2016 Homeschool Conference Schedule


Click on the session titles below for more information 
or scroll down to see a complete description of all the offerings.


Room A

Room B

Room C

Room D

DLC Classroom

Courtyard

Session 1


10-11am

Choosing Meaningful Learning Over Schooling


Copywork, Dictation, and Reverse Dictation


Setting the Stage for Learning

Dads Roundtable


Magic the Gathering Card Game


Playdough Time for Kids


Session 2


11am-noon

Grown Homeschoolers Panel


9-Lines Tic Tac Toe (Multiplication)


Teen Activities for the DLC in 2016-2017


Unschoolers Roundtable

Dorset Buttons



Art Project



Session 3


1-2pm

My Kid is Smarter than Me!: How to Homeschool the Gifted Child


Stress and Learning



Lending Library Volunteer Training

(DLC library)



A Day in the Life of a Christian Homeschooling Mom


Old Fashioned Sewing Machines



Ninjas in Nature



Session 4


2-3pm

Online Learning and the Homeschooled Child



Genuine Children Play: A Video Report from Evpatorija, Crimea



How to Start a Homeschooling Co-op



Eclectic Homescholing Roundtable




Old Fashioned Sewing Machines

Make a Portable Sun Dial




Special Events

Closing Keynote 
Parenting the Puggle: The Platypus Approach to Parenting Quirky Kids by Mika Gustavson
Room D  3:00-4:00pm
If you brought home a kitten or a puppy from a shelter, you would probably have some basic ideas about how to care for it -- and if you didn’t , you would go to your friends who have cats or dogs, or go read a book about them. This is also how a lot of us have gone about raising our children -- but not all of us have a cat, or a dog. We might have a rabbit, or a monkey, or even a puggle (baby platypus) -- and you can’t raise a puggle with a puppy manual. Realizing you have a puggle changes your expectations and behaviors, and especially your relationships with your child, the world and yourself. This lecture will focus on the experience of being a parent to a puggle, and how embracing that difference in your child can be the key to happier, more successful parenting.

Mika Gustavson, MA, MFT is a counselor who specializes in helping the gifted to thrive. She is the director of Gifted Matters, where she supports families considering paths-less-taken in learning, nurturing and parenting. She maintains a private practice for parents of QUASIE (QUirky, Anxious, Sensitive, Intense, Excitable) children, as well as working directly with adolescents and young adults, and trains other professionals on issues touching on giftedness, homeschooling and parenting. Ms. Gustavson is also an organizer of the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum’s Professionals Division. She has published many articles in print and online venues, and is the co-author, with Corin Barsily Goodwin, of two books: Making the Choice: When Typical School Doesn’t Fit Your Atypical Child, and Writing Your Own Script: A Parent’s Role in the Gifted Child’s Social Development. She works, lives and homeschools in Silicon Valley, with her husband, son, an ever-changing menagerie and too many crochet projects.


Commercial Exhibits 
Breezeway outside the DLC    11:00am-2:00pm
Learn more about the services and products available to homeschooler in Santa Cruz County.

Bounce House Slide
Courtyard 3:00-4:30pm
Fun for kids of all ages.


Session 1-- 10:00-11:00am

Room A
Wes will present and support his view that our society’s idea of schooling, increasingly one-size-fits-all, does not serve young people well. Meaningful learning is different for each person, arising from an individualistic need to nurture one’s own strengths, talents, interests, and goals. Wes will relate a number of stories of people he has worked with, illustrating a wide variety of productive and fulfilling life paths.


Room B
All too often writing overwhelms kids. Too soon we combine the generative authorship of writing (finding and crafting WHAT to say) with the transcription skills of a secretary (handwriting and spelling) and young writers get cognitively overloaded and blow a gasket. I will show you a process for helping kids practice handwriting, grammar, spelling, and other transcription skills APART from their work as writers. We will practice using an enciphered code or phonetic nonsense words, so that we need to pay the kind of attention that kids do to the spelling. We already know how to form letters, we know lots of grammar and punctuation, and we have handwriting in place. To at least understand the struggles kids have with handwriting, we will all use our non-dominant hands as well. The Copywork, Dictation, Reverse Dictation process is my version of this from Julie Bogart's "The Writer's Jungle" (Julie is the founder of Brave Writer, bravewriter.com).


