Thursday, March 14, 2013

I'm still here but things are changing!

I've been a bit absent from blog land for the past couple of months, just visiting from time to time as my time and moods allow:)

I've been through some serious 'curriculum' searching for Rebekah for her next academic year (year 4) which for us starts in April (as we don't follow the traditional school year).

I've had some health issues (ongoing and still working on getting answers) and so I've had to make life easier in terms of our homeschool curriculum.
I've loved the Ambleside Online curriculum but I've been finding it a little challenging in terms of my time and energy.
I find I need to research a lot before making changes to books as I don't want to short change Rebekah. I had already modified it a little to suit us but as I was looking ahead to their year 3, I found I just didn't like some of the books and would have had to swap out a few, changing/ adapting involving more effort and time on my part. I think I was starting to tire of all the "older" books too somewhat. Also, at this stage in my life I was looking for someone to 'tell me what to do' without having to research, research etc. So.....I'm going back to Living Books Curriculum!

I researched quite a few different curriculums and prayed a lot and I just couldn't get past LBC. We did enjoy the two years we did with them for Rebekah when we first started out. As I looked through their booklists and teachers manual samples, it brought back memories of some of the fun books we read and all the 'extra activities' they suggest, I realised that a few things were falling through the cracks for us including map work for geography, and a lot of the other hands on activities to add to our learning that don't come naturally to me! I'm sure I'll be changing some and adapting it to suit us but atleast I have a general guide for the year ahead that I pick up each week and know what to do! LBC is also rich in good books and utilises a lot of the classics like Ambleside Online but they also utilise a lot of newer books. I like exposing Rebekah to more modern well written books and being not a literary brain myself I have to search and trawl through book lists and blogs to expose her to these. LBC saves me a lot of time and effort with this!

I've continued to moderate our local homeschool group and also am very involved on a weekly basis with some families that have started recently homeschooling from our church, running the science class in this group. So it's a co-op style group and we're doing Apologia's Astrononomy book this year. I must say we're enjoying and appreciating the dynamics that comes with learning in a group for Rebekah (being an only child).

So, I've been busy and continued to stay productive with life in general (despite my health challenges and this is purely due to the grace of God and an amazing and supportive husband) but just not in blog land! :) I'm really really sorry to all my faithful blog friends out there, I've tried to visit as much as I've been able to but I have not been as active as I have in the past. I'm not sure how and when this will change but this is where we are at for now:) I'll continue to blog and visit you all as and when I can as I've missed my peeks into your lives and the interaction, sharing and friendship that come along with that:)

p.s. if you'd like to be friends on Facebook, please email me from my profile page and I'd love to keep in touch with you through FB :)

21 comments:

Renelle said...

We are slowly introducing more CM ideas and am using quite a few AO and A Peaceful Day recommendations. This is the first year (with ds11) that I am going to introduce Shakespeare, Plutarch and Latin and see how we go it will be ever so gently. I have always taken a 'relaxed CM type approach but I can see it developing a bit more over the next couple of years.
I'm with you, it has to work for you the mumma as well as for our kiddo's.
I really like LBC, I just wish there were an Australianised version. Hopefully that will happen one day. Blessings, Renelle

Jeanne said...

It is great that you have found something that works for you. Stay well and happy, my friend.

Beloved's Bride said...

I hope you are doing well. I am sorry for your health challenges. I will remember to pray for you.

LBC has such a great reading list. I pull from it often for books to read as well. (Actually, I pull books from all sorts of sites. I have found that 75 percent of them overlap!) Happy Reading!

Glad to hear she is having fun in Astronomy!

Hugs to you and Rebekah.

Joyfulmum said...

Thanks Carmen! I have SO missed you in blog land! I always love reading your blog and feeling part of your lovely big family:)

Sarah said...

Rosemary, it is great that you have found what truly works for you & Rebekah, that really is so important. We will continually praying for your health.

Joyfulmum said...

