a humble place https://ahumbleplace.com Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing. Camille Pissarro Wed, 23 Sep 2020 13:44:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.5.1 https://ahumbleplace.com/uploads/2020/07/cropped-chick20trans-32x32.png a humble place https://ahumbleplace.com 32 32 Whether the Painters Chosen for Picture-Talk could Follow Each Other in a More Harmonious Sequence than at Present by Edith Frost https://ahumbleplace.com/painters-chosen-for-picture-talk/ https://ahumbleplace.com/painters-chosen-for-picture-talk/#respond Mon, 21 Sep 2020 23:37:16 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=69898 Earlier this year, I wrote a series on Charlotte Mason Picture Study, including why it’s important and how it looks for us and in those posts, I quoted several articles and talks from various Charlotte Mason-related media. In the first post, I linked to a talk given by Edith Frost that was published in L’Umile […]

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The Reading Lesson. John Dawson Watson. 1855.

Earlier this year, I wrote a series on Charlotte Mason Picture Study, including why it’s important and how it looks for us and in those posts, I quoted several articles and talks from various Charlotte Mason-related media. In the first post, I linked to a talk given by Edith Frost that was published in L’Umile Pianta in 1914. I have not found it posted anywhere else, so I decided to re-type it here for, hopefully, easier reference.

I’ve also done research to find out where this talk was given, but have only found references to a “Conference” of some kind (perhaps a PNEU conference?) that took place earlier that year and my lack of knowledge of Charlotte Mason’s world is very evident right now! I’m guessing it was some how related to Charlotte Mason’s teacher-training college, the House of Education, as the discussion at the end of this particular talk came to a conclusion about how to go forward with teaching picture study. If anyone can enlighten me on this, I’d be very thankful!

One of the things I found interesting about this talk was that it continued the debate I’ve seen in several places about whether or not students should attempt to reproduce the art at which they’re looking for picture study. The majority of the articles I’ve read as well as parts of Miss. Mason’s original volumes generally say that this should be reserved only for older students and only on a very basic level (“they are never copied lest an attempt to copy should lessen a child’s reverence for great work” vol 6 p 216). However, in this talk, Miss. Edith Frost stated that: “In order to know a picture we must study and narrate, and this narration takes the form of a drawing, which serves to fix the picture and its details firmly in our minds. No mere looking will fully unveil the inner meaning, we must learn the picture by heart, and hold it in our memory, that it may become a subject for contemplation and a joy; the more we ponder and discover, the greater will our love and reverence grow–and thus should it be with the children.” I found this to be very interesting, especially how she emphasizes that “no mere looking will fully unveil the inner meaning.” I’m not sure if this means only looking and not narrating, or both, but it’s a bold statement to make and I have to wonder if she felt this way about younger forms as well!

Also, her question of, “would it be better for them to know something of one master in each of six different schools of painting, or to know thoroughly two of the schools?” is one I think some home educators (in particular, those new to Charlotte Mason) have offered when seeing that picture study, over the course of one year, only covers three different artists not necessarily related to each other. I feel that this isn’t a problem because picture study, again, is about getting to know the art and not necessarily a short course in art history. As to her question, “is there nothing to be said of the delightful uncertainty of not knowing who comes next?” the answer is a resounding No!! I have found that my students really enjoy this aspect of the beginning of each term – getting to find out who our next artist will be and to see their style. It’s been so interesting to hear them as they flip over that first piece and verbally compare it to pieces we’ve looked at in the past, even in the same year.

Reading about the “chart” or timeline of artists from Mary Innes’s book was also very interesting. I have not come across this suggestion in The Living Page or any other type of guide on keeping notebooks, timelines, or charts. I don’t know that it was ever something that was commonly used either in the P.U.S. or directly recommended by Miss. Mason herself despite the fact that those present for this talk agreed at the end that it could possibly be used for certain forms. My only concern with keeping a separate chart is that it, again, would make picture study more about art history or even the artists themselves rather than the pieces of art. I wonder if anyone has added artist information and/or the paintings they’ve student to their overall timeline charts or Books of Centuries?

