Homeschool classes at the Discovery Center Museum

Discovery Center Museum
711 North Main Street
Rockford, Illinois 61103
(815) 963-6769

The Discovery Center Museum is offering special homeschool classes on Wednesdays this fall. These are geared toward a variety of ages and have an extra fee in addition to the regular admission rate.

See How We See I

Grab a scalpel — we’re dissecting animal eyes to see how we see. Examine lenses, make a camera obscura, find your blind spot, and more! Not for the squeamish.

Wednesday, October 7
Session 1: ages 6-7; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 2: ages 8-9; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 3: ages 10 & up; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 4: ages 6 & up 3:30-5:00;

See How We See II

Take your vision to task and find out what makes colorful colors. Explore persistence of vision, negative after images, and the inner workings of the human eye.

Wednesday, November 4
Session 1: ages 6-7; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 2: ages 8-9; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 3: ages 10 & up; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 4: ages 6 & up 3:30-5:00;

See How We See III

“Scope” out reflection as you make a working periscope, design a kaleidoscope, and use mirrors to play laser tag.

Wednesday, December 9
Session 1: ages 6-7; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 2: ages 8-9; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 3: ages 10 & up; 11:00-12:30 p.m.
Session 4: ages 6 & up 3:30-5:00
Contact the museum for more information or for mail in registration forms. Registration is either by phone or mail.

Homeschool classes at the Centre in ELgin

Coming this fall the Elgin Park District offers homeschoolers its regular gym and swim classes as well as a new ceramics class.

The following information taken from the Elgin Park District Brochure:

Home School Gym & Swim

Hey Home Schoolers – we have the perfect way to add physical fitness and socialization time to your curriculum. Our Gym and Swim program features a one-hour swim lesson and one-hour physical education class each week. A variety of sports and cooperative games will be played in our gym time and children will have some free time in our Adventure Island aquatic center at the end of their swim lesson. BL

Length: 10 Weeks
Resident Fee: $54
Non-Res Fee: $64
Min/Max: 28/60
Instructor: Staff Member
: $50
Location: The Centre, Fieldhouse Court #1

Course #         Date Day                            Time                                           Age
4475                   9/15-11/17                    Tue 1:00-3:00 pm             5-15 Yrs
4476                  9/16-11/18                      Wed 1:00-3:00 pm           5-15 Yrs
4477                 9/17-11/19                      Thu 1:00-3:00 pm             5-15 Yrs

Home School Youth Ceramics

Home School Children can add art to their daily curriculm by taking a ceramics class. This 1 ½ hr. class will have children learning to use coils, slabs and pinch pots to build pottery and sculptures in this guided step-by-step handbuilding class. All projects will be glazed and kiln fired. Since clay can be messy please dress appropriately. JM

Age: 6-15 yrs.
Instructor: Nancey Buechner
Resident Fee: $52
Non-Res Fee
: $57
Length: 1.5hrs/wk/5wks
Min/Max: 8/12
Location: The Centre, Ceramics Studio

Course #         Date Day                         Time
4700         11/12 – 12/17 Thur           1:00 – 2:30 pm

CHAMPs orientation meeting

As we race toward the start of school, don’t forget to consider how co-ops may play a part in your homeschooling. The Chicago area offers an abundance of classes and support group for you to plug into. Check out the tabs at the top of this site for many options. Many of these host get-acquainted opportunities this time of year. As we become aware of them, we will post them here.

CHAMPs homeschool co-op is having a parent and teacher orientation night

When: Monday, Aug 3 from 7-9 

Where: Mount Prospect Bible Church, 505 W Golf Rd, Mt Prospect (just west of Rt 83, south side of street)

You can view the CHAMP’s website for information on classes and schedules.   If you would like to meet the teachers and ask about classes or the co-op program, please come join them on August 3. 
-Cheryl Seda

Crusaders Homeschool Sports


Now is the time for fall sports to start picking up speed.

Based in Big Rock, Crusaders have a number of sports available to homeschoolers including basketball, soccer, volleyball, track and a PE class.

See their website (Crossroads Youth Center) for additional information or to register your child(ren) for some fall activities.

IEW seminars coming up in the Chicago area

A Reminder…

Institute for Excellence in Writing
Announces events with Andrew Pudewa:

Elmhurst, IL (Chicago Area): August 4-6, 2009 – IEW Seminars
Hoffman Estates, IL (Chicago Area): 6, 2009 – Evening Event
Chicago, IL: August 7-8, 2009 – Chicago Homeschool Expo

Details and links below – Please forward this to friends and colleagues!

