In building our dream classical homeschool, we have to start from ground zero. Last week we stopped homeschooling at all. The kids got a break and you were assigned to read an inspirational book on classical homeschooling.
Did you? Are you ready to start again?
If you need a longer break, take it. Also you can take two weeks instead of 1 if you need extra time to get a subject going to your satisfaction. We’re building slowly but surely. You know the story… the tortoise wins the race!
First we start with free reading.
Why reading? It’s the base of all further education. You can’t read the great books if you can’t read. You can’t follow instructions in the textbooks if you can’t read. You can’t even work a word problem without reading.
In my family, we returned to an hour of free reading chapter books. Not comic books, not anime books, not even audio books. Chapter books.
I’d let this slide over the years while I was on bed rest and chasing toddlers all over the house. It’s been bugging me though. So we started with an hour of free reading an approved chapter book for school. Approved is important. I have a scamp or two who’ll try to read a Calvin and Hobbes instead.
Did I mention my middle school and high school kids were dancing in the street? They each ran, grabbed a book they’d been putting off reading in favor of comics or anime, and read. It’s wonderful to see teenagers excited about school again.
My 5 year old and I simply kept up our appointed task of teaching her to read. My little girl wants to be reading by the end of summer. It’s a lofty and worth goal. So we’re doing a lesson of Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons every day, including weekends. If all goes well, she’ll be reading by fall!
My goal with the free reading is to keep the habit of free reading going even after we start literature. I want the kids to be reading assigned literature AND personal books every day.
Don’t make free reading difficult. Just assign the kids an hour to sit down and read quietly. If you’d like to introduce commonplace books or reading notebooks, you can do so this week. In that case, your kids will read for an hour and either copy a quote into their commonplace book or create a notebook page each week.
Personally I’m waiting until the week after math to add in the commonplace book or reading notebook. It gives me time to review The Well-Trained Mind and determine precisely what my preferences are.
- This week ~ either work on phonics with your children or have them read for an hour.
- Next week ~ we’ll discuss math!
What books are you and your kids reading this week?