Tuesday, April 28, 2009
The Best Parts of Our Day
For years while we were home educating three children fairly close in age, our home educating days all began the same way. The children would do a few chores after breakfast while I tidied up the kitchen and enjoyed a second cup of tea. Then I would brew a pot of herbal tea and gather them together in our family room. I would read a chapter or two of a book aloud to them while they sipped their tea and stirred in as much sugar as they could.
We followed that every day with our Bible study and then with the other subjects that they worked on together. By the time they were moving into high school level subjects, they might just be sharing the novel and Bible study. Those mornings are some of my best memories of home educating as we read together and talked about books, and enjoyed a peaceful way to learn together.
With only one child involved now in our home education, our routine has shifted, but still I read to her every day, and we begin our actual school work with Bible study every day. I heard a speaker at a conference long ago say that we need to start with the thing we want our children to value most, so Bible study is pre-eminent in our home. Next, we always do math. Even if that's all we achieve some days, I know that the other subjects will get worked in over the course of the week even if they are not done daily.
Our daughter is a strong reader so I often have her read to catch up if we've fallen behind in a subject like science or history. I've learned that every topic we cover in those areas can be returned to later if our first study of it was not deep enough, and that most curriculum retraces its steps quite consistently.
Today we begin a new book: Pilgrim's Progress in an abridged edition (the original is readable for older teenagers, but the message of the book is inspiring for much younger children as well.) We've chosen the book partly because it's referred to over and over in Little Women, which we listened to as an audio book on our trip to Calgary.
I'm off to make some Tea!