Elmhurst, IL (Chicago Area): August 4-6, 2009 – IEW Seminars
Details below, to register:
Tues., 8/4: High School Essay Intensive
Wed. & Thurs., 8/5-6: Teaching Writing: Structure & Style

Elmhurst Christian Reformed Church
155 W. Brush Hill Road
Elmhurst, IL 60126

Hoffman Estates, IL (Chicago Area): August 6, 2009 – Evening Event
6:00pm-8:30pm No Registration Necessary!
Andrew Pudewa: Conquering Corrupt Culture by Raising Christian Communicators
& Classical Conversations’ Kim Cromer:
Going Beyond the Books–Practical Application for Classical Education

Korean Church of Chicago
1500 W Algonquin Rd
Hoffman Estates, IL 60192

Chicago, IL: August 7-8, 2009 – Chicago Homeschool Expo
Andrew’s Talks: ”Freedomship” Education Paradigm, Reaching the Reluctant Writer, Spelling and the Brain, Teaching Boys & Other Children Who Would Rather Be Making Forts All Day, Instant Improvement in Writing
Seminar Descriptions:

Teaching Writing: Structure and Style
A Two-Day Seminar for Teachers, Parents, Tutors, College Students
Cost: $89.00/participant (2nd family member ½ price)

The structure and style syllabus teaches models and techniques for English composition which logically build upon each other, allowing students to become familiar and competent with a variety of writing formats and styles. As opposed to many “creative” writing approaches, this more classical system stresses modeling and builds a firm foundation of specific skills.

Students first make a “key word outline” and then rewrite from their notes, thus being freed from the problem of what to write about, so they are able to clearly focus on how to write well. As they master each structural model and stylistic technique, they develop great confidence, and consequently great creativity. The syllabus then gradually moves the student from dictated content toward “the blank page” using:

Eight different structural models, including:
* Note making and summarizing from notes; limiting skills.
* Summarizing narrative stories with the story sequence chart.
* Summarizing references (without copying the encyclopedia).
* Library research reports using multiple references and fused outlines.
* Topic – clincher paragraph format, techniques for titling.
* Creative writing, letters and writing from pictures.
* Formal essays and critique formats.

The Syllabus in Style introduces specific techniques to help students:
* “Dress-up” each paragraph with six different tools.
* Use a variety of sentence “openers.”
* Judiciously choose literary “decorations.”
* Learn English grammar in the context of USING it, rather than just memorizing terms and identifying parts of speech.
High School Essay Intensive
A One-Day Seminar for High School age students and teachers
Cost: $50.00/participant (parents $25 if attending with student*)

The High School Essay Prep class is an excellent way to get immediate experience and inside tips on how to do your best on the timed, 25 minute response to a prompt required on the new SAT test. Participants will actually write two full essays, carefully study and then apply the College Board evaluation criteria to sample essays, while receiving a detailed booklet of resources and suggestions for continued practice.

Additionally, students will learn special structure and style tools for use in composing the college application “personal essay”an entirely different type of writing task. The complete process will be presented: choosing the question, creating the outline, and polishing a final version. Participants will leave with a clear concept of the task, their own outline for an actual personal essay, and several new tricks and techniques to add to their repertoire.

Although this seminar is specifically designed for those who will be taking the SAT or submitting college applications within the next 1-2 years (and especially those teaching such students), it is also useful for general writing practice, tools and tips. It is open to all students, regardless of their experience with IEW courses or materials. A lot of actual writing is done during this six-hour class.

*Parents who wish only to observe are welcome to do so, space available. Paying participants will receive a space at a table and a handout.

Have you heard of Currclick?

If you are not familiar with their weekly freebies, you will at least want to check out their site and sign up for their email updates. They also offer a variety of virtual classes for homeschoolers. To find out more, read on in this excerpt taken from an email:

Planning your 2009-2010 School Year?

There are still spots available in our July 15th open house and kids activity. Get enrollment discounts and have fun. Don’t miss out!

Sign up for CurrClick Live’s Meet and Greet Open House from 7-9 PM CST including a FREE, totally live kids activity presented by Heart of the Matter Online: Amy Bayliss and her son will be leading a Flat Stanley, pen pal activity for kids of all ages!
Teachers will be answering questions, giving presentations about their classes and “handing out” enrollment discounts!

You can register here, right now!

Once you register at CurrClick, go here to register with GoToMeeting.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining our open house. Please note that you are not required to show up to every single session during the 2 hour period. Please see the itinerary below to determine which sessions you would
like to attend.


Wieck Math and Science LC: Melinda Wieck discusses the Beginning and Advanced, Live Algebra classes she’ll be offering in the fall. Melinda is a highschool Math and Science teacher.


