Friday, September 19, 2008

Morning Time Plans: January 2008

January 7, 2008

The Water Music
Folk Song:
Arkansas Traveler
The Merchant of Venice

Prayer Request

Bible Time

The Book of Life
Daily Proverbs

To Learn:
Psalm 91

To Review:

Books of the OT
Lord’s Prayer
12 Tribes of Israel:
12 Apostles
John 1:1-14
Gen 1:1-5
Books of NT

Hymn Singing

To Learn:

In Christ Alone

To Review:
O For a Thousand Tongues to Sing
Glorious is Thy Name
God Leads us Along
O God our Help
Great is Thy Faithfulness


To Learn:
Lake Isle of Innisfree
Cuddle Down

To Review:



This is the weather the cuckoo likes,
And so do I;
When showers betumble the chestnut spikes,
And nestlings fly;
And the little brown nightingale bills his best,
And they sit outside at 'The Traveller's Rest,'
And maids come forth sprig-muslin drest,
And citizens dream of the south and west,
And so do I.


This is the weather the shepherd shuns,
And so do I;
When beeches drip in browns and duns,
And thresh and ply;
And hill-hid tides throb, throe on throe,
And meadow rivulets overflow,
And drops on gate bars hang in a row,
And rooks in families homeward go,
And so do I.

-- Thomas Hardy

Isn't that an awesome poem?

Where the Boats Go? RLS
The Second Coming Yeats
The Lamb Blake
Little Things "Little drops of water...."
The Charge of the Light Brigade Tennyson

Misc. Memory:
Read Amendments: 1-27 One a day
Bill of Rights 1
Bill of Rights 2
Bill of Rights 3
Bill of Rights 4

Reading Aloud :

English Literature for Boys and Girls We are on this chapter and we don't read a whole chapter in a sitting.
Famous Men of the Middle Ages I have a vintage copy of this.
Dave Barry Slept Here OK, this is completely random but as I said before the children were picking this one up and reading it so I thought it would be safer to read out loud. It is very funny if you already have a working knowledge of American History. The language is pretty bad though, hence the reading aloud.
The Little History of the World

The Tale of Desperaux Recommend by dear friend Linda. Lots of fun. We have a little mouse in our family with big ears and big eyes, the runt of the litter: Alex.

Sentinel, City of Destiny by Landel Bilbrey. I am reading a review copy of the book and I must say that my 2 little boys, 9 & 6 are enthralled. It is somewhat along the lines of Pilgrim's Progress. We read the chapter slowly discussing as we go. Andrew and Alex are great little boys to discuss books with. They make random jumps of logic into subjects yet to be discovered by philosophers. This has made reading this book a lot of fun.

Ambleside Time:

Little Pilgrims Progress
Anderson’s Fairy Tales
Asking Father
Pilgrim Stories

Morning Time Plans: November 2007

Da Vinci


(Taking a break from Rimsky-Korsakov but continuing with a Russian and longing for a little

Folk Song:

Go Get an Ax

Star of the County Down


Measure for Measure

Philopoemen with Anne White's notes

Bible Time:
The Book of Life: David and Absalom
Proverbs: one daily
Bite-Sized Theology

Finish learning John 1:1-14

Micah 6:8
Lord's Prayer
Habakkuk 3:17-19
12 Tribes of Israel
List of Judges

Continue learning: In Christ Alone

We Gather Together
Tender Mercies
Arise, Arise
Come Ye Thankful People Come
Bringing in the Sheaves
Now Thank We All Our God

Begin learning: The Lake Isle of Innisfree
and Where the Boats go for the little guys

How Did you Die? Cooke
Opportunity by Sill
Casey at the Bat
Sail On by Miller

Misc Memory:
Finish learning the Preamble
Read through the 27 amendments to the Constitution one a day

State Capitals
We Shall Fight by Winston Churchill
The Apostles Creed
Continents and Oceans

Read Aloud:
English Literature for Boys and Girls. We are on Dryden this week.
Famous Men of the Middle Ages. We are on Robert the Bruce.
A Little History of the World. This book is growing on me after a bad start.
Just David. This is growing on me also. I hope we can finish it in the next couple of weeks.
The Magician's Nephew. Finish this week.
Dave Barry Slept Here (edited by me) They were all picking it up and reading it so I thought it would be safer if I read it out loud. It is a little confusing for Alex.

Ambleside Time:
Russian Fairy Tales
Little Pilgrim's Progress
Asking Father. I keep avoiding this one.
Pilgrim Stories by Pumphrey and old favorite revisited.
A Thanksgiving Story in Vermont by Jeff Barth

Morning Time Plans: October 2007

First Week of October 2007

Da Vinci


Folk Song:

Go get an Ax,
Star of the County Down


Measure for Measure


Bible Time
The Book of Life ( KJV Bible readings with supplements, photographs, fine art and poetry)
Bitesize Theology by Peter Jeffery (Thank-you, Just Janet! This is the perfect MT complement, tiny chapters on theological topics.) I just added the Amazon link to this book.

To Relearn daily: John 1:1-14

For review one each day:
III John 1:4

Is 40:28-31

III John 1:4

Is 40:28-31

Jude 1:20-25

Hymn Singing:

Arise, Arise: last week sing daily

For Review:
Brethren we Have Me to Worship (Ok, I realized as we sang this today that I don't LIKE this song. Do you?)

Bringing in the Sheaves

Brother’s Keeper (old Promise Keepers chorus)

Christ the Lord is Risen Today

Come Thou Fount


The Second Coming, repeat daily

For Review:

Autumn Fires by Robert Louis Stevenson

In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall!

The Statue of Liberty Emma Lazarus

The Boy we Want (From the Book of Virtues by William Bennett)

The Creation Cecil Frances Alexander

Obedience to Parents Issac Watts

Misc. Memory

Preamble, Daily

Contemplate Samuel Adams

Declaration of Independence

Bill of Rights #1
Bill of Rights #2
Bill of Rights #3

Civics Lesson

Reading Aloud:

English Lit for Boys and Girls

Famous Men of the Middle Ages

A Little History of the World I am not ready to recommend this book although it is highly thought of elsewhere.

Just David
The verdict is still out on this one.

Ambleside Time:
My Book House Vol 1 & 2
Russian Fairy Tales
Little Pilgrims Progress
Anderson’s Fairy Tales
Asking Father

Morning Time Plans: August 2007

August 200


Da Vinci

Downloaded from Eclassical

The above is the exact file I downloaded. I plan to just have it playing every morning for a while, offer some introductory information and that is all for now. Later I will try to come back and discuss the selections more fully with the children.

Folk Song:
Go Get an Ax
Star of the County Down

King Henry VIII

If you are paying attention you may notice that this was our play from last term. For the sake of honesty let me now admit with 2 weddings and a husband working out of town and a few more things besides, there never really was a last term. It happens. All the more reason to make hay while the sun shines. Which reminds me, it is going to be in the 100's all this week. I am so thankful for air conditioning. If you walk outside your breath gets sucked away.


Ambleside Online is my source for the above selections.

Prayer Request:


The Book of Life
Continue from where we last left off. I just read a page or two a day.

Bitesized Theology
Great for discussion.

I am adding back in the reading of one Proverb daily since I am not satisfied that my younger children have absorbed as many Proverbs as my older children.

Review M-F:

II Timothy 2:5

Psalm 139

Hebrews 11:1-6

Psalm 4:4-8


Hymn Singing

Note: As the year goes along I am going to switch gears on our hymn singing to incorporate our church bulletin. You know you are going to a good church when you put the bulletin in a binder every week.

New Song to Learn:
Tender Mercies

Songs to review: M-F

A Mighty Fortress

Alas and Did my Saviour Bleed

All Creatures of our God and King

All Glory Laud and Honor

All Hail the Power

The Second Coming Yeats

Review M-F:


Friends, Romans, Countrymen..


The Fools Prayer

Misc. Memory

To re-learn:
The Nicene Creed

Review M-F:

Give me Liberty

President's Bee

President's Bee


Reading Aloud:

English Lit for Boys and Girls

Gombrich's A Little History of the World


The Rose of Paradise Howard Pyle This might possibly be the rarest book I own and it come highly recommended by the Bluedorns.

Ambleside Time:

Slow and steady wins the race. Yes, these are the same books we were reading last year.