Finally, there is some discussion about whether or not to include any biographical information on the artist when doing picture study. Miss. Mason even suggests this in A Philosophy of Education (“After a short story of the artist’s life and a few sympathetic words about his trees or his skies, his river-paths or his figures….” vol 6 p 214). I do usually like to give a little background on the artist we’re studying, but I don’t know that it’s absolutely necessary. I have observed that my students have connected more with the artist when they know more about him or her and it may help those paintings hang in the halls of their imagination a little more securely, but does it have to be included? I don’t think so.

I also have to wonder what Miss. Mason thought about all of this….. how amazing that they would’ve been able to ask her thoughts, whereas now we can only speculate.

Below is the talk re-typed directly from the L’Umile Pianta volume. I did try to correct typos or noted misspellings with brackets. Other errors I may have missed or had to stay as is if I did not know how to correct them (eg. finding original Ruskin quotes was problematic). I included the discussion at the end of the talk as I thought there were several interesting points offered (I don’t know that I agree about “knowing” Shakespeare!). Let me know what your thoughts are in the comments!


Whether the Painters Chosen for Picture-Talk could Follow Each Other in a More Harmonious Sequence than at Present

by Edith Frost

Let us first consider the main objects of a picture-talk. Dr. Percy Dearmer tells us that “‘the magic,’ as we call it, of art is precisely its sacramentalism. That is, it reveals the eternal and invisible which always lies within the outward…and the gift of understanding is just that we can see the infinite in common things,…the picture must perish one day, but the beauty which is expressed can never die.” Miss Mason tells us further, “That we must learn to discriminate between the meretricious and the essential, between the technique and the thing to be expressed.” It is quite plain that the most important reason for our study of pictures is to see the beauty and to learn the truth told in a different way by every age and school of painting.

To enter into the spirit of a picture, and to know it we must, as it were, dissect it; we must know the history, literature, manners, and customs of the people and age, but this is too big a study for the schoolroom. Some of us, no doubt, do so know many of the great painters, but as teachers we must be content to stand aside; we love greatly, and surely our love and sympathy will inspire the children with love and appreciation, and by teaching them how to look and what to look for, by telling them the legends and stories, we lay a sure foundation in every school and age that should open the door of desire for more knowledge, which will lead them to the delightful task of fuller discovery when school days are over. We see the heart and soul of things after much thought, our powers of insight are called forth, and imagination and sympathy must help. All these powers are capable of ranging over the world, they are independent of time and space, then why, when exercising them in this particular direction, should they be bound in any way? Considering the object of our lesson–is it necessary? We teach other subjects–such as history and mathematics–each in its proper scientific order, but in this subject, where it is possible, let us keep our liberty; give the children leave to wander in the garden of art–if there is a pathway leading through, let it be the knowledge of the teacher and the method born of the object in giving a picture-talk.

I think that if taken in any kind of settled order this subject would lose much of its charm. We should be in danger of the nature of our picture-talk degenerating, and our teaching might tend to emphasize the accidental truths, while the message, the should, would fall into the background, and life, atmosphere, that delicate breath, would vanish. Ruskin warns us that “The trend of the modern critic is to explain the technical method rather than to treat of the essential soul.” Also let us remember the untrained teachers of whom, I suppose, there are many teaching in the P.U.S. I do not suggest that we are better than they, but we have had the advantage of Miss Mason’s training, and we start with a knowledge of many of her thoughts and ideas which other people must discover in degrees. Do not let us put in their way a stumbling-block that might divert them from a more spiritual way into one of history and facts.

Another point I would emphasize concerns the age of children entering the P.U.S. No doubt many enter in Classes III or IV, and supposing of these a number work for a short time only, say two years, would it be better for them to know something of one master in each of six different schools of painting, or to know thoroughly two of the schools? We have had since Easter, 1912, Van Eyck [sic] (Flemish), Rembrandt (Dutch), Velasquez [sic] (Spanish), Carpaccio (Venetian), Watts (English), Dürer (German), but the painters might have been set to cover the same period in a more harmonious sequence, such as Giotto, Fra Angelico, and Botticelli in the Tuscan school, followed by Bellini, Titian, and Veronese in the Venetian School. The point at issue is whether those who had had glimpses of six schools would be more or less educated than those who had a fair knowledge of two schools. Also, is there nothing to be said of the delightful uncertainty of not knowing who comes next? Can any [teacher] say that her pupils on the qui vive to know who is to be next term’s painter? It is not a case of who follows, but who comes.

