Would you like me to speak to your group?
I love encouraging others – we’re all in the trenches together, working wholeheartedly! You can contact me to check on my availability for your conference by emailing me!
I’ve been speaking at conferences since 2012:
- Alabama Homeschool Expo, Montgomery, AL, 2012
- Rocky Mountain Catholic Home Educators Conference, Denver, CO, 2012, 2015
- Kansas City Conference for Catholic Homeschoolers, Kansas City, KS, 2015
- Grace Gathering for Catholic Moms, Grand Rapids, MI, 2016
- ARCH Catholic Homeschool Conference, Houston, TX, 2017
- Minnesota Catholic Home Education Conference, St. Paul, MN, 2018
- The Catholic Homeschool Conference, Online, June 25-27, 2020
- several smaller homeschool and church groups
- Your Morning Basket: A Considered Booklist, podcast
- A Mother’s Morning Basket, podcast
- Homeschool Connections REFRESH! MidWinter Conference (online)
- Simply Convivial: Let’s Talk Planning online workshop
Online and print publications:
- TAN Homeschool: Finding Beauty In Homeschooling Through the Seasons
- mater et magistra magazine for Catholic Home Educators
- Aleteia online magazine
- iheart PLANNERS: Walk Your Plans from Paper to Reality
- Erin Condren blog
The following are my conference talk topics with some documents and printables that may be helpful resources in order to put ideas into action.
Rebuilding Culture by Doing the Next Thing
Where are we on the cultural roadmap? It doesn’t take much looking around to see a bleak picture. So what do we do? How can we – as moms – do our part to fix this broken culture? Is this out of our reach – a job for politicians and those that have hours of time to volunteer in civic capacities? Actually, it’s our job, moms! And it’s not as hard or out of reach as we might think! The simple answer: do the next thing! We rebuild culture through the family and with the Church – I’ll show you how!
- Home is a haven for truth, goodness and beauty! No matter your circumstances
- Why it’s so important to teach children objective truth and how to lay the proper foundation so that they can recognize truth!
- Beauty is something we should be in touch with daily.
- Nurture wonder; embrace order; laugh often
- Follow the Church’s liturgical year in your home! Start simple and build!
- Guard and invest in the Sacrament of Matrimony.
This talk is all about encouraging the little ways we can re-build Catholic culture – and it’s so simple! It starts with doing the next thing!
The Morning Basket – Ageless & Inspiring
I embraced the idea of a Morning Basket almost 12 years ago – before it was popular or even had a name! I wanted to brainstorm a collection of inspiring books and things that could be ageless in its offerings, span abilities, speak to loveliness, and give the day an inspiring start. My idea was to gather this collection in a basket and enjoy it each morning – and thus it became the Morning Basket. While many embrace this idea now, calling it a variety of inspiring names, the idea is the same – inviting and rich, the Morning Basket is a collection of offerings that can stand on its own as the day’s work if needed.
- What is a Morning Basket & how does it work?
- Learn the 4 essential things that will streamline your day and rebuild culture – through the Morning Basket!
- Let’s brainstorm how to build your own Morning Basket – choosing the books and things for your Morning Basket!
- What about the different ages of your children? Learn how to implement Morning Basket with kids from high school to preschool.
- And finally, let’s talk about some common challenges you may encounter in Morning Basket time!
Morning Basket Inspiration and Planning Grid – for an overview of the Morning Basket and a planning grid for planning your Morning Basket.
Planning: For the Home and Home Education
God is not a God of disorder or chaos, but of peace. (I Corinthians 14:33) As moms, it can be difficult to find planning peaceful much less live out those plans – and that could be because we’re not properly filtering planning ideas through our particular season of life or our planning temperament. I want to encourage making use of the virtue of prudence to take inspiring ideas and filter them so that each mom’s planning style can emerge and assist the day. Time is a gift; planning allows us to steward the gift of time!
Planning in home education is all about considering. Consider God’s plans first – this is your season of life. Consider your overall goals. Consider your children (ages, grades, how many). Consider worthy books and things. Consider a planning tool that is intuitive to you!
Considering anything involves some contemplation and prayer, and this sets up an attitude of stewardship when it comes to planning. Stewardship nurtures gratitude for blessings and an ability to get real about plans! When you see your plans as a tool for the big picture and then walk them one-step-at-a-time toward –> yearly plans, term plans, weekly and daily plans – we end up with something workable and real. Live it a little and then consider again!
- Consider and Brainstorm your Season printable. Read the article – Finding Beauty in Homeschooling Through the Seasons – written for TAN homeschool.
