Five biblically-based Christian women will be speaking on who women are in Christ, Whose they are, and how they can make a difference in the culture in which we live at the "For Such a Time as This Christian Womens Retreat."
The retreat, to be held September 15-17, 2023 at Dogwood on Lake Norman in Sherrills Ford, NC (outside of Charlotte, NC), will feature nationally-known Christian author, speaker, and podcaster Heidi St. John, podcaster Julie Holmquist, author and speaker Terrie McKee, and Bible teachers Julie Denham and Stephanie Vroege. Worship will be led by Annamarie Smith.
"The 'For Such a Time as This Christian Womens Retreat' is a time of worship, learning about who we are in Christ, and what our role is in the world in which we live. We will discuss how we can biblically fight for our families, and know we are not alone: there are an incredible number of women in the Bible who fought for themselves, their husbands, children, and their country. This retreat is a time away from the busyness and grind of life, to get back into the Bible, have fellowship with other Christ-believing women, and walk away rejuvenated in Christ and armed for the spiritual battle we face. The sessions will support these themes biblically and with practical application--and a lot of prayer," said McKee.
The retreat is developed and implemented by IAJ Ministries, LLC, a conference and retreat planning company owned by McKee. "This retreat is born out of asking Jesus one night in prayer what He wanted me to do," said McKee. "That same night, I had a dream about 100 women standing on the banks of a lake, being poured into biblically by a total of five women. The morning after, I immediately did an Internet search for retreat venues near Charlotte, and Dogwood on Lake Norman popped up. When I visited there, it was the venue I had seen in my dream. It was then I know -- God was in this."
The retreat is open to 100 Christian women. Accommodations, meals, snacks, and all program materials are included in the cost of the retreat. The early-bird pricing is $375 per person until May 31; on June 1 the price goes to $415. Accommodations are hotel-like with two women per room with a private bath. Accommodations are assigned; however, participants have the option of choosing their roommate on the registration form.
IAJ Ministries is also looking for sponsors for this event. Gold level sponsors are $3,000 and receive recognition at the event, in news releases, the event website, on social media, logo placement at meals, material placement in the swag bag, sponsorship of a prayer parlor, and a table for material placement at the event. Silver sponsors receive recognition at the event, in news releases, social media, website, as well as material placement in the swag bag and sponsorship of a prayer parlor. Silver sponsorships are $1,000. Bronze sponsors, at $500, receive recognition in news releases, at the event, and on the website. Friend sponsors are $200 each and receive recognition.
One Gold sponsor has already been obtained. Bella Home Services, out of Fayetteville, NC is a locally/woman-owned cabinet and home-renovation design source dedicated to high-quality yet affordable products and custom interior design services throughout North Carolina.
Each participant will receive a hefty swag bag, involvement in a more intimate "prayer parlor," led by an assigned speaker, and, harking back to Christian camp days, a Vespers devotional and worship with s'mores will be featured on the last night of the retreat.
For more information, see IAJ Ministries' website here. To register for the event, click here. The closest airport is Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT).
IAJ Ministries is a Christian conference and retreat planning company which plans and implements events for Christian women and homeschoolers. Visit their website at IAJMinistries.org.
Some say homeschooling is only for the younger kids in the elementary or middle school, but high school homeschooling is also a very popular educational choice. Only this time, the decisions lie in great part with the students themselves.
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Most that homeschool in high school are teenagers who cannot take the pressures at school, especially those of peer pressure and bullying. Others cannot catch up with the lessons and curriculum programs of regular schools or would like to start early in life through training, internship and community volunteering jobs that would help them be knowledgeable and prepared for the struggle outside the four walls of their school. Still others have been homeschooled their whole lives; why stop now?
Choosing the suitable curriculum for teenagers for high school is very important. There are a lot of materials or support they can get especially on the Internet. They can talk to other homeschoolers in established groups through message boards, forums and chats to build a network. Homeschooling sites are also all over the net; they can browse through these sites, find an established support group in their area, get some catalogs and enroll in a curriculum or they can create their own study program. Co-ops are equally as important.
This is good for those students who have very supportive and open-minded parents. But in case there are none and the student is left to carry out his curriculum by himself, homeschooling helps students to stand up and depend on themselves because one thing that is developed within is good independent study skills and more as they engage in continuous studying on their own.
In choosing the homeschool curricula, it is best if teenagers are present and take an active part in deciding which curricula to choose that would best apply to their learning styles and abilities. It's good for teenagers to create their own course of study. In this way, students will have good choices of activities which develop every aspect of their personality instead of just choosing a fixed program. There are different approaches to choose from and combine that would help in the holistic development of the student.
For high school, homeschooling can help them start in life and make a step forward through practical trainings and internship programs depending on the specialization they like to pursue. They can actually be successful in what they want and might do best in the future.
