What’s your advice for a first time homeschooling mom?

I am working on a small resource to give for free to those who sign up on my site.

I want to make it a quick, practical read specifically for those who are starting on their first year of homeschooling, and I’d like to include ideas from a variety of homeschool moms. I might call it: “From the Trenches: A Guide to Surviving your First Year of Homeschooling.”

I’d love to include your thoughts!

Pretend a mom was sitting in front of you asking what she needed to know for that first year. What would you tell her?

I will probably start compiling these this weekend, so if you have time to reply before Friday that would be wonderful. Just comment below.

The topic areas I’m thinking of are:

  • Support System: Find those who will cheer for your success
  • Character: Your kids have to listen to you before “school” will work
  • Academics: Start with the basics
  • Simplify: Cut out as much as possible to make life easier
  • One Thousand Gifts: Focus on the daily joys
  • Recharge: Plan breaks for yourself
  • Focus on your Goals: Remind yourself often why you are doing this (I’ll put in a printable sheet for them to write down their top 3 reasons and 3 encouraging verses)

Feel free to write whatever you want, because I may shift those categories around a bit.

Would you also include your name (first + last initial, or simply initials if you’d rather), and how long you’ve been homeschooling?

I’ll probably write it like this: “Be sure to….. “ – Susie C., homeschooling for 4 years

Thank you so much for any advice or wisdom you can share!

Rhythm of a Year: Fall

Fall =  Slow and Routine

I thought it might be interesting to those starting out to see what the rhythm of a homeschooling year looks like in our family. And even if you have been homeschooling a while, it might be interesting. I always enjoy seeing what other families’ routines  are like.

During the fall (end of August, Sept, Oct, early Nov) we are trying to get into a routine that works for this season.

What we do:

  • Try to stay on our schedule
  • Get used to going to bed/getting up consistent times (Mom included)
  • Work on training in chores
  • Play outside at home after school is done
  • Try to get a good start on schoolwork for year, stay up with lesson plans.

What we don’t do:

  • Go to the library almost at all (because the new books throw off my plans)
  • Go on any unplanned field trips
  • Any other projects other than school or basics.
    No home improvement. No organizing extravaganzas. No trips to Washington D.C. (My husband actually went last week, and I thought about taking the kids, but travel like that takes a huge amount of time and energy and I just wasn’t up for it.)
  • I don’t go to the YMCA much during this time.

So far this fall, school is eating my lunch. I find it is taking a lot more time this year. The Classical Conversations class (Essentials) means more writing homework for my son, and my son and daughter both have a tiny bit of co-op homework now. Even my three-year-old is in Awana Cubbies now, so he has his little verse to memorize–very cute, but one more thing to squeeze in.

I’m yearning to slow life down. It’s been too busy for too long. I’ve said no to some writing opportunities. I won’t be an exciting blogger with a big readership, because it requires too much time at the computer. I’m okay with that.

I want slower, calmer days at home this year: doing laundry, learning together with my children, reading together under the tree in the backyard.

How about you? What does your fall look like? Are you trying to slow down?

10 Real Life Tips for Reading Chapter Books – Part 2

Lucy saving Edmund's life with her magical cordial

I’m doing this two-part series to go along with my Chapter Book Challenge. Won’t you join us?
In Part One, I shared my 5 real-life tips for reading chapter books. Here are the other five:
NOTE: Before I start opining about the wonders of reading aloud to your children, I just have to tell you that Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader is killing me.
I tried to read a little tonight and things did not go well. Maybe it was the “Swedish pancakes” (rolled pancakes with sugar inside) the kids had for dinner; maybe they devoured secret hoards of espresso beans.  All I know is—they were bouncing all over the  place for the 20 minutes I read to them. I think we covered three pages.

And I skipped over long paragraphs of boringness.

I’m sure all the quirky jokes C.S. Lewis makes were amusing to kids at the time, or to adults now, but I’ve had to stop to explain nautical terms, what the British Consulate is, what “cheeky” and “chirruping” mean, and try to guess what “lodge a disposition” means. I would totally ditch the book if the kids hadn’t already seen the movie and decided it’s the best thing EVER. So we must soldier on. But I’m telling you, I’m going to
cut out a lot.

And I DO NOT recommend the later Narnia books (Any after 1 and 2) for kids under 10 or so. Feel free to disagree with me; I’m stickin’ with that. I’m changing our reading list to save the last two books for a few years from now.

