I’ve decided to keep this blog specific to nature study and travel and create a new blog about our Charlotte Mason homeschool. You can see it at www.learningwithcharlotte.wordpress.com.
03 Aug 2011 2 Comments
I tried to keep a BOOK OF CENTURIES unsuccessfully for many years. I made the process such a burden instead of the keen delight which Charlotte Mason spoke of. Part of my difficulty was that I’d never found a format that I really liked. So, I did what I normally do. I made my own. What began as a book for my own family’s use got tweaked a bit and is now available for purchase from my friends at Simply Charlotte Mason.
This was a labor of love that came about as I researched how Charlotte’s schools chronicled time. It is not meant to be a replicate of how they did it, but simply one possibility of how to keep a record of keen delight. I hope you enjoy it.
03 Aug 2011 1 Comment
Don’t you just love the flowers by the desk, they were a clearance find at Target and are silk, of course. In case you didn’t know, my thumb isn’t exactly GREEN.
I think we need some bird feeders in the front garden beds. Doesn’t that seem like a good plan?
You can just see a corner of our new fuzzy green and brown rug. I’ll have to take another picture that better illustrates just how wonderful this Target find is. The kids like just rolling around on it because it is so soft! It’s much lighter and prettier than the link shows.
Neatness is akin to order, but is not quite the same thing: it implies not only ‘a place for everything, and everything in its place,’ but everything in a suitable place, so as to produce a good effect; in fact, taste comes into play. (Charlotte Mason, Original Home Schooling Series, Vol. 1, p. 130).
Notice how the bookcases are now so pleasing to look at. I love the casual, but planned beauty of it.
- The magazine bins hold unsightly math curriculum, misc. journals and a variety of other items that aren’t so nice to have out in view all the time.
- Our current books are on the lower shelves while our upcoming books are on the upper left shelf. The wooden vases were gifts from Hubby from his trip to Israel a few years back.
- The middle shelf holds all of our reference books – dictionaries, thesaurus, science encyclopedia. That little cube is our Narration Cube, recently discussed on the SCM Forum. (My favorite online spot, btw.)
- The top center shelf has the Picturesque Tale of Progress series which I plan to begin using soon.
- The center left shelf is everything I need for our upcoming year of co-op – Shakespeare books and books for the Seasonal Adventures class I’m teaching for fours and fives.
- The top right shelf holds our drawing journals and the basket has our picture study albums. The binders hold info. for fine arts study and our Rapid Recall Math Fact program all preserved in sheet protectors to save $$$. The kids use dry erase markers to do them each day.
- You can even see our new trashcan in the corner. I know, who gets excited over a trash can, right? Well, I do, when it matches and HAS A LID to help keep Hoover out!
I am looking forward to really making good use of this space. We just let our praying mantis, Ripstick, go free and our skink didn’t make it, but I’m sure some critter from the outdoors will live here soon.
Our Brock Magiscope sitting atop our Nature Calendar, just waiting for new entries. Today we saw a pair of the largest Great Blue Herons fly up our creek. Time to write that memory down.
Now, I want hubby to make a long thin ledge for this wall to hold vintage looking prints, perhaps field guides or something along those lines. I would also like to have a large vinyl quote in the center of this wall, but I’m not sure what. Perhaps, Sursam Corda, or something fun, or inspiring, or . . . I’d love some ideas!
It’s your turn now, I’d love to see pictures of your homeschooling space.
22 May 2011 Leave a Comment
Again, I will get the pictures up soon as I can.
Today marked our last day to worship with brothers and sisters at Deliverance Baptist Church. What a blessing to join together once again. Hubby preached this morning on submission using Ephesians 5. I heard that the message was well received, though I wouldn’t know as I had to take Hoover out when Daddy began preaching. Hoover had been sitting in the front row with Mr. Douglas and Pastor Dave, but when he realized that Daddy was at the pulpit, he tried to wiggle out of Pastor Dave’s arms to join Daddy. Once brought back to me in the back row, let’s just say he was rather vocal about his unhappiness! First, he couldn’t have Daddy and second and perhaps worse, Pastor Dave was trying to give him to me. Hoover loves hanging out with all of the men, he wants to be a big boy!
After church we were fed another wonderful lunch by Ms. Donna – rice croquettes, bread fruit puffs, fried plantains, mutton, garlic shrimp, fresh pineapple and fresh juice. Donna is a wonder in the kitchen! After our lunch and visit, we headed to the Layou River where we went tubing with Wacky Rollers, whom we highly recommend. The group of young men who were our guides – Marlon, Lex, Lester and Jermaine – were great! We remembered Marlon from our tubing trip 5 years ago. They fitted everyone with life vests, helmets and paddles and then we set off. Hubby held Hoover and I had planned to hold Snugglebug, but she was too big and therefore got her own raft! She was terrific, never complained, cried or anything – I guess she’s getting big at 4. We had a blast on the rapids and the lazy parts of the river. Good thing our tubes had BOTTOMS since the river is quite shallow and you bump along in some places! This was another way to see parts of this amazingly beautiful island! I wish I had some firsthand photos to share, but my camera and water don’t like one another. This is a DO NOT MISS TRIP if you come to Dominica. It was a huge hit with all the kids. After we climbed out of the river, some kids were playing Cricket and Superstar got a chance to try to play, too. He had a good time trying and given some time, I’ve no doubt he would have caught on quite well. Snugglebug made a little friend to play tag with and Horsey Girl was enamored with horses there in the field.
