Tag Archives: seminars

Schedule a Homeschooling With Character Seminar

Schedule a Homeschooling With Character Seminar

We would love to come to your area with our Homeschooling With Character parenting seminar. This seminar is flexible to meet the needs of homeschool groups everywhere. Here are some details for you:

Continue reading

Schedule a Raising Kids With Character Seminar

Raising Kids With Character Parenting Seminar by Ray & Donna Reish

It’s that time of year already! That time when we start considering where and how often we will travel to speak in the spring and summer. We haven’t been traveling as much the past few years as we have been working hard to first of all revise Character Quality Language Arts (CQLA) (finished four years ago) and now to revise and complete the entire series of Meaningful Composition. These two projects have been super expensive and time consuming and left few resources or energy for a lot of traveling and speaking.


We are hoping to get back out there more in 2016, and we would love to come to your area with our Raising Kids With Character parenting seminar. This seminar is flexible and has been widely received! We love helping parents with parenting—and this seminar lets us do that on a larger scale.

Continue reading

Ray & Donna Reish’s Speaking Topics and Seminars

Ray & Donna Reish's Speaking Topics and Seminars

Ray & Donna Reish



We are available to speak on a variety of topics including Christian parenting, marriage, homeschooling, organization, prioritizing, heart training, raising teens, language arts teaching, writing instruction, scheduling, home management, and more. Additionally, Joshua (our oldest son, age 31, BA in history with emphases on literature, writing, and government) speaks to parents about how to teach literature, creative writing, social sciences, speech, debate, history, and more.



Character Ink has dozens of workshop possibilities for your event! And we love to help families. Win-Win!

Check out the links below to find out the details of our homeschooling workshops, weekend seminars, and parenting sessions.

You will find the following and much more!

Continue reading

Discipline: Punishment/Chastisement VS Consequences/Reality Discipline

It has been important to us in our child training that we understand (or at least try to understand!) the difference between foolishness (willfulness) and childishness (underdeveloped character). The differences between these two types of behaviors in children are crucial in disciplining properly. This is truly one of the biggest mistakes that we see parents make. For example:

(1) A child who spilled his milk at the table is disciplined in the same manner as he was earlier in the day when he struck his brother

(2) A child who forgot to shut the door and the dog got in the house is disciplined in the same manner as he was when he talked back to his mother

(3) A child who didn’t thoroughly clean his room is disciplined in the same manner as he was earlier when he lied to his dad about using one of this tools

In our child training, Ray and I have tried to determine whether a behavior was rebellion against us (as in outright disobedience or disrespect) or childishness (as in forgetfulness, procrastination, sloppiness, etc.):

1. Foolishness

   a. Rebellion

   b. Disobedience

   c. Disrespect

  d. Lying

2. Childishness

   a. Undeveloped or underdeveloped character

   b. Forgetfulness, procrastination, irresponsibility, etc.

   c. May turn into “foolishness” if left unattended

We do this because disobedience requires biblical discipline whereas childishness requires the second aspect of child training we have used: reality discipline (or consequences). 

I like what an attendee at a recent seminar told us that she heard about this topic: Punishment is only for the Four D’s:

1. Disobedience (i.e. not forgetfulness or overlooking routine at first)

2. Disrespect (i.e. direct disrespect to parents or those in authority–not disagreeing with you respectfully or having their own thoughts!)

3. Deceit (lying, stealing, telling half truths, etc.)

4. Destruction (purposely hurting things or people)

                            Which Behavior Is This? 

Discerning between disobedience and childishness can be so difficult! Even after nearly thirty-one years of parenting, Ray and I still continuously ask each other which behavior a child is displaying. 

Difficult or not, we must do it. The Bible says that we are not to exasperate our children. Two sure ways to exasperate them are to punish incorrectly, as in anger, etc., and to punish something as disobedience, when we should be training through consequences.

 All parents are faced with this. A child dawdles when we call him to come get ready for bed, and we wonder whether this is just childishness or if it is real disobedience. When our son leaves the dog out of the kennel for the third night in a row, and the pooch potties on the new carpet, we ask ourselves if our little guy is disobeying or forgetting. 

In a nutshell , if a child is disobedient, disrespectful, or rebellious, we have a heart issue—and a serious discipline problem that needs handled in a serious manner—and quickly. That is, the Four D’s need punishment/chastisement, not consequences or reality discipline.

If a child is forgetful, slow, unreliable, etc. (especially a younger child), it is usually childishness—and we can “train” that undeveloped or underdeveloped childishness out of a child through consequences and reality discipline.

