Health, Safety, Phy Ed - Meeting state requirements

Art, Foreign Language, Music, Nature Walks, as well as general ideas and encouragement
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Health, Safety, Phy Ed - Meeting state requirements

Unread post by LSH in MS »

momathomewith4 wrote:Good morning all! Just wondering if health is covered anywhere in MFW.

Also, if the subject isn't covered in MFW, I'm interested in learning what some of you are using for health.

Finally, just want to say that I really appreciate all the time some of you more experienced MFW users take to answer everyone's questions. I have learned so much from you and after going into the archives I have a gleaned a wealth of knowledge that I know will help our family greatly as we start our new school year.

His daughter,
RTR has a semester study on the Human Body which includes eating properly, exercise, ... ed (from a Christian perspective) etc.

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Re: Health

Unread post by kellybell »

Lori wrote exactly what I was planning on writing so I won't repeat her. So, yes, the subjects are covered, but you've also got time for elaborating on them (or on any subject that you wish).

For health, we just discuss the basics (toothbrushing, handwashing, getting sleep, good nutrition). Since these are daily topics, there are plenty of opportunities to discuss them.

You can also look in the library for videos and books. With light Fridays, it's easy to take a field trip.

Also, our kids have taken a KidPower personal safety course. I don't know if it's a national organization or just a local one. It was two two-hour evenings (or something like that) for kids grades 1 to 5 or so (I can't exactly remember). The instruction is very solid.

One nice thing about MFW in general is that it is not so demanding that your family has no time for extra studies (or extra hobbies).

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 5:30 pm
I also enjoy the "Yellow Dyno" videos and books. They have catchy tunes that the kids can remember for a long time.
Kelly, wife to Jim since 1988, mom to Jamie (a girl, 1994), Mary (1996), Brian (1998) and Stephanie (2001).

Re: Health

Unread post by cbollin »

In "health" what doesn't get covered in academic things that Lori mentioned, we just deal with in life ---washing hands, cough, etc... go to the dentist regularly, cleaning the kitchen, don't eat the cat food, don't eat that from the floor. and so on and so on and so on. Trying to make a nutritious meal, wash your hair, play outside, etc. etc etc

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 6:05 pm
I had mixed reaction to that Yellow Dyno tape. The Dial 911 song is nice. One song, GOMF (Get out of my face) – I don’t know. I liked the premise that it’s better to be safe that polite, but I don’t think that being rude is helpful either. Nice and catchy tune if you like line dancing! I just want you to know about that song in advance.

We sorta liked the one from Twin Sisters, called Safety. We really liked the Check First song. Before I go outside, what should I do, CHECK FIRST. It was really helpful for my special needs kids. I think my library carries that CD. It wasn't a perfect one either. Oh well.

We liked some of the coloring books at the fire stations to help with fire safety for this age. Get them involved in knowing how to change batteries on your smoke detectors.

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Unread post by Poohbee »

Posted: Mon Aug 13, 2007 3:26 pm
I wrote about adding information about safety in the MFWK Kangaroo unit. Here is the link to that thread:

The book I used, Officer Buckle and Gloria, is a delightful picture book, and I think it could be used as a great intro. to talk about safety with many different age levels.

Also, our local library asked a fireman to bring a fire truck for the kids to look at for an afterschool program one day. He brought some activity books about fire safety with him that he gave to each of the kids. So, if you ask at your local firehouse, they may have some educational resources that they'll give you for free that would be great to use to talk about safety.
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Unread post by scmlg »

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 5:45 pm
We have found some great safety/stranger videos at our library. There were two different ones, with different approaches even.
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Re: Safety

Unread post by RachelT »

Posted: Mon Dec 31, 2007 9:54 pm
We just read a Berenstain Bears book about strangers from the library that was pretty good.

Posted: Sun Jul 20, 2008 10:36 pm
Safety - Cub Scouts has great information and lessons to teach about personal safety, staying away from strangers, etc.

Health - we talked about food groups and healthy eating during V-v-vegetables in K and maybe some other units

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Health and Nutrition?

