As a military homeschooling family, we have been separated from my husband for over 7 years from long deployments (at least 12 months in length) and other various training. Because of this, our family has some items that our homeschool just couldn’t do without. Okay, we probably *could* do without them, but we value them because it helps keep us strong even when we are apart!
We consider each item below a vital part of our family thriving through separations as well as in our homeschool regardless if daddy is home or away. I hope that this list is a blessing to someone who may be new to the military lifestyle or homeschooling, or perhaps both!
1. A Family Devotional. This is a non-negotiable in our family. Regardless if my husband is away or home, we always have a family devotional we are working through. We are currently working through Learning to Speak Life™: Fruit of the Spirit (authored by my husband and I) and it is changing the atmosphere of our home!
2. An Amazon Prime Membership. This has saved our family countless $$ when living overseas. We were able to get most items we needed over to Germany for free. While it wasn’t as quick as shipping to the US, believe me, as a military family living in a foreign country, it still benefited us tremendously. It also benefited us during 5 different year long deployments my husband served in the regions of Iraq and Afghanistan.
3. A Study Bible. We have used many different Bibles over the years. We are currently using the NIV Archaeological Study Bible: An Illustrated Walk Through Biblical History and Culture.
5. Pocket Chart Calendar. This has been an invaluable tool in counting down the days that daddy will be home. We just used this for our most recent separation (hubby just came home last night). We always mark the day he comes home with a “special day” place card. In addition to this, we also do a countdown chain. Both go seamlessly together and keep the little ones abreast who do not have the same concept of time as the older children do. And it is super frugal! Check out this post I wrote about 51 Uses For Your Pocket Chart.
6. My Trusty Scotch Laminator. Remember the pocket chart I mentioned? I need this to laminate those squares so they last longer! I also use it to laminate photos that the children use as keepsakes while daddy is away. This way the photos they sleep with can be cried on, drooled on, and rolled on and they still remain in tact. I know from experience! And of course we use this for a plethora of other homeschooling needs!
7. Prayer Time Together. This goes without saying. We are called to pray without ceasing, and our military family couldn’t survive and thrive without it. We value this time more than I can express in words
8. An unlimited supply of glo sticks. You just never know when your children will decide they need to go “dark” and these come in handy for when a military crisis strikes (pretend of course).
9. The Internet. This has blessed us beyond belief during the course of several long deployments. We’ve been able to use it to SKYPE with my husband, create and send videos for him, and many other things. And of course we use it for educational purposes and to keep in touch with family as we always live so far away from them!
10. Library Card. This one thing alone has transformed the face of our homeschool. We are able to access an amazing plethora of resources on most any subject we want. While living in Germany we access to the entire US military library database and had an amazing amount of books relevant to our life while living in Germany. This is a MUST have for any homeschool!
What are some of YOUR must have homeschool items?
Linking up with my sisters at the iHomeschool Network!