Update: Homeschooling stuff

  •  Homeschooling:  Still having… issues keeping my 14yo focused and not overwhelmed.  What he feels he can do, and what he actually can do are miles apart.  He, without fail, produces well-thought-out, excellent work and I am spending lots of time encouraging him and spurring him on.  I think much of his internal conflict comes down to him longing for the “good old days” when he had less responsibility and his school day wasn’t quite as long — even though his entire day, including “homework” is at a maximum of six hours, and he often has days like yesterday, when he was done in four.  This past week, I had to take away both his iPod and his library books until he was caught up…  I really don’t like restricting his freedoms and pleasures;  I feel like he should be mature enough to self-regulate and that I shouldn’t have to do that.  I guess I still do, though.
  • More homeschooling:  I am sharing my Sonlight Core 3 (American History, Part I — recently renamed Core D) with a friend for her children, and I’m a few weeks ahead of her.  For some reason, I’m really motivated to stay ahead, and for that reason, we’re getting more done, and faster, than ever!  I guess I still have some latent competitiveness…
  • Click on image for a link to the original post by a lady named Linda, who describes planting a Mary garden, where all the plants are symbolic tributes to the Virgin Mary. Linda attributes this painting to Jan van Eyck, and I'm not really sure that's correct. However, notice the strawberries in the raised bed behind the Virgin and Child.

    Still more homeschooling:  We’ve almost wrapped up our (fairly slow) travels through the fabulous DK’s Children’s Book of Art.  I have been pondering where to go next, with art.  Then, after church on Sunday, a friend pulled me over with an almost conspiratorial whisper, “Hey, I’m helping my mom pare down the things in her home.  Are you interested in any books?”  She opened her trunk to reveal a nice, heavy box of assorted books — from a nice hardcover copy of Kipling’s Captains Courageous to a set of Time-Life books on the States, very similar to a set my own mother owns….  Also included was an intriguing book called Signs and Symbols in Christian Art by George Ferguson.  It was first published in 1959;  my hardcover copy appears to have been printed in England in 1967, though I am delighted to discover that the book is still in print!  I may have to get an additional book of color reprints of Renaissance paintings, though…  Most of this book is in black and white.  However, I have long been intrigued with the idea of art as… teacher and entertainer, especially in the days before there was widespread literacy.  Here’s what Ferguson has to say about strawberries:  “The strawberry is the symbol of perfect righteousness, or the emblem of the righteous man whose fruits are good works.  When shown with other fruits and flowers, it represents the good works of the righteous or the fruits of the spirit.  It is in line with this meaning that the Virgin is sometimes shown clad in a dress decorated with clusters of strawberries.  The strawberry is occasionally shown accompanied by violets to suggest that the truly spiritual are always humble.”  My plan is to read a little excerpt like that, then set my boys to hunting for an example.  I’m slow to notice and understand symbolism and allegory, etc., so I’m looking forward to reading this book!

  • Even more homeschooling:  I had also wanted an additional devotional book for my children — especially my 10 and 12-year-old sons.  Right now, we are using Sonlight’s book on American Indian Prayer Guide, as well as using GRN’s monthly prayer guide for its missionaries (we get a monthly newsletter mailed to us, but the link has the same info).  But, I wanted something a little more in-depth, engaging, and focused on character.  Voila!  Out of the same box from my friend’s mom came Courageous Christians:  Devotional Stories for Family Reading by Joyce Vollmer Brown.  PERFECT.  It has sixty stories of well-known and little-known Christians who acted boldly to make a difference for the cause of Christ.  So awesome to have our needs met, in such an unexpected way, and even before I really prayed about it!  I guess God knew these were the books for us…
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About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 10, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I am a natural childbirth advocate and an erstwhile birthing class instructor. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on November 8, 2011, in Art, Books for children, Books I'm Reading, Free stuff, God/Christianity/Church, Homeschooling, Motherhood, Parenting, The Kids. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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