Sunday, August 01, 2010

Living the Good Life!

Another good week here!
Monday afternoon I met with the other moms in our homeschool co-op, and we hashed out what I think were the rest of our plans.  I'm sure there will be some kinks to work out, but I have very high hopes for our group this year.  Our music major mom will be teaching music stuff, and our art major mom will be teaching art on alternate weeks; there will be maps/geography and crafts every week; and our book list seems pretty good to me.  Katie will be doing IEW's Medieval History Based Writing Lessons in the group, which I think will be challenging for her, but that, along with Writing Tales, which we've already started, will give her plenty of writing practice.  I still haven't finalized the writing assignments for the older group, so far I have one persuasive and one expository paragraph; a short (one page-ish) report; a story; and two lessons (still to be chosen) from the same IEW book Katie is using.  This won't be enough writing for Travis, but I figure I'll round it out with some outlining, written narrations, and response papers.   Plus, I have The Grammar of Poetry that I want to use with him.  So much good stuff, so little time.  And I think that Travis may get more out of history when he is discussing it with other kids and a mom who is not me.  I spent all afternoon yesterday reformatting all the Tapestry of Grace Accountability and Thinking Questions for Unit One, leaving lots of space for detailed answers, so that he will be ready to discuss intelligently with the class.  It could happen.

Tuesday night I went with most of the moms in our group to a free writing instruction "open house" in Winston.  They were having a week long Writing Educator's Workshop at Wake Forest University, and they offered a free "sampler" to anyone who wanted to attend.  Andrew Pudewa, Andrew Kern, Adam Andrews, James Webster, and Lee Roddy spoke for about twenty minutes each.  It was really very inspiring.  I came home late, all excited and full of fresh enthusiasm.  But none of the speakers addressed how one handles the student who shows up at the school table like this...
I shook off my fantasies of Socratic discussions leading to thoughtful, well-reasoned essays, and returned to the reality that ours is often a school of the Performing arts.  With an emphasis on performance rather than art. 

Speaking of, the kids started on "Friends, Romans, Countrymen..." this week.  It is definitely a hit! 

Friday we had a picnic with friends at Stone Mountain for Travis's birthday party.  I know -- almost a month late.  It was a busy month, and we had promised that we'd have a party sometime in July, and we did.
His friends got together to give him the Sword of His Dreams.  Excalibur, Anduril, Dyrnwyn, look out!  Travis's Nerf sword has no equal.  Not only is it great for spontaneous battles with friends, and as the ultimate movie prop, but it also comes in handy for demonstrating how a noble Roman acts when he misses a line in his "Friends, Romans" speech (a good suicide will distract your audience every time).

It was an absolutely gorgeous day.  After days and days of cloud and drizzle, we had blue skies, cool breezes, and not a hint of rain.  The kids ate and ran around and the grown-ups ate and talked, and everything was lovely.  After a while, we went to Widow Falls so the kids could swim and slide.

No one fell hard and broke anything, and all had a good time.  Not perfect, of course.  The boys splashed too hard and the girls (some of them) shrieked, but no one stayed mad.  It really was a beautiful day.

And finally, today at church a nice thing happened.  Last Sunday night we were up at church for a dinner and someone said something very hurtful to me.  I tried to let it go, but this morning I really didn't feel like going to church.  I was immediately rewarded for going, though, as the Bible Study (we are studying the Beatitudes) was exceptionally good.  And then, on the way downstairs to coffee hour, the woman who had made the unkind comment told me that she had specially brought a couple things for the coffee because she thought my kids would like them.  She went out of her way to be friendly and kind, both to me and Ed, and to the kids.  I don't handle conflict or criticism very well, and it felt so wonderful to be back on friendly terms with all the members of our church family!

1 comment:

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