Besides disciplining these two types of behaviors correctly, we also need to watch our response to these behaviors. Simply put, not putting the hose back in the garage after the child watered the garden should not be met with the same response by the parent as lying about putting the hose back in the garage!

It is like responding to a child’s red streak in her hair in the same way as we do if that child uses God’s name in vain. There is simply no comparison. And the same should be true in our response to childishness vs one of the Four D’s.

For more information on this, please check out Discipline at our blog–or host a Raising Kids With Character seminar in your church or parenting group or homeschooling group. (Our RKWC seminar is a Christian parenting seminar for all Christian parents as opposed to our homeschooling workshops that we do for homeschool groups. All parents, homeschooling or not, can benefit from Raising Kids With Character!)

From Donna’s Desk February 25, 2013

We have a lot of announcements here at Training for Triumph, um, I mean, Character Ink! So many that I will enumerate them for you!

1. First off, our name change: As of this spring, we will be changing from Training for Triumph to Character Ink! We feel that the new name more represents what we are about–publishing materials with a character base, including our Christian parenting seminar (which is also getting a name change!).

2. Rather than having a lengthy monthly (or quarterly in the case of the last few months!) newsletter, we are changing to quick weekly updates (like this one!). These will include announcements (like our March sale is starting this week! and our next parenting seminar is in Bluffton, IN this weekend!), as well as recent articles, posts, and thoughts from our blogs and FaceBook pages.

3. Our March sale for CQLA is starting this weekend! Throughout the month of March, all CQLA books (all colors, all levels) will be $59 rather than the normal $79 price. Spread the word! Tell  your friends!

4. Our Christian parenting seminar is also getting a name change: Raising Kids With Character (RKWC)! The blog (Positive Parenting 365) will soon get this new name, as will the upcoming book that goes along with the seminar. RKWC is a Christian parenting seminar that starts out with the Five W’s and H of Character Training, then moves into Parenting Paradigms (how what you believe about parenting affects how you parent), then into Essentials of Parenting With Character (explanations, priorities, time, commuication, and more). Then comes the fun part: character qualities, one by one, and tips and tricks on instilling these in your children. It is for parents of kids ages birth to twelve or so. (A follow up seminar is in the works–Raising Tweens and Teens With Character!) We have had several opportunities to present the seminar (and improve it!) over the past two years in our area, and we would love to bring it to your church, small group, homeschool group, etc. It is not homeschool specific, so it is a good opportunitiy for homeschoolers to serve their church in general by offering it. Give us a call for more info–and watch these weekly updates!

5. We have several avenues to reach us now:
a. Our website (free samples of our curriculum and more!):
b. Character Ink blog–just starting this to put homeschooling articles and newsletters up– http://characterinkblog.com/
c. Character Ink FaceBook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/characterinkcompany
d. Raising Kids With Character blog (still old name): http://positiveparenting3-6-5.blogspot.com/
e. Raising Kids With Character FaceBook page (still old name): http://www.facebook.com/#!/charactertrainingfromtheheart
f. Language Lady blog–daily language arts, grammar, and writing tips for teachers, students, parents, and professionals: http://languagelady365.blogspot.com/
g. Language Lady FaceBook page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/languagelady365

LIKE us, follow us….we appreciate it!

Donna Reish

P.S. All of our blog posts are linked each time on the FB pages, so if you follow the FB pages, you won’t miss the blog posts, articles, updates, etc.!

Character Training for Toddlers and Preschoolers–Boundaries, Simple Tastes, and More (partial reprint)

With the closeness of two of our parenting seminars in Indiana and the extremely high interest in training toddlers and preschoolers in character and obedience, I decided to re-run parts of two past posts today. Scroll all the way to the bottom for some other links, as well! And share our blog and FaceBook page with others who might be interested in learning about how to enjoy those years more than ever–from a Christian couple who LOVED ages two to six! Smile…

Question: How can I start some of the character training concepts and habits that you describe with a toddler?

Answer: If you are just starting out with your family and have only a toddler, you have the perfect opportunity to start out right in the character training of your children! I will offer some general tips below, but even more importantly than the “daily ins and outs” of the ideas I recommend, I suggest that you read Parenting Paradigms at this blog (soon to become “Character Training From the Heart”). Even if you take to heart some of the ideas for your little one given in this Q and A, in the end, you will be more successful at character training if you have a firm handle on what you believe about parenting and children.

