Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Trivium Tuesdays - Classical Link-Up #117


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Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  For those of you who are new here today, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.



Don't forget to follow my Pinterest boards that are a part of the All Things Classical List!

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Also, please remember to only link up posts that have to do with homeschooling using the classical model of education.  Thank you for understanding this link-up's theme.


Featured Post from Last Week



Everyone wants to save money, that's for sure!  Homeschooling can be quite expensive, but it definitely doesn't have to be.  Check out these tips from Candid Diversions!  (Most clicked from last week!)


This Week's Link-Up


Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please link back to this post in some way. You can use my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) if you'd like so others can learn about this link-up! Button code: <a href="http://www.livingandlearningathome.com/" target="_blank" title="Trivium Tuesdays"><img alt="Living and Learning at Home" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZNtNfqeG_W4/U0qj7mUZCfI/AAAAAAAAFbo/vhEStFGbogw/s1600/Trivium+Tuesdays+-+button.png"/></a>
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!


I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         

If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)


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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Lessons as Instruments of Education - part 2

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This post contains an affiliate link to the book we are discussing.

Hello!  Welcome to our continuing discussing the book Home Education by Charlotte Mason.   I'm hoping that these discussions will be really practical and encouraging for all of us!  I will bring up some areas of the chapter that I'm trying to implement in my home this summer, and I would love for you to share your thoughts in the comment section below!

Lessons as Instruments of Learning


We are back to finish talking about Part 5 today.  I really enjoyed this read, although it was very long!  I enjoyed picking out the similarities between the Charlotte Mason style and the classical method of education.  Like I discovered last week, there are definitely some differences in the teaching methods, but there are also many similarities!    This part of the chapter covered many subjects, so I will just hit some of them and pull out what was interesting to me.  I'd love for you to share the parts that interested you as well!


Writing


This is what I think of when I think of  when I think of Charlotte Mason: copywork, dictation, narration, etc.  I love copywork.  If you follow this blog, you probably know that I have another site, Classical Copywork, dedicated just to copywork.  I like how she said to have the child produce something copied perfectly.  I am probably not as strict as she would be in this matter, but copying something exactly is the point of copywork, so I do keep that in mind.  She also mentions keeping it to no more than 10-15 minutes.  That is always a good reminder for me, because my son sometimes takes forever to do copywork and I need to remember to probably require less of him (but still quality writing) or else have him stop after 15 minutes and come back to it the next day.

One thing that I have never done is transcription, but I think I would like to start using it.  Do any of you use it?  If you are not familiar, it is having a child look at a word and then write it from memory.  Charlotte Mason says it is the start of learning to spell.  I am sure it follows her "picture the shape of a word" method, which I don't love, but I can still see the merit of it.  It is like a bridge between copywork and dictation.  She suggests having a child pick a verse from a favorite poem and write it using transcription.  Have your child fill a notebook with transcribed verses like this.  I think that would be such a neat thing to do!

The last part here under the subject of writing would be composition.  I loved how her ideas on composition reflected the classical model so well.  Here are a few quotes showing how she clearly thinks that young children should be soaking up information, not coming up with unique ideas of their own:

"The proper function of the mind of the young scholar is to collect material for the generalizations of after-life."  

"For children under nine, the question of composition resolves itself into that of narration". 

"Composition is as natural as jumping and running to children who have been allowed due use of books.  They should narrate in the first place, and they will compose, later readily enough; but they should not be taught 'composition.'"

Of course you probably know that I am going to disagree with that very last statement that children should not be taught composition.  I surely don't think that grammar stage children should be taught composition, but I think it should be taught as a child grows older.



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Math 


Demonstrate everything.  Use manipulatives and let young children use them freely in their lessons.  Don't move onto using abstract symbols until your child understands the concepts using manipulatives.  I really appreciate Ray's Arithmetic for this reason.  I think it is just the type of math curriculum that Charlotte Mason would have liked. (It doesn't cover all mathematical subjects, but it definitely gives your child a great understanding of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.)



Geography & History


I think she approaches the subject of geography using the idea of Multum non Multa (Much not Many).  She recommends a child learning everything they can about a part of geography that they are interested in.  Then at some point, maps need to be brought in.  She encourages children to learn to draw plans of a room, then of a yard, town, etc.

The same goes for history.   I love these quotes:

...A  subject which should be to the child an inexhaustible storehouse of ideas.   

Let him linger pleasantly over the history of a single man, a short period, until he thinks the thoughts of that man, is at home  in the ways of that period.  Though he is reading and thinking of the lifetime of a single man, he is really getting intimately acquainted with the history of a whole nation for a whole age. 

I love those!  She also recommends the ideas of keeping a timeline (book of centuries), drawing favorites scenes of history, and 'playing' history.