*Viking Tales
*My Book House
*Little Pilgrim's Progress

I know I have many new readers and I always get lots of questions whenever I post one of these. I don't mind at all answering questions but there is already a vast amount of info in my archives about this subject. Much of this list will stay the same through the whole term but the review work changes each week.

Morning Time Plans: January 2007

After vacations and holidays we are finally back in the swing of having our regular Morning Time. I am going to try to be a little more detailed in this post than usual because I am getting new readers lately and homeschooling moms are getting to be so young I can hardly imagine it. I will give you the plans we completed this week along with next weeks plans.

January 2007

Artist: John Constable. Ambleside Online is doing Turner but frankly I like Constable better. Also you will find his name sprinkled about in English murder mysteries. I am terribly excited about this term's artist. I am ready to sell my house and begin my walking tour of the British Isles.


Carnaval can be downloaded free here and Scenes from Childhood for Piano here. These wonderful, free resources came through on the Ambleside Online email list which I rarely have time to read but consider a source of unending goodies.

Folk Song:
Minstrel Boy which the boys are enjoying far more than An English Country Garden (my favorite) or Scarborough Fair. I bought the Homestead Picker's CD years ago. It greatly simplifies this subject.

: We will be reading Henry VIII this term if we ever finish our current Plutarch reading. I think we all enjoyed Richard III and his name has become a new byword in our house which according to Josephine Tey he doesn't deserve.

Antony. This is a long life and it is taking us a long time. I find I can only read 2 pages of Plutarch at a time. The good thing about Antony is that his life is very familiar to all of the children so they get more out of it.

Bible Time:
Read-alouds: The Book of Life Vol 3: The Life of David.
Bitesize Theology a book recommended by Janet.

Passage to memorize: last week we worked on Psalm 100 and this week we will work on Eph 6:10-18. I have been plowing through new passages with my younger children but I finally had to realize I needed to start all over with this group as if they never learned our review passages because they never had. I really struggled with making this decision but I have conceded the point for all our of memory work.

Review: Psalm 100, Psalm 104, Psalm 100, Phil 4:4-8, Psalm 121.

Hymns: Gloria Patri last week. A Mighy Fortress this week.
Review: Psalm 148, Beneath the Blood-stained Lintel, Navy Hymn( Eternal Father Strong to Save), Great is the Lord our God.

Andrew & Alex :Who Has Seen the Wind by Rosseti Emily: The Creation by Cecil Francis Alexander Benjamin: The Charge of the Light Brigade. Colloquy with everyone: The Ballad of the White Horse by Chesterton.

Misc. Memory: The Declaration of Independence. Read aloud: Civics lesson. I go over a couple of these questions each MT.

Preamble, Comtemplate by Sam Adams, West Point Cadet's Creed, Bill of Rights.

Read Alouds:

English Literature for Boys and Girls. We are on the Shakespeare chapters. Wonderful.
The Story of the Middle Ages : Almost finished.
The Princess and Curdie

Ambleside Time with Alex and Andrew:

Viking Tales
My Book House: In the Nursery and My Storytime

1 Petersham book. This week The Story Book of Oil.
Little Pilgrim's Progress
Dinosaur book by ICR Since we returned from our break I can't find this book but I will! At Ambleside Time Alex and Andrew sit on the couch with me and our stack of books. They take turns picking out books and then narrating. This is usually the last thing on my to-do list everyday which means many days it gets skipped which is a shame since Alex benefits greatly from it.

Morning Time Plans: September 2006

Late September Morning Time Week:






Bassoon Concerto in B Flat

Folk Song:

Cockles and Mussels


Richard III




New Memory:
Proverbs 20:3
" It is an honour for a man to cease from strife but every fool will be meddling"

Don't ask!

Psalm 90
Books of the Old Testament
I Corinthians 4:16-18
Psalm 24

Veni, Veni in Latin

Unbounded Grace
What a Friend We Have in Jesus
When I Survey (tune 1)
When I Survey (tune 2)
Whiter Than Snow


The Crisis Thomas Paine (not actually poetry)


Horatius at The Bridge
The Charge of the Light Brigade (Tennyson)
The Arrow and the Song ( Longfellow)
Crossing the Bar (Tennyson)
Pretty Good ( Osgood)

Misc. Memory:

The Declaration of Independence through the 1st, "He has...."
The list of Biblical Judges
Civics Questions

Presidents Bee
States and Capitals Bee
We Shall Fight (Winston Churchill)
The Apostles Creed

Reading Aloud:

English Literature for Boys and Girls
The Story of the Middle Ages
Famous Men of the Middle Ages
The Princess and the Goblin

Ambleside Time with the little boys:
Viking Tales
Poetry (My Book House Vol 1)
My Book House vol 2 Stories
The Great Dinosaur Mystery and the Bible

They Loved to Laugh

Morning Time Plans: August 2006

ARTIST: John William Waterhouse

COMPOSER: Mozart all music files downloaded from eclassical.

Piano Concerto 20 (2 weeks)

Symphony 40 (4 weeks)

Quintet in A maj for clarinet (2 weeks)

Piano Sonata in A maj K.331 (2 weeks)

Concerto for bassoon and orchestra in B-flat major, K. 191 (the only bassoon concerto he wrote)

FOLKSONG: Cockles & Mussels




BIBLE: Daily: The Book of Life Vol 4 The Nation of Israel, Psalm or Proverb, Psalm 90 Continued from last year ( I am just not happy with our recall on this one.), Books of the NT.

REVIEW: John 14:1-7, John 14:1-7, John 14:21, John 14:21, Psalm 20.

HYMNS: King Alfred's War Song music by Kemper Crabb, Arr by Greg Wilbur

REVIEW: O Sacred Head, Saviour Like a Shepherd Lead Us, Softly & Tenderly(Ok, I just threw this one away), Soldiers of Christ Arise, Sound the Battle Cry.

POETRY: No new poem yet.

REVIEW: Horatius at the Bridge (2x's this week.) I finally got smart and recorded this onto my computer so I wouldn't have to read it everyday. It takes 20 minutes to read. Opportunity by Edward Sill, Casey at the Bat, Pussywillow.

MEMORYWORK: List of Biblical Judges Cont.from last year, Relearn Declaration of Indepencence to "He has...", Begin learning:

"These are the times that try men's souls: The summer soldier and the sunshine patriot will, in this crisis, shrink from the service of his country; but he that stands it Now, deserves the love and thanks of man and woman. Tyranny, like hell, is not easily conquered; yet we have this consolation with us, that the harder the conflict the more glorius the triumph."

Thomas Paine, The Crisis -- December 1776

REVIEW: Bill of Rights #1, #2, Preamble, Contemplate by Samuel Adams.



The Story of the Middle Ages by Samuel Harding

Famous Men of the Middle Ages ( My own antique copy)

The Princess and the Goblin by George Macdonald

English Literature for Boys and Girls


Viking Tales

My Book House

Various nursery rhymes and poems

The Story of Science Fabre


They Loved to Laugh by Kathryn Worth<

Morning Time Plans: February 2006

Vermeer ( I haven't done a thing about Vermeer yet this term except notice that the John Cleese Taming of the Shrew movie reminded me of a Vermeer.)

Henry Purcell, Baroque:
(Same with Purcell as Vermeer, his music is not online at eclassical so I must order a cd.)

Folk Song:
English Country Garden


A Winter’s Tale

Aemillus Paulus ( about 1/2 way finished with this.)

Prayer Requests

READ: Valley of Vision prayer daily

Pray for the Embree family in MD whose son Ethan appears to have drowned.

Bible Time
Psalm 90


Matthew 11:28-30
Matthew 16: 24-28
I Chron 4:9-10 ( Yes, the prayer of Jabez. Hey, it is in the bible and better to know it first hand than through a book.)
Books of OT

The Book Of Life: Judges

Hymn Singing

Psalm 48 (NEW)

Jesus Shall Reign
Joyful, Joyful
Just as I am
Lead On O King Eternal
Leaning on the Everlasting Arms


Horatius at the Bridge

The Road Not Taken

The Pasture

The Village Blacksmith Longfellow

Paul Revere’s Ride


Misc. Memory
Bill of Rights : All Week

Reading Aloud:

The Story of the Romans 2 chaps a day

English Lit for Boys and Girls


Hostage to Alexander
Hugenot Garden

Ambleside Time:

50 Famous Stories
( Finish this week)


Little Women ( Remember I plod.)

