Tuesday, December 16, 2014

UHSG 1st Annual Winter Celebration

Homeschoolers in the KMC met together to celebrate the winter season. We made seasonal crafts and shared yummy treats.  Music, friends and fun was enjoyed by all in attendance.




Monday, December 8, 2014

KMC/ Ramstein Homeschoolers Hit the Ice

With the winter season setting in, United Homeschoolers of Germany decided take time and enjoy a little ice skating. Kaiserslautern ON ICE is an indoor ice rink open during the winter months for all to enjoy. Homeschoolers of all ages tried their hand at gliding across the rink. Some of us were more successful than others, but we all had fun!









Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Ramstein Homeschoolers Experience the Science Center

United Homeschoolers of Germany had a fantastic day exploring Dynamikum Science Center in Pirmasens. Located about 40 mins south of Ramstein Air Base, Dynamikum is a science museum for people of all ages. Hands on activities let the you experiment with various scientific principles. English explanations ensure you're learning while have fun! We'll definitely be back here again.







Friday, October 24, 2014

Mom's Night of Improv

UHSG's Mom's Night Out was an extra special and fun night! The very talented Amy Smolinski gave us Intro to Improv acting class! Amy teaches theater classes for KMC Onstage and offers homeschooling theater classes. After a potluck dinner, she guided the hard working Mommas through the art of improvisation. It was fun evening full of laughs!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

KMC Homeschoolers Explore at the Pumpkin Patch

United Homeschoolers of Germany headed over to Sunshine Pumpkin Patch for a day of fun on the farm. Sunshine is a local farm and homeschoolers were able to see cows, horses, pig, sheep, chicken and many more animals up close. After a trailer ride to the pumpkin patch, kids were able to take home a pumpkin of their choosing. Our tour ended perfectly with warm baked goods and hot apple cider.










Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Policy for Selecting New Liaisons

  • Open liaison positions will be posted before each UHSG meeting.
  • When it becomes known that a position will be open in the future, it will be announced to the group.
  • Members interested in being nominated for the open positions should make themselves thoroughly acquainted with the Liaison’s responsibilities and read the Code of Conduct that every UHSG Liaison is required to uphold.
  • Nominations will be accepted for open positions after the announcement. Nominees will notify the UHSG Administration Liaison of their interest. No campaigning please. .
  • Voting will take place at the next monthly meeting.
  • Liaison nominees will be given 5 minutes at the meeting to make a presentation stating why they would like the position.
  • Current liaisons (absentee vote permitted) and all members present at the meeting will vote on all open liaison positions.

Policy for Inviting Others to UHSG Events

Types of Events Posted on UHSG
  • UHSG Community Events – These UHSG events are organized and promoted by the Liaisons for its members and the community at large. For example, a performance of the Annual UHSG Theater Production or a UHSG Community Service Project. Members are free to invite friends, family, and other interested groups.
  • UHSG Sponsored Events and Classes – Liaisons will organize these events and classes as a benefit of UHSG membership. Park days, mom’s night out, parties, etc. are sponsored events that UHSG will not promote to the community at large, but individual members are free to invite friends and family in order to encourage others who enjoy these kinds of events to join our group. However, Enrichment Day Classes and the Annual UHSG Theater Production will be open to UHSG members only for participation.
  • Personal Events – These are individual members’ events/classes. Members are free to invite UHSG members to their personal events so long as the event is open to all UHSG members. Refer to Class Sharing Guidelines for more information.
  • Non-UHSG Community Events – Members are free to post information regarding events happening in the community which homeschooling families tend to find interesting. Obviously personal judgment is involved in determining acceptable events, and the admins will remove posts determined not appropriate. Members who repeatedly post inappropriate events will be asked to stop and brought through the mediation process if necessary.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Class Sharing Guidelines

Class Sharing:

Offering Classes on UHSG Facebook Group Page and BlogSpot

For any homeschooling parent looking to offer classes through UHSG, here are our guidelines on how to do so and some things you should take into consideration when putting a class together:

  1. All classes posted on the UHSG group page, forums, and website that are not a specific UHSG/Enrichment Day class should not have UHSG listed in the class description. This is a class that you as an individual are offering to the homeschooling community.
  2. Fees for the classes should be limited to the exact amount it costs each child to participate in the class. If you are purchasing bulk supplies, list a general cost for each child and once supplies are purchased, divide the leftover funds between each child and return that amount to the family.  If you are charging for your expertise in a field of study, then you must personally obtain a business license through the German government. UHSG is not responsible for helping you through this process nor are we liable for any financial issues this may bring upon you.
  3. As a diverse homeschooling support group, UHSG strives to promote opportunities inclusive of all homeschooling families. A preferred but not required method for our members to sign-up for your class is to create a sign up through SignUpGenius.com and to list the class description on the Facebook Group page. In the class description you will direct members to the SignupGenius.com site to sign-up. This will provide a first come/first serve atmosphere to fill the available spaces for your class.
  4. To help avoid as many issues as possible, your class listing should include the following:
    • Class description and expected outcomes
    • Guidelines for participating in class, homework expectations, supply list (don’t be shy, add a roll of toilet paper, bottle of hand soap, roll of paper towels, etc. as these consumables can become expensive), and any costs/fees with details of what these are applied to
    • Timeline for the class, location, and contact information for facilitator
    • Class size and/or age restrictions
    • Parent contribution expectations
    • Rules for your home or class location
    • Drop-off/Pick-up policy
    • A small blurb about yourself/why you’re offering the class
    • SignUpGenius.com link to sign up
  5. To protect yourself, it is strongly advised that you have a parent volunteer remain in your home or class location with you at all times. You may choose to do this on a rotation with the parents.
  6. If you are having a personal problem with a parent and are unable to resolve the issue but need a resolution, please see UHSG’s policy on handling situations between members. If the parent is not a member of UHSG, then UHSG cannot force them to be a part of the mediation process and you will have to resort to resolving it on your own.
  7. If you want to host a class but not in your home and are unable to do so during UHSG’s Enrichment Day, the KMCC Party Room is often available during the day for you to reserve your time-slot. The room divides into two rooms so if two parents want to offer classes at the same time, you would be able to do so.  Visit the KMCC to reserve your space.
  8. If you want to list your class on our public site, http://unitedhomeschoolersofgermany.blogspot.de/ , please contact UHSG at unitedhomeschoolersofgermany@gmail.com . For the public site, we suggest a general class description with directions for interested families to join us on Facebook for more information. For security reasons, we will not list direct contact information on our public blog.
  9. See the example below if this is your first time offering a class and are unsure of how to put together a class listing.





Example of a Class Listing
Reading Enrichment
Facilitator: Your Name (youremail@gmail.com)
•    I am offering this class because I have facilitated this same kind of class at a co-op for two years, and my children enjoyed the class. Since we’ve moved here, they have wanted to have the class here. 
    
Time: 1:00 P.M. – 2:20 P.M. every Wednesday from September 10 - November 12

Location: My Home, Cool Village, Germany

This class is open to children K-4th Grades, Class Size: 10 Children. Parents please come in with your children when dropping them off and if you are not required to stay, please arrive ten minutes prior to the end of class to pick them up.

Rules for expected behavior and house rules will be discussed at the beginning of the first class. For those not required to stay, please expect to be present the first class to go over these rules, get to know me,  and see what a typical day will be like.

Class Description:
The idea of this class is to encourage the love of reading through classroom readings and hands on activities that allow the children to connect the different aspects of a book to things in their lives.

Class Supplies:
Children should bring their own crayons, pencils, glue sticks, and scissors. There will be a sign-up sheet the first day for additional supply contributions (i.e. toilet paper, paper towels, and hand soap)

Homework:
The students will be required to do book reports in order to build their “perfect sandwich” throughout the year. The book reports will be age appropriate and the book report forms will be tailored differently for the younger children. In addition, children will keep a reading log that will enable them to earn prizes from Betty Bookworm’s Reading Rewards.

