Today I stumbled across an old forum post that I wrote about this time last year. I hope I’m not too late to join the party! The Princess, is my “spirited” four year old. Night and day scholastic comparison to her sister (my six year old accelerated student, finishing second grade) so it is quite the adventure to try to understand her. We have been using Preschool, then SC:A-C. With the older, it was checkbox it all and keep trekking. With the Princess, we have two good days and then she refuses it all and prefers disruption and drama. I’ve given up on structure with her for now. We pick and choose from the read aloud lists on the levels I mentioned. She also is working on the A-I workbooks after the other A-D series also from R&S in addition to Alphabet Books, Numbers Books, and FSR. She has lost. . .
Do you even have to ask to know that this Creative Madness Mama absolutely adores materials from the people behind Memoria Press? In addition to teaching my own children on their level, I am also slowly working myself through the upper levels of material in continuing my own Classical Christian Education. Right now, I am delighted to have started a portion of the eighth grade Classical History curriculum. Thanks to the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, I am able to review Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set, a set of The Iliad & The Odyssey curriculum from Memoria Press which makes up the plans for Classical History in the second semester of a planned eighth grade year. Check back in my archives to read my review on The Book of the Ancient Romans & The Aeneid (review before the release of the teaching DVDs) and the Lesson Plans scheduled for a. . .
What do you think it is about February that gets the brain thinking ahead toward the next school year? While this post is intended to be a planning ahead details for what we will do in the next school year, at the same time, I suppose, it is also a what’s up from what’s working and what’s not from the current school year. Hmm… or maybe this should be two posts? I guess I will just start typing and see how things work out in the end. The 2016-2017 school year for us included an advanced seven-year-old book loving third grader and a spirited attention-span of a butterfly fresh kindergartener with not a lick of interest in school. While we started enrolled in a partially online, partially at-home, distance-learning style accredited program – the entire experience was abysmal. Veritas Press, the publisher, has awesome curricula and we will continue to buy. . .
In 2011, I added a second child to the mix and my toddler was antsy to get more attention in addition to being a little mama. We dabbled a bit with a book box curriculum of good nursery readers, however, it was in 2012-2013 that our Memoria Press adventure started. At the age of three, my book loving daughter started in on our K3 Junior Kindergarten with an extremely wonderful year that we still look back on with extremely fond memories. In 2013-2014, it was our K4 year and our curriculum was the Memoria Press Classical Core Curriculum for Kindergarten. In 2014, I added a third child to the mix. At this time, my next toddler was not ready for anything officially school related and she continue to tag along in read alouds and child play becoming the princess she is today. Around this time, Memoria Press started beta releasing their Simply. . .
My plotting and planning for homeschooling my kiddos has been years in effort. One of my earliest purchases has been a set of the McGuffey Eclectic Readers. I have them, but we’ve never really had a plan about how to go about using them, that is until now with the addition of Eclectic Foundations Language Arts program to our curriculum pile. Thanks to the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, we were blessed with a set of Eclectic Foundations Language Arts Level C materials for review. I am utilizing these with my third grade daughter. She is an excellent reader, and reads all the time, but does not like to read aloud to others much at all and this is a skill that I have always planned to use the McGuffey readers to enhance and strengthen. Eclectic Foundations is giving me the tools to do so efficiently! This language arts curriculum is. . .
This year has prompted many new things, especially in math skills for my third grade daughter. When we started the year she was working on a fourth grade math level, and learning the beginning basics of multiplication. She is doing well, but I was excited to jump into the possibility of a review product for enhancing her skills to learn multiplication facts. Through the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, we were granted a three month subscription to Times Tables the Fun Way from Times Alive. In this subscription, we have three months to utilize the program to teach multiplication. I’ve found after my daughter completed the 18 lessons within two weeks this may be one of the best ways to learn multiplication and teach times tables, indeed! We “bought” the account and registered and were given special login information. Interesting, and one of the first things to note is that. . .
We must make some changes. This is spun from a text I sent to a friend, but I would love more advice from many of you seasoned mamas. Basically without getting too many names involved, where we live we either have to be in an umbrella, or distance learning private school, or with the county. For my oldest, we have chosen to have her in a distance learning private school which was great until they changed all the requirements this year the day before classes officially began. It has been a stressful nightmare. It is no longer homeschool but school at home with crazy busy work and deadlines that just don’t work. My daughter is seven, working mostly at a third grade level in fifth grade math. With certain things she needs a bit more time but can do it. But with their new deadlines it doesn’t matter and no. . .
In the past few months I have noticed a drastic change in our homeschool. It was stressing me out. Actually, I’m pretty sure it was stressing all of us out. I realized that we were having a stress-filled homeschool and I needed to stop re-evaluate and possibly take a break. In truth, we have been homeschooling for about five years now, as we started when AppleBlossom was quite young and vying for educational inspiration and exploration. We jumped right in, and I couldn’t keep up with her thirst for knowledge and budding learning skills. Teaching her has been a delight and looking forward to learning more and going deeper has been a dream to contemplate. But that is not how the last few months, or school year, has played out… There are quite a few new elements. Toddler Rascal brother in the background as well as five-year-old attention span of. . .
My oldest daughter has long said that she desires to be an artist when she grows up. She specifically wants to be a painter, but to use all sorts of mediums. Lately, she has discovered writing and asked if she could be an author. When I told her she could be both, she had glitter in her eyes with the possibilities and excitement. While we are trying to education in a Classical Christian Education manner in our homeschool, I often am trying to find ways to bring in art to let her work her artistic muscles and pursue her dreams. Art is a broad and important part of life, and fostering artistic expression in kids sets them on a positive path, whether it’s hobbyist, professional, as an outlet or pure aesthetic expression. The common thread is that it is creative, expressive, it can inspire us, and lead to. . .
Lately, I am doing a bit of upkeep behind the scenes on the blog. Pretty much our Christmas gifts have been purchased and this year it is my oldest that is getting the big gifts. Under the tree when we get to Grandmama’s house she will discover the first box of a Little Passports subscription to Science Expeditions as well as a second envelope containing the first package of a subscription to Discover the Little Passports USA Edition. So while I’m updating my affiliate links and banners, right now I’m seeing all the excitement and secretly knowing how delighted she will be to open those packages in the next few weeks!
While quite often we use a full curriculum, every once in a while we really want to focus on something to firmly learn a skill. This is one of the things that I adore about The Critical Thinking Co.™ and I have found myself super excited about their brand new Sentence Diagramming: Beginning (Grades: 3-12+) book. We have been doing lesson after lesson and really enjoying ourselves as well as learning and firming our language art skills previously worked on in the past as well. For the purposes of this review, we received a 68-page paperback 8×11″ book with 12 lessons through out on a beginning level. I believe there will also be a next level 1 and level 2 books available soon if they are not already available. Last year, we worked with another of their language arts books featuring Fun-Time Phonics!. In this review period, there are other homeschool families. . .