Morning Time Plans: January 2006

Morning Time plans for a week in January 2006:


Henry Purcell

Folk Song:
English Country Garden

A Winter’s Tale

Aemillus Paulus

Bible Time:

Psalm 33
Book of Life
Books of OT ( for Bible Drill program at church)

(I have decided to take 2 or 3 days per review verses for better retention)

Dueteronomy 17:1-28
Matthew 5:3-16
Ruth 1:16 &17

Hymn Singing:

New: Any Suggestions?


O God our Help in Ages Past
Great is Thy Faithfulness
Hallelujah, What a Saviour
Higher Ground


Horatius at the Bridge

Hamlet’s Soliloquy
History Poem
Marc Antony’s Speech

Misc. Memory:


We Shall Fight
The Apostles Creed
Continents and Oceans
Heidelberg Catechism 1
Ambleside Creed

Reading Aloud
The Story of the Romans
English Lit for Boys and Girls
Opal Wheeler Bio of Beethoven

Hostage to Alexander
Hugenot Garden

Ambleside Time:
The House at Pooh Corner (finished)
Now We are Six
50 Famous Stories

Little Women

Morning Time Plans: October 2005

Begin: October 27


Piano music:
Emporer, Sonatas 8 & 14

Hudson River Valley Artists



Folk Song:

The Outlandish Knight

Bible Time
Book of Life ( Joshua leading Israel into the promised land)

Psalm 33

Micah 6:8

Habakkuk 3:17-19

12 Tribes of Israel

Books of OT

Books of NT

Hymn Singing

Psalm 119X

(Begin practicing Latin Christmas songs)


Coram Deo

Count Your Blessings

Crown Him With Many Crowns

Dwelling in Beulah Land

Face to Face

Horatius at the Bridge


The Destruction of Sennacharib

A Little Broher Follows Me

Breathes by Sir Walter Scott

King Alfred’s War Song

Recessional by Kipling

Misc. Memory:

Polite Moments Book 2 (Finish)

Amendment 2 & 3

Amendment 4 & 5

Amendment 6 & 7

Amendment 8 & 9

Amendment 10

Reading Aloud :

*The Story of the Romans

*English Literature for Boys and Girls ( I am loving this one!)

* Friendly Gables ( You were right, Jeannine, the kids insisted on moving on to this book.)


* A Child's geography

Ambleside Time Reading :

*50 Famous Stories
*The House at Pooh Corner
*Now We Are Six


*Little Women

Morning Time Plans: September 2005

September 19, 2005

Beethoven’s 5th Symphony ( last week)

Hudson River Valley Artists Thomas Cole Voyage of Life (4 Paintings)

Shakespeare: Othello

Plutarch: Timoleon

Folk Song: The Outlandish Knight

Bible Time: Psalm 33
Book of Life
Psalm 150
Hebrews 12: 1-7
Proverbs 4:20-27
I John 4:1-11
Proverbs 20:11

Hymn Singing: Psalm 119 X
America The Beautiful
And Can It Be
As The Deer
Be Still My Soul
Beneath the Cross

Poetry :
Gilbert & Sullivan: I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General
Crossing the Bar
The First Thanksgiving
Pretty Good
Mist and All
Mr Meant-To

Misc. Memory:
Polite Moments Book 2
Gettysburg Address
Give Me Liberty
State & Capitals

Reading Aloud :

*The Story of the Romans

*English Literature for Boys and Girls

* The Story of Mankind ( Conquest part 2)

*The Wheel on the School


*A Child’s Geography

Ambleside Time Reading :

Trial and Triumph

50 Famous Stories

Winnnie the Pooh


Little Women

Morning Time Plans August 2005

August 15-19

Beethoven’s 5th Symphony ( 4 Weeks)

Hudson River Valley Artists

(Term 1)
Shakespeare: Much Ado About Nothing

Plutarch: Timoleon

Bible Time
Book of Life

I Cor 13

II Cor 4:16-18

Psalm 42

II Cor. 10:5

Psalm 100

Eph 6:10-18

Hymn Singing
More Secure is No one Ever
Tune: Children of the Heavenly Father


Psalm 148 & Psalm 46 C
Beneath the Blood-Stained Lintel
Navy Hymn
Great is the Lord Our God
Psalm 98

Gilbert & Sullivan:I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General

Keep a’ Goin’, The Gift

Be Strong


How Did You Die?


Misc. Memory
Polite Moments

We Shall Fight Winston Churchill
The Apostle’s Creed

Reading Aloud
*Our Island Story( Finish this week) Then begin English Literature for Boys & Girls

*The Story of the Romans

* The Story of Mankind ( Conquest part 2)
* How’s Inky

*The Wheel on the School


Ambleside Time Reading :

Trial and Triumph

Tanglewood Tales

50 Famous Stories

Winnnie the Pooh


Little Women
Bible Study

(Please forgive the formating. I tried to copy/paste from my working sheet)

Books for Boys: The Middle Grades

In the comments to the Boys Will Be Boys post there is some discussion on what are good books for boys.

warned against too much fantasy and science fiction. We do read both genres but carefully. Lloyd Alexander is a favorite around here although I must admit I have shied away from Madeleine L'Engle, I forget why.

The Deputy Headmistress
and others suggested the new Dangerous Book for Boys along with Ernest Thomas Seton books most especially Two Little Savages.

Linda mentioned good biographies. When Timothy was 5 I began reading out loud "The Story Of" books. We had a blast reading about Dan Beard, Winston Churchill and others. These are not generally recommended for young boys and I suppose they are probably written with a 4-6th grader in mind but we both have good memories of those days.

Instead of listing all the wonderful books for boys we have found over the years, and I am sure I have written about this before, today I will just list a few of the authors or series we have enjoyed.

The Sugar Creek Gang
, older edition. I highly recommend these books. They are quite compelling and enjoyable and their simple values are often a jolt to the modern reader. PLEASE avoid the updates. They lose all the charm of the originals.

Albert Terhune Payson
Walt Morey
Jim Kjelgaard
Jack O'Brien's Silver Chief books are among the best.
Walter Farley

The Great Brain series although I say this with some caution. The Great Brain in the hands of a middle school boy can create a monster.

The Ambleside Online
lists are full of great books for boys. Most classics mentioned for this age group are there for a reason.

Howard Pyle, a not-to-be-missed author including Men of Iron.

I don't really own very many Christian fiction books for boys. I just can't get excited about those books where they have a famous missionary as part of some exciting plot. I may be wrong about that. We have enjoyed a few Robert Elmer books over the years and I mean that we really have enjoyed them. Maybe others can suggest recent Christian publishing successes. On the other hand almost anything from Inheritance Publications is great, especially their Scout series or their Meindert DeJong books.

We like GA Henty, not in large doses or the plots begin to muddle but he really is a great author for boys.

Years ago BJU Press put out several wonderful books that have become family favorites:
A Place for Peter and any books by Elizabeth Yates.
The Stolen Years by Gloria Repp
Zoli's Legacy and sequels,
In Search of name a few.
I commend BJU Press on their great selection of repubs.

James Daughtery
Robert Lawson
Rosemary Sutcliff
Joseph Altsheler
Allen not miss Allen French.
Stephen Meader..don't miss him either.

Black Fox of Lorne
and many others by Marguerite de Angeli.

Christian Liberty Press is also a great place to look for manly books including Iron Scouts of the Conferderacy by Lee McGiffen. My boys have gone on to read more about John Singleton Mosby after reading Iron Scouts.

Reading aloud Childhood of Famous Americans is a great way to get boys interested in historical figures at a young age. Our favorites are Francis Marion, William Penn and Thomas Jackson.

And finally one more great publisher of books for boys: Bethlehem Books.

The problem with recommending books is the same now as it was in Solomon's time. Of the making of books there is no end. This is a sadly incomplete list which basically covers 3rd -7th grades. I am sure I haven't even scratched the surface but for those of you just hitting these years for the first time this should get you started.

I can already feel myself thumping my forehead because I forgot to mention a wonderful book.

I Have my Standards!