Parent Contribution:
Parents of children at the Kindergarten level must be available to assist their children with crafting activities. There will be one additional parent helper for every class on a rotating schedule.

Cost:
$10/Child - Money will be used for crafts and small rewards, leftover funds will be equally distributed per child and returned to the families

Monday, August 25, 2014

Not Back to School Party 2014

A whopping seventeen families signed-up for our annual Not Back to School Party! Kids ranging in age from toddlers to high-schoolers took turns knocking down pins.








Saturday, July 5, 2014

United Homeschoolers of Germany Leadership Code of Conduct

In order to accomplish our mission, leaders will abide by the following code of conduct. Leaders understand that their behavior both public and private reflect on the entire group. Those not abiding by the code of conduct will be removed from leadership.
  • Leaders will act with honesty and integrity. Leaders will not engage in deception or disingenuous behavior.
  • Leaders will treat everyone with respect and courtesy. Leaders will not engage in harassment of any sort.
  • Leaders will maintain appropriate confidentiality about dealings within the group.
  • Leaders will at all times behave in a way that upholds the values, integrity and good reputation of the group.
  • Leaders will not speak disparagingly of others or other groups in the community.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Ramstein Area Pools

Join us for homeschool swim. Here are web links to the pools we frequent.

Kaiserslautern Pool


Monte Mare in Kaiserslautern
Monte Mare is an indoor/outdoor pool open all year round. Inside there is a slide, an inner tube slide  and a wave pool.




Rodenbach Pool
This is an outdoor pool open only in the summer. There is a slide, baby pool and lap pool. Snacks can be purchased. Beyond the pools are several very large grassy areas for picnics and play.



Azur in Ramstein
Azure is an indoor/outdoor pool open all year round. There are slides both inside and out and a diving board, high dive and platform dive. There are lap pools and baby pools both inside and out. Snacks can be purchased and food can be eaten on the grass outdoors and in the basement inside.

Directions: From the Ramstein AFB.
  • Exit the base and take the first exit on both of the round-A-bouts.
  • Turn left after driving past the pool.
  • Take a quick left to get to the parking lot.


Natural Pool in Landstuhl

Directions:
  • This pool is located near the traffic circle which heads toward Kindsbach in the village of Landstuhl.
  • Head toward Landstuhl at the circle.
  • Turn left into the parking lot just past he school. You will see a large sign for CUBO and probably miss the small sign for the pool.
  • The parking lot and entrance for CUBO and the pool are one in the same.
  • Enter the building, go up the stairs, pay and then head out the back of the building to the pool.




Wolfstein
This is an outdoor pool located near a campground. Campers get free entrance to the pool which is large, contains a playground and a grassy area. Divers can plunge into the cold water from boards or a platform.

Ramstein Area Playgrounds - Park Days

The Ramstein area is filled with hidden treasure parks. Whether you meet with the group on park days each week, or venture there with just the family, the kids are sure to have fun. Here are our favorite meeting places for park days.


Vogelwoog in Kaiserslautern

Located on a small lake near the Toys 'R Us in Kaiserslautern, Vogelwoog park has trails and wooden hideouts for kids to play.



Directions:
  • Go through Opal Circle
  • Exit onto Merkurstr and drive past the Toys R’ Us and keep going until just before the road takes a 90 degree turn to the right
  • Turn left on Vogelwoogstr until you reach the lake


Seewoog in Miesenbach

Woog means lake in the local German dialect. Therefore, the Seewoog park in Miesenbach is located on a lake. There is a small play area and a large grassy area. The biergarten serves beer and typical German snack food - pretzles, brats, etc. Trails circle the lake and continue onto the nearby village of Mackenbach.

