2014 Convention Information & Procedures
The 31st Annual CHEA Convention promises to be one of the most exciting homeschool Conventions around, with many new and unique attractions and a return to the Disneyland® Hotel. Our goal, as always, is to provide you with the resources you need to train your children, and give you a quality event with an atmosphere that glorifies God. We continue to offer the popular Used Curriculum Exchange, the Exhibit Hall with nearly 200 booths, exhibitor workshops, and great speakers. This year CHEA is also hosting a free Mini Conference for New Homeschoolers, a National Mock Trial Tournament, a Homeschool Graduation, a Children’s Convention, and a Teen Convention. Also in the works this year is a special showing of a Kirk Cameron film, hosted by Kirk himself.
It is important that you read the information provided here to help you navigate the wealth of information related to the operation and benefits associated with the Convention. By registering for this event you are signifying that you have read and agree to abide by the Convention Information and Procedures for this event.
Additional Family Members are adult students, other adult members of the household who participate in the home education process, or children under 12 not attending the Children's Convention. Children in this category are welcome in all sessions as space permits. We encourage families with children to take advantage of the reserved seating in the back of the room. Also, children must be accompanied by a parent at all times during the event. Individual families must register separately, even if they share a residence.
The wristband is your admission ticket to all areas of the Convention. Wristbands are for the sole use of the registered attendee and may not be transferred or shared. All registered adults will get one color wristband for Friday and a different color for Saturday. All Additional Family Members, including teens, children, or other adults, will wear the same color as their parents/registered adult. Teens registered for the Teen Convention will have a different color than their parents—one color for Friday and a different color for Saturday. Children registered for the Children’s Convention and their parents will get additional ID wristbands from the Children’s Convention.
Audio or video taping of the Convention sessions is prohibited. Audio recordings of most Convention workshops* may be purchased at the on-site CHEA Audio Store. For easy ordering and reference you will find the CD order number on the workshop grid in the Convention Program. Individual CDs are $6 each or buy five and get the sixth free. For the best deal, purchase a two-CD set containing all available workshops (in MP3 format) for $99 or already loaded on an MP3 player for $119. After the Convention, a limited quantity of CDs will be available through the CHEA office; and a few will be available for purchase as downloadable MP3s. Exhibitor workshops are not recorded.
*For workshops not available at CHEA’s Audio Store (see the workshop grid) contact the speaker.
Please turn off all cell phones and pagers (or on silent/vibrate mode) so you will not disturb the speaker, other attendees, and session recording. If you receive a call during the session, please wait until the session is over or leave the room to answer the call. Parents with children attending the Children’s Convention must place their cell phone on vibrate so Children’s Convention staff can contact you if needed but not interrupt other Convention activities.
If you wish to make any changes to your registration, please go to the Registration Assistance booth.
Be sure to visit the CHEA Bookstore in the Grand Ballroom Lobby where a wealth of resources is available. Purchasing at the Convention saves on shipping charges, and CHEA Members receive a 10% discount on all purchases at the CHEA Bookstore.
For the second year, there are plans in the works to have a CHEA Convention App that would give you instant access to the Convention schedule, workshop descriptions, list of exhibitors, exhibit hall floor plan, and much more! Details coming soon.
Pick up your wristbands and other materials at the Pre-registration check-in counter. Pre-registration check-in opens at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday.
All children (ages 4 - 11) must either be registered for the Children's Convention or as an Additional Family Member. Seating is limited in all meeting rooms. We ask parents with children to take advantage of the reserved seating in the back of the room. Children three and under may accompany their parents. We recommend stroller use for the Exhibit Hall, but that you park strollers outside of meeting rooms due to space limitations and Fire Marshall Regulations. Strollers may never be left in aisles or walkways.