                                        Toddler Character Training Tips

1. Start adapting the toddler to your schedule and your family’s lifestyle as soon as you can (six to nine months) rather than making your family’s life revolve around the little one’s “wants.” You want to enjoy your toddler within the dynamics that your family already has (with the addition of the joy and wonder that a toddler brings into the family, of course)—as opposed to making everything change to meet unnecessary and often chaotic demands that a toddler who is given his own way all the time can often make.(Check out our important material on discerning wants vs. needs. ALWAYS meet needs–in a timely, loving, and consistent way!)

2. Remember that you are setting the stage right now for your child’s “tastes” (follow us on PP 365 or schedule our seminar for more details about this important concept).

a. You can set his tastes for defiance (allowing screaming, throwing, thrashing, and “no” from him) or submission.

b. You can set his tastes for selfishness and meanness (allowing hitting or other forms of striking, giving in to him when he wants something that someone else has, always making his surroundings whatever he wants (i.e. no bedtime, no sitting in high chair, etc.) due to “fits” or for kindness, gentleness, sweetness, and tenderness.

c. You can set his tastes for hyper-stimulation and activity (too much running; no scheduled down times; television and videos all the time) or for simple things (books, healthy toys, rest, etc.).

d. You can set his tastes to lack focus and not enjoy learning (again, too much video, not starting out with books and simple music; an avalanche of cartoons and children’s programming (some of which are developed in two second bits to keep up with short attention spans, thus, causing kids’ attention spans not to lengthen as they should) or a love for learning (via books, strong family learning, and discussion times, etc.).

3. Decide ahead of time what your “behavior absolutes” are.

a. These are the behaviors or character that you absolutely will not allow in your home. What you allow now will become the “acceptable behaviors” to your child. These seemingly innocent actions include “fibbing,” hitting, running the other way when called, etc.

b. For us, these “behavior absolutes” included talking back (no toddler saying “no” without being punished); lying or deceit; temper tantrums; and striking (hitting, pulling hair, throwing things at someone, etc.). Obviously, we wanted our kids to learn to obey and submit to us and to learn the many character qualities that are crucial to living a Christian life, but these four things were things we never wavered on—and things that we made huge deals out of when they were not adhered to by the toddler/preschooler.

4. Start showing your little one the joy of doing what is right. Contentment in your own life, the blessing of work, the joy of loving God and His people—and all of the character that you want your little one to adopt in his life—love, longsuffering, diligence, responsibility, and more will more likely be realized in our kids’ lives when we ourselves embrace and model them.

5. Try to establish routines that will aid in his character development—bedtimes, rising times, little “chores” (putting his books in his book basket after you read), nap times, meal times, story time, etc.

For more tips on toddlers and babies, click on the links provided below:

Who makes the decisions for the children—starts here and goes for a few days: http://positiveparenting3-6-5.blogspot.com/2010/10/day-260-who-makes-decisions-for.html

Say what you mean—starts here and goes for two days: http://positiveparenting3-6-5.blogspot.com/2010/09/day-248-dont-leave-your-little-one-at.html

Storytime: http://positiveparenting3-6-5.blogspot.com/2010/07/day-204-story-time.html

Reish Family Speaking Topics

 Dear Event Organizer,

This document has been prepared to make event organizers know of the topics that our ministry/publishing company (Character Ink) provides to homeschoolers (and in the case of our parenting seminar and marriage workshops, to Christian organizations in general). You will find us on the web under different names:

1. Character Ink (formerly Training for Triumph) –our homeschool publishing/cottage class/speaking ministry 

2. Character Training From the Heart (formerly Positive Parenting)–our parenting seminar, blog, and Facebook page

3. Language Lady–Donna’s language arts, writing, grammar, spelling, vocabulary, reading, and speaking blog and Facebook page (for teachers, parents, students, and anybody who wants to learn about proper usage and more!)

You will find the following in this document:

1.  Workshops for Ray, Donna, or Joshua Reish (or some combination of it)

2.  Additional seminar/workshop possibilities

3.  Biographical and publishing information 

We are open to combining/cutting/changing however is needed to fit your convention. Please feel free to contact us about doing a “series” or combining workshops in whatever way would meet the needs of your attendees.


Family Living and Family Unity

Bible Buzzwords: Scriptures, Along With Infamous Reish Family Buzzwords, That Teach Children How to Live a Character-Filled Life—Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
“Reishes pick up some carpeting”; “If she thinks you did it, to her, you did it”; “Dad’s in the kitchen/Mom’s in the kitchen”; “See a need”; “Penny for your thoughts”; “You’re number three”; “How does that make her feel?” These buzzwords, along with many more, are rooted in Scripture and have come to be vital teaching tools for the Reish family. Come and learn “Bible Buzzwords” from the Reish home, along with applications of them, while seeing how teaching our kids to walk with Christ is more of a lifestyle than a lesson, more relationship than rules, and more communication than curriculum.

