I went for a walk a few days ago, and Bug accompanied me. People chuckle when they see me out walking the country roads with several cats loping along beside me.
Sometimes they mew at me for going too fast. I would, however, like to point out to them that if they did not cover both sides of the road as well as the tall grass along the side, it would not be so hard to keep up. Ruffy, however, simply cannot follow fast enough. She runs along side me and eventually begins to howl when she gets too far behind. I always end up walking back to pick her up. She rests on my shoulder for a moment or two and then gets the itch to be down again...until she notices once more that I'm way too far ahead of her.
Frequently the kitties like to walk ahead of me. But since they do not know for sure which way I am going (I may know I'm going straight down the road for a half mile as I always do, but they never seem to figure this out), they tend to walk as close to my feet as possible to make sure that they are going the right way. Sometimes I scrape my feet along the ground, making loud scary noises, in hopes that they will stay out from under my feet. Sometimes I kick the gravel as I walk. Other times I nudge the back end of the kitty with my foot, hoping they do not like the feel of that and will move over. Considering that I've been doing this since we moved to the farm, I'd say my methods have not been very effective.
For the love of kitties!
This morning is cloudy again. Dreary. This would be a good day to curl up with a book, a warm blanket, and a pillow in the bay window (the pillow is for the little nap that would be sure to follow). Bethany has the flu, the real "influenza" with a fever that has lasted over 4 days, cough, aches, and chills. Oh, how I pray it does not spread to the rest of us!
Today I take another Latin test. I've been getting A's on all my tests so far. It certainly is a lot of work to learn this language. Bethany did most of her Latin studies on her own, but JM and I are slogging along side by side. I went through a 3 inch pile of flashcards last night. Alienus, locus/loca, laudo, laudare, laudavi, laudatus... And then those macrons! I only learn the macrons that are part of the suffixes. I don't know if that is O.K., but I'm limited to doing what retains sanity, right?!? Wish me luck!
I'd love to think deep thoughts and share wisdom, but I am called to dishes, scooping cat litter, cleaning toilets, checking on the baby calf, starting up the wood stove, and planning meals for the day. You know, with my mind as foggy as it is this morning, these are probably good tasks for this gray-haired marm. Maybe tomorrow I will wax poetic.
Don't forget to notice beauty...
We are behind in our school schedule even though we have been diligently trying to get school done each day. Last night I finished my Latin assignment at 9:30 P.M. Then I went to bed with a book on Ethics and read until late. I've been getting my daughter's materials in order for her half credit of World Views, Philosophy, and Ethics. There are some good materials available! I'll post my list once I get it put together.
Take care today, and let me know if you have seen the sun! Or even better--if you have seen the stars. It seems as though the only time the sky clears is during the day. I do think that the warm days and cool nights are causing a lot of fog, clouds, and rain. Last night I was awakened by thunder again.
Go in search of beauty!
How did this happen? William of Orange quivers at the sight of Snowflake. Snowflake quivers, too--only his is more like the hunter catching sight of his prey! When we found these two sitting together they both had their eyes partly closed as if they were dozing. Who'd have ever guessed!
Last night when I went to bed, I saw that most of the clouds had passed, and the stars were out. I just could not convince myself to get my telescope out at that hour, though. I wish it had been clear a couple of hours earlier. Alas! This morning the sun is bright and there is almost no snow left anywhere. It feels balmy like spring. This year I must plant some bulbs in my garden so that we can have tulips and crocuses next year! I've never made it a priority, but I wish each spring that I had done so. Blessings!
I was planning to make a list of materials I have used for homeschooling that I liked. Would anyone be interested? Lots of folks came to visit for my "Ideal Class Schedule", but the feedback via the comment box was, um, well...not too overwhelming. LOL! Would this interest you? Thanks!
Enjoy your weekend. I only wish the skies were clear for a little night sky viewing. Rain and clouds are predicted for days and days and days...
Wishing you clear skies!
