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  1. Does anyone have any experience with Ambleside Online? It claims to be rigorous, but, I'm wanting some objective thoughts. I wouldn't be using the LA part. Thanks a lot!!
  2. While I know there's been "Charlotte Mason-inspired" curricula around for awhile (MFW, HoD, etc), it seems to me there's been a small explosion of more faithful interpretations in the last couple years. It would be helpful, at least for me, to see a list in one place. I'll list those that I know of here, and if anyone can add more, please do. Also if you have experience with any of these, please post your thoughts. Ambleside Online - the grandaddy, uses many older books, they also have CM's writings viewable for free Simply Charlotte Mason - this one has been around a little while also, good for combining different ages The Alveary - from the Charlotte Mason Institute Wildwood Curriculum - non-faith-based A Mind in the Light - by a poster here on the WTM forums, has some classical influence A Gentle Feast - this one includes plans for Morning Time and poetry teas A Modern Charlotte Mason - includes modern books and internet links along with traditional selections Ursa Minor Learning - this one readily admits that it is not pure CM, but I thought it interesting because it is only high school levels (for now), and has a stronger focus on science and math
  3. What does this mean to you? It's been a year since this thread: http://forums.welltrainedmind.com/topic/527887-anyone-up-for-a-philosophical-discussion-about-teaching-from-a-state-of-rest-re-circe-discussion-and-how-it-is-interpretedapplied/?hl=%2Bschole Anyone care to continue the conversation? The spirit of the concept sometimes gets lost in popular interpretation, and it's easy to get distracted by preconceived notions, but scholé does seem worth pondering.... What does it mean to you in the high school years?
  4. Well, it's been a long time since I've been here! Good to be back. Our 2 oldest have graduated, married (both this summer!!) & now we've got littles to educate ;0) 1 year old, (new) 6 year old & 8 year old. I'm thinking about doing a semester more of kindy w/ the 6 yob & starting 1st in January. 8yog is solid third although math always needs more help! Has anyone tried to combine this many different styles?? The notebooking/narration part of the classical approach using SOTW that we did with our older ones is very similar to Waldorf's (somewhat) unit study approach to Main Lesson Books, although my brain needs workbooks for spelling, most of math, & handwriting (sorry about that sentence, not even gonna correct it bc it's too late at night)! We'll be on SOTW book 3 this fall but I really would love to encorporate the Waldorf studies of gardens, shelters, fiber arts & Native Americans. Any ideas welcome! Shannon mama to 5 ages 1-22, homeschool mama since 2002 instagram mamaj41
  5. Hi, I'm new here. Right now I'm looking for a Spanish language arts curriculum or guide for 2nd grade. It is as a first language, English is our second language. I can't believe it's so hard to find something good! Is anyone in the same situation? Thanks!
  6. After abdandoing my plans to do AO (good riddance...this was a good move for me/us), I am planning out the year for my 1st and 3rd grader. We will be using SOTW as our history spine, and I have the activity books to refer to as well, for maps and such. We are also going to be using Brave Writer for each child (The Wand and The Arrow). With AO, everything was laid out and scheduled for me, down to page numbers, so I knew what to plan for a week, a month, etc. Now that I'm on my own, I'm freaking out a little bit! I have us down to do about a chapter (sometimes 2) from SOTW for each child. Yes,they will be in different cycles of history...I really want my 3rd grader to be "caught up" in regards to the cycle going forward, and she's a strong independent reader, so I can hand it off to her. Does this amount per week seem reasonable? I know it's not wise to try to get supplemental history books for each topic, but I have planned out at least one most weeks, titles I can get from the library or that we own. Should I do that, or make it simpler and just let SOTW stand on its own? How much supplemental reading do you do? Spelling/writing/grammar will be through Brave Writer, but I'd like to assign some other literature to my 3rd grader as well, in addition to the monthly BW book. The trouble is, I have no idea how quickly we'll move through them, and I don't know how to account for that on the schedule. Meaning, as I go though and map out each week, do I note down the book I want her to be reading? If she's not done with it , or already flew through it, then the subsequent weeks of schedules will be "off." I'm sure I'm making this more complicated than it needs to be, but now that I'm not following AO's pre-made schedule, I'm a bit of a loss. I won't be handing her a book and saying "read pages 20-25 and stop to narrate," and then dropping the book for another week. Its all much more fluid, and I don't know how to plan for that! Or is everything other than the BW book a "strongly suggested free read" for her to get to when she has reading time each day? More thoughts: we are doing RS for math. That's all fine. I am planning poetry/Shakespeare/art study/songs as part of morning time all together. That seems doable. That leaves me with science. I'd rather not make nature study the main part of our science...I just...don't love it, and it turns into play outside time, not categorize trees time. Lol. I have BFSU, but I find it baffling and so confusing. I don't have it in me to plan those lessons. Thoughts on another science approach? Kids would be combined on this one. I'd really appreciate some feedback and advice. We're starting in 2.5 weeks, and I just undid all my plans this weekend, so I'm scrambling and nervous to be going "on my own." Grateful for the help!
