Back to school! I love this time of year. New organization, new resolutions, Christmas is behind us for another year, the days will start getting longer and warmer, and Easter is my favorite holiday. All the good things are ahead!
I alternate between schedules and checklists in our homeschool. I had a schedule, with times and all, for the fall, but I decided to switch back to a checklist for some reason I no longer recall. So over the break I made new weekly checklists for the girls, which they seemed to enjoy. At least they enjoy seeing what has to be done and being able to check it off as it’s accomplished.
I even made a list for myself for Morning Time. Posting these notes each week made me realize that I was regularly forgetting some aspect of it, so why not write a list? Each day this week we:
- sang This is my Father’s World
- read Ephesians chapter 1 (each day in a different version)
- worked on catechism with Teaching Hearts, Training Minds
- reviewed previously learned Shakespeare memory work
- read By the Shores of Silver Lake
Grammar, Reading and Writing
I switched the girls back to Peace Hill Press grammar and writing. Well, Abby’s finished their grammar so we’re stuck with Rod and Staff, which I don’t love but have accepted. Emma’s going back to First Language Lessons, which I feel is more thorough than the MP recitation method. They’re both going back to Writing with Ease for composition.
Abby is reading Robin Hood for literature; I assigned The Book of Three for her other assigned reading, but she didn’t like it. I relented and gave her Call It Courage, which she read in a day or two. I gave her The Last Battle to read next. She’s also reading Ben and Me. (Remember that extra reading I was going to assign? Memoria Press kindly came out with an American History reading list for 3rd and 4th grade, so I’m making Abby read through the 4th grade list. I want Emma to do the 3rd grade list, but our stupid library doesn’t have most of the books on it.) Emma is reading Charlotte’s Web for literature and listening to The Indian in the Cupboard on CD for her other assigned reading. Ben and I read picture books every day, and he did a lesson in the phonics book each day. I think the idea of long vowel sounds is getting through. He finished his Zaner-Bloser handwriting book and started the Memoria Press copybook. (I was debating switching, and then MP sent me a gift card, so…)
One lesson a day per kid!
I’ve realized that Emma isn’t always reading her math lesson before diving into the problems, so we’re taking a few minutes right after Morning Time to go over the lesson together. Hopefully that will help.
We took a review week. I put “Latin flashcards” on their daily checklists, so hopefully that will get done more consistently. At the end of the week, Abby had a Unit Test. I still haven’t graded it, oops. Next week they’ll go on to the next new lesson.
Monday we did Christian Studies. Tuesday was Greek Myths. Wednesday Emma did States and Capitals and Abby did Famous Men of the Middle Ages. (I had abandoned that awhile ago, but changed my mind and made her resume it.) Thursday was Astronomy. Friday was History. I’ve decided we really need to focus on American history, so I’m choosing only the chapters about American history from SOTW (Vol 3) and adding in some other books to go along with it. Friday was a crazy day and we didn’t quite do all I wanted to for history. Maybe we can fit some of it in next week. But what with interruptions for taking care of the baby and the neighbor kid who came over to see if the kids could play FOUR TIMES between 10:30 and 2, it was a little tough to fit everything in.
We started with the new violin teacher this week. Wayne got off work early and came to get Ben, which made the hour and a half easier for me. As piano is now on checklists, I believe the girls both practiced every day. I did a lesson with Emma on Friday but didn’t have time to go over Abby’s with her. Shall I push that into tomorrow, too? Oy.
The girls are doing homeschool strings again this semester. They were horribly disappointed to learn they’ve been assigned to second violin parts. I can’t convince them that anything good could come from such a position.
I finished The Liberal Arts Tradition. Very theoretical, and directed more to a school setting, but still some good things. I also read some Chesterton – The Man Who Knew Too Much and The Man Who Was Thursday. Sort of annoyed by the ending of that last one. And then last night I read The Hunger Games. Abby has been asking to read it for ages, and my sister said that she’d read it and was going to allow her daughter to read it…so I caved. I read the dumb book with bitterness in my heart, because of the time it took away from reading the things I actually want to read, the list of which, as I may have mentioned, is kind of long. At any rate, the writing is terrible, full of short, choppy sentences and written on an alarmingly low reading level. Is this all that the teenagers in this country can read? The story did suck me in, I admit. I read the whole thing last night and Abby read the whole thing this afternoon. I suppose now she’ll be after me to read the next one.
Linking up at The Wine Dark Sea.