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Wednesday, May 30, 2012




December 2011 to June 2012

Traditional Home School


  1. Jordan

  2. Deanna


I have found this school year we have engaged in a more relaxed approach to education and have allowed the kids to have a self-directed education, encouraging autodidactism. The list on the following pages will show what they have been doing with their time this reporting period.

Autodidacticism (also autodidactism) is self-directed learning that is related to but different from informal learning. In a sense, autodidacticism is "learning on your own" or "by yourself", and an autodidact is a self-teacher. Autodidacticism is a contemplative, absorptive procession. Some autodidacts spend a great deal of time reviewing the resources of libraries and educational websites. One may become an autodidact at nearly any point in one's life. While some may have been informed in a conventional manner in a particular field, they may choose to inform themselves in other, often unrelated areas.

Autodidactism is only one facet of learning, and is usually complemented by learning in formal and informal spaces: from classrooms to other social settings. Many autodidacts seek instruction and guidance from experts, friends, teachers, parents, siblings, and community.”

quoted from


  1. Temple Grandin Workshop ---$department/EFE.nsf/all/DF6A9B1C5032CE8D872579210061A9E1/$file/FFGA-workshop.pdf
    Wednesday January 18, 2012 at the Alumni Centre at Olds College from 9:30 - 4:30
    Dr. Temple Grandin - Understanding Cattle Behaviour to Improve Handling
    Importance of Reducing Stress During Handling ---
    She has done extensive work on the design of handling facilities. Half the cattle in the U.S. and Canada are handled in equipment she has designed for meat plants. Other professional activities include developing animal welfare guidelines for the meat industry and consulting with McDon-alds, and other companies on animal welfare. In January Temple will be sharing some of her ex-tensive knowledge on animal behaviour and handling at the on-farm level with us!

  2. DVD watched - The Climate Change Skeptics DVD Set (Unstoppable Solar Cycles - The Real Story of Greenland and Climate Catastrophe Cancelled) Presented by Frontier Center

  3. Blog entry January 19, 2012 -- It is moments like this that I really love home education.  Right now my kids are busy downloading and listening to information that they are all of the sudden interested in.  Jordan mentioned he wanted to know more about trigonometry and was checking out lectures via the iTunes U app I posted earlier but wasn’t really connecting with what he found.  So I introduced him to the Khan Academy website and now he is listening to the lectures there and watching the video tutorials.  Deanna found a treasure of animal lectures and more at the iTunes U app and has been downloading some so she can listen to them tomorrow.  How cool is that?  It is moments like these that all my fears of not following the regular education route fly away and I know my kids will be okay even though we have chosen the road less travelled.  :)

  4. DVD watched -- “I AM” - “Director Tom Shadyac speaks with intellectual and spiritual leaders about what's wrong with our world and how we can improve both it and the way we live in it.” quoted from Official Website -

  5. Kids attended the All Candidates Forum at the Sundre Legion 7pm on April 9, 2012. (Provincial election) Jordan was torn on who he would vote for if eligible. He could see that the Wildrose candidate was eager and had all the right answers but that our current MLA with the PC party had the experience and record of doing a great job for our constituency. Deanna decided by the end of the forum that she would vote for the Wildrose candidate if she was eligible.

  6. Watched the Leader's Debate for the provincial election for the provincial election.

  7. Skating days in December and January on our local pond.

  8. Peak Theatre Play in March called “LOOKING”.

  9. Red Deer Homeschool Players Play called “WRANGLER RANCH” in March.

  10. Oprah's Master Class featuring Jon Bon Jovi. ( - “Jon shares the lessons he has learned throughout his life, from never taking no for an answer to honoring your commitments, finding your own path in life and believing in the value of community. And he's still using those lessons to help charities make a difference in the world.”

  11. Sundre Community Choir Spring Concert – April 14.

  12. Planting multiple gardens this spring. We planted our own garden, a garden for our neighbor who is undergoing chemo treatments right now, and our friends the Desrosiers.