I woke up this morning with the article The Curse of the Standard Bearers in my email box. I skimmed through the words because from the title I thought it was going to be some whiny tome on how parents must have more standards, a word I have come to hate along with its twin character. Many of you know that I will shun almost anything touted to develop character in my children especially if it includes definitions. What I really want my children to have is the fruit of the Spirit and I do not think this is splitting hairs. Interesting enough, I cannot give my children the fruit of the Spirit so it changes my tactics drastically.

Almost every dysfunctional homeschooling family I have met, including sometimes my own, trips over the standard-bearer stone. Wives fall down over this one big-time. I have always said that Gothard families typically have a strong wife and weak husband. The wife uses spiritual blackmail to control her husband and her children. After all if she takes the moral high ground first he is left with a weak fighting position. I have written at least two posts on this subject before. This error is just so subtil (spelling error intentional). After all, if I am right, I am right, right?

Gestapo Homeschooling Moms

Gestapo Homeschooling Moms, Part 2

Gestapo Homeschooling Moms, Part 2

After the post yesterday I thought I better come out of the closet and admit that I have been a GHM. I am a recovering GHM, so to speak. I think what helped me to recover was having a stubborn husband and lots of strong-willed boys. Not to criticize.....

My dear friend, Linda and I, frequently discuss how obnoxious we used to be. The good news is that we are still friends and are recovering together. I once assaulted a lady in Linda's own home, but to tell the truth when it comes to Bill Gothard I still have trouble keeping my mouth shut. After 5 years of intensely studying ATI and 5 more paying attention, I have lots of facts and figures readily mounted in my cannon. I have planted my flag on that hill but I am trying to learn how to win the war not just the battles.

Have you guessed that I am more bold in writing than in speech? I usually fall prey to domineering personalities. Then I run home and blog about the culprits, something I couldn't do pre-blog.
Blogging: therapy for chickens!

I used to just call Linda and she would say, "You always meet the weirdest people."

I don't want to tear down homeschooling moms either. I really want to build them up. It is just from my perspective we could all use a little lightening up. Sometimes homeschooling enables controlling women. As women, I think we all tend to be controlling already. We need to understand the sin behind a controlling spirit, not feed the beast.

We need to make sure we have compassion on those around us, even the domineering ones. I think, in the end, God allowed me to be surrounded by GHMs in order to let me see what I was becoming.

Phil 2:3 Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.

Gestapo Homeschooling Moms

I woke up at 2:00 am with lots of thoughts to put in this post. I am afraid I should have risen and written them then.

I have blogged about this before and I didn't really invent the term. Paul Washer, the homeschooling dad and evangelist, used the term when he spoke at our church. Here is how he used it:

He was with a group of people from church at a restaurant. He was waiting for his wife outside the bathrooms and his baby started to scream. He frantically looked for a pacifier which his wife rarely used. Coming out of the restrooms was a little homeschooled girl from his church. She saw the pacifier and kinda huffed and turned around looking for her mom. Her mom came out of the bathroom took one look at the baby with pacifier and said something to her daughter like, "It's Ok, honey, some people just don't know any better." Paul said he was ready to punch the lady.

So that is one picture of the gestapo homeschooling mom.

The truth is that it was very hard to homeschool 25 years ago and almost any family that did homeschool had to have a certain amount of strength. Sometimes this made those families hard to get along with but they did pave the way for the rest of us. Those days are over for now. It is time to end the reign of the gestapo mom.

Gestapo moms are those who having control of a small world in their own homes, seek to spread their control outside of their sphere of influence.

It isn't just a matter of being opinionated. Blogging is opinionated but to tell the truth the best blogs are the most opinionated ones. I enjoy reading people's opinions on their blogs, but the gestapo mom seeks not only to give her opinion but force her ideas on those around her.

The gestapo mom is not a Calvinist. She is an Arminian of the worst sort seeking through her own efforts to build her own kingdom. She is self-righteous and lacks humility. ( Please read this sentence in the tongue-in-cheek mode. She is metaphorical arminian.)

Instead of being strong she is manipulative. Her concern is more for outward appearances than true heart issues.

She is a perfectionist who is afraid to let those around her make mistakes. She is usually completely taken by surprise when confronted with sin in her husband or children. She is blind to her own sin unless she does something that makes her look bad and messes up her perfectionist image.

Her sons are effeminate, happily baking bread and cookies, proud that they aren't any good at sports. (Again, generalization, my sons bake cookies when they get hungry, too. Sadly, they usually taste terrible.)

Her husband obeys.

Her children are not allowed to be cold or dirty. She makes all their decisions for them even when they are beyond her reach. She has unreal expectations about their future plans.

Her children are obnoxious and opinionated, too. They are carbon copies of their mom, telling everyone their opinions and ideas, spouting knowledge (so-called) at the least provocation. She admires their boldness. "Mrs Rollins are you sure you want to let your 4 yo carry that (a tiny NASV Bible) to church? That is wrong."

As I said yesterday, she is boorish. She speaks confidently of things she knows nothing about. She is smug and sure. She nods a lot during the sermon. She looks down her nose at you and your children.

She is headed for a fall.

Have you met her?

In the mirror?

Leisure and Creativity

As you know I have been thinking of the concept of leisure and its connection to education for the last 8 months. The more I think on it the stronger the tie becomes. Because learning is hard work, the learner must have time (leisure) to assimilate. That is why entertainment is the antithesis of leisure. Entertainment pulls the learner away from contemplation, keeping him too busy to learn. If the entertainment industry is any indication, our culture has plenty of time. We could be a very educated culture but instead we have traded our time for entertainment rather than leisure. This, I think, is the natural outcome of Enlightenment thinking which puts originality ahead of craftsmanship.

In his character sketch of Bach, Glory and Honor, Greg Wilbur says,

" Emulation of the classics provided a firm foundation in what was excellent and a model on which to base new creative work. This concept also reflected the medieval and Baroque concept that craftsmanship was of greater importance than originality-a view contradicting that held by the emerging secular Enlightenment, which placed individuality and originality above all else."

Somewhere in this thought is the seed for the idea that classical education is not, in the early years, the efficient memorization of facts. The early school years are not the time to be cracking the whip, but rather the time to be developing the palate. This, of course, brings us around to Charlotte Mason. It also hints that much of what is called classical education in the early years is, in fact, the antithesis of true classical education.

With my 5 older boys out of the house for the day, I am going to enjoy my leisure.

Music provided by J S Bach St John Passion

Mea Culpa: Masterly Inactivity

On the CM Series Yahoo Group we are reading through Vol 3 School Education of The Charlotte Mason Series. It is being led by the lovely and intelligent Karen.

Yesterday Tim and I were out of town, I woke up very early and spent some time reading my Bible. While still waiting for him to wake up I decided to read my weekly chapter in School Education. It turned out to be Masterly Inactivity. Reading this chapter turned into a convicting time for me. It was as if an angel had appeared, pointed and said, "You are the woman." In spite of having read this chapter 16 or 17 years ago for the first time, underlining, reading it several other times over the years, the chapter basically describes my biggest mistakes as a parent. I have always said the best parents make the worst mistakes and Charlotte is saying something similar in this chapter. That is not to say I am the best parent but I certainly qualify as most sincere. She is telling us in our enthusiasm to be good parents we should watch out for one serious pitfall. Well, I was watching out for it but I fell into it anyway. I hope you can avoid this same pitfall by listening to my warnings and reading the chapter. It is online.

Here is the heart of the matter:

We ought to do so much for our children, and are able to do so much for them, that we begin to think everything rests with us and that we should never intermit for a moment our conscious action on the young minds and hearts about us. Our endeavors become fussy and restless. We are too much with our children, 'late and soon.' We try to dominate them too much, even when we fail to govern, and we are unable to perceive that wise and purposeful letting alone is the best part of education

I didn't underline that passage the first time around. I probably thought it was mistaken. But this masterly inactivity is not a laissez fair attitude rather:

"It indicates the power to act, the desire to act, and the insight and self-restraint that prohibit action."

The truth is that the homeschooling mom, with such a weight of care, is most in danger of committing this error.

Last year at the Circe Conference, there was much, much talk about leisure and rest. I have been mulling over that quite a bit ever since the conference. I have had my ears tuned to what it means to rest and how that applies practically to my life. It has been rough going. I know there is a direct tie between leisure and learning, and I know Charlotte Mason recognized that and Christ gave it approval when he said that Mary had chosen the better thing but it has been slow going in my home this year. George Grant said yesterday at Parish Presbyterian church that the culmination of joy is rest.