Unread post by sarajoy »

doubleportion wrote:I was wondering when health and nutrition are introduced in MFW. Did we miss it in the earlier years, since this is our first year with MFW?
Posted: Wed Jul 16, 2008 9:53 pm
As for nutrition, there was a little bit here and there along the way in K with the v-v-vegetable unit, some senses anatomy with the u-u-us unit. I don't recall any that stood out to me in 1st.

We'll be starting Adventures soon, also. I think there is some anatomy in the science encyclopedia in Adv.

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Re: Health and Nutrition?

Unread post by mamaofredheads »

Posted: Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:49 am
There are a few book basket suggestions in RTR for books on nutrition. One was a cookbook called Healthy Kids (I think). We checked it out at the library & liked it so I bought it on Amazon. It is also mentioned some in The Body Book. For us, conversations concerning nutrition seemed to come about naturally as we worked through the human body study in RTR.
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Re: Health and Nutrition?

Unread post by courthart246 »

Posted: Thu Jul 17, 2008 8:49 am
I found a neat book that I'm going to do with my ds this year for health and nutrition, and it goes along with Crystal's idea of instructing kids in the kitchen. It's called The Healthy Body Cookbook.

Each chapter covers an area of health or nutrition, such as heart, blood, muscles, bones, teeth, digestive system, food guide pyramid, exercise, etc. Then you cook foods that have to do with that subject. The recipes are included.

I thought this would be a fun way to do some health once a week or every other week and also allow my ds to do some cooking. Because MFW is so complete I really couldn't see adding a whole health curriculum or something. This seems to be the right thing for us and will be fun too. You can find the book at christian book or Amazon. Just an idea.
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Health and ECC

Unread post by buckhome »

I found this website that is very kid oriented at . If you click on the Teacher/parent link you can browse lesson plans for different Health topics. There aren't many, but I decided to use the Dental Health plans and there are 11 lessons (11 days worth of talking about dental health). The kids can use the kids link to play the games and the parents use the parent link to teach the lessons and get the plans. It's totally free too!

So then I went on my library's website and I found these books:
I lost my tooth in Africa / by Penda Diakité ; illustrated by Baba Wagué Diakike a
Throw your tooth on the roof : tooth traditions from around the world / Selby B. Beeler ; illustrated by G. Brian Karas

I love the library! I haven't read these books, but I am eager to see them. I also added a few others about dental care too. Anyway, I hope this helps someone else...the website is definitely worth checking out if you are adding health as a subject to your school day!
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Unread post by Andrea »

Posted: Fri Jul 25, 2008 3:04 pm
For teaching health topics we have used the information on

The site covers topics such as: dealing with feelings, staying healthy, keeping fit, foods, recipes, everyday illnesses and injuries (bug bites, flu, viruses), how the body works (with little videos to teach different body systems/organs). You can print off the short pieces, find a matching library book and have a pretty nice health class!
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Occupational Education

Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

Heidi07 wrote:Hi, does anyone have recommendations for occupational education in a concrete way for MFW K and 1. We live in Washingotn and it is a required topic.
Hi Heidi!
I took a "homeschooling qualification class" at Spokane Falls Community College. (I didn't know anyone in the area and needed to get plugged in.) Here's my notes on Occupational Education from that class:

Natural Learning in Occupational Education
*Anything job-related, naturally fits into instruction
*Daily chores
*Show them how real jobs are done by letting them see and experience what you do for a living
*Auto mechanics: Let them help service the car.
*Visit an orchard or work in one. Learn to cook and bake. Make bread. You are doing fractions and chemical reactions.
*Live on a farm? Change sprinklers, feed animals, mow lawns. Help harvest the crops and preserve foods by canning, freezing or dehydrating. Weed the garden and classify what you pull up.
*Live in a city? Summer yard work can make money.
*Have your child make something they can sell. Do you hate door-to-door salesmen? Have your child sell something to the salesman. One bought $30 worth of stationery.
*Take a trip to the post office and ask for a field trip. How does the mail get from here to there?
*Watch a repairman when he comes to the house and ask if your child can ask questions.
*Help Habitat for Humanity or find an older person to adopt. Scrape, paint, and trim a house for someone in need.

