29 April 2010


(This picture has nothing to do with anything in this post. But let's face it. You don't want to read the blog without a few pics thrown in....)

I'm basically writing this to hold myself accountable.

You know, if I put it out there for five or so people to read, maybe I'll be embarrassed if I don't actually get it done.

Things I'd Like to Accomplish Before July 5th:

[July 5th is the new year around here. Why? Well, it boils down to the fact that between April 15th and July 5th, we have Anniversary, Mothers Day (times three...), My Mother In Law's Birthday, My Birthday, End of School, Collins's Birthday, Ada Brooks's Birthday, Father's Day (times three...), My Daddy's Birthday, and Paul's Birthday. Oh, and our country's. But it's on the same day as Paul's, so...

Also, we're taking the month of June, pretty much, off of school, but will resume in July, so it really will be a new beginning.]

Whew - long parenthetical. Back to my list:

1 - Clear out digital pictures

2 - Print and Frame some good ones (which will involve me asking nicely for Paul to hurry up and repair some frames for me...)

3 - Continue work on healthier family meals menu, so we don't all grow up to be hugemongous.

4 - Write Ada Brooks's history curriculum for next year. She'll be studying the years 1850 forward. Which is a lot. I've got to decide which topics we'll cover, how to cover them, etc. Suggestions are welcome.

5 - Teach the kids to ride their bikes without training wheels.

6 - Take children to zoo no fewer than five times.

7 - Take children to hike behind the science museum on pretty days.

8 - Teach Eason to swim.

9 - Plan birthday celebrations for Ada, Collins and Paul. Ada Brooks wants a baking birthday party... and I'm determined that we will celebrate poor, sweet third child Collins.

10 - Learn to exercise regularly....

What am I supposed to be doing before everyone else wakes up? exercising....

What am I doing? yeah....kiss my tail.

The history curriculum writing goal is the most important, I'd say. It's also the most appealing and the scariest.

The classical method of educating says that rather than doing things like "social studies" and "mississippi history" and "geography" and "british history" - we just do history - we just learn it - we learn the Story of the World - basically - (which also happens to be the very clever name of one of the top classical history curricula)

You also, when classically educating, tie in everything to the historical period you are studying. So, you actually study literature from the same period.

And yes, even in first grade. Number one education myth: young children cannot learn 'complicated' things. Most young children won't get it. But they can learn it. And when you introduce it to them early, when you reread Dickens in highschool, they are familiar with it, and are not scared of it. Also, hopefully, they learn to love the stuff early.

So, there are many curricula for this....

But, you start this whole home educating project - for various reasons - and then all of a sudden you actually get to influence what your child learns. You don't just turn them over. Like, since I love nineteenth century short stories (occurrence at owl creek bridge...cannot beat that stuff), and twentieth century novels (great gatsby, anybody?), I can pick those. Since I think Vatican II is important, I'll get to teach my first grader about it.

And yes, this is why homeschooling terrifies some people. We've got all these people out there DECIDING what to teach their children. Well, my friends, how much do you know about your children's teachers? Because I had some great ones. And some awful ones. And some years I learned a ton about great things (thank you, Mrs. King, Mrs. Orr, Mrs. Jenkins and many others), but in some classes, I didn't learn jack. And yes, some of those teachers had agendas. Good and bad agendas.

[Number two education myth of the day: Teachers in schools - public and private - and at home - are just trying to make the most educated people. Nope - some are trying to make a living doing the least amount of work possible, some are trying to instill certain values, some have a particular affinity for some cause, some of those crazy home educators are actually trying to produce anarchists or terrorists or just plain republicans or democrats. Every educator in the world has an agenda - very few of us just want to impart knowledge]

Whose agenda would you like directing the education of your children?

Pros and Cons to everything.

So, some of the curricula are too focused on America - yes, we're important - but so is the rest of the world. We live in a global society blah blah blah....

And some of them I just don't like. I'm picky like that.

So, I'm writing our own... Pray hard for me. I'll do progress updates. You know, so I don't end up just saying to ada brooks "go to the library - read about the last 150 years..."


  1. jessica Q. White29 April, 2010 14:33

    I have comments about your post. Good ones. I am going to email you though.

  2. is the great gatsby really one of your favorite books? i'm not sure we can be facebook friends anymore.


  3. yes, crob, it is. top twenty.