March 21, 2007

Homeschool Blog Awards Categories and Updates

* updates below in dark red

The domain for the new HSBA site has been purchased! Heather and Laura of Sand, Sea and School are working on the details of the site design and plan to unveil the website soon. We will probably include a blog as well (so you can check that site for updates also). Not sure just yet. Not sure about exactly when nominations will begin, either... but we are making strides and getting sponsors interested in presents for winners! Would you like to offer something to the winners? Let me know soon!

I had some time after standardized testing today to sit down and type up my ideas for the new Homeschool Blog Awards categories. Here is my list (below). Let me know what you think and I'll make adjustments before we set things in stone for nominations. Laura, Heather - care to give us a little update of your own in the comments section or link to your own posts about this project here? Shoot me an email. I searched for your phone numbers and they have somehow escaped my email box.


1. Best Homeschool Mom Blog
Everyone is the best homeschool mom for their own children. With thousands of homeschool bloggers out there, please know that there will only be one winner online – but EACH OF US are winners in our own homes. If there’s a blogging mom out there that has been a particularly good example to you and you want to let her know… consider her for this nomination! [Her blog does not have to be exclusively about motherhood or homeschooling.]

2. Best Homeschool Dad Blog
We love to hear what dad has to say. Especially if he includes homeschool posts off and on. [Blog doesn’t have to be exclusively about homeschooling.]

3. Best Blog Design
Here’s your chance to nominate your favorite blog design and give your favorite blogger a pat on the back for her talent (or give her web designer some credit!).

4. Best Artistic Content Blog
This blogger has an eye-catching and interesting variety of graphics and photos in posts and in the general design that you enjoy. We want to thank those of you who post pictures and graphics that inspire us!

5. Best Crafts, Plans & Projects Blog
Do you turn to the blogosphere for a steady supply of great craft ideas, lesson plans or projects that you can do with your homeschoolers? Why not share your favorite blogs that provide them with all of us and give that person some recognition?

6. Best Family or Group Blog
Nominate your favorite Homeschool Family blog or your favorite group blog that is either run by Homeschoolers or discusses homeschool issues. [Blog doesn’t have to be exclusively about homeschooling.]

7. Best Encourager
It is time to say thanks to those bloggers out there who lift you up out of the homeschool “blahs” and help you get back on track. The winner of this category doesn’t have to be perfect or always in a good mood… just someone who makes you feel as if someone else cares and has a positive attitude overall.

8. 'Live-What-You-Believe' Homeschool Blog
A large percentage of homeschoolers are Christians, but this doesn’t have to mean Christianity only. Other religions or even strictly secular homeschool blogs can be nominated here. The person just has to do a good job marrying their faith (or lack of it) with their posts on homeschooling... uplifting others to walk in faith (or lack of it) and blessing others who adhere to that faith (or lack of it). I for one am thankful that we live in a land that is FREE to worship (or not) any way we see fit… and to homeschool our kids accordingly.

9. Best Unschooling or Eclectic Homeschooling Blog
This blogger should have a great variety of ideas and encouragement for those who homeschool to the beat of their own drum.

10. Best Geographical Blog
In 2005, we had separate categories for International and Canada. I felt that was a bit unfair. This time, we are including a category for ANY geographical place that you find interesting. If you are interested in a blog in Russia, Romania, Canada, Turkey, New Zealand, Texas or Washington D.C. – and your favorite blogger from that area talks a bit about that place in-between homeschool posts, PLEASE let us know! Be sure to let us know when you nominate the Best Geographical Blog that you TELL us WHERE the place is!

11. Best Current Events, Opinions or Politics Blog
We don’t want a strictly political blog that is run by a homeschooler unless quite a few posts have relevant information pertaining to homeschooling. News clips that affect our freedoms as homeschoolers and how homeschooling is portrayed in the media are ideal. We love to hear what other homeschool teachers are thinking and reading and their views on things that affect us all. [This blog does not have to be exclusively about homeschooling, current events, or politics… just a blog that often shares opinions on matters that you enjoy learning from.]

