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End of school-year update

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We’re are about to finish up our year, so here is what we accomplished, our end of school-year update!  It sure makes me feel better to see it all written out.

(Much of this was written a year ago, but I’ve updated it according to what we actually did.)

Here are some of the fun things we have planned for the next school year.  I will have a 4th grader, 3rd grader, 1st grader, kindergartener, preschooler, 2 yo, and new baby!  I try to follow the “Ten Things to do Before Age 10? (classsical education) by the Bluedorns and a lot of Charlotte Mason’s ideas.


Older 3 kids in Bible Study Fellowship studying the book of Isaiah.  At home we read Proverbs, Daniel, Ruth, Esther, and I Samuel.   Daily Scripture memory practice, singing and memorizing praise songs and hymns (reading Hymns for a Child’s Heart, volumes 1 and 2), praying, and reading the Bible together.  Family devotions for Dad to read aloud–Jotham’s Journey and Amon’s Adventure.  Studied in church:  Ephesians, 1 and 2 Timothy, Genesis


Math-U-See for the older boys–finish Beta,  start and finish Gamma.  Practical/living math for the younger kids.  Math games, and on computer and iPad.


Handwriting Without Tears for four of the kids and copywork (of the book of Isaiah).


Apologia Exploring Creation With Human Anatomy and Physiology for the older four kids (reading at home, projects at a co-op, and notebooking pages).  We’ll also read science articles and narrate them.


Prima Latina for the older 2 boys.  This will include English grammar.


Civil War through the present.  (We only made it through 1939, but will continue the rest during the summer 2011.)

Use Story of the World (book and CD’s) as a “spine.” Add living books, notebooking/ lapbooking, and projects (crafts, cooking, etc.). We will use the Homeschool in the Woods Civil War and Reconstruction through Great Depression projects. Topics for 20th Century American history (Henry Ford, Panama Canal, The Titanic, Wright Brothers, WWI, Charles Lindbergh, Roaring 20?s, Women’s suffrage, The Great Depression, Theodore Roosevelt, Hoover Dam, WWII, Propaganda, NATO, Cold War, Korean War, Vietnam War, Civil Rights Movement, MLK, Rosa Parks, JFK, Space Race, man on moon, Watergate, Persian Gulf War, end of Cold War/ fall of Berlin Wall and end of USSR, Sept. 11, 2001, War in Iraq, War in Afghanistan, Y2K, 20th C. technology, 20th C. music styles and musicians.

Some of the books we’ll read include:

Civil War– original sources: Gettysburg Address, Emancipation Proclamation, letters of Mr. and Mrs. Jackson; biographies: Abraham Lincoln (D’Aulaire), Clara Barton (Benge), Harriet Tubman (Benge), The Red Badge of Courage; historical fiction: Drinking Gourd (Monjo), Abe Lincoln’s Hat (Brenner and Cook), Across Five Aprils (Hunt); music of the Civil War; go to a Civil War re-enactment in July; watched “Gone With the Wind”.

WWI– the autobiography of Sergeant York (Sergeant York and the Great War) and watched the movie “Sergeant York”; Rascal (North)

WWII– autobiography of Maria von Trapp (The Story of the the Trapp Family Singers) and watch “Sound of Music”, World War II for Kids: A History with 21 Activities (Panchyk), The Good Fight: How WWII Was Won (Ambrose), It Began With a Parachute (Rang); watch “League of Grateful Sons”

Other historical fiction we read: Strawberry Girl, Titanic Crossing, The Great Chicago Fire, The Story of the Wright Brothers and Their Sister, The Great Wheel, The Story of My Life (Helen Keller, on CD), Anne of Green Gables, Anne of Avonlea

Current Events:

God’s World News

Answers Magazine

Other Read-Alouds (or kids read silently to selves):

Lamplighter books; Pinocchio; The Railway Children (E. Nesbit); A Place for Zero (LoPresti); Eats, Shoots and Leaves:  Why Commas Really Do Make a Difference (Lynn Truss); From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (Konigsburg); Around the World in 80 Days (Verne, on CD); Kidnapped (Stevenson); The Yearling (Rawlings)   –We didn’t read any of these yet, will carry on for the 2011-2012 school year.

**Books we did read aloud this year:  Little Britches, Caddie Woodlawn, Hitty and Her First 100 Years, Harriet Tubman (Benge), The Prince and the Pauper (on CD), Elsie Dinsmore (books 1 and 2), Across Five Aprils, Kidnapped, Hymns for a Child’s Heart (books 1 and 2), Story of the World (vol. 4 on CD), God’s World News magazines, Tuck Everlasting, A Thanksgiving to Remember (on CD), Acts, Odyssey history CDs, Stories of the Pilgrims (on CD), Scarlet Pimpernel, I Will Repay, Clara Barton (Benge), Strawberry Girl, Summer With the Moody’s, Titanic Crossing, The Great Chicago Fire, The Story of the Wright Brothers and Their Sister, The Red Badge of Courage, Sergeant York, The Great Wheel, The Story of My Life (Helen Keller, on CD), Jonathan Park (most recent CDs), Robinson Crusoe (on CD), Anne of Green Gables, Anne of Avonlea, Jotham’s Journey, Amon’s Adventure.


Teach America to Read and Spell (TATRAS) with the preschooler and kindergartener.  Reading practice with the 1st grader and 3rd grader using Rod and Staff’s Bible readers.  Reading practice with the kindergartener using McGuffey readers and Bob books.


Violin for the older 4 (with a private teacher).  Guitar for the oldest (on his own and with Dad’s help).  Singing hymns and some part singing.  Early childhood music/movement for the preschoolers (taught by me).  Started piano lessons for 3 oldest kids in April.


Fit it in whenever we can.  Artist/Picture study of  American artists of the 20th Century (choose from Cassatt, Wyeth, Norman Rockwell, James Whistler, Warhol, O’Keeffe, Hopper, Grandma Moses,  Ansel Adams, etc.)  Continue these during the summer.

Physical Education:

T-Tapp (TappCore), running laps, and exercise bike at home.  P.E. at our co-op every other Friday.  Swim lessons in fall and spring.  Upward basketball for 3 older kids in winter.  Ballet videos for girls at home.  LifeSports camp in the summer.

Field Trips:

At least one per month.

Civil War Re-enactment, Serpent Safari, apple picking, farm festival, Peter Pan (musical), Nutcracker ballet, Fiddler on the Roof (musical), Egypt Fair, Civil War Homeschool Program, Police Station, Band Concert (WCA), Exotic Pet Show, Father/Daughter Dinner and Dance, Jump Zone, Botanic Gardens, Violin Recital.


Books to read–A New Coat for Anna (Ziefert), Ox-Cart Man (Hall), Hoss (Kim Lewis), Doctor DeSoto (Steig)–do these next year.

Bible Lapbooks –do these next year

Life Skills:

Learn “Speed Cleaning” by Jeff Campbell.


Daily narration by the older 5 kids.

Geography Bee for oldest child.

Violin Recital

Oldest son started writing a story

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