9 Tips for Teaching Archaeology in Your Homeschool

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9 Tips for Teaching Archaeology in Your Homeschool

Archaeology {or archeology, if you prefer; they’re both acceptable} isn’t a common profession.  As such, it can be difficult to run into materials you can use to help you with teaching archaeology in your homeschool.

Babydoll wants to be an archaeologist {and has for as long as I can remember}, so it’s important to me to somehow foster that desire in her schoolwork somehow.

Here is a compilation of ways you can include this in your homeschool, whether you have a child working toward the profession or one that just thinks it’s cool!

  1. Books and magazines:  This is probably the most obvious choice.  On the surface it might seem difficult to find age-appropriate materials, but you might be surprised by what’s out there.  Babydoll is a fan of dig™, an archaeology magazine for kids.  And just take a look at all the results on Amazon when you search for archaeology books for kids.
  2. Put together your own archaeologist kit:  I’m not talking about cheap plastic junk you can buy as a kit.  I’m talking a what-the-pros-use kit.  All you really need is a trowel and you’re good to go, but you’d be surprised at how inexpensively you can put together a base kit.  We got Babydoll started with a couple of different types of trowels {Marshalltown are the best, supposedly}, measuring tape, a folding ruler, a pencil, and a blue glittery notepad, just for some color.  Store it all in a tackle box or those stacking organization bins they sell at Walmart.
  3. Games:  Babydoll loved Roman Town!  It’s a computer game that takes the user through an interactive dig.  She finished it that day, I believe, but continues to play it.  It looks like they have a new game coming out next month.
  4. Join archaeology organizations:  There are international, national, and regional archaeology societies.  You can find a great listing of them on this site.  Many offer low rates for students and send newsletters, invitations to special events, and even information about participating in local digs.
  5. Visit archaeology museums:  Many colleges and universities that have an archaeology program also have museums that the public can visit.  It might even be possible to contact the museum before a visit and arrange for a professor to give your family a tour.  Many also have special events happening throughout the year.
  6. Look for camps:  Several states have resident camps designed to allow older kids the opportunity to help out with a dig, but these are pricey and not located conveniently for many of us.  Search for camps in your area, or in neighboring states.  At one time there was an archaeology camp offered for younger kids here in AL.  I know GA and FL have also offered family-oriented camps.
  7. Find archaeology celebrations:  Believe it or not, there are special days and months set aside for archaeology.  National Archaeology Day is October 20th this year, and the National Park Service offers National Archaeology Month.  Many states also have statewide celebrations, complete with festive events and many learning opportunities.  Having trouble finding them? Start with your local college or university.
  8. Volunteer at field schools:  If you have an older student, they can always ask to volunteer at a local field school.  They just might get the chance to haul dirt all summer while observing the workings of a real dig.  ShovelBums always maintains a great list of worldwide field schools.
  9. Create a full-year curriculum:  This can be downright terrifying, especially if you’re not a history or science buff, but it’s one of the most amazing things you can ever do for your child.  This is what we’re embarking on this year:  an entire year devoted to a real archaeological dig.  I highly recommend picking up Hands-On Archaeology: Real-Life Activities for Kids by John White {affiliate link}.  Professor White was a big proponent of teaching proper archaeology to young children.  His guide is hands-down the best I have seen for teaching real archaeology.  I didn’t want a kit that we just hacked away at, finding the stuff hidden inside.  This book has actual forms, terminology, everything you need to really teach your child about actual archaeology.

Even if your child isn’t a die-hard archaeology fan, these activities can definitely liven up a history curriculum or many other aspects of school.

Have you found any great archaeology resources you use in your homeschool?

Photo credit: gordontour via photo pin cc

 

Sweet Critique: A Time Dog Review

Time Dog

I’d like you to bear with me.  Even if you think this post won’t be relevant to you, please, bear with me.

I have wanted to share this with you guys for a while; it’s something I think each and every one of you can use.

Have you ever had a moment {or five} where you think to yourself:

I need an assistant somethin’ fierce.

I bet you have. I have. Lots of us have.

Doesn’t matter if you’re a busy single lady, a mom with one or twelve kids, a stay-at-home dad, we’re all busy.

Many of us manage to get just about everything done, but there’s always that nagging feeling of the “more” that needs to be done.