There have been lots of things to disturb my equilibrium this year. To combat the confusion of events I have sought more and more control over the areas of my sovereignty. I have become frustrated and shrill. It is a blessed kindness from God that he planted the seed of rest in my mind last summer and now just when I need it most he is letting it begin to blossom. I look forward to the fruit.

For those of you still suspicious of Charlotte Mason, take a minute to read Masterly Inactivity. I think you will be amazed by her wisdom. Charlotte was a woman without husband or children and yet she was full of God-given wisdom that helped mothers. I know someone like that :)

If you are seeking rest, sounding shrill or pushing too hard take a minute to read the chapter. It is short and easy. I have almost underlined the entire chapter so I am not able to share it all here.

Let me end with a few more quotes:

"She may be the best mother in the world, but the thing that her children will get from her in these moods is a touch of her nervousness––most catching of complaints" OUCH

Finally she ends the chapter on a note of faith:

"When we recognize that God does not make over the bringing up of children absolutely even to their parents, but that He works Himself, in ways which it must be our care not to hinder, in the training of every child, then we shall learn passiveness, humble and wise."

The words of this chapter bring pain to my heart but I am hoping that God has sent them to also bring healing. It is my hope that they will save you pain in the future.

Oral Narration in the Home

What is oral narration and does it work?

In this post I will try to illustrate how our family does Charlotte Mason styled oral narrations. This is how a reductionist does narration. This is narration for the mom with lots of children.

Narration is a tremendous tool for the reductionist. It gives amazing results with little effort on mom's part. I can hardly think of any other educational tool that gives so much for so little.

In our Ambleside time my little boys aged 8 & 5 bring me their stack of Ambleside books.
Right now that includes:
Vol 1 & 2 of the My Bookhouse series. I own my grandmother's copies.
Asking Father. True stories of how God answered prayer through animals. These 2 little guys just love animals.
Viking Tales
I Petersham Book such as The Story of Oil.
Little Pilgrim's Progress.

As you may have noticed these aren't all actually on the Ambleside lists. We have already read through many of the 1st year and 2nd year books so I just pick ones we missed and from my own selection.

I start out by asking Alex to pick a book. He always picks one of the My Bookhouse anthologies. I read the story and ask him to tell me the story.
He stands up and usually says, "Do I have to tell the whole thing?"
I say, "Yes!"
Then he proceeds to tell me the whole thing and then some. I do not write these down. I am a bad mother. Karen Andreola has massive notebooks of her younger children's oral narrations. All of ours are lost in the air.

Nevertheless, all is not lost. Weeks from now Alex will find a reason to give an illustration in conversation and he will invariably say, "You know just like our Ambleside story..." and he will tell the whole story all over again and ask me if I remember. And I will say, "No?"

Andrew picks a book after Alex and narrates. Andrew generally picks Little Pilgrim's Progress, Viking Tales or Asking Father. He likes to jazz it up. Sometimes I have the opposite boy narrate just to keep them listening.

So for about 30 minutes we sit and work through our stories and narrations. It doesn't take very long at all. Even though Alex is only 5 he doesn't have the slightest problem narrating. But to make you feel better I have had children that were terrible narrators. I will sometimes prod a little if the child is reluctant. I will sometimes ask questions but not often. Asking questions defeats the purpose. If a child really can't figure out what I want then I will narrate a few times.

We have never been able to get into the swing of having an exam week as proposed on Ambleside Online as well as by Charlotte Mason herself. Inevitably something comes along to make us lose a week of school and therefore miss exam week. Still if the child has narrated the story he will remember it. Someday I would love to have a real CM year, exams and all but for now I am glad the children
have learned the art of telling back which is also the art of listening. Narration is no little skill to have as the children embark on their lifetime voyage of learning.

Classical Education: Mind AND Soul

Did I ever mention that I don't like "unit" studies? It is just a strange quirk I have. When I first started homeschooling unit studies and Konos were all the rage. I kept trying to do them and we did do a couple of neat unit studies mostly consisting of reading books not making ear canals out of chairs. We did one on the Civil War and one on Lewis and Clark. I had a couple of friends who could beat the life out of a topic and it was impressive. I just never could manage it.

Once I went to a friend's house the day they were learning about the letter P. They were making popcorn and eating peanuts and pickles. I am such a minimalist. I just look at my child and say, "This is P. Remember it or else."

Have you ever wondered what would happen to a child if you didn't teach him his colors or what animals say? Nothing. They will somehow figure out orange is orange by the time they are 6 and mysteriously be able to tell you a lamb says baa. If you put something off too long, like learning to tie shoes, and your child doesn't figure it out, you can always spend a couple of seconds teaching them when they are 6. It will literally take you seconds to teach a child something at 6 that would have taken you days and days at 3 or 4. This principle does not apply to reading to children. Read to them day and night or have an older child do it.

When we were memorizing Paul Revere's Ride my friend's children were running around their neighborhood during the day yelling, "The British are coming." My husband said that would annoy the neighbors. My guess is that my kids and hers both remember the American Revolution or perhaps they have all forgotten it by now. Her kids are married. There are some days I rue ever learning PRR. To this day it will start up in my head like an old love song. I am a little concermed about Horatius at the Bridge but I feel a moral obligation to memorize any poem Ralph Moody's mother knew.

It was a happy day for me when I read Charlotte Mason tweaking the American propensity for unit studies. Half the fun of learning, if not all of it, is making connections. So one day I decided to quit trying to do unit studies and I have never looked back. It has not been a stumbling block at all for my children to hear or read American History, British History and Ancient History all in the same year. I am still not convinced chronological history study is best, although I don't think it hurts, either.

So if you come to our house you won't find me dressed up as Pochahantas, although you might find the kids out back pretending to be John Smith without any help from me at all.

Unit Studies, UHG!!

Did I ever mention that I don't like "unit" studies? It is just a strange quirk I have. When I first started homeschooling unit studies and Konos were all the rage. I kept trying to do them and we did do a couple of neat unit studies mostly consisting of reading books not making ear canals out of chairs. We did one on the Civil War and one on Lewis and Clark. I had a couple of friends who could beat the life out of a topic and it was impressive. I just never could manage it.

Once I went to a friend's house the day they were learning about the letter P. They were making popcorn and eating peanuts and pickles. I am such a minimalist. I just look at my child and say, "This is P. Remember it or else."

Have you ever wondered what would happen to a child if you didn't teach him his colors or what animals say? Nothing. They will somehow figure out orange is orange by the time they are 6 and mysteriously be able to tell you a lamb says baa. If you put something off too long, like learning to tie shoes, and your child doesn't figure it out, you can always spend a couple of seconds teaching them when they are 6. It will literally take you seconds to teach a child something at 6 that would have taken you days and days at 3 or 4. This principle does not apply to reading to children. Read to them day and night or have an older child do it.

When we were memorizing Paul Revere's Ride my friend's children were running around their neighborhood during the day yelling, "The British are coming." My husband said that would annoy the neighbors. My guess is that my kids and hers both remember the American Revolution or perhaps they have all forgotten it by now. Her kids are married. There are some days I rue ever learning PRR. To this day it will start up in my head like an old love song. I am a little concermed about Horatius at the Bridge but I feel a moral obligation to memorize any poem Ralph Moody's mother knew.

It was a happy day for me when I read Charlotte Mason tweaking the American propensity for unit studies. Half the fun of learning, if not all of it, is making connections. So one day I decided to quit trying to do unit studies and I have never looked back. It has not been a stumbling block at all for my children to hear or read American History, British History and Ancient History all in the same year. I am still not convinced chronological history study is best, although I don't think it hurts, either.

So if you come to our house you won't find me dressed up as Pochahantas, although you might find the kids out back pretending to be John Smith without any help from me at all.

Education and the Barbarians or Boys in the Homeschool

I suppose by now a few of you are convinced we are raising barbarians: chest-beating neanderthals. Being one of 2 females among 9 males, I tend to agree. There are some mealtimes when I wonder if our name might be Ponitpee instead of Rollins. And yes one of my sons did smash the ceiling fan right over my head while working on his golf swing with a golf iron in the dining room, sometimes referred to as the china room, in order to set it apart as the civilized room. It is true that all I did was look up and ask him to clean up the mess, please.