Bright and Blessed: Susan Bertrang is a Georgia Certified Teacher with over 10 years of teaching experience. Find out about her wide variety of fun, self-paced classes such as, “Getting to Know Shakespeare” and ‘Writing Well.”


Lessons Worth Learning: Loretta Rhodes, homeschool Mom of 4 and a teacher of 20 years talks about her very popular live History, Geography and Literature classes and answers questions.


Triple G Academy:Angie Marcum talks about her popular Art and Nature classes as well as her academic Saxon-based Algebra I and II classes. Mrs. Marcum is a homeschool Mom with her BS in Secondary Mathmatics.


Become a CurrClick Live Teacher Q&A:Interested in teaching for CurrClick Live? Attend this discussion, find out more and get your questions answered. Staley Krause, one of the CurrClick/CurrClick Live founders discusses the ins and outs of teaching for CurrClick Live.


MathTools: Patrick Martin, homeschool Dad and Math teacher and tutor, will discuss his live math lab, where he helps students with math problems they may be having, and his 1 on 1 live tutoring option.


Heart of the Matter Online:Night time activity for kids courtesy of Amy Bayliss and her son from Heart of the Matter Online.

We look forward to “seeing” you there.  And, don’t forget to bring a friend!

Acting workshop

The following is from Katie Cheely:

I am offering an Acting workshop with my theater company in the next
couple weeks, and we are also performing “Twelfth Night” and
“Pilgrim’s Progress” in the Chicago area.

“Explore the Spotlight” is a four day Acting workshop for kids, ages
11 – 18. A great workshop for all levels of experience – from
beginning to advanced – and for anyone who wants to have fun:)

Students get to take a variety of classes taught by theater
professionals, perform for friends and family on the final day, and
see two exciting premiere productions!

Classes are Monday – Thursday, June 22-25, from 2 pm – 6:30 pm at
Stage One. Topics include Improvisation, Stage Combat, Scene Study,
Acting Shakespeare, Stage Makeup, and Acting a Song.

Students get to see “Pilgrim’s Progress” Wed, June 24, and “Twelfth
Night” Thurs, June 25, both at 8pm at Stage One.

This is a schedule of our performances:

Our first show is Shakespeare’ s “Twelfth Night.” This high-energy,
6-person adaptation of Shakespeare’ s popular comedy invites you to
the earthy island of Illyria, where impulse and instinct reign, and
the characters search for love despite much mischief and

Showtimes and locations for “Twelfth Night” are:

Thurs, June 18 – Grand Crossing Park 12pm
7655 S. Ingleside Ave, Chicago

Thurs, June 18 – Skinner Park 6pm
1331 W. Adams St., Chicago

Fri, June 19 – Ravenswood Manor Park 5:30 pm
4626 N. Manor Ave, Chicago

Sat, June 20 – Portage Park 12pm
4100 N Long Ave, Chicago

Sun, June 21 – St. Odilo’s 3pm
2301 S. Clarence, Berwyn

Thurs, June 25 – Stage One – 8pm
620 Lee Street, Des Plaines

Our second show is “Pilgrim’s Progress: A New Journey,” a modern
musical retelling of the classic allegory of one man’s journey to
“Celestial City.”

Showtimes and locations for “Pilgrim’s” are:

Wed, June 17 – St. Michael’s 7pm
310 S. Wheaton Ave, Wheaton

Wed, June 24 – Stage One 8pm
620 Lee St., Des Plaines

For more information, visit our website:

Feel free to contact me with any questions, or for any further details!!

-Katie Cheely
UnCovered Theatre Company

Masterpiece Art classes updates

Masterpiece Art Instruction
411 Locust Street
North Aurora, IL 60542

Some updates on June art camps – “Exploring the World with Pastels”

1. The June 8-11 camp has been moved from Hobby Lobby in Aurora to Community Christian Church in Naperville (corner of Ogden and Rickert).

2. The June 15-18 camp has been cancelled due to low enrollment.

3. A class has been added at the home of Holly Ramsey in Naperville.  It will run June 22-25. There are some open seats – online registration is available.

You can sign up for the available camps online at:

“Exploring the World” Art Camp (ages 7-12)

Students will depict various scenes from around the world using soft pastels to create beautiful, frame-worthy pieces of art. As always, Karine will draw along with her students and introduce them to drawing and rendering techniques.

Time: 2-4 PM
Ages: 7-12
Fee: $50 per student (due at first class)


Other summer art classes:

* Art Careers Worshops (ages 11-18)
* Outdoor Sketching Workshops

Learn more and register online at: