…of a Homeschool Mom
by Faith Lewis
I’m sharing a bit of our homeschooling morning because it’s been such an interesting study today! After chores were done and breakfast was eaten, we sank into the couch with cocoa and tea to read a bit of Tolkien’s Silmarillon. (We have slowly been reading through the Hobbit and The LOTR for about two years now – interwoven with the Little House series and a few others.) I think we all agree that Silmarillion may be the best Tolkien work ever. Wow!
Because we were already snuggled on the couch, I decided to continue the day with our history reading from The Story of Us by Joy Hakim: “Cool Calvin Coolidge” – bobbed hair and swimsuits that show legs!
Women were actually thrown in jail if their swimsuits showed too much leg!
We chuckled our way through “Steam Boat Willie,” the first animated sound film, and watched a video on, “How to Dance the Charleston.” Gideon covered his eyes while I danced, and he plugged his ears while we listened to Duke Ellington’s Jazz. Then we remembered the Langston Hughes poem “Dreams” that we had memorized earlier this year and read another of his works about America. We also read about 14-year-old Philo Farnsworth. Do you know this inventor and his invention? It came to him as he plowed the potato field back and forth.
Usually I have the boys do an oral narration from our history where they tell back to me what they have learned. I write it down, and then they copy it. This amazing tool from Charlotte Mason Education helps build so many aspects of language development, thinking and reasoning skills among them.
We will finish our day with grammar lessons and studied dictation (another Charlotte Mason tool for spelling). Their dad will do math with them at some point, and Noah is literally begging to do a marine biology lesson from Aurora Lipper’s online science curriculum.
Can you tell that homeschooling is not school at home?
I’m sharing because some folks thrown into public-school-at-home this past spring are now considering home education. I’m sharing because there may be folks who are in need of an alternative to public (or private) education due to family illness and concern over the virus. I’m sharing because for us, homeschooling has been the most challenging, yet grandest adventure – and the most valuable aspect of raising our children and building amazing relationships with them.
I would love to be a source of encouragement for anyone considering homeschooling. You have already been educating your children since the day they were born: whether passively or actively! The above is a glimpse into our elementary level studies.
My high schoolers’ day looked a bit different. They are self-learners. They like to learn. They know that learning is key to their future success and the fulfillment of any dreams they may have. I do not coax them or threaten them to get them to do their work. It’s pretty amazing really! I am so proud of the diligence, hard work and effort that my current high schoolers demonstrate. They truly make my job easier!
My younger two, like Gideon not wanting to listen to Duke Ellington today, can sometimes require a bit more persuasion. But not very often. Last night at bedtime, Gideon had his dad write down a word problem so that he could work on that before going to sleep! Ahh, those are the moments.
I am, I can, I ought, I will,
is one of my favorite Charlotte Mason quotes. And “You must” is probably one of the things I most often say. Some things we MUST do. Better to learn that early. Today, Gideon had to listen to jazz, and he survived.
Faith, who served with her husband Jason on the CHEWV board for a short while, is now doing some covert work with CHEWV. She is heading a creative development team that will be making some changes to one of our ministries within the year. There are some exciting things afoot…