Homeschool with Pinterest (for the Organized & Unorganized Alike)

If you’ve been reading Raising Arrows for very long, you know Pinterest is one of my favorite homeschooling tools.  Today, I’m going to give you some ideas for using Pinterest in your homeschool from spectacularly organized to simple and functional!Homeschooling with Pinterest for the Organized & Unorganized Alike |
Super Specific, Super Generalized, or Somewhere in Between?

If you are a naturally organized person who likes content compartmentalized or you need to have parts of a whole broken down into bite-sized pieces, then you will want your boards to be super specific.  An example of this would be my friend Maureen Spell’s Pinterest boards:

Maureen Spell on Pinterest

Some of her boards include:
Everything Olympics
Learning Colors
Water & Mud Play
Letter O Activities
Human Body:  Brain

Basically, you would set up a Pinterest board for every topic you would like to study, broken down into compartmentalized pieces.  So, rather than having an ABC board, you would have a Letter O board like Maureen has.

Or you may choose to be very generalized in your approach to setting up homeschooling boards.  This keeps things simple by setting up boards like History, Math, Science, etc.  However, this might be difficult to sift through, so if you have a propensity toward generalizing, I’d suggest you generalize some and make other boards more specific to keep from driving yourself crazy.  This is what I do!

Amy Roberts on Pinterest

The reason I do this is because if too many things are too specific, I get lost just as easily as I get lost in generalized boards.  So, I have boards like:
Teaching Ancient World History
Teaching Medieval History
Teaching American History

This way I’m not sifting through a generalized History board, but it’s not so far broken down that I get overwhelmed by a myriad of boards.

This is totally a personality thing, so whatever type of organization is going to make you more likely to USE your boards is the organization system YOU need to use!

Hunter/Gatherer or Accidental Acquisition or Somewhere in Between?

I’m going to admit you that most of the time I fall into the Accidental Acquisition part of this question.  That means, I show up on Pinterest, not looking for anything specific, randomly run across things I like and pin them to appropriate boards.  You will never see my Pinterest stream full of 5 million cupcakes or 600 science projects – it’s just not how I work – I would burn out long before that.

But, the Hunter/Gatherer type of pinning is a really great way to fill your boards with useful information for specific homeschooling subjects, so sometimes I will do this if I really need some ideas.  You can do this a couple of ways:

1.  General Pinterest search.
2.  Pin from someone else’s subject specific board.

Homeschooling with Pinterest for the Organized & Unorganized Alike |

Personally, I feel like homeschooling pinning is best done from other people’s boards.  The general search is just too general unless you search for something like “American History Unit Studies” or something like that.  Otherwise, use the Boards button to find other homeschoolers who have created those kinds of boards and find great pins that way.

In the meantime, keep your eye out for great content that works well with topics you want to study.

How to Pull it All Together – Organized Style

To make a homeschooling plan from Pinterest in a nicely organized style can be very rewarding.  Sometimes if your boards are specific enough, you can school right off the Pinterest board.  Another option is to set up a plan in Evernote (<– see my post on how to do this) with links from your Pinterest board.  You can even do the old fashioned pen and paper method and notate what days or weeks you want to use which links from your Pinterest boards.

You can also make secret boards that you can organize school year, semester, or month by.  Simply make your secret board (it will show up at the bottom of your Pinterest profile page), and then repin from your individual boards anything you want to during that time frame.

How to Pull it All Together – Not so Organized Style

Frankly, you do NOT have to be super organized to use Pinterest in your homeschool.  In fact, a lot of times Pinterest is my fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants planning tool.  Sometimes I need an extra activity to solidify something we are learning.  Sometimes I need a “mom’s not feeling good” activity.  Sometimes I need a new way to teach something because what I’m doing just isn’t working.  Pinterest is a great place to pull together something quickly to facilitate learning!

Another way to use Pinterest in a more relaxed style is to find your Pinterest resources by week or day.  At the beginning of the week, you can make note of which links you want to use that week, or if you are having a particularly unorganized week, get up every morning and peruse your boards and choose a link or two to use that day.

I know Pinterest isn’t for everyone.  I know some people can’t help but get lost there and never use anything they pin.  I know for some people, it could spell a colossal waste of time.  But, for me, it has helped my homeschooling efforts tremendously!  It is like a great big network of homeschoolers sharing resources so I can be a better homeschooler!

If you are interested in reading more about how we use Pinterest and other technology in our homeschool, check out my series of posts on Using Technology in Your Homeschool!

The Large Family Homeschooling eBook is Here!