Someone has asked me to put together an “ideal” class list
starting with 7th or 8th grade. This is quite a task! The
main problem is that no student is truly ideal, and, therefore, I am not making
a schedule for anyone! For example, if our student is good at math and science
or plans a career that requires a lot of it, then we would push into more
classes in those fields. If, on the other hand, the child struggles with them,
then we would need to pare back. Another problem is that no one child is likely to do all the subjects in each area; if we, as parents, expect an average child to do it all, we court the chance of burn out or worse, rebellion. It is good to nudge our children into higher levels; it is not good to frustrate them beyond what they can do. This "ideal" class list is not the road map for every child. It is something to help you think through the options and think ahead.
Starting to prepare for high school in 7th and 8th grade is good because we need to consider the preparation that is needed: just as in bowling, when I had to learn how to stand, swing, and step up to the line prior to throwing the ball, so does the 7th and 8th grader need to learn how to study, take tests, and write compositions before getting too far into high school. The junior high years is the time to evaluate your child's skills and hone them. If you wait until 9th grade, the child's learning curve will show up on his transcript. This does not help the scholarship application process or the college search!
Today I’ll put down the classes I’d consider for an “average but good” student. I’ll not suggest AP or Honors classes since I’ve no experience with them. I have not looked into the colleges that are highly competitive, so I will not try to put that into my equation. Since I know I’ll find that I’ve forgotten some things (please, let me know if you see something!), I’ll plan to come back and edit this post from time to time.
Another day I’ll post about materials that I have used and can recommend. So here goes…
Composition and grammar
Literature (includes poetry, drama, short stories, and literary analysis, as well as American, British, World, and Christian works)
Vocabulary (at least one year of study)
Good things to add if available would be theater, forensics, and speaking contests.
Pre-calculus (or some may want to take only Trigonometry)
These are the math classes that are considered high school math. If a child is going into a field that requires higher math and he has not taken these classes, he will be able to do “catch up” by taking them in college, but colleges refer to them as remedial math. If, however, he is not going to need math for his field of study, most colleges we've looked into only require Algebra I & II and Geometry.
United States History
World Views, Philosophy, and Ethics
I know that The Well-Trained Mind suggests doing the history cycle in a 4-year rotation, but I did elementary history in a 6-year cycle. When my older children were small, we did a semester of World History and a semester of U.S. History each year so that they did not have to wait until they got to the 1700’s to study U.S. History. When doing a 6-year cycle, a child can opt to begin a 4-year cycle of history in 7th grade. Another option is to finish off the elementary cycle should you need the time; or you can cover topics as an introduction to the classes the child will do in high school such as What Happened to Penny Candy (Economics) or Civics. This leaves the last two years of high school for Government, Economics, Geography, and World Views.
Foreign Language (2 credits minimum with at least 2 credits
in one language):
Latin (required for 1 or more of those credits)
Greek or modern language
Junior high science classes need to include memorization and
test taking to prepare the child for the rigors of high school:
Earth Science (most Physical Science texts include Earth Science)
Physical Science (This is a short course/introduction for Chemistry and Physics. Some people skip this, but I like the repetition. If a child finds he does not get that last year of physics into his schedule as my daughter did, he still has had an introduction to the subject.)
Chemistry (Algebra I prerequisite)
Physics (Algebra II & basic trigonometry prerequisite)
Informal Logic (can be done in 7th and 8th)
Rhetoric (I’ve not gotten here yet)
Debate (if possible)
Health (In Wisconsin, this is a requirement. I thought there was benefit to the study of the body from a health perspective—physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual.)
Physical Education (Children need exercise. They need to learn how important it is to keep their bodies in shape. They might as well begin now.)
Music: Instrumental and/or Vocal, Theory, Appreciation
Art and Art Appreciation
We do a study of the Bible in personal and family devotions. Some people include it in their class schedule.
There are other classes that can be added to the schedule such as Home Economics, Consumer Math, Woodworking, and Shop. Many of these subjects can be taught outside the classroom--we've done a lot through 4-H. We need to teach our children hands-on knowledge of how to change the oil in the car, how to boil water, and how to sew a button onto a shirt. For the student who has the time, these could be incorporated into their class schedule.
Add to this time to study for the PSAT, SAT, and ACT. The colleges are going to ask what extracurricular activities the child has been doing, so it is good to keep looking for areas of interest the child has and watch for opportunities there, making sure that some of them are community works.
Now tell me: what have I forgotten?
