A few weeks ago, I asked you to ask me questions. For fodder. I keep procrastinating the answering of said questions. But I thought answering the homeschool ones in my week in review might be a good idea. That way those of you who could care less about this type of thing...well, you can easily move on.
From Trish: Why do you homeschool one of your girls but not the other? Or why does one of your girls go to public school while the other is homeschooled? When we first started homeschooling, it was not by choice. We lived in a horrible school district. And there was no way I was going to send Katie there. I looked at all other options. And none of them was "really" an option. So, quite reluctantly, I knew for first grade, we'd start. Then an aquaintance of mine suggested that I read Susan Wise Bauer's "The Well Trained Mind." I devoured that book. Read the entire thing. Even about how to homeschool the high schooler. And after reading that book, I was so empowered. I KNEW I could homeschool.
Now, Katie is rather advanced. AND she's an independent learner. She doesn't need a lot of hands on work. And she, with a planner and guidance from me, is practically self taught. And that is what works for her.
Madalyn on the other hand is a COMPLETELY different child. She is me. Stubborn. Willful. Argumentative. My way or the high way. If she was homeschooled, we'd just butt heads. And argue. I'd pull out all my hair. She would spend her days lounging in front of the television. Or hanging from the ceiling by her toenails. Crimes might be committed. Jail could be mentioned. BUT...all of these hijinx are reserved especially for me. She is a peach at school. I get reports about how sweet she is. How helpful. What a good friend she is. So, school is where she needs to be. It's what works for her.
Another really cool thing about having Madalyn in school is that as a second child, this is something that is completely her own. There is no prescendent set before her. No shadow of her sister's accomplishments. She can blaze her own path of glory.
From Tiffany:Have you always followed the classical approach to hs'ing?How long do you plan to hs your older daughter?If you weren't hs'ing, how would you spend your days? We have always homeschooled this way. If you want to read my attempt at explaining the Classical method, click here. At the moment, I would say we'll homeschool Katie through high school. We have managed to get so far ahead in certain subjects that I am not sure how she would integrate back into the system. However, our county has a special high school for students on a math or science track. And that is something I might consider.
If I wasn't homeschooling, I really don't know what I would be doing. Maybe I would go back to school. Get my PhD. Maybe I would sit here at my computer and blog all day. Wait...I do that already...
From Debbie: Do you and Katie have a strict homeschool routine? Or I guess my question is really, how do you manage your homeschool day? I am always curious about that with HS moms. We are ruled by the planner. I did a post about it when I first started blogging. I plan every three weeks - so Katie knows exactly what she is supposed to do on any given day. She can manage her own time. Do her subjects in whatever order she wishes. And then when she is done, she comes and shows me everything that she did. She cannot have priviledges until everything is checked off for the day - and that includes things like practicing piano.
Now, not all days are perfect. Sometimes I assign things for her to do that take longer than I would have anticipated. Or there are doctor's appointments that mess with our time. Which is why the planner is written in pencil. And why she does a lot of work in the car.
And this is what we accomplished over the past two weeks:
LANGUAGE ARTS: We are moving along with Daily Grammar. And I decided to stop Wordly Wise for a bit. She was getting a little overwhelmed with the volumne of her school work. I want to figure out a way to break up the assignments a little more before I work it back into her schedule. I have made writing her blog part of her weekly work. She has to update it at least three times a week. And right now she has posted the first two parts of a story. It's really good. Click here if you want to read it - I know she'd love some comment luv.
I also continue to be impressed with her work with Write at Home. They started out with just an assessment - to write about themselves. Then they went back to basics. With how to form sentences. How to make them interesting. Here is her post about one of those exercises. She had to write sentences using all different subjects and verbs. You should see the silly sentences she created for the next assignment. I'll have to get her to post those. This week her assignment is to write her first narrative paragraph.
LOGIC -- We finished her first book and moved into the second. It's the same activities she did in the first book, but it's stepped up the difficulty.
GEOGRAPHY -- We have spent the past two weeks studying Japan. We (we meaning Katie) read about the Shinto religion. She made a Japanese screen. Read lots of Japanese stories. Read about traditional holidays such as Children's Day. And in the middle of our week, we went to Japan Fest. Where the kids got to make lanterns:
Get a tattoo:
See bonsai trees (they had soooo many questions for the guys in this area. Wanting to know how they trained the trees to do that. How they got them in rocks. They were completely mesmerized. I knew they would like the festival. I didn't know that this would be one of their favorite parts.):
Eat Japanese food:
See Kimonos (oh, were they gorgeous):And they even got their names written phonetically in Japanese:Here is Katie's version of the events. Next week we are moving on to study Greece. Because the Greek festival is this weekend.
HISTORY: We continued with ancient Egypt. Katie finished reading "Tales from Ancient Egypt" and "The Golden Goblet." And this weekend she is starting "Mara, Daughter of the Nile." We went to the library to do research on how pyramids are built. And did a section of different forms of art and recreation during this time period. I am trying to figure out when we can go see the Egyptian collection at the Michael C Carlos museum. I had planned to go next weekend...but Katie is going camping with girl scouts. So many things to do, so little time!
BIOLOGY: Katie has been reading about different protective measures animals use to survive. Things like: body coverings, camouflage, coloring, mimicry...
MATH: We finished our sections on geometry and tessalations and this week moved to volume.
LATIN: She is still reviewing materials from last year. And then this week moved on to learn about third declension nouns.
So...what about you? Have you been going to any festivals in your area? Did you like to write stories when you were younger? What time period was/is your favorite in history? Have you ever contemplated homeschooling?