A stream of consciousness from a few Charlotte Mason homeschoolers in California.

Friday, November 6, 2015

AmblesideOnline's 2016 Conference - Save the Date!

Save the Date! 

Deep in the Heart of AO, AmblesideOnline's 2016 Conference, will be at the Lakeview Camp and Retreat Center in Waxahatchie, TX from Thursday, May 19 through Saturday, May 21. 

Nature Study Talk from Northwest CM Educators Conference 2015

Thanks to Kathy Wickward, Lisa Kaufman, Christine Wood, and all the other wonderful ladies over at Northwest CM Educators and CM West who invited me to speak on Charlotte Mason Nature Study in Seattle earlier this year and recorded the session so we can share it with all of you!

The audio is sketchy for the first couple of minutes and improves, there is also a brief Q&A that is hard to hear in the beginning so to get right to the talk it starts at 3:35.

To stay posted for next year's conference (which, rumor has it may be closer to home) head on over to Charlotte Mason West and enter your email there.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Northwest Charlotte Mason Educators Conference 2015

We just returned from the Northwest Charlotte Mason Educators Conference last night and I wanted to share some pictures here. I know not everyone is able to attend a conference and that was the case for me for years. This was the first year I have been able to attend any conference for many years of homeschooling.

View of Puget Sound from Dash Point

Shells of a mature and juvenile clam - these were spitting water here and there from their holes

Tiny mushroom

Banana slug on some kind of stinky cabbage plant.

More mushrooms!

The dining room at the conference

The beautiful table displays put together by Christine - her children gathered natural things for each table. Isn't it lovely?

There were two scheduled book discussions, one on the Living Page, and the other on this book written in 1903 discussing the "nature study movement" which resonates many CM's truths.

First nature walk group with the beautiful sound behind.

What someone believed was a sapsucker was making holes in this tree.

Someone identified this as a locust. It is so camouflaged, can you see it?

Nature walk through the forest

More fun things we saw on the walk

Tea time

The beautiful view

Nature journaling

Late night chats with neighbors :)

Glorious light through the forest greenery

More tiny mushrooms

Can you spot the spider?

Walking down to the sound on the closed storm damaged stairway - this is as close as we got

A beautiful flower

Catherine Levinson's interesting new book that asks a multitude of people from various walks of life what they thing the imagination is to delve deeper into their thoughts.

A view of the sound on takeoff

Flying by Mt. Ranier

More nature journaling... at 30,000 feet :)

Landing back home with the sunset and the blood moon on the drive home

Captain America picking me up at the airport.

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

A Nature Study Guide by W.S. Furneaux

In a previous post, inspired by the sheer spot-on-ness of what was written in W.S. Furneaux's A Nature Study Guide which I had just happily acquired, I made an outline of it hoping you could employ its truths. It's a rare old book mentioned by Charlotte Mason in her programmes to be used in Special Studies and for reference.  

  Well, now, thanks to AmblesideOnline, more specifically Phyllis Hunsucker who organized and set up the typing of it, and the lovely volunteers who have been typing a few pages each to help the cause, W.S. Furneaux's A Nature Study guide is available for you to read for yourself! Well, in part until the rest is completed.

The first three chapters contain the principles and methods of nature study prescribed by Furneaux and the rest of the book works through various studies by season. In the back of the book are sections on classification of animals, classification of plants, the school museum, aquaria, vivaria, the rearing of insects, the school garden, garden friends, garden foes, nature lantern slides, and nature note-books and diaries - all of which will hopefully become available soon.

Here is the link: http://amblesideonline.org/Furneaux.html

Monday, August 31, 2015

Scheduling Again

This is my messy morning schedule I scribbled out while I was at the beach Thursday. Cindy Rollins' talk at the AO At Home Conference in Indiana this summer about her precious moments with the kids in the mornings re-inspired me to look at my scheduling again. We're starting school Wednesday this week and spreading the first week over one and a half weeks so we're not rushed with the holiday and starting off in that mode. 

It's a two-week rotation. The kids are now in YR8, YR6, and YR2 and we have a 4yo preschooler who joins in the mix. I started by making one big list of all the things we'll be doing together, and then I jotted down approximately how long it will take for each - Poetry 10 minutes, Shakespeare 25 minutes, etc.

Once I had a list, I made up the schedule below of two weeks (Thursday is nature study so we don't gather.) Then I filled in the slots - some things are done daily, others once a week, others once every two weeks. My YR2er can play while we do things like Plutarch, but she'll be there overhearing it all since we're in a small space.

I'll pretty that up and print it for the kids and all of us will have a copy so it's predictable. The kids will also each have their own daily list of things to do - just like the one pictured in this post, but with much fewer things in the top section since those are now mostly being done in our morning schedule together. 

From there, I need to know what to do with each person for the rest of the day so I'll have a master schedule that looks like this one, but updated since the morning schedule will replace the 9am to 10:30am time slot. The rest of the day will look pretty similar with math, phonics, and readings with my younger two.

How about you? Has your schedule changed this year?