Wednesday, August 20, 2008

And I'm back

I finally got my computer home yesterday. I had no idea how much I would miss it! Who knew that I used it for so much? Thankfully they were able to save everything on it, but I will be backing up everything from now on.
In the meantime, school is going really well. One of my favorite parts so far has been all the reading we're doing. I've always read a lot to the kids, but it's usually been books that they choose - whatever they bring me, basically. But now that I've been planning out so many books to read as part of our curriculum, I'm really enjoying it even more. Our librarian's are so helpful. I can get online and request as many books as I want from our local library or any library in the state and they email me when I have a couple waiting at the desk. Which means I don't even have to go upstairs to get myself a book when I take the kids in. Now if they'd just install a drive through...
We're making every other Tuesday Library Day. Tuesday's are storytime and we used to go every week, but I'm really committed to staying home a few days a week. Levi is learning his way around the stacks. I made him a "laminated" (with clear packing tape) card listing the kinds of books he has to check out each week. I think I got this idea from The Well Trained Mind. I tried to keep the categories to a minimum for this year. He chooses one book from each category - social sciences (which I help him choose because there are a lot of books in this category that he's not ready for...Coping with a Gay Parent for example...sheesh), science and technology, arts and recreation, and literature. I, as always, have final veto power, but I'm trying to let him choose for himself as much as possible. For example, last week when he chose a book about Christmas (in August, y'all) I didn't say a word.
One book he picked out last week was really great, though. Thunderstorms by Nathaniel Tripp. Levi is fascinated (and terrified!) by thunderstorms so I thought knowing more about them might help. Children's books seem to focus on how kids feel about thunderstorms, though, and that seems to reinforce the idea that there is something to be afraid of. This book was wonderful. It's the story of a big thunderstorm passing over a farm. There are lots of scientific explanations about what's going on with the weather, but there's also a lot of story about farm and animal life. I also liked the way it shows neighbors helping one another and the art work is lovely. I'm a sucker for the artwork.
I've read some other great books lately so I'm planning on writing about some of those in the next few days. And I've got to get some of our homeschool plans up on here soon. But first it's time for Brenna's medicine...we all seem to have summer colds.

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