Some of those things are for older children, but some can easily be adapted for younger kids, too. My dd is loving learning to needlepoint on beginner sets and sew simple felt pieces with a plastic needle. Cooking is always good. My dd also chats with (interrogates) everyone -- clerks at the store, the hair dresser, etc. That all counts. It can be very informal, especially at a young age. HTH. And don't forget the fire dept and police station, like Julie mentioned. My brother is a firefighter (in Washington, too) and they LOVE for kids to come visit!
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Health and physical education

Unread post by meagabby »

erikdeb wrote:We will be doing Adv next year, and ds will be of reporting age, so I was reading up on the state laws. I see health and physical education listed as required subjects. Any ideas on how to do them and document them? Dh and I are not sporty people, so we are especially nervous about the phy ed part. (We are in MN)

We aren't in MN, but our homeschool group that we report to requires PE.

We count any activity that our dc participates in that requires a good amount of motion (dance, tennis, soccer, etc)as class time. We count 3 days a week, so if we have a practice or class only twice, we can make it up with a walk around the neighborhood.

If they aren't involved in anything, you could check out kid exercise videos from the library. They aren't all excercise-y, but it does get the bodies moving and kids love videos. My youngest loves Elmo so we can pop in Elmocise and she participates which makes the older ones love doing it. Our group says anything with direction, just so long as it's not "go play in the backyard" kind of direction. KWIM?

As for health, you probably discuss healthy food choices in normal conversation while preparing meals and snacks. I remember my dh asking my why the dc were telling him which were nutritious snack choices in 1st and 3rd grade. :-) It was simply part of our conversation when we chose a snack.

Hopefully someone will chime in that lives in your state. :)
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Re: Health and physical education

Unread post by KellyinPA »

In ADV you will study the human body and that could very easily be documented for health as well as science.

We didn't have to document anything this year (we will next year, it's 8yo in PA) but if I did I would have just read them some library books on "health" type topics appropriate for a second grader. My boys attend a Wednesday evening program at our church (Olympians anyone? :)) where they play a gym class type game every week. I always counted that when my olders were homeschooled.

It doesn't take long (at least it didn't for me :) ) to begin seeing many opportunities in every day life that you can document as "school" for the authorities. Hope this helps some.
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Re: Health and physical education

Unread post by Julie in MN »

The public schools cover this very broadly, and so can we. Schools count bus safety coloring pages as health and games as physical education. Grades are usually "satisfactory" or "needs improvement."

I've always felt we have it well covered with things like:
- co-op phy ed
- homeschool ski days
- monthly bowling with local homeschoolers
- soccer team
- sometimes we read a little about the rules of an activity such as bowling or soccer
- summer swimming lessons
- my son had a child's membership at the Y for a year, which was like $39 instead of hundreds of dollars for a family
- another homeschool family in our neighborhood took a bike ride or walk every single day after lunch
- we have a chin-up bar in our living room doorway & ds does plenty of random exercises
- I write random activities underneath my MFW grid, such as minigolf, a playdate in the park, or sledding

I believe the purpose of phy ed is to make sure kids are being encouraged to be active, and to introduce kids to lots of ways that they might enjoy it, in hopes that they find one that suits them. I wouldn't worry about anything formal unless you feel your particular child needs work on these goals.

Posted Wed Aug 04, 2010 2:11 pm by Julie in MN
  • If you want a book on health for book basket or something, ABeka has some general health texts.
  • Total Health also has one for about grades 7-8, as well as the high school one that MFW uses.
  • HSLDA is a good resource for finding curriculum for specific subjects.
  • Cathy Duffy provides reviews of homeschool curriculum:  
But I've usually found that adding too much means that something else doesn't get done...

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Re: Health and physical education

Unread post by RachelT »

Hi! Some things that we have done to for this area are:
- weekly homeschool gymnastics class
- soccer, baseball, basketball teams
-Tae Kwon Do, my ds is doing this now and he goes 2 x a week and it's really helping him with coordination, following directions, showing respect, etc.
-nature walks, walking the dog around the block, bicycle or scooter time, etc.
- co op "playground games" class, with lots of kids (games we can't play with just the 3 of us)
- swimming lessons
- family ski trips

Have fun!
Rachel, wife to Doug ~ 1995, mom to J (17) and B (15)
MFW K (twice), 1st (twice), Adv., ECC, & CtG 2006-2010,
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physical education

Unread post by cbollin »

karlafoisy wrote:I brought my kids to a friends' today. Their kids wanted to play four-square with my kids. (A game involving bouncing a ball out of your "territory" while only letting it bounce in your territory one time.) I realized quickly that my kids have no concept of "game rules" and they have NO coordination for that type of thing. Of course, they are outside alot and climb/swing/run/etc, but not usually in cooperative play/team play.

