I finally made the late decision to attend the Christian homeschool conference to be held in Massachusetts this coming Friday and Saturday, April 24 and 25, 2009, given by MassHope. This will make six attendances in the last seven years.
Before going to a homeschool convention, especially a large one with many choices of lectures to hear and many vendors selling tons of stuff, having goals is important.
I decided to go to hear some lectures about teaching children with processing disorder type learning disabilities. I was on the fence as I know nothing abou the speaker and how knowledgeable she is or how good of a speaker she is. In my past career I'd received training on professional speaking and giving presentations to groups and indeed I did regularly give in-services, training sessions to existing employees and new hire's up to one hundred people at a time. Now I have little patience to sit and listen to a speaker with poor delivery skills, it grates on my nerves. My time is precious and I also don't want to sit and hear non-useful information or poorly organized material.
Some of the other lectures are the same topics by the same speakers that I've heard before at this conference in the past so I'm not too excited about the other speakers. I also own some of these recorded lectures and have listened to them more than once at home.
I have a short list of definately needed homeschooling curriculum. Some will be used in late spring this year. I plan to go to the vendor hall with list in hand and buy those things quickly before they sell out, just in case the inventory is low on these items.
Due to the big jobs I've done this year of culling books, reorganizing our books and redesigning the purpose for some rooms in our home I have a firm handle on the fact that I own way too many books than we will ever use. I see all that I own that we still have not had time to use. I have about fifteen boxes in my basement of stuff I hope to resell, somehow, or else it will wind up at a used book store, turned in for credit, swapped out on PaperBackSwap or just given away free to other homeschoolers.
I don't think I'll make many spontaneous purchases this time aroud as I am just feeling surrounded by overabundance.
A weird thing is this time none of my friends are going nor have any approached me to talk me into going. The general reason is they all feel they have too much educational stuff in their home already and don't want to be tempted to buy more. None are feeling in need of homeschooling information or encouragement, they are all coasting along just fine without exterior support.
(I do attend the Connecticut inclusive group's conference also but the vendor halls don't compare and the same topics are not covered for the lectures.)
If you want more information about the MassHope convention such as speaker list, lecture list, vendor list, and location, it can be found on the MassHope website. They accept walk-in registrations for one day or both days.