If children are pre-registered for the Children’s Convention, they are checked in at the Magic Kingdom Ballrooms 1 & 4 beginning at 8:00 a.m. on Friday and Saturday. No lunch is provided. Children will need to be picked up for lunch at 12:30 p.m. and returned by 1:30 p.m. If you would like your child to have any snacks during the day, you will need to provide them. If your children are not pre-registered, visit Registration in the Grand Ballroom Lobby first.
All children attending the Children’s Convention must have a completed medical release form when checking in at the Children’s Convention. When registering online, just read and then check the medical release agreement box until you arrive at the event, at which time you will be asked for your signature. If you pre-register or register through any other means, you will need to provide a printed/signed medical release form before you can leave your children at the Children’s Convention. The form can be printed from the CHEA website in advance to save time at the event.
CHEA can be reached during the event by calling a special information telephone number. This phone number is (714) 284-6001: Thursday, May 29, noon to 8:30 p.m., Friday, May 30, 7:00 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., Saturday, May 31, 7:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
The presence of a particular speaker or exhibitor at this Convention does not constitute an endorsement of their product or service or imply that a comprehensive evaluation of specific products or services has been made by CHEA. CHEA endeavors to present speakers and exhibitors whose materials are compatible with biblical principles, and our first choice is always to have Christians presenting these materials. However, if a speaker or exhibitor has material which would be beneficial to home educators, their participation is not restricted because they may not subscribe to specific religious doctrines. If you have convictions about doing business with non-Christians or are uncertain about the content of specific material, please clarify this with the individual speaker or exhibitor before making your purchase or signing a contract for services.
Come to the Convention early or stay extra days for the magic. Specially-priced Disneyland® Resort Theme Park tickets are available to Convention attendees. The link to purchase tickets will be available 60 days before the CHEA Convention, per Disneyland® policy. These special ticket prices will not be available once you arrive at the Resort. Click here for a PDF of price comparisons. Watch our Connection e-News for the opening date and link to purchase tickets.
Staying at the Disneyland® Hotel is sure to enhance your Convention experience, but the number of rooms in CHEA’s room block will go quickly, so be sure to reserve your room early. You must be attending the CHEA Convention in order to receive our great room rate; the hotel reserves the right to ask for proof of Convention registration. To ensure we are good guests of our hosts the Disneyland® Hotel and that you have a good hotel experience, the hotel has asked our guests to observe the following: When making your reservation, be sure to correctly identify how many people of all ages will be in your room. There is a maximum limit of five persons regardless of age in each guest room. Asking for bedding for more than five or sleeping bags being observed in the room may result in the hotel asking you to pay for an additional room. Note also the hotel will ask for a credit card and identification upon check in. Use of Bell Services other than for baggage to and from your guest room, will result in a per parcel fee. Ask the cost before accepting service.
Earn bonuses by pre-registering early! Take advantage of Early Bird Pre-registration and receive these bonuses: 6 free workshop CDs; 5 additional Ultimate Giveaway tickets; and receive the absolute earliest Used Curriculum Exchange tickets. To qualify, pre-register by the midnight March 2 deadline.
The Exhibit Hall features displays from a variety of curriculum suppliers, resource companies, and cottage industries for browsing, making purchases, or placing orders. All exhibit booths are located on one floor this year, the main floor of the Disneyland® Hotel. Exhibits are open Thursday, 6:00-9:00 p.m. as well as Friday and Saturday from 10:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. To attend the Thursday evening Exhibit Hall, an attendee needs to be registered for at least Friday or Saturday, or qualify for the special one-hour preview by attending the Free Introduction to Home Education session. Saturday it is open to all graduation ticket holders.
Please shop our Exhibitors: Our exhibitors are an important part of our Convention. While you may be able to find some of the items in our Exhibit Hall at a discount through catalogs or used curriculum resources, consider the added service value provided by our on-site exhibitors. They have gone to great effort and expense to set up materials for your examination and spend many hours providing knowledgeable information about their products. If you take their time and reap the benefits of their knowledge, please reward them with your purchase.