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Art & Handicrafts


Once again Charlotte Mason shows her classical ways by saying, 

A six year old should begin to both express himself and to appreciate, and his appreciation should be well in advance of his power to express what he sees or imagines.

She recommends studying one artist at a time, studying a few works from that artist. And one more beautiful quote:

We cannot measure the influence that one or another artist has upon the child's sense of beauty...he is enriched more than we know.

Last up is handicrafts.  I have always loved this idea.  I have tried starting a few simple things with my children, but they are still pretty young for this.  Do you have a time in the day for your children to work on 'handicrafts' of some sort?  What do you do?  She tells us that the projects they are working on should be pieces worth something, not just things to throw out. She encourages us to teach our children to do things well, keeping in mind their scope of ability.





Thanks for reading along this week!  What did you think of this chapter?  Leave comments here on the blog post, or share about it on social media (#ClassicalMamasRead).  I'll be sharing too, so follow me on facebook, twitter, or google+ and we can chat about it there as well!  Don't forget, if you want to share your thoughts about Home Education on your own blog, link it up below so we can all come and visit!

Next week we will be finishing up our discussion of Home Education by Charlotte Mason.  If you haven't gotten your own copy yet, make sure you grab a Kindle version for under $2, a paper back, or read it for free on Ambleside Online!



Classical Mamas Read Link-Up



Did you write about Home Education by Charlotte Mason on your blog?  Have you been reading and blogging about another book (for you, not a children's book)?  Do you have a book club going on at your blog (once again, not for a children's book)?  I'd love for you link up here so we can all be encouraged by each other and maybe find another great book to read!

I'm going to keep this link-up ongoing since there aren't going to be a huge number of posts and then anyone new will be able to be encouraged by the other book reading ideas and discussions.  If the number of posts gets too large, I will fix it.

Please note, all posts must be on topic (about a book you are reading) and appropriate (think family friendly).

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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Get Ready for Cycle 3 - Classical Conversations Pinterests Boards

This post is for anyone who is getting ready to study American history & geography, anatomy, chemistry, or fine arts.  Of course this post is also for anyone who will be using Classical Conversations during cycle 3.  I shared yesterday that my family has decided to join CC for next year and I shared that so this one wouldn't be out of the blue =)


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I have been researching and planning for next year (like any good homeschool mom ;) and thought I would share some inspiration with all of you!  Here are a bunch of other people's Pinterest boards that have awesome ideas for all the subjects I mentioned.  First up are some that are Classical Conversations specific, then you'll see ones broken down by subject, and finally a few boards on CC tutor tips.

Click on each picture or name to check out the Pinterest board.  Don't forget to follow the boards for continued inspiration!   Enjoy!

(Warning: Remember that your children need you today.  Don't get sucked into the Pinterest vortex for too long at any one time =)


Cycle 3 Pinterest Boards


Mary from Homegrown Learners - CC Cycle 3


Jody from Everyday Beautiful - Classical Conversations Cycle 3


Colleen from Sola Gratia Mom - Cycle 3


Melanie from Psyco with 6's board - CC Cycle 3


American History


Suzette from Joy of Homemaking - Classical Conversations (Cycle 3 American History)




Ticia from Adventures in Mommydom - U.S. History


U.S. Geography


Ticia from Adventures in Mommydom - Geography State Studies




Anatomy & Chemistry




Ticia from Adventures in Mommydom - Anatomy


Ticia from Adventures in Mommydom - Things That Go Boom


Brandy from Half a Hundred Acre Wood - CC Cycle 3 Science


Classical Conversations Fine Arts



Classical Conversations Tutor Ideas








Hope these were helpful!  I know I'm going to be pouring over these boards for the next month or so.  Do you have Pinterest boards on any of these subjects?  Feel free to leave a link in the comments, I'd love to take a look!

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This post is a part of a "Favorite Pinterest Boards" theme done by the ladies of the iHomeschool Network.  Check out some of the other themes:



Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Why I Decided to Join Classical Conversations


I have been in love with the classical model of homeschooling for a long time...like before I even had kids =)  Many years ago, I remember reading about a program called Classical Conversations, but there were no communities near me and my kids were too little anyways.  Fast forward a few years and now there are handful of Classical Conversations communities within a half hour or so of me and both my kids are old enough for the program.  So, it would make sense that I would join, right?  Well, it still took me a while to come to that conclusion.
 
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Why I Originally Decided Against Classical Conversations


My son will be 6 for the coming school year, so we could have done Classical Conversations the last two years, but didn't.  Honestly, I have seriously considered joining probably about 6 times before now, but something always held me back.  I am the type of person who needs to completely research and understand something before making a decision.  Here are some of the things that were holding me back:

  • I was using and loving Veritas Press history. I didn't want to give it up, but it didn't make sense to add another history timeline and song to our repertoire.

  • Classical Conversations goes through history on a 3 year cycle, which is faster that I would prefer.

