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Everything posted by kaxy

  1. Have you looked into Brave Writer? What would happen if you let him dictate his idea/sentence/paragraph to you while you transcribed it? You could then have him copy what you've written.
  2. There was a BW webinar this week about this very topic: homeschooling a slew of kids. Let me share some of what I took with that. Perhaps also consider reaching out to the people at Brave Writer for ideas. Some of my notes: Aim for the middle kid, or group them into two groups if their needs are wildly different. Rather than doing 3 Arrows, do the same Arrow for those older 3. Scale up for your older kid (have them do the copy work + have them choose an additional passage; the next kid can maybe do the whole copywork; the younger could do a portion; and the youngest could write literally one word. For a 10-month schedule, maybe choose 2-3 books that would really speak to an individual kid. They can still free read other books of interest. That way, you're doing Arrows all together, having a shared experience with that book, and maybe preserving a bit of sanity? She suggested to do Partnership Writing, and collaborate on one project at a time, rather than multiple projects going simultaneously. Each kid doing what they can contribute at their level. Or, you could all do something of the same genre or topic. You can rotate your attention. "Deep dive, not fragmented frenzy." Rotate your attention, divide and cluster skill levels; rotate one-on-one time by month; rotate times of day for individualized attention. Rather than worry about 10 different writing projects for each kid, it is better to go deep with fewer projects.
  3. This is done in Indiana. During my grandfather's funeral procession, a woman on a riding lawn mower stopped mowing and removed her hat while we passed. I was so moved by her gesture.
  4. Ooh I'm glad I finally came across this: Charlotte Mason read and enjoyed the Waverly Novels by Sir Walter Scott. These were historical fiction. (I was reminded of this name finally in Anne White's book "Minds More Awake").
  5. Hahahaha ok I'm awkward, sorry memory of Charlotte Mason for taking it down THAT path. Really unsure about Jeopardy. Not sure how she felt about trivia contests or knowledge bees if they did them back then. I like to imagine that she'd enjoy some of my own favorite shows, but I can also see her not having a TV, or using it very sparingly.
  6. Soaps? Game shows? AFV? I survived...? Hahaha. Probably not those.
  7. Perhaps so. But, I'd argue that movies and shows are just one medium for which to tell a story, and while you can see a play in person, sometimes it is limited to time and financial constraints. So maybe she'd go to a movie theater? I do think she'd be picky about what she watched, if anything.
  8. I have read books/blog posts about Mason, and only excerpts of Mason's writings and I'm not an expert in the slightest. I know she valued being exposed to interesting ideas, things of beauty and truth. She didn't want pre-digested info; she wanted the source and to let the authors speak. I'm trying to find the name of the book series that she read from every night for her own enjoyment. Perhaps she'd also watch the TV equivalent of that?
  9. Humor me with imagining what, if anything, Charlotte Mason might do with a TV if she were around these days. Netflix and chill? And if so, what would be on her watch list? PBS news? Or some other source? Documentaries? BBC costume dramas? Or, no TV or streaming? I'm thinking of her own use here, but also we could take it to what she'd say for students.
  10. Do you do studied dictation (a la Charlotte Mason)? That might be worth a look as a technique alongside or stand-alone for spelling
  11. Oh, and the book lists on Sabbath Mood Homeschool are useful: http://sabbathmoodhomeschool.com/charlotte-mason-living-science/weather-books/ and http://sabbathmoodhomeschool.com/charlotte-mason-living-science/astronomy-books/
  12. If you liked The Elements (the Theodore Gray one, right?), check out The Solar System by Marcus Chown. Same kind of concept. Stunning visuals. We also enjoyed Galileo and the Stargazers (Jim Weiss audio) and Along Came Galileo as a read-aloud. I disagree that a telescope is a "must." It depends on the dark sky in your area. Honestly, a strong pair of binoculars might be more useful. Seek out area astronomy lectures and resources (planetariums, solar labs, amateur viewing nights, etc.). Area universities might have options. We visited a TV studio when talking about meteorology. Look at the science centers in a driveable radius for a possible day-trip. Some might have ASTC reciprocal admission in case you have an ASTC membership somewhere already. Get some Night Sky apps, the kind where you can hold your phone up to the sky and it will label what you're seeing as you aim your phone. Really cool!
