Thursday, November 12, 2015

Catching up with Jessica

Today we're catching up with Jessica. She and her boys are working their way through our Early American History study. If you missed the first entries in her series, here they are: Part I and Part II. Today Jessica talks about how homeschooling through difficult times poses unique challenges and sometimes you just have to press through. We have structured our study guides to take these sorts of circumstances into account. We know as homeschoolers ourselves that life is unpredictable and everyone needs flexibility. So if it means stretching a six week term into eight weeks like Jessica did, our studies are easily adjusted. We also want your history studies to be a time of connection where you can take a break from all the pressures of school, curl up on the couch with your kids and get lost in great literature and story. 
Here's Jessica: 
homeschooling through hard times - we need to be faithful in our charge to educate our children and yet a thorough education is so much more than just open book learning.I can just hear this long, deep sigh emitting from my oldest when I look at this picture – and that is how I feel.
Term two has been rough. homeschooling through hard times - we need to be faithful in our charge to educate our children and yet a thorough education is so much more than just open book learning.
Outside circumstances have been unpredictable and tossed us to and fro on the waves of uncertainty and we have learned to cling to the rock that is higher than us and stronger than our problems.
So much in these past eight weeks have been miserable and just buckling down and getting through. Yes, eight weeks. Our six week term turned in to an eight week one as we just plowed through as we were able.
It’s the beauty and handicap of home education – the weight of it all is on you, and sometimes rest is required in order to handle it at all. So over the past eight weeks a bit of a lighter load was distributed and we focused on joy and good attitudes and thanking the Lord for His provisions and just breathing.
And things are looking much brighter as we head into term three and no one is worse for the wear for having taken things at a much slower pace. In fact, I would venture to say we are better off for it. sweet and delightful living history books and nature booksWe read some delightful books this term through our Beautiful Feet History curriculum. It is perfect timing as we head into the Thanksgiving season – we started with Pocahontas by Ingri and Edgar d’Aulaire. Can I convince you that these masterpieces are worth having in your collection?! The art work is beautiful and the stories are captivating. We are so enjoying reading through them and saturating ourselves in their beauty.
(See the blow dart gun in the above image? That is my life. Blow dart guns accompany many outdoor school adventures.)the story of Pocahontas
From Pocahontas we moved to Jamestown, New World Adventures by James E. Knight which was another rich story (not quite the same compelling illustrations!) But written as a mother recollecting her father’s adventures and journal entries in the New World it is detailed and intriguing. enrichment activity for learning about early American history - a game played by native americans
 {a game we played – one that is said to have been played by the Native Americans and taught to the Pilgrims – see how to play the bowl game here.}
And from there we went to Pilgrim Stories by Margaret Pumphrey – I had never heard of this book before and, to be honest, it didn’t look like an exciting book. But wow! I was so wrong. This collection of stories about the Pilgrim’s adventures is excellent and the conclusion of each chapter had my kids asking for more and left me with a deeper appreciation and understanding over what the Pilgrims endured.  It is a great book to read leading up to Thanksgiving, and one I am going to be including in our Thanksgiving basket for years to come.lots and lots of tea to get us through homeschool
The guidebook for Early American History walked us through thought provoking questions and enrichment activities – and I added a bit extra in the form of a lapbook on Jamestown just because they enjoy such activities.
outdoor homeschool fun
I am thankful for the Lord’s sweet provision and grace while homeschooling through hard times – we need to be faithful in our charge to educate our children and yet a thorough education is so much more than just open book learning. And the balance to be found can be hard. And maybe we leaned too much towards rest and taking things easy while homeschooling through hard times, but we can only do what we can do – and (I think!) we made it and things are looking up.

Thank you Jessica for sharing this part of your homeschooling journey with us! You can read her complete post here

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