Directions: From the Ramstein AFB.
  • Exit the base and take the first exit on both of the round-A-bouts. (go past the Azur pool). 
  • Turn left at the yellow sign toward Kottweiler-Schwanden. You will soon head into the village of Miesenbach. 
  • After entering the village of Miesenbach turn right at the green sign that says Seewoog. It is about the third right. 
  • Go to the end of the road and just past where you see the white circle sign with the red circle around the outside. 
  • Park there. 
  • The seewoog (lake) and play area should be on your left. We usually meet on the far side of the lake (opposite the play area) so the kids can play in the woods and big grassy area.


Donnely Park, Ramstein Base

Donnely Park is near the schools on the Ramstein AFB. There are several large fields near the playground, and the play area has lots of climbing equipment, a big slide and a cherry tree that produces fruit in July.

- Directions coming soon -

City Center Park in Weilerbach

(GPS Address - Mackenbacherstr 2, Weilerbach)

Near the main stoplight intersection in Weilerbach, ducks and ducklings are frequently spotted at this park. There is lots of climbing equipment including a newly installed zip line and a rock climbing mound. An open soccer field stands at the back of the park. Walking trails pass through the park and upon walking toward Mackenbach there is a schnitzle restaurant, in a log cabin on a hill, in the field - it's a fun place to bring guests from out of town.

Directions: From the stop light in the center of town in Weilerbach (Mackenbacherstr, Rummelstr, Hauptstr and Busenhubelstr)
  • Take Mackenbacherstr toward Mackenbach. 
  • There will be a parking lot on your right with a white sign with black letters that says some form of the word Nature or Natural. Park here!
  • Walk to the back of the parking lot and follow the trail to the left as short ways past the grinding wheel and pond to the playground equipment. 

Woods Park, Queidersbach


The woods in this area are filled with interesting rock formations and are quite hilly. There are actually two playgrounds in the woods and we typically stop at the second one we pass when following directions version 2. The kids enjoy the climbing equipment as well as exploring the woods and hills.

Directions:

Version 1 - Easy - Zum Falkenstein 1, Queidersbach
  • The address above is for the sportsplatz. 
  • Turn into the sportzplatz.
  • Drive past the soccer field on the left and two big parking lots on the right. 
  • Park just where the road turns into a walking trail.
  • Follow the trail and turn right a few feet after entering the woods. 
  • Head up the hill to the playground equipment.

Version 2 - For a 1/2 mile walk from where you park and a little adventure.
  • On the road that connects Bahn and Queidersbach there is a chapel/cemetery. It is closest to Queidersbach and on the right hand side just after leaving the village of Queidersbach. 
  • Drive up the hill to the second parking lot and park there.

Ohmbachsee, Schönenberg-Kübelberg



This playground has a big slide, swings, and best of all, a water pump that pumps water through a system of troughs that spill out onto sand. Be sure to bring towels, a change of clothes and sand toys. There is a tiny café next to the playground, and paddle boats can be rented for about 3.50 euro for 30 minutes.

Directions: Schönenberg-Kübelberg on Zaunwies strasse
  • Take the A6 towards Saarbrucken. 
  • Exit at Bruchmulbach/Miesau and make a left. You will see the Miesau Munnitions Depot on the left.
  • Stay on this road and follow it to Schonenberg/Kubelberg. 
  • Look for the brown Ombachsee sign on the right and make a right (about ¾ of a mile into town). 
  • As you are heading down a hill and out of Schonenberg, you will see the first parking are for Ombachsee. Do not park here. Keep going on this road until you see the village sign for Gries. 
  • Make a right after the small bridge and park in this lot. 
  • Once you have parked, make a left on the dirt path and follow it until you get to the park.
  • Wasserspielplatz will be on the left side of the lake. 

Park on Vogelweh, Pulaski

This playground has two play areas. The one in the front is better for smaller children. The one in the back has swings and more climbing equipment, but small children like it too. We typically meet in the back. There is also a large field.

- Directions coming soon -


Barenloch Park in Kindsbach

Sometimes called the frog park, this park has a zip line, sand area, big swing and a lake. On hot days locals swim up and down the lake, in the cold spring-fed lake. When searching for tadpoles and frogs kids almost always get wet, so be sure to bring towels and a change of clothes. Swimsuits are always a good idea.