What if I told you I knew of a service that could take a ton of that “more” off your shoulders, and do it in the most amazing awesomesauce manner man ever dreamed of?

You’d think I was crazy, yes?

I’m not.

Time Dog has created something truly amazing in a world filled with sub-par junk.

And their amazing is a double-whammy of stupendousness:  not only do they offer you a tremendously valuable service, but they give you unheard of customer service.

The Innovative Service

This was the part that drew me in:  “on-the-go service for personal daily tasks.”

None of us want to pawn off the fun stuff like eating ice cream or playing in the sprinklers.  Time Dog can’t have that.

What they can have, though, is the task of finding the best airfare for a trip you’ve got coming up.  Or the task of getting driving directions.  Or ordering dinner.  Or rescheduling an appointment.

The list goes on and on.

All of us have to-do lists.  Time Dog takes that to-do list and does it for you.

I’ve actually used the service, while I was writing my eBook {points to the right, where you can click and buy it…}.

I thought I was going to loose my mind, I had so much to do.  I didn’t have time to make phone calls or search for things on the internet.  I didn’t want to.

Enter Time Dog.

I bothered them so very much, I felt bad.  They never made me feel bad though.  What they did do was deliver better-than-expected results.

Instance #1:  If you’re a regular here, you know how much I love my dog, Winston.  Well Winston is terrified of the dark, and the car, and the thunder, and everything else.  I bought a Thunder Shirt for him, but it was the wrong size.  I needed to get it exchanged quickly, but didn’t have time to call our supplier.  Time Dog called and arranged the drop off.  All I had to do was show up.

Instance #2:  I needed a haircut.  Bad.  I didn’t have time to call and make the appointment.  Time Dog to the rescue.  Oh, but they didn’t just make the appointment.  No, no, no.  My lady was no longer at the salon I asked them to call {that’s how long it had been since I had my hair did}.

Did they give up? No.  They got the information for where my stylist was now, called the salon up {a couple of times might I add}, and scheduled my appointment for me.

They could have given up when she was no longer where I asked them to call.  They could have given up when my stylist didn’t return the call.  But they didn’t, and I got my haircut.

Instance #3:  Babydoll, like many girls her age, is in love with fashion.  She gets an {age-appropriate} fashion magazine and found a bathing suit in an issue that she just had to have.

It wasn’t on the designer’s website, and there were no stores near us.  Me, the person who can find anything online couldn’t find this suit.

I called Time Dog in to rescue me.  I had to launch my book and get to Reviewer’s Retreat.

I asked them to find the bathing suit for me in the Charlotte area.  They called the stores, there were no suits there.  They then called the designer to find out about getting the suit.

Time Dog found the one place online that sold the bathing suit, and also let me know that the only other way to get the suit was to order from the designer.

This all brings me to my next point…

Awesome Freaking Service

Lots of people could find stuff for you and shoot you an email to answer a question.  But that’s simply not good enough for them.

Their FAST {Family Service Team} members go above and beyond.  Every. Single. Time.

Sometimes you don’t have a special bathing suit or haircut need, you just have a normal everyday need.  They’ll still give something extra, whether that’s a nifty little fact you never knew {related to your request}, extra directions, extra choices, something.

Dude, I could literally go on and on about the times they exceeded my expectations.  This post is already pretty long though…

There are just no words to describe what an amazing thing they’ve got going.  Look at their first core value:

Give them a try, you can do so for free for 15 days, so what do you have to lose?  Nothing, that’s what.  Let them wow your socks off.

Just not sure if you could make use of it, but know someone who needs a break?  You can give them a gift, too.

Is your mind blown? Is your head spinning with the knowledge of this amazingness you never knew you could have?

Check out their FAQ section for even more information!

Oh, and you just HAVE to check this out too

What would you ask Time Dog to do for you?

True Confessions:  I learned about Time Dog at Blissdom this year.  I felt like I was going to tear my hair out when writing the eBook.  I decided to give Time Dog a try.  Then I was talking with the Time Dog guys and was asked if I’d like to mention their service.  I had planned on it anyway, so I said yes.  I feel that everyone needs know about this awesomeness.  So, I’m not being paid off to tell you guys this stuff, I *heart* the service!

