1.  Webinar August 2 on exiting public schools. Stay tuned!
Massachusetts Family Institute is partnering with MassHOPE and others to present a webinar exploring alternatives to public education. Currently scheduled for Sunday, August 2, from 7-9 p.m., this will take the form of a panel discussion, with live presentations by representatives of homeschooling and Christian schools for the first hour followed by questions from online viewers for the second.

Please keep this event in mind as you speak with friends who are looking to leave the public system. Meanwhile, another good resource is Public School Exit. They have a weekly webinar every Wednesday from 2-3 p.m. that will continue through the end of August.

Stay tuned for more details, to be shared in our next issue (July 29) and on our website.
2.  Speech and debate: get involved online and in person
From Brenda Storz, NCFCA State Representative for Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.Online free introduction to NCFCA Speech & Debate: Join us for a free one-week workshop that inspires Christian students to grow in their communication skills. Engage with leaders and experts for an exciting week including 15 interactive workshops. New families and veterans alike will find these workshops helpful. Visit ncfca.org/summit/ to learn more and sign up for this free online event July 27-31. For questions or to learn more, please contact Brenda Storz at

Affordable NCFCA Speech and Debate Online Summer Training: For Christian families wishing to challenge their students to sharpen their speech and debate skills, join us for the week-long NCFCA Online Intensive August 3-7, which offers quality speech and debate training practice at a price you can afford. Beginning and advanced students will master new skills on their way to becoming confident and gracious communicators. Cost ranges from $50 per student for two days of speech only or $100 per student for three days of debate only, to $150 per student for five days of speech and debate. Visit ncfca.org/intensive/  to learn more and sign up. For questions or to learn more, please contact Brenda Storz at 

NCFCA is the leading Christian speech and debate league. We train Christian students to communicate truth with wisdom and grace. “To me, NCFCA is one of the most important organizations on the planet. When I attend an NCFCA event and experience the excellence of the teenage competitors as well as the superb work being done behind the scenes by parents and volunteers, my hope for the future is restored.” (Andrew Pudewa, Founder of Institute for Excellence in Writing)New Speech & Debate Club now forming! Are you feeling the weight of the privilege and responsibility of training your students in the desperately-needed ability to think critically and communicate effectively in a manner that glorifies God and seeks to view life issues through God’s eyes of truth? Club families plan to meet Friday afternoons 1:30-5:30 in or around Andover (as per facility availability due to Covid with the potential necessity to meet online). Parents work together to lead their students in a variety of speech events (students ages 12-18), junior speech events (students ages 8 and up), Lincoln Douglas value debate (ages 12-18), and/or team policy debate (ages 12-18). For questions or to learn more, please contact Brenda Storz at storzlis@gmail.com.

3.  Zoo Church Academy!
Zoo Church Academy is offering full- and part-time zoology classes for homeschooled students. With the way the world is now, a lot of parents will be transitioning to homeschool. We are here to make it easier with full-time school, adding training in zoology and botany to your own home school curriculum. This is the school for you if you are passionate about wildlife. You will accomplish your daily curriculum and also learn how to work with exotic animals and agriculture every day. This school will set up all future zoologists for success. Even if you are not planning for a life working with animals it will still be an experience of a lifetime. The only school like this, we truly are one of a kind! Go to our website for more info, or call/email with questions: (978)779-8988, AnimalAdventuresAcademy@gmail.com, or info@zoo.church.

4.  For-fee advertising
The MassHOPE Messenger is a biweekly e-newsletter that is sent free to approximately 2500 mailboxes. Unfortunately, it is not free to distribute. This cost increases each year, and MassHOPE has limited funds. Therefore we charge a nominal fee of $20 for unsolicited submissions from individuals, and from most organizations or groups unaffiliated with MassHOPE, who wish to advertise their for-fee goods or services. Items will ordinarily run in two consecutive issues. Note: Normally an ad will be limited to one round (two issues) per quarter. Contact Anne Smith at volunteer@masshope.org. for specifics.5.  Christian clarinet lessons – home studio and online!From David Knizewski:

I am an orchestral clarinetist, K-12 music teacher, and home school dad offering Christian clarinet lessons to students ages 10 and older. I have a passion to help students enjoy making music for the glory of God and offer lessons which are fun and inspiring!

I currently offer lessons through TakeLessons.com, an online company which connects students to teachers in their areas. I teach in-person lessons at my home studio in Amesbury, and I can teach online lessons to students from anywhere in the world! Taking online lessons is a good option for students who want to avoid traveling long distances, or who want a safe alternative during the COVID-19 pandemic. I have been background-checked by TakeLessons, and all booking and financial management takes place through their secure website. If you would like to view my profile and set up lessons, please see my page here.
If you are interested in learning the art of clarinet playing from a Christian perspective, or if you have any questions, feel free to contact me anytime by messaging me through my TakeLessons page, or by phone or e-mail at (540) 244-0000 or davidknizewski@gmail.com.