In 2014 we witnessed the life cycle of frogs by visiting this park. Here's a timeline for future reference:



March 20 - Mating Frogs
May 14 -  Tadpoles
June 4 - Tadpoles with back legs
June 18 - Dime sized frogs
July 2 - Frogs could be heard, but not seen - hot day - went swimming instead


Directions:

Weiherstrasse 34
Kindsbach 66862
  • Heading from Landstuhl toward Kindsbach on the main road (Kaiserstr), turn right at the stop light in Kindsbach. 
  • After the turn follow the road and sign pointing to the left which says Barenloch.
  • Turn right with the road as it curves around. 
  • Park in the lot in front of the playground.

Pirate Ship Park, Homburg



This park has a knee-deep man-made pond with a pirate ship in the middle and rafts for the kids to play on.  There is a climbing wall and a skateboard park too. Bring sunscreen, swimming suits, dry clothes, towels, lunch and snacks. It’s about 30 minutes from Ramstein, so we make this park a special park day and usually go all day.

Directions:
  • Park at the swimming pool on the corner of Schwimmbadweg and Brunnenstrasse in Homburg and follow the path a short walk to the pirate ship.
  • The directions are a bit confusing when you get close. Be sure to look at a map before you leave.
  • Take A6 toward Saarbrücken
  • Take exit 9-Homburg for B423 toward Bexbach
  • Turn left at B423 (signs for Homburg)
  • Turn left at Richard-Wagner-Straße/L119
  • Turn left at Mainzer Str.
  • Turn right toward Schwimmbadweg
  • Turn left at Schwimmbadweg
  • Take the 1st right toward Brunnenstraße
  • Turn left at Schwimmbadweg
  • Take the 1st right onto Brunnenstraße

GPS Parking Lot Coordinates
N 49 19.724
E 7 20.978

Ramstein AFB - Big Play Ground on Michigan between New York and Oregon

This park is convenient and has nice climbing equipment.

Directions:
  • From the main gate, make a left at the traffic light by the KMC. 
  • Take that road until it forks. 
  • Keep right at the fork. 
  • Stay on that road. 
  • Go past Oregon and the park will be on your left closer to the next intersection, which its New York.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Conflict Management Policy


  1. When members have serious disagreements, they will make every effort to respectfully and privately resolve the issues.
  2. If the members cannot resolve the problem themselves, one member may request mediation by the UHSG.
  3. a) There will be 3 mediators chosen from the UHSG members
    b) At least 1 mediator will have no close personal ties with either party
    c) The mediators will hear the positions of each side and decide on a resolution
    d) The parties who requested mediation will abide by the resolution decided by the mediators, or they will be asked to leave the UHSG
  4. If a member is behaving in a way that is destructive to the UHSG’s mission:
a) The UHSG Liaison’s will make every effort to resolve the matter respectfully and privately.
b) If the issue cannot be solved privately by the Liaisons, 5 mediators will be chosen from the UHSG members to hear the issues and decide on a resolution.
c) At least 2 with no close personal ties to the member in question.
d) The member will abide by the decision of the mediators or will be asked to leave the UHSG.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

United Homeschoolers of Germany Liaison Descriptions

Our liaisons are elected by members present at the election meeting for one year terms. There are currently no term limits. If you are interested in helping in any of these positions please contact one of the group admins or send an email to UHSG


Administrative Support Liaison-Status Filled 
Establishes and publishes monthly meeting agenda; Records and publishes meeting minutes; Reserves monthly meeting location; Sets up, opens and closes meeting; Maintains accurate Liaison contact list; Creates and monitors annual group update\sweep; Updates UHSG log in passwords annually; Maintains UHSG listing and contact information with applicable base agencies and community publications(Kabel Magazine, School Liaison Office, Base Libraries, ect.); Updates and distributes UHSG brochure as needed; Works with Field Trip and Events Liaison to ensure UHSG name tags are available for member gatherings


Base Services Liaison-Status OPEN
Works with base facilities and organizations (i.e. Arts and Crafts Store, Ramstein Aquatic Center, Libraries)to provide programs for the homeschooling community; Relays information to the group for participating in programs and a current list of programs offered


Community Service Liaison-Status OPEN
Works with local charitable organizations, chaplain offices, service organizations, etc. to help provide service opportunities for homeschoolers; Does not hold fundraisers of any kind.


