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Homeschoolers Of Wyoming (H.O.W.)
E-News November Issue 10, Volume 4


MEET YOUR NEWEST HOW BOARD MEMBER
Jake and Casey Cheser are the newest member of the Homeschoolers of Wyoming board and are very excited to be a part of such a wonderful organization! Jake and Casey were both raised in Christian homes and Casey was homeschooled all her life. They married shortly after they met and had a precious baby boy 11 months later. Little Derek Wiley is now 7 months old and keeping his parents on their toes. Having a little one who is growing so fast confirmed Jake and Casey’s convictions to have a homeschool family. They did not want their little boy going to public school and learning everything the Bible warns against. The Bible also commands parents to raise and train their own children. So, with the Bible as their family foundation, Jake, Casey, and Derek are looking forward to serving on the HOW board and helping other families for many years to come!

MEET TWO HOW COUNTY CONTACTS
Karen Stewart in Sublette County
My name is Karen Stewart, and I am the county contact for Sublette County. My husband Dan and I homeschool our two sons, Nathan and Aaron. We are active in our local church, Emmanuel Baptist of Pinedale. We enjoy camping, hiking, and Alpine skiing. Dan and the boys are avid unicyclists and can be seen unicycling in Pinedale's various parades. Our boys have a heart for memorizing scripture, and they participate in the Bible Bee every summer. We like to travel in our camper to various state and National Parks throughout the West, and we especially love the freedom and flexibility of homeschooling!
 
Sublette County has a diverse group of over 30 homeschooling families, representing a variety of religious affiliations. We do several field trips together each year. Our fall favorite is a trip to Riverton to the Son Harvest Seasons Farm to pick out our pumpkins and get lost in their amazing corn maze!

We also perform a monthly program at the Sublette Center, our local nursing home. The children sing a variety of hymns and songs, quote scripture, recite poetry, play musical instruments, and sing solos for the residents. This has been a blessing to the senior citizens living there, as well as giving our children the opportunity and experience of getting up in front of a group. In addition, a group of homeschooling moms with young children gets together weekly for lunch and playtime at the town park.

Micaela Reeves in Crook County
I live in Moorcroft with my husband, Jim, and two sons, Thaen and Caeden. We are all heavily involved in Cub and Boyscouting. We have done a lot of things at home: home birthed, home educate, attend a home church, and we make our own home herbal remedies.

We really don't have a support group in Crook County. I know of about 8 families, other than ours, who homeschool in our general area. Four of us are involved in scouting. If anyone wanted to take the mantle and get a group started, I would be pleased. There are a few families who take advantage of some of the activities that the Gillette Christian Home Educators have put together.



THANKSGIVING
By Jan Loftus
1st Thessalonians 5:18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. We are to be His thankful people. We want to teach thankfulness to our children. This month we remember the first Thanksgiving and may be teaching about it in our homeschools.

I typed "benefits of poetry memorization" in the search engine and many sources displayed. Here is one that speaks of improvement in children's speaking and writing capabilities. Consider this: I could say, "Wow, what a hard time I'm living through, yet I know God is with me." That's pretty good isn't it? Or how much better is this: "Yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death I shall fear no evil. For Thou art with me."

Since poetry memorization will help our children speak and write better, and since the Bible says in Psalm 119:11 "Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You" consider helping your children learn some Psalms. Psalm 100 is a Psalm of Thanksgiving and a possible place to start.

For several years my children and I spent 20 minutes of our homeschool day singing scripture. You can buy scripture put to music, which makes memorizing easier and fun. It is one of our fond memories of homeschooling. My son was 8 or 9 years old when he sang Psalm 19 for Sheridan homeschool support group Presentation Club. You might expect his mom to be touched, but a couple of the other mothers had tears in their eyes. God is so good.

Let us look ahead with thankfulness, praise, courage, and peace.

Links
Washington & Lincoln Thanksgiving Proclamations & Resources

Thanksgiving Activities

LEGISLATIVE UPDATE
By Jan Loftus

There is one thought foremost on my mind since the election Tuesday: Will we maintain homeschooling freedom? Most of you know what is happening in Europe with country after country outlawing homeschooling. Do you get the parentalrights.org emails? Did you read that Alberta, Canada, came within one vote of outlawing private school and homeschool? Did you read that Delaware has outlawed spanking?

We have a choice to make. We can stick our heads in the sand and hope for the best or we can work.

United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) and United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) both give to the government decision making authority for children. Both will work to destroy families if our U.S. Senate ratifies them. The CRPD will be brought to the Senate floor soon. Both our Senators oppose the CRC and are cosponsors of the Parental Rights Amendment. However, Senator Barrasso voted to support CRPD in committee.

