Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Courage has a crimson coat by Nancy Byrd Turner


Courage has a crimson coat
Trimmed with trappings bold,
Knowledge dons a dress of note,
Fame's is cloth of gold.
Far they ride and far they roam,
Much they do and dare.
Gray-gowned Patience sits at home,
And weaves the stuff they wear.
This treasure was found by Joshua and the scribbles were his too - love em both, and Josh too!

How do you cope with Homeschooling?

I am often asked this question and then people fob me off with, "Oh your just so patient!" - I am not. Or, "you were born to do it!" I was born with a sinful nature nature just like everyone else. Or " You are just superwoman, I couldn't do it!" How these flippant comments annoy me! Homeschooling is a choice that my hubby and I made but it is not always an easy choice. So how do I cope? And is it worth the effort and sacrifice?

I have always home schooled and have 8 kids. Many times it has felt overwhelming, but please know that the rewards far out weight those moments and I am so grateful to God that I kept persevering. Why? I now see grown children studying out of the home who are well balanced and capable.....and just charming- in fact everything I could want in a very best friend. They are compassionate and balanced and more mature quite honestly than some adults I know. They reach out to others in need and tell them about God, pray for then and nurture them. They are friends with their younger sibling, peers and old people, atheists, Mormons, Muslims and people from many cultures and countries. I love being with them because they are such nice people and not just because they are my kids.

So now when I look at my littlest (3yo) and think, "how will I manage- I am getting to be so 'old'." I just laugh at myself and say to myself, "Silly old goose- haven't you learnt yet that God will provide?" And indeed He will and He does. Home schooling is something we cannot do on our own strength, we need God to strengthen us! And in case you think you think I am one of those super Moms, I am not....Many times I would far rather just take 'time out' to sit and blog or write a story or sew or do a zillion things of my own, but I chose to do them only when I have time left over which isn't that often! Yes, I do get frustrated with this, especially when I am half way through an exciting project. But I know it is my primary calling to serve God through my children first and foremost, it is the way I am called to be my husband's help meet. It is a sacrifice that I sometimes resist, and I am still learning to follow Jesus - His way not mine.

One special 'time out' I cannot do without is 'time out' with God and to my shame so often it is crowded out with 'things to do' . And that is my weakness together with feeling sorry for myself when there is so much to be grateful for! May God bless you and your family as you serve Him through them, Joy

Matthew 25: 34 Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, 36 I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ 37 Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? 38 And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? 39 And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ 40 And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ (ESV)

Monday, May 9, 2011

How Homeschoolers get into Uni in QLD:

So to summarise, as I understand, these are options that have been tried and tested here in QLD. Usually you apply to get into uni (and for some TAFE courses too) through QTAC to, but not always. There are three ways to get into uni with QTAC involved: OP route, QCE route , and Alternative Entry Route:

(1) OP route with Brisbane Distance Ed or Groves

(2) QCE route which is the way Michelle Hornery at Jubilee goes. She really is the expert in this area and is the best person to talk to about this route! My personal worry with this route is that the very academic child can't find enough alternative things to do to boost their overall score and make it look as good as they actually are - which is why I hesitated with my present Y 11 student, he is so not into drama, boys scouts, gym or whatever. (I don’t know of anyone who has done this on their own, but I guess it is possible????? If you know how to???)

(3) Alternative Entry, registered with a DE school which will give you an official Y12 cert. but not an OP certificate. Most DE schools expect you to follow their curriculum, which is usually ACE or limited like Groves. The most flexible being the Jubilee options with Paul Johnson and Jason Kaufman. You boost your alternative entry score/get extra points from QTAC for doing uni subjects (all uni's now have a y11/12 program) or for doing TAFE courses. And for STAT (AU) exam and SAT (USA/international) exams. (This is the way we are going)

Another thought

ACE used to guarantee a place at some uni’s as their subjects were recognised as pre-requisite subjects or because their ACE certificate was recognised???? But this whole system is falling ‘out of favour’, in education circles so I don’t know where it is going???? They are trying to make changes to keep up with times/adjust it for QLD/National curriculum standards. Last I heard it was waiting for the updates to be approved after improvements were made

I personally do not like this system and would be very nervous about relying on this system for entry to uni. , with uncertainties presently surrounding it. But for all I know, it might provide a way for uni entry for many years to come! And if it did go belly up, anyone using ACE could use whatever else we use to get in too of course!

(4) ) Alternative Entry Pre- requisites subject for getting into uni’s: Do them at uni of choices: (a) Each uni has their only pre-requisite English and Maths etc. courses which you can do to gain entry. It takes extra time and money but is easiest if you say want to go to UQ badly and have left it too late to go any other way. (b) And you can do the same at TAFE.