Anyway, on to some real life reading tips, because I could use some…


6. Answer vocabulary quickly and move on.
Most classic chapter books are going to have more ”rare words” and complex vocabulary; that’s part of their value.  Usually I don’t stop to explain words unless my kids ask.  “What does swift mean?” I’ll say, “Fast,” and read the sentence again with “fast” substituted. Many times they’ll figure it out because of context.

(But again, this is why picking a book at their level is important, because The Voyage of the Dawn Treader has so MUCH hard or British vocabulary that it’s exhuasting.)

7. Simplify (or summarize) difficult passages while reading if needed.
Ideally, complexity of sentences is a good thing. It teaches kids to listen and understand nuances. But when we get bogged down (like tonight), I adjust.

a.  Make complex sentences simple. Some of the Voyage of the Dawn Treader sentences are ten lines long! I make the sentences shorter and simpler when I can.

b. Cut out long, complicated descriptions. Tonight I skipped over a few lengthy paragraphs on the boat layout. The kids don’t need to know that to follow the action. If they are losing interest, I skim forward to the next dialogue or action scene.

8. Make fun voices.  I try to use creepy voices for the scary parts, or deep voices for kings or whatever. When I remember.

Audio books are great for this, if your kids can follow the plot. We LOVED the audio of the Little House books.

(The Narnia books are way too complicated for us to listen to the audio books so we’re reading those.)


9. Encourage Imaginary Play. 
We don’t act out the books in a formal way, but I might just plant the seed of an idea in their heads.  We had friends over when we were reading The Long Winter and the kids were playing outside. I said, “Oooh, I think a storm is coming. You better get your hay in the barn and cattle inside!” After looking at me like I was nuts, the other children caught on quickly and they spent the next hour or so getting in crops.

When that friend came over months later, the first thing she wanted to do was get her crops into the barn!

This lets the kids learn about the situations, time, vocabulary, as well as helping them connect emotionally with the story and turn the characters into friends.

My kids often do this spontaneously and I just play along. If my daughter says she’s Lucy and her brother is Edmund, who am I to argue? (The picture at the top is my daughter pretending to be Lucy and nurse “Edmund” back to life. This is an almost daily occurance.)

10. Answer their questions. Sometimes I ask them questions later, but more often they learn by asking questions. Lots and lots of questions.

I realized one day that if I did nothing else but answer all my children’s questions they’d get a very in-depth and well-rounded education. I try, as much as possible, to answer their questions with thoughtful, honest answers. (When it doesn’t suck the life out of me with the volume of the questions. Tonight, I kid you not, I think my son asked about twenty questions ON ONE PAGE. And I just don’t know that much about the British Consulate or boatswains.)

The question is the teachable moment. That’s the real lesson, not whatever’s on the page.

“Yes, but what I don’t understand,” my daughter said the other day in the middle of Prince Caspian, “is how God was there before anything. How could he be?”

We talked about it. Instead of being annoyed that we spent 10 minutes off topic, I thought, wow, this really is wonderful literature. It’s getting them thinking about the important things.

So, let’s do it together, shall we? Let’s just pick an interesting book and start. It may be slow going. It may take ten times longer than we thought it would, and involve more discussions of British slang than we ever thought possible, but let’s do it anyway. Let’s read these rich books to our children.

As these courageous, noble, strong characters come alive to our children, may they awaken something in their hearts. And in ours as well.

Our Favorite Chapter Books So Far
The comments to Part One and the Chapter Book Challenge had lots of great book ideas and reading tips. Be sure to check those out if you haven’t. Thank you all for wonderful ideas! (Did anyone else have the same trouble with Narnia or is it just me?)

Ages 5 and up

  • Little House Books
  • Pippi Longstocking (Kids loved it; she can be disrespectful to adults so we discussed that.)
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
  • Charlotte’s Web
  • The Hundred Dresses
  • Pinnochio
  • (One of my son’s favorites was Danger at Quicksand Swamp. Not a classic, not particularly well-written, but a great boy adventure story!)

Ages 8 and up

  • Narnia books #1 and #2 (all others I’d say wait until they are at least age 10)
  • The Whipping Boy
  • Historical: Pilgrim Boy, Squanto, Childhood of Famous Americans (we did George Washington and Einstein), Sign of the Beaver

These are my two favorite books about reading aloud, and they have great book lists in them. Honey for a Child’s Heart by Gladys Hunt, and The Read-Aloud Handbook by Jim Trelease. Your library might have both.