Family Unity – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
Ray and Donna Reish share how they have developed family unity in their family of seven children through family togetherness, family worship, family times, family work, family protection, and more. Lots of practical applications to make your children each other’s best friends – and to make them crazy about their parents!

Reaching the Heart of Your Teen – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
Ray and Donna Reish share what they have found to work in reaching and keeping the hearts of their teens. With six children ages thirteen through twenty-five right now (and one elementary boy), the Reishes have found some very specific keys to discipling and mentoring their teens and young adults.

Child Training of Younger Children – Ray and Donna; Donna alone
Laying the foundation for a successful homeschool and successful family relationships, Ray and Donna Reish teach parents how to train young children in obedience, diligence, kindness, responsibility, and much more.

Discipling and Mentoring Your Children – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
More about discipling and mentoring children—beginning with elementary age and moving into young adults. This workshop, which can be presented by Ray or Donna Reish (or the two), is for those with all ages of children, describing how to begin reaching the heart of your younger children while still maintaining discipline, then how to move into a mentoring role with your older teens and young adults.

The Well-Trained Heart – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
This very newest workshop(s) presented by Ray and Donna Reish and based on their book, The Well-Trained Heart, may be one to a dozen sessions in length! The basic, beginning session is that of “The Whys and How’s of Heart Training”—what the Bible says about heart training, general principles in heart training, the importance of heart training, the trend towards neglecting heart training in favor of academic training and activities, and much more. The remaining sessions may be any chapters from The Well-Trained Heart.

              Character Training Seminar Workshops

The Five W’s of Character Training—Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone

This workshop, the first in our popular “Character Training From the Heart” seminar (though may be used separately, as well), teaches parents the what, who, when, where, why (and how!) of character training in the home. Using Scripture and thirty years of parenting experience, the Reishes convince parents in this workshop that it starts with us—and is up to us—to train our children in godly parenting, how and where this takes place (it’s not as elaborate as you might think),and much more!

Parenting Paradigms—Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone

How we parent begins with what we believe—what we believe about how children come into this world, whose responsibility child training is, what our role should be in it, what we believe Scripture tells us about parenting, timing and appropriate age of training, empathy in parenting, and much more. What we believe will dictate what we do every single day of our parenting lives. Find out why and how in this workshop.

Starting Out Right With Babies and Toddlers—Ray and Donna; Donna alone

Demanding toddlers become disobedient preschoolers, disobedient preschoolers become surly elementary children, surly elementary children become disrespectful teens, and disrespectful teens become entitled young adults. What we do in parenting our babies and toddlers makes a huge difference in the success of our parenting in other stages. This workshop focuses on the first four qualities that are essential for parenting babies and toddlers—contentment, cheerfulness, obedience, and submission. “I wish every young Christian parent could hear these concepts—ones that were taught to us thirty years ago and have made a huge difference in our parenting” (Donna).

Early Qualities for Preschoolers—Ray and Donna; Donna alone

This workshop takes the first four qualities needed for babies and toddlers—submission, obedience, contentment, and cheerfulness—and builds on those in the life of the four to six year old child. In this workshop, Reishes explain how to apply those in your little one’s life, while raising kids that others enjoy being around and that older siblings adore! Loving and training these ages are some of the most blessed years of parenting (along with many other years!)—and parenting children biblically with boundaries, love, fun, and biblical concepts makes all the difference in their dispositions, the family’s efficiency and joy, and family unity.

Child Training vs Heart Training—Ray and Donna; Donna alone

Something should start to happen in our character training between the ages of eight and ten. This workshop teaches how to transition from child training to heart training—and how the foundational character training plays a role in that transition. How do we get from “putting out fires” in our kids’ behavior to training their hearts for life? Ray and Donna have insights from their thirty years of parenting that can help parents move into heart training of their children effectively.

Helping Tweens Grow in Character and Virtue—Ray and Donna; Donna alone

Taking tweens and young teens from obedience and submission  for the sake of avoiding punishment to genuine respect, self-control, diligence, truthfulness, responsibility, and more can be a daunting task. But it can be done! And we can enjoy those ten to fourteen year olds instead of dreading the next confrontation! This workshop focuses on how to help our children grow in character and virtue because “it’s the right thing to do”—and apply it to their lives for life!

