Shakespeare for Kids: Taming of the Shrew

posted in: homeschooler | 1

Last month I wrote about a 5-step plan for introducing Shakespeare to my kids. It’s what we did last year with three plays and what we’re doing again this year. Just today I heard my 9-year-old wandering around the house muttering, “murder most foul” and “O, my prophetic soul” to himself – Shakespeare has great mouth-feel. In my original Shakespeare for Kids post, I wrote: Shakespeare was written in order to be seen, scripted in order to be performed. Shakespeare … Read More

Shakespeare for Kids: An Easy 5-Step Plan

posted in: homeschooler | 12

Shakespeare can be an intimidating subject to introduce. Isn’t the language archaic and the doesn’t high quality mean high difficulty? Actually, the language isn’t that difficult when it’s read (that is, interpreted) by an experienced reader. The profound themes within plots were created not as pure art, but also to entertain the masses. Shakespeare was the hot movie in his day, and he can still be enjoyed that way today. You don’t have to wait for high school to do … Read More

On Using Curriculum – Simply Convivial

posted in: extra | 11

In what ways have you let your materials be the driver in your homeschool instead of yourself? What ways have you tweaked your curriculum to make them work for you instead of you for them? When we talk about not being slave to the materials and using wisdom to apply them to your situation and your children, sometimes it is easy to assume that the best route would be to use no ready-done curriculum at all, to hand-craft each and … Read More

On Driving Your Curriculum

posted in: homeschooler | 25

As a homeschool grad myself, my first “real” classroom experience was college. This was interesting, because it meant I was old enough to be aware of what was going on and it was strange enough (to me) that I was curious. As a previously homeschooled college student, I overheard and took part in many conversations about how homeschooling and private schooling stack up, where each fell short of our high 20-something ideals, and why one might choose one or the … Read More

Classical Homeschooling in Our Home

What your homeschool looks like, even as you try working toward classical education principles, depends on where you’ve been, and how and when you entered this path. There are no gate-keepers checking your credentials and only letting you in if you use the approved materials. And that’s a good thing. This week, we’re going to be sharing how these principles play out in our homes. We’re all different, and I hope that will encourage you. My husband and I were … Read More

Our Homeschool Year: Fourth Grade & Sixth Grade Blocks – Simply Convivial

posted in: extra | 9

Of course, the bulk of our time blocks goes to the older students. I can hardly believe this is Hans’ 7th year of “official” homeschooling since the time he started reading at 5. Though they do have more work than their younger siblings, none of it is onerous and they still should be able to do it and have plenty of free time every day for their own pursuits and hobbies if they don’t dawdle. The blocks in our homeschool … Read More

The Living Page: Living a Liturgy

I recently finished Laurie Bestvater’s The Living Page: Keeping Notebooks with Charlotte Mason, and I loved it. I bought it based on Brandy’s reviews, and I’m glad I made the leap-of-faith, even though I am only a Charlotte Mason admirer and not a strict adherer. I think this book, with the history behind commonplace books and Mason’s implementation of it, demonstrates more clearly than ever that Charlotte Mason was not an innovator, but was making methods and practices based soundly … Read More

Teaching Beginning Writing, freeform

posted in: homeschooler | 2

This year I start teaching writing again. I have taught several writing classes over a scattered 5 years from 2001-2010. I started off using the old IEW teacher training materials that the mother who wanted me to teach gave me and my mother-in-law’s IEW teacher manual. Every year that I taught, I deviated more and more from Pudewa’s implementation, while still keeping the principles. This year I am teaching a weekly writing class with my two oldest sons and 4 … Read More

Teach Your Children to Resolve Conflict: Free Lesson Plans for The Young Peacemaker – Simply Convivial

posted in: homeschooler | 5

Timing is a funny thing. When I made our Elementary Lesson plans and our Circle Time plans, I considered, but decided against, using The Young Peacemaker. I heard about it a few years ago, purchased it, and used it during Circle Time. We worked through about a third of the 12-lesson book before I ditched it. The concepts taught are excellent, but the stories, examples, and explanations are geared for upper elementary & middle school, and it wasn’t a good … Read More

Low-Key Science, without lesson plans

posted in: homeschooler | 5

At the time of this writing, I have a 9yo, 7yo, 4yo, & 2yo. As with history, I believe science in the elementary years should be geared toward awareness and interest rather than the acquisition of a testable bank of particular knowledge or facts. So far this has served us well, mostly because I do have eager readers so far. Well, it’s served me well, anyway, because this way involves no preparation on my part, no supply lists, and no … Read More

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