Setting the Stage for Learning by Janelle Holbrook
Room C
This session will be a round table discussion on structuring time, space and materials for homeschooling. Come with ideas to share and questions to ask others.  It's an area I personally struggle with, so I'm looking for some new ideas. 


Dads Roundtable by Mike Matessa
Room D
Join other dads for a roundtable discussion of a father's perspective on homeschool.


DLC Classroom
Play Magic the Gathering card game! Both experienced players and beginners welcome. Ages 8 - teen


Playdough Time for Kids by Bonnie McKinney
Courtyard
Enjoy creating whatever you want with Play-Doh.


Session 2-- 11:00am-12:00pm

Room A
Meet young adults and adults who were homeschooled and find out more about their experiences in high school, college, and beyond.


Room B
This session will introduce parents (and kids, if they want to come learn it, too!) to my favorite way to practice multiplication facts. It's fun and quick to play, uses the same game to learn the multiplication facts for each number, and has loads of extensions.

The 9-Lines is intended mostly to develop automaticity with the multiplication and division facts, which is for older students (maybe third grade and up). In addition to multiplication, this game can help develop early symbol imaging for the addition facts (kindergarten and first grade). The 9-Lines structure has some conceptual gems (it works well with division, fractions, and factors, among other things), and the game can be simplified or complicated to match the needs of the kids. We will learn it, and play together.

The game develops symbol imaging—a strong visual-perceptual, developmental ability to mentally hold, perceive, store and retrieve sequences of numerical symbols. It has both a visual/pattern component and a story/language approach, so it works well for different learners. It’s based on the work of David Berg of Making Math Real.

Room C
This session is designed for teens and adults to discuss the activities they would like the DLC to offer for the 2016 - 2017 school year. The session will begin with an ice breaker and than move into roundtable discussion culminating into a list of activities designed for teenagers who would like to participate in group activities for the 2016 - 2017 calendar year. 

Room D
Join other unschoolers for a roundtable discussion on the unschooling philosophy.  Those interested in unschooling are also welcome.

Dorset Buttons by Julie Stubblebine
DLC Classroom
Learn to make a button using a plastic ring, yarn, and a tapestry needle. This is a button style that was popular during the Regency Era in England and they are fun to make!


Art Project by Katie Matessa
Courtyard
Join Katie for a great decoupage activity for all ages.


Session 3-- 1:00-2:00pm

Room A
As homeschool parents, we may feel comfortable teaching the basics, but what do we do when our eight-year-old wants to discuss quantum mechanics or our tween is intellectually ready for college material, but has the emotional development of a six-year-old? Together we will discuss strategies for meeting the intellectual and emotional needs of our smart, quirky kids, as well as what we can learn along the way.


Stress and Learning by Suki Wessling
Room B
Recent brain research has revealed surprising information about stress. The old idea that learning is and should be stressful is wrong. But so is the more recent idea that children should never experience stress. In this workshop, we will explore what happens in the brain when our children experience stress, the difference between “good” stress and “bad” stress, and how we can nurture a homeschool environment that encourages the right kind.

DLC Lending Library
Learn how to run the Discovery Learning Center lending library and find out what other jobs we need from volunteers.


Room D
For those who are curious about the local Christian homeschool community, who have always wanted a peek into our lives and what makes our way of living & homeschooling "Christian." This will be an informal panel of Christian homeschool moms who will share bits of their lives. We're going to spend part of the session on how our life values affect our weekly homeschool planning, curriculum choices, daily routines, etc,--the day in and day out stuff. But a good chunk of the session will be on the psychology of being a Christian homeschool mom--and how it positively and negatively affects how we learn with our kids, interact with others in our community, and view ourselves. We'll end with questions and discussion, and hopefully find lots of connections between the Christian and non-religious homeschool communities--and celebrate all the ways we can encourage one another.  Jesus and God will definitely be mentioned, but there will be careful guard around respecting other religions, world views, and opinions, and there will be no proselytizing.  This session is mostly for adults, but families are perfectly welcome. 


