Special Needs Education at Home

When your family rom turns into a hospital roomMy beautiful wife has shared some awesome tips for parents with a special needs child that is also homeschooled. Check out the latest podcast on the Home School Support Network to learn how we deal with tough times with a special needs child in our home.

Pinewood Derby Cars 2012

Boys Being BoysPinewood Derby Cars

Caden and JJ showing off their first Pinewood Derby Cars

This is Caden’s first year in Cub Scouts. He and his brothers recently attended an event at the local Lowe’s store in Goose Creek, SC called Pinewood Derby® Days. This is sponsored by Lowe’s and Dremel® tools to help boys create their derby cars while learning about the safe use of tools.


Reason for the Season

Sherry and I recorded a new episode of the HSSN Podcast this week. Sherry shared some great resources to help teach your kids the true meaning of Christmas. These resources are valuable regardless of whether you are a parent of a kid in public, private or home school. Check out the post and podcast over at the Home School Support Network.

Parenting Matters in Education

An article in the NY Times this weekend emphasized the need for parentally involvement. While the studies that the article referenced focused on academics the last few words of the article I can agree with:

“…let’s stop putting the whole burden on teachers. We also need better parents. Better parents can make every teacher more effective.” Source

What I could not find in these study results was how effective parental involvement in teaching character development might help school performance. Teaching children manners, self-control, and respect for authority can go a long way in equipping a teacher for success.

I have known for a long time that parent involvement was the best solution to improving the public school system in this country. My wife taught 3rd grade in the public school system for a few years after graduating from college. My wife learned quickly that kids were not coming to school adequately prepared. By prepared I mean the basics. Kids had not been taught to sit quietly and respect authority. The kids had little self control and some would demand attention constantly as if they were the only child in the room that mattered.

What was the root of this? Many kids have missed out on some very basic parental involvement. In many families the definition of parental involvement has digressed to a point where it is measured by frequency of attendance at plays, music recitals, soccer games, cub scout meetings or baseball games. Many parents consider themselves involved if they check their kids’ homework, volunteer in the child’s class, and attend PTA meetings. A study referenced by the NY Times article was performed by The Center For Public Education. The limited results that they reported confirm what parents consider to be healthy participation by their own actions:

“National survey data from the National Center for Education Statistics shows that attending school meetings or events is the leading form of parent participation in schools, followed by school fundraising activities.” Source

And then some kids don’t even get this much involvement from their parents. Some are bounced from grandparents to friends homes for one reason or another. However the data by the Center for Public Education showed little difference in parental involvement across racial and economic lines.

“…while 82 percent of parents of white students said an adult checked their child’s homework, the rates were higher among parents of African American and Hispanic students, which reported rates of 94% and 91%, respectively. Other studies have shown that lower-income and minority parents often have the same level of involvement in education as others — even though it may not necessarily be reflected at PTA meetings or school fundraisers.”

All that said I would argue that these studies miss the mark from the start. The type of parental involvement needed most is the kind that teaches character and strong values. However this type of parental involvement is mostly outsourced to peers via day cares beginning as early as six weeks old in many families and then other families do so with pre-school programs by age three years. The list of reasons why parents are forced down these paths or choose these methods is longer than we could possibly address on this blog. Are you one of these parents? How do you compensate?




Podcast Episode 13 – GKGW Fathers Mandate 2 – Regularly Demonstrate Love to your Wife

The Fathers Mandate Part 2 of 8
Based on Chapter 4 from Growing Kids God’s Way 

1.  A father must cultivate a sense of family identity. (Review)

– Be proud of your family – as Mr Ezzo said be the cheer leader (We are the Osbornes and we…) Rise above the level of mediocrity!

I added a couple of blog posts this week. One related to Cub Scout activities this past weekend. Our oldest two boys got to shoot BB Guns, Bow and Arrows, and Sling Shots.

Make sure your activities are in line with your family goals and values. Do you have them written down? Are your goals Simple, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, TRUTH based?
What education method makes your family unique: Public, private or home school?

2.  A father must regularly demonstrate love to his wife.

Mr. Ezzo says, “If you really love your children then give them the gift of confidence and security. Show them how much you love their mom.”

In Episode 4 I talked about the importance of Dating and Couch Time.

In Episode 7 I talked about the need for dads to take your wife out of her role as a mom and put her back in her role as a wife. To do this you need to elarn your wife’s love language. The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Gary Chapman 

In the coming weeks I will share ideas to help dads fulfill the remaining mandates
3.  A father must understand and respect his child’s private world.
12 minutes
4.  A father must give his children the freedom to fail.
5.  A father must be the encourager of the family.
6.  A father must guard his tongue and his tone and learn to measure his response against the excitement on their faces.
7.  A father must routinely embrace his children.
8.  A father must build the trusting relationship on God’s Word, not on human wisdom.

Tech Time

Microsoft Intelligence Report

The PDF report can be found in the download section ont he right side of the page.

An in-depth perspective on software vulnerabilities and exploits, malicious code threats, and potentially unwanted software in the first half of 2011.

45% – User Interaction Required
26% – Autorun of USB or network files

What you can do.

  1. Be smart.
  2. Implement strong passwords and Patch your systems. There are patches for your OS, Browsers (IE, FireFox, Safari, Chrome) Aplciaitons (Adobe flash, reader, etc), iTunes, Qiucktime, MS Office.