6.  Legal issues Keeping an eye on the Massachusetts legislature.
Regarding annual testing and the federal coronavirus waiver:HSLDA wants to clear up any confusion that homeschoolers may have.

7.  A bevy of materials, offers, and helps for you and new
My Father’s World materials. Includes offer of two free activity packs.
Notgrass History web-based curriculum. Free trial.
Free language arts lessons from IEW.
Getting started, with free access throughout May.
The importance of Christian homeschool organizations for homeschool freedom.
YouTube with Dr. Kathy Koch: Having Conversations about Today’s Tough Stuff
Remember Adventures in Odyssey? Free 28-day trial.
Family activities from the Billy Graham Library.

8.  Variety of interesting sites suggested by the Heritage Foundation
Science, engineering, and building projects and lessons from The League of Young Inventors.

Exciting free courses from Hillsdale College in literature, politics, history, and economics.

From Joy Hakim: DIY lessons on topics such as the human body, Magellan’s travels, the story of Elizabeth Jennings Graham, and plagues from previous eras.

Students can explore the remains of Athens’ ancient Acropolis, Parthenon, Temple of Zeus, and more in these virtual tours.

Free online language learning materials in English, Spanish, French and German, from Lingoda.

More free language learning from Duolingo, with 23 languages.

Explore Shakespeare with Folger Shakespeare Library, which is offering free access to seven full-cast audio recordings of plays such as HamletRomeo and Juliet, and Othello. The library is also providing free access to their video recording of Macbeth. These resources are available free of charge through July 1.

Minecraft  has released its Education Edition (free through June 2020) to help children at home. The program provides 50 lessons, STEM, and project based learning activities. Using the platform, students can visit the international space station, explore the human eye, tour D.C.’s most memorable sites, and more.

Core Knowledge offers a vast array of resources. Their Language Arts, History and Geography, and Science curricula are available for free.

TouchMath offers free downloads of TouchMath Workbooks.

9.  Browsing corner for vets and newbies
How To (and How Not To) Homeschool During COVID-19 by John Stonestreet by John Stonestreet‘Most Rewarding Thing You Can Do’: Homeschool Experts Offer Hope to Parents in COVID-19 School Shutdowns by Kayla RootHome-school family feels the impact of social distancing, offers advice to other familiesby Tiffany Kafer5 Tips From Homeschool Veterans For Parents New To Learning At Home by Laura Isensee

10. The MassHOPE Educator ID CardEducator IDs are now available for benefits such as potential discounts at retailers. Order them from our website HERE.

11.  Are you on our mailing lists?
To those who have been recently added to our email list through our website: if you would also like to be added to our “snail mail” list to receive information (such as our print newsletter) via the U.S. Postal Service, please send your full name and complete mailing address to newsletter@masshope.org.

12. Your news items wanted
Do you know of an event or activity in or near Massachusetts that would edify or interest the homeschool community? Email Anne Smith at volunteer@masshope.organd we will review it for possible inclusion in the MassHOPE Messenger. 

13. Remember to “Like” MassHOPE on Facebook“Like” MassHOPE’s Facebook page: facebook.com/MassHOPE?fref=ts. You’ll be encouraged in your homeschooling journey and will receive all updates for upcoming events.

14. Do you receive The Voice of HOPE?MassHOPE publishes a quarterly print newsletter, The Voice of HOPE. In addition to announcements you might also find in the Messenger, we provide three or four full-length articles on a variety of homeschooling topics. If you would like to add your name, please send your name and “snail mail” address to newsletter@masshope.org.

15. Support MassHOPE through AmazonSmileDo you shop at Amazon? If you shop through AmazonSmile, Amazon will make a donation to MassHOPE! If you’re not already signed up, you can do so more easily than ever. To start supporting our organization, simply click this link, which is unique to MassHOPE: http://smile.amazon.com/ch/04-HYPERLINK “http://smile.amazon.com/ch/04-3220412”3220412. That’s all! From then on, when – and only when – you enter the Amazon website through amazonsmile.com,Amazon will automatically donate 0.5% of the purchase price of eligible products to MassHOPE. Thank you for supporting the work of your Christian state homeschool organization!

16. How to submit Box Tops for convention savings
You can earn free or reduced admission to the MassHOPE conventions AND support MassHOPE at the same time! Submissions for the 2020 convention are now closed, but you can start getting credit toward the 2021 convention. Want to submit Box Tops for convention credit but aren’t sure how to proceed? Just click on this link: https://masshope.org/boxtops/.