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All rights reserved by Everest Academy
Everest Academy is a ministry of Everest Family Church in Hayden. We offer freedom along with quality resources, information, activities and support to those homeschooling in Alabama. We believe that the parent has the best interests of their children at heart. We believe that the parent is the first and only teacher that a child needs. In keeping with this philosophy, we wish to be a very hands-off cover school and allow the parent to lead and guide their children in the direction and at the pace they feel is best suited to their children. We ask only for what the law requires while offering support along with quality resources to aid families in their efforts.

How Long Does it Take to Homeschool?

How long does it take to homeschool every day? That all depends on your child and you. Some kids just naturally grasp things quicker than others. If you have in mind the seven-hour "school" day that your child is getting in the public school setting, let's discuss that a little bit. On average? I would say if you asked 10 different homeschooling families, you would get 10 different answers. The answer to that question is unique to not only each family but to each child. Guesstimation? I don't know, but it will not make you end up looking like this. Let me see if I can shed some light on the subject.

First of all, the State of Alabama does not give a legal definition of how many hours makes a "school day", but to put it in perspective for you, let's get a visual of an average middle/high school level "school day" in a public school setting.
  • Hold up seven fingers in front of your face. The seven fingers stand for the seven hours in a "school day": 
  • Take one finger down for the hour it takes for the car/bus line in the morning/afternoon along with homeroom time. When my son was in public school, he was brought out to the car line promptly at 2:30 p.m. every day.  Why?  I don't know.  Moving on...
  • Take one finger down for the embarrassing, sweaty hour of P.E.  Let's don't even talk about the immense joy of dressing out.  
  • Now take one finger down for lunch (if you can possibly call it that)/study hall.
  • Let's see, we are down to four hours a day. Hmmm...four hours. That's not bad. I think four hours a day is a reasonable amount of time to expect to homeschool every day. Don't you? 
  • But wait! Don't forget to take one hour away for the 10 minutes in between each class period to go to lockers, be bullied and pushed around, buy/sell and/or talk about those who are buying/selling drugs, and get to the next class.
  • Take one hour away for the time it takes in each class to take roll for that class, take up homework, hand out papers, answer the same question three or four times, break up fights, potty breaks, etc.
  • That leaves you with two hours. Two hours out of seven.?????
  • Okay, so we are down to two hours, but wait! Don't forget about the hour of (mandatory) electives that your child has everyday which is usually art, chorus, band, etc. So...now we are down to just one hour a day.
  • Let me suggest to you that it only takes half the time to teach one child something as it does to teach a classroom full. That leaves you with about one-half hour of actual learning that your child is getting in a school setting. That is on the days that they do not watch a Disney movie, go to a pep rally, have a fire drill, sit in the principal's office, etc. Don't even get me started on that whole "No Child Left Behind" crap.  Did you not ever wonder why your kids had so much homework to do when they got home from school? Now you know why when you ask your child what they did that day at school they almost always inevitably say, "Nothing."
Let me make clear that I am not discounting the fact that your child needs to eat lunch, have physical education time, study music or art, etc., but I am sure that is not what you were referring to when you asked the question, "How long does it take to homeschool a child each day?" Let me also make it clear that I am not putting blame on the school system or on the teachers. That's just the way it is, but it doesn't have to be that way.  

Now that we have a little perspective, let's get back to your original question of, "How long does it take to homeschool every day?" There are many different variables that can change this answer such as:
  • How many children do you have? Obviously it is going to take more time with five kids than it is with one. How much more time? Again, more variables such as...
  • How old is your child(ren)? Younger children who are not reading and writing yet take more one-on-one time teaching them everyday skills. Older children can largely self direct themselves with your main job being to provide them with the resources that they need. If you have children near the same age, you can combine learning going a little more in depth with the older children. You can also combine reading time, videos, field trips etc. 
  • Are there a lot of outside disturbances? Pretty self explanatory.
  • Is your child very focused or have the attention span of a gnat (which is actually a misnomer by the way)? If you have a child with a short attention span, try breaking up their day into small bite-sized blocks of learning. Try doing some book work followed by taking a walk and doing nature studies, etc.
  • Also, you should take into consideration what "lessons" are you doing? For instance, my son has a love of politics. I know that he is going to watch every political show, read every book, discuss politics as often and as in depth as tolerated (don't get him started, please!), and research it until his eyeballs fall out. He knows FAR more than I would ever CARE to know. Of course, I provide him with resources to delve into, but I don't actively count this as his "school" time because I know he is going to get it anyway. Does that make sense? 
All of these are things to take into consideration. As you begin homeschooling, a lot of this will become clear to you.  Your days will become a natural ebb and flow of learning if you will let it.  You will find learning in places you never even thought of. Each day will be different and full of all kinds of learning opportunities. Be adventuresome and creative. Homeschooling should be more about learning and life and nurturing the LOVE of learning rather than fulfilling a daily time quota. (I'm just sayin'!)