The Large Family Homeschooling eBooks is Here! |

Are you homeschooling a growing family?  Are you looking for ways to get it all done without losing your mind (and your joy)?  Do you need ideas for putting together all the pieces that make up your homeschooling day?

This is the ebook for you!

Only $7.99

Add to Cart

Large Family Homeschooling eBook | by Amy Roberts of RaisingArrows.netThis 170 page ebook includes :

*How to homeschool the hearts of your children.
*How to have enough of you to go around.
*How to keep your home clean and your homeschool organized.
*The best methods for homeschooling your growing family.
*Ideas for planning and record keeping.
*How to afford the large family homeschool.
*How to organize the large family homeschool
*How to handle babies and toddlers during school hours.
*How to homeschool through morning sickness and other difficult circumstances.
*How to tweak homeschooling methods to make them work for large families.


This ebook will give you tons of ideas and practical advice you can start implementing immediately!

It will give you the encouragement and confidence to homeschool your family with joy and gentleness!

Plus, within the pages of this ebook are some wonderful surprises just for you!

Freebies & Exclusive Coupon Codes from:



Finding Joy in Depression by Amanda Pelser

Simplified Dinners and Paperless Home Organization by Mystie Winckler

Circle Time by Kendra Fletcher

The Homemaker’s Guide to Creating the Perfect Schedule by Amy Roberts

Scholaric Easy Online Homeschool Planning

Total Transcript Solution

Large Family Homeschool eBook Resources | Amy Roberts -


Add to Cart

7 Things a New Homeschool Mom Needs to Know

7 Things a New Homeschool Mom Needs to Know | RaisingArrows.netThere are a lot of moms out there who are just beginning their homeschooling journey and have tons of questions.  Some have yet to start and are in the planning and pondering stages.  Quite a few have already gotten started, but feel like they don’t really know what they are doing.  And there are still more who have been doing it for a while and still feel completely lost.

This homeschooling thing is a daunting task.

While there are plenty of things I wish someone had told me about homeschooling, I also realize many moms just need to know they are going to a good job.  The specifics will sort themselves out.

That said, there are a few things you should consider in the early days of your homeschooling efforts – perhaps even before you get started.

1.  Why are you choosing to homeschool?

I’m going to tell you straight up – the answer to this will probably change over time.  It did for me.  Ultimately, you need to know why you are doing this.  You will get questions from others.  You will even get questions from yourself.  Homeschooling isn’t all sunshine and roses, so you need to be firmly planted when the storms come.

2.  What are the laws in your state?

This is one of those things I really don’t like to talk about because it drains the joy out of nearly every homeschool mom.  However, you really need to know the laws in your particular state because every state has different laws regarding homeschooling.  Most home schools are considered private non-accredited schools.  HSLDA has state-by-state information regarding homeschooling so you can be certain you are fulfilling the requirements of your state.

My word of caution here is to not let your state laws stress you out.  Many homeschoolers believe their state laws to be more stringent and confining than they actually are.  I live in a very lenient state that does not require much in the way of reporting; however, many homeschoolers I run into here believe our state requires testing and other things it actually does not require.  HSLDA can help you make sense of your laws and keep your homeschooling experience from being a nightmare.

3.  Where will your support come from?

Homeschooling is not easy.  It is important you prepare now for the support you will need later.  Support can come in all sorts of forms:  your husband, your mom, your church, a local support group, blogs, online communities.  And never, ever forget, the best support for you is the Word of God.  When everyone else seems against you, God’s Word stands firm and builds you up in running the race and striving toward the goal ahead.  Don’t walk into homeschooling unequipped.  (Two books that speak to the homeschooling mom are Psalms & Proverbs – read them often!)

4.  What are your daily goals?

It is important to know where you are going every day with your homeschooling efforts.  Know what subjects you want to teach, know what your teaching style is, know what you would like your days to look like, and know what you want to accomplish.  Also, know life happens and you will always need to be reevaluating your daily goals.

5.  What is your end goal?

Daily goals are great, but they become meaningless if you aren’t looking toward an end goal.  What are you hoping to have accomplished by the time your children are finished with their homeschooling years?  Where do you hope they will be in their relationship with Christ?  Are you looking toward college, trade school, something else?  Are you preparing now for where you want to be at the end?  Run toward the prize – it will help you stay focused.

6.  What is your budget?

Have you counted the cost of homeschooling?  This isn’t just about your financial budget, but also concerning your time and energy, your relationships with others, as well as those within your family.  Homeschooling costs.  Even if you find a way to homeschool for free, you still must understand that there are other costs involved, and learn to budget for those costs.

Don’t let your marriage fall apart because you are too busy homeschooling the children.

