For 29 Years The Teaching Home Has Been Providing Home-School Families
Information, Inspiration, and Encouragement from a Distinctively Christian Perspective.
Co-Editors: Veteran Home-School Sisters, Sue Welch and Cindy Short
As you set up various work areas in your
home, make sure they fit the needs of your
family members, or can be adjusted for each
This will help your children learn healthy
computer habits and develop good posture,
while preventing pain, strain, or future
Use a desk or table of the correct height to
allow for work in the neutral position,
forearms parallel to the floor with elbows
bent at a 90-110 angle.
Avoid rounded or curved seats that encourage
If necessary, adjust the chair height with a
cushion or pad on the seat to raise the
height of the child in relation to the work
surface or keyboard. Use a back
cushion, pillow or rolled-up towel for back
The child's knees should be positioned at an
approximate 90- to 120- degree angle.
If feet do not reach the floor with heels on
the floor, place a box or footstool under
The monitor should be directly in front of
the child, 18-28 inches from the eyes, at or
below the child's eye level.
The wrists should be straight when keying or
using the mouse, not angled up or down.
Purchase a clip
copy holder that mounts on the side of
your monitor, a small document
holder, or a copy
board for the computer which will allow
the child to look up at the work being typed
instead of down at the table.
Consider a small
sized keyboard for younger children.
Reduce eyestrain with adequate lighting, no
glare on the monitor screen, and frequent
breaks to look at a more distant
object. Blinking helps keep the eyes
Because your child's muscles need adequate
hydration to avoid injury, encourage him to
drink four 8-ounce glasses of water a day.
Set a timer by the computer and have your
children take a stretch break every 15-20
International Children's Ergonomics
Foundation offers a free downloadable stretch
break for kids software at their website.
For More Information
for Computer Workstations with stretches
and eye exercises.
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Less Is More
For our kindergarten studies I was
emphasizing both character building and
Little did I realize how well the
character lessons were sinking in until one
day when I was reviewing number line concepts
with our 5-year-old.
I asked, "If you had a choice of 7 or 17
doll dresses for your birthday, which would
"Seven, she said confidently. (Oh, no, I
thought. She hasn't grasped number value at
"Why would you choose 7?" I probed.
"Well, Mom," she replied, "17 new dresses
at a time just wouldn't be good stewardship!"
Submitted by Linda R., Washington.
Send your humorous anecdote to email@example.com.
Immerse your family in God's truth through
systematic reading and study of God's Word.
See The Teaching Home's Bible reading
schedule online at TeachingHome.com.
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Abiding Radio at www.AbidingRadio.com.
Because we have been separated from God by
sin, Jesus Christ died in our place, then
rose to life again. If we trust Him as
our Savior and Lord, He will forgive our sin
and give us eternal life.
"For God so loved the world, that
He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever
believes in Him shall not perish, but have
eternal life." (John 3:16)
"The Lord ... is patient toward you, not
wishing for any to perish but for all to come
to repentance." (II Peter 3:9)
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Back-to-Home-School, Part 2 of 5-Part
Ready Your Home for School
1. Clear Out and Clean
2. Establish Daily Chores
3. Set Up Your School
Sidebar: Ergonomic Considerations
4. Organize Your Home Library
• Oxford Tutorial Service:
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As you prepare to go back to home school,
we hope that you will look forward to this
opportunity of teaching and training your
children with anticipation!
If you missed our last issue, you can view
it in our online
archives. Newsletter #248 covered
reaffirming your decision to home school,
setting goals, arranging classes for highest
efficiency, and selecting your curriculum.
Topics in our Back-to-Home-School
5-part series are taken from our Checklist
for Starting a School Year. We
hope that these suggestions and reminders
will help and encourage you!
The Pat Welch Family, Publishers
Pat, Sue, Heather, Holly, and Brian
Home is a home-school, family-run
business operated in our home since 1980.
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• Weekly Tutorials with Norman J. Lund,
1. Clear Out and Clean Your Home
Unclutter Your Home with the Four Box
If you haven't done so already, get rid of
unused items in your home and store
little-used ones out of the way. This
will make things a whole lot easier for you
all year long!
The “Four-Box Dejunking
Method” below is recommended by many
experts to help you identify and dispose of
four boxes and label them:
1) Throw Away
2) Give Away or Sell
4) Put Away
your home, room by room, and item by item.
a decision about each item you pick up and
place it in the correct box.
