Homeschooling Guest Commentators
Judy Aron is a long time Homeschooling Activist. She has been heavily involved in protecting the rights of parents, particularly homeschoolers. She graduated from Rondout Valley High School and went on to attend SUNY New Paltz, where she earned a BA in Economics in 1978 graduating magna cum laude with a dual minor in Business Administration and Computer Science. After graduation she married, and worked for the Travelers Insurance Company as a systems manager in data processing, and after having her second child hung up the corporate suit and stayed home to be a parent full time.
Judy is currently Research Director for National Home Education Legal Defense. She held the position of Vice President of CT Homeschool Network. She is also involved in civic organizations in her home town as well as working to earn her Distinguished Toastmaster designation with Toastmasters International.
Judy is wife to Michael Aron, and mom to 3 wonderful kids who were homeschooled and have now gone on to pursue additional studies while living their lives. David is a graduate of Boston University, Jeff is a graduate of Wentworth Institute of Technology, and Rachel is pursuing her college studies at the University of New Haven. Her hobbies include soap making, gardening, cooking, quilting, reading, stained glasswork and some scrap booking. She also loves politics – but sometimes she hates it, too. Judy was a candidate for the CT State legislature in 2006 and is currently still involved in politics and in the Liberty movement. Judy has written numerous articles about homeschooling teens and preparing for college as part of “College Corner” in the CT Homeschool Network monthly newsletter, and she has also written extensively for NHELD. Some of her articles have appeared in Home Education Magazine, Journal of College Admissions, RadioFree West Hartford, online blogs and websites, as well as various newspapers. She has been a guest on several radio and cable TV shows speaking about homeschooling, parental rights, mental health testing and a host of other issues. Judy has her own Cable TV program on West Hartford Cable TV, entitled “What You Should Know” and also authors the weblog, “Consent Of The Governed.”
Becky Rupp has a Ph.D. in cell biology and biochemistry. She has published over 200 articles in national magazines on a wide range of topics, and nearly two dozen books, both fiction and non-fiction, for children and adults.
Titles for homeschoolers include The Complete Home Learning Sourcebook (Three Rivers Press, 1999) and Home Learning Year by Year: How to Design a Homeschooling Curriculum from Preschool through High School (Three Rivers Press, 2000). Among her children’s books are the award-winning Dragon of Lonely Island (Candlewick, 1998), The Waterstone (2002), Return of the Dragon (2005), Journey to the Blue Moon (2006), Sarah Simpson’s Rules for Living (2008), and – coming up this year – Octavia Boone’s Big Questions About Life, the Universe, and Everything.
She is the Resource Editor for Home Education Magazine, a contributing editor for GreenPrints, and an educational consultant to the Vermont Center for the Book, for whom she organizes library-based children’s science programs.
She and her husband homeschooled their three sons, all of whom still love them. And they all turned out just fine.
Resource questions? E-mail Becky at email@example.com.
Parent at the Helm
MARI BETH BUCKROTH
Military wife of 20 years, 4-year homeschooling parent of one wonderful daughter currently in the 5th grade.
I worked for years in the criminal justice profession and have a B.A. in Criminal Justice, have a Master’s in Public Administration and also worked in the non-profit sector.
Since becoming a parent, I’ve started freelance writing, and have my own blog, “The Inappropriate Homeschooler.”
The last four years have been dedicated to making homeschooling a successful endeavor for my daughter and our family. We have had more misses than hits, truth be told, and we are now somewhere between being ‘unschoolers’ and ‘relaxed homeschoolers. We are very eclectic, and secular, in our homeschooling approach and I am not dedicated to one particular curriculum. We use whatever works! The Learn at Home series has been our ‘spine’ since almost the beginning and Teaching Textbooks is our current choice for Math. Other than that, I use whatever resources seem awesome or likely to work and we have begun Notebooking as a part of our schooling.
I live in rural Wisconsin on a weedy, well-loved hobby farm with my partner Jordan and our four young children. We began homeschooling in Spring 2010. We do not subscribe to one specific method of homeschooling, but see value in a variety of approaches. The children are taught language arts and math during structured table top activities. We teach science through daily life experiences on our hobby farm. We read to each other many hours every day. The rest of our homeschool life is spent engaging in youth sports and participating in community events. We believe consistent levels of strenuous physical activity are critical for everyone’s emotional and physical well being.
Jen lives in California with her husband and their son. As the leader of a local inclusive homeschool group for the past five years, she has had the opportunity to share ideas and support with a wonderful mix of people. She has been reviewing products and curricula for several years and she greatly enjoys finding and learning about the great variety of books, programs, and resources that are available to homeschoolers. Jen is also active in one of California’s largest statewide homeschool organizations, for which she volunteers as the head of the legislation committee. She is an enthusiastic supporter and devoted advocate for the homeschooling community.
Jen and her husband have homeschooled their son from the start using a variety of methods and approaches. She describes their current homeschooling philosophy as part eclectic and part unit study, with a dash of unschooling thrown into the mix. She notes that their philosophy is always a work in progress – which she believes is part of what makes their homeschooling journey so much fun.
Jen has worked as an editor, researcher, and freelance writer, but being a mom is her most cherished pursuit. Her family enjoys studying the stars through her son’s telescope, playing board games, watching documentaries, and exploring new places. In addition to spending time with her family and pets, Jen enjoys writing, reading, genealogy, and baking.