Also, Ambleside online and the Sonlight website are great resources.
What did I leave off? What are your favorites for ages 5-10?

Also, a note: a big thank you to Carey Jane Clark, author of After the Snow Falls, for her kind review of The Homeschool Experiment: a novel last weekend:

“When it comes to novels, I want to be awed by the way the author puts words together, and I was not disappointed. But perhaps the most disarming thing about this book is the main character, Julianne Miller, and her very real life. Any mother who’s ever compared herself to others (and what mother hasn’t?) will relate to this down-to-earth character.”  Read Carey’s whole review on her blog >


10 Real Life Tips for Reading Chapter Books – Part 1

I’m doing this two-part series to go along with the Chapter Book Challenge. Come join us!

We all know we’re supposed to be reading volumes of great literature (“Living Books”) to our kids. It increases their vocabularies, improves attention spans, blah blah blah.

So why don’t I read as much as I would like?

Because it’s hard.

My kids fight over where to sit. They interrupt with a million questions. They whine and want to watch TV instead. Last year, my toddler invented an exhilarating game of trying to fling himself backwards off the couch during story time. Not exactly an ideal focusing environment.

When I read by myself, I can knock out a book in a few hours. When I read to my kids, I might as well settle down and get comfortable with the characters because I know we’ll be there a while. Like a month.

But that’s okay. It’s still worth doing.

Here are some real-life tips I’ve found for making reading chapter books less painful (and now, many days, actually enjoyable!) at our house.

(Picture books are wonderful too, but in this post, I’m focusing on chapter books, with only a few pictures and mostly text on a page. )


1. Read when the toddler is asleep or with the other parent. I’ve given up on trying to read chapter books with my 3-year-old in the room. He’s adorable, but a complete distraction. So I try to read to my six- and eight-year-old for 20-30 minutes during Tea Time when he’s napping. I also try read at bedtime for 20 minutes or so while Dad reads to The Great Distractor on the couch in the living room (or vice versa).

(I’ve heard rumors that there are toddlers who behave nicely and can actually be in the same room when you’re reading a chapter book. If this happens at your house, consider yourself in the 1%.  I’m very happy for you and only the tiniest bit jealous. Don’t mind me–carry on!)

2. Expect it to go slowly and be frustrating.

When I expect to get through a whole chapter, I get annoyed at interruptions. But if I resign myself to the fact that we’ll probably only get through a couple pages, I’m much more pleasant. We often only get through 2-4 pages in 20 minutes.

I answer questions as we go.  (If they ask totally unrelated questions, I’ll ask them to wait until we’re done.)

It takes us about a month to get through a chapter book.

That’s a long time, but it also allows the children to really get into the story, to get to know the characters, to dream themselves into that world. Some people might read more, but that’s okay. This is what we can do. I figure it’s better than nothing.

 3. Bribe them with food. My kids like Tea Time (i.e. Reading Time) so much better now that I give them warm milk and a snack. Our standard snacks are apples and peanut butter, Baked Lays, pretzels, or crackers and cheese.

4. Pick a book you actually want to read. I’m much more likely to announce, “Tea Time!” when I care about the book.  If I hate the book and have to drag myself to
read it, it’s just agony for all. And we don’t really need any more of that.


5. Make sure the kids understand what’s going on. I’ll often stop and ask, “Do you know what’s happening?” I let them ask endless questions about plot, character, time period, etc. If they need to do that to get it straight in their minds, I let them.

I’ll finish the other 5 tips in Part 2, and also list some of the chapter books we’ve loved.
Any tips to share for reading Chapter Books? I’d love to hear them!

Want to join in on our Chapter Book Challenge? (I also list out the chapter books I’m hoping to read with them this year.) Let’s help each other out with this! 

{ rest }

Once a month or so, I want to simply share a beautiful picture and words of truth. It is a reminder to all of us to take time and space in this frantic world to take a breath,
drink deeply of God’s goodness, and just rest. It’s okay.

Let your gentleness be evident to all; the Lord is near. – Phil 4:5

One of those days

This afternoon was a bit of a disaster. I let my 3-year-old talk me into NOT wearing a pull-up to co-op (and it will be the last time that happens until at least Christmas). He had been doing so much better this week!

His first accident was in the morning, so I changed him into his backup outfit. He had his second accident at Classical Conversations after lunch, and I didn’t have a 3rd outfit so I had to run him home. It was quite impressive: as I buckled him into his seat, yellow poop squished all over me, his shorts, and his car seat.