For the curious, this son is also sometimes referred to as the human tornado after someone asked us if the damage to our garage was caused by a tornado. Ha, we laugh at tornadoes!

In spite of all that my dh is quite a gentleman and we do try to instill gentlemanly virtues in our sons. Truthfully, you can't exaggerate Tim's (dh) gentlemanly qualities, although I have been known to mention that he is NOT perfect to silly women who think he might be.

On the Ambleside email list many girls ask if a Charlotte Mason education is distinctly feminine.
Absolutely not!!
It has been a wonderful thing in this masculine environment to listen to classical music, study beautiful paintings, read Shakespeare and Plutarch and Churchill.

The boys have thrived taking nature walks. I am sure nature walks were a godsend to my older boys when they were little. What if I had mistakenly kept them cooped up all day? Where would we be now?

Drawing has been another outlet that their masculine natures enjoy.

Poetry, a personal pleasure of mine, has been a part of every single day of their lives. So much so that even the poetry-resistant can be found quoting lines in our home. There is nothing like poetry and memory work for building a family culture.

A liberal arts education is a wonderful way to free a boy's mind, develop his body and encourage his masculinity.

If your son has a math and science bent, all the more reason to give him a strong liberal arts' base.

Nature Studies

It seems rather lame for me to talk of our nature studies over the years when I am looking out the window at high winds and driving rain and looking on the internet at the devastation of a natural disaster. At times like these I wonder why every Christian isn't a Calvinist. Truly nature is an act of God.

The way we have approached nature study has been highly influenced by my original reading of Charlotte Mason's Original Home Education Series some 15
years ago. I have never satisfactorily achieved what Charlotte describes which is why you may benefit from hearing what we have actually achieved.

My older boys all had nature notebooks that I bought from Greenleaf Press. When they finished one I would buy another. Timothy, Nicholas, James and Nathaniel had at times varying degrees a attractive nature drawings. Nicholas and Nathaniel are both talented artists. Because we were never successfully able to draw from specimens and we never got the hang of watercolors, per Charlotte's suggestion, we would work from nature guidebooks.

During our morning time, when we reached the point that I was reading our "fun" book, the children would get out their nature notebooks and Berol pencils and draw. Our notebooks never reached the level of beauty that I have seen accomplished by some "girls" I know but some of the drawings were very nicely done. The real key, I believe, to a nice nature notebook, is time. I have found lately when I set aside "time" for nature drawing we feel rushed and our drawings look rushed but when the children draw while I read there is a sense of leisure about it. I am not sure why.

I am not entirely happy with our new nature notebooks which I bought from a Waldorf school. They seem more temporary and my younger children do not seem to have mature drawing skills. They are still constantly trying to draw houses against my instructions to draw nature. They will draw a garden and put a house by it instead of say an Audubon-type drawing. Speaking of which, Nicholas once drew this turkey to perfection. We frequently used Audobon's Bird's of America for model pictures. Our schooling has become too rushed for me to really help them correct this. This week I will be revamping our schedule to a more relaxed lifestyle in order to facilitate better drawings, perhaps adding in more read aloud time. Stephen Meader has a wonderful book that takes place in the NJ pine barrens, with Audubon's Bird's of America as part of the plot. Can you tell I have forgotten the name of the book ?

As I mentioned, we do take nature walks to point out flowers/wildflowers/herbs which I used to be quite an expert at, while my dh is an true expert on birds. Having been greatly influenced by British authors I truly regret that we have not yet got a handle on identifying trees. For some reason my brain cannot remember from one day to the next what certain trees are called. I personally feel knowing the names of trees is far more valuable information than many scientific facts we try to cram into children. While we do collect wildflowers for vases and some specimens that present themselves, our nature walks are generally informal ways to get the children to become aware of their surroundings. Then even their play time is filled with awareness. I believe firmly in letting children spend many hours out-of-doors, as Charlotte would say.

Finally, we have found joy in reading many books that enhance our knowledge of nature. This morning we just finished reading aloud Sam Campbell's How's Inky. While I didn't enjoy the book from the beginning, it did grow on me and I think it was a great little nature volume. Perhaps in the next few days I can assemble a list of nature titles we have used.


Children are Born Persons

It is a funny thing but teaching and learning are not the same thing. As a mother and a teacher I constantly fall into the trap of thinking if I konk someone over the head with information enough times they will learn. On the other hand, I err in assuming that if I don't teach it they won't learn it.

Yesterday was our first day of school and Andrew, who didn't have a reading lesson all summer and is still in the phonics stage, somehow had a giant leap forward in his reading abilities.

I will never forget the first time my oldest took a standardized test. He was in 3rd grade and scored highest in the subjects we hadn't even studied, like science.

Then there are the times when I throw out questions to the children and they know the answer without having been taught. Ladies, as M-MV says, "Let's not make this harder than it has to be."
And don't forget, As Charlotte has said, "Children are born persons."

Education as an Atmosphere or The Schedule and the Dwaddler

In thinking about the atmosphere of my home it is inevitable that the subject of scheduling comes up. This time of year I am busy building a skeleton of our schedule for next year. While I have always just naturally held to some sort of schedule I think you will be surprised by my thoughts.

Without a doubt scheduling is a tool. Like any tool it can be wielded with skill or it can clumsily cause destruction. There are men who can build furniture with kits and tablesaws and there are men who can build cabinets with a couple of handtools. We each have 24 hours in our day. A schedule will not give us more time. Sometimes a schedule can even steal that time.

If the atmosphere of your home is rich and varied, not filled with computer time, television, movies and gameboys, then you can build an atmosphere of learning without the help of a schedule. I have to admit that in many ways a rigid schedule is a crutch that makes a mother feel more productive. The truth is that you can lead your children to the subject at hand but you can't make them learn. That is why creating an atmosphere of learning is a greater tool than a schedule.

Some of you are like me and feel safer with some sort of schedule in place and some of you tend more toward the bohemian. I believe the key to successful home education is not in the schedule but in the atmosphere of the home.

The real issue that Charlotte foresaw was not scheduling but dawdling. Now there is a major problem for all and sundry. Whether your child is scheduled from sun up to sun down or whether he is free to pursue his own interest the enemy of true learning is dawdling. Have you ever had a child that could do his math in 30 minutes one day and take 4 hours the next? Yes, Ha, now you think I am going to tell you how to cure the child but this blog post is already over long so I will leave you with the dawdler and suggest perhaps rereading Charlotte's Ourselves.

Scripture Memory List

Ok, the post some of you have been waiting for. For your weekend homeschool planning, here is the list of verses we memorized over the years. Some we review but never really remember entirely.

My philosophy has always been that my job, since I am NOT the Holy Spirit, is to give the children lots of hooks in their hearts so that when God is working on them he will have something to grab.

These are the words to hide in their hearts, and the older boys have told me that it works. They do remember God's word when facing trials, speaking with non-Christians and other Christians, or are just in need of encouragment.

I used to tell them all this memory work was for the time when they were in prison ( for righteousness sake) and the rats were nibbling their toes. :cross:

My original goal was to memorize something from every book in the Bible, that hasn't happened yet.

Some are very long and some very short. I don't usually like to memorize isolated verses.