Enrichment Liaison-Status Filled
Oversees all aspects of UHSG Enrichment Day; Coordinates class locations, facilitators, and schedules; Works with parents to establish classes and clubs within the homeschooling community.


Field Trip and Events Liaison-Status Filled
Point of contact for UHSG members wishing to organize events and field trips; Creates and oversees event and field trip listings within in Facebook, Google group and newsletter for volunteer hosts/organizers; Maintains Google group calendar; Seeks out UHSG members to host/organize events and field trips for the group; Works with Administration Liaison to ensure UHSG name tags are available for member gatherings.


Hail/Farewell Liaison-Status Filled 
Point of contact for newcomers; Organizes hail & farewell gathering to welcome new members and say goodbye to those leaving; Monitors and responds to new comer questions on Facebook and Google group message boards; Screens new member requests on Facebook, email, and Google groups; Posts welcome to new member and invites members to meetings.


High School Liaison-Status Filled
Aids parents of homeschooled high schoolers; Shares information needed for transcripts, scholarship programs, and colleges; Assists with Prom, Driver’s Ed, and Graduation etc. within the school system or within the homeschool community; Creates yearly Homeschooling Through Highschool Workshop for group; Organizes end of year banquet and graduation ceremony; Admins UHSG HighSchool Facebook group.


Legal/School Liaison-Status Filled
Ensures support group is operating within current regulations; Keeps members updated on legislative happenings impacting our local community; works with the HSLDA to represent our group as necessary; Informs members of the challenges the homeschool community face and how to become a member of HSLDA; Works with the DoDEA School Liaisons; Maintains and streamlines knowledge about available classes, programs, and services provided to homeschoolers by the DoDEA; Refers members to proper Question and Answer documentation.


Music Liaison-Status OPEN
Provides information and classes and lessons in the local area; Maintains current list of local area performing arts teachers; Organizes annual homeschool talent show


Theater Liaison-Status OPEN
Provides information and classes and lessons in the local area; Maintains current list of local area performing arts teachers; Organizes one homeschool-based play per calendar year inclusive of all grade levels.


PreSchool and Kindergarten Liaison-Status OPEN
Creates events for preschool age members; Monitors and responds to preschool related questions on Facebook and Google groups.


Web Support Liaison-Status OPEN
Manages group’s email, blog, Google group, Works with Administration and Field Trip and Events Liaison to insure information accuracy; Maintains and promotes UHSG Pinterest board; Adds and maintain Pinner requests; Oversees monthly newsletter.

Friday, June 6, 2014

Find Us on the Web

Located in the Ramstein/Kaiserslautern region of Germany, our group is comprised of homeschooling families associated with the American military. Because of this, the group is quite transient. Most families live in the area for about three years. Moving to a new country can be exciting and uncomfortable at the same time and we do our best to help homeschoolers make the transition. We welcome those considering homeschooling and new to homeschooling regardless of belief, race or homeschooling style

Find us three places on the web.




On our blog you will find information on our past activities as well as our policies and procedures. If you're new to homeschooling, or a homeschooling family moving to the area , you will also find  wealth of information and tips to helps make the transition smoother. 


Google Group

Our Google Group is primary means of communicating policy changes and upcoming events.  Membership on the Google Group is required for new members PRIOR to membership on our Facebook Group.  Find our Google Group online at https://groups.google.com/d/forum/united-homeschoolers-of-germany.

Facebook
 Find Us on Facebook

Our Facebook Page is another place where members can stay updated on current events in our group .

Email Us


(updated 6/6/2017 - V)