Thursday, September 20, 2007

Thinking Aloud

By the way, thanks to you readers who leave comments on this play by play blog of mine. It is always fun to read the responses and to see what others are doing. You probably have noticed that my other blogs are standing mostly deserted. I am really enjoying this detailed log of what we do in a day,.... plus it helps me keep track of things I might not even notice otherwise. Since I'm trying to limit my internet time, that seems to be all the blogging I have time for. Those of you who comment on here, I regularly read your blogs --motivating to read other moms' homeschooling notes.

Now for the overview, since tomorrow is Day 20. I realize that most of what we have been doing all this time is review, really. Certainly we haven't come to any new territory in Math yet. In Latin, however, I am thinking we are getting a bit bogged down by all the half-memorized declensions, and may need to slow down a bit. I have this review sheet which I add to as we come to new parts.

Greek has a lot of review built-in -- it moves sloowwly. And we've barely gotten off the ground yet on Humanities, though Kieron is picking up steam now. Sean is moving more slowly, partly because of his chronic pain issues. I want him to really get the Algebra down well, and the Latin. He is not giving off the discovery-oriented ambience that Kieron is.... probably the difference in ages, plus temperament. Sean has always liked to engage very practically, and if he doesn't get to do that, he rushes through the material and remembers little of it, so I am trying to find a style that suits him and slows him down. Plus he is transitioning into the high school years, which means more of a focus on method and independent work. So anyway, we haven't gotten to full speed with his work yet.

Looking through various resources today, I finally decided to use Discovery of New Worlds by MB Synge for Kieron as a sort of history spine. The other book I'd like to go through slowly during the year, CM -style, is Knights of Art: Stories of the Italian Painters. And finally, Beautiful Stories from Shakespeare (unless I decide it is really too lightweight for his age and go to Lamb's Shakespeare -- but I had intended to use that one for Sean as an intro to reading some of the actual plays). All of these seem to tie together with our movement from the Romans to the Renaissance, and of course they will be expanded with other resources.

The last one is English Literature for Boys and Girls. This may take two years. At Ambleside it's used for middle and early high school but to me it has a youthful tone. Sean read some of it last year but I don't think he will continue it this year.

These are all printed-out books -- not as pretty as real bound books, but less expensive and you can write on them with less guilt. I have a comb binder so with some colored duct tape for the spine I end up with something reasonably solid and readable. Not as nice as a beautiful hardcover, but not too much worse than a mass market paperback.

Kierons' science ---- related to our geography --- biomes, habitats, weather, physical geography, and a variety of projects and field studies and nature drawings-- he enjoys everything along those lines.

I'd like to have Sean's work mesh with this somewhat -- but I truthfully haven't pinned this down yet. For both of them, I want to focus on British literature. There are so many authors who represent literary history in themselves and have also covered history in their retellings and novels. Charlotte Yonge, Rudyard Kipling, Howard Pyle, Charles Kingsley, Sir Walter Scott, Andrew Lang, Roger Lancelyn Green, Padraic Colum, Tolkien (translation of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight), CS Lewis, Ian Serraillier who retold Beowulf which Sean reread last year ----- not to mention the Lambs and E Nesbit -- the list just goes on and on. And that's just the prose, and not even mentioning Shakespeare, and the artists who painted historical or classical or mythological scenes. The poets are a whole other area.

So the literature will be a matter of selection -- so many possibilities.

It's Sean's subject "spines" that are the problem. Maybe an almost high schooler could use primary sources only, and a timeline and historical encyclopedia. But that seems like a lot of work for me to plan, and he mentally discards information when he doesn't see where it's going. So an overview would be helpful. Hmm, still thinking. Since he did a version of Ambleside 8 last year, maybe he can pick up with a Catholicized version of AO -9 this year. ..right now I don't seem to have the perfect solution in all these books we already have around the house. Or maybe compile the House of Education geography resources and biographies and primary sources, and just get by with that.

The older boys focused on Ancient History at this age, and Clare took US History. I wonder why I am reinventing the wheel... but Sean, I think, would get more out of the ancient classics if we waited a year. Still thinking this through... but at least science is set, and the 3Rs.

As for the little ones -- no formal science or history, yet. Religion, literature and music and art and very basic 3Rs. These things also lighten the atmosphere here and seem to make life more interesting for Kieron, too.

No comments:

Post a Comment