  7. (x-posted w/ K-8) I have a sweet 9 year old boy who is a fairly good reader. His comprehension is also ok, but a little below average simply because of attention difficulties. He has Autism and is very visual, but is also hyperlexic so he is able to decode and read words at a fairly high level. He is so sweet, and so eager to learn, but has a tremendous amount of difficulty focusing and I want to make his first full time year of homeschooling a very positive and engaging experience for him. This can set the tone for the years to come as he has had some very difficult experiences with many other methods, so thank you for reading. Because of a special funding source for my homeschool curricula, I am limited to buying only books that are listed somewhere as being part of a "complete curriculum." However, I have permission to substitute the 'extra wordy and non-pictoral' versions of these books with ones that would be more appropriate and hold his attention. (This, of course, is all in an effort to get him to the place where he can read with little or no visual support within the book and he is able to make the pictures in his head, but for now....) He seems to respond best to the Charlotte Mason, Unit Studies approach but I'm open to anything. Therefore I can use Amblesideonline, Five in a Row, My Fathers World, or any Charlotte Mason or Classical Curriculum (or other) websites that have book lists, or say 'curriculum' and preferably have year #'s or grade #'s associated with it. However, most of the books as they get into the 3rd grade and above have very few pictures, and even some of the classics that do have pictures, they tend to be "sketch" like and very abstract, which is hard for him to focus on because of a seizure disorder and visual tracking problems. If you have any ideas, suggestions, favorites of visually engaging classics or modern classics that you or your children loved even if you aren't sure if it is on someone's curriculum list, please let me know the name, author, series, website, curriculum name, blog...whatever you can remember. Since I am swimming in possibilities and this process is taking just a huge amount of time and effort, I thought I'd pop on here and see what the 'experts' already know instead of trying to reinvent the wheel from scratch. I'd rather be teaching and reading than hunting and searching, so if you have any suggestions, I'm so appreciative! Note: His Special Interest Areas just as an additional fyi: Presidents, U.S. History, Relationships, Character development, Bible, Cultural/Geographical, Classical Composers, Theater and music. (x-posted w/ special needs)
  8. What does the composer/artist/poet study look like in your home? I found some good composer books by Opal Wheeler, but how are they implemented? What do you use for artist study? Poetry, is it one poet for the year? I ordered 'Favorite Poems Old and New' which is supposed to arrive today!
  9. Okay, I'm getting up on my soapbox here. Plug your ears. :D CM did not require "just copywork" from her young students! There. I said it. I'm not sure where the rumor got started; but it's not true, according to the first volume of her educational series, Home Education. Below, I'll post some exercises CM suggested for the younger set. Now, mind you, I'm no CM expert. I've only read the first volume of CM's work so far. But I've read SO MANY times in SO MANY places that CM just had children write "a little bit" and "just copywork for the first several years" that I believed it. (I just didn't follow that advice. :D ) If you want to do just copywork, go ahead! But if you want to follow a CM method and feel guilty about using a LA program, or you are wondering why copywork "isn't enough", etc., well... 1) Don't feel guilty, and 2)Maybe, just maybe, it isn't enough. ;) As I wrote in another thread, when I read the following quote in Home Education, I literally dropped the book. The exercises are so very similar to what we're doing in R&S English 2, or to FLL! Well, y'all probably know all this already, but even if I help just one person from falling into the same misconception I had, it's enough.:)
  10. So, a friend of mine randomly handed me a Charlotte Mason Book after telling her about some of the struggles I've had with my 8 yo son. We were big CC'ers and mostly did lots of rote memorization of facts and he HATED it. So now, we've kind of been at a stand-still as far as curriculums go. We've been sticking with our R&S stuff but nothing too in depth. I never thought I would go the Charlotte Mason route. Not because I never liked it but because I just never felt *sold* on it I presume. Anyway, the book is knocking my socks off!! Anyone else do more of a Charlotte Mason approach? What curriculums do you use? Or what aligns best with her approaches? Thanks in advance!!!
