Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Put a Piece of Art up in Your Home - Scholé Everyday

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Thanks for coming back another day of our month of Scholé Everyday!   If you missed the first post which explains what's going on, take a minute to read it.  Remember, these are just going to be short posts with an idea to encourage you in the way of restful learning.


Today my encouragement to you is to:

Put a Piece of Art up in Your Home


I was struck when I heard Dr. Perrin talk about contemplating the Good, the True, and the Beautiful.  One thing he said is that in order to encourage your kids to do this, you have to place good, true, and beautiful things in front of them!  Makes sense, doesn't it?  He said that if your kids are bored, it just means that they are not contemplating the Good, the True, and the Beautiful.  Brilliant!  So, let's get started and give our kids something to contemplate!

When I first thought of bringing art into my home, my first thought was that it would be expensive and that would be difficult because I am pretty cheap.  (Dr. Perrin also talked about how sometimes it is worth spending money on things that will enrich our souls even though they don't have any real tangible worth.)  You might be thinking the same thing, so I wanted to share some ideas with you for how you can get art in your home pretty cheaply.

  • Buy poster prints of fine art and frame them.  I recently bought about 6 of them for just a few dollars each.  The frame was the most expensive part, but you might have one at home already.  Here is one that I have up in my home right now: Van Gough Turquoise Almond Branches in Bloom

  • Go to a bookstore (preferably a used bookstore, well, or amazon now that I think of it) and look for large books of art.  Find one filled with big pictures, cut them out and frame them!  I have this big Norman Rockwell book from my parents, and I recently found an O'Keefe  book in the used section of Barnes and Noble.  

  •  Calendars!  I've started to see calendars in the stores again.  Look for a fine arts one, or one of one specific artist's work, and cut out the pictures. (Here's an example of one from Renoir.)  These may not be huge, but you could put them in a smaller frame to sit on an end table or at your child's school table.  Then switch out the picture each week.

Do you have fine art up in your home?  What are you tips for encouraging your kids to contemplate beautiful things?  This is not something that comes naturally to me, but like I mentioned, I've spent a few dollars on some prints, and I'm hoping that will be a good start!  My hope is to change the pictures up about every month, so my family will have a variety of artists to admire throughout this year.



If you are purposing to incorporate scholé into your home this year, I'd love to hear from you!  Share with me what you are doing or how these ideas have impacted your homeschool and I can compile your stories in to a post.  I'd love to even have some guest bloggers if you'd like to write a whole post about how you are using scholé in your homeschool this year!  Contact me and let me know how you are doing!


Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace
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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Trivium Tuesdays - Classical Link-Up #125


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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



My favorite post from last week was Are You Teaching From Rest or Fear from Classically Homeschooling.  If you have been reading here this month, you'll know that I've been focusing on teaching from rest, so it's no surprise that this post stuck out to me!   I am just always so encouraged and inspired when I read about teaching from rest.  Go ahead, hop on over and get inspired too!


Your Favorite from Last Week


Last week's most clicked post was Teaching Grammar and Logic Stage Math Classically from Aspired Living.  Kyle has some ideas that might be a little different than what you are used to...or maybe you do the same thing!  Go and find out, if you missed the post 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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Monday, September 15, 2014

Sit Down with Your Kids and Talk - Scholé Everyday

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Thanks for coming back for more of our month of Scholé Everyday!   If you missed the first post which explains what's going on, take a minute to read it.  Remember, these are just going to be short posts with an idea to encourage you in the way of restful learning.

I have an interesting observation for my month of scholé.  Usually I am a pretty simple person, who leads a pretty simple life.  I purposely do not schedule too much in my days because I just don't like unnecessary business.  For some reason, this month has been jam packed!  I don't know if it just has to do with school starting again, and everybody getting a new start for fall, or what, but I am busier this month than I have been in a long time...and it's stressing me out!  It's just so funny to me that the month I want to focus on restful learning is the month that I'm extra busy.  It is making it more challenging than I thought it would be, but that only makes it more important that I'm doing this.