Scripture Memory List :

Old Testament

1. Books of OT
2. Gen. 1: 1-5
3. Ex 20: 1-7
4. Duet. 6: 4-9
5. Duet. 28: 1-17
6. Ruth 1:16 & 17
7. I Sam 16: 6&7
8. I Chron. 4: 9,10
9. Psalms 1
10. Psalms 8
11. Psalms 15
12. Psalms 19
13. Psalms 20
14. Psalms 23
15. Psalms 24
16. Psalms 42
17. Psalms 100
18. Psalms 104
19. Psalms 121
20. Psalms 127
21. Psalms 128
22. Psalms 139
23. Psalms 150
24. Proverbs 4: 20-27
25. Proverbs 20:11
26. Is 9:6
27. Is 11:1,2
28. Is. 40: 28-31
29. Is 53: 1-6
30. Jeremiah 9: 23,24
31. Daniel 1: 17
32. Micah 6: 8
33. Hab. 3:17-19
34. 12 Tribes of Israel
35. The List of Judges

New Testament

1. Books of NT
2. Lord's Prayer
3. 12 Apostles
4. Matt.5: 3-16
5. Matt. 6: 19-34
6. Matt 11: 28-30
7. Matt. 16: 24-28
8. Luke 2: 1-21
9. John 1: 1-14
10. John 6: 47-51
11. John 14: 1-7
12. John 14: 21
13. Romans 6
14. I Cor. 13
15. II Cor. 4: 16-18
16. II Cor. 10:5
17. Eph. 6: 10-18
18. Phil. 4: 4-8
19. Col. 3
20. I Thess. 4: 13-18
21. II Tim. 2:15
22. Hebrews 11: 1-6
23. Hebrews 12: 1-7
24. I John 4: 1-11
25. III John 1: 4
26. Jude 1: 20-25
27. Rev. 3: 20
28. Rev. 21: 1-8

Newer Memory :
Psalm 33
Psalm 91
Psalm 27:1-7
I Peter 5:5-11

Family Poetry List

This is not all the poetry the children have memorized over the years, just all that we did as a group. Since I have been doing this for at least 15 years, some of the children have only reviewed these poems and not actually learned them. Andrew hardly remembers any of them but at least he hears them frequently. I am at the stage in life where I need to go back and redo with the younger children what I already did with the older ones but I am hesitating because it is too much fun to learn new things. Almost all of our read-alouds these days are books I have already read-aloud but just can't bear for the younger children to miss. Thankfully, as you know, a good book can be reread many times without boring the reader. I also am thinking of revising my review schedule. Instead of reviewing a poem or verse one time, I am thinking of reviewing it 3 days in a row before moving on. This will slow us up considerably but we might have better results.

Warning: If you choose to memorize a long poem like Paul Revere's Ride, your mind will never forget it and if ever, in passing, you say a line from that poem your brain will immediately insist on reciting the whole poem back to you. You will not be able to turn the poem off, especially if you are just getting ready to go to bed.

Beware of Quoting Poetry

Poetry for Review


1. Mercy Shakespeare
2. Hamlet's Soliloquy Shakespeare
3. History Poem
4. Nobility Alice Cary
5. Solitude Ella Wheeler
6. Marc Antony's Speech Shakespeare
7. Awaken Tribble
8. The Fool's Prayer Edward Sill
9. Sonnet On His Blindness Milton
10. Four Things Von Dyke
11. To A Mouse Burns
12. The Road Not Taken Frost
13. The Pasture Frost
14. The Village Blacksmith Longfellow
15. Paul Revere's Ride Longfellow
16. Requiem RL Stevenson
17. Bed in Summer RLS
18. Autumn Fires RLS
19. The Statue of Liberty Lazurus
20. The Boy We Want ( Book of Virtues Pg. 196.)
21. The Creation Cecil F. Alexander
22. Obedience To Parents Watts
23. The Sluggard Watts
24. Against Mischief Watts
25. Love Between Brothers and Sisters Watts
26. Windy Nights RLS
27. Who Has Seen the Wind Christina Rossetti
28. White Sheep Rossetti
29. The Gift Rossetti
30. Keep a' Goin' Stanton
31. Be Strong Babcock
32. Trees Kilmer
33. How Did You Die? Cooke
34. Opportunity Sills
35. Casey At The Bat Thayer
36. Pussywillow Brown
37. Sail on Miller
38. If Kipling
39. Over The River Childs
40. Weathers Hardy
41. The Lamb Blake
42. Little Things Carey
43. The Charge of the Light Brigade Tenn
44. The Arrow and The Song Tenn.
45. Crossing The Bar Tenn.
46. The First Thanksgiving
47. Pretty Good Osgood
48. Mist and All Willson
49. Mr. Meant-to (Book of Virtues)
50. November Coatsworth
51. Out in The Fields Browning
52. Lullaby of an Infant Chief Scott
53. My Daily Creed
54. Courtesy for Church
55. In Flander's Field
56. Stopping By The Woods on a Snowy Evening Frost
57. Whole duty of Children RLS
58. Weather the Weather anonymous
59. The Modern Baby
60. The Destruction of Sennacharib by Byron
61. A Little Brother Follows Me
62. Breathes by Sir Walter Scott
63. King Alfred’s War Song
64. Recessional by Kipling
65. All The World’s a Stage Shakespeare
66. Ozymandias Shelley
67. To Be a Pilgrim Bunyan
68. St Crispin’s Day Speech by Henry V William Shakespeare
69. I Am the Very Model of a Modern Major General by Gilbert & Sullivan
70. Horatius at the Bridge Macaulay
71. The Second Coming by William Butler Yeats
72. Where the Boats Go by RL Stevenson
73. The Lake Isle of Innisfree WBY
74 Two music passages from The Merchant of Venice :
"How sweet the moonlight sleeps upon this bank..."
and "The man that hath no music in himself...."
75. From Love's Labour's Lost "When Icicles Hang..."
76. From Cymbeline "Fear no more..."
77. Sea Fever by John Masefield
78. Sonnet #29 "When in disgrace..."

Family Hymn List

Our Family Hymns

Table of Contents:
1. A Mighty Fortress
2. Alas! And Did My Savior Bleed
3. All Creatures of Our God and King
4. All Glory, Laud and Honor
5. All Hail the Power of Jesus Name
6. Amazing Grace
7. America the Beautiful
8. And Can it Be
9. As The Deer
10. Be Still My Soul
11. Be Thou My Vision
12. Beneath the Cross
13. Blessed Assurance
14. Blessed Jesus At Thy Word
15. Boundless Salvation
16. Brethren We Have met to Worship
17. Bringing In The Sheaves
18. Brother's Keeper
19. Christ The Lord is Risen Today
20. Come Thou Fount
21. Come Ye Thankful People Come
22. Coram Deo
23. Count Your Blessing
24. Crown Him With Many Crowns
25. Dwelling in Beulah Land
26. Face to Face
27. Fairest Lord Jesus
28. Faithful Men
29. For A Thousand Tongues To Sing
30. Glorious Is Thy Name
31. God Leads Us Along
32. God Our Help in Ages Past
33. Great is Thy Faithfulness
34. Hallelujah What a Savior
35. Higher Ground
36. Himself
37. His Sheep Am I
38. How Firm a Foundation
39. Immortal, Invisible
40. In the Sweet By and By
41. It Is Well With My Soul
42. Jesus Shall Reign
43. Joyful, Joyful
44. Just As I Am
45. Lead On O King eternal
46. Leaning on The Everlasting Arms
47. Low in The Grave He Lay
48. Marching to Zion
49. May The Mind Of Christ My Savior
50. May The Mind of Christ My Savior
51. More About Jesus
52. My Anchor Holds
53. My Country Tis of Thee
54. My Hope is Built
55. My Jesus I Love Thee
56. Near The Cross
57. Nearer My God to Thee
58. Now Thank We All Our God
59. Onward Christian Soldiers
60. Our God Reigns
61. Pass Me Not
62. Praise God For the Body
63. Praise Him, Praise Him
64. Rejoice The Lord is King
65. Rock of Ages
66. Sacred Head
67. Savior Like a Shepherd Lead us
68. Softly and Tenderly
69. Soldiers of Christ Arise
70. Sound the Battle Cry
71. Spirit Of God Descend Upon My Heart
72. Springs of Living Water
73. That Will be Glory
74. The Church's One Foundation
75. (O)The Deep, Deep Love of Jesus
76. The Star-Spangled Banner
77. There's Power in the Blood
78. These Things are True
79. To God Be The Glory
80. Trust and Obey
81. Unbounded Grace
82. We Gather Together
83. What a Friend We Have in Jesus
84. When I Survey
85. Whiter Than Snow
86. Wonderful Grace of Jesus
87. Worship the King
88. I Sing The Mighty Power of God
89. Thine Is the Glory
90. Gloria Patri
91. O God Beyond All Praising
92. From All That Dwell Beneath the Skies (Tune: All Creatures)
93. Psalm 46C
94. Psalm 148
95. Beneath the Blood Stained Lintel
96. Eternal Father Strong to Save (Navy Hymn)
97. Great Is the Lord Our God ( Tune: Soldiers of Christ Arise)
98. Psalm 98
99. I Love Thy Kingdom, Lord.
100. O Thou in Whose Presence
101. Let Us With a Gladsome Mind
102. Psalm 22
103. More Secure Is No One Ever
104. Psalm 119 X
105. More Secure is No One Ever
106. Tender Mercies
107. Arise, Arise
108. In Christ Alone
109. Sing to Jesus
110. St Patrick's Breastplate
111. Non Nobis Domine
112. Isaiah 43
113. You Are Holy (Prince of Peace)
114. The Basin and The Towel
115. Jesus' Name
116. Blessed Be Your Name
117. In the Shadow of the Glorious Cross
118. Before the Throne
119. My Chain are Gone

