Friday, July 19, 2013

School Plans Stuff

And what have I been up to this past week, you ask? If you'll recall, I had great intentions to Get All the Planning done for next school year. Well, I didn't, and neither did I get the refrigerator or my closet cleaned out. A friend called on Tuesday and asked what I was doing. I told her I was mopping. "Did you say mopping or moping?" she asked. That's the kind of confidence I inspire. My children abandon me, my faithful Brother printer gives up the ghost in peak printing season, the Tenth Doctor regenerates into a guy who wears a bowtie, and she suspects me of moping? Well, okay. I might have moped for a minute or two. But when she called I was mopping!

And, actually, I did get some planning done. Miles from all, but some.

Stealing an idea from an internet friend, I decided to set up a course called something like "Literature of Science" (or "History of Science" or "Science in Context." The jury is still out.) so that I can give Travis credit for all the extra science-y books I assign him. He'll read the books over all four high school years, but I think I'll show it on the transcript as something like "Literature of Science I" and "Literature of Science II" in 11th and 12th grades, at .5 credits each. I am told by those who know about such things that this is legitimate. And I've got a list! Subject to deletions and substitutions (some of them/many of them I don't actually have, and I'll at least skim them before I assign them, no matter what those reliable reviewers at Amazon say!), but I think it looks pretty good. At this point there are thirty-seven, but he's already read Uncle Tungsten and How to Lie with Statistics (which will go on the 9th grade list).  I've grouped them somewhat by history, but also mixed things up so that there is variety in subject and difficulty level each year. If you have thoughts about any here, please let me know!

9th Grade
Coming of Age in the Milky Way
Here's Looking at Euclid
The Dancing Universe
Evolution: The Story of Life on Earth
Wicked Plants
The Genie in the Bottle
The Beginnings of Western Science: The European Scientific Tradition
The Elements: A Visual Exploration of Every Known Atom in the Universe

10th Grade
The Genesis of Science
The Seashell on the Mountaintop
The Earth Moved: On the Remarkable Achievements of Earthworms
The Clockwork Universe
Brain Rules
The Invention of Air
Microbe Hunters
Napoleon's Buttons: How 17 Molecules Changed History

11th Grace
The Scientists
The Philosophical Breakfast Club
The Victorian Internet
On the Origin of Species
Why Evolution is True
The Ghost Map
Introducing Time
Bad Science

12th Grace
Chaos: Making a New Science
Knocking on Heaven's Door
"Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!"
The Disappearing Spoon: And Other True Tales...
Thinking, Fast and Slow
Silent Spring
Polio: An American Story
A Briefer History of Time
The Universe Within

It looks good to me now, anyway.

Last Saturday my fellow co-op moms came over and we finished planning for next year. Not much to do, really, but we did need to settle on the literature list for the younger group (6th & 7th graders). They gave in to me and added Gilgamesh and In Search of a Homeland, and I agreed to a couple that don't really grab me. I think it is tough to make a middle school level list of wonderful literature related to the ancient world, but ours isn't bad. The class will be alternating literature discussion with public speaking, so the literature list is not that long (I will supplement it for Katie, who is a keen reader when she's interested, though I am afraid that Hittite warriors and wall building Israelites won't do much to inspire her.). Here's the co-op list:
The Golden Goblet
Tales of Ancient Egypt
Wonders and Miracles
Twenty Jataka Tales
The Corn Grows Ripe
Black Ships Before Troy
The Wanderings of Odysseus
Hittite Warrior
Mystery of the Roman Ransom
Victory on the Walls
Archimedes and the Door of Science
In Search of a Homeland
Twice Freed
Ides of April
The Bronze Bow
The Eagle of the Ninth

Katie will also read Mara, Daughter of the Nile; Galen and the Gateway to Medicine; The Cat of Bubastes; and  Adventures of the Greek Heroes. And I'm sure I'll find more for her. Plus, of course, she's got the Tapestry history books, which will be a change for her, as we've previously done most of her history reading as read-alouds. I think she'll enjoy it. Now I just need to go dig for that pot of gold that pirates should have once buried in our back yard!

1 comment:

JSD said...

Loved this. Took me back in the day. I still love it but glad I don't have to do it anymore! :)