Friday, August 17, 2012

One Week Down

Can you believe I am blogging again?  I just can't stop.  For some reason, I have all these thoughts running around in my head now that school has started back, and I must get them down on paper.  I don't's weird.

Anyway, I just wanted to quickly reflect on school now that the first week is behind us.

Overall, things are definitely going well.  Ada continues to be very excited about all aspects of school, and she keeps asking when we are going back to CC.  Her favorite part of our day at home is when we do math, mainly because Saxon has provided lots of fun "props" and crafts and things that keep her interested.  Plus, it's been really easy so far, where as reading and writing require a little more thought on her part.  Today was a little bit stressful (that word that I am trying to eliminate from my vocabulary ;) ) because John wanted in on the action, which was distracting Ada, but the only way to distract John from us was to turn on the television, which would also distract Ada.  It was one giant distraction, and I felt very frazzled.  But we got through it, and I'll be honest, we finished school with Dora in the background.  I don't know what was different about today.  The other days this week, John was satisfied playing cars or blocks, but not today.  Today he either wanted to play with Ada or he wanted cartoons, and I didn't handle it very well.  My frustration spilled out all over both children.  Bless their hearts. 

Ada is much more excited about Classical Conversations this year, which is encouraging to me.  I am excited about CC this year because this is Cycle 1, which means we are starting at the beginning with History.  One of CC's "mottos," "sayings," I don't know what term I am looking for, but something I have heard a lot from CC, is that the goal is to redeem the education of two generations--the parents and the children (because not many people our age were educated classically, though some were).  This will certainly be true for me.  Until now, much of the history that I do know--American and World--is just sort of swimming around in my brain with no where to land.  I do have a better picture of American History since I taught American Literature, and you just can't teach literature without discussing the historical context, so I can do a rough timeline in my head, but this year, as we literally look at the world map and start at the beginning--with the Fertile Crescent--and we watch history unfold from there, I am beyond fascinated.  So much is starting to make sense for me--especially as we begin to line up biblical history with world history.  And the most exciting part is that Ada is right there with me.  This week she has learned to look at a world map and pick out Sumer, Mesopotamia, and the Tigris and Euphrates River.  And, thank you The Story of the World: Volume I, she also understands why things began there--because of the water from the rivers.  As we learn that geography, we are also memorizing a timeline--beginning with Creation and the Fall--so the facts begin to line up in our heads.  We call these pegs on which to hang things.  So that later, as a teenager, when Ada really begins to process and discuss and form opinions about these things, the facts are already there.  Our brains can't do both at once--memorize the facts and analyze and process the information--and right now her brain is prime for memorizing.  Are you following me?  I get fired up about this stuff because it just makes so much sense to me.  I am a BIG believer in classical education--in case you hadn't noticed ;)  I just so want my children to be thinkers.  To be able to logically look at information and form opinions and participate in the big conversations of their generation, and I pray they will do that from a biblical perspective--Lord willing.  I often feel lost in many of the political issues that are happening around us today.  I have opinions, yes, but I am easily persuaded because I lack the ability to notice fallacies in arguments from both sides.  My goal for Ada and John? to have the tools needed to logically and persuasively argue truth.  To be able to look at the culture they live in and easily discern truth.  And the starting point is here, in kindergarten, as I begin to provide Ada with the information she will need years from now.  For these facts to be as familiar to her as the ABC's, so that learning facts won't get in the way of really getting down to the meat of things...if that makes sense.  These years are merely stepping stones to the rhetorical phase of learning.  Okay, enough of that...all I wanted to say is that we are loving Classical Conversations ;)  But you can always count on me to be long winded.

And a few pictures from open house...a couple of weeks ago.  I forgot to get pictures on the actual first day of CC.

And a picture of the pictograph that Ada made today--an example of why math is her favorite part of school so far.  She got to use crayons, glue, and scissors.  For reading, she just looked at some black and white letters and sounded them out.  It didn't even compare.

p.s. I am still absolutely blown away by, Give Them Grace, I want to copy half of what I have read so far onto this blog, but I am guessing Elyze Fitzpatrick would rather you go buy the book.  So, do!!!  Go buy it!!!  I can't recommend it enough, and I am only in chapter two.  (or you can borrow mine when I am finished with it)

And one more thing, we are beach bound in the morning.  Excited doesn't even begin to describe this household!!

Oh, and thanks for all of the book recommendations--I think Perks of Being a Wallflower is next on my list, so that I will be ready for the movie, plus I already almost bought it, so hearing that it is really good is just the push I needed...I'll let y'all know what I think.


rhodes1 said...

Hearing you and Ann talk about classical education makes me a little jealous. It all sounds so fascinating! I want to do it. Have fun at the beach, and I can't wait to hear what you think of The Perks of Being a Wallflower.

Mary said...

I love all the excitement over there!! I am going to go buy Give Them Grace...I had planned to borrow it but it sounds like it's worthy of my free credits at amazon : ) (and maybe something I want to mark up and return to!) Let me know about Perks of eing a Wallflower, too. I have not heard of it but it sounds right up my alley ; )