8.29.2009

A great first week

We had a really wonderful first week back at school, better than my expectations--all thanks to the Lord!  We're both really happy with our new schedule, liking our studies, and I think overall, really grateful for the balance the Lord has brought to our homeschooling life.  It's something I've been working at for a couple of years.  I know we'll have our ups and downs in the course of the year, but with a strong start, I'm encouraged and hopeful that we're on the Lord's track.


This year, Sweet Pea's 8th grade year, we're doing Sonlight's Core 7, the second half of a two-year world history adventure picking up at the late Renaissance.  The King's Fifth by Scott O'Dell is a captivating adventure that takes place in northern Mexico during Coronado's explorations (quite a look at the devastation the Spaniards' "gold fever" caused to the indigenous peoples).  And our read-aloud, A Murder for Her Majesty is giving us a very authentic look at the world of musicians and the cathedral at York during Queen Elizabeth's time.  Fascinating.  If you read the book, be sure to do a Google on photos of the cathedral--there's some excellent collections that really give you a perspective on what happens in the book.  Amazing building.


We're also doing Teaching Textbooks Pre-Algebra for math this year, Apologia General Science, Easy Grammar 9 for a light review, and a big-time emphasis on writing.  We'll be working through exercises in Jensen's Format Writing as well as the fun fiction workshop, Reach for the Stars, sold as an e-book through HSB.  And SweetPea will be doing the public speaking class again in our support group, and piano.


So we have a full plate, but a rich one.  And as I've said a hundred times, I'm so glad I'm getting to do my education all over again!  Satisfies me to my toes.


Now I need to tend to my "day off" to tend to everything else!  The weather is beautiful so I'd better include some sunshine and physical effort outside.

8.24.2009

Back to school!

We had a wonderful first day back at our homeschool today, thanks be to the Lord.  While we were both sad to have summer 'officially' ended, we both said it was good to be on a schedule and in a routine again.  And who can deny the thrill that comes with a new set of books and the prospect of new learning spread before you like a feast?


This school year brings us some changes as well, chief among them being SweetPea's desire for more independent learning.  So we're trying out a new schedule...and after one day, we like it!  We're up early and doing our 'together' work in the morning, then the rest of the day she's on her own.  Since we do Sonlight, I used the Instructor Guide page to add all the other studies--science, math, and out-and-about stuff for the week, made a copy for her, and she can govern her time to get it all done as she chooses.  She was a happy camper today, and I'm praising the Lord!


One of my summer goals was to look at our weekly schedule to see what we could trim or simplify and I was able to make some good changes.  So I'm hoping that this will be a more focused year on our academics.  I'm wanting her to really polish her writing skills this year, particularly essay writing in preparation for high school.  And I'm woefully behind in training her in various homemaking skills--sewing, bread-baking, etc., so maybe, just maybe, this will be the year!!


The Lord reminded me this morning of His wonderful help as we face a new school year:  "Commit thy way unto the Lord; trust also in him, and he shall bring it to pass."  Hallelujah! 


Be it unto to me--and all of us--according to His Word!