Fusion Homeschooling Includes Media Literacy Class for High School Students

With the world now at almost everyone’s fingertips, the need for a critical understanding of an ever-expanding and increasingly dominant communication environment is becoming even more important.

Fusion Homeschooling, beginning Aug. 9, will offer a Media Literacy class as an “elective” for high school students to help them develop critical thinking skills to interpret media content and writing skills appropriate for media analysis.

I will be the instructor for the 60-minute class, and for more than four decades, I have worked as a writer, editor, and designer for newspapers, magazines, newsletters, and online publications and in broadcasting. I also have done research on and taught courses dealing with media technology, media law, and media history.

I have watched media evolve from the newspaper on the porch to live television images from around the globe to 24-hour cable channels to access to news and information on smartphones. 

My goal is for students in the Media Literacy class to gain a comprehensive perspective on the evolution of communication from storytelling to social media and to develop the skills necessary for 21stcentury life and work: accessing information, evaluating information critically, and using information effectively. 

For more information about the Media Literacy class, please contact me:  Jim Leonhirth, [email protected]

Guest blog post by Jim Leonhirth, PHD

How to Successfully Homeschool Without Losing Your Sanity

The dreaded day has arrived. The day you don’t have the time, energy, or patience to keep up with curriculum, keep up with housework, or meet the academic needs of your child. But trust me. There is a way to keep your sanity and to keep your child out of public school.

This is going to be a long post in an effort to help you!  You will find general explanations, pdfs to download and print, and a list of ways CORE classes can help you homeschool your child.

IF YOU ARE NEW TO CORE CLASSES, HERE ARE THE BASICS:

  • You have an educational coach that plans all of the curriculum, activities, and scope and sequence for your child.
  • Your child meets on Fridays in a class setting with the educational coach to learn new skills, review skills, and practice skills with the class.
  • The educational coach will assign lessons, activities, and videos to do throughout the week to prepare for the next Friday’s class.
  • Your educational coach will be in touch throughout the week to ensure your child is successful.
  • You DON’T NEED TO PURCHASE ANY OTHER CURRICULUM FOR A CORE CLASS.
  • The only thing you, as the parent, need to do throughout the week is to make sure your child is doing their assignments and assist them if they need help. The educational coach will be able to be reached throughout the week if your child needs guidance.

HELPFUL PRINTABLE

Here is a helpful pdf printable to help you plan what subject you may need in order to see which subjects you would want to be CORE CLASSES for your child.

WHAT I AM GOING TO CHOOSE FOR MY KIDS

I am a board member and co-founder of Fusion. One of the reasons I am so passionate about finding quality CORE Classes for my children is that I really don’t have the time or energy into teaching every CORE subject this year. History will be one of those CORE classes I am going to chose for an educational coach to teach my kids.

You have to grab these classes when you know there are SO MANY awesome ways to teach American and Ancient History, but don’t have the time or energy to set up projects. I’m letting the educational coach do that on Fridays and then they can do the book work assigned during the week. DONE!

I’m putting my primary aged child in Write On because it includes crafts (which he loves) and the educational coach will provide EVERYTHING I need. Even videos throughout the week.

My elementary child butts head with me when it comes to writing. By the end of the day, I’m ready to pull my hair out. A Writing Foundations class that does ALL of the class work on Fridays is exactly what I need. I can’t sit with her throughout the week to make sure she has her writing done.

My middle schooler needs a writing class that I don’t have to facilitate throughout the week. She is a self starter, so I know having the educational coach on Fridays will be all she needs to do her writing on her own.

My middle child, who doesn’t like to read, is going to like reading so much more with a STEM project involved on Fridays. Plus, the educational coach will be providing assignments on reading skills throughout the week.

My middle schooler will have her assignments to do throughout the week, so I don’t have to worry about making sure I’m assigning the right books for her to read throughout the year.

After doing all of the math, with my busy schedule, it really does make sense for me to put my kids in CORE classes that I don’t have to take time to plan and execute. Plus, the more I can pull away as their facilitator, the better they will be as adults. If I didn’t put my kids in a CORE class, I could buy a curriculum that may not work for them and then I’d still have to plan and pull from other sources. As a work from home mom, I just don’t have time to do that anymore.

Here’s a list of the CORE classes I’m registering my kids for FUSION next school year:

3rd Grade:
Literature
STEM
Write On!

5th Grade:
Literature STEM
Writing Foundations
Basics of Mathematics
American History

Middle School:
Literature Writing
Ancient History

Flipping the Classroom for a STEM Driven World

There are many benefits to using a tutorial when homeschooling your child. For some, it could be hiring an educational coach to take over subjects you don’t want or have the time to teach at home. Tutorials can also bring your child special classes you would otherwise skip, such as theater, music, and dance. Tutorials can bring more accountability to your child when expectations to perform for someone other than you are required. But, there is one thing lacking in homeschooling tutorials – their inability to move past traditional teaching practices and to become more innovative with student learning.

Fusion Homeschooling has dedicated their mission to provide the resources and tools for educators and students to keep up with the 21st century way of learning. With a team of parents and educational coaches who are faithful to their craft, loads of time and research has gone into implementing a more technology driven curriculum for home and the classroom. “Flipping the Classroom” is a system that can take an educational coach’s class time and multiply it by allowing the students to learn through technology at home. Class time is not wasted on lectures or on in-class videos. This is all done at home in order for students to be ready for more in-depth learning with the educational coach through in-class activities and projects.

Empowered with a more interactive way of learning, students stay engaged with their lessons throughout the week as as they watch videos posted, or even made, by their educational coaches. Technology platforms are used to keep track of a student’s engagement throughout the week. Educational coaches can crop videos, add voice overs, and add questions for students to think about during an online lecture or video. Students have the ability to respond and get evaluated on their understanding. Understanding of concepts can be seen by the educational coach throughout the week, which drives the activities for class. Educational coaches also become the facilitators for the week, freeing up parents while the students learn at home. The flipped classroom approach is perfect for the homeschooled child.

There are many other ways students stay involved with their lessons through the flipped classroom approach. It’s interesting how students love to see their educational coach doing a video just for them. Educational coaches design videos that are interesting and short enough to keep their students’ interest. Students are encouraged to make and share their own videos for class. Learning by teaching is an effective way for students to master skills. Most of the time, student-made teaching videos are a lot more fun to watch than professional educational videos.

The flipped classroom approach works great with struggling learners as well. When material is presented before they meet with their peers in the classroom, they are less frustrated and more confident during activities. If students don’t understand a concept, they can contact their educational coach, and a video or an answer can be targeted for just that question. Feedback is immediate. With only an hour of class time each week, the time spent on the concept at home has been a huge success. Students have more time to process the information before beginning the in-class activities.

As Jon Bergmann, co-founder of the Flipped Learning Network, says, “Flipping your classroom gives students the chance to apply ideas rather than simply absorbing them.” We, as homeschoolers, want more for our children. Why go the traditional route? Isn’t that why we homeschool?

Hello Homeschooling Families!

We’re so glad that you’re checking out Fusion Homeschooling. We’re very excited about this new opportunity, and we hope that you will be too. In the future, we’ll post updates and thoughts on homeschooling, and other items right here (and the posts will appear in our blog section too).

If you’re just checking us out but want more info, send us a note through the contact form and we can answer any questions you have. Again, thank you for considering Fusion!