I’ve been doing some cursory curriculum planning for the fall. It is pretty straightforward, at least for Violet: continue Singapore math, continue Rosetta Stone Chinese, start co-op science and art, hopefully continue Finding God through parish faith formation program, continue with the (flawed! I know!) Story of the World for history (supplemented with lots of Horrible Histories).
What’s new is that I need a very basic Spanish curriculum that I can use with both girls and myself, and something to help Violet develop her skills in reading critically and writing more fluently. (That is, writing more fluently when someone else is giving the framework.)
I have been looking at joining Enchanted Learning. It has a lot of materials that I think Victoria would enjoy for “preschool,” and it has a lot of printables for basic Spanish — foods, clothing, things in a house, etc.
Inspired by Angela and Melissa, we are also trying Bravewriter, the Arrow program for grades 3-6. I think it will be flexible enough to allow Violet to make the most of it. I was worried about the grade level being too easy, but after reviewing I’m quite sure that in enough areas it won’t be, and I felt that the stories for the next level up (7-9) would be a bit too mature for her. I’m hopeful that some read-aloud sections from Arrow books will also have appeal for Victoria. Anytime I can have both girls doing something together will be a real help for me!
I had been very curious about it, after reading about other homeschoolers using it, but I had been fairly content to let Violet run her own reading and writing education. This year I think a few gentle nudges are in order. Also, I was kind of sold by something I read from Julie Bogart, the Original Bravewriter, on her blog, talking about changing the name of her company:
The words “brave” and “free” combined with “writer” instantly showed me the deficits of “The Writing Compass.” The original name implied that what I’m about is writing, as though the materials and classes were sources of writing instruction. But the truth was and is, I care far more about writers. Writers need nurturing, permission to risk, empathy, support, guidance and praise. They need freedom and space. They need, in short, an advocate to support them as they take the risks of writing.
I found this idea so appealing — I would not be trying to get Violet to be more correct, more formal, less silly, all my natural instincts, which I think I had been rightly surpressing! Instead I would be step up my level of support for her as a young writer.
Our first book is Poppy, by Avi.