Tag Archives: Homeschooling

YEMsimplenatureactivity

Simple Nature Activity for Kids

We loved doing this simple nature activity for kids.

Simple Nature Activity for Kids

Learning is so much fun when it doesn’t feel like learning, isn’t it? The other day, we took a walk around the neighborhood looking for interesting pieces of nature. Everything our children discovered we observed; What does it look like? What does it do? Color? Texture? We talked about how important that small seed is, etc.

After finishing our walk, our children dumped their bags of nature goodies on their outdoor table, and we grabbed some paper and glue. We put together an impromptu activity that kept them interested the entire morning! Our son created an entire story on his paper out of bark and seeds about taking a bike ride with his daddy through a forrest.

Simple Nature Activity for Kids

Something as simple as leaves, seeds, some glue and paper can be a wonderful learning experience for your child. Just remember to talk about things like texture, color, purpose, patterns, and size. And of course, listen to the stories and explanations that they have to tell! There is nothing better than to see their little minds turning with thought.

This nature activity seems so simple, and it really is. It’s the things you talk about as they hold each piece of nature that is important, along with giving them a chance to be creative with something that they can piece together and hold in their hands.

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I Was Homeschooled, and I wasn’t Normal…

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Since openly discussing our decision to homeschool our children, I have come to realize that people may not always be accepting of our choice. I have also discovered that I have a smidge of insecurity to what people’s reactions are going to be when we tell them. Sometimes we get a look of judgement or concern, and people have even said things like, “Don’t you want them to be NORMAL kids?” Or “The homeschooling families I’ve meant are just WEIRD….”

What many people do not know, is that I was homeschooled for eight years a child, and while sometimes it hurts when people make negative comments about the way I was raised, and now about the decision we have made for our children, I just have to remind myself that they may not understand, but that’s okay. I have to remind myself that I wasn’t “normal,” but it wasn’t a bad thing…

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That’s right, I wasn’t a normal kid.

I didn’t spend five days a week at a desk with other kids around me. I didn’t go to recess every day, or spend an extra hour or two riding the bus, and I definitely didn’t have to worry about test scores. Basically, I didn’t have what in my opinion was equivalent to a full time job at the age of six. To some, I may have “missed out.”

Today, as a College-educated adult with children of my own, in my opinion, I was given the chance to learn at my own pace. I was taught to love learning. I was given the freedom to explore my interests as far as I could ever imagine. I was given the chance to form my own opinions about life, among other things, without the influence of my peers and others on my thoughts and decisions. In regards to the quality of my education, or whether I was “equal” to my peers, I would definitely say that I was. In subjects that I really enjoyed, I was grade levels ahead. I was given plenty of one-on-one attention, curriculum that catered to my specific styles of learning, and I also learned to love self-guided learning. If I had a question, I would find the answer. I was taught that learning is a continuing part of every day life, and something to be enjoyed.


I remember getting a microscope for Christmas as a child, and thinking that it was the most wonderful thing I could have ever asked for (My son uses that same microscope today to explore his most current interest, nature). Of course, some may think that’s a little unusual. So yeah, I’m not “normal,” and maybe I was a little “weird,” but that’s because as a child I didn’t care if my jeans were in style, and I couldn’t tell you the difference between The BackStreet Boys and NSYNC (clearly I was born in the 90’s). Those things weren’t important to me.

All I had to worry about was being a child, and that’s all a child should have to do.

So please, don’t judge a homeschooling family because their lifestyle is different from your own. I am not saying there is anything wrong with public education, or private school at all. What is good for one family may not be good for another. Homeschooling can be hard sometimes, and after making the decision to homeschool our son for his first year of kindergarten, I have seen quite a lot of judgement and concerned expressions aimed in the direction of our family. So yes, our children may end up a little “weird,” but that’s because they are being raised differently than what a typical child would be. That does not mean that it is a bad thing, and it certainly does not mean our children are missing out.

Young Earthy Mama’s List of Top Blogs Worth Reading

Hey guys! I’m still here! Sorry I’ve been absent for a while. Mom life got ahold of me through the Holidays with special dinners, the usual winter illnesses, and we also decided to get an ornery little puppy that has been consuming any spare time I have (I’ve seriously had to give her 3 baths in the last 2 days!)

Although I’ve been MIA for a bit, I’ve still been able to read occasional posts from other great bloggers when I have a moment to myself, and I have decided to start a post dedicated to my all-time favorite blogs. These blogs are without doubt worth reading, I promise!

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1. My absolute number one favorite blog to read is Happiness Is Here.

The Mama of 3 (soon to be 4) children documents their lives as an Unschooling family living in Australia. Her passion about the way that her and her husband have chosen to educate their children   is absolutely amazing, and although she has chosen not to show the faces of her girls, her photography skills are unbelievable. The way she is able to capture her children without showing their faces is something I hope to achieve someday. Check her out, I promise you won’t be disappointed.

2. Yogaberry is a blog about an awesome Mama dedicated to becoming a yoga instructor. Not only does she have great posts about yoga and healthy lifestyle, she keeps it real with posts that include her adorable babies. Her Instagram account is full of snaps of her and her toddlers doing yoga poses together, and it reminds us that she is a Mama first, and yoga instructor second.