Don’t let your relationship with your children suffer because you are too busy being a schoolmarm.

Be prepared for friends and family who don’t homeschool to question what you are doing. Remember a gentle answer turns away wrath.

Learn to budget your time and energy to avoid burnout.

Be strong in the Lord!

7.  Keep learning about your children!

Your children are blessings that keep on growing!  They are not static and unchanging, so don’t school them that way.  Watch for those sparks of interest.  Feed the good stuff, avoid feeding the not-so-pleasant things.  Talk with them often.  Learn who they are, and who they want to be.  Never, ever forget in Whose image they were created!

Looking for encouragement as a homeschool mom?  Check out my Homeschooling page here on Raising Arrows!

Homeschool Convention Time! {Welcome Home Wednesday}

Teach Them Diligently Homeschool Convention 2014

Tomorrow morning, I hop a plane to Nashville for our first homeschool convention of the season! I am so excited! I always get giddy when it comes to homeschool conferences because it means refreshment and refocusing for me.  From the moment I attended my first homeschool convention back in 2002, I’ve been hooked!
{affiliate links included}

Over the years, Ty and I have attended many different conventions.  They each have their own flavor.  Teach Them Diligently has quickly become a favorite of mine because of its focus on families.  It’s not just about academics, and as a veteran homeschool mom, I appreciate that.  I need encouragement that goes far beyond the rigors of textbooks and spelling lessons.  This Nashville weekend is going to be a breath of fresh air!

I am also presenting 3 sessions of my own in Nashville!

Creating a Peaceful Home
Your Perfect Schedule
Large Family Homeschooling – based on my soon-to-be released ebook by the same name!

Large Family Homeschooling eBook releases April 1! |

I will be offering these same sessions in Dallas later in the summer.  If you are attending either conference, be sure to look me up!  I love meeting readers!

I also want to give you a FREE gift to help you plan and prepare for a homeschool conference.  They can be overwhelming and a bit like drinking from a fire hydrant.  I’ve compiled some posts I’ve written on attending homeschool conventions into a small ebook you can download by clicking on the icon below:

FREE Homeschool Convention Survival Guide |

I also want to note that in last week’s link up, Amy from Plain and not so plain offered a FREE Kindergarten & First Grade Curriculum, and Jennifer from A Heart for the Home gave some wonderful tips for How to Handle Homeschool Burnout.

The #1 clicked post from last week was from MamaGab, and yes, it was about babies – or rather No More Babies.  I ended up pinning this post to my Grieving Mother Pinterest Board because while Gabby’s fears did not stem from losing a child, her words echoed many of the same words in my own heart.  These are fears any mother who has had a traumatic experience must some day face.  A worthwhile read.

Now, it’s your turn! Link up as many as 3 posts from your blog and enjoy the other links left here!  {If reading via email, please click over to see the links and leave yours!}

Welcome Home Wednesdays
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Wanna Know What I’m Working On?

You might notice I’m not online as much.  You might notice my posts here are a bit more spread out.  And you might have noticed that sneaky little announcement in my sidebar…

Coming Soon - Large Family Homeschooling by Amy Roberts of RaisingArrows.netThat’s right!  I’m in the midst of pounding out a brand new ebook that I know you are going to love!  This is one meaty book full of practical ideas to homeschool your large (and not-so-large) family!

I’ve been keeping it a secret, but I just couldn’t contain it any longer!  I am so excited to be able to share all in one place the many things I have learned over the years and am still learning.  I pray this is a resource that reaches homeschool moms right where they are and gives them hope and joy in their homeschooling journey.

And please note – this is NOT a book ONLY for large families!  There are tons of tips and ideas that are perfect for any family size!

So, when can you expect Large Family Homeschooling to hit the virtual shelves here at Raising Arrows?  Next month – March 2014!  Just in time for my session at the Nashville Teach Them Diligently Convention on the same topic!  Yippee!

Will I See You in Nashville?

Teach Them Diligently Homeschool Convention 2014 Nashville{affiliate links included}

The deadline for the early bird registration for the Nashville Teach Them Diligently homeschool convention has been extended through this Thursday, February 13th!  I am so excited to be speaking in Nashville again this year.  There are going to be so many wonderful speakers and sessions there – it will truly be a time of refreshment!

On Thursday night, there will be a new homeschooler orientation session that will help you prepare to navigate homeschooling and homeschool conventions.  And don’t forget the wonderful children’s program and a concert with modern hymn writers, Keith & Kristyn Getty!  All of this wrapped into a weekend full of Gospel-centered homeschooling, parenting, homemaking, Christian-living encouragement!

Will I see you there?!