Fathering and Marriage

Meeting the Needs of Your Wife and Children – Ray Reish
Ray Reish looks at the primary needs of a home school wife and children and explains how to meet these needs by focusing on them over less important things. Ray will explain practical ways to meet needs at various stages and ages—and how to continue to be one with your wife in a busy homeschool family. Very motivating and enlightening.

Teaching the Bible to Your Children Without Pressure – Ray Reish
Ray Reish gives home school dads the courage to dig into the Bible with their families – without a Bible degree or the pressure that they aren’t doing it right! Ray shares dozens and dozens of fun and non-pressured ways the Bible has been brought into his homeschool over the past twenty years – and how to make God’s Word and its teachings the center of your school and life.

The Successful Home Schooling Father – Ray Reish
Ray Reish shares several components that have, in the eyes of his wife and children, made him a successful home schooling father. Fathers everywhere can be successful in their home schooling efforts when they learn to die to themselves and serve their families as opposed to ruling them.

Family Worship, Family Altar, Family Devotions – Ray Reish
How Can I Do It All? Ray Reish gives dads the encouragement they need to “do the next right thing” – and not be overwhelmed by the “advice overload” that makes sharing Christ with our children more complicated and out of reach than it really is. In this workshop, Ray discusses family devotions, family read alouds, family worship, family prayer time, teaching our children about God constantly, teaching our children to love the Lord, and training children to have an others-first mindset. Dads can go home and begin immediately doing “the next right thing” – without being perfect or following an elaborate system.

Marriage by the Book – Ray and Donna; Ray alone
In this marriage workshop, Ray Reish (or Ray and Donna) describes how he has applied Scriptures about marriage, selflessness, and deference to their marriage to develop marital oneness. More than another “rule and reign” and “respect and obey” workshop, this one focuses on truly loving and giving—from both the husband and the wife. This approach to marriage makes the “ruling” and “respecting” come much more naturally!

Helps for Homeschool Moms
(Donna Reish presents these sessions, very popular and helpful ones, to home school groups every year; Ray and Donna may also do these together, if desired, for moms and dads; these sessions may be done individually as well; however, if all three are done, they should be done in the order listed here.)

Prioritizing Your Life, School, and Home – Donna Reish
The first session in this three part series “prioritizing” is a needful topic for home school moms and dads. In this life-changing and popular session, Donna Reish teaches parents how to prioritize their lives, schools, and homes—the difference between a priority and a desire, how to find God’s best for your family, how and when to say no, and more. This session is especially appropriate for fathers and mothers to attend together.

Organizing Your Life, School, and Home – Donna Reish
The next session, organizing – takes prioritizing a step further and shows how to live your priorities out by organizing your home school day, housework, school work, and more. This session also includes tips for helping children become organized, diligent workers, including information about chore charts and daily checklists.

Scheduling Your Life, School, and Home – Donna Reish
Finally, Donna Reish focuses on scheduling your school day in many scenarios – putting character first. She also teaches how to face various scheduling challenges, such as scheduling with babies; multi level scheduling; and various curriculum-focused scheduling. This session also includes tips for helping children become organized, diligent workers, including information about chore charts and daily checklists

Child Training

Child Training in the Christian Homeschool – Donna Reish
Donna Reish delivers this child training workshop in which she touches on the main aspects of child training that affect a family’s home school success in the daily ins and outs. She exposes the child-run home and explains how to counter it. Especially suited for parents of children twelve and under.

Training Children to Be Diligent Workers – Donna Reish
Donna Reish goes beyond a daily chore chart (though that is certainly a part of it) to explain the basics of raising diligent workers in the home. She has found several keys that have made her children not just “chore doers” but responsible, diligent children at early ages. (Much of this information is also included in part three of the character series.)

Babies and Toddlers – Donna Reish
Donna Reish examines two extremes of parenting babies in home school circles: child run and authoritarian (extreme parent-controlled). Donna gives a gentle balance between the two for the newborn baby—and how to keep babies and toddlers from becoming self-centered children, self-absorbed teens, and selfish adults. She explains how she and her husband gently incorporated babies and toddlers into their home school lifestyle–while still meeting the needs of the other children—without falling into the trap of either extreme.

Home Schooling Preschoolers and Kindergarteners – Donna Reish
Donna Reish continues the parent-led advice for young parents and tells them how to train preschoolers and kindergarteners in character, obedience, love of learning, diligence, and more—before beginning “academics.”

Day in the Life of a Preschooler or Kindergartener – Donna Reish
Donna Reish uses her upcoming children’s book, Jonathan’s Journal, to show parents of preschoolers and kindergarteners what boundaries, structure, attention, love, and learning look like in the day of her young son—and how homeschooling parents can duplicate this balanced approach in their families.