So, my question is...what types of activities do you suggest to build some of those coordination skills/understanding of game rules/team play/etc?

By the way, we live in a real rural area, so there is no opportunity for local team sports.
You might take a look at

for some ideas and lesson plans that do stretches and movement, and helps for learning about sports, and then lists typical group fun games.

I know a lot of times my kids learned those things from church fun activities, and other group setting with some recreation as part of fellowship and fun.

then play 4 square at home too... mom and dad get involved.
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Re: physical education

Unread post by Poohbee »

Hi Karla!

I had similar concerns about PE, so I purchased the book Home School Family Fitness, by Bruce Whitney, Ph.D. However, I noticed that our library has it, as well. It has suggestions and rules for lots of different games and sports that you can teach your kids, for both indoors and outdoors. We've enjoyed many of the games in that book, and it helps me teach the kids games that I never played myself when I was growing up, such as four-square. :-) Just an idea for you. :-)
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Re: physical education

Unread post by momtogc »

There are only three of us in my family so not enough for a team but here are some things we do for fun outside.

We play badminton in the driveway as a family. We do not have a net (yet) but we hit the birdie to each other. It's fun, it builds up some strength and takes coordination. We make up our own "rules". Sometimes my dd and I will be on a side; dh will hit it to one of us, and we each take turns hitting it back to him. Other times we hit in a round - I hit it to dh, he hits it to dd, she hits it to me. It's not a true badminton game but we have fun with it. We buy our badminton set at Target. You can also buy volleyball or croquet sets there.

Sometimes we play HORSE with the basketball and goal. Your kids are probably familiar with this game, but if not I can explain it. Another fun thing is to play hopscotch. There are rules but no teams.

Jumping rope takes coordination and is very good exercise. A friend of mine has her two hs children in a jump rope class. Their instructor says that 10 minutes of jumping rope is equivalent to 30 minutes of jogging. It takes stamina to jump rope for 10 minutes. You could probably find a book with jump rope "games".

My daughter likes to ride her scooter. To make it more fun, I draw an "obstacle" course on the driveway for her to maneuver (our driveway is verrry long - this could perhaps be done in the street with caution and adult supervision). Sometimes we have a friend over and they take turns riding through the course. I time them with a stopwatch (on my cell phone) and they compete (in a friendly way) for the best times.

If you are interested in starting a homeschool P.E. group, I know of a lady in Oklahoma who authored a book called Physical Education for Children Schooled at Home First-Sixth Grades. It is available from her website (P.E. is Fun) She has a number of group games in her book.

This may not be the type of information you were looking for but I hope it helps you think of things for your children to do. :-)
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Re: physical education

Unread post by NJCheryl »

Are there any times at church where there are group type activities and games? I know at our church we have a Wednesday night program "Character Power" that includes a gym time. If not, maybe you could start something.

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Re: physical education

Unread post by my3boys »

We bought Homeschool Family Fitness this year too. It is what most homeschool companies suggest for Phys-Ed. We do a lot of sports, but I found we were missing out on specific games and skills that would be taught in a school phys-ed class - skipping, balance activities, exercising for health, etc.

It looks really good. The year is broken down into daily suggestions to make it easier. It's something that we can use every year of homeschooling - so definitely worth the purchase.
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Unread post by Cyndi (AZ) »

ElizabethC wrote:We live in WA. In the WA state laws it just says out of the 11 required subjects that must be included in the curriculum:
  • reading, writing, spelling, language, math, science, social studies, history, health, occupational education {not sure what this is either}, art and music appreciation.
They didn't do health all year long in PS, they did do health 1/2 of year. They learned first aid {CPR, etc}, they did a section on cancers, and heart rates.