  13. Read many novels and watched numerous movies.


  1. Job application practice. (I had Jordan take the time to fill out this application because he had never filled one out before and this particular application asked about his faith life as well. I was interested to see how he would answer. He has shown interest in working in a Christian camp as a horse riding assistant.) -

  2. The Woodworker's Guide to Shop Math --

  3. English for Everyone -

  4. Online guitar lessons at - (He loved using this website for guitar lessons because it allowed him to work at his own pace and also gave him the freedom to do lessons around his full schedule. There were times he was practising midday or other times he would be doing a lesson at 11pm.)

  5. CANADIAN FIREARMS COURSE -- NON-RESTRICTED - March 16-17 -- Written Exam 94%
    Practical Exam 90%

The Canadian Non-Restricted Firearms Course will run Friday, March 16, from 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm, and Saturday, March 17, from 9:00 am until we are finished. Successful completion will allow you to purchase non-restricted rifles and shotguns.

The Non-Restricted Course is a total of 8 hours of instruction; this includes time to safely handle non-working non-restricted firearms and dummy ammunition, and to practise safely handling firearms in range or field situations, as well as safe transportation and storage. There are two tests: a written test (true/false, multiple choice) and a practical test where each person has to individually show me they have learned the material we covered during the course. The end time will depend on the final number of students, and how long it takes each student to complete the practical test. Expect to be here until late in the day. If you have to be somewhere at a specific time (i.e. you have to work, or a important event), please let me know so we can try to accommodate that.  

  1. Volunteered as an assistant coach with the Fun Team Soccer League in Sundre. April to June 2012

  2. Jordan was employed with his uncle at a local sawmill from November 2011 to the end of February 2012.

  3. Jordan has been employed with 43 Ranch Ltd since March 2012 and plans to continue with employment there until June of 2013, at which time he will decide whether or not to stay on with the ranch or pursue other interests and employment elsewhere.

  4. Jordan started a discussion with Wes during the provincial election asking questions about politics, what does right wing and left wing mean, the different political parties in Alberta, and how people perceive campaign promises.

  5. Jordan shopped and saved for his own truck. He was able to pay cash for the truck and insurance. He is now the proud owner of a 1992 GMC half-ton truck. (He also had to have it inspected and repaired for insurance reasons.)

  6. Housesitting job – March 30 to April 01.

  7. Attended all three days of the MANE EVENT in Red Deer in April. Attended a variety of workshops to advance his horse knowledge.

  8. Jordan bought two horse training DVD series to help him with his horse training aspirations. Both sets are by Jonathan Field. The first set is called “Natural Foundation of Horsemanship Collection”. ( The second set is called “The re-Start is Everything.” (

  9. Jordan bought himself a home, which will be moved onto our family property this June.


  1. Learner's Licence studying and online practice exams. She plans to get her learners licence this summer.

  2. iTunes University App --- Deanna listened to various lectures from the ANIMAL SCIENCES DEPARTMENT -  UNIVERSITY OF TENNESSEE, KNOXVILLE. Here are a few – 1. body conditioning scoring, 2. bull to cow ratio, 3. bulls during calving seaon, 4. how many heifers should be kept.

  3. Deanna started writing a book as a project with her friend Nicole.

  4. Deanna's friend Johanna shared this with Deanna: “Maybe you've already seen this but if not read this article and watch the movie: Invisible Children responds to criticism about ‘Stop Kony’ campaign - BlogPost - The Washington Post

  5. Deanna played around with this free program – Google SketchUp -

  6. Deanna attended the “Daines All Black Bull & Heifer Sale”

  7. DVD watched – FORKS OVER KNIVES -- and Forks Over Knives is a 2011 American documentary film directed by Lee Fulkerson, an American independent filmmaker. The film examines the "profound claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods,"[1] principally by tracing the careers and research of American physician Caldwell Esselstyn and professor of nutritional biochemistry T. Colin Campbell.[2]

  8. Still working through Teaching Textbooks ALGEBRA – this will be continued into the next school year.

  9. Started a new blog during calving season called “43 Ranch Reporter”.

  10. New duties during calving season – data entry. Deanna was responsible for entering data on all the calves born and any medical treatment given to calves.