For more information on homeschooling in high school, please visit these sites below:
Electives to Teach
Why You MUST Teach Entrepreneurship in High School
Teach Your Teens to File Their Taxes
Life Skills to Teach Your Teen: Event Planning 101
Student Blogs: Why Your Teen Should have Their Own Blog
Homeschool High School Speech and Debate - 4 Frugal Resources
Preparing for College
Preparing Your Homeschooled Teen for College
Assigning Grades for Homeschool High School Transcripts
Assigning High School Credit and Planning High School at Home
101 Things for Teens to do in Summer
Balancing Academics and Fun in Homeschool High School
Thinking about After High School
Steps to Choosing the Right Degree After High School
Life After High School: Navigating Your Next Steps After High School
General / Planning High School
Homeschooling High School--Relax, You CAN Do It!
Homeschooling High School/5 Tips to Get Ready for the New Year/Special Needs High School
High School Archives by Year Round Homeschooling
An Authoritative Guide on How to Homeschool High School
Should I Homeschool My High Schooler?
Our Frugal High School Curriculum Choices
Homeschool High School English - Make Your Course YOUR Own
7 Sisters Homeschool (many, many high school curriculum resources)
Hundreds of high school courses at Schoolhouse Teachers
In the spring and summer, homeschooling content creators call this "convention season" and it's for good reason. There are so many homeschool conventions, conferences, expos, and days scheduled all over the country during the spring and summer that it warrants its own season.
This post may have affiliate links to homeschool conventions that help fund this website (and give you a good deal, as a coupon is included). We appreciate your support.
What does this mean for you, a homeschooler? It means that if you have any question about homeschooling, there will be someone at a homeschool convention that can answer that for you. If you're thinking about changing curriculum, you can browse, look through curriculums--even talk to the curriculum creator in a lot of instances.
Here are nine reasons why homeschooling families should attend homeschool conventions:
The first reason is the large variety of homeschooling speakers who pour out their expertise in sessions that are designed to help you and your children. There are keynote speakers that have been homeschooling for years (sometimes decades) and are fighting for you and your children on the national level. They have more encouraging knowledge in their little fingers that most have in their whole hand.
Last year's Teach Them Diligently in Pigeon Forge saw Kirk Cameron on stage, then Heidi St. John, and other powerhouse proponents of homeschooling. In smaller sessions you have homeschool content creators, curriculum writers, bloggers, and other homeschoolers who know what they're talking about, and give you that knowledge--and are often free right after the session for a few minutes or available in their booths to talk one-on-one with you. I know that after my session on special needs children last year at Teach Them Diligently-Pigeon Forge, I had a number of parents come to my booth to ask me specific questions about autism, ADHD, and other learning difficulties. They walked away with not only helpful information but also my card for further assistance. Many speakers are like that--or have resources that will help you in your homeschooling journey.
Tip: Bring a notebook to write notes, ideas as they come to you in sessions, questions to ask, booths to visit, etc. When you meet another homeschooling family and your families click, use your notebook to write their contact information down.
3. Phenomenal Sessions
Every homeschool convention company works tirelessly to bring in speakers who know what they're doing, and have something to say about it, and because of that, participants enjoy phenomenal sessions about a wide range of topics--from Homeschooling 101 to homeschooling special needs kids, to discussing government interference, and everything in between. You literally can gain a wealth of knowledge about homeschooling, and so can your kids. There are many sessions that relate to teenagers, such as choosing a college, or developing your high school transcript (your teens should go to these!). Every convention is different and offers a different slate of topics from which to choose.
3. Exhibit Hall
Here's where it gets fun -- and sometimes, overwhelming. There are so many booths exhibiting curriculum, curriculum helps, books, toys, opportunities--that it can get to be a bit much. Take your time, go through each aisle, making note of booths you want to come back and visit later (preferably, by yourself, while your husband or wife watches the kids out in the reception area).
I encourage you, if you and your spouse go to homeschool conventions together with the children, to give each spouse an opportunity to wander the exhibit hall alone. Last year, while I worked my booth at Teach Them Diligently-Pigeon Forge, my husband wandered the hall. He came back with a newfound love of homeschooling (yay!) and a lot of resources for our homeschooling daughter.
Also, go through the aisles with the children, too. They may see something that encourages them. Plus, it's great to see other homeschooling children and know they're not alone.
TIP: Wear very comfortable shoes. Leave the cute heels and flip-flops at home or hotel, and wear your sneakers. You will walk more than you think you will.
4. Children's Programs
Many homeschooling conventions will offer childrens' programs for little ones, elementary age, even middle school. When your kids get to be in high school, they can offer volunteer at these childrens' events (especially for Teach Them Diligently events). At some conventions, homeschooling high school graduations are held. Don't be afraid to let your kids be a part of the childrens' programs -- it gives them something to do, new friends to make, and gives you the opportunity to go to the sessions and exhibit hall in peace.