• Schedule time
before you stop working each day to
appropriately dispose of box contents.
#246, read tips about how to become motivated
to get your house in order, plan your
decluttering strategies, find a place for
everything, and keep clutter
out of your home.
Do a Thorough Cleaning
A thorough house cleaning from attic to
basement may be easier to do during summer
might want to set aside a week, or a full or
partial day each week, for cleaning until it
you clean, continue using the 4-box method of
getting rid of clutter.
professional cleaning products and notes on
how to use them at Don Aslett’s Cleanreport.com.
each room and and deal with each and every
item, nook, and cranny. See a
week-by-week, room-by-room cleaning
as a team. Assign each member of your
family a chore (some may want to specialize)
and see how much more you can do by working
Ideal for Christian Home Schoolers
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2. Establish Daily Chores
This is another foundational
back-to-home-school preparation that will pay
dividends by making your home run smoothly
during school months.
Each member of the family can and should
have responsibilities that make a
contribution to the success of the whole
When you can, schedule chores so that the
whole family is actually working together at
the same time. This is not only
extremely encouraging to each one, but it
also provides a good example of your attitude
towards work and your diligence in doing a
Teaching Life Skills
We can use chores as double duty –
to keep our homes running efficiently and to
teach our children responsibility and life
Your children's training and practice in
various life skills will grow as they work
with you. When able, children may take
responsibility for entire areas, thus
rehearsing for adult life.
Assign chores. A chore chart on the
refrigerator makes sure everyone knows what
their duties are, and checking off the jobs
that are done provides motivation.
For a simple list
of chores, read "Magic Minimum: Cleaning
Secret of Organized Families."
Opportunities Chart" from Doorposts will
help you simplify chore assignments and teach
your children biblical principles of
Describe chores. Write out a 3x5
the name of the chore, what it entails, check
points to tell if the job is completed, the
estimated time the job should take, and what
supplies to use.
Consider homemade, nontoxic, and low-cost
cleaning products. See recipes at www.OrganizedHome.com.
Also keep supplies close to the job, even
if that means two sets of supplies (e.g., for
the upstairs and downstairs bathrooms).
Take time to train your children how to do
each job to your standards and on time.
your child watch you do the job as you
explain it, then have him do the job while
you watch and offer confirmation or
Cleaning Tips from Cleaning Pros."
"7 Ways To Teach Responsibility through
Chores" in Newsletter
#45, "The Advantages of Habits" in Newsletter
#89, and "17 Ways To Form Good Habits" in
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3. Set Up Your School Space
For Study and School Work
Determine what space you will use for
school. This may vary from subject to
subject or from child to child, but might
table for math and writing.
in living room for multi-age classes or
for older child's independent study.
• Computer stations.
The safest option is to keep Internet use in
an open area, often frequented by family
members, or be with your child when he is on
See "Ergonomic Considerations" in the
sidebar at left.
For Others in the Home
Also establish space where those not in
school (preschoolers, husbands with a day
off, etc.) can be free to enjoy themselves
without disturbing students.
For Storage of School Supplies
Set aside space for school books,
reference books, supplies, and records:
shelves, drawers, or sturdy plastic crates or
clearly (with a child's name, subject, or
item) so everyone knows where to return
spaces are easily accessible and ample enough
to add more items without crowding.
Find many innovative and practical ideas
Strategies for Homeschool Families."
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4. Organize Your Home Library
Homeschoolers never have too many books;
they just don't have enough bookshelves!
To organize your library, first go through
all the books in your home and sort them:
away any books that are not worth saving.
of keeping boxes of old workbooks that your
children have done, consider removing the
cover and a few sample pages from each one,
then staple them together and file them.
away or sell duplicate books unless they are
really great, hard-to-get books that you want
to keep to loan out or save for your
children’s future libraries.
with friends who might want to trade
books in a yardsale or on the Internet on ABE
Books or Amazon.com.
books as you go with safe
methods that will help preserve them.
like books together in different places in
your home. Examples:
- Children’s personal reading books in
- Reference books in your library or family
- Current school books together by each
- Bibles and Bible study books
- Other like categories together
might want to safely
store books that your children want to
take with them when they start their own
When you have completed work on your
library you should be able to find and use
your books better!
We need your help!
Please help us make this newsletter better
by letting us know what we are doing
correctly, where we need to improve, and
topics you would like addressed.
E-mail us today!