The desire for a more harmonious sequence having been felt, is there no way to providing a link and some form of order[?] For this purpose I have a chart which was suggested and copied from a similar one in Schools of Painting, by Mary Innes, and this I offer as a substitute for a more settled order in picture study. Here the schools and the centuries are indicated, and the life of each painter is shown by a red line in its proper age and school, and events that influenced thought and production are put in another space. I suggest that the framework of this chart be given to the children, and pasted in the end of their picture-talk book. In this book the pictures are placed in the order taken. At the first picture-talk of the term the new artist’s life-line is put in its proper place, and then where and when he lived and who were his contemporaries is seen at a glance. Thus supposing the children know something of Botticelli and Dürer is set, how interesting to discover that, though they lived far apart, they lived at the same time; also that Dürer knew Bellini in Venice–here are two links. Even more interesting would it be, knowing something of Velasquez [sic], to meet some day his fellow townsman, Murillo, whose circumstances were so different, and to know that Velasquez [sic] helped him with knowledge and sympathy.

Many of our pupils will have opportunities of seeing the famous galleries. I hope and feel inclined to predict that those who have studied the pictures, keeping such a chart, will have learnt unconsciously something of the different schools, and will have enough love and knowledge to enable them to look intelligently, to learn much, and to go unerringly to the right pictures.

As to the advisability of making children do drawings of the picture set.

I understand that there is feeling that children should not be asked to reproduce these great works of arts as a whole, as it might tend to diminish their appreciation of them, and also lessen their reverence for the minds that called them forth, though they might well be asked to study carefully some small detail, and draw that.

We all know how much Ruskin drew and copied, how he visited the haunts of the great painters and made drawings of them, and the more he knew, the more he corrected and revised his earlier works, and the greater his love and reverence became. “Morelli, the Italian critic, professed to be able to fix with accuracy the authorship of almost any picture, because his exact knowledge of details of drawing peculiar to each master revealed the authors as clearly and certainly as though the name were writ large.” We, and the children under our guidance, cannot surely do better than to study in the same way; to give time for so much detail is not possible, but we should be able to make discovery to a certain extent possible to the pupil.

In order to know a picture we must study and narrate, and this narration takes the form of a drawing, which serves to fix the picture and its details firmly in our minds. No mere looking will fully unveil the inner meaning, we must learn the picture by heart, and hold it in our memory, that it may become a subject for contemplation and a joy; the more we ponder and discover, the greater will our love and reverence grow–and thus should it be with the children.

Sometimes the drawing is from memory, and sometimes it is done direct from the picture, whether of the whole or of a detail. I confess that I cannot see how either way of reproducing should tend to lessen reverence in any way, because it is, surely, impossible for the ordinary being to make a perfectly correct drawing from memory; it would be possible to copy perfectly, but who in the schoolroom could give the necessary time? We must decide according to the ability of our pupils, whether it be possible to attempt the whole, and through failure to realize something of the greatness of the master mind, or to take a part, and through the power to reproduce it truly draw nearer to the mind of the artist, and realize something of its beauty and strength; but always against this latter method must be placed the fact that details are apt to lose their meaning if taken from the whole, and that, however, big and full of drawing a picture may be, its outline should always be suggested by a few lines as well as the more careful drawing of one or more details.

Lastly, let us face the question of lack of reverence for the master mind. We must be careful that when reproducing the children are full of the idea that they are only expressing what someone else has done, trying to discover what the artist knew, they are not of themselves making a picture, but copying, and there is a vast different between the two, the only similarity is that perfection is possible.

If children have studied and been able to understand a small or great part of the meaning of a picture, and know also something of the way in which the great painters worked, such as the fresco painters, and such masters of line as Botticelli, of light and colour as Titian, there must be very few who would not reverence the pictures, and through them the creator; even more so if they realize the originality, the love and strength, the necessity of expressing a message which must be given to the world, regardless of difficulties, and is, in spite of almost grotesque drawing in some cases of earlier works.