Today my encouragement to you (and me!) is to:

Sit Down with Your Kids and Talk


If you are like me this month (or like most of America everyday), your days get so busy that everything gets rushed and no one really has time to sit and enjoy one another.  Make time for that today!  If you are still working on school today, why don't you cut out a half hour early and just have a good conversation with your kids.  Talk about a book they are reading, their latest hobby, their friends...or anything else!  The important thing is that they feel like you really care.

I have great memories of doing nothing but sitting with my parents and just talking.  In fact, I still appreciate that my mom is willing to listen to everything that is on my mind =)

If it won't work today, I encourage you to try to sit and enjoy talking with your kids sometime this week.  Maybe you could make some hot chocolate or serve cookies, or just something to make it special!  Maybe you can sit outside and observe the leaves changing color, or maybe you will sit on your couch and just be comfy! Or maybe one morning you will gather your kids into your bed and all stay there and chat for a while...whatever works for you and your kids!




If you are purposing to incorporate scholé into your home this year, I'd love to hear from you!  Share with me what you are doing or how these ideas have impacted your homeschool and I can compile your stories in to a post.  I'd love to even have some guest bloggers if you'd like to write a whole post about how you are using scholé in your homeschool this year!  Contact me and let me know how you are doing!


Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace
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Friday, September 12, 2014

Take it Outside - Scholé Everyday

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Thanks for coming back to another day of our month of Scholé Everyday!   If you missed the first post which explains what's going on, take a minute to read it.  Remember, these are just going to be short posts with an idea to encourage you in the way of restful learning.

How is your month going so far?  I have been pretty consistent about having classical music on when my kids come out each morning.  We are all enjoying it!  We have had some flowers on the table, but now that I think of it, I should go cut some more from our garden =)  I am looking forward to meeting with a friend next week for some good conversation.  Which things from this series have you incorporated so far?

Today my encouragement to you is to:

Take it Outside!


I live in Michigan, and it is starting to get chilly.  Now that isn't to say that we won't have another 90 degree day, because that is how Michigan is, but fall is definitely on the horizon!

Why don't you pick a subject today and take the kids outside to do it?  Some subjects are not as conducive to this as others, but at least you could take a book out and have a read aloud session.  It is hard to not contemplate the true, the good, and the beautiful when you are outside, so it is the perfect place to enjoy some restful learning!

If you still have some nice weather left in your area, you could purpose to do one school lesson outside each week until it gets too cold =)  I know your kids would enjoy it, and I bet it would be good for your soul as well!



If you are purposing to incorporate scholé into your home this year, I'd love to hear from you!  Share with me what you are doing or how these ideas have impacted your homeschool and I can compile your stories in to a post.  I'd love to even have some guest bloggers if you'd like to write a whole post about how you are using scholé in your homeschool this year!  Contact me and let me know how you are doing!


Teaching from Rest: A Homeschooler's Guide to Unshakable Peace
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Thursday, September 11, 2014

Conversational Latin? Yes, with Mango Languages!

Mango Language Homeschool e-Learning Software
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I was provided with this program to review and was compensated for my time.  All opinions are my own!

We are classical homeschoolers over here, and I know many of you are too.  That means that many of us are teaching Latin to our kids.  The biggest problem with learning Latin is that it is not very easy to get a feel for how the language sounds.  With other languages, you can watch a movie, visit the country it is spoken it, or even just hear it spoken in the grocery store, but with Latin being a dead language you can't do that.

When I heard about Mango Languages, I was excited because it is a program that teaches over 60 languages by having students listen to the spoken language and repeat it back.   At first, I figured that the dead languages wouldn't be a part of the program, but I was thrilled to find Latin, Greek, and even Hebrew!


