/Pens/Crayons/Markers/Erasers
4. Computer/Internet/Printer
5. Dry Erase/Chalkboard
6. Favorite Curriculum
7. Timer
8. Leftovers
9. Patience
10. Sleep
11. Good Attitudes

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Curriculum Show & Tell Schedule & Speakers

Here is a tentative schedule for our Curriculum Show & Tell.  This is a list of people that have committed to showing us some of their favorite curriculum & telling us all about it.   If you are not on the list & would like to share please keep in mind you will have an opportunity to do so between the people speaking below & offer any input for a further discussion after they have offered their opinion on a particular curriculum. 

We are hoping for this to be an opportunity for moms (& dads) to get together & just talk curriculum in a relaxed friendly environment.  Please do not feel intimidated in offering your opinion - we'd love to hear what is working for you or hasn't worked for that matter. 

For those listed below - THANK YOU!


10:00 - Welcome by Nicki & Tiffany

10:15 - Devotional by Liberty Davidson, (Homeschool High School, Junior)

10:30 – Gary & Kari Davidson:  Seasons of Homeschooling

11:00 – Becky Turner:  Wordly Wise & Apologia Science

11:10 – Beth Fox:  Sonlight, Horizons Math, Saxon Math, Mother Goose Preschool, Story of the World, Shurley English

11:45 – Classical Conversations

12:00 – Nichole Hackney:  Bob Jones, Sonlight, & Teaching Textbooks

12:15 – Nicki Truesdel:  Five In A Row, Math-U-See

12:35 – Michelle Yosten:  K-12

12:40 – Corrine French: Organizing your homeschool & making it work for you

12:50 – Misty Pearson: Write Shop & Apologia Science

1:00 – Alison Lewis:  Abeka, Shurley Grammar, Veritas Press, & Story of the World

1:20 – Christy Lewis:  Total Language Plus

1:30 – Tiffany Scott:  Winter Promise, Tapestry of Grace, Sue Patrick’s Workbox System, Preschool

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Curriculum Show & Tell Q & A

When is the Curriculum Show & Tell?

Saturday, April 24 from 10am-2pm

Do you have to attend the entire time?

No, it is an open door policy.  Come & go as you please.  *Tentative schedule coming soon!

Where is it at?

Cross Timbers Church in Valley View

6134 E. FM 922

Is child care provided?

Yes, for ages 4 years old & under.  A snack will be provided, but we ask that you please bring a lunch for your child.

Are children welcome?

Yes, but we ask that they stay with you at all times & are respectful of the speaker & displays.

What should I bring?

Bring any curriculum you use (even if you don’t plan on speaking on it – others may just want to look at it or ask you about it privately – you can show instead of tell).

A pen & paper/notepad for taking notes.

Any used curriculum you have for sale (marked clearly with prices) & a container to collect money.

Own a home business?  Feel free to bring samples or advertise at a table.

Cash &/or check for purchasing any used curriculum or books.

A lunch if you plan on staying the entire time.  *We will have snacks & little mini-sandwiches for sale.

Do I have to speak on curriculum if I come?

No.  You are welcome to come & listen, browse used curriculum, & look at what everyone else is sharing.

What do I talk about if I am sharing my curriculum?

We are allotting 5-10 minutes per curriculum for speaking time.  We suggest you introduce yourself & share the ages of your children, how long you have homeschooled, & how long you have used the curriculum you are sharing.  You may want to give a personal testimony on the success or failure of using it or discuss the pro’s & con’s.  Information on pricing & where to find it would also be helpful.   Just give your opinion - what you liked, disliked, any suggestions, or ways that you tweaked.

If you have any other questions regarding the Curriculum Show & Tell please leave a comment & we will be happy to address them.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Child Care At the Curriculum S & T

Child care will be provided at our Curriculum Show & Tell (on April 24 from 10-2pm) for children 4 & under ONLY.  We did not require any pre-registration & are not sure how many of our guests will take advantage of this offer so we are adamant about the age range.  We also ask that only parents check on children in the child care area not older siblings. 

If you choose to bring older children with you we ask that you keep them with you at all times.  Please do not allow them to play outside unattended either. 

The cost of child care is free however, donations would be greatly appreciated.  We have several homeschool girls that are donating their time & earning money for special upcoming activities – ask them about it – they’d love to share with you other fundraisers they are doing as well.

Can’t wait to see you there!

Monday, April 12, 2010

A Little Inspiration

As our 1st Annual Curriculum Show & Tell quickly approaches we are coming up with all sorts of ideas to inspire you to attend.


