Elementary Lessons: Our Mini Homeschool Co-op
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I always thought I wasn’t a homeschool co-op sort of person. I’m an introvert. I have my own very strong opinions about what is and what isn’t a waste of time. And I hate being overscheduled or overcommitted. Moreover, I think kids should have plenty of free, unstructured play time – why not schedule play days instead of extracurricular school activities? However, it turns out I have a homeschool co-op. Kinda. It’s a mini co-op, and it provides accountability and … Read More

2nd & 3rd Grade Plans | 2016-2017 School Year
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This year I have two elementary students and two middle school students – plus the toddler that I suppose I should start calling a preschooler. My 8-year-old, Ilse, will be in 3rd grade. She still needs practice reading, so time for that must be reserved. My 6-year-old son, Knox, on the other hand, is currently reading through the Redwall series – he is a fluent reader. According to his age, he’d be 1st grade. According to the level he works … Read More

Homeschool Grammar
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At long last, here is the post I promised back when I wrote about how I teach writing on how I teach grammar. Grammar and diagramming is not something that has always come easily for me. I remember 7th or 8th grade when diagramming was introduced in my Bob Jones Language Arts workbook. My mom and I both gave up because we didn’t get it. Fast forward a few years and I was an English major at the University of … Read More

Review Game: Hangman
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Like I said last week, review is necessary, but so many methods for review have problems. Some review is just regurgitating the information or going over the same material again. That might be review, but it makes the student tune out rather than engage and retain. Neither Charlotte Mason nor John Milton Gregory nor Gilbert Highet condone that sort of review. Some review is stressful and short-term. Most test-taking and pop quizzes add pressure rather than interest and do more … Read More

5 tips for teaching kids to use checklists
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We’ve been using checklists in our homeschool for about 3 years now, since my oldest was 9 and my second-born was 7. Through much trial and error, I’ve learned some rules of thumb for teaching kids to use checklists. Because I’ve received several questions about my kids’ checklists, I thought I’d share what I have learned as well as the checklists we’ve used over the years. 1. A checklist doesn’t replace mom. It’s so tempting to just pass off a … Read More

2015-2016 Elementary Group Lessons
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This will be the third year that my good friend & neighbor (what a blessing that she’s both!) will swap kids twice a week after lunch so that each group can get the sort of activity they should have: for middle kids, learning in community; for little kids, open-ended pretend play (and picture books, too). Both groups enjoy not being interrupted by the other. So, lessons for the elementary-level kids are at my house, and here’s what I’ll be doing: … Read More

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