Autumn Carnival: Looking Forward, Looking Back

Autumn Leaves by John Everett Millais (1829–1896)

Autumn Leaves by John Everett Millais (1829–1896)

It seems just yesterday that all the trees were glowing with reds, oranges, and yellows, but now “all the leaves are brown, and the skies are gray,” a line that I now cannot get out of my head (click and listen at your own risk). We’ve had an extended autumn it seems, with many beautiful days, and now we’re tucked in until spring. Well, except for the holidays, of course.

This 463rd Carnival of Homeschooling offers a smorgasbord of creative ideas, inspiration, and practical tips. As you read each post, I hope you’ll find kindred spirits among the bloggers, and lots of good things to read as you sit by the fire and sip tea.

Teaching with Charlotte Mason

In A Homeschooling Year with a 9 Year old Girl at Journey and Destination, Carol offers a “description of our year using Ambleside Online Year 3,” with the alterations she made for using it in Australia. I must refer you to another post on this site as well—Handicrafts: Sewing Projects for Beginners speaks to something I believe is critical to wholeness—the ability to work well with ones hands. The article begins with a quote from Charlotte Mason’s Parent’s Review: ‘The child is only truly educated who can use his hands as truly as his head, for to neglect one part of our being injures the whole . . .” Young people who grow up using their hands to make, fix, and do useful things always have the confidence that goes with competence.

 Teaching Shakespeare

Shakespeare can be incredibly fun—or really tedious if not creatively taught. In Teaching Macbeth: Book Covers and Poetry Project at Small World at HomeSarah describes “one of the fun Macbeth projects I did with my high school literature classes at our homeschooling co-op.” By engaging the creative side of the brain, conceiving and executing a project such as this can help students analyze literature. (JC)

Reading Aloud

At Amongst Lovely Things, Sarah suggest that “there is nothing like a good children’s novel, shared out loud” and offers a list of  Favorite First Novels to Read-Aloud with Kids.

 Teaching Math

It’s almost always best to learn a skill from someone who loves it (which is why I teach literature and writing rather than math), and in Roadmap to Mathematics: Kindergarten at Let’s Play Math!, Denise offers some excellent tips and resources to help you teach kindergarten math in an engaging way. She suggests that “Whether you are a radical unschooler or passionately devoted to your textbook — or, like me, somewhere in between — you can help your children toward these grade-level goals by encouraging them to view mathematics as mental play. Don’t think of the standards as a “to do” list, but as your guide to an adventure of exploration.”

Learning About Beauty

A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction (Center for Environmental Structure)

I was delighted to read Patterns, architectural and otherwise, in the Library Project at Like Mother, Like Daughter. I’ve had A Pattern Language: Towns, Buildings, Construction on my Amazon wish list for a few years. Beauty has much to do with proportion, scale, and pattern, and much knowledge of this has been lost in modern times. In order to pass it along to our children, we must learn it, and this book sounds like an ideal introduction to the topic. Thanks to Leila’s review, I’ve bumped it back to the top of my wish list.

To help kids learn about patterns, Dollie offers instructions with photos for a Pattern Learning Box at Teachers of Good Things.

Parent Tips

In 5 Habits to Show Kids Love at Simply Convivial, Mystie offers some very practical ways to keep kids’ tanks full of affection. If a child doesn’t feel loved and valued, it’s going to be very, very hard to teach them anything. so if warmth and affection don’t come naturally (or even if they do), this might be helpful.

At 7 Sisters Homeschool, Sabrina interviews a mom who has homeschooled through a longterm chronic illness. In “When Mom’s Chronic Illness and Homeschooling Have to Work Together Somehow” they explore questions such as “What happens when Mom has a chronic illness?” and “Can homeschool continue and be successful?”
In Homeschooling will not make your family happy on Notes from a Homeschooled Mom, a graduated homeschool mom offers a reality check, saying “If you think that by homeschooling your family life will instantly be all sunshine and roses, you can throw in the towel now.” However, there is hope:  “. . . being the kind of parent that kids want to be around . . . that guides, cajoles, hugs, and supports, will make your homeschooling family happy,”
In Another cool benefit of homeschooling – Take your daughter to work day at Why Homeschool, Henry shares an upcoming adventure he and his daughter are going to have.
In Parents Need to “Deschool” Too: Part One at My Own Mind Karen asks, “Getting frustrated in your homeschool?” and provides a reminder for parents to deschool a bit.

“Thankfulness” just in time for Thanksgiving

Working it Out: Devotional Poetry Analysis with George HerbertSince I may not be posting again before Thanksgiving—must get my classic Cranberry-Orange Relish ready!—I will share once more the post containing my favorite Thanksgiving poem, “Gratefulness” by George Herbert, along with the announcement that Working it Out, the wonderful devotional book that helps you learn to understand poetry while spending a year with George Herbert is now back in print. I’m so glad—I believe it would be a joy for your whole family to study together.

A Poetic Dessert

And finally,here is a video recitation of Percy Bysshe Shelley’s “Ode to the West Wind.” It seems to evoke the mood of the day. I hope you enjoy it!

Thank you for visiting the Carnival of Homeschooling! If you would like to host, please visit the Why Homeschool? blog for details.

2 Responses

  1. Carol says:

    Thanks for hosting the Carnival, Janice & for sharing Herbert’s poem & the link to the Poetry study. A year of George Herbert’s poems – now that sounds marvellous.

  1. November 21, 2014

    […] is the theme of this week’s Carnival of Homeschooling, hosted by Janice […]

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