In addition to our curriculum (more later) we have joined a Classical Conversations group. In a few words, this is a group which follows the classical model of the three stages of learning. Since my kids are in the grammar (or memorization) stage, there is a TON of memory work. Weekly memory topics include History sentences, English grammar, Latin grammar, Math, Science and Geography as well as Ephesians chapter 6 and the entire set (one hundred and so) of the Veritas Press timeline cards.
So Mondays are my day to experience the "getting kids out the door" feat. (Which I think I could do without) We eat quickly, get dressed (making sure nobody has holes in their pants or stains on their shirts)...lunches and snacks packed into three separate packs...Keys located (almost caused an uproar when I declared last week I didn't know where they were right before we had to leave...Max was ready to walk)...and off we go.
After leaving an excited Noah and a heartbroken Ollie in the (much appreciated) nursery, we assemble with the group for the opening group time. It is here that they sing, review the Bible verse and History timeline cards, have a family presentation, and make announcements. Finally, their squirmy bouncy bottoms are released to follow their tutor to the classrooms. Jake and Max head off to their separate classes and I follow one or the other to observe/assist with Lils on my hip.
The classes are dived up in about 30 minute segments and are packed with information. There is the review of last weeks grammar (memory work), followed by new grammar, a science experiment, an art lesson, and public speaking time. The tutors do an excellent job at holding the attention of their groups.
They then are released back into my care for lunch and "gym time." After that, they drag themselves
back to the car and I do my best to keep them awake until we get home.
As I have said, I take things one year at a time. For this year, it is perfect. For one thing, it fills in almost the exact "gaps" I jotted down at the end of last year (memorization, art and public speaking). For another thing...there are SO MANY large families there. It is so nice not to be met with wide eyes when people see us coming.
It's going to be a good year.
Here's a sample of what they do...their work from this week:
Tell me about William the Conqueror. After the church split into Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox, William the Conqueror defeated King Herold of England in 1066 and started feudalism.
What is a pronoun? A pronoun replaces a noun in order to avoid repetition.
Locate Spain, Italy, France, England and the Czech Republic on a map
Count by 3s and 4s
Latin Present Tense conjugation of Love: amo, amas, amat, amamus, amatis, amant
What are three types of consumers? Herbivores, Carnivores, omnivores
Timeline cards: Creation, Fall in the Garden, Cain and Able, The Flood, The Tower of Babel, Unification of upper and lower Egypt by Pharaoh Menes, The Old Kingdom in Egypt, The first intermediate period in Egypt, Minoan Culture, The Call of Abram, God's Covenant with Abraham, Hagar and Ishmael, Sodom and Gomorrah, The birth and sacrifice of Isaac, The Middle Kingdom in Egypt, Joseph as a slave. (8 added each week)
And...Ephesians 6:1-2: Children, obey your parents in the Lord for this is right. Honor your father and mother which is the first command with a promise.
I am incredibly thankful for this group