 

It’s an Omnibus, Y’all!

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Preparing for Talks with Your Daughter #KotexMom

Mom and daughter

If you’re a parent, especially a mother of a girl, I don’t have to tell you how important it is to keep the lines of communication open.

The process doesn’t start when they become a teenager.  It doesn’t start once they’ve had a bad experience or gotten into trouble.

It starts at birth.  Some would even argue before then.

Know why?

It takes time to foster a relationship with your daughter.  It takes time to make her feel that she can come to you with anything.

You, as a parent, must take time to prepare for talks with your daughter.  If you don’t, she’ll go to someone else; someone who is in all likelihood not prepared.

Preparing for Those Moments

The great thing about preparing for these moments is that you don’t have to do anything extravagant.  Just be there for your daughter.

Listen to her.  Don’t judge, just listen.  Create special Mommy/Daughter moments and traditions.

To me, this is the first step.  Just learn how to enjoy your daughter.  Learn more about her so you can better read her cues.

The BIG Conversations

Most of the time you and your daughter are together, conversations will revolve around normal, everyday things.

It’s been my experience that the whoppers don’t have much lead-in.  They just kind of smack you over the head with them.

I’m going to be quite honest:  I’m probably still very bad about hiding my emotions when I’m told something I wasn’t prepared to hear.

Know what makes it easier?  The fact that my daughter and I have a great relationship and she comes to me with what’s on her mind.

We’ve already laid that foundation, so everything else is much easier to build.

All this touchy-feely stuff is great, but when it comes to something like discussing your daughter’s first period, you need some nuts and bolts type stuff.

That’s where Kotex comes in.  They’ve taken a conversation that’s been happening for generations, one that’s uncomfortable for just about everyone, and given  you the tools you need to prepare specifically for that talk.

Last month I shared the calendar resource with you, but I wanted to underscore it’s importance again.

If you take nothing else away from this post, remember the calendar.  If you’re having trouble figuring out exactly how to handle the period talk, this thing will get you through it.

I firmly believe you need to be prepared for everything, but especially for something so extensive as this talk.  You need to know the facts.  You need to know what she might ask.  You need to know how to handle it.

Oh, and remember:  it’s OK if you don’t know the answer to a question.  Just tell your daughter, research it, and come back to it.

Still need some help and want to point your daughter in the direction of some good information?

Be sure to check out the Hello Period site, put together by U by Kotex Tween.  It’s a great resource for daughters.

I’d like to say one final thing about preparing for these talks:  think of it in terms of how your daughter views it.  She’s going through changes that are quite possibly scary to her.

She’s looking to you, her hero, for information and assistance.  You’ve been there.  You can help her.

Remember the awkward talks you had with your mother.  Or the ones she had with her mother.  Break the cycle.  Make use of the technology and the resources U by Kotex Tween has put together and provide her with the best possible start into this new phase in her life.

What about you; how do you prepare for talks like this with your daughter?

photo credit: Julien Lagarde via photo pin cc

True Confessions:  I  wrote this review while participating in a Brand Ambassador Campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of U by Kotex Tween and received products to facilitate my post and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.

 

Here We Go Again – Week 1

Writing

In my life this week…

I had a lot to think about.  Work.  Homeschooling.  A family visit.  HOA troubles.

Plus, I was PMSing.  That always makes things loads more fun.

It wasn’t that it was a bad week {we had a phenomenal homeschool week}, but it was long, and I’m glad it’s time to just relax with family.

In our homeschool this week…

It was our first week back to school, and let me tell you:  I think the fourth time’s a charm.

This year already feels different than any other; I finally feel like I really have a handle on things.

I feel more comfortable.  I feel happier.  I am excited.  We got our work done, and we had fun.

Here’s a little summary of most of what we did:

Places we’re going and people we’re seeing…

We had family come visit us this week.  It was a busy, yet fun, visit.  We also took a trip to the farmers’ market; always a good time!

My favorite thing this week was…

I’d have to say my favorite thing was starting school again.  It always feels so “right” when we start again, like everything’s back to normal.

I’m cooking…

lots of stuff!  This Sears food photography course has had us grilling a ton.  It’s been fun, and I even managed to get a great shot of our cucumber salad from this weekend.

Be sure to check out what others did this week too!