  11. If you design your own CM booklist/curriculum, what are the resources you use to pull it all together? Do you use AO as a base? SCM? Mater Amabilis? None of the above? And if none of the above, do you have a scope and sequence, an over-arching plan for what time periods to hit, what books to include and get to, etc? I am considering going off on my own, curriculum-wise, because I'm tweaking the pre-made booklists more and more, but I like the idea of having a whole plan, knowing I will get to the things which are important, and not having to reinvent the wheel each school year. Thoughts?
  12. I know of a lot of Charlotte Mason sites on the web (Simply Charlotte Mason, Ambleside, Charlotte Mason Help) but I am sure there are some I am unaware of. I feel a strong need to connect to all things CM. So what are the best CM forums, blogs, general websites? Thanks!!!
  13. I've been browsing this site: http://www.charlottemasonhelp.com/2009/07/habit-training.html I feel absolutely overwhelmed by all that we need to accomplish here...and highly motivated to get started! :) So...I'm starting a running list of which chores to introduce & when, helpful routines & organizational strategies we could implement, etc. I'm planning to take one small step at a time, maybe one for each child or just something we could implement as a family, and build from there. I know everyone will have different lists...but I'm curious to hear from you all... What would you say are the *key* tips to routines, chores & organization that have worked in your family? Looking for *practical* "nuts & bolts" ideas here. Thanks! :)
  14. Any way to delete this post? It seems to be attracting lots of Spam...
  15. Just blogged about last week's picture study with Van Gogh's Starry Night. If anyone has been wondering about SCM's portfolios, or picture study in general, you might appreciate it.
  16. First some background info: Ds9 is going to be 10 when he starts 5th grade. In fact, we start school the day after his birthday. He is imaginative, a dreamer, builds xyz with Lego once and leaves it like that for playing as a toy, talks about building and creating things nonstop but doesn't care to actually provide the blueprints, etc. Most things he wants to build are not grounded in reality. He doesn't enjoy school very much, but he's ok with it most days. Other days he actually enjoys it. He has a happy nature in general, and extremely enthusiastic about the stuff he's imagining or wants to build or he's seen on TV or wants to have. History is his favorite subject, but he has trouble remembering names and dates. He gravitates towards the most exciting part of the story, regardless whether it is important to the whole. We've been using and enjoying SOTW. Ds is also a reluctant writer. He's been a touch argumentative for some time now, enjoys watching videos and learns from them, loves video games, and would rather play than work. In fact, he has imagined several times a world where weekends are five days long and lessons are only two days a week. He tells me this with a big grin on his face :) He likes reading and doesn't have a problem with assigned reading. He loves comic books. He devoured the whole local library's selection of Calvin and Hobbes, and he enjoys Tintin too. He is fond of cuddling up with me on the couch and listening to me read. We use the Charlotte Mason method, this year doing approx. 30 min. per lesson, with a few exceptions. We may go 40 min. with Science this year, and Poetry is about 15 min daily. Here are my planned resources and materials (BTW, I've been asking for his input in his studies since third grade and he's very nonchalant about it, hurrying up so he can go back to playing with his sister, imagining, whatever): Grammar - Grammarland, Emma Serl's Intermediate Language Lessons (Hillside Education), and BBC Bitesize English Spelling and Grammar games http://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/ks2/english/spelling_grammar/ Spelling - once a week, reinforcing during week Phonics review using Noah Webster's Reading Handbook, then cull word lists from Natural Speller and upload to Spelling City. Vocabulary - once a week Vocabulary Cartoons - read it together, have him write down, memorize, use. Writing - once a week Wordsmith Apprentice - excited about this, as it is written to the reluctant writer, and it looks fun, perfect for ds Math - daily Math Mammoth (MM) 4B and 5A and a some living books in Math, such as Famous Mathematicians and the Sir Cumference series. Also Fridays, online math games listed in MM. History - 4X a week Mondays through Thursdays: SOTW 4 Modern Times with AG and Usborne Encyclopedia (ds and I love this program, and the mapwork - not to forget the Usborne Quicklinks) with readings culled from Complete Book of United States History, Children's Encyclopedia of American History, a few Landmark Books, and a wide selection of biographies (both historical figures as well as scientists) and relevant historical fiction (see literature). We're focusing on the Civil War and World War I. I'm also including some lovely picture books, mostly fiction, but including the nonfiction World War I scrapbook Where Poppies Grow. We're also watching America: The Story of US. This year I'm excited to include Graphic History Library titles (History in comics) for ds to enjoy. Natural Science - 4X a week Mondays through Wednesdays: BFSU2 (we're finishing this up this year) and Usborne Science Encyclopedia (Quicklinks again) with plenty of living books and a topical study of Rivers, Oceans, Marine Life on Thursdays. On Fridays he joins dd6 in Nature Studies. I'm also making it a point to watch videos on NeoK12. We all enjoy them. Literature Readings - daily Read, narrate, and discuss. This is a kid who loves to share what he reads. The Black Stallion, The In-Between Days, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The House of Sixty Fathers, The Hobbit, Swallows and Amazons, The Moffats, Twenty and Ten, There's an Owl in the Shower, Snow Treasure, Miracles on Maple Hill, Island of the Blue Dolphins Literature Read-Alouds - daily I read aloud, we discuss. I'm going to pick two classics for Literature Analysis. I have Critical Conditioning as a resource for this. Heidi, Across Five Aprils, The Secret Garden, Little Britches, Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Black Beauty In Nonfiction dh is reading aloud Bully For You, Teddy Roosevelt and I am reading The Flying Scotsman, a Biography Culture, Myths, and Legends (part of read-alouds) 100 Best Children's Stories from China and the audio collection Shakespeare's Greatest Hits Retold by Bruce Coville. Geography - once a week The 7 Continents: Asia by Evan Moor (got this for free one year) Usborne Peoples of the World The Kingfisher Children's Atlas Spanish - 4X a week He's had a few years of Spanish under his belt, but this year we're definitely starting to write and use it more. I speak fluent Spanish. Rosetta Stone Spanish Homeschool Edition and So You Really Want to Learn Spanish - Student and Teacher's Book Usborne Spanish Dictionary for Beginners Poetry - daily We focus on one poet per semester, reading his or her short biography, and enjoying one poem per week, memorizing at least 4 per poet. Some poems are discussed and analyzed more than others. Poetry for Young People Series Carl Sandburg and Maya Angelou Music - once a week The Story of the Orchestra with websites to reinforce learning, plus Piano lessons chez moi on Saturdays Art - once a week Dh is teaching again, this time dd and ds are learning about the Impressionists - Monet, Van Gogh, Picasso. Dd5 excels at art, and is right there with ds. She'll be six then. Dh is also building his own art program around them. I'm intrigued. He's always done a stellar job. Getting To Know the World's Greatest Artists Series, Linnea in Monet's Garden, The First Starry Night, Pablo Picasso (Artists in Their Time), Laurence Anholt's lively picture books (I know ds will enjoy as well), Picasso and Minou, Katie Meets the Impressionists, Katie and the Sunflowers Online Resources I'm making it a point of including online videos and games more often, as I can see ds really likes them and learns from them. Here is a selection of our resources: Math Mammoth Videos (thank you, Maria!) NeoK12 BBC Games Nitro Typing Usborne Quicklinks (History, Science) Sheppard Software (Geography) Khan Academy Art of Problem Solving videos (math) National Geographic Geography Coursera The Jason Project After school, ds has swimming 3X a week, Taekwondo 2X a week, basketball (one season, putting Taekwondo and maybe swimming on hold), and possibly dance. Thank you if you have read thus far. I really appreciate your input. It does look like a lot, but remember I'm doing it CM-style, meaning I have shorter lessons than many, and I'm clustering the Music, Nature Study, Art, etc. on Fridays. What do you think? Am I forgetting anything? Do I have time to teach my dd too? She's going to be in first, using a tweaked Living Books Curriculum 1st Grade. I can't believe I have a fifth grader already! :willy_nilly:
  17. Since we started homeschooling I've used a classical/CM mix. This fall I've decided to go full board with Ambleside Online. The problem is twofold - first, since we're not used to doing quite so much reading and narration I'm afraid of overloading the kiddos, and second, we're already committed to a co-op that will provide science, history, art, spanish, geography and writing. I really don't have time to do all that plus the full AO book list. So. I have a sixth, fourth and second grader, but I'm going to do Year 2 history with all of them because it coincides with the co-op history. Here are their booklists for term one: 3rd grader: Bible An Island Story A Child's History of the World This Country of Ours Trial and Triumph The Little Duke Pagoo Tall Tales Heroes Parables of Nature Princess and the Goblin 4th grader: Bible An Island Story A Child's History of the World This Country of Ours Trial and Triumph The Little Duke The Handbook of Nature Study Madame How and Lady Why The Story Book of Science The Age of Fable Robinson Crusoe 6th grader: Bible An Island Story A Child's History of the World Trial and Triumph The Little Duke The Handbook of Nature Study School of the Woods It Couldn't Just Happen Secrets of the Universe Albert Einstein and the Theory of Relativity Age of Fable The Hobbit PLUS Shakespeare, Plutarch, poetry, composer study, picture study... What would you cut out? What are your favorite things that you'd make sure to find time for? I'm already cutting out the geography reading, hymns and folksongs. Thank you!!
  18. Hi all! I am really being drawn to Memoria Press for next year. I need something that gets done, and I like their emphasis on recitation and review, as well as their selected books. I'd be looking at the 3rd and 5th grade set, probably combining the boys in Christian Studies I and Astronomy just to streamline. I'd also stick with MEP and SWR instead of Rod & Staff. (I don't think I'll get the 1st grade set, unless it's just the reading package.) I was going to do LCC next year, but MP has most of what LCC does, and it's all planned out for me. I also like CM. Reading books slowly. Artist & Composer Studies. Nature Study. Narrations and studied dictation. Stretching the child by reading difficult books, Shakespeare, and Plutarch. I love her idea of variety - a rich and generous curriculum. So what I'm thinking is continue their workboxes and fill those with their MP studies (doing some work orally). Add in BFSU for science, and some CM-style literature / living books - maybe 1 book for each school day for them to read slowly over the term or year and narrate from. (I probably wouldn't even schedule these - just a chapter a week until done.) Then for my CM itch, I really want to do a consistent morning basket time. About an hour, everyone combined. I'm thinking of the catechism, LDTPM, some Life of Fred or Minimus, poetry, lots of fairy tales and books from AO's list. Also from Ambleside: Shakespeare, Plutarch, Artist, Composer, Hymn, and Folksong rotations. (Not on the same day or even week, but rotated.) Add in a "Wild Day" every week or two for nature study. We will continue our daily quiet time with silent reading, as well as bedtime stories of course (I don't count those as school). Stock my rain gutter bookshelves (the kids tend to grab the books from there more often) with good books from the 1000 Good Books List and others. I need something laid out. I really have to use my mental energy elsewhere at this time in my life. And I like MP, even if the workbooks don't thrill me. I'd only have to plan the morning basket this way, since MEP & SWR are do the next lesson/list. Thoughts? Comments?