3. Red And Honey is the blog that inspired me to start blogging about my own natural living and homeschooling adventures. I have always felt that her posts are so honest and genuine, and it seems like she includes so many aspects of her life in her blog. She always adds a little humor into her posts, which I love. If you want to read about natural living, frugality, homeschooling with the Charlotte Mason method, or gentle parenting, stop by and check her out!

4. I always go to Wellness Mama when I am in a DIY mood! I have tried so many of her natural cosmetics recipes with great success. It is extremely clear that she works very hard to provide her readers with well-researched posts. She makes sure that all of the ingredients in her recipes are safe and healthy. Feel like making your own natural cleaners, deodorant, lotions, makeup, or just about anything else? Then her blog is the place to look.

5. Mariet at Practicing Normal always makes me laugh! She is a Mom in a blended family, and she is downright honest about everything. I always find myself chuckling after stumbling upon conversations she has with her children on her Facebook Page. She is still very new to blogging and Practicing Normal‘s popularity is growing fast!

I’m sure this list will continue to get longer as I discover more of the awesome blogs out there, so stay tuned and keep checking back! You can also like the Young Earthy Mama Facebook Page for updates and shared posts from these awesome blogs.

Why Our Family Has A Garden In Town

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I have wanted to write this post for quite some time, and I am finally getting around to it. I feel so strongly about this, that it’s almost hard to put into words. Having a garden has brought our tiny family so much closer. Not just to each other, but to the Earth as well. There is no doubt in my mind, that having a garden has been the most beneficial, and educational decision we could have made, and for that reason we continue to do it every year.

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Gardening is something that takes a lot of hard work, determination, and sometimes research, but believe me it is worth it. Whether the only outdoor space you have is a city balcony, or you live on 50 acres, you can do it. Whether your children are babies or almost grown, just a small garden will fill them with unbelievable curiosity.

We live on a little lot in a small town, and in previous years we used cement block raised beds for our garden. Last summer, some of the kindest individuals we have ever met allowed us to plant a huge garden on their empty lot across the street from our home. Because of that, last summer was the most amazing experience we have had as a family. We worked so hard on that garden, and our family is so much closer because of it. Our children were able to plant the tiny seeds, and learn how they grow. They learned about eco-systems, the water cycle, patience, hard work, and so much more. The list is honestly never ending, and every year as they become older, there will be new lessons to be learned, and more knowledge to be gained.

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Our four-year-old always insists on planting our seeds, and kisses every one to give it love and help it grow. Our two-year-old fills her belly with onions, pulled right from the earth. We didn’t have many this fall because most of them made it to her mouth before the basket!

Every morning we would walk across the street to check on the garden. Our children would check on the baby melons, squealing with excitement if they grew a large amount from the previous days’ rain. Their shoes would get torn off immediately so that they could squish their little toes in the mud as they walked up and down the rows of corn, measuring how much taller it was than them that week. Our two-year-old always plopped down in her sun dress and snacked on kale and onions as the tall corn shaded her, while our four-year-old investigated what kind of creatures were eating the tomatoes at night. We had old spoons we left there for play, and both of our children would dig for things. Our four-year-old would always comment that he was being and Archaeologist, with Miss 2 following, “Me too! Me too!” We could stay at that garden for hours every day, and the family time we spent there was incredible.

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Not only were we able to watch our children play and learn, we all worked together towards a common goal- to help our plants grow. Even our 2-year-old helped pull weeds, water plants, and gather our harvest with her own special little bucket in hand. With their Daddy working during the day, it was so nice for all of us to have something to look forward to in the afternoons when he would arrive home. We would gather the supplies we needed, and hold hands as we crossed the street to that special place, and work until it was time for dinner on some nights. If we went on a weekend trip, it seemed like the first thing we all wanted to do (even before unloading the car), was check on the garden- to see what surprises it had for us.

Tuned In Parents - Young Earthy Mama Garden Loving Kids

The pride we all feel that we are able to grow that nutritious food on our own, and put it on the table for our children is an indescribable feeling, especially living in town without much land. We were able to can over forty quarts of green beans this summer, more zucchini bread than we knew what to do with, a freezer full of tomato sauce, plus fresh veggies most of spring, summer, and fall.

You wonder what the cost must have been to do this? I believe we calculated it to cost 56 dollars. That is including the cost of seeds, starter plants, and the cumulative water bills.

We do not spend money on herbicides. We plant extra, so if anything happens, we still end up with plenty. It just takes time, and I promise no matter how busy you are, you can always find a little time to work in the garden. It definitely has a therapeutic quality.

Our yearly garden has taught our small children so many lessons, but the one I feel is most valuble, is this: The Earth can provide for us the things we need. That is a lesson many people do not seem to remember anymore.

People feel as though they need to rely on big businesses, grocery stores, and so many other man-made things that they forget the Earth is capable of giving us what we need. We just need to show it a little love. People think dirt on their food is discusting… well, I’m fairly certain the chemical ingredients in the french fries they are munching on are much worse.

If you still need more convincing….

An Urban Garden is:

  • Organic
  • Inexpensive/nearly free
  • You know where your food is coming from
  • No need to make extra store trips- just walk out and grab a tomato from the garden!
  • A garden provides you with the opportunity to educate your children about various different topics
  • Much more fresh than much of the produce you purchase from the store
  • Give it a try! Learn something new!
  • And just remember….

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