Tip: If allergies are a concern, simply pack your child's lunch and snacks, and make sure the staff knows about them. If your child has special needs, make sure the staff knows that, too.
5. Meeting Other Homeschoolers
Meeting other homeschooling families is a huge plus when attending homeschooling conventions. You realize you're not alone, and you can bounce ideas off one another. It's a great time of fellowship and meeting new friends.
6. Meeting Homeschooling Content Creators
Where else but a homeschooling convention can you actually meet Linda Lacour Hobar, the author of The Mystery of History, and talk with her one-on-one about history and what you liked about the curriculum? You can meet the very people that create your Bible devotions at the Not Consumed booth! You can meet me! I'd love to meet you and show you all the new things that are in my booth this year (you can preview them here).
TIP: Homeschooling creators work long hours to create and curate the things you see in their booths. The booths are not cheap, and they're certainly not free. Please do homeschooling content creators a solid and bring either cash or credit cards (most accept both or either) and buy something. It's a kindness--and keeps us going.
7. Buying Next Year's Curriculum
Often, you can find incredible deals on your favorite, or a new-to-you curriculum at conventions. Come armed with the credit card and go ahead and purchase it, taking advantage of any sales thay may be going on. Often (but not always), homeschool curriculum creators can ship the materials to your home so you're not lugging around 72 pounds of books throughout the exhibit hall.
TIP: Sometimes you'll buy a book and it'll weigh a good bit. Some conventions give swag bags but they're not hefty enough to carry a bunch of books. Bring a hefty totebag, an extra stroller, or something to carry your loot. Last year a family brought a wagon -- had their kids on each end and their haul in the middle. It was fantastic!
8. Traveling [according to my daughter who was scientifically polled for this article (meaning she walked in while I was writing and I asked her what the biggest benefit to going to homeschool conventions was to her)], is a side benefit of going to homeschool conventions. When you travel to a distant place for a convention, make it a fun time. Pigeon Forge (where Teach Them Diligently will be at this year) offers a huge amount of things to do besides going to the convention. Where else can you visit a Titanic exhibit, see a building with King Kong on it, and visit an upside-down house? We've stopped at educational and fun places on the way to a convention in Texas -- it breaks up the trip and adds a fun element to homeschool conventions (and makes that more educational).
9. Rededicating Your Family to the Homeschool Ideal
One of the most important aspects of going to a homeschool convention is the energy and confirmation of the "why" we homeschool. If you're teetering on the brink of giving up--by all means, go to a homeschool convention. Between the speakers, the keynotes, the sessions, meeting other homeschoolers, and exploring the booths in the exhibit halls, you will gain a new perspective on homeschooling and maybe recommit to it. It's important, especially in the culture in which we live as Christians, to see the importance of homeschooling. Attending homeschooling conventions can do that.
TIP: The food in convention venues is often pretty expensive. If you can (according to venue policies), pack your family's lunch. If you can't (because of policies), find a hotel near by in which to stay, and leave for an hour for lunch in your hotel, and come back. Or, keep the cooler in your car and go out to your car for lunch. Here's another tip: after a long day of conventioning, most of the time you just want to go back to the hotel. Bring a slow cooker with you from home, start it in the morning, and by the late afternoon and evening, dinner is ready for you when you get back to the hotel. Throw the kids in the pool, then shower everyone--it'll be an easy bedtime for everyone, just to get up the next day and either convention some more, or get on the road back home.
Here's a list of where I will be speaking and exhibiting, with a list of my session topics:
Tri-State Homeschool Conference
April 22, Shenandoah Junction, WV
Sessions: Homeschooling a Teen with Autism; Hope for the Overwhelmed Homeschool Parent; Homeschooling One Child; Life Skills, Chickens, and More
Teach Them Diligently-Pigeon Forge (affiliate link)
May 4-6, Pigeon Forge, TN
Coupon code ($20 off): McKee23
Session: Strategies on Homeschooling Kids with Special Needs
Gastonia Homeschool Day
May 8, Gastonia, NC
Thrive! The NCHE Homeschool Conference
May 25-27, Winston-Salem, NC
Sessions: Hope for the Overwhelmed Homeschool Parent; Homeschooling a Teen with Autism
Upstate Homeschool Expo
June 1 (4-8 pm); Greenville, SC
(C) 2023 Terrie Bentley McKee ALL RIGHTS RESERVED
Terrie Bentley McKee is an author and speaker who homeschools her youngest daughter. Married to her husband Greg, they have four children, all of whom have special needs of varying degrees. Terrie is a follower of Jesus Christ and tries to glorify God in all she does. To read more about her testimony, click here.
Homeschooling One Child is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com.
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