Monday, June 11, 2007

Summer School

Are you doing summer school? No, not your kids, you! I suppose I could call it "Teacher Inservice," or "Continuing Education." At some point, many homeschooling moms go "back to school" in one way or another, I suppose.

I've hit that point. I'm in" summer school!" I've got a pile of curriculum, and I can't simply pull it out in August and start school, going page by page through it with my eighth grader, seeing it for the first time myself. No, I've got to study. I knew this day would come, and here it is. Actually, I thought it would come later- like high school. The fact is, high school has come earlier! (Some of the courses she is doing for eighth grade, like many of her publically and privately schooled peers, will count as high school credits on her transcript.)

I realized this year (7th grade) that it was increasingly less helpful for her for me to blankly stare at the page or fumble around for answers when she had a question. I realized many times that it would be better for me to have somewhat of a more "working knowledge" of the material she was studying, so that when she hit a hitch I could answer her more quickly and efficiently. Up until now that "knowledge base" was easily accessible in my mind, either due to what I have studied or taught in the past or just what most "educated people" know. Now, it's pushing the limits of what is easily retrievable from my memory. I've got to stay ahead! For some, this less of a challenge than it is for me, I'm sure. I need to look ahead at her work for this year, not just for planning purposes, but for familiarizing myself with the material. (And it's okay! I know someone who taught was hired to teach a calculus course in a highly-sought-after school district near here last year, and guess what she studied all last summer? You guessed it!) So, it's certainly no more than what would be required of me as a public school teacher, at any rate, and it's at my own pace.

Here's what I'll be studying this summer:

  • Teaching Textbooks Algebra I (Yes, I need a refresher course in Algebra! And now it actually seems kind of fun. :)

  • Veritas Press Omnibus I, secondary reading list: Chosen By God (R.C. Sproul), Till We have Faces (C.S. Lewis), ( The Narnia Books are on the list, but I just read these last year with my son, so I won't reread them), Isaiah, Jeremiah, The Minor Prophets (We are not starting the primary reading list for Omnibus I until 9th grade, so I'll be reading through those books next schoolyear and summer)

Though I haven't worked out any sort of "schedule" I will be starting this week going through some of the material. Just this morning I watched the introduction to the logic course. I won't do it everyday, though I'll stick some of the reading in my bag for the poolside. I'm looking forward to it!


Sherri said...

I know that it is coming to this as well. Madison is going into the 6th grade, so it is still easy to wing it the night before...or morning of, but that is about to change. There is so much that, if you don't use it, you forget it. It's easy to refresh yourself on it, but still......
I will be spending the summer planning and scheduling, as always. I guess when I have to start studying on top of that, I won't have a break at all, will I?

Anne said...

Yep, I'm in summer school, too! I'm working through Henle Latin, beginning to read Omnibus II books (we start that Omnibus II in August), and working through Cothran's Material Logic.

We did Omnibus I last year, and sometimes I was only a day ahead of my children's reading, so this year I'm working hard to do better than that. I'm actually really enjoying the Latin work, and my family is laughing at me! ;-) I'm a geek!

Sherry said...

What a reminder...yes, I need to buckle down and start reading some things. I think I need to get a start on Omnibus I, even tho' my DS is just starting 5th grade in the fall. :-/

Christy said...

I'm glad that day is still far off for me. Althogh I admit, I do have to answer a lot of questions with "Let's go look that up!" even though we're just in preschool. Hopefully I'm not the only one who doesn't know the difference between a frog and a toad!


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