1 downloadable ZIP file that contains all the sessions in MP3 format (Caution: this is a LARGE download — 1.5GB)
The Divine Blueprint for Building a Family of Faith – In Deuteronomy 6, God’s simple and effective plan for the family begins with parents loving God with everything in them and having His word on their hearts. When parents have established their own relationship with God and His word, they are equipped to teach their children to love God and His word.
Heidi St. John
The Busy Homeschool Mom’s Guide to Daylight: How to Fit Your Size 16 Day Into a Size 10 – Tick Tock. Have you ever experienced a series of days, weeks or even months when you felt like you just could NOT get on top of all that you had to do? Have you just decided that it’s either school or dinner? Or maybe you just gave up school and now everyone has matching socks again! Most moms struggle with finding a balance when it comes to homeschooling and staying on top of the rest of your day. Homeschool mom, if you’re struggling with trying to do it all, you will enjoy hearing some of Heidi’s favourite tips for managing homeschooling and homemaking…and still finding time to fit in “other things” (like alone time with your husband!). This is an opportunity to GET SET FREE from the expectations of others, laugh out loud, learn how two words: BE INTENTIONAL can make a huge difference in your ability to manage your home and your homeschool well. Heidi really loves to use acrostics and this is one of her favorites! Bring a friend and leave your preconceived ideas at the door because real moms sometimes serve Cheerios for dinner!
Making the Grade: A Canadian Update on Homeschool Regulations – Students aren’t the only ones being graded on their work. In this session we’ll examine how the provinces and territories are doing in their efforts to regulate home education. Learn more about what’s happening across the country that affects the freedom and flexibility of homeschooling. Compare and discuss some of the past and current challenges with school authorities. Students and parents will discover the government’s role in home education and determine if they are passing or failing our families.
Henry de Roos
Leader of the Pack – Who is charting the future for your family? Studies show that kids want to look up to their dad, so dads….regardless of whether you see yourself as a leader or not, why not learn from my mistakes and consider a handful of suggestions that will bear tons of positive fruit in your relationship with your kids and eventually your adult children! Drawing on my experience as a high school teacher, missionary for 21 years and in the midst of raising eight kids, I’ve seen many families make wise choices leading their families and also many fall into unnecessary pitfalls that hurt their families and the future of their children. We’ve implemented some of the wisdom of experienced Christian families that has helped me in leading my family and it has borne awesome fruit already. Regardless of whether you see yourself as a leader or not, you absolutely can lead your family successfully.
Homeschooling the High School Years – Homeschooling through the high school years fills many with anxiety and trepidation. Can my students go to college or university? How do I know what to teach? Come and be encouraged as Louise shares information on credits, transcripts, admissions and more. Homeschooling through the teen years can be a special time for growth and training in our teens’ lives. Why not see how this could work for your family?
Education by Inspiration: Education is an Atmosphere (Charlotte Mason) – Charlotte Mason said that education is more than just the acquisition of a body of knowledge. To truly educate our children we need to invest in the environment they live and learn in. In this seminar we will look at how we impart ideas and inspire the next generation to embrace our values and worldviews, not through carefully selected curricula but through relationships, enthusiasms, encouragement and in the realities of home, community and outdoor life. Whether you are a newby to or a veteran of Miss Mason’s philosophy and methods, come to any one or all three seminars in this series as we look to deepen our appreciation for her gentle art of education.
Choosing and Using Good Books – How do you feel when we say – “BOOKS!!”; Delighted? Depressed? Depends? Reading is a gift from cradle to adulthood. Join Susan as she explores ideas to assist our trips to the library and our book purchases. What criteria should be considered for choosing books that are consistent with our family’s values and worldview? How can we help our children evaluate a book for themselves? This session will encourage you if your homeschool is a bit reluctant to reading or is new to enjoying literature, and will hone your passion if your homeschool already delights in using good books.
Homeschooling your Child with Special Needs – Home education takes time and energy. Home educating a child with special needs takes more! Linda has wrestled with many of the same frustrations and concerns as most other moms – What curriculum is best for my child? Can I really teach my child as well as the Special Education “experts” in school? How do I give the siblings the attention they need? Join Linda in this interactive session as she opens the floor for your questions, and also shares research, resources, ideas, experience and hope.
Heidi St. John NEW HOMESCHOOLERS
The First Three Years: A Workshop for Homeschool Rookies – If homeschooling up til now feels more like drudgery than delight, or if the thought of homeschooling makes your knees shake and your palms sweat, this is the workshop for you! Perhaps you’ve been hearing from “experts” that view homeschooling as just another form of education, like any other. Public schools think that way, but homeschooling is nothing like the school system. It’s just the opposite. Learning at home is an adventure, a journey, a new lifestyle. Join veteran homeschool mom of seven (including one homeschool graduate!) Heidi St. John as she talks about the three things you’ve got to know as a new homeschooler that will set you on a track for success and enjoyment with your children. Come and bring a friend for a dose of information and encouragement. You can do it!
