Sunday, August 14, 2016

Virtue Formation through Literature

One of my favorite things is spending our morning time reading books that help form my daughter's ideals about good and bad character.  Reading a book that clearly demonstrates virtue or clearly shows a character lacking in virtue, is a great discussion to have in those quiet morning hours.  Using literature to help with virtue formation is a very seamless way to approach a topic that is often caught more than taught.  Let me share some of my favorite books for helping with virtue formation…

Friday, August 5, 2016

When Nature Isn't Beautiful

"Isn't nature always beautiful, Mom?"..."Then why did the eggs get killed?"  I realized then and there, that I've spent much of our nature studies over the years on the beauty of creation.  Always referring to how beautiful nature was, as if it was whole. Enough.  The fact that the flowers are brilliant in color, complex in design, filled with wonderful variety and math abounding.  Discussing the perfect balances of water cycles, life cycles, contemplating in wonder and awe, the number of creatures created, and their intricate designs -perfectly suited for the job God had created them to fulfill.  We have talked about the lessons of weeds in a garden and how they relate to the sin of man and we've discussed why Jesus used so many analogies to nature and natural processes.  However, we never discussed the cruel side of nature.  That side of nature that makes you cringe as a beautiful zebra is taken down by a lion or a bird's eggs are abandoned in a nest, never to see the first sunrise or set.  How do we approach the parts of nature that aren't beautiful and why are they so?  Let's explore...

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Schole' Moments - Curriculum Paradigm Shift

As homeschooling parents, we can get caught up in spending too much time going to homeschool conferences, doing online research reading reviews, or frequenting our local curriculum stores; trying to decide what curriculum our children need for the school year.  There are a lot of things out there vying for our attention and trying to convince us that we must do this or that in order for our student to "keep up" with other students or be a "STEM" student.  All that curriculum "sell" is just begging for us to feel discontent, like we're not doing enough, like we fall short, and like we have to add one more thing to our student's curriculum list for the next year so they won't be handicapped for life. It's just a great way to stress ourselves (and our students) out.

I have had a life changing shift in my paradigm related to curriculum that has set me free. Let me help you make a shift in your paradigm about curriculum too.  What if I told you that the curriculum itself doesn't truly matter, but more so what you do with the curriculum that does?  I know, I know, it seems like I just committed some homeschooling atrocity to say that curriculum doesn't really matter.  I imagine the homeschooling police are being notified right now, as to my heretical statement.   However, let me explain....

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Science Activity - Picture of the Day

A science "picture of the day" is a terrific tool for helping students to begin to analyze information and think critically.  It is also another tool to begin to teach the scientific method skills of observation, hypotheses and drawing conclusions.  Beyond all that, it's just plain fun!  Here's how to make thinking fun...

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Understanding Liturgy in Schole'

My curiosity was piqued over a year ago when I first talked with Dr. Perrin and learned his vision for Schole' groups.  It was specifically piqued, and I will admit a bit confused, when I heard him talk about the "liturgy of the classroom".  I really wanted to understand what this whole idea of liturgy and education had to do with each other and get my mind around it all.  So to understand it we need to start at the mall...

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Teaching Plans Released Today!


Just in time for summer planning!  The updated Teaching Plan for Year 2 is a great way to add experience based learning to the Foundations' curriculum, for those pursuing a classical education through Classical Conversations®!  This plan has all 24 weeks across all subjects as well as the popular SGM Wonderful Wednesday plan!  In addition, pin maps for geography, and a hands on Latin game are all included in this download purchase!

Teaching Plan Year 2
24 Week Plan + Wonderful Wednesday!
Only $14.95 
Add to Cart

I've also released The Great Eight Artists resource.  This is a terrific resource for those wishing to go deeper on eight of the most famous artists from the Renaissance to Post Impressionism era!  This resource includes artist fact cards for student study of the following artists: 

Rembrandt, Linnaeus, Gainsborough, Monet, Degas, Morisot, Renoir, and Van Gogh.

There is also a vocabulary section, famous paintings for picture study, geography study related to each artist, book recommendations for deeper study and student art activities for each artist!  This is a great deal at $4.99!  It can be used with Year 2, any other curriculum or as an independent study of the eight most famous Renaissance to Post Impressionism artists to have ever lived.

The Great Eight Artists
Only $4.99
Add to Cart

This should make summer a breeze!  Now just get your favorite drink beverage and enjoy the pool for the summer - the planning is done for you!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Final Learning Celebration! #4

Our student's ended their school year with a learning celebration featuring their skills in ancient shadow puppetry learned in Fine Arts, and the fables they learned in Great Books from Aesop!  It was a fantastic collaborative effort by two of our best Academic Mentors!  You won't want to miss this…