1st Global Homeschool Conference

October 13th marked  the 1st Global Homeschool Conference held at SMX Convention Center at SM Aura in Taguig. I was excited to see how different this conference would be from the previous conferences I’ve been!

The day started early for my daughter and me as we went to the registration area and was welcomed by a long queue of attendees excited to pay or get their kits for the day.

After getting our bracelet and stickers for the workshops, we had few more minutes so we headed to the Homeschool Exchange area.

We looked around some curricula from Learning Plus and my daughter liked IEW’s Poetry Memorization. Since, I want them to be more confident in public speaking and be able to memorize poems and speeches later on, we went ahead to buy it!

We also saw Vanguard Assessment, they give assessments for students to help them know their strengths and also help students with their career assessment through the Curtis Interest Scale. We will definitely contact them next year to help my daughter prepare for her future career choices.


Another interesting booth is Koko & Roko who sells Theme based STEM activity kits. They have Cosmic Adventure for ages 5-7 years old and Jolly Jamboree for ages 3-5 years of age.

A booth by homeschoolers was pretty interesting as well. They have stickers, foldable robots, notebooks and other stuff they created themselves.

True Love Waits have their a booth where they give out tracks about sex and purity and the Good News.

Philippine Homeschoolers Association has their own booth. They are selling iHomeschool book of Ms. Nove Tan.

Pumplepie is there to sell quality books to homeschoolers! It was a delight to see them there.

Science Star Corporation brought several Science manipulatives.


They can measure the temperature and see the results on the app installed on the iPad.


My favorite is the chemistry set. Kyla even guessed the compound they have set up!

Since I am teaching my kids Mandarin right now, I am very keen on buyung this set of Xiao Long Bao Play Kit. A hands-on learning tool I can use to teach not only kids but also others who would like to be taught Mandarin.


The talk began with the hosts and HG President Edric Mendoza warm welcome. It was great to see that there were more than 1000 attendees in the conference hall!

The first plenary talk was by Brad Huddleston on the Impact of the Digital Word on Families and Learning. He shared his findings about dangerous effects that the screen has brought to our lives. He likened it to Digital Cocaine.

He reminded us that our children is NOT the exception, that we need to put intentional limitation. Until the age of 11, the kids shouldn’t be given iPADs as nanny and educational games has the same effects on the child’s brain.

The next session were workshops, I chose to attend How Learners Should Respond to the Digital World by Brad Huddleston. He just continued where he left off from his plenary.

The next workshop I chose was Creative Ideas for Homeschool. It showcased Gina Roldan who shared about Narration, Vicki Dincher on Sceince and Debra Bell on harnessing the gift of curiousity in our kids as best way to learn.

In the afternoon, we had one more workshop and I chose to attend the one with the Homeschool Pioneers as they talked about Parenting and Building Character. It was encouraging to listen to those who have completed the journey of homeschooling and how they reap the benefits of homeschooling beyond the academic years. The talk showcased Dr. Marlyn del Rosario, Rita Yokingco, Irma Chua and Deaonna Tan-Chi.


The afternoon plenary sessions were given by Dr. Michael Tan, the chancellor of UP Diliman and Dr. Debra Bell. Michael Tan talked about the Impact of Homeschooling on Philippine Education.

Dr. Tan mentioned that homeschoolers were ahead in the areas of pedadology or method, creativity and psychosocial.

Dr. Debr Bell talked about Impact of Homeschooling on Families and Learning. The most significant message I heard was that in the conventional school set up, the longer students were there, the less they get interested in learning while the longer students were homeschooled, the higher the academic engagement.

She also shared 8 reasons why kids learn best when they are at home.

At the end of the plenary, HG thanked those who were part of the conference, honored some Family Advisors and announced the Foundation they are putting up to support kids whose parents suddenly gets life threatening sicknesses during the school year.


At the end, there was a concert that showcased HG’s talents and Ben and Ben.

So, what did I really like about the #1stGHC?

– There was something for everyone in the family. The different workshops allowed my family, particularly my daughter, to join me in the plenary and she went to workshops that were for her. She enjoyed most of the talks and I’m glad that she went!

– The Homeschool Exchange had different exhibits than those of previous homeschool conferences.

– The topics were relevant to different kinds of homeschoolers, not only the newbies but also the veterans.

I am definitely looking forward to the future Global Homeschool Conferences!

On Fire! Philippine Homeschool Convention 2018 Workshop Talks

I attended the workshops of Dr. Teresa Moon : Teaching the Most Feared Activity: Public Speaking, Ms. Cassandra Shepherd’s A Look at Homeschool Methodologies and Styles and Ms. Gina Guerrero-Roldan’s Truth, Beauty and Goodness in Your Homeschool.


I was quite surprised with how the first session turned out. I was actually glad to hear from the teens themselves as they shared how they overcame the fear of public speaking and how the program of Dr. Teresa Moon – the ICC – has helped them overcome challenges in speaking.