Math You Understand – Math is so much more than memorizing rules and facts. With a unique and humorous approach, Steve demonstrates how to use hands-on manipulatives to illustrate important math concepts such as place value, double digit multiplication, fractions, algebra, exponents, squares, square roots, and factoring trinomials.
Biblical Principles of Communication for the Family – Loving God and each other are relationships. Relationships are built on edifying communication. No one can build up, or tear down, more than those that we love the most. In this workshop we will examine how to hear and understand each other in a safe place.
Understanding the Education Act and Child & Family Services Act – What happens when two provincial regulatory agencies connect in the name of education? Join HSLDA’s legal counsel to get a better understanding of the home education policy of Ontario (PPM-131) and the educational mandate of the Children’s Aid Society (CAS). Gain greater knowledge of how schools and CAS cross paths and what that means for your family. In this session you will also learn what to consider if you are confronted by the school board or CAS.
Daniel Ventura YOUTH
1 Timothy: Being an Example in Godliness – As young people we struggle with similar things that Pastor Timothy struggled with. We struggle with shyness, physical limitations, and living out our Christian life before the watching world. In this talk we want to see ourselves in Timothy’s struggles as young believers, but we also want to see how God has provided his grace for us in Jesus Christ, strengthen us so that we might be witnesses before the world of what it means to live for God.
Homeschooling, The Early Years – With the launching of the full day Kindergarten programs in Ontario, homeschool parents are feeling more and more pressure from family and community to begin home education with their 4 and 5 year olds. These are the years that children are usually eager and excited to learn about the world around them. How do we balance the ‘school work’ with ‘play based learning’? And, how can we identify learning weaknesses during these critical years? As an Early Childhood Educator, a homeschool mother and now an NILD Educational Therapist, Diane will help you think through these important concepts.
Transforming Hearts and Minds: Hospitality in your Homeschools – Linda is no Martha Stewart. Nor is she an extrovert or a natural hostess! And yet, by offering a simple invitation and welcome into her home, she has seen lives impacted – including those of her children. If you want your kids to have a heart of compassion for others, Biblical hospitality is key. Join Linda as she covers practical ideas to overcome obstacles to hospitality such as being an introvert, having a small home; being too busy; too tired, or fear of being criticized. Linda will share from years of imperfect practice, how opening our doors can also open the hearts and minds of our kids, whether they are two or twenty-two.
Dual Income Families Discussion Group – When a family decides to homeschool and both parents are working, either part-time or full-time, there are unique challenges! Come and connect with other families, share the struggles and opportunities, and know you’re not “the only one!” Christine Pyle, OCHEC Area Rep, will be there to hear how OCHEC can better serve dual-income homeschooling families.
Reading Difficulties—Dyslexia, Eye Tracking and Letter Recognition – Dyslexia isn’t just a buzzword, but it also doesn’t have to be a life sentence. Children who struggle with reading may need different kinds of support. In this session, we will look at the varied root causes and symptoms of reading troubles, as well as tips to help struggling readers. Matthew Turton, an Educational Therapist with over 20,000 hours of experience working with children with learning disabilities at Breakthroughs in Learning, brings both his experience and passion for helping children enjoy reading. This session will give you insights and practical tips to apply in the classroom. Grades K – 6.
George Brown Reflects on Canada’s 150th
Father of Confederation George Brown, the “Old Covenanter” as Sir John A. called him, offers some pithy reflections on the original formation of Canada and what it has morphed into since then. Some of his thoughts are of the “sober second” variety as befits a man who sat in the Senate in the 1870s.
Heidi St. John
R.E.A.L L.I.F.E Homeschooling – Let’s face it. Homeschooling is challenging. Sometimes it can feel like a major accomplishment just to take a shower and get the breakfast dishes cleaned up before dinner! Most homeschool moms feel the pressure of providing their children with a solid academic foundation ~ but there’s so much more to homeschooling than academics, isn’t there? The truth is that the greatest accomplishment of your homeschooling is to nurture your children in the ways of the One who made them.
From Crisis to Christ – With all of the best intentions, Steve set out to be the best Dad he could be for his four sons who are now adults. This adventure in parenting is a lifelong process and he is still learning how to have his heart restored to his children. As a dad he made many mistakes and had many of his own blind spots revealed. Thankfully God is a Redeemer and does work all things together for good.