Went home; gave him a bath; changed clothes. Put pile of poop clothes in the backyard to be dealt with later. Our washing machine has been broken since Monday when it started billowing out acrid gray smoke. (You didn’t know washing machines could do that? Me either.)

We went back to the garage where I noticed a suspicious puddle, checked it out, and confirmed that the hot water heater was indeed leaking, so I’ll have to call about that on Monday.

We drove back to CC in our reeking car, and when we arrived I realized we were locked out. My cell phone was inside the building.

My great consolation in moments like these: this would be a fabulous disaster scene if I ever write another book.

Chapter Book Challenge!

One of my main goals this year is to sit on the couch and read to my kids. (I kinda dropped the ball last year.)  I thought this might be a way to both hold myself accountable and to share what books we love as we go.

Do you want to join us? Here’s my idea: I will post our year’s chapter reading goals. I’ll update it about once a quarter, letting you know if we did it and what we thought of the books. Sort of a mini book review.

And you link up, okay? You could do it two ways:

  1. If you have a blog – comment with a link to your blog post where you do the same
  2. If you don’t – comment with the books you want to read for the year, or what you’ve been reading and what you thought. A mini book review.

We’ll just try it and see how it goes. I know there may only be a few who join in, but I figure we can at least learn from each other and share what books our kids like.

Your goal may be to read one chapter book this year, or twelve, or twenty-seven. Whatever. But sometimes it helps me to write these things down and share them with friends as a way of encouraging each other.

Join in, won’t you?

My Chapter Book Goals for 2012-2113
(These are for my 8 year-old son and 6 year-old daughter. My 3 year-old gets mostly picture books. )

August Narnia: Prince Caspian
Sept Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader
Oct The Little Princess, Burnett
Nov Mary Poppins (1-3 books)
Dec Peter Pan
Jan Paddington Bear (1-2 books)
Feb Ben Hur (picture version)
Mar The Bronze Bow
Apr In Grandma’s Attic
May Narnia: The Silver Chair
June Narnia: The Last Battle

Extras, if done early:

Mrs. Piggle Wiggle
The Story of Doctor Dolittle
Anne of Green Gables
James Herriot’s Animal book
The Door in the Wall

What about you? What chapter books do you hope to read with your children this year?

(I plan to do a two-part series on Real Life Tips for Reading Chapter Books later this week. Because this getting kids to sit still and listen isn’t fabulously easy, is it? But let’s do it anyway.)

Working Nature Study Into Your Homeschool Routine

I had planned every other Thursday to be our Nature Day where we go somewhere wild, play outdoors, and try to spy a new bird for the kids’
bird books.

Yesterday arrived, however, and I really didn’t feel like going on a road trip. I had to get ready for my son’s 3rd birthday and the first day of co-op, and the whole thing just sounded like a lot of work. Good thing I had planned to do this with a friend. She was up for it, so I hated to wimp out on her.

Especially since it was my idea in the first place.

We decided to go.
It looks like we’re packing for a trip on the Oregon Trail, doesn’t it? Nope, just a morning at the beach.

In hindsight, I needn’t have bothered with the potty. Next time, just the essentials: swimsuits, towels, sunscreen, beach buckets (forgot
those), nature backpack with bird book, lunch/snacks, wipes. Still a lot of essentials.

Now, this whole trip was fun for me since I got to sit on the sand and hang out with my friend while the kids more or less played cheerfully.

But the best part is, it totally counts as a full day of school. Here are some ways we worked learning in:

1. Creative/Imaginative Play (Logic/Spatial Reasoning)  – The three big kids (my two plus their friend) built a castle and intricate moat system. The two boys had a heated discussion over whether the moat should be connected to the water (so boats could come in) or not (so the water didn’t go out), but eventually decided, at my suggestion, that the imaginary boats could go up on wheels to get over the land, then back down when they arrived at the moats. This was amenable to all.

This is why Apple and Google executives spend big bucks to send their kids to private schools that emphasize free and creative play. We want to raise the kids who will ask the right questions, right? We want children who know how to come up with
the ideas, not just know how to use technology.  We want world-changers.

And a great place to start is with sandcastles and moats.

2.  Literature – On the hour-long drive there and back we listened to Sigourney Weaver’s reading of Hans Christian Andersen’s The Snow Queen. It gave me goose bumps. I was worried it would be too creepy for the kids, but they sat spellbound. (Well, my toddler didn’t really care for it, but that’s to be expected.)