12. Best Homemaking or Recipes Blog
This blog should have content regarding homemaking, housekeeping, tips, ideas for making your life easier, information about raising multiple kids, or recipes that you enjoy trying. [This person should be a homeschooler but the blog doesn’t have to be exclusively about homeschooling, homemaking or recipes.]

13. Best Teen Blog
Let’s encourage those young bloggers to speak up and be a good example for their peers. I have seen so many wonderful teen blogs out there that deserve recognition. Let us know what some of your favorites are! [This blog does not have to be exclusively about homeschooling, but homeschooling should be mentioned often or it should be obvious from the template that the teen is a homeschooler.]

14. Funniest Homeschool Blog
We all need a laugh in-between laundry, lesson plans and loosing our cool. It is nice to get your smile back so you can share it with your students (who can only take “so much gloom” as Ma Walton said so eloquently on Little House on the Prairie). Nominate your favorite crack-pot or crack-up homeschool blog here.

15. Best Cyber-Buddy Blogger
A blogger that you haven’t met, but you think you would enjoy meeting and hanging out with. She/he is a person that you would love to co-op with or live next door to. Who knows, maybe one day we will get together somewhere at one of these bloggy meetings I hear about. I’m so jealous!

16. Best Curriculum or Business Blog
Let us know your favorite homeschool business or curriculum blogs so we can read them, too!

17. Best Variety
This blogger is one that could fit in any of these categories … but they just can’t be pinned down in ONE. This type of blogger is the ADD hyper-focused type… always moving on from one thing to the next… and always keeping you interested in coming back for more!

18. Best Thrifty Homeschooler
Most of us are homeschooling on a shoe-string. Nominate your favorite money-saving blogger so you can share her tips with the blogosphere and bless a bunch of homeschool children in the process! [Blog doesn't have to be exclusively about frugality.]

Ever feel like a looser after reading someone else’s lesson plans, seeing their field trip photos, listening to them talk about what they got done today, or seeing pictures of their children’s accomplishments? You were probably feeling the effects of visiting a SUPER-HOMESCHOOLER’s blog. These are the A-list homeschool parents that just BLOW YOU AWAY with their enthusiasm. We all have our good days, but this blogger has us all beat.

*new* 20. Best Nitty-Gritty Homeschool Blog
Since we included a category for the Super-Homeschooler... I figured we would add one in for the homeschooler who is brutally honest and open about her mistakes and failures. These are the moms that make you feel better and let you know that it is OK that we aren't perfect. What would we do without them???

21. Best NEW Homeschool Blog
It is hard making a name for yourself in the blogosphere. A lot of times, you feel as if you are writing and no one is out there. If you have stumbled upon a great new blogger who has a lot of potential and you want to share them with the rest of us… please consider nominating them for this category!

Quick Links:
More about the Belated Homeschool Blog Awards (read the last post)

Buzz Words: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


my5wolfcubs said...

Wow! Lots of awards! The only suggestion I have is to change the "religious" award to another word if you want to make it the way you describe it (which is neat)... Maybe "freedom of faith award" or "live what you believe award" or something along those lines. As a Christian, I'd rather be Christ-like than religious anyway! Keep up the great work!

Anonymous said...

Ditto on what Lee said! I don't think I'd call it "religious" when you are including "secular."

Great categories, can't wait to see it unfold. Darn it, I don't qualify for anything since I JUST started my blog last month!


Maria Miller said...

Hi Sprittibee,
I couldn't find your contact info.

I could offer a prize for winner(s).

Please contact me at

Anonymous said...

We are soo excited! I plan on working on the website today!

Laura and I are so excited to be apart of this, and cant wait to see the final results!

I too am a new homeschooling mom, we just started our journey 3 weeks ago. I wrote today about my struggles thus far and would love to have some of you more "seasoned" homeschooling moms stop by and give me some advice (or, just tell me to stop whining!)

Talk Soon,
Heather (Sand Sea & School)

Sprittibee said...