  19. Good morning everyone! I just wanted to pop in and let everyone know that I have posted all 3 of the year's terms for the free History Plans I shared the last few days. :) I am using Story of the World 3 and A History of US 2-5 as the spines but have also scheduled some other things like videos and projects. I also have other books scheduled in that fit with the time period of each term. Here's a link to the newest one: http://themommywrite...kshands_18.html And in case you missed the others, here are the links for those as well: http://themommywrite...kshands_17.html and also: http://themommywrite...bookshands.html Enjoy! ETA: I have just posted the first of three terms for year 2 as well! :) Here is a link: http://themommywrite...kshands_23.html ETA2: I also just posted term 2 of year 2: http://themommywrite...kshands_29.html ETA3: Term 3 of year 2 is now up: http://themommywriter.blogspot.com/2013/05/free-charlotte-masonliving-bookshands.html
  20. I am going to be driving with my girls this summer (and no adults) for about 60 hours total on a very long trip. I am looking for some lectures to listen to. I already have all of SWBs and several from the Circe thread. I think I'd like to learn more about Charlotte Mason. Do any of you know of any good ones?
  21. I want something simple and very Charlotte Mason next year for my 1st and 4th grade kids for Science. I was wondering if anyone has used the Christian Liberty Press Nature Readers as a jumping off point for Science? If so, what did you do? Are there lesson plans somewhere? Did you visit places? Read additional books? Write reports? Watch videos? Do science activities? Make display boards? I would love some ideas!
  22. Hi! I hope this is okay to post here... I recently put together my own History curriculum using lots of different booklists available for free online that I'll be using next year with my 8th, 5th, and 2nd graders using materials we either already own or can easily get for free online and from the library. I thought some others might be interested in using it as well so I thought I'd offer up the link to it here. My plan is to cover 1550 through 1850 using Story of the World 3 and History of US 2-5 as the spines. Let me know what you all think of it and if there are any issues with it at all! :) Thanks! http://themommywrite...bookshands.html ETA: Here's the second of the three terms as well! http://themommywrite...kshands_17.html
  23. I can see definite benefits to my son of having him narrate what he has read. However, we have never done this & I'm trying to figure out how to get started. Should I have him start with oral narration? How quickly would I move him to written narration? What should he narrate? His literature, his history, his science? Should he narrate every subject, every day? What is the difference between narrating and summarizing? Any ideas on how to get started with this at the high school level would be appreciated. Thanks
  24. I am loving all the CM threads going on, and wanted to share what we've been doing for poetry. We are using AO Year 3, reading several poems a day aloud together. We discuss the poems if either of us have thoughts (which we almost always do) but keep it very conversational and casual. Sometimes DD likes to try and figure out rhyme scheme, meter, alliteration, metaphor, and other poetic elements. Other times she just wants to talk about a certain line that she really likes, or a word she is confused about. Often she points out the Biblical imagery she sees in the poem. Once a week, she chooses her favorite poem to copy. She wanted to make a special copybook for these poems, so she designed this: She is still learning cursive so for now her poems are copied in print, and if she wants to she draws a picture to go with the poem. Here is an example: At 8, DD is thoroughly enjoying poetry that I studied in college, and she will also have a beautiful keepsake of her favorite poems. As I said in another post, every time we implement an aspect of CM education, we absolutely love the results. If you use CM style language arts, please continue to share!
  25. I'd like to incorporate some Waldorf-style crafts for the superficial reason that they are so pretty :) , and the slightly more respectable reasons that they are nature-oriented and fairly practical/functional -- it ties in nicely with our CM-ish nature studies and goals for handicrafts. I'm not sure how to best to add on, though, because our schedule is pretty full right now. Granted, "full" includes a generous dose of unstructured and outdoor play; but there isn't a LOT of room for more "structured" activities that require teaching & supervision. This is mainly for Button -- who likes beautiful things, and wants more art & esp. to learn to knit -- and the skills I develop should transfer well to the toddler, who is a Waldorf-friendly kind of guy. Button is very mathy and analytical; the little one is story-oriented and imaginative. At any rate: suggestions? I am thinking my best decision is btw. supplementing with Oak Meadow (but full curriculum, or just the crafts + process manuals?) or Christopherus (same question: go for the whole thing at age-level and pare what I don't want, or do manuals with the nature and skills I'm interested in?). My mental energy is in short supply right now so I am leaning toward something already-organized for me: I don't have the time to really learn how to apply Waldorf flexibly. Oak Meadow is here; Christopherus; Live Ed for other browsing Waldorf, and also A Little Garden Flower. Wee Folk Art has a lovely lesson plan for 3 seasons of work with the 4-6 yos.
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