These special workshops provide a close-up look at specific products and companies. Exhibitors will highlight the benefits of their products and demonstrate how to use them most effectively. Be sure to check out the workshop descriptions. These workshops are available Friday and Saturday at the Disneyland® Hotel Adventure Tower. See the Exhibitor Workshop Schedule or Exhibitors list for the companies represented. Your Convention Program will also have a complete schedule. Please note that Exhibitor Workshops are not recorded.
There will be a special collection during the Friday morning General Session to support the work of Family Protection Ministries. We encourage you to come prepared to make a generous contribution to our partners in this vital work of protecting and defending parental rights in California. All checks should be made out to FPM (no credit cards).
Major injuries or illnesses should be reported to the Information booth immediately. Bandages, aspirin, and other over-the-counter medications are available in the hotel gift shops.
Patronizing the concession areas helps CHEA meet its financial obligations to the Disneyland® Hotel. No outside food or drink is allowed inside the Disneyland® Hotel according to Disneyland® Hotel policies. Visit the concessions and restaurants throughout the hotel, visit nearby restaurants particularly in Downtown Disney, or eat a sack lunch on the grounds. Do not bring sack lunches inside the hotel buildings. Please help us maintain our Christian witness to the hotel staff by obeying the rules. For local restaurant information, check Disneyland® Hotel signs and directories. For nearby attractions, information will be available at the CHEA Information booth in the Grand Ballroom Lobby, or on our website.
A free session, an Introduction to Home Education, will be provided Thursday, 6:35 p.m.-8:00 p.m. in the Center Ballroom. This session can be attended on its own or as part of our Free Mini-Conference. See information later in this document. Invite your skeptical family and friends to this informative session. After the session, attendees will receive complimentary Exhibit Hall attendance for the remainder of Thursday evening (does not include access on Friday or Saturday). Paid registration is required for all other parts of the Convention.
Each registered family will receive access to a link with hundreds of dollars worth of free curriculum, discount coupons, and other resources. This “Gift Basket” link will be found elsewhere in this Convention program. Attendees can access this site as often as they want as more material is placed on the website. You can even scan the announcement’s barcode with your smart phone and see the material instantly. Also, a free Literature Bag is distributed to each registered family, and is full of information about resources to help you in your home education endeavors.
We know it can be very disappointing when you can't get into the session you were looking forward to hearing. We do the best we can to select appropriate room size for speakers. Please understand that if you are turned away by a room host/hostess it is due to Fire Marshall Regulations, which do not allow sitting on the floor or standing in the back. We suggest you choose an alternate workshop in advance, get to the room early, and if all else fails, order the audio from the CHEA Audio Store. Thank you for your understanding and patience.
A facility map can be found on the website and will be included in your Convention Program.
CHEA will host a CHEA Graduation Ceremony Saturday at 5:30 p.m. This session is open to our participating graduates, their families, and their guests. Registered Convention attendees are invited as space permits.
Keynote Speakers this year are Kirk Cameron, homeschool dad, actor, filmmaker; The Money Smart Family Steve and Annette Economides; and Dr. Brian Ray of the National Home Education Research Institute (NHERI). Our Featured Speaker is Andrew Pudewa, popular author and speaker from Institute for Excellence in Writing.
No unauthorized literature may be distributed in any area of the Convention. Only items preapproved by CHEA may be displayed. If you are approached by a solicitor anywhere outside the Exhibit Hall, please report it to the Information booth or to a CHEA Convention volunteer.
Items left in workshop sessions or in the Convention area may be left or picked up at the Information booth until the close of the Convention Saturday evening. Items not claimed will be left with hotel Security.
A new feature this year is a free Mini Conference May 29 from 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. featuring Keynote Speaker Dr. Brian Ray. He will speak from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. (Central Ballroom, Disneyland® Hotel,) on "Just the Facts, Ma'am: Homeschooling Works." Paid registration is required for all other parts of the Convention.