General Homeschooling

Thirty Years and Counting—Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone

Thirty years ago this fall, Ray and Donna Reish, married for two years with a one-year-old in tow, embarked on the homeschooling journey by homeschooling Donna’s eighth grade sister. (They also began helping folks in a nearby homeschool-unfriendly state start homeschooling.) Three decades and seven children later, they are still living the homeschooling lifestyle with one senior and one eighth grader—and five successful graduates and helping homeschoolers around the world.

In this session, the Reishes share what it was like thirty years ago for homeschoolers (“walking to school uphill in five feet of snow wearing flip flops”) and what has kept them going—and strong—for all of these years.  They share their “tips for success” along with motivation to “do the next right thing” and a little humor here and there.

Come and learn the importance of creating a love for learning, the foundations of child discipline in the successful homeschool, scheduling secrets, reaching the hearts of your teens, teaching all kinds of learners, keeping your marriage strong, and much more. You will laugh, cry, and jot down ideas that will make a difference in your life, relationships, school, and home.

Schooling the Preschooler and Kindergartener – Donna Reish
Donna Reish gives some surprising news about preschoolers and kindergarteners – the first skill they should be taught is obedience! She explains how to follow an order in teaching this age that focuses on the truly important things, how to enjoy these years, and more.

Multi-Level Teaching – Donna Reish
This workshop focuses on unit study approaches with many levels of children. Especially geared towards moms with children of ages birth through age fourteen, Donna Reish trains parents in scheduling, room time for younger children, the bus stop approach for adding in and deleting various ages of children at certain points of study, keeping little ones busy, older children helping younger ones, and much more.

Teaching Using Unit Studies – Donna Reish
The how’s and why’s of unit studies, as well as some of the downfalls and how to overcome those downfalls. Donna Reish, who has taught various unit studies for twenty years, describes different unit studies, such as chronological, literature-based, topic-based, and character-based. She describes how to implement the unit study approach with various ages of children, evaluating middle school students’ “unit study” work when tests and worksheets are not widely used, developing oral comprehension to aid in unit study effectiveness, the bus stop approach for teaching older children with younger children, and how to know when a child needs more independent study instead of the unit study.

So You’re Gonna Home School – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
Donna Reish (or Ray or both) encourages beginning home schoolers, giving them the information they need to begin to home school successfully – and enjoy their children at home. In this helpful session, she explains using statistics and studies why homeschooling is superior. Then she explains the top ten things new homeschoolers need to know and/or do, such as setting up a homeschooling schedule, choosing activities wisely, teaching like Jesus, keeping records, and much more.

Home Schooling Your High Schooler – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
After graduating three students from her family’s homeschool, Donna Reish (or Ray or the two) explains many aspects of home schooling high schoolers that they has found to be successful, including mentoring, training towards a student’s bent, helping young teens be successful, training teens to serve, and more. Donna will touch on transcript writing as well.

Teaching Like Jesus – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
Jesus was the Master Teacher; Donna Reish (or Ray or the two) explains how home school moms (and dads!) can teach like Jesus. In this session, the Reishes pull out various examples in Scriptures of how Jesus teaches and how the Bible says we should teach and apply them to help homeschooling parents become “master” teachers. We can’t go wrong in our homeschools when we teach and act like Jesus!

Top Twenty-Plus From Twenty-Plus! – Ray and Donna; Ray alone; Donna alone
Our Top Twenty Pieces of Advice From Twenty+ Years of Home Schooling—Our new and very popular workshop; Ray and Donna Reish (or either one alone) share the Reishes’ top twenty pieces of advice—from teaching children to read to teaching children to get along with each other—from twenty years of home school. This can be done in one hour (with tidbits of advice from all twenty areas) – or several (going into detail about many of the twenty pieces of advice) or somewhere in between (i.e a Part I and Part II workshop, etc.).

Teaching Students Critical Thinking Skills – Joshua Reish
Do you want your students to have strong critical thinking skills but wonder how to teach them? In this workshop, Joshua Reish (homeschool graduate who tested out of nearly all of his college degree) will show you how to help children from preschool to college expand their reasoning skills, think critically, discern teaching, and more.

