This past summer the Classical Conversations topic for Practicum was Math. Groaning on the inside a bit, I attended each of the three days, stretching my brain a bit further each day. I had epiphanies – seriously – about math – I didn’t think it possible! And I enjoyed the challenge more than I would have thought. It was surprising for my history-literature-language loving self.
Another surprise from the three-day Practicum was the frequent aspersions cast upon my math curriculum of choice: Saxon Math. Now, I didn’t feel personally attacked, but I began to wonder, “Should we have chosen a different curriculum? Are we going to have to change it up later on?” And I was a bit saddened by that.
This entry is part 4 of 4 in the series Homeschool
Who knew teaching spelling to my girls would become one of my favorite parts of our day? And who knew that given the opportunity to have an uninterrupted conversation with my husband on a recent “date night,” the conversation would turn to a detailed discussion of various spelling rules? My life, it seems, has recently been organized around spelling and spelling rules. I have Marie Rippel’s All About Spelling curriculum to thank for that!
As I said, it has become a touchstone in our homeschool day. So much so that my 3 year old begs to be part of it. I oblige him at the end of our spelling time, and he is really becoming proficient in spelling simple words by sounding them out.
September slipped away so fast! There were some major milestones and lots of learning around here – for all of us! We are settling into the swing of our school year. Our Gathering is the anchor of our days, requested and well-loved around here.
I was talking with a friend about our Gathering the other day. It reminded me of how it all began. And I thought I would share our road to morning time, which we call Gathering.
When it comes to choosing curricula for our kids, I tend to find something I LOVE and want to tell every homeschool Mom about how wonderful it is. And then…I find out the choices we made are some of the more unpopular choices. Or maybe homeschool parents are just highly opinionated creatures and I just happen to run in circles with a whole bunch of people who do not agree with me.
Whatever the case, we do our own thing around here, love it, and don’t plan on changing what works for us. And when it comes to math, we are Saxon people. I cannot foresee a change in this (because ultimately Mama decides and Mama likes Saxon, too). Honestly, my children don’t know there are other options – I am fine with that, too. We started Saxon in first grade with our first student and we haven’t looked back.
Since I know Saxon is not the most popular curriculum out there, I am not going to even attempt to persuade you to buy it, use it, or otherwise think about it. You can run off on other homeschool pursuits around here. There’s plenty for you to read here.
But if you are still reading this article, I want to share with you my organizational tips for making preparing to teach Saxon math simple enough to only have to do it twice a month! Hooray for time-saving organizational tips for homeschooling parents!
This entry is part 3 of 4 in the series Homeschool
Our first day of school was Monday, but Monday was not a day for pictures and celebration as I had hoped it would be. It was a day filled with tears only God could could count (and screaming, and frustration).
It started almost the moment she woke up. I chalked it up to her needing food in her mouth and nourishment for her tummy to function. She and I are intensely similar. The situation improved with each moment of our Gathering.
Then we sat down for math (Saxon, grade 3). This specific morning math meeting I shall never fully understand, nor ever forget.
As a family, we have been working through A Catechism for Boys and Girls during our morning time – I call it Gathering. We started when our girls were very little, so the songs we have learned together have become part of our family culture. I will break out in Catechism songs during mundane moments of our days, even diaper changes. The kids follow right along and know the call and response nature of the catechism very well now.
I wanted my kids to know simple truths from Scriptures and I believe the catechism, done simply and beautifully (with music) is a wonderful way to accomplish this. As I said we have been working on the catechism for years now. And yet, we are not very far along. I prefer to think of our slowness as savoring the truths therein.