Lee - Thanks for your idea. I used your title as well.

Jennifer - I agree... yet there is so much of my blog reading that is done specifically because I seek out faith-based encouragement from other homeschooling moms. I didn't want to leave the category entirely out... and yet I wasn't sure exactly how to put it in without including everyone. It is a touchy subject and I didn't want to discriminate. I tried having Christian and Secular at first, but I'm sure there are some other religions out there and wanted to give everyone a fair chance. No one can say that I didn't try hard to include everyone on this one. :)

Maria... my email is sprittibee @ sbcglobal dot net. ;) It is in my "Contact" page linked on the front page of my blog in the white sidebar. That sounds great that you have a donation for the contest! I can't wait! This is going to be fun.

Heather - newbies are welcome to win in ANY category... especially the "new homeschool blog" category. :) Didn't you see it down there in the bottom portion of the list? THANK YOU AGAIN for your help and for registering the domain name for the site! I owe you a few dollars, I'm sure!

Andrea_R said...

I haven't forgotten about the blue book graphic - I'm just not at home this week. :) i am definitely going to get to it this coming week, because I have surgery next Friday and I won't be able to do it after that. :-/

Alexandra said...

I think you did an excellent job at including many different categories. It includes a rainbow of homeschooler blogs. I'm glad you are taking over the hs.'ll be a classy job of it. :)

Mrs.Martin said...

Thank you for all your hard work and time to take over the awards. All of us small people who are in the background of the blog world notice and care.

Mama Squirrel said...

Sounds like fun--I've linked.

Sprittibee said...

Andrea - we have a graphic already. ;) I'm sorry about that. Heather and Laura went ahead and made one. It is red and black this year. ;) I'm going to post it tomorrow so everyone can share it.

In case you want to be one of the firsts, you can see it here (you will have to copy and paste)...

PLEASE don't use the link for your graphic image on your blog. Save it on your own computer and upload it to your blog or your graphics hosting site. If we have everyone using the same link for the graphic, it will knock down the photobucket site for the Homeschool Blog Awards website. Using someone else's saved graphic is called 'Stealing Bandwidth'. It is not ethical on the net! There's a quick lesson for you all in case you are new to graphic use with blogging! Also, if you use other people's photos, be sure to LINK to them and give them credit. Laura and Heather (of Swank Web Design) created this year's promotional, nominee, and winner images (so give them a tiny link at the bottom of your post to pat them on the back for their hard work and generosity)!

THANK YOU Alexandra and the Martins! I think Spunky did a fabulous job of hosting these awards during their first year in 2005. We are just excited to give a few more moms the chance to win prizes with the extra categories. I had a bunch of categories that I didn't know ANYONE to nominate in last time... so hopefully the descriptions will help you get some ideas going.

A great idea would be to print a copy of the categories early (now) and go ahead and start marking blog names down by them as you browse in the next week or so. That way, you'll be ready to give us some names!!!

This is going to be a blast. I can't wait to see all the nominees and winners displaying their badges on their sidebars! ;)

Sprittibee said...

Thanks Mama Squirrel.

*** NIX THE GRAPHIC JUST YET... Seems we accidentally put 2007 instead of 2006 on this one! The 2007 awards won't be until mid-December. ***

Anonymous said...

Hi, great work getting the awards running this year :-)

I work for Math-U-See and we would be interested in offering some prizes as well. my email is...

thanks and good luck,

Anonymous said...

I'm interested to see who wins #9. There are a lot of awards, though.

You might like the Education Forums about Homeschooling and Unschooling.

link said...

Wow this looks awesome! What a variety!

Sprittibee said...

Alexandra... :) Thanks, by the way... again. I just nominated you for best thrifty homeschool blogger. Shhhh! ;)

Ethan - Thanks for the prize offer! ;)

Scott Hughes - Thanks for the tip. Be checking the Homeschool Blog Awards website for voting next Monday the 9th!

Applehead - :) Thanks. I hope you'll join in the fun.

The CLUES Academy said...




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