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Technology Safety is more about Behavior than the Technology!


BB Guns, Sling Shots, and a Red Mustang

Caden and Daddy on the Archery Range

Photo taken by Riley Osborne

The weekend was so much fun. I enjoyed it almost as much as the boys. Riley and Caden learned how to shoot good old fashion Daisy BB guns, bow and arrows, and sling shots (wrist rockets) loaded with dog food. Our local Boy Scout district group puts on a an event called the Cub Scout Tiger Safari each year in the fall. This event allows new Cub Scouts Caden to experience some really cool activities that they would otherwise have to wait until next summer when offered at the day and resident camps. Things like BB Gun and Archery can only be offered at district and regional level events for safety reasons.

The belt loops and pins that the kids earn are the big prize. Belt loops are awards for elective sports and academic activities that have specific criteria in order to earn. Since the BB guns are only offered a couple of times per year at district or regional events it is an extra special treat for a Cub Scout to earn the BB gun and Archery belt loops. Going into this weekend Riley had earned nearly a dozen belt loops already for chess, computers, foreign language, fishing, swimming, flag football, and more. He was allowed to attend this Tiger specific event as a participating sibling.

The Tiger Safari was held at Camp Moultrie just North of Moncks Corner, SC. This is a Boy Scouts of America camping area located on the shore of Lake Moultrie right next to the Navy recreation center called Short Stay. It is about a 45 minute drive from our house in Goose Creek, SC.

Josiah and Levi in the Toy Red MustangOnce we arrive back home we spent a good portion of the afternoon playing outside. Josiah took Levi for a ride int he little red convertible muscle car. The boys love to run this miniature version of a Ford Mustang around in circles in the cul de sacin front of our house. It was  an action packed day that left a smile on every child’s face.




Here are more pictures from our day:

Riley with the sling shot.

Sling Shot

Caden on the BB Gun Range.

Caden shooting a Daisy BB Gun at Cub Scout CampCaden getting ready to fire a wrist rocket.

Caden getting ready to fire a wrist rocket

Riley shooting a BB gun.

Riley with the Daisy BB Gun

Being a Home School Family

Using home school to educate our children is another thing that makes our family unique. Homeschoooling adds to our family identity. Certainly homeschooling is not for every family, but what ever your education method, that adds to your family identity. Dads, you should be very active and intentional in choosing how your children will be educated. Don’t take the public school education program blindly without understanding if it is the right choice for EACH of your children. One child may be better servered by a private school. Another child within the same family may be better served by public education or home school.

Sherry and I are passionate about home school education. We enjoy helping families through their review of education choices. Sherry is a former 3rd grade public school teacher and now she has several years of homeschool teaching under her belt. This is another subject that we approach carefully and prayerfully. We encourage you to do the same. To help you decide if homeschooling is right for your family we have a new resource. If you choose homeschooling we will lead you through the mounds of choices with curriculum, resources, books, co-ops, and more. Our new online support group web site launched this week is called the Home School Support Network. The site is a Blog and Podcast for now. Eventually we will be adding video and possibly even a member area. The first episode of the podcast was just released this week. We are waiting on the iTunes review process to complete, but in the meantime you can get the introductory podcast episode via the HSSN RSS feed.

Podcast Episode 4 – Filters, Porn, Pooh, Marriage and School Choice

This episode covers the following topics:

Intern FiltersInternet Filter Review web site

PornWorld Magazine Story with statistics on porn prevalence in pastors and Christians in general. XXXChurch, TopTeReviews – Internet Pornography Statistics

Winnie The Pooh Movie Review – Great for the whole family.

Marriage – Priority Relationship, dates, couch time – Babywise(aff link)

School Choice – Public, Private, or Home School? This subject was inspired by Andy and Cory over at Becoming a Better Dad podcast. If you are going to home school you absolutely must join the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA).

Podcast Improvements – Learning from Cliff Ravenscraft at Podcast Answer Man

Feedback: Email me – hank {@} daddylife {dot} net
Voice Mail: (864) 372-9833

DaddyLife.net Podcast

On Modesty

A while back Michael Hyatt posted some observations on the lack of modesty in the world today.  Mrs Ozz and I took Gary and Anne Marie Ezzo’s Reflections of Moral Innocence class a few years ago that helped us gain a perspective on how to lead our children down a pure path.  And yes we have all boys and they need to be taught about modesty too.  Now we teach the Reflections of Moral Innocence classes in our home as a follow on to Growing Kids God’s Way so we can help educate other parents on modesty and sex education.

What are the benefits of teaching parents about modesty and sex education?

  • No one can do the job better than properly trained parents, for they are the only ones who have the right to determine what value system is placed into the hearts of their children.
  • By training parents it puts the responsibility for this education back where it belongs.
  • It reduces moral intrusion into the family structure since the value system of the family is not violated by a secular interest.
  • It avoids forcing the institutional morality on family and child such as is represented in various public pro-homosexual curriculums.
  • It can be done under the best conditions since parents pick the time and place for its implementation, rather than resorting to a group classroom setting.
  • It is more cost effective. As pointed out by Josh McDowell in The Myth of Sex Education, the more money spent per capita on sex education of children the higher the percentage of sexual activity. Expensive public programs are not effective.