- Planning Series: Know Thyself! Planning with the Temperament God Gave You
- My post at iheartplanners – Walk Your Plans from Paper to Reality
- A Considered Booklist – how to build a booklist from scratch that turns into plans you can follow at the daily level!
- The Years Considered Booklet...is intended to print and help mom walk the planning of books and resources inward from a grander, overall view…to smaller yearly details. Note that all these plans include a 12 year planning guide which follows the chart, allowing you a place to jot down ideas and resources as you come across them for your child – whether the idea is for this year, next year, or five years from now.
- – to print and customize for your own child.
- Big Picture Chart Based on a Charlotte Mason Programme of study, this is the version we use so it reflects our family’s big picture plan. Note that the small yellow “x”s found in the American History row indicates that we study our own national history alongside another period of history that year.
- Big Picture Chart – blank chart – follow the suggestions for a Charlotte Mason Programme of study with the ability to note your family preference for studying a period of history and any history rotations (note that CM does not indicate when to study particular science topics and this just reflects our choice).
- Big Picture Chart – blank chart with generic history periods– with subjects listed for all 12 years of study on a blank chart so that you can customize it entirely for your own child and family.
A Living Education With Charlotte Mason
Introducing Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy, the cornerstones of a Charlotte Mason education, how this might look in the home, how a living education with classical principles imbues a love of learning!
- A Considered Booklist 2018 – a resource listing and step by step guide for building your own yearly booklist
- Scheduling Books and Pages — Vertical orient – a guide to assist in knowing how many pages of reading Charlotte Mason assigned in her Programmes of work which in turn helps the home educating mom know how many pages of reading to assign for a given child: in the year, for the term, for the week, and for the day.
- Charlotte Mason resources for learning more – helps for learning more about her philosophy and methods of education
- CM’s 20 Principles of Education – taken directly from her 6 volumes of books
Language Arts using Charlotte Mason/Classical Principles
This talk covers all aspects of language arts in the 12 years of a Charlotte Mason education.
- Considered Language Arts a free book in pdf form to print and read covering Charlotte Mason language arts methods. This book is based on the series of language arts posts at Wildflowers and Marbles.
- CM Language Arts Summary – a simple table that allows you to see at a glance the Charlotte Mason language arts methods, what they might replace from a standard workbook approach, and the ages the methods are used.
Helpful posts and articles on this topic are:
- The Balanced Whole in a Charlotte Mason Education
- Charlotte Mason and Unrolling a Panorama During High School
- All of the Charlotte Mason posts at Wildflowers and Marbles
Home Education: A Beginning
For the new homeschooler, this talk introduces some basic home education ideas that will help distill decisions and diminish the mystery behind homeschooling.
- Home Education Philosophies – this worksheet takes a very basic look at the most common educational philosophies used in home education. Understanding a philosophy of education is important because philosophy informs the methods used in that form of education and it can also dictate the money spent, and the way you brainstorm challenges that come up.
- Home Ed Resources for Beginning – includes books, links to various curriculum providers and resources that could assist a Catholic home educator in beginning this journey with tools to work with.
Nurturing Wonder Within Early Childhood
There are no printables from this workshop. This workshop is based on a Spring 2010 article I wrote for mater et magistra magazine for Catholic Home Educators. Check here for back issue availability of the Spring 2010 magazine.
This article – Let them Wonder – closely parallels the topics in this talk.
Brainstorming: Working Wholeheartedly Toward Virtue
This conference was built specifically to speak to the skill of brainstorming within home education.
It’s never perfect. Nothing is rosy. Your living room is draped in 7 baskets of clean clothes waiting to be folded. The 7 year old has forgotten how to read. Algebra is a foreign language to you and your 9th grader needs help with it. And the toddler has completely forgotten she’s potty trained. What do you do? Where did you go wrong? Did you go wrong?
Many times, there is a knee jerk reaction to look around (online, in a book) to find an answer, a cure, a curriculum that will solve all the worlds problems. Think like a pioneer and do some prayerful on-your-knees-brainstorming! All of those challenges are opportunities to build virtue, but we’ll have to be courageous enough to meet them and dig in! Brainstorm it – I’ll show you how!
Managing the Needful Day With Saints Martha and Mary
So often, we as moms find ourselves lost in the Martha side of our vocation – cooking, cleaning, making lists, trying to keep our home ordered and establish some kind of routine for sanity’s sake. Let’s not forget to be like Mary, and see the face of Christ in each of our children and our husband. This has to be the foundation of our vocation of service lest we find ourselves flitting about like Martha, endlessly chasing after bits and pieces and missing the one thing needful.
- For background, you might start with this article I wrote on a Mother’s Rule of Love.