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Our Curriculum 2016-2017

Choosing a curriculum tailored to your child's needs and interests in one of the reasons I love homeschooling.  There is no other form of education that can offer an education based on the uniqueness of the individual.  I am continually amazed at the selection of products available to homeschool families. I am eternally grateful for the friends I have met in this "blogland" who have given their opinions, insight, advice and critique of many of the programs I have purchased.  

Here's to a wonderful year of learning!

Grace - 11th Grade: 
Math - complete Math U See Geometry (fall 2016)
Science - Biology 101 dvd series (fall 2016)
                 Chemistry 101 series (winter 2017)
                 Genetics lab through coop (spring 2017)
History - Notgrass Exploring America 1 (fall 2016) 
                Exploring America 2 (spring 2017) 
Including American Voices. Through coop.  Field trips include but are not limited to: Plimouth Plantation, Boston Freedom Trail, Sturbridge Village (all fall 2016)
Language Arts - The Hero's Journey (booklist includes The Tale of Despereaux, The Odyssey, Beowulf, Gulliver's Travels, Watership Down plus 4 books of her own selection) and final project
Philosophy 101 with language arts (Fahrenheit 451, Sophie's World, The Little Prince) - spring 2017
Piano - year 7
Keyboardist with youth group worship band
Ukelele for coop worship band
Music Theory 1
American Sign Language - year 4
Horse Back Riding - year 3
Trampoline Lessons - year 1
Photography 102: Beyond the Basics with professional photography teacher.  Multiple workshops at local camera shop. Participation in local camera club. 
* Notable event - winner of People's Choice Award Milford Arts Commission 
Art: drawing/painting fall 2016 - through coop, Modern Calligraphy, winter 2017
Guitar 1 - through coop fall 2016, spring 2017
Driver's Education - 40 hours driving, 6 hour drug and alcohol class, 2 hour parent education class (.5 credit)

Lilah - 9th Grade
Math - Math U See pre-algebra
Language Arts
pre-credit (1.0) for One Year Adventure Novel 
Creative Writing Workshop taught by Gail Carson Levine (.5).  Fall 2016 -The Hero's Journey at coop with the same assigned booklist as Grace above.
Philosophy 101 with Language Arts (see above)
Science - Biology 101(fall 2016)
                 Chemistry 101 (winter 2017)
                Genetics lab through coop (spring 2017)
History - (.5) credit for Civil Rights Study 2015.  
She is also participating in history at coop - see history above.
French 1 - fall 2016, spring 2017
Horseback Riding - year 3
Cello year 2
Cellist in coop worship band
Photography 102 Beyond the Basics
Classroom Assistant (90 min a week) 4th grade student ministries at Black Rock Church.

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Defending Homeschooling

Yesterday I was called to defend my homeschooling to someone who did not know me well and does not understand the concept of homeschooling well.  Some of the questions that were asked included:

How do I grade?How do I know they are on track?How do I teach what I do not know?How do I have patience?How will they go to college?
These are fairly typical questions and I should have been able to answer them with ease and confidence but I sensed judgment and it shook me a bit.  After all these years, I thought I was beyond being shaken up by questions, especially when asked respectfully.  To be fair, the questioner has a very traditional outlook on education and has two children younger than mine, who already know which Ivy League schools they wish to attend.

So how did I respond?

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Art Journaling: Quotes

If you saw our group’s art journal pages on display, I wonder if you would be able to guess how old the artists are.

Their work is mature beyond their years.  

I wonder why this is...Is it talent?  It is interest?  Is it passion?  
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Shelling in Coastal Connecticut, Rhode Island

It is a wise father that knows his own child. - William Shakespeare

Our family has always embraced each other’s interests.  We almost take them on as our own.  I have attended two weather conferences with Grace.  I have run a baking camp for Lilah.  It is truly wonderful when we discover an interest that we all share. For us, this interest is shelling.  
You can’t shell as home.  After a long and at times difficult week, Greg and I decided to skip our normal Saturday routine of food shopping, running errands and having a nice family dinner at home, in favor of exploring beaches in Connecticut and Rhode Island.  We threw food into a cooler, grabbed water bottles, our microscope, shelling bags (mesh laundry bags), and headed north.
Our first stop was Rocky Neck State Park.  We have mixed feelings about this beach.  We love the soft white sand and the glacier formations to climb on and the contrast of colors created by the water, the sand and the rock, but we disliked the Amtrack trains that…