Sunday, February 22, 2015

Year 2, We've just finished Week 27

     My last post was in January!  It's been quite busy here, as usual.  I think next year I may have to take a different approach to how I blog about our school year.  I just don't know what that is yet.  It seems that as I tutor for Classical Conversations and homeschool the kids (let's not forget their extra curricular activities and my domestic duties too) that I barely have time to read a magazine let alone blog (FYI, I still have a Christmas issue to read.  Just in time for this December)!  I have a stack of homeschool books, Christian books, and "just for fun" books piling up on my coffee table too.  The good thing is that we only have 9 more weeks of school and then I can take, oh about a week or possible two, to read the 10 books I have and then plan next year's curriculum.

     Yes, next year I definitely need to change the way I blog.

     Over past few weeks we finished reading Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (the book we had  a copyright of 1929!) and began Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There.  My daughter loves the stories; my son, not so much.  As for me, I find Alice a bit annoying!  The "curiouser and curiouser" thing about it is that coincidentally my daughter will be in a Spring production of Alice in Wonderland, playing the role of Small Alice.  Have you ever watched Disney's animated Alice in Wonderland?  We did after we finished the first book.  If you've ever read both the books, you'd know that the movie is really an odd combination of both books.

     We're also completed reading about Milton Hershey.  It's a fascinating story.  I chose it because, well, we love chocolate and I thought it would be an interesting read.  Plus, I timed it so that we would finish it close to Valentine's Day.  His is a great story of the rewards of determination and hard work coupled with compassion and vision.  Even my husband was intrigued by it.  I highly recommend it.

     In CC, we wrapped up chemical experiments and our study of great artists, from Grandma Moses to Jim Davis.  The kids even got to create their own comic strip.  It was great to see what the kids came up with for their art projects.

     I think that's it or at least that's all I can remember from the past few weeks.  I'm off to try and read a book, despite the fact that laundry is beckoning me!

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Year 2, Week 21

     Happy New Year and happy back to school!  We are back on track with homeschooling and Classical Conversations.  For those of you interested in Classical Conversations, this is the month to start checking for Open Houses or informational meetings in your area.  Next month will be the time to sign up and register and if homeschooling is growing, much like our community did from when we first started (It went from two groups to 7!) then you're going to want to get informed and get signed up asap.  You can look for a community close to you by clicking here.  If you'd like information from a tutor's perspective, feel free to post questions in the Comments section and I will answer them as best as I can.

     The New Year brought some changes in our homeschooling routine.  I use a mix of the Charlotte Mason method and Classical Education in our homeschooling, so in order to really nail in the kids' memory work from CC, they read what I've written on the board and then copy it down.  For all the subjects in CC except math, I've either created or found a double-sided sheet for them to do their work.  (This gets placed in a notebook which I'll share later on.)  They would do one side on one day and the other side later on in the week.  History and English would be done on Monday and Wednesdays, Latin and Science on Tuesdays and Thursdays, leaving Geography and review on Fridays.

    However, the kids would often jump ahead and just complete both sides.  This would also, unbeknownst to them, make their school day longer.  So, I changed it so that they complete both sides of the copywork/worksheet on one scheduled day instead of coming back to it later in the week.  This also made it easier for me (and them) to track what was done or still needed to be done.  Now our schedule now looks like this:

Monday:  English Grammar
Tuesday:  History
Wednesday:  Latin
Thursday:  Geography
Friday:  Science and Review

     It's more streamlined and they're done with all their work earlier.  Applause all around!

     Week 21 we also finished our reading of The Wind in the Willows.  My kids LOVED this story, even more so than Peter Pan, which we finished prior to this book.  I don't think I ever read The Wind in the Willows, or at least I don't remember reading it, but we thoroughly enjoyed it.  This is just another reason why I love English Lessons Through Literature by Kathy Jo Devore.  I like that we get to read great classics together and that the kids' work comes directly from the books we read.  My kids even put on a skit for their dad showing him one of their favorite parts of the book.

     That's about it for now.  I'll be back soon, hopefully!


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

100th Day of Homeschooling!

     Last year, with one child in public school and one child in homeschool, both kids had different things going on that the other wished they could participate in.  Things as big as field trips or as little as the 100th day of school.  With that in mind, I had planned on celebrating our halfway point (last post) and our 100th day of school, which happened to be today.  It's raining right now, and after a meeting I had this morning, we decided to kick off our celebration by ordering pizza for lunch when we got home.  My kids said it was the best pizza EVER!

     Then for dinner, since we're such carnivores, we decided to treat ourselves to Ruth's Chris Steak House.  We all wanted a good steak and this particular location had just opened up very close to us, so we went for it.  It was a nice (pricey) dinner, but the kids felt really special and frankly, I needed something special too.

     This also marks our 20th week of school.  Last week was our last meeting for Classical Conversations before the Christmas break.  Before bidding farewell to our community until after the New Year, we had a joyous time at the annual Family Christmas party.  All the kids showed off their knowledge of our history timeline and each class played a tune on their tin whistles.  My class played part of Jingle Bells.  They did a wonderful job.  All the kids did!

     That's about it for now.  Can you tell I'm ready for our break to begin?  This is our last week of homeschooling until everything, (CC plus our homeschooling schedule) begins again after the New Year.  I.  Am.  So.  Ready.
     So, have yourselves a merry little Christmas and may you ring in the New Year surrounded by love, food and merriment and may blessings be poured out upon you and yours!