  11. Animal management with her potbellied pigs. Deanna had her sow Daisy bred. There were 4 healthy piglets born. When the piglets were 7 weeks old, she was able to sell all of them. Currently she has her sows bred and are expected to deliver in August 2012.

  12. Deanna acquired a new potbellied pig (a sow) for $5 at the Olds Auction Mart.

  13. Deanna decided to down size her animal herd. She sold her two nanny goats and the potbellied boar. Her current herd includes 4 rabbits, 2 pregnant potbellied pigs, 3 budgies, 3 chickens, 2 dogs and a cow/calf pair.

  14. Variety of babysitting jobs. She gained a new client in April.

  15. Gym Time organized by Central Alberta Homeschool Activities (January). Helped teach a two-stepping class.

  16. Annual fieldtrip to the Innisfail Odd and Unusual Sale. She didn't come home with any pets this year.

  17. Many hours learning new dance moves via the various “Just Dance” games for Wii.

  18. Semen testing the bulls.

  19. Writes poetry on a regular basis, shares it on Facebook with friends and family.

  20. Collecting ideas to explore on Pinterest.

  21. Tried having hermit crabs as pets.

  22. Deanna was given a cow who was pregnant. Deanna now has her own cow herd of two. The cow had a girl.

  23. Working through the book “All About Homophones”.


  1. This has been Jordan's last year as a registered student. He has decided it is time to move on. He is currently employed full time and has bought his first home with plans to move out of the family home this summer. We are not exactly calling this a “graduation” because - “There is no graduation from education.” as quoted by Greg Denning. I have interviewed Jordan as to his plans now that he moving on from being a full time student. I have included the interview with this report.

  2. Deanna will continue on with her algebra curriculum.

  3. I am hoping to get Deanna involved in a variety of volunteer opportunities that align with her interests and future plans. She loves animals and children, so I am hoping to get in with the local daycare or playschool and maybe the vet's office or one of the dog groomers.

  4. Deanna would like to operate a housekeeping business after high school, so we may find resources (books, mentors, work opportunities) for this industry to help her further explore this option.


  1. said by Cindy Rushton on her FB page: Did we homeschool so our children would value education more than anything in this life? No. We homeschooled our children first and foremost so they would value relationship first and foremost. Relationship with God, family, church, friends, the world--first. Today, I am so blessed to see both of my children with a priority for relationships. A priority for family. An education is nice. Books are nice. But, it is all empty if education is the mark. An education should first prepare our children for LIFE. The main thing God created us for is relationship. Anything else is a cheap substitute that will bring emptiness. God, give us Your vision, Your priorities, Your best. When we seek YOU first, all these THINGS are added. Help us to see clearly what YOU want in all things and never settle for less than your best.

  2. "As regards knowledge, we need to avoid approaches that imply that everyone needs to know the same bank of information and that learners of the same age need to know identical things. Subjects--the staple diet of schools--are only a minor part of the toolkit of knowledge and are declining in importance and, in any case, learning the toolkit does not constitute an education. We do, however, need another kind of knowledge to be effective in the modern world--to know how to find out, to learn, relearn and unlearn, and how to manage our own learning. In other words we need to become competent, capable and confident researchers." by Roland Meighan in the essay Restructuring Education So it Works for Kids and Society from the book Life Learning: Lessons from the Educational Frontier

  3. "It's obviously impossible to learn more than even a tiny fraction of the accumulated knowledge that exists. It seems to me that the great thing about having so much to learn is that there's plenty to go around--every person's 'tiny fraction' can be unique at the same time that it overlaps with other people's fraction. Our lives are short, so why learn about anything unless it's necessary or meaningful?" by Sarabeth Matilsky in the essay What is Education? from Life Learning: Lessons from the Educational Frontier

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