DLC Classroom
Hands-on workshop for the whole family with hand crank and treadle sewing machines. Make your own bag, pillow, or whatever you can imagine.


Ninjas in Nature by Ken Clarkson
Courtyard
We will lead an interactive movement meets nature skills workshop.

Session 4-- 2:00-3:00pm

Room A
Whenever you ask for suggestions about ways to educate your child, someone will no doubt recommend that you look into an online class or curriculum. Some people make it sound like online learning is the answer to all of our education system’s woes. However, not all online learning is created equal, and not all students have the background or temperament to benefit from it. In this workshop, I will show examples of different types of online learning, from one-off web-based games, to self-paced curriculum and teacher-led synchronous classes. Drawing from my experience home educating my children as well as my experience teaching homeschoolers both in real life and online, I will help parents gain insight into the types of online learning that may benefit their families.

Room B
We are going to watch a video report from 2012 trip to a town of Evpatorija, located on Black Sea. In many places children are happily and lively playing on themselves with no need for parent supervision. Yet same children and parents behave very differently on a few recently built "modern" playgrounds. Come to see what genuine children play is and to ponder how we can have it here.

How to Start a Homeschool Co-op by Bonnie McKinney and Stephie Tucker
Room C
Based on our experience starting the Early Childhood Co-op Group at the DLC, Bonnie and Stephie will be sharing their experience on how we started a homeschooling co-op. We will provide what we did as well as share the ups and downs of the co-op.


Room D
Eclectic homeschoolers draw from many philosophies to create a custom homeschooling situation for their families.  Join us for a roundtable discussion on this style of homeschooling.

DLC Classroom
Hands-on workshop for the whole family with hand crank and treadle sewing machines. Make your own bag, pillow, or whatever you can imagine. 

Make a Portable Sun Dial by Heddi Craft
Courtyard
A sun dial you can carry in your pocket?  Join us in making a working portable sundial and learn how to use it.  There will be materials for thirty, so siblings may be asked to share depending on the number participating.

Closing Keynote-- 3:00-4:00pm

Parenting the Puggle: The Platypus Approach to Parenting Quirky Kids by Mika Gustavson
Room D

If you brought home a kitten or a puppy from a shelter, you would probably have some basic ideas about how to care for it -- and if you didn’t , you would go to your friends who have cats or dogs, or go read a book about them. This is also how a lot of us have gone about raising our children -- but not all of us have a cat, or a dog. We might have a rabbit, or a monkey, or even a puggle (baby platypus) -- and you can’t raise a puggle with a puppy manual. Realizing you have a puggle changes your expectations and behaviors, and especially your relationships with your child, the world and yourself. This lecture will focus on the experience of being a parent to a puggle, and how embracing that difference in your child can be the key to happier, more successful parenting.

Mika Gustavson, MA, MFT is a counselor who specializes in helping the gifted to thrive. She is the director of Gifted Matters, where she supports families considering paths-less-taken in learning, nurturing and parenting. She maintains a private practice for parents of QUASIE (QUirky, Anxious, Sensitive, Intense, Excitable) children, as well as working directly with adolescents and young adults, and trains other professionals on issues touching on giftedness, homeschooling and parenting. Ms. Gustavson is also an organizer of the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum’s Professionals Division. She has published many articles in print and online venues, and is the co-author, with Corin Barsily Goodwin, of two books: Making the Choice: When Typical School Doesn’t Fit Your Atypical Child, and Writing Your Own Script: A Parent’s Role in the Gifted Child’s Social Development. She works, lives and homeschools in Silicon Valley, with her husband, son, an ever-changing menagerie and too many crochet projects.





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