I’d like to share this video message with you. If you’d rather read about it, see below.

 

At the beginning of 2019, NCHE took a bold step of faith when the board hired me (Matthew McDill) to be our full-time executive director. I was a part of that decision making process because I had been serving on the board as a volunteer for five years and over a year as president. We recognized that if we were going to fulfill our mission to help the over 90,000 families in NC homeschool with confidence and joy we were going to need additional full-time staff and leadership that could take us to the next level of effective service. In response to the pandemic this year, even more parents are choosing to homeschool. What an opportunity we have to equip parents for this critical calling!

NCHE has had enough money in savings to make this transition, but our annual income does not meet the additional expense of a new full-time employee. We are working to increase our budget to meet this expense as soon as possible. Like so many others, NCHE ran into a major speed bump this year when we had to cancel our 2020 Thrive! Conference. This was a significant loss of income, and so we are working even harder now to meet this new demanding budget.

We believe that we are pursuing God’s mission for us to help parents homeschool with confidence and joy. We do this by protecting your right to homeschool in NC, equipping you with information and encouragement, and connecting you with other families and groups across the state. We believe that your effort to homeschool is vital to the health of your kids, your family, and our nation. We have expanded our ministry to parents this year in exciting ways and have even bigger plans for 2021.

In this year’s December giving campaign, our goal is to raise $37,157. This amount is 25% of our annual staff budget that we are investing in growing the impact of NCHE. Will you please help us meet this new aggressive budget so that we can keep the homeschool movement strong by empowering and protecting even more homeschool families in NC?

by Guest Contributor Valerie Cox

Whether your children realize it or not, science is everywhere in the world around us. From the
sunlight waking us up in the morning to how our bodies digest the food we eat, science is a
major part of our daily lives. As their educator, it’s important to engage your children with
science so they have a better understanding and deeper appreciation of our environment.

1. Question Walks
One way to engage your children with science is to take a “question walk” where they can ask
questions about what they see. As your children’s educator, you can take time to explain why the
sky is blue or point out different plants and trees along your walk. You could try allowing the
children to guide the question walk as much as possible so you can discover any new interests or
curiosities they have, and if you don’t know an answer to their question, you can have your
children help you research the answer. It’s important for children to know that science is about
continuing to learn even after you graduate from school.

2. Trip to the Zoo
If you are studying animals in your school unit, a trip to the zoo will be a wonderful way for your
children to engage with science. You can have your children take journals and write down facts
they learn or draw pictures of the animals they see throughout the day. You could also check
with your zoo to see if they offer any educational opportunities specifically for homeschool
students as this would be another resourceful way for your children to learn more about science
and the animal kingdom.

3. Hands-On Experiments
If your children learn better with hands-on learning, performing science experiments would be a
smart way to engage your children with science. Many simple science experiments can easily be
done at home, and all you need to do is spend a few minutes online researching your different
options to find one that is tailored to your children’s ages and scientific interests. If you are
studying a specific scientific unit, you can find a coordinating experiment so your children will
continue their science learning and have their curiosities piqued. From classic experiments like
making a volcano to more in-depth experiments like ones involving dry ice, there is certainly a
hands-on science experiment perfect for your children.

4. Build Structures
If your children enjoy playing with building blocks, you can engage your children with science
by learning more about architecture and engineering. As you study the building process, you can
talk about the different elements (stone, metal, wood, etc.) that most buildings are built with and
have it serve as a math integration as well since your children will be calculating building height
and other key measurements. You can have your children engineer their own structure or create a
replica of a local landmark. If your children aren’t interested in building blocks, you can have
them engineer a structure out of items they find around the house like plastic bottles, cardboard
boxes, or egg cartons. For a hands-on experiment using engineering skills, you could have your
children create race cars or containers to cushion an egg during an egg drop.

5. Schedule Field Trips
Visiting a museum is a great way to engage your children with science. You can research
different museums in your area and look for ones that would appeal to your children. From
children’s museums to space museums to museums on specific scientific leaders, you can easily
find a museum with a science element within driving distance from your house, and you can
easily use this as a field trip opportunity for your children. As your children’s educator, you
should think outside of the box! When looking for field trip opportunities, remember that your
children can learn a great deal about science by visiting a local farm or manufacturing facility as
well as traditional museums. You can sign up to receive communications from area museums so
you can stay up-to-date on new or traveling exhibits and if any museums are offering any
education opportunities for homeschool students.

As both your children’s educator and parent, it can be hard to find new ways to engage them
with science, but it’s important that your children appreciate how many scientific elements are in
the world around them. By taking the time to think outside of the box and look for new
opportunities, you can certainly find plenty of ways to engage your children with their scientific
interests and curiosities.

Valerie Cox is a contributing writer for LOC Scientific.

We are thankful for our members! Are you a new NCHE member or thinking of becoming a member? Start here.

Are you a black homeschool family in North Carolina? We’d love to get connected with you and serve you in any way that we can. You can learn more about North Carolinians for Home Education and how to become a member here. If you have any question, please contact me at matthew.mcdill@nche.com.

National Black Home Educators is a wonderful organization that can also be a support to you on your homeschool journey. This year is their 20th anniversary and they have produced this inspiring video about homeschooling and their organization.

by Matthew McDill

 

“Then He said to His disciples, ‘The harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few.”” Matthew 9:38

This year our family had a small garden. Let me rephrase that: this year our family had a very small garden. We grew tomatoes, peppers, carrots, and spinach. It was fun, but it was far from a plentiful harvest. When Jesus says, “The harvest is plentiful” I don’t picture our tiny family garden. I imagine fields and fields and fields of plants with stalks that are overflowing with delectable, abundant, overripe fruit. I can’t imagine knowing that there are acres of sweet, juicy, low-hanging fruit and no one caring– or even noticing. But that’s the scenario Jesus paints in Matthew 9. It wasn’t that the people were few, it’s that those who were willing to work were few.

Since 1984, NCHE has worked to help families homeschool their children. No one has worked harder than NCHE to protect your right to homeschool, equip you with the resources and encouragement that you need, and connect you with other homeschooling families and opportunities. Our mission is simple, but it isn’t easy. This year’s explosive growth in home education has been thrilling to behold! Today, there is a very real harvest. Have you noticed? If you have noticed, are you doing anything about it?

As the homeschool movement grows, it will take more workers and volunteers than ever to accomplish our mission of helping parents homeschool with confidence and joy. It’s easy to be filled with hope when you see parents leading their children– or children growing in character, courage, and compassion in addition to reading, writing, and arithmetic. Families are being transformed; generations are being transformed! Our mission to equip and encourage families is truly meaningful work.

For 35 years, NCHE has been here for you, and today we invite you to join us– not as a nominal member in name only, but as an active co-laborer in the harvest. Some of you will be able to give financially. For this we are grateful! You can be a part of reaching our giving goals for December 2020. We are trying to raise 25% of our annual staff budget by the end of the year. Some will be able to give through prayer, and we invite you to join us in prayer; we need it. But many of you also have gifts in writing, graphic design, video editing, grant-writing, IT and web development, sales, or marketing. We have real needs in these areas, too. Whether you have a few hours to give regularly or could work on a single, short-term project: we need you. Today, I’m asking you to use your gifts to serve homeschool families by clicking on the VOLUNTEER button below and volunteering with NCHE.

After Jesus said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few,” He said, “Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers into his harvest field.” (Matthew 9:39)

Since August, our board has been asking God to send workers to join us, and I hope that you will!

– Sarah

We are thankful for our members! Are you a new NCHE member or thinking of becoming a member? Start here.