Heidi St. John
The Busy Homeschool Mom’s Guide to Romance – In this workshop, you’ll learn several key ingredients to balancing your love life with language lessons ~ and how you can become the most romantic homeschool mom on the block! Come hear a story of personal experience that will challenge the way you view your marriage and inspire you to seek God’s heart as you model a strong healthy marriage for your children. This is Heidi’s favorite topic, so bring a notepad and fasten your seatbelts! It’s time to put the “real OO” back in your Homeschool!
Steve Demme DADS
Five Strategies to Build Up and Encourage our Wives – Steve relates insights he has gleaned from Scripture on how God has designed our wives and ways that we can lay down our lives and apply Biblical principles to build them up and encourage them in the Lord. When we lose our life we find it.
Vince Marquis YOUTH
Homeschooling in the 1860s – Imagine living in the 1860s. What would your home have been like? What would school have been like? What if you didn’t go to school? Did parents homeschool their kids in the 1860s? How different would that have been from how your parents homeschool you? Or would it really have been that different? Just what was it like to be a youth in the time of Confederation? If questions like these fascinate you, come chat with other curious people about how things were for our ancestors of five generations ago.
Jonathan Gilman YOUTH
The Entrepreneurial Workshop for Entrepreneurial Teens (or teens who just want to live awesomely) -When freelancing, setting up a small company, or building a multi-national conglomerate, you have to start somewhere. Using Jonathan’s life and business as examples of how homeschoolers can form and grow their businesses, this workshop will discuss theoretical ways and practical steps to make your thoughts and dreams into successful reality, and hopefully have a little fun and make some homeschooler jokes along the way.
A Word Fitly Spoken – Homeschooling provides such an amazing opportunity to speak truth into the lives of our children. Come and learn how to use your words to lift up your children as they journey through life. Learn tips on helping your children when they hurt and dreaming dreams with them when they are thinking big thoughts.
Single Parent Discussion Group
Being a single parent brings unique challenges and adding homeschooling can make life seem overwhelming at times. Come connect with others walking a similar path. Discuss what has worked for others, how to homeschool while supporting a family, and your other challenges, joys and needs. Nathan McLaren, OCHEC Board Member, will be there to understand how OCHEC can better serve single parents as they homeschool their children.
How Hard Can It Be? A Glimpse into Learning Disabilities – This fun, experiential and interactive workshop will provide valuable insight into your child’s struggles by allowing you to step into their shoes, experiencing what it is like to have a learning disability. Matthew Turton, Vice-President at Breakthroughs in Learning, and International Best Selling author, will share about his life as a child struggling with several learning disabilities.
Heidi St. John
The Distracted Mom (iMom) – Do you have a rooster in your house? You might—if you find that you’re easily side-tracked by things like social media, off-balance, behind and often overwhelmed by all you have to do. Join Heidi for an honest, funny hour of learning how to root out your roosters and stay on track. Perfect for the busy mom who needs a new strategy to conquer all she has to do. You’ll leave with five strategies for staying focused and encouragement for your journey. Don’t miss it!
The Influence of Dads – A plethora of studies have demonstrated the profound impact of fathers on their children. In this session we will explore the influence of Dads in Scripture and how we can learn from what they did well and where they dropped the ball. God designed men to serve and lay their lives down for their wife and children.
Jonathon Van Maren YOUTH
How to Talk About Assisted Suicide – With the legalization of euthanasia in Canada, it is important that Christians are able to articulate their objections to assisted suicide in a winsome and persuasive matter. This presentation explains how we got to this point, and how we can defend the Christian position to our friends and neighbours.
Laying Down the Rails: Education is a Discipline (Charlotte Mason) – Habit building can be likened to putting a train on rails: there is much effort in the laying of the rails, but once they are seated, it is hard to derail the train. We all, as parents and educators, want to instill in our children good habits and strong character. In this seminar, we will look at Charlotte Mason’s thoughts on habit building and instilling strong character in our children. Then we will explore practical ways to implement strategies for habit building in your homeschool including habit building techniques, chore assignments, character building and life skills training. Whether you are a newby to or a veteran of Miss Mason’s philosophy and methods, come to any one or all three seminars in this series as we look to deepen our appreciation for her gentle art of education.
Bonnie Getty and Laurie Pruim
Homeschooling High School and Beyond – Homeschooling through high school is a daunting proposition for many families. How do we know if we’ve covered the right things? Will the subjects we’ve studied be recognized by postsecondary institutions so our child can get the further education and vocation they desire? All of these are valid questions, but they should not paralyze the homeschool parent or scare the family away from trying. Bonnie Getty and Laurie Pruim have both successfully graduated high school students from home and are going to share their varied experiences of what they did and how well it worked. Come ready with questions and come ready to be encouraged. You can do this!