Reverence is capable of growth. As I said before, it is after the picture is in our minds that it is possible to understand and appreciate more fully–then reverence will grow. We must remember this in dealing with children; they are so inexperienced and ignorant, even more so than we; how can they be expected to understand and value at once, though my own experience is that children are keenly aware of the atmosphere of a picture, especially if we refrain from speech. The object of our picture-talk is to strengthen their love and reverence of truth and beauty.

I quote from Ourselves: “It is not in a day or a year that Fra Angelico will tell us of the beauty of holiness, that Giotto will confide his interpretation of the meaning of life, that Millet will tell us of the simplicity and dignity that belong to labour on the soil, that Rembrandt will show us the sweetness of humanity in many a common-place countenance…the outward and visible sign is of less moment than the inward and spiritual…”


Discussion

Several students thought it would be a pity to destroy the children’s joyful anticipation of an entirely new and unknown artist, and one averred that as in the field of nature the children’s joy in gathering and naming flowers would be spoilt by directions to classify, so the field of art would lose some of its attractiveness by following a rigid chronology.

It was thought the chart might be of use for older children in placing the period of the artist chosen, etc. One student found that charts had a great attraction for some children in Classes Ib and II, more even than for older children.

One student considered that reproducing pictures of their details increased reverence for the artist’s work, and another found that, however feeble the attempts the children made, they appreciated the pictures all the more.

Miss Parish inquired whether it is the experience of teachers that children desire to know more details of the artists’ lives as they grow older, and hw lessons to older children are supplemented.

Several students reminded the meeting that Miss Mason attached great importance to the artist’s life being subordinated to his work, and that interest in the picture was not necessarily the outcome of interest in the painter’s life.

One student said that she considered it important that Class IV should be acquainted with the conditions of life at the time of painting in order to bring out the spirit of the age. She instanced the religious life that influenced the work of the Italian masters.

Another said that the spirit of the age was brought out in the subject, and the conditions of the life and history itself could be gleaned from the study of the picture, and another affirmed that more, indeed, could be learnt of the man and his times from the picture than from the study of the artist’s, and cited SHakespeare as an example of man being known through his works.

One student considered that there was a possibility of getting too literary an aspect of a picture, and another inquired if it would be lawful to point out the spirit of the picture to older children if it was not realized by them.

Miss Parish thought that if such was the case it plainly showed that the children were not yet ready for it, and that it is better to be content with just sowing seed, and that one may rest assured that anything so living is ultimately bought to bear fruit. She advised forcing nothing upon the children, but leaving them to take what they needed from the lessons.

The following resolution was put to the meeting, and carried:–“It is found most satisfactory to take picture-talks as at present set, to cover a wide field, with a possible addition of a chart in Classes II, III, and IV.”

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Weekend Entertainment: 18 September 2020 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-18-september-2020/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-18-september-2020/#respond Fri, 18 Sep 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=69626 Earlier this week, I was part of my first Morning Time Live during which I was able to introduce the members there to French-Jewish artist Camille Pissarro. As I said on Instagram, a morning that involves talking about art is automatically a good morning! I actually prepared for this talk for quite a while before […]

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Earlier this week, I was part of my first Morning Time Live during which I was able to introduce the members there to French-Jewish artist Camille Pissarro. As I said on Instagram, a morning that involves talking about art is automatically a good morning! I actually prepared for this talk for quite a while before it took place, which is why I didn’t have a post this week. I’ve also been finding the need to cut back on the amount of time I spend in this space. It’s difficult to juggle writing blog posts along with also offering new picture study aids and other things in the shop, and I’d much rather do the latter. So….I’m pondering making some changes here.

And now a little commonplacing for your weekend….

…a mother whose final question is, ‘What will people say? what will people think? how will it look?’ and the children grow up with habits of seeming, and not of being; they are content to appear well-dressed, well-mannered, and well-intentioned to outsiders, with very little effort after beauty, order, and goodness at home, and in each other’s eyes.

Charlotte Mason, Home Education (vol 1 pg 106)

On to the links!

Immersive Outdoor Exhibition Projects Van Gogh’s Paintings Onto Giant Shipping Containers So I wonder how much tickets to Wellington are right now….or maybe a move? I could maybe fit all of our stuff in a shipping container….

