Another Week of Finishing Strong

Finishing Strong ~ Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years #7 Education PossibleWe are excited you are joining us for another link-up, full of posts written specifically to encourage those families homeschooling older students.

Hopefully you’ve been learning as much as we have from the amazing posts being shared!

Here are our favorites from last week:

Heather from Blog She Wrote loved fellow co-host Heidi’s post on Preparing your High School Student for the PSAT.

Finishing Strong ~ Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years #7

She said, “Heidi does a thorough job of preparing parents for the world of college testing. As a homeschooling parent of a 10th grader this year, we’ve already gone through one testing period and we are gearing up for another round. I appreciate the information on the breakdown of the tests as well as the timeline and prep tips.”

Heather also suggests checking with your local school system on the PSAT before getting too far. Her school system does not allow 10th graders to take the exam, so it’s best to make sure in May that a test will be set aside for them in the fall. Many schools order the tests in May.

Also, remember that the PSAT is taken during normal school hours while the SAT and ACT are take on weekends.

She also enjoyed Homeschooling High School – A Plethora of Resources from Sweetness and Light

Finishing Strong ~ Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years #7

Heather loved the way Meredith pulled together many resources for high schooling parents. There are some faith oriented items, along with online partners to help you with high school.

“I enjoy reading about all the ways parents can offer up a unique high school experience for their teens. Thanks for the list!” says Heather.

Do you want to connect with other parents homeschooling older kids? Join our Finishing Strong Community on Google+!

Tina from Tina’s Dynamic Homeschool Plus loved To Sow A Seed from Roots and Wings.

Finishing Strong ~ Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years #7 Education Possible

Tina said, “As I reflected on graduating my first son last year, the words written in To Sow a Seed, echoed how true it is that as parents, we face a daunting task in raising our teens.”

“Gaining independence is a gradual process and the time comes soon enough for our teens to take charge of their life. Roots and wings matter.”

She also enjoyed reading Review: The Camp X Series by Eric Walters from Tea Time with Annie Kate.
Finishing Strong ~ Homeschooling the Middle & High School Years #7 Education Possible
As a history loving person, Tina was intrigued by this well-researched World War II series for middleschoolers. “I can’t wait to take a look at them,” she said.

Don’t forget to check out all of the co-hosts – Aspired Living, Blog She Wrote, Education Possible, Eva Varga, Milk and Cookies, Starts at Eight, and Tina’s Dynamic Homeschool Plus.

Bloggers, by linking up, you may be featured on our co-hosts’ social media pages or our Pinterest board. We may even select you to be featured in a future post!

Guidelines for the hop:

  1. Link up to 3 posts from your blog. Make sure you use the exact URL to the post, not to your home page. You can add any post related to homeschooling middle and high school students. Posts unrelated to that will be removed.
  2. Please no advertising, pinterest, facebook, twitter, or other link-up links!
  3. Grab our button to add to your post after you link it up. Each week we will be choosing our favorite posts to highlight on all 7 sites. If you were featured, make sure you add an “I was featured” button.
  4. The linky will go live on each co-host’s blog each Wednesday at 6am EST, and will be live until Tuesday at 11:55 pm.

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Add your amazing posts that focus on homeschooling middle & high school students. Share your ideas, unique learning approaches, and encouragement, and more.

Win a Jane Austen Themed Gift Basket


For Mother’s Day, 13 of my friends and I are giving away gift baskets loaded with a few of our favorite things.  Be sure to scroll all the way down to enter the giveaway and to see the list of other giveaways being offered. Since one of my favorite things happens to be Jane Austen, especially Pride and Prejudice – my husband is my Mr. Darcy, my gift basket is stuffed with themed goodies. So stuffed in fact, that trying to put them into an actual basket was a disaster, so there is no basket picture.

Included in your winning prize will be:


A Mr. and Mrs. Darcy hand towel with the quote “How ardently I admire and love you.”


A glass tea cup etched with silhouettes of Mr. and Mrs. Darcy gazing loving at each other.


A stamped sterling silver necklace with the words happiness and home, inspired by Jane Austen’s quote “There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort.”


Jane Austen magnets

A collection of 10 glass magnets with images from Charles E. Brock’s illustrated version of Pride and Prejudice.

*note: the winner will receive the DVDs directly from Amazon and everything else will arrive directly from me. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway


In honor of mothers everywhere, 13 iHomeschool Network bloggers have put together gift baskets loaded with a few of their favorite items. Take a peek around these 13 sites and enter to win as many baskets as you like. Each blogger is conducting her own giveaway, so you never know…you may end up winning more than one!

(1) Jane Austen Giveaway from Amy at Milk and Cookies

(2) Moms of Gifted Kids Book Basket from Colleen at Raising Lifelong Learners

(3) Mama’s Tea Time Gift Basket from Jamie at See Jamie Blog

(4) Bible Study Basket Giveaway from Sam at Sam’s Noggin

(5) Mom’s Coffee Break Basket from Heidi at Starts at Eight

(6) Spring Goodie Bag from Megan and Susan at Education Possible

(7) Mom’s Just for Fun Basket from Lara at Lara’s Place and a Cup of Grace

(8) Pampered Pantry Basket from Michele at Preschoolers and Peace

(9) Homeschooling IRL Buzzkill Basket from Kendra at Homeschooling IRL

(10) Mom’s Relaxation Basket from Stephanie at Harrington Harmonies

(11) Healthy & Fit Mama Basket from Alisha at Flourish

(12) Mom’s Memories Basket from Renee at Great Peace Academy

(13) Trim Healthy Mama Basket from Judy at Contented at Home

(14) Treasures for a Catholic Mother from Dianna at The Kennedy Adventures


How to Study the Great Scientists and Inventors


My son wants to work in the science industry when he grows up.  Because of this, we make it a point to do an in-depth study of a scientist or invention every month. Other than giving him inspiration, the most profound effect that I can see is that these men and women teach my son to never give up. One characteristic that can be found in the personality and behavior of almost every successful scientist or inventor is perseverance.

College admission boards are now putting more emphasis on key traits like dedication and commitment, over grades and GPAs. They want more Thomas Edisons and Henry Fords.

Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is to always try just one more time.  -Thomas Edison

My son has always felt a special connection to the brilliant Thomas Edison, as they are actually 6th cousins (a few times removed due to the generation gap.) We often use these Venn Diagrams that I created to compare and contrast two different scientists or even compare a scientist directly to my son. Click on the images to download the files.

Scientist Venn Diagram 2 small Scientist Venn Diagram small

 We also use this scientist notebooking page from Jimmie at

Scientist Biography page

Some of our favorite books are pictured above, but the best one of all is DK’s Great Scientists. I only promote the best and DK Eyewitness books seriously are the best.


A colorful section on Galileo and the history of his telescope.


Oh look, cousin Tom!


Now this is why I say the DK Eyewitness books are the best of the best and everyone should have several of these on their bookshelf.


  1. Look at the selection of titles in the back of this book! Amazing.
  2. You can get them for around $13 each at Amazon.
  3. The recent titles, like this one, come with a clip art CD.
  4. They also include a poster.
  5. They are durable hardback.
  6. They are kid-friendly encyclopedias.
  7. They pack a ton of knowledge inside, but not in a textbook fashion.

Back to the resources in my intro photo above. Also pictured are:


Another great resource are the books in the Getting to Know the World’s Greatest Inventors & Scientists series. My friend Erica from Confessions of a Homeschooler created a lapbook set to go along with these books.

Books not pictured because we either got them from the library or own the ebook versions.