My Homeschool Building Blocks

This week is the beginning of the public school year in our area. So I decided that this week would also be the beginning of our school year at home

well trained mind

This is the backbone of what we do. I love Susan Wise  Bauer and Jessie Wise. They are a mother and daughter team who speak from experience. Jessie taught her children at home after being told “how dare you teach your children to read before they come to school”. I mean, can you believe the nerve of a parent actually teaching her child to read because she was ready to read before school?!

Susan and Jessie describe a classical education solely at home or supplementing what the child is learning at school. It is the way I wish I had been taught.

Which brings me to my next reccomendation:

well educated mind

This is also written by Susan Wise Bauer. It is a guide to giving yourself the classical education that you wish you had received in school.  In leads you gently through history, the ultimate story, by guiding you through the evolution of the written word that forever shapes the world we live in.

It also instructs on how to critically examine what you have read and how to express your thoughts and ideas into the written word.

Speaking of learning to write and homeschooling, this is another resource that we have been using this year:

complete writerfirst language lessons

“Writing with Ease” is written by Jessie Wise. It is written for parent of the beginning elementary student and guides you through teaching your student to learn the foundations needed for good scholarly writing needed for high school and college.

“First Language Lessons” is written by her daughter Susan Wise Bauer and is exactly what the name implies. It guides the parent of the first and second grade student through scripted grammar and narration exercises designed to gradually strengthen the students mental language abilities and introduce basic grammar.

Along with these wonderful resources we are also using:

story of the world Ancient times

“Story of the World:Ancient Times” is the first in a series of four books designed to introduce the early learner to the great story of History. It is also written by Susan Wise Bauer. There is a workbook that we use that has activites designed to reinforce the story in book. There are coloring pages, activity ideas, map pages,and more for each chapter in the accompanying text.

You can probably tell already just how much I like these two women! I do use other books and sources to teach, but I find myself referring to these books over and over. I just haven’t found any that are better or easier to use.

This is just a little taste of where we are starting this year. My high schooler is studying Chemistry, Trigenometry, Constitutional Law, United States History, Classic Literature, Driver’s Ed (OMG!! ), and a Home Economics Course. We will meet at our Co-op for the lab portion of some of these courses with the bulk of the learning taking place at home. She does have texts to follow, but we also use our library and the internet to supplement and expand upon what we are learning. 

And I do mean we. One of my favorite parts about homeschooling is learning new things alongside my children. Even though I am a well-educated college graduate, I learn something new everyday. I would hate to imagine a world where there was nothing left to learn. How boring would that be?!!

So go, read a good book already. Don’t forget to let me know what it is.

Y’all Come Back Now.

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August 11, 2009. Homeschooling.

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