Since Dy asked for a 4th grade list, I went through my computer and found what one of my children did in 5th grade. We ended up repeating a grade because he needed some time to catch up to his grade level--in other words, this was much closer to a 4th grade list. I might have lower class schedules on my old computer; but this is quick and easy for me to copy and paste. I'll post this in case any one can benefit from it. Jean
Davy Crockett: Young Pioneer
Benjamin Franklin (Daugherty)
Log Cabin Home
Vasco da Gama
Pocahontas and Captain John Smith
…If you sailed on the Mayflower
And Then What Happened, Paul Revere?
Sarah Morton’s Day
Samuel Eaton’s Day
Where was Patrick Henry on the 29th of May?
Shh! We’re Writing the Constitution
Sacajawea, Guide to Lewis and Clark
Legend of Sleepy Hallow
Rip Van Winkle
The Matchlock Gun
The Courage of Sarah Noble
Cabin Faced West
…And Now Miguel
Sign of the Beaver
Geo Safari—2nd semester
Maps and Geography
State Capitals video
Hillyer’s A Child’s History of the World
History of US
Grammar & Composition
Rod & Staff English
Rod & Staff Mathematics
How the Universe Works
JVC’s Astronomy for Every Child
Cycles by Jay Ryan
Exploring the Night Sky
Reader’s Digest’s Children’s Atlas of the Universe
Artistic Pursuits 4-6, book 2
Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing
A couple of people have asked me about schedules and classes for homeschooling through high school. I plan to take some time putting a few posts together, and I will classify them under the link "Homeschooling" in the side bar. Hope this is helpful to some of you!
This is my oldest child's high school class list.
English 9 (1. 5 credits each)
World and U.S History: Explorers to 1850
World and U.S. History: 1850 to Present
Geography (.5 credit)
World Views, Philosophy, and Ethics (.5)
Physical Science (with labs)
Biology (with labs)
Chemistry (with labs)
Music: Piano, Theory, Appreciation
Keyboarding (.5 credit)
Art and Art Appreciation (.5)
Driver's Education (.5)
It is quite obvious that Bug has been sticking his nose where it does not belong. There must be some small container on the farm that was worth trying to get his nose into--there is a perfect soot-colored circle on his mussel. I wonder if a mouse was taking refuge inside of it? Betelgeuse (aka Bug) seems oblivious to it all.
The donkey got out of the pasture yesterday. When my son opened the gate to try to herd a steer who had jumped the fence back into the pasture, Penelope took the opportunity to take a walk on the other side of the fence. My son came into the house to let me know that she would not cooperate with him (she never does), so I took a couple of carrots and called her. She ignored me. I walked up through the slimy mud to where she was eating brown grass along the shed, and offered her a carrot. She obliged me, and then allowed me to take her harness and tug on it--didn't move her feet, but she no doubt figured she'd allow me the honor of trying.
I offered her part of the 2nd carrot, and then she took a few steps towards the gate. I tried to urge her a little further, but she said, "In case you haven't noticed, you still have more carrot."
Munch, munch. With almost a human sigh, she turned and ambled slowly into the pasture.
For the love of donkeys!
Have you ever answered the phone and found no one on the other end?
Have you ever answered the downstairs phone while some other family member answered the upstairs phone at the same time?
Have you ever answered the phone, not knowing there was no one on the other end and not knowing that some other family member has answered the upstairs phone at the same time?
"Who are you calling?"
"Bethany?!?!?" (What is she doing calling me? She's home, isn't she? Is she outside on her cell phone?"
"I just answered the phone upstairs."
(Insert enough loud giggles here to make one of my sons playing outside with cousins exclaim, "I have a strange family.")
Go in search of beauty!
At winter solstice, the sun rose just right of the building on the right side of this picture. Next Tuesday is spring Equinox, and you can see how much further south the sun is rising. By June, during the summer solstice, the sun will have moved this much further south once more.
Dy, do you see how much the snow has melted? The spring birds are back. Many have said the robins have returned, but I have not seen them. When I step out on the deck to feed my cats in the morning, the morning air is filled with the loud ruckus of chatter and twitter of those who rejoice at being in their northern home once more. I'll watch for the robins today!