Topic | Sonya…Living Books Curriculum & Education is…

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  • Hi Sonya,

    I wanted to tell you that I greatly appreciate you help. I have downloaded the book “Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life” and have started reading it..it is WONDERFUL! I am struggling so much right now w/ character issues w/ my children and having six w/ one due soon..well..it is a bit overwhelming. Taking “one habit at a time” is something I needed to read.

    I think your website is amazing!

    You had mentioned that you thought maybe Living Books Curriculum would be a good place to start for me. I noticed that they do American and World History, is the a CM concept, would this be confusing.

    I really do think, for me right now, I need a teachers guide, something that can guide me along while I gain more information about CM, her methods, what will work for me, what won’t. I don’t feel like I have the CM personality! I am also very physically uncomfortable right now, I am having a lot of back pain in this pregnancy so…well..I am pretty grumpy right now.

    Just wanted to say thank you and ask again about Living Books Curriculum.

    Oh..I also wanted to ask..should I just not worry about a “curriculum” for my 7th and 8th graders and start w/ Spelling Wisdom and look at the curriculum guide for Living book suggestions. I would like to do geography work w/ them also and history.

    Thanks so much,

    Kim

    Wife to Clayton for 17 years, mother to: dd13 (almost 14), dd12, ds10, dd7, dd4, ds2 and baby Josiah due in Feb.

    Karen Smith
    Moderator

    Hi Kim,

    Sonya and her family are busy taking care of some unexpected family things so the rest of us are filling in as best as we can for awhile.

    I wanted to tell you that I greatly appreciate you help. I have downloaded the book “Education is an atmosphere, a discipline, a life” and have started reading it..it is WONDERFUL! I am struggling so much right now w/ character issues w/ my children and having six w/ one due soon..well..it is a bit overwhelming. Taking “one habit at a time” is something I needed to read.

    I’m glad that the Education Is book has been an encouragement to you. I don’t want to sound like a commercial, but if you can afford it the Laying Down the Rails book is excellent for helping you work on those character issues you are having problems with right now. Dealing with the character issues will help make your days go smoother, both in and out of school.

    should I just not worry about a “curriculum” for my 7th and 8th graders and start w/ Spelling Wisdom and look at the curriculum guide for Living book suggestions. I would like to do geography work w/ them also and history.

    I don’t know what kind of records you have to keep for your state, but if you don’t have to meet state requirements, I would not worry about a curriculum for the older kids for the time being. Definitely start with the curriculum guide and choose some living books to enjoy together. You can choose some living books covering history and some covering literature. Starting Spelling Wisdom and geography work would also be great, if you are feeling up to it. I would hold off doing too much until after the baby is born. That way you will be able to think more clearly about what will work best for your family.

    I don’t know much about the Living Books Curriculum that Sonya told you would be a good place for you to start so I can’t answer that part of your message. If anyone else has experience with this curriculum and can give Kim some information, please jump in.

    Anyone else have any ideas or suggestions for Kim?

    Kim,

    I would lighten up as much as possible. You are in the home stretch for this pregnancy, and sounds like Karen’s advice is good! I second the “Laying Down the Rails” encouragement! It is a goldmine!

    Years ago when I was in some overwhelmed times, character issues, etc. (okay, so that happens more than just years ago! πŸ˜‰ ) I came across advice to take each child’s *one* area they needed to work on the most. For example, with dd that’s almost 14, she might be doing well on her own right now. Just address the main need–if you think it’s using Spelling Wisdom, then that is THE main focus for them (and harness the energy–have your older dd help the younger!) These of course are just examples! I don’t know what your dc’s needs are!

    Going on…ds that’s 10. Maybe he really needs to work on his handwriting! So you would either have him work through his book (if you have one for him) or copywork. And dd that’s 7, perhaps she needs some reading comprehension help or just reading itself. Living books to the rescue! Narration!

    If even that is daunting, then just pick one area for everyone to work on–math or language arts. Now, when I say just that area, there were times I did require some from other areas, but my focus, my one thing I made sure was done, was the one I picked.

    This is not forever. If you have character issues, you must get that addressed first (I’m in the same boat with a few of my younger children–trying to shore up the boundaries a bit!).