How I Got Digital Minimalism Right The Second Time Around #2 and #3 = yes. Since I started using a paper planner for both homeschool and non-homeschool planning instead of online services, my screen time has cut back significantly. I have also found a lovely creative outlet that I never would’ve experimented with if it hadn’t been for analog planning.

5 magical moments homeschoolers can look forward to this year This list could also be called, “5 reasons why we homeschool.” I have experienced each and every single one of these things at one point or another even in the four short years we’ve been homeschooling.

From the blog…

Simple Garlic Chicken Soup - ahumbleplace.com

(2012) Whispers from God – A little but more about my journey through PTSD after my son’s birth. It’s amazing to me how God can use anything or anyone to speak to us.

(2012) Simple Garlic Chicken Soup Ironically, this was one of the most popular posts on my site for a very long time. Simple and easy soup is a great way to combat sickness!

Have a lovely weekend!

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Weekend Entertainment: 11 September 2020 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-11-september-2020/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-11-september-2020/#respond Fri, 11 Sep 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=68943 Today is the first day of our homeschool co-op this year. I’ve taught picture study the last three years (except our first Term in the co-op when I didn’t teach anything) and lower-form Shakespeare last year. I’ll be leading those again along with folksong this year, which is a subject I haven’t taught before. I […]

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The mantises seem to be quite content in their little cages, especially as they weren’t outside when we got SNOW earlier this week!

Today is the first day of our homeschool co-op this year. I’ve taught picture study the last three years (except our first Term in the co-op when I didn’t teach anything) and lower-form Shakespeare last year. I’ll be leading those again along with folksong this year, which is a subject I haven’t taught before. I was a little intimidated at first as our time period is 800 to 1650 AD and I usually associated folksongs with the 18th and 19th centuries. However, a Charlotte Mason has brought an area of ignorance for me to my attention and there are some absolutely beautiful folksongs from this time period! For our first term, we’ll be learning Now, O now, I needs must part and I found a lovely, if not a little strange, video of an ensemble singing it on a train and the English countryside….

Also, a little commonplacing from this week:

This horse-in-a-mill round of geography and French, history and sums, was no more than playing at education; for who remembers the scraps of knowledge he laboured over as a child? and would not the application of a few hours in later life effect more than a year’s drudgery at any one subject in childhood? If education is to secure the step-by-step progress of the individual and the race, it must mean something over and above the daily plodding at small tasks which goes by the name.

Charlotte Mason, Home Education (pg 98)

Also, I had a big shipment of products this week so several items have been re-stocked in the shop!

And now the links!

Do These 3 Things Before You Step Foot into that Cute Fall Aisle I think fall is the most tempting time of year for me to go out and buy all.the.decorations because it’s also my favorite season. I appreciate Myquillyn’s advice for creating a homey atmosphere even while being somewhat of a minimalist. Also….”I can be thankful without writing it on a placement,” is priceless.

In a mother’s education, less is more. “If we still think of learning as cramming for an exam, answering multiple choice questions, highlighting, and rereading the same chapter multiple times in order to pass a test, we can relax. Many of us still feel we must take in as much information as possible in order to learn. Charlotte Mason, however, turns away from this idea, telling us that when the goal of education is the formation of character, less (done better) is more.” (And on that note… Brandy Vencel posted her fall mother culture habit trackers for download this week!)

How to Stick to Your Grocery Budget This list has great tips, but I especially found postponing shopping by a day (or more) to be a good way to save money. Out of necessity since COVID started shutting things down in March, we had to go a few times without a weekly shopping trip and I surprised myself in the meals I was able to pull together even when I felt like the fridge was empty!

From the blog…

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 1 Plans (Take 2) Last week was B’s turn and this week it was C’s. We’ve been chugging through our school year for three weeks now and everything is going very smoothly for which I am so thankful!

(2017) Fort Laramie Junior Ranger Adventures If you’re ever in Wyoming, this little National Historic Site is one of our favorite stops. We watched the 2017 total eclipse here and it was absolutely amazing.

(2016) Camping at the Great Sand Dunes We started collecting National Park Service Junior Ranger badges for B in 2016 and got around quite a bit that summer. One of the trips we took was 3.5 hours south to the Great Sand Dunes, another National Park I highly recommend if you’re in Colorado!

