Author Archive

Let Your Child Reassure You

Let Your Child Reassure You

Nothing reassures you the way your children’s own growth does. Recognize the spark of learning, the personality of your kids popping through their writing, the happy confidence of accomplishment in any task. Then you’ll know you’re on the right track.

A wise friend once said that when she doubted her child’s progress or felt worried about an interest, she would get some time alone with that child—lunch or a shake. She’d ask her child about that interest, she’d open space for a conversation that interested the child. She said she’s never had a one-hour time alone with a child that didn’t remind her that her child was learning and growing just as she had hoped.

Do it.

  • Take time to listen,
  • to be with,
  • to observe

Be amazed all over again (the same way you were amazed when your bigger kid was a baby).

Let your child reassure you.

Your kids are learning!


This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!


Brave Learner Home

Don’t Forget to Include Yourself

Don't Forget to Include Yourself

Your interests. They not only fuel your homeschool, they fuel you!

When you follow an interest, you discover that you’re a smart person—that you have curiosity and skill and capacity to grow.

Tapping into your interests:

  • improves your outlook on life,
  • allows your children to see you happy and learning,
  • makes adulthood look awesome,
  • and gives your kids a role model for what it means to pursue an interest.

You may find that what you love enhances a school subject or acts as a key to unlock a previously opaque subject. Your curiosity is aroused which allows you to be creative!

For instance, if you are suddenly into sewing, you may whip up a batch of capes for dress up clothes for history or tea cozies for poetry teatime. If you get curious about native plants to use in landscaping, where might that lead in your family? Might you discover the history of where you live, how the original inhabitants lived with those trees and shrubs?

Let your interests lead you, so that you can lead your children into a world of skill and happiness. An education is fueled by connections and joy in learning. Bring yours to the table!


This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!


Brave Learner Home

Evidence of Growth

Evidence of Growth

Every day your kids show up to learn. They open themselves to your leadership. They offer you their trust. They put faith in you to:

  • support,
  • teach,
  • guide,
  • and love them.

And so you design an education for them.

Here’s where it gets sticky.

If your focus is on the education more than the child, it’s easy to get impatient, anxious, and annoyed when your child doesn’t live up to your expectations.

Instead look for the evidence of growth: notice the risk.

  • A child who handwrote even after saying handwriting is hard: perseverance.
  • Finishing the page even if some of the answers are wrong: effort and practice.
  • Strong emotional reaction to a book you’re reading: attentive listener, invested.

Turn the evidence before you into a commentary on your child’s skills and development, not a verdict on your homeschool or you.

You can do it!


This post is originally from Instagram and @juliebravewriter is my account there so come follow along for more conversations like this one!


Brave Learner Home

Brave Learner Home: March 2021

I have a little saying to describe how many of us actually homeschool:

Classical education in the fall,
Charlotte Mason in the winter…
Unschooling in the spring!

You know the drill: as the year unwinds, so do our starchy plans! And that’s a-okay because homeschooling has that kind of flexibility.

So even though snow is piling up by the inches in many parts of the country, I promise you: 

Spring is coming! 

And just in time, we’re offering inspiration and information about unschooling in Brave Learner Home.

Our March Master Class on Unschooling will help you understand this approach to education, whether you’re on your way to embracing unschooling year round or just interested in borrowing some unschooling techniques for a few months. 

Sue Patterson from Unschooling Mom2Mom will answer your questions and share her practical tips to make unschooling work. And Sue knows—her unschooled children are now all young adults with successful careers, degrees, and families! 

You won’t want to miss Sue’s webinar and this Brave Learner Home Master class coming to Brave Learner Home in March! 


March 2021 Webinar

Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Unschooling, but Were Afraid to Ask 

  • Can you unschool a little bit?
  • Everything but math?
  • How do you meet state requirements?
  • Can unschoolers get into college?
  • What can you learn from unschoolers even if you don’t plan to unschool?
  • Are unschooled kids unruly?
  • Can I unschool even if we need to follow a routine at home? 

If you have these or other questions about unschooling, join us and Sue Patterson

  • Thursday, March 11, 7 pm ET
  • Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Unschooling, but were Afraid to Ask 

Our March speaker in Brave Learner Home, Sue is known for her kindness and patience as she helps parents explore the unschooling approach. She is a homeschooling coach and founder of Unschooling Mom2Mom. She helps parents find creative ways to approach learning and reconnect with their children when their current educational option isn’t working.  

Active in the homeschooling community for twenty five years, Sue is the author of the book Homeschooled Teens : 75 Young People Speak about their without School.She has been featured in numerous magazines, podcasts, and interviews, as well as at conferences around the country


Join the Brave Learner Home


Brave Learner Home

Focus on Meaning

Focus on Meaning

Brave Writer is different from other writing programs because we use a contextualized approach to:

  • literature,
  • grammar,
  • and mechanics instruction.

Rather than a linear-sequential approach, we focus on meaning-making (how children internalize what they are learning, rather than merely being exposed to material and tested on it).

The Arrow is a literature-rich program that allows parents and children to learn about the mechanics of writing as well as grammar and literary devices. These are taught through the literature and lead to depth of understanding and personal insight.

If you begin with the Arrow, you will cover a wide variety of grammar and writing mechanics concepts this year. Your child will experience great literature. You will discover how to connect to your learner.

To add a writing component, take it one thing at a time. If your child is needing help learning to put pen to paper and gain confidence, I recommend either:

If you feel comfortable with the writing process, start with Jot it Down or Partnership Writing to add what we call writing projects (writing assignments). These are month-long excursions into writing that result in a completed work (poem, report, letter, etc.).


Arrows and Boomerangs