  13. I'd rather make NEW mistakes than repeating old ones, know what I mean? While I'm in planning mode for the upcoming year, I'm reflecting on what has worked well and what has been a belly-flop-off-the-high-dive at my house. My aim is to pinpoint reasons why I made the choice initially, and where it all went wrong. For you, maybe it is curriculum, an approach, an outside activity. Care to join me? 1. What: Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding (BFSU) Why I chose it: I was attracted to the inquiry aspect of exploring many topics and seeing and making connections, the potential for going deeper, and how it didn't seem like any other elementary science curriculum on the market. Why it didn't work for me: I found that the prep was too time-consuming and I was just plain overthinking it. I have the Kindle version which is fine and searchable...but my Kindle is glitchy so sometimes I would look at it on my computer. A physical copy probably would have fared better. I think if I stuck with it, I probably would have figured out a way to make it work but... What I did instead: The free trial of Mystery Science was perfect. Engaging, encouraged inquiry, involved little/no prep, and required NO mental energy on my part. I bought a subscription when it was on sale. We'll keep it going and may go another direction later, but it really helped out this year for me and my kid enjoyed it. 2. What: Morning Time Why I chose it: It just sounds so lovely, the three kids and I piled on the couch/around the able soaking up truth, goodness, and beauty. Why it didn't work for me: We started out strong, probably too ambitious. It quickly faded away to nothing. I want to rekindle it, and maybe do 1-2 things consistently rather than planning to do several things and ending up with nothing at all. Also, my youngest child just is a bit disruptive and loud right now (yes, I know all of the toddler tricks for morning time) but it just wasn't a battle I was going to fight. I could blame the toddler, or the middle kid who miiight want to participate some time, or otherwise just run off and hide. I could also blame my poor parenting of allowing them to watch an episode of something on Netflix in the morning while I have my coffee and try to wake up. (Just sayin'. Just reflectin'. Don't be hatin'.) ALSO, we have had a bit of out-of-the-house activities this year. Most did not overlap, so while I don't feel that we were spread too thin, it did have an impact on the rhythm of our morning and our day. What I did instead: Yeah, it just got dropped. Read-alouds still happen at various times with various kids, but it wasn't exactly Morning Time and it didn't pull in some of the varied, beautiful things I would love to enjoy with my kids. I was very good about keeping our audio books and music varied and interesting for car rides. It just ...it wasn't a thing like I had hoped. What I'm going to do next: I am going to try adding ONE Morning Time type of thing and be consistent with that. Probably over breakfast or lunch where I have a captive and perhaps quiet enough group of kids. I want to have achievable expectations for myself and family. One thing. 3. What: certain pdf files Why I chose them: Typically they are a lot cheaper than a physical resource; in some cases a pdf is the only format available. Why they aren't working for me: I don't have a tablet. I have a phone, desktop computer, and an annoying Kindle that isn't even mine anymore; it is my kids'. Following curriculum on any of those devices is kind of annoying and limiting *for me* and I would do better to either print it out (and hope my printer cooperates) or buy a physical version in the first place. Some things I like being able to physically flip through. Perhaps I could do that with a tablet, but I don't really want one right now. The exception: I will continue to purchase pdfs of files meant to be printed in the first place, such as copywork or our Right Start student sheets. Some pdf ebooks meant to be read aloud are ok and I will decide what to do with these on a case-by-case basis. But really? I think I will opt for the physical resource. I'm sure there are more. This post is long enough. :) What about you?
  14. I don't know! Work in progress. Eldest child will be 3rd, then I will have a 1st grader and a 4yo. A lot of this is just continuing on with what we're doing, with some change-ups as needed. Right now, I'm taking stock of what worked well, what was a big flop, and what I can learn from those experiences to better guide the decisions I make for the upcoming year. Math: continuing Right Start. Math Mammoth if necessary to change it up, as I already have it. Bedtime Math app and math games Spelling: Maybe continuing LoE Essentials, maybe switching/breaking to Spelling Wisdom. Kid is a natural speller and it might not make sense to devote so much energy and time to spelling via LoE right now. I am planning on having him take the DORA assessment again, and if he has made big gains in spelling according to that (because I want objective here, hah!), we'll scale back LoE. If progress is less than expected, will keep up with LoE. Handwriting: SCM's Hymns in Prose cursive Other LA: more Brave Writer quiver, free writes, joining in on 1st grader's Jot it Down projects....maaaybe partnership?? Probably not partnership if I'm being honest with myself for what we can accomplish in a year. Literature: Assortment of read-alones and read-alouds pulled from Beautiful Feet, Sonlight, ATTA, AO, Give Your Child the World, Brave Writer, etc. Science: continuing Mystery Science. Potentially doing SITB, or maybe Ellen McHenry something? BFSU was a big fail for me, I can tell ya that much. History: continuing Beautiful Feet American book list. Perhaps getting SOTW on audio for in the car. Not really interested in the activities. Then again, maybe CHOW would work Logic: more puzzles, maybe some more Prufrock Press offerings. Some apps. Latin: Something. Maybe SSL Spanish: I have SSS and Speaking Spanish with Miss Mason and both are just getting ignored. I think I will buy the DVD for SSS and get started on that now; maybe that will help us actually get to it. Other stuff: Maps, Charts, Graphs workbook, Vocabulary Cartoon of the Day (he usually gets a chuckle out of these), Mad Libs, Scratch, Snap Circuits, some sort of science tinker kit that isn't junk (need to buy), free art (i.e., I throw out misc. art materials and say have at it). Plenty of other stuff on my shelves, stuff obtained with good intentions but you know how it goes I feel like I'm missing something.