  • I like to control what we learn, so the idea of someone else's schedule didn't appeal to me.

  • The cost.  If CC was going to just be an add-on, I really couldn't justify the price.

  • I would have had to drive a half hour to get to a campus.  That's not too bad, but was not enticing.

  • We school year round and I wanted to be free to take breaks when I wanted, not be tied down to CC's schedule.


Why Now is the Time for My Family to try Classical Conversations


So many of you are a part of Classical Conversations communities, so I am reminded of the program frequently.  Summer came and (of course) I started thinking about CC again =)  For some reason, it just clicked this time.  Some things have changed and some of my thinking has changed.  Here is what was going through my head.

  • I still love Veritas Press, and am sad to leave it, but I don't feel as tied to it as I once did.  I even like how the CC cards focus on more of the world and are completely integrated.

  • I took some time to evaluate what was going well in our school from last year.  I realized that math and English were two subjects that we were doing really well.  Those are the two subjects you have to add on to your CC work.

  • My son loves learning history and science, but I wasn't giving it as much time as I should have been.  He learns well from reading independently, so I think it will work well for him to get a bunch of library books on the topics from our memory sentences and continue his learning in the week. (Something off my plate a bit.)

  • I still love to plan, but am also feeling overwhelmed lately, so I am looking forward to part of our curriculum being planned for me now.

  • There is a new campus opening this year in my city! (And I have a dear friend who will be there =)

  • I had already decided to break next year into trimesters, so the two 12 week CC sessions fit in perfectly.  I will just add a 12 week summer session, to complete the 'tri' in trimesters.

  • I found myself wishing that there were people around my area that I could get together with who were also using the Veritas Press curriculum.  People to have fun celebrations with, people who understand classical education, people who are studying the same thing we are.  I must be pretty hard headed, but I finally realized that is exactly what CC is, I just have to switch my timeline cards =)

So, there you have it!  I have officially decided to be a part of my local Classical Conversations community.  I am looking forward to the presentations, friendships, and memory work.  I am looking forward to moving on to American History.  My kids are already looking forward to learning the tin whistle =)  Most of all I'm looking forward to the community.

I went to a practicum last week and learned pretty much everything I need to know.  I still have a few reservations, but I am ready to give it a shot!  Who knows if this will be a long term schooling change, or if it will just be a one year experiment, but either way I am excited to see what this year will hold!

Are you a part of a CC community?  Any tips or thoughts to share?



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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Trivium Tuesdays - Classical Link-Up #116


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Welcome to another week of Trivium Tuesdays!  For those of you who are new here today, this is a link-up aimed at encouraging and informing other homeschoolers who use the Classical model of teaching.  Here we can share with each other and learn from one another.



Don't forget to follow my Pinterest boards that are a part of the All Things Classical List!

 photo AllThingsClassical-titlepic_zps4a3485e7.png

Also, please remember to only link up posts that have to do with homeschooling using the classical model of education.  Thank you for understanding this link-up's theme.


Featured Post from Last Week



Do you study Lain with your kids?  What age do you start? Pam, from Everyday Snapshots, shows us how Latin can be fun even for the littlest ones!


Your Favorite from Last Week


I think most homeschool families are in the thick of planning out next year's schedule.  We all want to get things done, but have flexibility at the same time, don't we?  No wonder why Planning a Flexible Homeschool Year from Maple Cottage Classical School was the most clicked from last week!


This Week's Link-Up


Here are the rules:
  • Your post must have to do (in some way) with classical homeschooling (any age children).
  • Your post may be from your archives as long as you only post it one time on this link-up.
  • Please link to your direct post, not your blog in general.
  • Please link back to this post in some way. You can use my Trivium Tuesdays button (found on my right sidebar) if you'd like so others can learn about this link-up! Button code: <a href="http://www.livingandlearningathome.com/" target="_blank" title="Trivium Tuesdays"><img alt="Living and Learning at Home" src="http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-ZNtNfqeG_W4/U0qj7mUZCfI/AAAAAAAAFbo/vhEStFGbogw/s1600/Trivium+Tuesdays+-+button.png"/></a>
  • It may be helpful to state in your link description what stage of the trivium or what subject your post is about, if applicable, so others can easily find posts they are interested in looking at.
  • Remember, everyone loves comments =) So don't be shy, and tell someone if you liked their post!


I reserve the right to remove any link-up that does not have to do with classical homeschooling.         

If you are a regular here at Trivium Tuesdays and have something to share that is a little off topic, but still would be an encouragement to the readers here, please still share it =)  I'm referring to people who are just trying to get their blog more exposure without following the rules above.

I will visit each of your blogs this week and feature my favorite link-up for all to see next week!  Also, if your blog has a button I will place it on my sidebar (under Friends to Visit) for the week until it is replaced by the next week's favorite =)


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