Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Charlotte Mason Education / Pregnancy Update

We are in the process of slowly switching over to a more Charlotte Mason approach to our little school. I've found we typically end up just reading books and dreading doing most of our workbook and traditional textbook work anyway. So I've been reading up on it a ton, looking at a thousand websites it seems like, but we've slowly started to get it figured out.

What I am doing to start, is adding in a day of nature study and switching from our traditional handwriting/penmanship curriculum to a copywork book. We are also taking out a few subjects that I have come to find basically pointless for us right now. We have already made the switch to a new math curriculum - which isn't Charlotte Mason per se, but is much different than a traditional textbook approach to the subject. And as we slowly start getting new materials trickling in, we will begin switching out those subjects one at a time with our new materials, until we have completely made the adjustment.

Although it took me quite a while to look into the method and decide what basic "outline" we wanted to follow, I can see that once the original "stuff" is all ironed out, its actually going to be much simpler to stay on target, on schedule, and just covering the material in general. Its already looking to be a lot less work on a regular basis than what we were doing previously, and it will be much more flexible with scheduling when unexpected sick or sanity days pop up.

There are a ton of online resources out there, but the most helpful and comprehensive I have found would be Ambleside and Simply Charlotte Mason. I prefer Simply Charlotte Mason, mostly because it is much less intensive reading I think, and for my reluctant reader and with a new baby on the way, looks much more doable. I especially like that many subjects are already laid out for you to do as a family, whereas Ambleside has a year by year approach. While I do prefer that "in my mind", I know that realistically it would not be feasible with the way our family dynamic is right now. Also, Simply Charlotte Mason website has many videos and free ebooks available to help you get started, and some items also available for purchase if you feel the need to add those into your lessons or would like the extra support those items have to offer. I myself am ordering a few things to help get us started!

Even still, we aren't following the scheduling completely - I doubt anyone fully does! Every family will have to adjust things. For example, we are not starting with ancient history. We've tried to do ancient history for years, and we end up just failing at it, haha. And now that Abby will be entering 4th grade, I really feel uncomfortable with her not having more knowledge of American history. So we will be doing basic American History for a year, and then jumping back into a more chronological approach to History following that. Although I may take a bit of time at some point to do a brief study of Texas history as well before we move back into the chronological world history. I have time to make that decision though! Also, I think this is all going to be much easier for Adam and Abby to keep up with when the baby is born.

Speaking of the baby - I go in next Tuesday for another appointment. I really love my OB, so I'm very happy with the decision we ended up making in regards to the prenatal care. I am still concerned about the hospital, but the further along I get in the pregnancy, the less important that really seems to be. I think the Lord is just really giving me some peace now with this pregnancy, as there is so much other stuff on our plate right now. I do worry sometimes, just because I haven't felt movement yet (I did very early with Abby and Will), even though I know that this would be very early to feel movement anyway! And my belly is growing by the minute it seems, so I know everything is just fine! BUT, anyway, on Tuesday I should be getting my ultrasound orders, and from past experience they can get me in for the ultrasound appointment within a matter of just a few days typically, so we should know by end of next week if we have a little boy or girl! Well, if we receive cooperation of course! We are having naming difficulties, and I know that once we know the gender, it will help us to focus in and eliminate some of our arguing! Haha! Any suggestions are welcome, cause we've got practically nothing we can agree on at this point. I've also decided not to share the names we decide on, because recently when discussing a name I liked very much with Adam's family, they were so critical and rude about it, I just decided I was done with that! I don't want to hear that stuff this pregnancy. Right now I'm so at peace and comfortable with the pregnancy, I don't want to let in added things like that which are just unnecessary and will end up upsetting this senstive pregnant woman!


  1. Oh, people are so forthcoming with their opinions about names before the baby is born! When it's a done deal they just smile and say "how lovely" or at worst, "how unusual!" We learned. Good call!

  2. I think your approach to homeschooling is excellent, and little changes (with a new baby one the way) are better...I have one avid reader and one reluctant reader. Both now have their OWN library cards, now. As of last week. And the reluctant reader happily checks out books on CD for herself. So eventually we'll get to it...