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We have had a very busy year! Here is a report on some of the things we accomplished this school year as a group!
GHSA Business and Support:
In August we moved into our new “home” at Faith Church, called Space by Faith. This space is available for support group meetings, co-ops, storage of our supplies, ongoing lending library/book sales.. We helped to clean out the room, get an aircon installed for efficient use of the room and organized members to clean the restrooms in order to rent the room at a low cost. We began to furnish the room and set up library. We received a large donation of books to pass on to members, as well as dictionaries for 3rd graders.
We made up GHSA shirts, began Scholastic books ordering again, and began to make teacher IDs
Fundraisers included: 2 curriculum/book/yardsales at our Space and one yardsale at Guam Plant Place; Dominoes, and Tupperware.
Set up Paypal account to more easily receive dues and provide reimbursements. Donations received from 90% of member families.
Maintained a post office box, and a website to which we made small updates, including FAQ. as well as maintaining calendar. Maintained gmail account answering many inquiries re: homeschooling on Guam, our group, and passing on information regarding opportunities around the island to group members. Maintained yahoo group where members (approximately 60 families) have had lots of buying and selling opportunities, supported one another through questions and answers and organized events and activities. We maintained a membership roster. We worked with authorities to clarify sports eligibility for homeschoolers. We maintained a GHSA facebook account.
We had three support group/planning meetings, two in August and one in January. We met with several prospective/new homeschoolers at our Space to give counsel and encouragement.
We began dialogues with Pacific Islands University for opportunities to partner with them and some families attended their Preview Day.
Academic programs/Seminars included:
Middle School and High School Academic Challenge Bowl (ACB), GHSA Spelling Bee in order, sending a representative to the regional bee , Math Olympiad, Math Counts, Math Kangaroo. We entered Fishbowl competition for the first time. We had coral reef monitoring sessions, 2 Rhino Beetle sessions with folks from UOG, NAWIC Block event and we began planning an Underwater ROV project for August.
Members worked together for a personal finance course (for high schoolers) and Chamorro language classes. A member offered some art classes and workshops.
We had an International Day and social at Leo Palace duplex.
We hosted Covenant Players for a drama workshop.
We organized SAT10 testing and PASS testing.
We had field trips to: Daddy’s Donuts, Strikezone, Jungle Boat Cruise, Federal Court, Dominos, Talofofo Falls, Grow Guam, Horse farm (July).We also had two Chamorro Month field trip outings to UOG Charter Day and Hagatna Walking (Heritage) Trail.
Fellowships and socials included picnic in August at the beach, Mom’s Night out at a restaurant in December, Valentine social at the beach. We had our kids organize and execute their first Teen Social. Members got together to encourage each other regarding transcripts and reporting.
We had outreach (caroling) at St. Dominoes and some members adopted a bus stop to maintain.
We now have a permanent “home” for our group where we can house our “stuff”, visit with prospective homeschoolers, and meet for support group meetings, co-ops etc. Located at Faith Church in Mangilao, we chose the name “Space by Faith” not only for its location but because of the need to step out by faith in order to rent the room on a regular basis. This space has given us more stability and has really helped the group to reorganize and begin to expand to offer more to our members!
The Guam Home School Association (GHSA) recently held its annual Academic Fair at the Palm Ridge Inn in Barrigada. Twenty-eight students impressed the crowd with their oral presentations based on research on their topic of choice.
This fair was an opportunity for the kids to polish their skills in many areas such as research, critical thinking, organization, graphic display and communication. The fair motivated the students to do their own research, investigating a topic in great detail. This was a very positive and encouraging experience. Each of the home school students who participated worked hard on their projects and was proud to show them off. The parents were rewarded by seeing their children demonstrate appreciation and genuine interest in the sharing of knowledge.
The topics were as diverse as the kids, ranging from displays of sink holes, tornadoes, catapults and robots, to photography and Anime Art. The youngest participant, Sophie Caser, age 4 showed us some of the creepy crawly bugs she found around her yard. We learned a lot about the interaction between electricity and magnetic fields from Aric Huhne. And, if you ever thought Iceland was cold and icy, think again! Sarah Gregson, age 15, informed us that the weather there is actually quiet balmy. Ethan Mendiola, age 13, tested three hypotheses on buoyancy and impressed the audience with his combination of math, science and computer proficiency. A lot of work went into a display by 11 year old Caleb White using a cabbage leaf as a simple indicator for testing acids and bases.
Many of the tri-fold displays were full of facts and data but were also engaging. We felt the difference good insulation can make under a heat bulb (the sun) in the tropics by Evan Perez, age 9. The lever display by Christian Caser, age 9, dared the the kids to try to lift a cement brick using just their pinky finger. Donovan Nelson’s research on catapults was very quickly tested in an ad-hoc setting.
The Guam Homeschool Association has several other events planned in the coming months. A Chamorro Day event and a class with the Covenant Players drama team are in the works for March, while the International Day will be held the first week in April. A Homeschool Fair in May will allow students the entrepreneurial opportunity of selling their handcrafts or bake sale items while the parents their curriculum and books. Ending the year will be the Fine Arts Fair and Graduation Ceremonies. If you are already homeschooling and not a member or want to learn more about home schooling the GHSA welcomes new families.
The GHSA is a homeschooling support group led by conservative Christians, with a diverse group of members from other faiths, within our membership guidelines. We are not a school, nor an accrediting/regulatory agency. We are simply a group of moms and dads who seek to encourage one another as we each homeschool our children.
Our purpose is to provide the support and guidance necessary to effectively home school in accordance with Guam’s public law and within the guidelines of our Statement of Faith. Monthly, seasonal and annual events and programs, as well as special classes are made possible through the efforts of volunteer members and leaders. Members communicate through a Yahoo Groups email forum Annual events include: Curriculum Fair, Academic Fair, Book Fair, Kick-off Picnic, Ice Cream Social and Chamorro Day. As a group, we participate in the Academic Challenge Bowl, Scripps Howard Spelling Bee, Math Olympiad and miscellaneous educational classes, sports programs and related activities. For more information please contact email firstname.lastname@example.org.
What? Curriculum, books, baked goods and crafts for sale by homeschool. Homeschoolers on hand to answer your questions about homeschooling on Guam.
When? Friday April 26th 10 am – 3 pm
Where? Faith Bookstore in Maite
Hope to see you there!homeschool fair flyer 2013