I have four binders with the hymns in this order. For a family project alphabetic ordering is the easiest way to find a hymn. For years we would get to a hymn and have to remember which hymn book we had learned it out of. We had Christian and Missionary Alliance hymnbooks, Baptist, The Trinity Hymnal, and Psalters, etc. It was very confusing. One summer I printed out all the hymns either directly from the hymnbook we owned or from the Cyberhymnal. We then made 4 notebooks, some are in page protectors and others aren't. After this year I will try and get all four hymnals redone so that every page is in a page protector. I also need bigger notebooks now. Since we originally made the notebooks we have added 17 hymns. You can see where our original hymns stop at (O) Worship the King.

You can also see how our taste has changed over the years. I think the first hymn we learned this way was Blessed Assurance. I remember going to church one Wednesday night and hearing our pastor's children singing that without the hymnbook, I went home and added hymns to our morning meeting. I think Timothy was 6. Some of these songs I don't even like anymore but some will never grow old.

One of our family favorites is My Anchor Holds, but we have found not many people know it.

Let me repeat: We are terrible singers, not counting my dh. We rarely sing in public anymore although Tim used to sing with the kids at churches when they were little. They did a pretty awesome Judy Rogers' Listen My Son.

I tried to talk the children into singing Coram Deo at the Reformation Party the other night but after one practice I conceded that we sounded awful. Tim actually left the room in the middle of our practice.

Then during the Reformation Day skits and stuff, poor little Andrew turned to me with fear in his eyes and said, "We aren't doing the Modern Major General, are we?" We all got a kick out of that.

This Morning Time

This is a detailed (read boring) account for those with a need to know. I am sorry to post so much in one day but this one is really for the new homeschooling moms. This post is really the companion to the January MT post below.

First of all I got up later than usual. For some reason I have failed to wake up at my usual 6:30am the last couple of days. That did not stop the children from getting up and beginning their school lists. Finally around 10:00am I called everyone to come to our Morning Meeting.

I began by telling the children about a new idea I had. When I have an extra odd job I am going to look around the house, count the items left about, find who has left out the most and give the job to that person. It won't work but it really does sound like a good idea.
Then my dh came in and discussed a few logistical things with the children. The boys give him 30 minutes a day in the yard or on projects. We almost always start the Morning Meeting with family logistics. Even on non-school days we have a MM.

Time to take prayer requests. This morning we focused on Nicholas since he has been sick. Usually we all pray but this morning James (not a student) needed something so I just prayed.

We began saying the books of the OT and the phone rang. The dh, now running errands had a question. The kids went on without me.
Christopher read Eph 6:10-18, Nathaniel read Psalm 100.

Because this is our first week to relearn A Mighty Fortress we only sang one verse. We will add a verse every week. It is the first hymn in our family hymnal.
Then we sang Psalm 148 changing keys with each verse.:)

I got out the Bitesize Theology
book and read 2 short paragraph's titled God is Holy. This led to a discussion on whether a 4 point Calvinist ( no L), isn't really a 3 point Calvinist (no U) or not a Calvinist at all. I didn't bring up the topic but we followed through with it anyway. I won't tell you what we concluded lest I hurt your feelings.

At this time I finish up the things the older boys need to stay for. We haven't started a new Shakespeare yet so I just read a couple pages in The Ballad of the White Horse and we discussed some of the allusionary language. ( Maybe I made that word up)

Big boys departed. They don't go too far away though and frequently shout in their answers to questions I ask the younger children.

Andrew recited Who Has Seen the Wind and Alex begged to do White Sheep, White Sheep on a Blue Hill.
Emily recited The Creation and Benjamin The Charge of the Light Brigade. I had to excuse myself for a few seconds while they recited. They must have them completly memorized by next Friday. I am doing things a little differently in this area than I used to because the younger children did not have some of the older poems memorized and they were going to grow up missing some very good poetry.

I reviewed the poem The Whole Duty of Children by Robert Louis Stevenson and discussed it at length with Alex who told me he doesn't always say what's true. He said that James had just told him that if you crossed your fingers it was still lying. He was distressed. Apparently he had been using the crossing the fingers ploy frequently.

Emily read the Declaration of Independence through the first "he has..." This is a wonderful piece of prose and worth memorizing for its supreme use of argument and language.

I recited The Preamble to the Constitution.

Then I read Question 35-37 of the Civics lesson (see January MT post). What is the Bill of Rights? What is the Capital of your State? On question 37: Who is your Governor? Andrew answered George Bush. Alex answered John Quincy Adams and Benjamin and Emily swore they knew the answer after I told them.

I got out the Book of Life and we read about David's jaunt living with the Philistines. This is basically a KJV Bible with notes and pictures.

Then I had to take a break. I had not eaten breakfast and it was after 11:00am. I told everyone to do something else until after I had eaten.

I returned nourished and ready to read.
I read 2 pages of Plutarch's Antony. In this particular section we ended with Antony decimating his own troops for failure to keep watch on a fortification. We learned that decimation meant killing 1 out of every 10 soldiers. I never knew that, did you? The remaining soldiers had to eat corn and barley instead of wheat. We argued over whether this was a wise way to deal with your own army. Finally, we had to move on without agreeing.

Next up was English Literature for Boys and Girls. I read about Shakespeare's final years living in Stratford. Andrew was the only one to remember that Shakespeare had died in April.

Moving on to The Story of the Middle Ages we read about the towns and villages of medieval times and discussed the lack of freedoms and fuedal lordships.

Finally we got to The Princess and Curdie. My dh came in to listen (obviously home from running errands) and we read 2 chapters.

As MT ended we began our Latin lesson (Latin for Beginners: I love it!) and finished up in time for lunch. During lunch we listened to Minstrel Boy. Andrew had put on our Schumann files earlier in the morning. Hopefully we can have Ambleside Time after Alex's phonics this afternoon.

The Composite Homeschool Mom

Every time I write a Morning Time post I get lots of email and many questions. I don't mind that at all but behind those emails is usually the assumption that I am someone who is doing it ALL. This post isn't so much a disclaimer about myself as it is a disclaimer that anyone is doing it ALL.

I have met enough homeschool super-moms to know that no one is doing it all. So many times when we are reading about other families, our imaginations make up all sorts of details that don't belong in the real picture. I have said this before but we imagine someone having all their own priorities which we read about and all of our own priorities. It takes a little bit of discipline when reading through blogs not to panic. Calm down everyone. I promise no one is doing it all and if she is she is not a fun person to be around. And I have seen those types too. They get more done than the rest of us but they leave a trail of destruction.

The very first year I started homeschooling I implemented Morning Time accidentally. It was just an organic development from my reading of Charlotte Mason. That is why it has such a goofy name. It just developed into that. Later as I continued to read homeschooling books and more and more choices loomed at the curriculum fair, I tried to DO what other people were doing but I could never find time to do what other people were suggesting and what I was already doing. Hence over and over again I had to make a decision: Drop MT or drop the other thing? I consistently chose to drop the other things. Over the years I have added things to our MT that fit naturally into the picture and that has made our time more productive. I learned to make things easier and run smoother. In the end I erred on the side of what worked for us and now I have my grown boys telling me that MT is what was best about their education. They always encourage me to faithfully continue with the little ones.

All this is one reason I enjoyed the Circe conference so much. It was an affirmation that I had made the right choice and it didn't require me to add to what I was already doing.

If you are a driven mom who is pushing her children so that they are ragged and worn out please don't add what I am doing to your already full day. If you see something in what I am doing that strikes a chord in your heart and will bring peace and lasting fruit to your homelife then by all means take my ideas.