Friday, September 24, 2010

Weekly Wrap-Up

Actually, this is more like monthly wrap-up. I just can't seem to get on the ball about wrapping up our weeks.

I love our schedule this year—just having two full days at home is blissful. We are now 5 weeks into this year, and I am thrilled with the smooth flow of our days. My kids are, for the most part, wonderfully cooperative. Every now and then I have to threaten additional schoolwork for whining, and that always works like a charm.

We finished The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Of course, it was as wonderful as it has always been in the 35 years I've been reading it. We watched a documentary (Chronicling Narnia) about C.S. Lewis which the kids deemed very boring. I thought it was interesting. We did of course watch the movie after reading the book, and I loved it all over again. We all did notice more "wrongs" this time since the book is fresh on our minds, but I still think it's a great movie.

I have two main books that I'm using as we go through the Narnia series. Further Up and Further In seems to be the one everyone has heard of, but I'm finding Heather and David Kopp's Roar: A Christian Family Guide to the Chronicles of Narnia to be much, much better. The discussion questions and Biblical parallels are fantastic in this book, and the authors sprinkle in facts in small, colorful tidbits. I totally recommend this for anyone reading through Narnia.

So I decided to be completely rebellious in our reading order. We started with LWW because I think one must enter Narnia for the first time through the wardrobe. (Granted, this isn't my kids' first introduction to Narnia anyway, but whatever.) But I've decided to read The Magician's Nephew second rather than waiting for its traditional spot much later on. I like them to be able to make those immediate connections between these two books. We're only three chapters into The Magician's Nephew, but I can tell already that it was the right thing to do.

In other areas, I'm really happy with Teaching Textbooks. Laurel is doing pre-algebra, and while I won't claim that she loves it, I will say that math is a much happier place for both of us this year. I decided to skip a whole year of math for Duncan because Saxon 54 and 65 looked pretty much exactly the same. That was a good decision. He's flying through 65. I'm always amazed at how much the kids grow over the summer. That's what always boggles me about the current trend toward year-round schools with the premise that "kids lose so much over the summer." I don't get that. My kids have always made a huge jump from the end of one school year to the beginning of the next. I think the time off is essential.

Cub Scouts and American Heritage Girls started back in full swing, as did our co-op classes.

I'm teaching/co-teaching three classes at co-op this year: Readers' Theatre for 3rd-5th grade, and then Creative Writing and Literature Circle for 6th-8th graders. It's all so much fun. I do look forward to teaching high-school level literature again next year when Laurel enters 9th grade.

We've also had lots of time for fun. One day we drove a couple of hours away to deliver 40 pairs of shoes for the 10,000 Pairs of Shoes Project. Another day my parents took us to Dollywood, which was blissfully uncrowded.

A boy in our co-op has a leading role in one of the shows, and we were excited to finally get to see him in that.

Our college boy came home for about 24 hours, and of course I soaked in every moment of him. He absolutely loves his classes and pretty much everything about being in college. He was meant for a life of learning.

Laurel went to her first dance last weekend.

Yes, we have an awesome support group with things like dances, bonfires, and even a prom. She had a fantastic time, and I look forward to many more teen events this year.

Linked up at the Weekly Wrap-Up


  1. Thanks so much for dropping by and for the spelling curriculum info!

    Sounds like you've had a great week. We love, love, love all things Narnia:) I'm glad you're enjoying The Magician's Nephew~it's one of my faves from the series!

  2. I just signed my daughter up for AHG. She is super excited!

  3. Of course it is very controversial about year-round schooling 'because kids lose so much' but I really think that it matters what is done during that time off, how well they do when they resume classes. What works for some definitely doesn't work for others!
    Interesting take on reading LWW and then TMN...I'd always thought it was written in the correct order myself and just couldn't stand putting TMN first. But it is a minor thing in the bigger scheme of things. They are wonderful books, no matter the order you read them ;)

  4. We are loving Narnia this year too! I really like Further Up and Further In as a curriculum, and no matter how many times we've read the books, the kids and I enjoy them anew each time!

  5. We used a nice study I found online for TLWAW when we did it a few years back. But whatever works for you is great. I miss AHG, I still wish DD wanted to stay in it, just move troops. Oh well, at least we have Venturing. I did find out that one of 'my girls' became the first Stars and Stripes recipient in Ga.! Whoo HOO!! :-)

  6. Sounds like a great week or month.

    We are also reading the Chronicles of Narnia but have started with The Magicians Nephew. Let's just say I am less than impressed as I haven't seen anything biblical about it as of yet!

    Have a great day.

  7. Looks like good things going on all around!

    My kids are losers. I mean, of course, the sort that lose a lot over a long break. Math, mainly. So long breaks are a hindrance rather than a help to us.

  8. We just finished Chronicles of Narnia- for maybe the 5th time = )I'm curious why you are only at home 2 full days?

  9. I got Teaching Textbooks for Cora (6th) this year. We both LOVE it! She wanted to do math last night at 10pm. Huge step in the right direction.

    You know what I love about homeschooling? My kids will, on a random day at a random time, grab their books and want to "do school". We do have set school hours during the week...but I just love the fact that it is (mostly) not tedium to them.

  10. I just purchased Teaching Textbooks for my 9th grader. I quit the other program that I was using and started all over. She is very successful with this and now math is not the hated subject. I love your days and can't wait for us to get our kinks worked out so our days may be as relaxed as your days! I am teaching 2 classes each week,and, I think that it's too much for my kids to get used to what they are supposed to be doing since it's all brand new and they are young. I'm feeling a little guilty that I don't have that time with them too!


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