My problem a few years ago with this was that they were not very flexible, esp UQ - i.e. they would not promise that they would take you if you did English with TAFE or another uni. So you really needed to know exactly which uni you wanted to go to and do their pre-requisite courses. (Maybe this has changed or I was speaking to the wrong person???)

(5) Alternative Entry Pre- requisites subject for getting into uni’s: Do QSA EXAMS: Anyone can sit the senior external exams, see http://www.qsa.qld.edu.au/2423.html , even if you have not received tuition for these subjects. The curriculum is easily available, so there is nothing stopping you from studying it yourself and sitting the exam, giving you your pre – requisite subjects for a uni like UQ. I have just phoned then and there are new rules this year; so you can only sit it in Y12, and only two subjects if you are registered with a school and then supposedly only if you school cannot offer you this subject to you. But there seems thre may be a way around this …. Apparently you can sit as many exams as you want if you are an adult student and a 16 yo might qualify.

You have to be very well organised and not miss the QSA exams – the closing date this year is the end of April.


I think this is the form that could be used by home schoolers to apply to sit the QSA exams as an ‘adult student’. It was implied today when I phoned that they could consider a child an 'adult' student. Maybe we need to get pro-active and see if en masse they can provide a way for home schooling students to always be eligible for these exams. How about us all making a phone and writing - asking them to change rules to provide a way for us to permanently be eligible!

(6) Alternative Entry Pre- requisites subject for getting into uni’s: The age for mature age is different for every uni/TAFE it seems. Pre-requisites are more flexible then, I think??????, depending on the uni/TAFE.

(7) Alternative Entry Pre- requisites subject for getting into uni’s: QUT is the exception re pre-requisites: They have no pre-requisites for each subject, so as long as you go the alternative entry way and score high enough you are in!

(8) Alternative Entry Do your own thing/Put together your own y 11/12 cert Can you go through QTAC? Can you register with the home schooling unit at y 11/12 level, I thought not. The kids I know who have gone this route have never been registered at all

I don't know of anyone who has applied through QTAC this way. I wish someone was brave enough to just try!!! I keep thinking I should ask QTAC if they will accept a professionally done cert. with a portfolio to back up.

(9) ) Alternative Entry Do your own thing/Put together your own y 11/12 cert ...and go via TAFE, I know plenty of kids who have done this.

(10) ) Alternative Entry Do your own thing/Put together your own y 11/12 cert...and do Open Uni by distance; some of their courses don't need a Y12 cert. And for some of them you can do a few subjects first without meeting the pre-requisite criteria, prove yourself as good and then apply to do the rest of the course without having pre-requisites. There is a limited choice as to what you can do there though. http://www.open.edu.au/public/home

(11) ) Alternative Entry Do your own thing/Put together your own y 11/12 cert ...and approach a uni directly i.e. see if you can get a place through the back door. Send a letter; make an appointment with HOD/lecturer bringing text books etc. If you talk to any old body, you won't get in as no one wants to get into trouble for having done the wrong thing. But if you have a contact with a lecturer who knows his subject well and is willing to listen to you, can get in this way. I know of a boy who got into USQ like this ( his curriculum/subjects were not officially ‘recognised’.) He showed his Saxon Advanced Maths Textbook and got into Engineering.

(12) Alternative Entry Do your own thing/Put together your own y 11/12 cert If you have done a subject with a uni at Y11/12 level and do well you are offered a place. Of course most uni’s still expect you to fulfil pre-requisites too.

(13) Alternative Entry Apply to a uni that is easy to get into and then transfer over to the university of your choice. CQU. Or QUT or Open universities where their courses that have no pre-requisites. Some Open universities courses don’t even require a y 12 cert. I know of people who did this a long time ago, not sure if it would still work – they seem to be getting fussier about this????? And only doing cross accreditation with certain unis that they have connections with. I think for example that QUT will not cross credit for USQ but will for South Bank TAFE. It may me you will get in but have to re-do some subjects again.

(14) Alternative Entry Some universities/departments at uni’s actually like homes schoolers: Lets get a list together….Christian Heritage University was keen on home schoolers (as they did so well) some years ago and you could approach them directly. My daughter got an offer with them, although she did not take it up. http://www.chc.edu.au/

It would be good to develop a list of all this sort of information…. uni’s (and their courses) that ‘like’ home schoolers etc - to have handy list for future HS graduates! I have for years though that we really need a web site to bank all this sort of information for other home schoolers as we lose it as each child leaves ‘home school’. There are so many different ways do go and different combinations thereof. And not everyone is going to like one way only, and we all need to figure out all ways and explore what is right for each for our own kids.