  15. Have you taken a look at the artist packs from Simply Charlotte Mason? Portfolios include some prints, and a living bio of that artist
  16. I think Mystery Science is very friendly to those living with Tasmanian Devils. Throw in some library books, boom.
  17. I know, isn't this exciting!? We are driving to Kentucky to see it. Some angles you could look at (and this is just surface stuff to get started). Maybe looking at eclipses over history and cultural reactions? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eclipse_of_Thales https://image.gsfc.nasa.gov/poetry/ask/a11846.html (ugh, my eyeballs) http://www.astronomytoday.com/eclipses/ancient-part1.html Get your solar eclipse shades soon, if you haven't already! Feel free to PM me for a source.
  18. RightStart typical has Cyber Monday. Get on their email list
  19. I'm guessing 1st edition? You could do the 2nd edition, which has 3 levels of differentiated spelling and vocab ... or if you're comfortable with how they're spelling, maybe move on to other LA areas.
  20. 2nd grade DS, Kindergarten DD, toddler DD. LOVES: - RightStart - Logic of English Foundations (Kindergarten DD) - Brave Writer lifestyle, and Jot it Down! and Quiver - art & nature class at museum (an 8-week class through October) - Lots of unschooly science - Scratch - ALL OF THE FREE TIME and space for my kids to think, create, play, explore and just BE. LIKE: - Logic of English Essentials (It might turn to a love, but I feel like I need more time with it to be sure) - Reading books pulled from history booklists (using TruthQuest and All Through the Ages). My kid is only so-so on interest in history. Could be a maturity thing, could be just particular subject matter. DUMPED: - All About Spelling and All About Reading. Ditched in favor of Logic of English Foundations for Ker, and LoE Essentials for 2nd grader JUST PLAIN NOT REALLY GETTING DONE RIGHT NOW: - BFSU - Hoffman Academy - Fine arts loop (I'm ok with that since we are getting plenty with our class. I suspect once that ends, we'll add the loop back) - Any sort of resemblance to the "routine" I crafted before we started the year. :lol: It is looking a bit free-form at the moment. :mellow:
  21. Looks like Mystery Science is still handing out free memberships for currently released content. Give it a shot! No harm, right? You're doing some parent-intensive curriculum, plus you're pregnant ... this is a busy season and a format like Mystery Science can help you a ton. An alternative is to scrap it for now entirely. Focus on some simple nature study (I am loving Exploring Nature with Children as a guide). Let that be enough for this season, perhaps.
  22. Give Logic of English Essentials 2nd Ed. a look. Within, there are 3 levels of spelling using similar phonograms. The most advanced level C uses more challenging phonograms, including phonograms of words borrowed from other languages. Also, three levels of vocab study (morpheme based). My son is solidly in level B for his spelling instruction, but I'm having him read to me the words from C as they are challenging and it is giving him exposure to seeing the word in print as well as practice reading them.
  23. Do a short trial (I think you can probably get your first month at a discount) to see how you like it. We did it a few years back, and while I like that it was the idea + materials, I ended up dropping it in favor of buying random supplies from the dollar store and letting them have at it. My kids are 7, 5, 2 now, but at the time I think they were 5 and 3? Or maybe 4/2? I DONT KNOW I can see me adding a short subscription or buying some a la carte kits to help us get through that horrible time of year known as January - March.
  24. Vocabulary Cartoon of the Day -- some are more amusing than others, but sometimes humor helps make it stick. Along those lines for humor and vocab, The Vocab Show DVD. Takes a Greek and Latin roots approach. Silly humor. Vocabu-lit might be worth a look, and another workbook approach to consider is Vocabulary Workshop. I prefer the later editions, as they use words in context with a little story as well. I like how they explore nuances of words.
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