Time to head home for showers and pancakes for dinner and a start on our packing.
22 May 2011 Leave a Comment
I’ll get the pictures up for this post when I can.
Sorry for the delay, but I’ve been too tired to post the past few evenings. Here’s our brief catch-up…
On Thursday we left for a drive around the south end of the island, seeing many villages along the winding, curving drive. Snugglebug threw up from the drive. We moved her from the back to the front and that helped some. We saw many beautiful views, beaches, rivers and villages. We went to Grand Bay and ate a nice little picnic at Cochrane, prepared by Ms. Donna – meat pies and fried plantains. We drove up to the Carib territory and purchased some lovely baskets that she had made. Later, we ate dinner w/ Pastor Dave and his wife – yummy Dominican soup with noodles, chicken, potatoes, tania, carrots and I’m not sure what else. It was delicious! Followed by homemade chocolate chip cookies.
Friday, we rounded up a barrel to ship things home in, to save on toting luggage! We went snorkeling at Scotts Head again. Even Snugglebug snorkeled and loved it! Everyone is amazed that she can swim, much less that Hoover can, too! Snugglebug just marveled at all of the beauty below the sea – brain coral, organ pipe coral, “pretty fishes”, too.
Saturday, we took a drive with Pastor Dave, Ms. May and little S. to the northside of the island to Portsmouth. We had plans to hike the Syndicate trail, but it rained all day and everything would have been quite muddy. We did enjoy the drive, however. We saw where Ross Medical School was located and ate lunch at a great little spot – Riverside International Cuisine. The kids ate chicken fingers and hamburgers, Hubby at pork chops and fried rice and I enjoyed a wonderful Chinese beef & pineapple dish over fried rice.
17 May 2011 Leave a Comment
While Hubby & Superstar were busy with the team the past few days, the girls, Hoover and I have enjoyed sticking close to home. Today, I managed to snap a few photos with my iPhone that turned out surprisingly well.
If anyone knows what some of these flowers are or an easy way to identify them, please comment and let me know. I want to learn!
I couldn’t get a photo with my phone, but we observed this small black bird, about the size of a Carolina Wren, make a hole in a ripe papaya at the top of the tree and literally eat his way into the hole. It was very cool!
This song is on my heart today as I pray for three friends, each suffering from different cancers and two others with chronic auto-immune diseases. Come soon, Lord Jesus!
Abide with Me by Henry Lyte
I do not know the traditional tune, but only the one our friend David S. wrote. He is a gifted man who has reset many traditional hymns to new tunes which he has written. I do not have it on my computer or I would share it with you here.
- Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide;
When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.
- Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
Change and decay in all around I see—
O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
- I need Thy presence every passing hour;
What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
- I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness;
Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
- Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies;
Heav’n’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.
Horsey Girl playing with Ticklish Ferns…
Tomorrow we plan to add many of the beautiful plants we’ve seen to our Nature Journals which have sadly remained untouched until now. I want the kids to touch and discover the textures and scents of all of these beautiful plants. I’m hopeful that Grandmommy can help us with the identification and labeling!
Until next time,
PS – I can’t believe that we have only one more week here. It has gone much too fast!
17 May 2011 Leave a Comment
Saturday, 5/14/11, Day 2 of Building -
It felt like a delayed golf tournament. The rain started when we started at 5:45AM. The good news is that it finally let up around 11AM. We were able to get all four walls up and the roof rafters. The team did a great job. We had several Dominicans working on the roof with me which was good because I am not particularly fond of walking across rafters 22 feet off the ground. We had our American team working on installing doors and windows. Superstar gathered wood, nails, hammers, tapes and mangoes. He had a great day. I let him play on my Iphone for an hour or so and he had 20 to 30 of the school children watching over his shoulder. I think he thought he was cool. We knocked off around 6PM and headed back to the church for a GREAT meal prepared by the ladies of the church.
Monday, 5/16/11, Day 3 of Building -
Today we finally finished, well almost. There is a bit of painting left for the Dominicans to finish. We built the room partition, the roof, and hung the remainder of the siding. It rained a little bit, but did not slow the team down. Installing the remainder of the doors and windows made the building go from a large wooden shed to a 2 room school house. I spoke to the principal and they currently serve over 90 children in 6 school rooms. While that seems like a good room to student ratio, the current rooms they have are about 10 by 10. So now think of 15 kids and desks, a teacher and desk, and the blackboard in a 10 by 10 room. The new building will house the 6th and 7th grades and each school room will be 24 by 16.
We wrapped up at around 5:45 and had another magnificent dinner at the church.