As a parent-teacher, public speaking is a challenge for me to teach. Not only that, it is often neglected as well. Attending this session has made me realize that as my children are growing older, this is something that they need to be equipped with. It is also an important skill that they would need in their whole lifetime. The reminder “until we speak it, we don’t know what we’re thinking.” truly resonated with me.

The session of Ms. Cassandra Shepherd was all about the homeschool methodologies and style. Though I have been homeschooling for many years now, this session was like a refresher course for me. It gave me a bird’s eye view of what the different methodologies of homeschooling are out there. These are the the different methods she discussed:

  1. School at home
  2. Online Learning
  3. Unit Studies
  4. Classical Education
  5. Charlotte Mason
  6. Montessori
  7. Eclectic Education
  8. Unschooling

The students from ICC also gave their personal stories how homeschooling worked for them and how they adjusted to life situations. It was an encouragement how these students thrived in their own circles.

The session that I was really looking forward to attending was this session by Ms Gina Guerrero-Roldan. I have heard about Ms Gina’s workshops but never have been able to attend one.

 

At the start of her talk, Ms Gina made us memorize scripture from Philippines 4:8. It was a good way to prove a point that we can all do this and it was also the very basis of her whole talk.

Truth, goodness and beauty is necessary in our life and it was something that really made an impact in my heart that day. I have often neglected this and it was a reminder that I needed to change our daily routine or even my perspective on certain homeschooling work that we do.

It is not enough to know a lot of truth if it doesn’t change the way you live.

We need to take time to think, reflect and feel. We also need to prioritize  relationships.

Teach through stories and read poems together. Do art appreciation more often.

If it helps, make a list of things you appreciate.


Here are some ways to do this!

This year’s workshops really made a mark in my heart. I pray that the lessons I learned will be something that I will actively pursue in my life, especially as we start a new school year.

On Fire! Philippine Homeschool Convention 2018 Plenary Talks

This is our 9th year homeschooling, yet it never gets easier. Each year brings its own share of excitement as the new school year brings hope that routines will be established and goals will be achieved. Along with all these excitement, it also brings fear, fear of the unknown and not reaching goals and fears of inadequacy. 

The timing of this year’s Philippine Homeschool Convention by Educating for Life  was perfect as it ushered our last week of vacation and as I was planning for our new school year. My children will be in 9th grade and 6th grade respectively. 

Philippine Homeschool Convention 2018 was quite different from the past conferences as there were 9 plenary speakers and 3 breakout sessions. I was actually glad that there weren’t too many options for the breakout sessions as I always didn’t know which ones I should choose.

On this post, I will share with you all I’ve learned from the plenary speakers.

The first speaker was Cassandra Shepherd. Her talk was entitled You Can Homeschool. She shared her personal experiences being a homeschool parent and how a parent can definitely homeschool her own children. My main take away from this talk is that, it is important for the family to have a vision for homeschooling, because this vision will bring clarity for the things you need to do and to stay within that vision. 

Jayson Lo is a well-known inspirational and motivational speaker. He shared about “homeschooling with a vision”. There are 3Cs which we should build in our homeschool families. CULTURE, CHARACTER and COMPETENCE. Having a growth mindset is of great importance as homeschooling is actually a journey. He also called his 10 year old daughter on stage and she shared about how different she and her sister are and yet the parents can homeschool them effectively.

Michelle Padrelanan is part of the EFL team who organizes the yearly homeschool conferences for the homeschooling community. She has been one of the first people who I asked about homeschooling 9 years ago and it is truly inspiring every time I hear her stories. She shared about her valley and mountaintop experiences as a homeschool parent. She also gave us this acronym to remember:
K now your goals
E ntrust your children to the Lord
E nlist help when needed
P ray

ONwards not backwards.  

Dr. Teresa Moon is  a veteran homeschooling mom, founder of Institute for Cultural Communicators, author and homeschool curriculum writer and speaker at major U.S. homeschool conventions. She addressed the issue of being overly busy. She reminded us that “We gain more time by doing less and gain more energy by loving the less we do.” She also shared 3 Cs which can help us in our homeschooling journey.

Clarity

Connection

Control

The next speaker is Laksmi Maluya. She is the owner of Gopala Learning Haven. She is homeschooled herself and also homeschooled her own children. She shared her personal journey and her advocacy now. Her daughter Vishnu also shared her personal homeschool journey. It was definitely encouraging to listen to her as she was articulate and very confident and very inspirational!

Another example of a homeschooler who actively does her part in saving the environment is Lia Cua. At the young age of 12, she already champions the Earth Crew Kids. She shared how she started Earth Crew Kids and why she does what she does. It is inspiring to know that kids with proper guidance can become productive members of our society.

The next speaker, Rienzie Biolena, shared why it is important to teach financial literacy to children. We don’t want our children to grow up unskilled in this area. He also shared some tips which parents can use to teach about financial literacy to their kids. 

Having a child with special needs can be challenging and Jen Bellosillo shared her own journey of homeschooling her child with special needs. Her talk was an eye-opener for me. If I thought homeschooling was already hard with my own children, it must have been harder to homeschool children with special needs. After the talk, I was just glad how God guided the family to successfully homeschool their child. 

