Don’t bother teaching kids to take notes

I didn’t teach my kids handwriting. I assumed they would learn to write when they had things they wanted to say on paper. I assumed that would come soon. I have 50 volumes of handwritten diaries going back to preschool, and writing was my lifeline from drowning in a dangerous family.

Show respect for the jobs kids will have in the future

I am a huge fan of hiring someone to teach me a skill. I learn a lot faster if someone watches me do it and tells me what I’m doing wrong. So, for example, I’ve had a professional show me how to do street photography (thanks, James), I’ve had someone show me how to create […]

Best time for homeschoolers to vacation: September

Each year I see more benefits to be had from homeschooling schedules. Ask for private lessons during school hours so you can get the best teachers who are booked after school. Do most of your academic tutoring during the summer so you have your pick of all the teachers who are out of school.

z airport dab

When kids are little, they believe what you tell them. They go with the flow. But the longer you homeschool your kid, the more curious that kid becomes about what’s really going on inside school. So I started looking at all news items about school as potential points of discussion with my kids. School defines […]

We’ve officially entered the era of Generation Z

The Washington Post published a list of books for women from Millennials who are entering the workforce. It’s a little late for that, because this year is the first college graduation for Generation Z. It’s time to make a mental shift. Every time you imagine what your kid will be doing when they grow up, […]

You’ll never guess the skills your kids will need for work

  I went hiking with my kids, and I couldn’t remember where the trail started. But my younger son remembered. And my older son remembered to put the tick collar on the dog. And I found myself going along for the hike, as a sort of passenger on the journey the kids set up for […]

Stop asking me questions about homeschooling that you’d never ask about school.

Schools decide the priorities of non-school time as well. In Newton, MA there is an extra period in the day so the school can require kids to try extracurricular activities that will make the kids more appealing to colleges. In Darlington, WI, there are half-days of school when the football team has a home game […]


I didn’t teach my kids any curriculum until 7th grade. Here’s how I did it: Reading Education insider Lisa Nielsen showed me all sorts of data that says kids of college graduates teach themselves to read. That turned out to be true for our family.

future professions

I was really surprised to read that since the 1960s, the professions that are deemed most prestigious remain unchanged. Medicine, military, public service, science/technology, journalism, clergy, law. Most lists, no matter how you define prestige, have these professions on the list. And if you change the modifier to admired professions, the list doesn’t change.

© 2023 Penelope Trunk