Homeschooling is work!  Hard WORK!

Often as we draw close to the end of another school year & begin to think about the next, we can quickly become overwhelmed.  Sometimes we just get a little burned out & need a little “pick me up.”  Or maybe you are just beginning this journey & are eager to soak up all the information you possibly can . . .

Are you tired?  Plum worn out?  Does your homeschool need a little pick me up?  Are you eager to learn more about homeschooling?

I have just thing for you . . .

There is just one condition:  You must come to our Curriculum Show & Tell

On April 24 from 10-2pm we will be giving away 6 inspiring CD’s from prior convention speakers at our Curriculum Show & Tell:

  • The Power of a Focused Mother by Renee Ellison, Homeschool How-To’s
  • How To Avoid the Two Most Common Pitfalls in Home Education by Renee Ellison
  • Keepers of the Home High Call for Daughters of Destiny by Richard “Little Bear” Wheeler, Mantle Ministries
  • Four Faces of Mount Rushmore – Landmark Lessons for All Times by Richard “Little Bear” Wheeler
  • Help!  What Do I Do With My Pre-Schoolers? by Lyndsay Lambert, Texas Home School Coalition
  • Building Character and Strong Work Ethics in Your Children by Shirley Solis, Lifetime Books & Gifts


Now hopefully this has inspired you to get a little inspiration at our 1st Annual Curriculum Show & Tell !

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Great Door Prizes at the Curriculum Show and Tell!

The RRCH Curriculum Show and Tell will be a great way to meet people, buy and sell used books, learn about other curriculum choices and ask questions of Moms who actually use the products.

But did you know it's also going to be a great day for door prizes?

Everyone attending will get their name put in a drawing for the following:
  • $25 Gift Card to Home Educator's Resource in Lewisville
  • Free Admission to the Home School Book Fair in May
  • RRCH Lanyards
  • Great Books

So come on out on Saturday, April 24 and join the fun!

See the full details here, and follow us on Facebook, too!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Friday, February 12, 2010

How to Create a Photo Album in our Yahoo! Group

Our Yahoo! Group currently has 154 members & 8 photo albums.  Were you even aware our group had “photo albums”?  Either you didn’t, you don’t know how to add one, or you aren’t utilizing this great tool.  Well, now you know.  And I am going to share with you how to create an album for you family:
Go to Yahoo! Groups & sign in.
On the left hand side of your Yahoo! Groups homepage you will see a list of your groups.  Click on CCTXHomeEd.
On the top left hand side you will see a blue box.  Click on Photos.
You will be directed to the Photos section of our Yahoo! Group.  You will see Photo Albums by some of our members.  To view theirs simply click on the album you wish to view.
To create your own album look at the top right corner of the screen & you will see Add Photo / Create Album.  Click on Create Album.
Give your album a name & description & click Continue.
To upload your pictures click on the blue Select Files button.
Select your photos from the files on your computer.  Once you have selected all the photos you wish to add click Upload.
Wait for your photos to upload.  Once the uploading is complete you will see a check mark at the bottom that reads Upload Complete. 
Click View Your PhotosThe following screen will provide the options to edit, move, copy, and/or delete your photos. 
Edit:  This allows you to rename & add descriptions/captions to your photos.  Check the photo(s) you wish to edit & click Edit.  When you are done making any changes click Continue.
Move: This allows you to move a photo(s) to an existing album or create a new album.   Check the photo(s) you wish to move & click Move.  When you are done making any changes click Continue.
Copy:  This allows you to copy a picture to an existing album or a new album.  Check the photo(s) you wish to copy & click Copy.  When you are done click Continue.
To cancel any of these actions & return to your photos main screen click Cancel.
You may also add or rearrange photos by clicking these options found in the lower right hand corner of your screen.
I really hope more of us utilize this tool more often.  This is a great way for us to introduce ourselves to new & existing members & share a glimpse of our homeschools with each other.  What a fantastic way for us to share our enrichment group activities with each other as well!  So what are you waiting for?  Go dig through your digital photos, find a few favorites & begin your own album.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Quilt Raffle Winner!

The Red River Rattlers are proud to announce the winner of the quilt raffle . . .

Don Fox of Valley View!

Don is the father-in-law of Beth Fox, and attends Cross Timbers Church with several RRCH families. He was very excited! He informed Nicki that he makes handmade quilt racks! How great is that?!

Thank you to everyone who purchased tickets in the raffle. The Rattlers raised $489.60!

Thank you to Tiffany Palmer (sister of Rattler Katy) for making this beautiful quilt, as well!