The last speaker was Camille Paguio. She is currently the president of Rotary Club of Alabang Lampara. She’s a product of homeschooling. She shared her personal journey and how homeschooling was able to help her battle depression during her high school years. She also was able to take care of her mom through challenging times. She shared that one’s uniqueness can contribute to the society. She is truly an inspiration and a living proof that homeschooliing works!

I really liked that the different speakers only had limited time each because this allowed them to speak with intentionality and majority of them were really concise and straight to the point. It made the morning very exciting and worth attending!

I was truly grateful that I was able to attend this convention and I went home inspired and on fire for another homeschooling school year!

Watch out for my next post about the breakout sessions.

3 Things I Liked About the Philippine Homeschool Conference 2017

The Philippine Homeschool Conference 2017: Homeschool to the Future happened Oct 7  at Treston International College in Taguig. This is not my first time attending the Philippine Homeschool Conference but it is my first time in this venue.

Before going to the venue, I have downloaded the official PHC 2017 app to guide me with the schedules through out the day!



I have been attending homeschool conferences and this year, I would like to share with you 3 things I really liked about this year’s Philippine Homeschool Conference.

  1. Booths

When I arrived around 845am, there was quite a line at the registration area. I wandered around the Expo area and saw so many booths. I think that the booths this year was a great improvement from the past conferences since major publishing houses were there and there was a wide range of homeschool materials and different services for homeschoolers offered.

 

2. Speakers

The speakers this year was Senator Francis Pangilinan, Mr. Efren Penaflorida Jr. and Ms. Melissa Reinhart. Each one shared his experience and inspired the attendees to homeschool their families.

My favorite would be Mr. Efren Penaflorida Jr. Though his talk was not about homeschooling directly, he was very inspirational. His story showed that we can make a difference in our society if we believe we can and if we do our share. It doesn’t matter if we can only touch one life – because one life can make all the difference.


Ms. Melissa Reinhart shared her personal journey and her homeschooling story. For a homeschool mom like me, it is very encouraging to know that her children grew up pursuing their passions and having a very close knit family.

3. Breakout Sessions

I attended the breakout session :  No Fear! Homeschooling through High School of Racquel Guevara and Mariz Dearos. It was more of a Q & A Session and parents were able to ask questions about how to prepare for high school homeschooling and how to deal with the K12 changes in high school.

It was a very enlightening session. There were practical advises given and it was encouraging to know that we are not the only homeschoolers thinking of homeschooling all the way to Grade 12.

I also attended the breakout session: Technology in Your Homeschool by Donna Simpao. I was not able to capture any photos since my phone ran out of battery.


Donna gave how technology is different for us parents and for the students. She also shared practical tips on using technology in our homeschool.

At the end of the day, it was a reminder that learning comes in different shapes and sizes. We should strive for authentic learning experiences and lean towards developing the 21st century skills in our children.

Another day well spent for a homeschool mom like me!

Philippine Homeschool Conference 2017

For the past years, I have been attending the annual Philippine Homeschool  Conference. It has constantly been a source of inspiration and encouragement for me to go on this less traveled journey of homeschooling. As we have been homeschooling for  the past 7 years now, there are still days that I get frustrated and unsure if what we are doing is enough for my children. Homeschooling conferences always give me that “extra push” I need. The different speakers give me more creative ideas which we implement at home. The products at the Expo always provide good resources which are helpful in making learning at home more fun!

This year’s conference is entitled Homeschool to the Future: Educating for the World of Tomorrow and it is happening on October 7 at Treston International College at BGC in Taguig.

Homeschoolers must learn that education for the future should go beyond mere memory work and these skills are important to succeed : critical thinking skills, creativity, collaboration and problem solving skills.  The conference aims to encourage and equip homeschooling families in their journey through practical breakout sessions, the expo filled with educational materials, and by providing a venue where homeschoolers can meet and gather as a community.

Keynote speakers include:
Sen. Kiko Pangilinan speaking on Back to Basics Parenting in the Technological Age
Efren Penaflorida speaking on Unconventional Education: Empowering the Youth for the Future
Marissa Leinart speaking on The Best Option for Education in the 21st Century: Homeschooling Know Your Kids. Discover Their Passion. Learning Happens

Each attendee can choose 2 Breakout Sessions. Here are the sessions you will choose from:
Session: We Want to Homeschool! Now What?
Session: Homeschool for Free
Session: The Juggling Act: Home Management for Teacher Moms
Session: What I Learned in My Rookie Year of Homeschooling
Session: The Working Homeschool Mom
Session: 7 Tips for Teaching Multiple Age Students Without Losing Your Mind
Session: Narration 101
Session: Carving Out Me-Time for Busy Homeschool Moms
Session: No Fear! Homeschooling Through High School
Session: Technology in Your Homeschool
Session: Raising Financially Literate Kids
Session: That Thing Called “Gap Year”
Session: The Treston Way: Excellent and Ethical Education in a Caring Community

The Early Bird Rate of P800 per person is until Sept 30 only! Hurry! Register now by clicking on this Philippine Homeschool Conference registration link.

See you there!