Anyway, I want to get more Hans Christian Andersen stories on CD if the library has them. Captivating.  (And I just want you to know, I wasn’t organized enough to check it out in preparation for our trip. I happened upon an overdue CD I’d forgotten about, so hooray for us!)

3. Science – While at the beach, I alerted the kids to the birds I saw and looked them up in our Birds of Oklahoma book. (I like this book because the birds are organized by color, which is all I know about a bird when I spot it.) Eventually I want the kids to do this, but for now, I have to be the bird enthusiast.

We saw a Great Egret, possibly a Blue Heron, and some kind of hawk, but I couldn’t tell which kind. Also the kids found a mussel in the lake and lumps of clay buried in the sand, so we talked about those a bit.


4. Some more free play. If someone insisted, it could be called “socializing” – the kids played on the jungle gym to dry off. (I was hoping they might knock some
sand off them and track less into the car, but this did not seem to have happened.)

Our friend’s dad had been showing him pictures of the landing on Mars, so the kids pretended they were landing on Mars for a good thirty minutes.

They were quite intense. My favorite quote:

“Look it’s a baby!”

“But human babies on Mars are actually giant spiders!”

So in case you ever make it to Mars, beware of huge spider babies.

5. Writing/Art/Science – I was actually going to skip having the kids do a page for their Bird Book, but then I remembered we were supposed to do some reading for co-op the next day. It was the first five pages in the Apologia Flying Creatures book, and it talked about how animals are given Latin names. (Our CC memory work is already paying off because the book talks about Kingdom, Phylum, etc.)

I decided we should go ahead and do a Bird Page, so that we could practice writing the English name and the Latin name.  (Excuse the dinner debris in the photo. Also, excuse the sharp knives flung haphazardly about.)

I just got out regular white sheets of printer paper and asked the kids to write the English name, Latin name, date and location (I helped with spelling), and then copy the picture from the book.

Here is my daughter’s.  She named the bird “Yelo Bec” (Yellow Beak).

I punched holes in them and plan to put them in one of those folders with brads. That will be our Bird Book. I’d love it if the kids to have 15-20 birds in there by the end of the year.

We might possibly collect insects (deceased ones) for a bug board, but I’m not sure if I want to open that can of worms yet. Do I really want to invite
dead insects into the house?  I don’t
know that I do.

Let us not forget what happened to Sukey (may she rest in peace).


So that was our first Nature Day of this school year. Getting everything packed up was a bit of a pain, and taking baths afterward and washing out the sandy towels was a bit of a pain, but it was worth it.The sand was actually good for my son, who has some sensory issues, and gets irritated by textures easily. Playing in the sand is a great sensory exercise.

So even though it feels like a “day off,” it’s really a day full of learning, exploring, and adventure.

How do you make time for nature study or outdoor time in your school?

Back to School Giveaway

Be sure and enter the $20 Target card + signed copy of the book giveaway on Facebook!




I’m so encouraged by reading everyone’s comments. Thank you! And also, I love reading what other people eat for breakfast. It makes me feel more normal.

So, you know how I said I wasn’t going to get stressed? How I’d be the picture of calm? Well, I just returned from my co-op meeting and my head is spinning with emails to send, forms to collect, Spanish books to order, and backpacks to organize. But I’m not allowed to be stressed, so I had to sing to myself on the way home, “Que Sera Sera, whatever will be will be, the future’s not ours to see, Que Sera Sera.”

Which didn’t help all that much.

So now I’m repeating to myself my “His yoke is easy and His burden is light.” This actually does help because it reminds me that this is all Little Stuff. It’s really not that big of a deal in the grand scheme of things. I don’t remember Jesus saying my kids have to learn Spanish.

I’ll do my best and send some emails and order some things off Amazon, and organize the best I can, but I’ll also do my best to remember the important things. Like Jesus, and holding my children’s sweet faces in my hands, and celebrating my baby turning three this week. (Oh, now I’m making myself cry.)

Because though the future’s not ours to see, God sees it and knows it is good and has a plan so much bigger than my lists.

And that does give me rest for my soul.




Classical (ish)

If you’ve read the book, you’ll see the irony in this
post.  (I’m also using Facebook for the
book, which is even more ironic.)