Have a lovely weekend!

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Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 1 Plans (Take 2) https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-homeschool-year-1-plans-take-2/ https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-homeschool-year-1-plans-take-2/#respond Tue, 08 Sep 2020 21:57:53 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=67859 (Please note that I have linked to the book lists on the AO website to respect their licensing terms and the hard work they’ve put into such an amazing curriculum which they offer for free. Books that use affiliate links here are not listed on the AO website.) I now have two students in grade school! C, at 6.5, […]

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(Please note that I have linked to the book lists on the AO website to respect their licensing terms and the hard work they’ve put into such an amazing curriculum which they offer for free. Books that use affiliate links here are not listed on the AO website.)

I now have two students in grade school! C, at 6.5, will be starting AmblesideOnline Year 1 earlier than B did (he had just turned 7), so I want to keep this in mind as we go through things and take it slowly if we need to. She has been chomping at the bit to narrate for two years now and has been wanting to learn to read nearly that long as well, so I am encouraged in those areas as B wasn’t looking forward to either one. She is not in the same place her brother was in terms of how well she writes or being able to sound out basic words, but she’s definitely a lot more enthusiastic! Either way, I’m not concerned at all, but rather, glad I can allow her to go at her own pace rather than trying to get her to perform according to pre-determined standards.

I’m also excited to go through all the readings I did with B three years ago again. I feel like I haven’t been able to focus on her as much as I have with B the last few years even though we did kindergarten last year, so I’m glad to be able to finally pull her aboard the AmblesideOnline train as well. 🙂 I’m also thankful that I already had most of the books for Year 1 so there was very little prep involved in getting ready for her first grade year!

I won’t be writing a post every term for her as I did with B as I think a lot of it will be redundant. You can see all of my Year 1 posts for him here. I will, however, write a recap for her at the end of the year. If you read B’s Year 4 Term 1 post, some of the descriptions of these topics will be duplicated as I’m using the same book/plan for both students.

And now on to the plans!

Morning Time

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 4 Term 1 Plans - ahumbleplace.com

I’ll be making some changes to Morning Time from last year, mainly in that we will no longer be working on memorization (for Bible verses and prayers) or Recitation poems during that time as each child will be on their own Recitation schedule (see below). I also will no longer be reading a nursery rhyme, which is something I’ve been doing every year since we started (😭). We will continue having prayer, the Doxology, hymn, folksong, picture/composer study, poem review, and Edith Holden nature notebook reading, the Lord’s Prayer, and our Benediction, and we’ll be adding a chapter from Proverbs (to match whatever day of the month it is) as well as a summary of what we’ll be reading that day (B’s request). I’ll write out a more detailed comparison chart at the end of the year as well.

I’m also going to be taping the printed version of our Morning Time schedule into my planner this year (as opposed to keeping it in a separate binder) in the month sections to keep as much of our year as possible all in one place. I’ll eventually have a post on how I lay out my paper planner….someday. 

Bible

Bible Reading List Here
ESV Thinline Bible

When I went through Year 1 with B, I played around with a few different ways to do our Bible reading, beginning with following the RCL and then another Charlotte Mason Bible-reading plan I had found. This time, I’m just sticking with the AO schedule as I eventually ended up there last time and I don’t need to complicated things!

History/Biography

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 1

History Book List Here
Biography Book List Here
Dear Benjamin Banneker
Phillis Sings Out Freedom: The Story of George Washington and Phillis Wheatley
Buffalo Bird Girl: A Hidatsa Story

Our Island Story has made the move from B’s school cart to C’s so I’ll have another three years of this interesting book on the history of England. I’m debating doing some kind of timeline with C with the kings and queens timeline figures just so it’s easier for her (and me!) to keep them all straight, but I’m not sure yet as she’s only doing a personal timeline this year (see below).

We’ll be skipping the first two readings (both in Term 1) of Trial and Triumph due to content. When I went through Year 1 with B, I actually skipped the book entirely that year and decided I’d never use it because of the violence in those first two stories, but I decided to give it another try in Year 2 and found them to be quite a bit tamer. I’ll be pre-reading these beginning in Term 2.