Mango Languages for Homeschool



Mango Language Homeschool e-Learning Software

Mango Languages lets you be as hands on or hands off as you want to be.  Personally, I sat with my son each time he did a lesson because he is only 6 years old, but if you have older children they could easily do the program themselves, freeing you up from having to teach a subject!  My son really enjoyed doing each lesson, saying the words and combining them into sentences.

First, you pick your language.  Like I said, there are over 60 languages available and within each language there are even different course options and dialects to choose from.  I think that it is really neat that you don't have to stick to one language.  While it would be smart to focus on one, you are free to browse other languages.  What a neat way to familiarize yourself with what is out there.

Then you get started on your lesson!  Some courses have pre-tests and placement tests (Latin did not, but I think the more common languages do) to ensure you are doing the right lesson, and curriculum outlines for you, the parent.

Each lesson is guided by a voice that reads slides and instructs the student what to do.  I love how simple it is to follow.  At first I thought I was missing something because I didn't really need to navigate to start the second lesson, but then I realized that it just knew where I left off and took me right there.  It even keeps track of how many minutes you child has spent on their language lessons.  It's nice to see that, as visual proof that they have been working hard!


Mango Language Homeschool e-Learning Software
 

How Does Mango Help you Learn Another Language?


Mango Languages teaches in a really nice, no pressure, confidence building way.  For our Latin lessons, the speaker would read a sentence and we would try to read it back.  Then she would break apart each word or phrase and explain what it was and we would repeat it again.  Sometimes she would have us guess how to say something based on previous rules we had learned.  If we weren't sure, we would guess and then click the button to hear the right answer.  If we thought we knew it, but needed more time, we would just add time to the clock!  If we needed to hear a pronunciation again, no problem, just click the replay button.  It is completely your pace.

From time to time, a mini grammar lesson was interjected.  These were helpful and answered just the questions that were starting to come up in my mind.  There are also cultural incites, given at just the right moment.

Mango Language Homeschool e-Learning Software

In Latin, the word order in a sentence can often be mixed around.  That can make it confusing to figure out which word is which.  Mango solves this problem by color coding the words they show you.  If there is an English and a Latin sentence on the same screen, each word will be in a different color and the corresponding word in the other language will have the same color.  Neat!  Plus, if you hover over a word, it will show your the way to pronounce it and even give you the option to have it spoken.

I give it an A+ for being intuitive and easy to use.

Here is a little peek at how the lessons go.  My son was controlling the mouse, so forgive the slow navigation =)




Who should try Mango Languages?


Have I mentioned that you can try Mango Languages for free?!   You can also use discount code: HS5PM to get $5 off of your monthly rate.  Or if you are really lucky you can win a Kindle Fire with Mango already loaded onto it! (Enter the giveaway at the end of the post.)

So who should take advantage of these offers?

  • Parents, Mango is perfect for you if you want to understand the language your child is studying on their own.  It is also the perfect way to familiarize yourself with a language that you plan on teaching your child.

  •  Teenagers who want to study a language on their own, or maybe even try out a few!

  •  Moms who want one subject to be taken off of their plate, or who just don't feel qualified to teach a foreign language.

  • Younger students who want to hear what the fruit of their labor can accomplish and who want to be able to say sentences right away (not just random vocab).

  • Families with multiple students who want to learn different languages.  Mango has it all in one place and you can register up to 6 kids in their homeschool program!
 
  • Anyone who wants to learn ancient Greek or Hebrew in order to study the Bible more deeply.

  • Classical homeschoolers who want to be able to hear the dead languages spoken and increase their ability to read original works.

  • Anyone who is planning on traveling to a foreign country.  Mango has it all, including mini courses designed for specific purposes like medical terminology or food.

Definitely take advantage of the free trial or jump right in and use the discount code (HS5PM).  Mango Languages would make a great supplement to what you are already using, or would perfectly fill the language gap in your homeschool curriculum.


Keep up with Mango Language here:



Mango Languages Kindle Fire Giveaway




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