After the Keynote Session, attend the Introduction to Home Education free session from 6:35 to 8:00 p.m. (Center Ballroom) and free entry for an Exhibit Hall Preview from 8:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Attendees may attend either or both of the first two sessions (Keynote, Intro Session), but in order to participate in the third session (Exhibit Hall Preview), attendees must attend part 2, the Free Introduction to Home Education Session.
Mock trial is a competitive academic sport for high school and middle school students that teaches them important legal concepts and gives them the ability to learn about the US legal system and the Constitution, hone their speaking abilities, and apply logic in a challenging competitive setting. This is a tremendous academic program in which the need for dynamic homeschool teams is great.
The National Homeschool Mock Trial Tournament will be held at the 2014 CHEA Convention May 29-30 at the Disneyland® Hotel. Teams of 8 to 18 students will analyze the case of People v. Chatham and compete for exciting and significant academic prizes.
Mock Trial offers roles for students with a wide variety of interests and abilities and is uniquely well suited for homeschooled students. Please join us and be part of this exciting opportunity to learn from Christian attorneys and leaders in the homeschooling community. For more information about starting or registering a team for the competition, please contact Sarah Winkle at SarahWinkle@me.com. Deadline to enter a team is May 1.
A small nursing mother’s room will be located in the Adventure Tower, the Oasis Room. There will be tables and a few regular chairs. No other furniture or baby items supplied.
There are fees to park at the Disneyland® Hotel. If you are NOT staying overnight at the hotel: to assist the Disneyland® Hotel parking attendants to keep the parking lines moving quickly, please identify yourself as a CHEA Convention Attendee by printing and displaying the CHEA Attendee Placard visibly on your dashboard. The attendants will be able to direct you more quickly and keep the lines moving. This placard does not provide free parking. Parking for a fee is also available at the nearby Disneyland® Theme Park parking garage.
By attending this event, you agree to allow your photo to be taken and printed in CHEA’s print or media materials.
All Silver, Gold, and Platinum Members should check in at the Membership booth in the Grand Ballroom Lobby. Priority check-in begins at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday. Premium Members are invited to attend an exclusive preview of the Exhibit Hall and the Used Curriculum Exchange on Thursday from 5:00-6:00 p.m.
Children who are three or under may attend the Convention with their parents. Children four to 11 must either be registered for the Children’s Convention ($35 per day per child) or as an Additional Family Member ($25 per child per day). See rules for children in the Convention. Parents of preschoolers, who have never attended a CHEA event, are invited to attend one day of the Convention free. This offer applies to parents whose oldest child is five years and under and applies to both husband and wife. Your one-day free registration also allows you to visit the Exhibit Hall Grand Opening Thursday from 6:00–9:00 p.m. We also recommend you attend the free Mini Conference Thursday beginning at 5:30 p.m. The one day free pre-registration for parents of preschoolers is available by telephone to the CHEA office (562-864-2432) by 4:00 p.m. April 21, 2014.
One Convention program, including the schedule and workshop descriptions, will be available for each pre-registered family. At-the-door registrants receive programs as available.
There are no refunds. We must contract for and reserve space in advance, therefore we cannot issue refunds.
Your individual registration fee allows your spouse to attend without charge, but registration is required. Just check the appropriate box on your registration form and provide your spouse’s name. All other family members must pay the appropriate registration fees.
For information regarding CHEA Support Network Groups, private school satellite program (PSPs), and CHEA’s Support Network services, visit the Support Network booth located in the Grand Ballroom Lobby. A complete list of CHEA’s Support Network groups is available on our website as well..
Syllabus pages from participating speakers are posted on the CHEA website in the workshop description section. No copies will be available onsite. These will be available for a short time after the Convention as well.
All American citizens, including teens, need to be savvy about our governmental processes. This year’s Teen Convention hosts HSLDA’s Generation Joshua and its iAdvocate program, featuring interactive activities that simulate what a legislator encounters when he or she tries to draft and advocate legislation. Participants will have to choose between competing priorities such as personal legislative goals, the goals of his or her party, and the professional agreements he or she has made with other participants. Participants will start with drafting legislation in a small committee, and will progress to an official legislative session where they will have the chance to debate and vote on their legislation. Expect a lively and exciting program.