Developing a Love for Learning Donna alone–This topic may be one session in length – or several sessions (preferred)

Donna Reish draws on her thirty years of home schooling—and developing a love for learning in her seven children—to help home school parents see how they can have children who love learning and enjoy home schooling. She includes information on the importance of beginning early in developing a love for learning (as opposed to a disdain for multiple workbooks at a young age); the influence of free time and frivolities on love for learning; the value of reading aloud; building comprehension to build enjoyment of learning; how hands on learning encourages a love for learning; modeling love for learning; creating learning memories; the fun and value of family learning times; how to develop a home school lifestyle; the effects of peers on love for learning; developing study skills; spiritual training at various times; teaching multiple children and multiple learning styles; and much more.

Language Arts Areas

Teaching Reading – Donna Reish
Donna’s master’s work is in reading specialist, but she learned how to teach reading by “doing the stuff.” Donna Reish helps build confidence in the home schooling mom to teach her children to read, including developing pre-reading skills naturally in the preschoolers, what readiness to learn to read is and what it is not; the basics of reading instruction; phonics vs. whole language; how to build comprehension skills; choosing readers; and more.

Teaching Language Arts – Donna Reish
Donna Reish shares what she has found to be the ideal order for language arts instruction in the home school, In this workshop, Donna takes language arts instruction year by year from preschool through twelfth grades—area by area (listening, comprehension, reading, grammar, speech, writing, literature, and more). She details the important connection between grammar and composition; the value of a directed writing approach; and many, many practical teaching tips for language arts based on her six years of experience of writing twenty language arts and composition books for two home school suppliers – and her twenty-two years of homeschooling (beginning with her younger sister).

Teaching Writing – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish explains how to teach composition, including applying grammar to composition; the importance and how to’s of outlining; various composition types; writing meaningful reports and essays; using age-appropriate source material; various outlining techniques; teaching writing with a directed writing approach, and more, based on her six years of experience of writing over twenty language arts and composition books for two home school suppliers.

The Timed Essay/the Five Paragraph Essay (for SAT and other quick writing preparation) – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish teaches parents (or teens) how to write a strong SAT or other timed essay including how to practice at home; what the graders are looking for; the importance of organization; time management techniques; building a background of knowledge; and more.

Writing the Research Paper – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish teaches parents how to teach the MLA format of research papers, from research to outlining to gathering information on note cards and then on to final product. This session (including its detailed handout) takes the guesswork out of research paper writing for junior high and high school students.

How to Teach Study Skills and Comprehension – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna or Joshua Reish explains how to teach your students to learn including how to encourage and build comprehension; how to teach mnemonics and other retention techniques; choosing books; the importance of questions and verbal interchange in building comprehension; teaching children to think via discussions; building a background of experience; thinking to write and writing to think; and more.

Editing and Grammar Essentials – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish teaches home school moms how to edit their students’ writings and help their students learn to edit and revise themselves including content editing and usage editing, as well as using checklists to revise and improve writing. The handout and checklist provided in this workshop are great helps to homeschool moms.

Teaching Creative Writing – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish teaches home schooling parents how to teach creative writing—with handouts and lots of application, Donna will take parents through the creative essay, using quotations, writing short stories (with scene development, goals, obstacles, and resolution), and much more.

From Words to Sentences and More – Donna Reish or Joshua Reish
Donna Reish teaches home schooling parents how to teach the fundamentals of sentence writing, vocabulary building, and punctuation. Taking the “complex” out of those “complex-compound” sentence structures we learned in school many years ago, Donna teaches the structure of a sentence, sentence combining, sentence openers, and much more in an extremely easy-to-understand way.

Teaching Literature – Joshua Reish
Do names like Shakespeare, Milton, and Longfellow intimidate you as a teacher? Is it really necessary for your students to study literature? In this workshop, Joshua Reish will explain why the study of literature is important for all students, and more importantly, how you can teach it with confidence.
How to teach Shakespeare Even if You Don’t Understand It – Joshua Reish
In this workshop Joshua Reish, a home school graduate with a BA in history, will explain why Shakespeare is considered the best writer in world history and why a study of his works is one of the most important subjects for high school students. He will also show you creative and fun ways you can teach Shakespeare even if you don’t understand it yourself, as well as the impact Shakespeare’s writings have had on his life in other areas, besides literature.

How to Start Speech and Debate Clubs and Classes – Ray or Joshua Reish….This workshop explains how to teach speech and debate in your home, in a class, or with a newly-found club. This is the place to start if you want to introduce your attendees to speech and debate.

Teaching Beginning Debate – Ray or Joshua Reish
Ray or Joshua teaches the basics of policy debate for those interested in learning what debate is all about. Good overview of the basics of homeschool debate.

2. Additional Workshop Possibilities

We have two workshops that we do entirely on their own if someone if your group would like to host these—or if you would like parts of them done in order at your convention.