Thanks heaps Sarah! I really appreciate it:)

Ruby said...

You sound as though you have hit on the right path for you. What are your duties as moderator of your group? We have formalised our group a little this year. It was getting very large and at times out of control :-) I hope your health improves x

Ganeidaz Knot said...

I liked using living books as much as possible ~ but we liked lots of crafty activities & always did better with them. Sadly it is less acceptable as children get older but some remain that way. *sigh* yeah, I've got one. She is making an interesting teacher...

Eve | Inchworm Chronicles said...

Astronomy is such a vast and interesting subject. We've enjoyed delving into it, as well. There are some good Nova programs we found on PBS online. Best of luck to you and Rebekah in these changes!

Blessings,
Eve

probhita said...

Great to have you back in blogland! Sorry to hear about your health and hope you are doing better!

I totally hear you on the AO curriculum. This year was quite overwhelming for me with doing year 2 and year 5 simultaneously! Midway I took a leap of CM faith and decided to simplify. Did a lot of combining and so I am still doing a bit of AO and a bit of my own. I think AO can deviate a little from CM's philosophy in their zeal to cover it all. Keeping it simple and enjoyable - the gentle art of learning - I felt like I needed to get back there. It has been so much better since! We began Apologia Astronomy this year too and my kids really love it!

Joyfulmum said...

Ruby - as moderator, I organise park days and send out emails about that, also approving new members, answering emails about the group, approving emails that are sent to the group etc. we have over 100 on ur list but not all of them attend our park days regularly. We get about 15 families on a regular basis.
Ganeida, yes my dd is very similar to one of yours I think ;)
Eve- thank you. I hope to be able to visit your blog more often in the coming weeks.
Probitha- thanks! I'd love to see what changes you've made as well. Ao is very rigorous and I'd love to hear your thoughts on how it deviates from CM (if you have the time to blog about it :) )

Joyfulmum said...

Renelle, it seems blogger ate up my reply to your comment!!! Yes, I SO wish there was an australian version of LBC! All the best with AO for you this year!

Carol said...

Good to catch up on what you are doing, Rosemary. Trust your health issues get sorted out. The freedom of home education is that we can change things if we need to & one size doesn't fit all.

Lynnisha said...

Nice to have you back! I hope your health issues get sorted out. Praying for you!
Really love the freedom that comes with homeschooling. Tweaking things and yet having a well rounded CM education. Love reading your blog.

Beloved's Bride said...

Just popped into see if you gave a little update! I hope you are doing well. And, I hope you get to share with us some of those living books you are looking into! Hugs.

Joyfulmum said...

Thanks Carol, Lynnisha and Carmen for your lovely thoughts! Carmen, yes I haven't had a chance to do another post yet, hopefully soon :)

Joluise said...

After spending a week with my homeschooling cousin I can see how much work is involved and you should be very proud of yourself and what you have achieved thus far. I pray that your health problems are improving and I wish you and your family a blessed week.

Joyfulmum said...

Thanks so much Jo :)

Clara said...

Oh, I'm so sorry to hear about your health challenges, Rosemary. I know what it's like to have health issues while trying to keep up with everything else... Praying you are able to regain good health quickly.
And in the meantime, it's great you've been able to find a curriculum that you enjoy. I've been branching out into Sonlight this year - love the way that curriculum uses such a huge array of books across the various subjects. :)
Enjoy your new school year!

Joyfulmum said...

Thanks so much Clara :)
Sonlight is a great curriculum. Enjoy all those great books!
All the best for your year ahead too!

Multi-tasking Mama said...

Hi Rosemary, I am new to your blog but delighted to be coming across more homeschooling blogs from this side of the world.

Sorry to hear your health has been plauguing you. I can relate.

We too are working through Apolgia Astronomy and also Apologia Flying Creatures. Girl's are loving Astronomy but finding Flying Creatures a bit of a drag (me too I confess).