I noticed that it isn't in the MFW curriculum {only in the HS elective sections} should I supplement with that elective or find a curriculum class some place else? If so, does anyone have any suggestions for that? Thanks in advance!

I took a continuing education course in homeschooling through a local community college in WA State a few years ago. My dd was not compulsory age yet, so I don't have experience in this, but this is what I was told:

Health before High School consists of keeping track of doctor's visits, dental visits, etc., and having your child be involved in their own treatment. They will know they should have a yearly physical and twice a year dental cleanings. Learning basic first aid and hygiene habits (bathing, teeth brushing) are also included. You do not need a separate health curriculum.

Occupational Education can also be integrated into daily living. Record each hair appointment and talk to the stylist about what it takes to become a stylist, for example. Did the cashier need training before starting their job? Taking a babysitting course or having a babysitting job would qualify. In ECC, you will be studying about missionaries - maybe there is a missionary that your church supports that your dd could interview/write letters to? On another post, volunteering was mentioned - that counts.

It seems overly simple, but that is what I was told in 2006. I suggest finding a local homeschool support group and asking the other moms what they do for those requirements. That will help you find out where you can have the standardized test done next year, also. Are you close to Puyallup so that you can attend the WHO convention next month?
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Re: Health

Unread post by cbollin »


just letting you know.. Cyndia lived in WA state until a few months ago....

after reading Cyndi's post and re-reading the WA info on HSLDA's (Home School Legal Defense Association)'s website....

In addition to the real life activities that Cyndi mentioned, I wonder if some of the things in my state that count for health would cross over as well. That would be staying fit and active. I'm not seeing a specific PE requirement in your state. But would playing sports, or taking dance class, or walking, or swimming, or even, group exercise class be enough? selecting nutritious foods. being part of grocery shopping and meal planning. Sure sounds like enough. I'm sure that whatever she got in PS before met requirements, so, 8th grade year will be real life health and application. no curric needed.

Occupational Education - keep that to real life. One book I'm using in high school (not a MFW book) is the teen version of a book I used in college. What Color is your Parachute (teen version)? (that's one that can be repeated....)
before that, we just took notice of various jobs that were part of our daily lives. Then as her high school life continues, you'll add in work, community service, real life stuff.

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Re: Health

Unread post by s_duguid »

My state of NY also requires health. Over the last 3 years, we have covered communicable disease, nutrition, fire safety, bicycle safety, how to handle sharp objects, for example. Oh, we have also talked about internet safety, dental health, substance abuse (briefly) and skin issues (scabs, scars, warts.)

Our first year, we used ABEKA because they do have a health unit (was looking for one at convention), then our second year I picked up something through "rainbow." This year I used the book The Healthy Body Cookbook, teaching it in our co-op, also following up the various topics with library books, creating by own book basket. (Didn't realize that THBC is recommended in book basket for RtR ;) ) Author Alvin Silverstein has quite a good selection of books; you could check and see if your library carries any.

Still haven't decided what we will cover for next year. My superintendent has never balked at what I have proposed, but I am drying up a little for fresh ideas. To me "health" overlaps with science and physical education.

I think overall what my state is looking for is that over-arching, all-encompassing concept of how we keep ourselves safe and healthy.

You don't HAVE to purchase a curriculum, only if you are wanting guidance. After two years it was getting repetitious. You could take a field trip to a fire station, a local event on bicycle safety, talk about the rules of the road as you take a walk or ride your bike, talk about stranger safety. As your child ages, you will probably want to talk about how your body changes and how to take care of it (hygiene.)

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Re: Health

Unread post by ElizabethC »

Everything everyone posted DOES help out a lot! :)

Man you guys sure are helping to make this a smooth transition, and I truly appreciate it a lot! :)

I think we'll just incorporate some of the topics brought to the table here, that is a lot easier than I was making it! :) We already do some of these things with DD already, so it won't have to be another thing that is added to the plate, it already is!

Whew... When we prayed for a smooth transition, I had no clue that it would be this smooth! I know there will be lumps and bumps but this entire new process for us is a whole new learning ball game and smooth is something that makes me feel calm!! LOL.
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