Language Arts Workshops

In addition to workshop topics, Donna (and/or Joshua) is available for an all day or half day language arts workshop. In this workshop, depending on the time available, Donna covers such topics as the following:

The grammar and composition connection—the importance of teaching grammar hand-in-hand with composition
How to teach composition
Using the Key Word Outline approach
Editing and Revising Essays
The timed essay (SAT and ACT)
How to teach language arts using an integrated approach (CQLA)
Editing sessions (in which parents bring papers for Donna to help them edit)

“Character Training From the Heart” seminar—Ray and Donna

Some of the sessions described above in the character training section come from this seminar. The entire seminar, in seven forty to fifty-minute sessions is as follows:

1.     The Five W’s of Character Training

2.     Parenting Paradigms

3.     Starting Out Right With Babies and Toddlers

4.     Early Qualities for Preschoolers

5.     Child Training vs. Heart Training

6.     Character Qualities for Elementary Ages

7.     Helping Tweens Grow in Character and Virtue

                        3. Biographical and Publishing Information

Ray and Donna Reish are the homeschooling parents of seven children, ages fourteen to thirty. Donna has written over fifty curriculum books for two publishers over the past twelve years, including, among others,  “Character Quality Language Arts” and “Meaningful Composition.” The two of them own and operate a homeschooling publishing company and cottage class provider, Training for Triumph; Christian parenting ministry/seminar, “Character Training From the Heart”; and “Positive Parenting” blog. Additionally, the couple has written a homeschooling book entitled, “The Well-Trained Heart.” They have graduated six students (as of May 2013!) who are involved in occupations, ministries, and marriages that exemplify the relational, character-based parenting and homeschooling approach that they were raised with. They live near Fort Wayne, Indiana where they test their homeschool curricula with over one hundred students every year, blog about parenting and language arts, write and publish books for homeschoolers, spend tons of time with all seven of their kids, and help homeschoolers and parents in their area in any way they can.

Donna Reish is the homeschooling mother of seven children, ages fourteen to thirty. She has written nearly fifty curriculum books for two publishers over the past twelve years, including, among others, “Character Quality Language Arts” and “Meaningful Composition.” She and her husband own and operate a homeschooling publishing company and cottage class provider, Training for Triumph; Christian parenting ministry/seminar, “Character Training From the Heart”; and “Positive Parenting” blog. Additionally, the couple has written a homeschooling book entitled, “The Well-Trained Heart.” They have graduated six students (as of May 2013!) who are involved in occupations, ministries, and marriages that exemplify the relational, character-based parenting and homeschooling approach that they were raised with. Donna and her family live near Fort Wayne, Indiana where Donna, originally trained in undergrad school in Elementary Education and grad school in Reading Education, continues to educate her seventh and final homeschooled student, teaches one hundred plus students every year in “cottage classes” to test her books, writes fiction and teaching materials with her oldest son, blogs about parenting and language arts, spends tons of time with all seven of her kids, and helps homeschoolers and parents in the area in any way she can.

Ray Reish is the homeschooling father of seven children, ages fourteen to thirty. He and his wife own and operate a homeschooling publishing company and cottage class provider, Training for Triumph; Christian parenting ministry/seminar, “Character Training From the Heart”; and “Positive Parenting” blog. Additionally, the couple has written a homeschooling book entitled, “The Well-Trained Heart.” They have graduated six students (as of May 2013!) who are involved in occupations, ministries, and marriages that exemplify the relational, character-based parenting and homeschooling approach that they were raised with. Ray does not call himself the school “principal,” but prefers for his primary title (after DAD!) to be “homeschool janitor,” teaching young fathers to be servant leaders in their homeschools. Ray and his family live near Ossian, Indiana where Ray, a CPA, works as a Materials Manager in a local plant, operates Training for Triumph, plays basketball with his four sons, ballroom dances with his wife, talks “forever” with his three adult daughters, and helps homeschoolers and parents however he can.


 Joshua Reish is the oldest child of Ray and Donna Reish. Joshua was homeschooled his entire life and graduated from homeschooling. Joshua then went on to test out of his entire college degree (BA in history) except for two classes for which there were no tests available. Joshua works with his mom writing curriculum and teaching writing classes to homeschoolers. Additionally, he is an editor for his family’s small press publisher, Training for Triumph. Besides teaching writing classes, Joshua also teaches speech, debate, US history, government, economics, literature, apologetics, world history, and more. Joshua is married to a young lady who was also homeschooled her entire life, and they make their home in Bluffton, Indiana.