Friday, July 31, 2015

Atlanta Zoo for Science School?

Today we went to Zoo Atlanta to scout out possible learning experiences for the upcoming school year.  The question was asked, "Can you teach an entire science curriculum with a membership at the Atlanta Zoo?"

Stay tuned for the answer!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Mom's Night Out! Sort-of :-)

South Cobb Homeschoolers is an active support group made by moms and led by moms.  At the beginning of each year, we get together to decide what monthly themes we want to cover based on our science and social studies curriculum.  Our monthly field trips and activities are then planned around these themes.  Join us for our Mom's Night Out aka our planning session.  Please see the details below.

Who?  Homeschool Moms of Kids K-5
What?  South Cobb Homeschoolers 2015-2016 Planning Session & Registration
When?  Thursday, August 6 at 6:30 pm
Where?  Chik-fil-A @ Thornton Road
835 Thornton Rd Lithia Springs, GA 30122
Why?  To plan our activities for the 2015-2016 school year.

What to bring?  Bring any science/social studies curriculum/ideas, a pen, a folder and paper!

If you like what you see at the planning session, you will be able to register as a member!

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Getting Ready for School

It's almost that time again.  Back to School sales are up and on the way and as a homeschool parent you are also starting to think about the 2015-2016 school year.

If your resolution is like mine, it is to be more organized and accomplished!

Here are two documents you need to help you get started.

  1. The Homeschool Calendar
  2. The Homeschool Planner
    • This document can be downloaded in Word or as a PDF.  It helps you to remember the big picture and break it down into smaller chunks for each month and each week.  It has a weekly menu, daily schedule, monthly plan and yearly goals.
    • Click here to download the Word version
    • Click here to download the PDF version

Monday, July 6, 2015

Guest Blog Post - Classroom Laboratory at the Edge of Space: Introducing the Mini-Cube Program

Gregory N. Cecil
“In November of 2013, Grace Lutheran Middle School Science students, under the instruction of Mr. Cecil, embarked on the longest and most complicated endeavor ever done in their short academic careers, called, “Mini-Cube.” The Mini-Cube Project was completed in May of 2014.

The students at Grace Lutheran worked to design, build, and package 16 experiments to be sent to an altitude of 100,000 feet or 20 miles, more commonly known as “the edge of space” by high altitude balloon.” – Opening statement to parents at the opening of the cubes by the students.

Sending experiments to the “edge of space” may seem to be an expensive feat capable only by NASA, but many students as young as age 11 (6th grade) have been designing multiple experiments and sending them up for several years now for less than $350.00 per flight using JP Aerospace’s Mini-Cube Program. The book, Classroom Laboratory at the Edge of Space, was written by former space shuttle worker and science teacher Gregory Cecil to show step by step how this “informal” STEM Project Based Learning Activity can be carried out by most secondary and homeschools in an affordable manner and within the traditional school year based on the “lessons learned” by this author and his students. This activity will result in a once in a lifetime opportunity for students to conduct real science in their own space program at the “edge of space.”

“A Mini-Cube is a 5 cubic centimeter plastic cube that can be modified in any manner by a team or group of teams to accommodate their experiment(s) and is flown to an altitude of 100,000 feet or 20 miles by high altitude balloon to the “edge of space” by JP Aerospace. The cube can hold 4 or more trays or racks of experiments and the total weight cannot exceed 240 grams.” (Cecil, M.A.S., 2015)

This book was written for secondary public and private school STEM instructors, home schooling, and undergraduate STEM courses of study explaining how to set up their own student focused “space program” utilizing the Mini-Cube Program. With this STEM Project Based Learning Activity, students can have the unique, affordable, and challenging opportunity to send experiments via high altitude balloon to an altitude of 100,000 feet (20 miles or 32 km), commonly known as the “edge of space.”

Utilizing the scientific method, team work, research, and communicating in writing the results and applications for peer review, students will participate in the full cycle of an actual experiment from the original question to the published results and conduct true science at the edge of space.

“Classroom Laboratory at the Edge of Space: Introducing the Mini-Cube Program” can be found on Amazon Kindle at A print version is also available, go to

Please note that this author does not work for nor receives any compensation from JP Aerospace.

Gregory N. Cecil, M.A.S.
K-12 Outreach and Social Media Coordinator-SpaceTEC
SpaceTEC Nationally Certified Aerospace Technician
Adjunct Instructor Aerospace Technology Program-Eastern Florida State College
CEO-AeroSTEM Consulting, LLC
Author: Classroom Laboratory at the Edge of Space: Introducing the Mini-Cube Program

Gregory N. Cecil, M.A.S. is the only Florida State Certified Educator and Nationally Certified Aerospace Technician in the nation. Currently, Greg provides Aerospace STEM consulting for schools and companies, conducts workshops for STEM teachers, and gives presentations on subjects related to STEM and Human Spaceflight.

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Ode to a Homeschool Mom by Teri Ann Berg Olsen

As a wife, mother, and home educator
You are the embodiment of life, love, and laughter.
Even at times when you do not feel respected,
You are adored by the children you’ve directed.

Your chosen career means there is much to do,
For you are your children’s best teacher, too–
Training them to walk, to talk and say “please,”
Plus reading, writing, math, and social studies.

Gathering books from the library, you strive
To read aloud and bring history alive.
You take kids on field trips and nature hikes,
Arrange play days and set up movie nights.

You are a modern “Renaissance woman,”
Instructing every one of your children
In all of the fine arts and sciences
While you also pursue your own interests.

You are a housekeeper, nurse, cook, janitor,
Counselor, cheerleader, and a whole lot more.
You can give a lesson and bake a cake
While tying a shoe and mending a break.

You teach your children for most of the day,
And carefully listen to what they have to say.
Rather than measuring by height, grade or year,
You track their growth by the character they wear.

You routinely put your family first
And do your best to fix every hurt.
Your heart is full of compassion showing
You are quite wise and always knowing.

Your life is not as glorious as some,
With many days taken up by tedium.
You rarely get what you truly deserve,
As anyone else would surely observe.

But even amid the worst of all days,
Happiness is found in a special way.
God is your strength and Jesus is your mentor;
As you honor Him, He blesses your endeavor.

Copyright by Teri Ann Berg Olsen. Used with permission. Teri is a home educator and author of the book Learning for Life: Educational Words of Wisdom. Visit her website at