~written by Deb Spradlin~


~Note from Deb~  This info is FYI only.  Everest does not have a robotics team.  If you are interested in starting one, I would be happy to advertise for you.  

Dear Fellow Homeschoolers,

As a homeschool parent I have really appreciated the values and opportunities my children have received through participation in FIRST Robotics, not only in technical areas, but in various business areas as well. In six weeks we built a 120-pound robot to play Frisbee and climb a 8-foot pyramid!

Team Higher Voltage would like to invite you to attend a FIRST Robotics Competition regional event in your area in the next few weeks. See http://www.usfirst.org/whats-going-on to find the dates and locations near you.

Even though there are 2000 high school FRC teams worldwide, our homeschool team won an invitation to attend the 2012 World Championship Competition. There are FIRST teams for students ages 6-18. We have created two short videos about FIRST: one highlighting our team FRC Team Higher Voltage Video and another featuring the Career Exploration Opportunities available through FIRST. Career Exploration Through FIRST Video

We hope you enjoy learning about FIRST Robotics!

Kandis Brighton
Northwest Robotics Team Higher Voltage - Mentor

Student Spotlight: Dakota, Dalton, and Mary Kathryn Morrow

Dakota Morrow, 11th grade, Dalton Morrow, 8th grade & Mary Kathryn Morrow, 5th grade, all of Everest Academy, participated in State 4H Archery Competition for the 1st time on Saturday, March 9th in Anniston. They have been learning under the direction of Barbara Johns with Cullman County 4H for 4 months. Each of them competed in the division of "Compound with Sights". It was really fun to compete with other archers from across the state. Mary Kathryn competed as a Junior, and her team took 2nd place in the State overall.  She was in the top 4 of her team. Dakota & Dalton competed as Seniors, and their team also took 2nd place in the state overall.  Dakota was in the top 4 of his team. They hope to continue to learn & improve their skills as archers & return to state competition next year!

Woo hoo!  Way to go guys!

If your Everest Academy has done something you would like to spotlight, please send the info along with a pictures to Deb Spradlin at everestacademy1@gmail.com.  I love to hear all about it!

Scholarships & Financial Aid

College Financial Aid & Scholarships
Man, oh man!  College can cost an arm and a leg!  Look below for lots of information on college financial aid and scholarship information.  

  • Fafsa.ed.gov - Free Application for Federal Student Aid application & information
  • Finaid.org - Loans, scholarships, and military aid
  • College Aid Calculator - Estimate your Expected Family Contribution (EFC) for college, according to federal financial aid guidelines
  • Welcome to the College Board's Scholarship Search!  We created this online tool to help you locate scholarships, internships, grants, and loans that match your education level, talents, and background. Complete the brief questionnaire and Scholarship Search will find potential opportunities from our database of more than 2,300 sources of college funding, totaling nearly $3 BILLION in available aid!  College Board
  • Shelby County Scholarship Page - Great listing of current scholarship opportunities. 
  • Homeschool Buyer's Co-Op - This site has a huge listing of scholarships and contests available to homeschooler's of all ages. 
  • Homeschool Scholarships - To inspire businesses and individuals to recognize the unique potential of homeschooled students by creating college scholarships designed  for them, and to provide a place for homeschooled students to find those scholarships. 

  • All info is FYI only.  Please contact the institution offering the scholarship or financial aide directly.
For additional scholarship and financial aid information, vist www.fastweb.com.

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ACT/SAT Prep Resources

ACT Preparation Booklet (PDF; 80 pages, 1,075KB)–FREE Includes test information, a complete practice test with scoring key, and a writing prompt with sample essays.

KAPLAN - This site has great information on the college application process, ACT & SAT testing, and CLEP.  They also offer opportunities to take a free practice ACT & SAT test.
Number2.com's online test preparation courses for ACT & SAT are totally free! By creating an account you can access a customized course that includes user-friendly tutorials, practice sessions that dynamically adapt to each student's ability level, a vocabulary builder, and more... I went in an created my own account here and was very impressed.

FREE SAT & ACT Test Prep Software is DONATED to Military Service Members and their families worldwide. Over the past three years, eKnowledge Corporation and a handful of patriotic NFL players have delivered more than 100,000 SAT/ACT test prep programs normally priced at $200, FREE to military families worldwide. The total value of the donation is now over $20 million.  Click HERE to learn more and sign up!

Student Spotlight: Zach Hamby

Zach Hamby, 7th grade Everest Academy homeschooler, received two awards on March 9 at the UAB-CORD Central Alabama Regional Science and Engineering Fair:
  • U.S. Army Outstanding Achievement Award
  • Honorable Mention (Junior Energy & Transportation Category)
Project: "How Slow Can You Go?"
Does surface area and shape affect a parachute's rate of descent?

Way to go Zach!!!  

If your child is enrolled in Everest Academy and has done something you would like other homeschoolers to know about, please email Deb Spradlin the info along with a picture to everestacademy1@gmail.com to be a Student Spotlight!!!  I hear about awesome things your kids are doing all the time but rarely do you guys send me the info!!!  Please do!