    I replied on your other post about TOG to go to “Making the Transition”–maybe Sonya has already pointed you in that direction.

    I would start with what she puts there–the short lessons, narration and living books. I am making Bible time one of those priorities, then my plan is to implement picture study, music study, etc. 1 at a time each over a few weeks’ time (meaning taking 2-3 weeks to implement each one, not all in 3 weeks!). But at your stage with the pregnancy, I would just focus on the easiest for you and the most interesting way for them to do the basics, and just read. Read history books together, or have them read them and tell you what they’re about. All Through the Ages is a good resource for books for each time period in history. I’m sure there are others–perhaps even in the bookfinder here! I’ve not fully explored that part yet! Just read about history, look up places on the map/globe. You can add more in later after baby-dear has arrived! I have even assigned a project that they didn’t really need me as much and let them run with it–for example, one year I wanted them to get familiar with the road map, so I had them pick a state and write a “report” however they liked telling me the capital, how many state parks, average county size and city size all from what they learned just from the Rand McNally map. Then I asked them to create a “brochure” telling us a point of interest to visit, map the route to take from our house complete with where to stop on the way and 2-3 other points of interest to see along the way! Oh, and how long they thought it would take! They loved it and took off with it and learned so much! Just don’t make it be so polished they lose their love of learning over it! (Too much a temptation for me!)

    I realize you may need to focus on a bit more due to your state’s laws, but try to be creative and at least for the next 6 weeks or so just do the minimal you can so you can focus on character and getting a few things in place. Also, as always, run it all by dh!!!!

    I so understand crisis mode, and I am NOT a veteran CMer, so I am giving you advice that *I* would do in your shoes (and have been there for different seasons and reasons!). I am incorporating more into my life now as well and am excited about it!

    Sorry to write a book here! Hope something is helpful!

    Trisch

    HI Trisch,

    Thank you so much for responding to all my posts! I really appreciate it. I love all of your ideas. One of my problems, notice I say ONE..ha, is I am not good in grammar, geography, etc… So…correcting their papers would be difficult for me. I am going to have them do Analytical Grammar. There is so much I would LOVE to learn w/ them! I realize how very little I paid attention in HS AND..I just was not taught this way, was not encouraged to be creative etc…

    Part of why I want a TE Guide is because I really believe it would help me NOT to feel overwhelmed, in the beginning of trying to implement CM ideas. Now..obviously we can read aloud and I can have them “tell back” to me so..I can start there.

    I really want my older girls to do geography but I wouldn’t really know how to “teach” it or help them w/ questions etc..

    My brain doesn’t seem to work this way yet..as far as looking at all the options and just picking something small and starting. I see “all the options”, get overwhelmed with where to start, and just go stagnant. I am reading Catherine Levison’s books on CM. I printed out Education Is… from this sight. See..this is what I do, I obviously have a lot of habits I need to change also. I get all these books to read, get overwhelmed and end up not reading any. Or, I try to take notes on what I am reading, end up writing down every sentence because it all sounds good, and then I don’t want to read it anymore..seriously! I realized yesterday in thinking about how I let the girls, 12 and 13, just read. I had a friend a few years ago tell me not disect a book, just let them read, well…I realize I disect everything, try to take notes, feel like if I don’t I will miss something and end up not wanting to finish it.

    Okay…I have shared too much about myself..ha! So…I really think, for now, a curriculum of some sort, even if it is just a guide and I only do the reading aloud, for instance, would help me to keep my mind from spinning.

    Maybe I am just being stubborn? Hmmm….more poor husband. I think if I bring up one more curriculum, we had discussed Tapestry of Grace and decided to go w/ it, he is going to…well…he is really good about listening but I think I lose him, I have had sooo many I have talked to him about. I knew, before I got TOG, that it probably wouldn’t work. I had a friend that used it, she is MUCH more organized than I am, and she said it was their worst year, her kids hated it. Anyway….maybe, for now, I can just get the LBC Guide to just look through and see.

    You all have been so kind and PATIENT. I am not easy…I seem to have to try everything that doesn’t work first.

    Thank you very, very much for your replies!!!!

    Kim

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