Who couldn’t use some contagious enthusiasm these days?! To get your dose, dive in to this podcast where Trish interviews Rachael Yunis, veteran homeschooling mom of three, science and math lover, and curriculum writer for Apologia.
Rachael gives practical and perhaps surprising advice for homeschoolers. Enjoy Rachael’s down-to-Earth attitude as she offers support, encouragement, and embracing the freedom that only homeschooling offers. Prepare to be inspired because, you never know…Rachael may just convince you that there is a little bit of a cheerleader in all of us!
Meet The Guest
Rachael Yunis is the Director of Apologia Science and Math departments. She has advanced degrees in molecular genetics/developmental biology and biomedical ethics. Rachael has over ten years’ experience in molecular genetic research and is published in multiple peer-reviewed scientific journals.
Rachael is a co-author of the Apologia textbook, Exploring Creation with Advanced Biology, 2nd Edition: The Human Body and author of the newest Young Explorer Series title, Exploring Creation with Earth Science. She has worked as an ethicist and science writer for the American Medical Association, the Alzheimer’s Association, and other national publications such as Association News.
In her spare time, Rachael volunteers as a member of local hospital ethics committees, gives talks on science, ethics, and homeschooling topics, provides foster care to infants waiting to be adopted into their forever families, and works globally to support orphaned children.
Together with her husband, Sam, a PhD. in mechanical and aerospace engineering and NASA engineer, they successfully homeschooled their children who now work in the aerospace and computer science industries. Sam is the technical editor of Exploring Creation with Earth Science.
Rachael believes that too often textbooks reduce knowledge to mere scientific facts without inspiring wisdom, purpose, and direction. In both Exploring Creation with Advanced Biology, 2nd edition: The Human Body and Exploring Creation with Earth Science, she interacts with the students asking them to reflect on what they are learning so that the science is internalized rather than memorized. It is her goal to help young minds fall in love with Creation as they see science not as a class, but rather as a journey of exploration, discovery, and wonder.
Show notes are below.
This episode is sponsored by Apologia. We are HUGE fans of Apologia and we both have used this curriculum throughout our homeschool journeys. This series is literally our favorite science series offered in the homeschool arena. We encourage you to spend a few minutes visiting their site to see why. Or visit our website to see the many articles we have written about it.
Quotes from Rachael Yunis
I do encourage hesitant parents, I encourage those who want to just jump in to go ahead and throw the cannon ball into the lake and experience homeschooling. I guarantee when you look back you won’t regret a second of it. It’s not easy. It’s not always fun, but it is incredible. The memories you make are wonderful and worthwhile.
I think we all come into it…we hear the “home’ and “school” and we think we have to do school at home. It is so easy to fall into that. I hear parents, when their kids are at home for certain periods of time saying ‘I can’t do this. This is impossible. How did you ever homeschool?’ Homeschool is a lifestyle. It is not doing somebody else’s preconceived notion of what school should be. It is freedom! When you truly homeschool, when you throw it all out the window and say no! It’s my home, my way, my rules, my calendar…you will never want to go back!
Do not make your calendar fit this curriculum. Make this curriculum fit your calendar.
[Science is] understanding the bigger picture of life and our world and our place in it.
I’ve always said science should not be a class, a curriculum that says “Here are the facts. Learn them for the test.” Science is a way to discover our world.
[Through science] you will see God’s fingerprints everywhere. You will look at the world in complete awe. Science no longer is memorizing vocabulary words and facts and figures. It is just a way to understand the bigger picture and your unique place in it.
Math is a language. We all had to learn the alphabet. We had to learn how to put letters together to make words, to make sentences, to make a story. Math is the exact same way. You have to learn the numbers, the symbols, to be able to put them together in a numeric sentence that makes sense so that you can tell a story. It is just a way to explain concepts in a different language.
I think the authors of Apologia get it right. In every book I’ve read through and helped to get to print, time and time again, there is just this feeling of inspiring awe in a student and letting them know that this is just the beginning. Your real learning, the knowledge happens when this book closes and you step out into the world and you look up and you look around and you start to ask questions.
We can’t prepare them for everything. We have to be honest, they’re not going to remember everything. So the goal should be “I have given you a solid foundation.”
Take all your planner notes in pencil!
There is always something to learn.
Instill in your children you are created in the image of God and this world is an incredible place to live in and don’t let anybody tell you any differently. You are special. You are unique. You are here for a reason. Go out and make you path in this world. I am here for you! I am your biggest cheerleader.
Nobody cares about the success of your children like you do. (Trish)
We don’t give ourselves enough credit as homeschool moms but I do believe that we are changing the world one generation at a time as we reclaim those values and reclaim our focus on God our creator and focusing our children on the big picture. (Trish)
My goal is to raise a self-sufficient world-changing person who knows their place, can stand on their own two feet and can make a difference.
Resources mentioned in the podcast and other important links
Rachael Yunis’ books:
How to make homeschool fun!!
- Believe in Unicorns Coloring Book: 50+ Beautiful Mythical Unicorn Coloring Pages.
- Diamond Painting Kits for Adults, Teens or Tweens
- Our game recommendations on Amazon on how to make homeschool fun!
- Homeschool Road Trips and you can find us on our Facebook Page and Group
- Fun Printable Site: Only Passionate Curiosity
- Our snarky irreverent view of homeschooling: Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers