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Finlandia

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About Finlandia

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    Hive Mind Worker Bee

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  1. I’m currently reading Nutcracker with my 8 and 2 year old and they are both loving it. The original story that the ballet is based on is a lot longer than most of the picture book versions. There are a lot of battle scenes that would appeal to older boys. We’re reading the version illustrated by Maurice Sendak.
  2. I’ve seen Mandarin and Arabic courses on Outschool, but don’t know about the quality of them since we haven’t taken any yet.
  3. Does the standardized test have any effect on her education? (Not being snarky, genuine question) After reading “Rethinking School” my understanding is that standardized tests are mostly used to evaluate schools rather than individual students, so they have very little value for homeschool students. Since you have to take them for your state, I wouldn’t make too much of a fuss about the timing of it. I’d just have her take them whenever the state says to, then just keep doing what we’ve been doing. In other words, I wouldn’t let the test change anything for me. You don’t even need to look at the results. Just file them away and look at them in 5 or 10 years ?
  4. My DD started using Artistic Pursuits a few months ago and so far really enjoys it. There is a short (~10 min) DVD lesson for each unit and additional instruction in the textbook. I think they now have a book series for elementary ages and a different one for middle school and older.
  5. I love this idea! It seems like such a great balance. I think that fourth week of projects, field trips, etc would be really refreshing, and would make those “get er done” weeks easier. ?
  6. Mr Popper’s Penguins is fantastic as an audiobook. It’s one of my favorites! I don’t have middle schoolers yet, but I think your older kids would enjoy it. We enjoy listening to it in the car. Are most of your read alouds the YWAM biographies? I personally find those biographies pretty boring to read aloud. There is no way I could read that many of them in the same year without sucking all the joy out of our read aloud time, mostly because ALL of the books follow the exact same format - start with an exciting event, go back to the person’s childhood or early adulthood and talk about it for a few chapters, then the person gets a call from God to go to some country, they go, they encounter some hardships in that country, and some good things, some people are helped, and then the book ends. There is no variety in the writing style, so the books become pretty predictable after you’ve read a couple. Kids might not be bothered by this, but I’ve found that if I’m bored with a book we’re reading aloud then I’m more likely to drag my feet, or just abandon it altogether ? A year of world geography sounds so fun! I hope it’s a great year for you all!
  7. This is really helpful! Thank you! It’s good to know that after three years your kids are still using it regularly. And thank you for explaining how the cards work. So many of the reviews talk about how amazing the guides are, but without being able to see samples of them it’s hard for me to get a feel for what they actually are. This sounds like something that my whole family would enjoy (including me!) I’m definitely going to talk with DH about it. I don’t really have any curriculum purchases that I need for this upcoming year, so this might be a good time to invest in something like this.
  8. I only recently learned about Spielgaben and it was instantly added to my mental wishlist. https://spielgaben.com/shop/spielgaben-complete-package-special-deal-incl-hardcopy/ I love the potential for creativity and exploration that something like this has. However, the $500 price tag is no joke! All the reviews I can find online are from people who were given a set in exchange for a review, and let’s face it: it’s a whole lot easier to believe that an item is worth the cost when you didn’t have to buy it with your own money ? So has anyone here used one? What ages have you used it with? The product description says it can be used up to age 12. Is that realistic? For your family, has it been worth the price? Why or why not? For those of you who have thought about buying one but didn’t, what made you decide not to get one? Thanks in advance!
  9. I really like Brave Writer’s idea of having poetry tea time. It can be as simple or as fancy as you like, and as often as you like. Many people make it a weekly event but at our house it is less frequent. For awhile there we did it pretty consistently every other week. I keep it super simple, otherwise it won’t happen at all. I brew some tea. DD7 gathers some snacks. We grab the few poetry books we have at home and bring them to the table. We eat and drink and take turns picking poems to read aloud. DD loves it!
  10. My understanding was that they are all fairly similar, so you are probably okay with any version. The US edition is going to use US money in any word problems or money units, whereas that might not be the case with every edition. We use the US edition with the textbook, workbook, and Home Instructor’s Guide. The HIG was definitely necessary for me to learn how to teach in the way that the curriculum is set up to be taught. It is very different from the way I was taught math growing up (my math education was pretty mediocre) which is why I need the Hig, but some people do fine without it.
  11. You can buy CC's materials without being a part of a community, at least at the Foundations level, which is the grammar stage. The Foundations Guide is the book that has all 3 cycles of weekly memory work listed out. You can also buy audio CDs with all the memory work put to song for each cycle. I believe both of those items are available for purchase on the CC website. It's been a long time since I've looked at that so I could be wrong. You could easily use the materials at home without being a part of a community. Claritas is also a great option. Please do not believe that you are short changing your child if you do not do CC. It is ONE way of implementing a classical education, and there are many people who think it's not even a good one. Classical education is a method and a philosophy, not a certain curriculum. It can be hard to resist the siren song of Classical Conversations, especially at this time of year when they begin their heavy recruiting season. But it is not THE way to educate classically. It is one person's interpretation of classical education. CC is a great fit for many families I know in real life, but there are also many, many families who are providing an excellent education for their children without CC. Best wishes to you as you figure out what is best for your family!
  12. I just thought of a couple more. Anne of Green Gables deals with death and grief when Matthew dies. And Harry Potter - it's an underlying theme throughout the whole series, but especially in books 4 and 5. I'm sure there are others, I just can't think of them at the moment.
  13. I'm sorry for your loss. Bridge to Terabithia is a good one. In fact the author wrote it after one of her children had a classmate who died in early elementary school. But it might be hard for you to read so soon after your friend's death. If it were me I would give myself a little more time before reading it (but I would definitely read it with my kids). Nana Upstairs, Nana Downstairs by Tomie dePaola is a really gentle introduction to death and loss for kids. Even though it's a picture book I think older kids could still appreciate it.
  14. Claritas classical academy has memory work (put to songs) similar to the way classical conversations does, but they have 4 cycles (CC has 3) and they correspond to the four volumes of SOTW, so it doesn't feel as random as CC does.
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