Tiffany Cosco Leaders’ Workshop
Connecting through Modern Media/Communications for Leaders – Your ability to reach and support the home education community as leaders holds more possibilities than ever before. In this session, you will hear how easy and relevant it can be to connect and support homes educators through social media/communication networks such as Facebook! How we connect and communicate has changed tremendously in the past twenty years or so, and most of these modern forms of electronic communication return us to our written roots. Instead, however, of the minutes, hours, days or weeks the written form once took, everything is instant, and available almost anywhere to anyone! This new way of communication and online connections can naturally encourage real life relationships to form and grow. Town-hall Style Q & A if time permits.
Mary Lou Maclean
ADHD: Disease, Normal Childhood or Something Else? – Statistics today indicate that 5-15% of school-aged children are affected by ADHD. But what truly is ADHD and are there other conditions that mimic the ADHD symptoms or can lead to it? This workshop will educate you on how to identify whether or not your child has ADHD, as well as looking for therapeutic solutions to symptoms that may impede your child’s academic performance or social wellbeing.
Sam Oosterhoff YOUTH
Virtue Ethics and Meaningful Leadership for the 21st Century – In our world of postmodern relativism, the search for objective truth can be particularly difficult. It can be even more challenging to be a young person who holds to objective truth entering the workforce, academia, or the public square. This workshop will look at what leadership qualities are needed to be an effective actor in all spheres of society, and how these qualities can be thought of within the framework of truth-based virtue ethics. It will also consider the role of youth in approaching the issues of the day, and how youth can play an integral role in shaping culture and public policy. Sam Oosterhoff was elected as the Member of Provincial Parliament for Niagara West – Glanbrook in November of 2016, and is the youngest Canadian ever elected to provincial or federal legislature. He was home educated.
Resistance in your Homeschool Classroom – We’ve all experienced resistance in our homeschool environment, but it doesn’t have to be that way. In this Biblically based session, Diana will explore reasons for student frustration, distress and disengagement and you will learn some surprisingly easy solutions to make your home the relaxed learning environment you wish it to be.
Homeschooling in Freedom – Many things can bog us down as we pursue the noble task of homeschooling our children. In this workshop, Robin will share how homeschooling in freedom in the following areas will release you from unnecessary burdens to teach your children with joy: Free from the pressure of parental disapproval: how to deal respectfully with parents who aren’t happy with your educational choice. Free from financial stress as a one income family: frugal and joyful living and homeschooling from a Biblical view with practical tips. Free to be flexible: yes to plans and schedules, but welcoming life learning as educational when we are interrupted by life. Free to celebrate and pass on our values to our children.
Real Brain Food: Education is a Life (Charlotte Mason) – The meat and potatoes of an education are the ideas that we ingest. While Charlotte Mason considered academics to be only one third of the equation in a full education she also advocated for great breadth and quality in education. In this seminar, we will look at feeding our kids “living books” and at nourishing them on an experiential education. As a sample menu for this healthy cornucopia of brain food we will look at practical ideas for teaching most academic subjects as well as scheduling ideas. We will also talk about the best places to dig up great books and about how to choose the right books for your learning time.
Panel of Homeschooling Moms with Decades of Experience NEW HOMESCHOOLERS
“My Best Advice!” – Starting out homeschooling (or even just thinking about it!) can be daunting and filled with all sorts of questions – academic, social, inter-personal, logistical, etc! Take a deep breath and hear what these moms wish they could’ve told themselves 20 years ago, the lessons they’ve taken from the journey, and their practical advice for where you are now. A portion of this session will be for Q&A.
You Don’t Need to be a Rocket Scientist to Homeschool One – Many home educators feel intimidated when it comes to teaching science. This need not be. This talk is designed to help you incorporate science into your children’s education in a way that will benefit them regardless of how scholastic your family is. Practical suggestions will be given for teaching younger children, as well as thoughts on preparing your serious student for higher education in the sciences without having to send them off to high school. Regardless of your stage of homeschooling, number of children, educational philosophy, teaching style, budget and affection for science, there will be something here for you!
Homeschooling Special Needs Students – Discover the benefits of homeschooling exceptional students with homeschool veteran Karen Uschold. Learn how to build a firm foundation based on your child’s special needs. Karen’s personal and professional experience will help parents understand the varying degrees of exceptionality. Set the right pace for your family by embracing the incredible opportunity to educate your child regardless of the diagnosis.
Heidi St. John
Better for Best: Keeping Christ at the Center of Your Homeschool – Do you struggle to keep your heart tuned into God’s voice through all the other “noise” of this life? In this Pinterest-Perfect world where everyone Pins their Perfect Life, it’s all too easy to hold the Lord at arms length until we do the “important” things. Learn the secret of developing an intimate spiritual life and why it makes all the difference in your family and marriage.