1. Pray.

2. Consider sending a donation to Homeschool Freedom Fund.
Decide on a monthly donation you can afford--$5 or more for parentalrights.org. They need more staff and Wyoming can make a great contribution toward this if we all give a bit.

3. Contact Senator Barrasso within the week and ask him not to support these UN treaties because they damage families.

Read here for more information about UN Convention on the Rights of Persons With Disabilities.

Leadership and Government
by Brenna Lowry

Have you ever wanted a practical method to teach your children the legislative process? TeenPact is a national organization committed to teaching leadership skills along with the pragmatics of the legislative process. The Wyoming state class will be held February 11-14th 2013 for youth ages 13-18. In past years, many students have traveled from across the state to attend this event, so we have an especially great opportunity since it is held in Cheyenne!

Because of the hands-on focus, youth are able to experience first-hand the steps to draft a bill, present it to the committee and defend it among their peers. Many skills are enhanced in the preparation of the class such as critical thinking, the ability to present ideas publicly and a more thorough understanding of how our legislature makes and passes laws.

Just a few of the highlights of the weeklong session for 13-18 year olds include: a prayer tour of the Capitol, listening to speeches from conservative legislators and citizens, chances to present and defend a bill and debate bills of other students, as well as the chance to campaign for State Senator or Governor if the student chooses to do so. The students come from around the state and form a great group of positive interaction, resulting in some lifelong friendships. In the afternoons they break for ultimate Frisbee at the park. Afterward, the students share a meal followed by an inspiring corporate worship service and message.

Do you have a child younger than 13? TeenPact has a group for them as well!
Children ages 8-13 are able to attend Teeny Pact – a one-day class on Friday February 15th 2013. This class teaches all of the same skills on their age level in a one-day format.

Register soon and receive a $60 scholarship toward the cost of tuition! Please check out the TeenPact information that is included and visit http://www.Teenpact.com to register and receive your early bird discount.

Wyoming History Day
By Sharie Prout

I am the District 2 coordinator for Wyoming History Day, the local component of the National History Day program, and trying to spread the word about the compeition to homeschool groups, and get more students involved! Have you heard about this program?

National History Day is a highly regarded academic program for students in grades six through twelve. Each year, more than half a million students, encouraged by thousands of teachers nationwide, participate in the NHD contest. Students choose historical topics related to a theme and conduct extensive primary and secondary research through libraries, archives, museums, oral history interviews and historic sites. After analyzing and interpreting their sources and drawing conclusions about their topics’ significance in history, students present their work in original papers, websites, exhibits, performances and documentaries. These products are entered into competitions in the spring at local, state and national levels, where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators.

The 2013 theme is “Turning Points in History: People, Ideas, Events.” Projects can relate to all three points—people, ideas, and events, or students can choose to focus on just one of these: either how people, an idea, or an event was a turning point in history. Some of the sample topics given are The Great Railroad Strike of 1877 and the American Labor Movement, and The Beatles and the British Invasion.

My district emcompasses Crook, Campbell, Johnson, Niobrara, Sheridan, and Weston Counties, but there are other districts in the state to compete in if for students outside of this area! The students just need a coach- either a teacher, or someone in the community that could help guide their projects. For example, we have a museum director in Sheridan who has put together a "history club" since the Sheridan public schools haven't been able to take the time to compete anymore, and a museum registrar in Buffalo is trying to do the same thing there.

This year, students are first competing in the district contest here in Sheridan at Sheridan College on Friday, February 8, 2013. Those who place first, second, or third will have the opportunity to go on to the state competition in April, held in Laramie. Winners from that competition are eligible to go to the National History Day competition in June, held at the University of Maryland!

If there are more local groups that I could contact, I'd be happy to do so. Just trying to find a place to start!

I've listed some helpful websites that more thoroughly explain the program and requirements. If you'd like more information, please feel free to contact me, too! I am more than happy to explain the program further, and answer any questions.

http://www.nationalhistoryday.org/ (The National History Day site)

http://www.nationalhistoryday.org/annualtheme.htm (2013 theme page)

http://www.uwyo.edu/ahc/eduoutreach/historyday/index.html (Wyoming History Day page)

http://wy.nhd.org/ (The page you’ll register on for the local competition)

Thanks!
Sharie Prout
District 2 History Day Coordinator
Trail End State Historic Site Curator
307.674.4589
sharie.prout@wyo.gov

 

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