Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Homeschool Art Ideas: How To Set Up Art Sessions In Your Homeschool

The very mention of "Art" can send a lot of parents into a tizzy. "I'm not an artist!!!" they exclaim. "I can't even draw a straight line, so what can I teach my kids?" ponder others. Art, whether as an after-school activity or a homeschooling activity, seems to be best left to arty Youtubers and drawing & painting classes. 

I'm here to tell you that whether you're an artist or NOT, you can still initiate happy, arty sessions with your kids, right inside your homes. 

Homeschool Art Projects

Yes, you may say that I'm a self-taught artist and enjoy art, and so like doing these arty activities with my son. But really, with the beautiful resources (tutorials and books) available these days, most of the time, what we need is some energy and enthusiasm to 'facilitate' these sessions. 

When your children sit down with your to draw, paint and create, often they are not looking for Pinterest-perfect creations from you; but the attention and bonding that comes with making things together. 

Homeschool Art Activities - working together


So, if you would like to Do Art At Home, here are some simple ways to begin.

You can see some of the art projects we do at home on Instagram at chandanamilspo or on Facebook at Chandana Banerjee Writer.

1. Put together a basket of basic art materials to work with. Over the years, doing art with my little boy at home, I've noticed that not having art and craft materials in one place can actually take the fun out it because you end up spending the better part of your day hunting down crayons, paper, paints and glue.

Some of the things you will need to begin are a watercolour set, marker pens, poster paints, a small set of acrylic paints, crayons or oil pastels, cellotape, washi tape, glue, a few paint brushes, a container for water and child-friendly scissors.  Also, slip in a packet of watercolour paper, a drawing book with normal paper and printout sheets with one side plain. I also like to collect cardboard packaging and discarded bubblewrap for recycled-reused projects. Tuck these in a place where you can easily access the material. Either in a basket or tote bag is good. 

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

A Book On Simple Living: Destination Simple by Brooke McAlary

Simple living isn't simple any more. Even for someone like me, who doesn't follow the standard pace (read: alway on the buzz) and trends of the world, simplifying takes some amount of thought and practice. 

Like a lot of you, I enjoy packing my to-do list with multiple tasks, can't help myself multi-tasking and feel a little lost when I have a spare moment to sit down and stare into space. As it turns out, living a slow simple life, does take some practice. Like meditation.

Destination Simple: Simple living ideas


Brooke McAlary's second book "Destination Simple" is just the book to curl up with for those of us, who are craving a measure of slow and a cuppa of simple living tips. Many of us intuitively know what it is we need to do to simplify but still need a guide to hold our hands and lead us into a simple way of living. 

McAlary of Slow Your Home, who champions the slow lifestyle, packs quire a punch in this little book of simple living tips. She lays out the basics to creating morning and evening rituals, unplugging from screens, initiating a gratitude practice and looking at our priorities and lifestyles from a perspective of "tilting" rather than complete balance. 

There are a few more rituals and ideas on simplifying, and I found each one of these relevant and necessary.

Slow down your life

As you read this short book, you realise that you probably know about many of the ideas, but even though these seem very basic, the art is in implementing them into your daily lives and creating a habit. 

Destination simple is a book that you may want to read once but revisit several times as you take baby steps towards creating simple and satisfying days.

When I was reading the book, I realised that even though I had dabbled in some of the ideas (like morning and evening routine, gratitude, tilting, brain dump), I had not been doing them consistently, which is why probably, I wasn't able to enjoy the measure of calm that I have been hoping to create. This book is a gentle reminder of all those little things that can enrich our lives considerably.

Get ready to wrap yourself in a blanket of peace and calm as you read Destination Simple by Brooke McAlary.

Call To Action: For more ways to create a joyful stay-at-home life, check out my new book "Queen Of The At-Home Lifestyle". You can download it here.

For more ideas on creating a simple and joyful stay-at-home life, which includes homeschooling and working-from-home as your own boss, check out my Youtube Channel.

Friday, July 24, 2020

Book Review: Slow Homeschooling by Milva McDonald

'Cinnamon Reads - warm books to curl up with': Slow Homeschooling: Short Essays About Mindful Homeschooling by Milva McDonald

Sometimes, you’re craving a good book and it pops out of the blue, just when you are totally ready for it. “Slow Homeschooling” is that book for me. While scouring the net, looking through slow living blogs and joyful homeschooling posts, I stumbled across Milva Mcdonald’s blog A Potluck Life, where she writes about her take on homeschooling and homeschooling 4 kids, the slow, relaxed way. It was after reading a handful of her posts that I spotted her book and downloaded it immediately.

Slow Homeschooling for new homeschooling parents
Slow Homeschooling book cover

As a homeschooling parent and an author, who writes about homeschooling, working-from-home and homemaking, the whole discussion on slow homeschooling really appeals to me. Since we are transitioning into an eclectic and more relaxed form of homeschooling ourselves, this book is just what I wanted to sink into, with a cup of rich coffee to enjoy it with.

Each of the 23 chapters in the book is a short essay on the various facets of creating a homeschooling lifestyle focussed on joy, your children’s interests and a learning-rich home environment. Since Macdonald’s four adult children have created interesting and successful careers and lifestyles for themselves, you know that the concept of slow homeschooling does not just sound good, but works in the real world too.

Tuesday, July 21, 2020

6 Homeschooling Blog Posts That Newbie Homeschooling Parents Should Not Miss

Hey friends! Summer holidays are over and school sessions are back with a bang.
Are your kids enrolled in a school and doing classes online, or you are homeschooling in India for this whole school year? Maybe you are contemplating homeschooling in the long run and looking for homeschooling facts to begin with? Wherever you find yourself on the homeschooling smorgasbord, here is some homeschooling help for parents to start with. 


Make science fun with experiments - homeschool science project
N with a DIY Homeschool Science project: A solar-operated cardboard plane
Many of you - my dear readers, have been sending me your questions about the why's, what's and how's of homeschooling. As much as I'd love to, I do not have the bandwidth currently to get on a call with each parent to explain the vast landscape of homeschooling facts. So, I've decided to consolidate all the homeschooling resources that I have created and make some more, to help you transition to this eclectic homeschool lifestyle.

Note: Scroll below to find out how you can be the first readers to read a part of my upcoming, still-in-progress book about creating a relaxed homeschooling experience.

So, here are the first few questions you may have about homeschooling and my answers to that:

6 questions you need to ask yourself if you are considering homeschooling your child/children. Go over each of these questions in the post and jot down your answer. When you mull over your answers honestly, they will help you make the decision and then ease into a homeschooling life.

Simple things you can do to transition into a homeschooling life with your Kindergartener. Often, we tie ourselves up in knots, wondering how we can create a rich and stimulating educational environment for our little one. We want Pinterest-worthy teaching tools and state-of-the-art kiddie furniture to make our homeschool days shine. But honestly, all your need are a few things and plenty of enthusiasm to begin.

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