You see, Julianne, my protagonist, started out thinking the
Classical method was not the homeschooling approach for her. A YouTube video of a four-year-old quoting facts about Alexander the Great and reciting Latin declensions freaked her out. As the year progressed, however, some aspects of
the Classical system grew on her and she started incorporating it (a bit) into their home.



Truth is stranger than fiction. We have joined a Classical Conversations group for this upcoming year.

We’re not doing the Foundations level (morning memory work class), but we are doing the Essentials level (afternoon writing/grammar/math games class). I really like the structured approach to writing, especially for those who hate to write (cough *boys*).

I heard about it in April, and immediately loved it and signed up my son. (It starts with the third grade, so my other two are too young for it.)

In June, I opened the grammar guide that could have doubled as a college text, freaked out, and after talking to several people, promptly withdrew my son.

Then in late July, I watched Andrew Pudewa’s (Institute for Excellence in Writing) DVD covering the whole writing method, and waffled. I talked to some more people about it, and decided to re-enroll my son.

Don’t you feel so sorry for the poor lady that had to deal with me? Me too.  (To her credit, she was so gracious and accommodating and didn’t once say, “Are you insane?” which she had every right to do.)

But I decided that if I re-enrolled him, we were just going to do it, get whatever we could out of it, and not worry about the rest. I don’t want the homework to take over our lives. If it starts resulting in tears and frustration (I mean more than the customary tears and frustration), we’ll just cut some out.

Here’s how I am planning to dip our toes into the Classical waters, without jumping in headfirst quite yet:

  1. No freaking out. I’m done. No more allowed. I think it can be overwhelming for
    new moms (Almost all the moms at our campus are new). I’ll be the picture of calm. If people start getting stressed out, I’ll lead us all in Que Sera Sera. (What? You don’t believe that?)
  2. Listen to the Memory Work CDs in the car and/or at bedtime.These are painless and fun, and have memorable songs that teach all kinds of facts about ancient history, geography, math, science, and English. We’re skipping Latin. I’m just not up for that yet.

(My son says he wants to learn the Latin part on the CD though! As he said, “Not many kids know Latin. I mean, except for those Latin kids.” )

3. Do our writing homework for class and as much of the Grammar homework as fits into the time I have allocated. I don’t want it to be a huge part of our days, so I may cut some homework out. I will fight to protect reading time, imaginative play, and time outside, so this will have to fit in around those things.

4. Review the week’s memory work at dinner. We don’t have to do any of the memory work because we’re not in the morning class. But I want to because we’re
studying ancient cultures this year anyway for history. And I want our family to
go to Africa this summer, Lord willing, so I want to learn some of the
geography of the area. And while we’re at it, we might as well see what we can
learn of the timeline facts.

So my plan is to hang up the page with all that week’s memory work on the wall in the kitchen (that’s the clipboard you see in the picture), and tape the timeline cards up. At dinner, we can discuss and review. We’ll see how much we manage to get.

(And truth be told, we need something to do at dinner anyway. My husband’s often not home yet, and trying to force polite, stimulating conversation with my children is a lot like trying to have intellectual discussions with a tree full of screaming monkeys. This gives us something interesting to do.)

We’ll see how that all works out.








5. Read what my kids read. This has nothing to do with Classical Conversations, but is an idea my friend distilled down for me from A Thomas Jefferson Education. I forget why that’s Classical, but somehow it is. By reading the same chapter books my kids are, we can discuss the ideas in them.  So, whatever (easy)
chapter books my son is reading, I want to read them too so we can discuss.

Here’s the weird thing: I’m really excited! I love studying this material, love learning the history and facts that I never learned in school. The kids seem to like it as well, seeing how the pieces fit together.

I don’t know that I see the value in it for a four-year-old, if that was my oldest child. I think I’d rather let him play in the sandbox. But at eight, my son really can understand what we’re learning, and my six-year-old daughter can get bits and pieces. My two-year-old can sit in his booster seat, grin adorably at us, and try to say “Mesopotamia.”

It seems like a good time to start.

Do you do incorporate pieces of the Classical approach? What do you do at your house?

Official programs/resources
Excellence in Writing

Blogs by moms
Ann Voskamp’s approach is “Simple Classical,” which I love.
CC resources: The Corkums and Half a Hundred Acre Wood

BONUS: I was looking at the Corkums resources for Cycle 1 Week 1 (the week we are on) and found this rap (and the idea to use a croissant) about the Fertile Crescent. Isn’t it hilarous? I’ll be showing my kids this one!