Only teens (12-18) registered for the Teen Convention are permitted in the teen workshops. At other times of the day, teens can attend Keynote sessions and visit the Exhibit Hall. CHEA will provide volunteer adult chaperones for the Teen Convention; however parents are responsible for their teen’s safety and behavior during the Convention. We recommend that parents and teens read over the Convention materials together, select workshops, and arrange meeting times and locations. In consideration of all in attendance we request teens follow these basic guidelines:
- Wear modest, casual clothing
- Remain seated during the sessions
- Do not loiter outside the rooms during sessions
- Be attentive to the speaker
- Turn off cell phones
- No texting during sessions
To help your teens have the best experience:
- Review your program schedule with your teen so you can be found if needed.
- Have lunch together.
- Arrange to meet with your teen often during the day.
Teens will wear one color wristband for Friday and another color for Saturday; the wristbands will be included in the parents' packet at check-in.
No medical release is needed for Teens attending the Teen Convention.
Win an iPad Mini. Adult attendees will visit each Exhibitor or Convention booth listed on the special Treasure Hunt playing card provided in your registration materials, listen to their presentation, and get your card validated. Once all squares on the card are validated, turn your card in at the Information booth. A card will be chosen at random during the Ultimate Giveaway Saturday night from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m. in the Center Ballroom. One lucky person will win an iPad Mini. You must be present at the drawing to win. Adults must listen to the Exhibitor presentation and get the card validated.
Prizes may include curriculum, resources, a CHEA Platinum Membership, restaurant gift certificates, hotel accommodations, and more. You must be present to win beginning Saturday at 7:30 p.m. Tickets will be awarded for: Registration (1); being pre-registered (1); being a CHEA Member (1); and having at least one child/teen registered (1 ticket regardless of how many children/teens registered). Earn 5 additional tickets during the Early Bird Pre-Registration period which ends March 2. Premium Members receive an additional ticket/s: Silver (1), Gold (2), and Platinum (3). Tickets will be included in your materials at check in and need to be deposited at the door no later than 7:45 p.m. Saturday evening.
Thousands of used books, textbooks, teaching aids, and other homeschooling items will be available at the annual Used Curriculum Exchange in Magic Kingdom 3. Attendees are admitted by ticket Thursday night, in groups by ticket number (beginning with the lowest numbers). Announcements by the PA system in the Exhibit Hall will let you know when your ticket number is coming up. A ticket does not guarantee entrance Thursday night. Tickets are not needed Friday and Saturday. Tickets are assigned first come, first served, so the earlier you register the lower your ticket number. Be sure to request your Used Curriculum ticket during the pre-registration process.
Thursday evening from 5:00-6:00 p.m. is open only to CHEA Silver, Gold, and Platinum Members. Check the Convention schedule for the UCE hours of operation. (Note Saturday’s hours are abbreviated.)
Join the team. An event of this size depends on the help of a huge team of volunteers. Volunteers are urgently needed to help with the Convention. Those who volunteer for one session or more will receive a CD voucher for each session worked. To volunteer, please contact the volunteer coordinators Logan and Pam Bechtol by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also visit the Volunteer booth in the Grand Ballroom Lobby.
Because of safety and congestion problems created by the proliferation of wheeled items in the Convention facility, only small rolling suitcases will be permitted. Wagons, other four-wheel vehicles, rolling crates, or two-wheeled “shopping” carts will not be permitted. Wheeled units must be kept next to attendee when viewing curriculum or conversing with others.
A complete schedule and listing of sessions to date is available on the website and will be included in your Convention program at the event. You should arrive early at each session and make alternate selections in case your first choice is full. Don’t forget audio recordings are available as well at the CHEA Audio Store.