For C’s kindergarten year, we read through Fifty Famous People which was a nice little introduction to the shorter-story format in Fifty Famous Stories Retold, so I know this one will work well for us.

For the d’Aulaire biographies on Benjamin Franklin, George Washington, and Buffalo Bill, I decided to expand on something I did during B’s Year 1. Around that time, I found Charlotte Mason Geek’s post on how to adapt the AO Year 1/Year 2 history rotation and she recommended Buffalo Bird Girl in place of Buffalo Bill. However, we live in the west and only just about an hour’s drive from Buffalo Bill’s grave and museum, so I didn’t want to eliminate that book from the rotation entirely. We ended up reading both, which I think offered an interesting way to compare viewpoints from two entirely different people at the same time and place in history. It also led to good discussion and I really wanted to do the same for the other two books. I know the d’Aulaires in general have been controversial in that they offer a very Euro/white-centric view of history and, in fact, we won’t be reading Pocahontas at all even though it’s listed as a free read. So this summer, I did some research and found two books that offer alternative viewpoints to the scheduled books and I plan to read those along with the d’Aulaires.

Dear Benjamin Banneker tells the story of a black, self-taught mathematician and astronomer who lived at the same time as Benjamin Franklin. The book talks about how he was interested in astronomy from a young age and ended up writing a yearly almanac from 1792 to 1797. It was sold in New England and grew to be enormously popular there. Banneker was a free man, but the plight of slaves was heavy on his mind and in 1791, he wrote a letter to Thomas Jefferson asking how he could’ve written and signed the Declaration of Independence given that he owned slaves. Jefferson sent back an evasive reply saying that he hoped for change, but then continued owning slaves throughout his life. I liked the fact that both Banneker and Franklin were self-taught, interested in the sciences, and published almanacs. Obviously one of them was a little more altruistic than the other.

Phillis Sings Out Freedom is about African-born poet Phillis Wheatley who was brought to the United States at a very young age (she was described as not having her front teeth in yet) and sold as a slave to a prominent Boston family. They eventually taught her to read and write and she became a talented poet who wrote a poem about George Washington and the struggle for America’s independence. Part of the book is about Washington’s efforts to defeat the British and the other part tells Phillis’s story. This includes how she came to this country and her life as a slave as well as her eventual emancipation. I also really liked A Voice of Her Own and may include that in the future, but didn’t feel it fit C’s comprehension level right now.

Geography

Geography Book List Here and Here
Beautiful Feet Books Map (I got it in the set)

Round two of Paddle to the Sea! I still want to get one of those little canoes…. C will also be coloring along on the Beautiful Feet Books map which B did as well. I plan to hang them next to each other in the basement so we have a little record of both kids’ journeys through the Holling books. 🙂

Natural History/Science

Natural History/Science Booklist Here

C has been a long-time fan of Thornton Burgess and I think has a considerable number of his books memorized as I’ve made a lot of use of all the free books on Librivox for her. She is also very much looking forward to James Herriot!

Nature Study

Nature study is a mystery at this point as we’ll be doing that with our co-op, which won’t meet the first time until this Friday. We made a few changes this year and will be having an object lesson in the morning and then a nature walk in the afternoon on co-op days, which I think will be good and more immersive. My friend Jennifer, who is starting her own nature school, has been leading us in nature study for the last three years and I’ve found her guidance in this area to be wonderful.

Penmanship/Copywork

Worksheetworks.com Print Practice

I started B’s first grade year with manuscript copywork but then switched him to cursive mid-year. I may do the same with C but I want to make sure she’s ready before I make the swtich. For now, I’ll be making manuscript copywork pages from Worksheetworks.com using the copywork selections from the old AO Copywork Yahoo Group.

Phonics/Reading

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 1

Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
Bob Collection 1
Bob Collection 2
Little Bear

We will spend three days per week working through Teach Your Child to Read… and then the last day of the school week reading one Bob book together. Once we finish Bob Collection 1 (24 books), we’ll move on to Collection 2. When I went through Teach Your Child to Read…. with B, I ended up breaking the last lessons up into two days as they were quite a bit longer than the earlier lessons. Even with that, we should be able to finish the book by the end of the year and we’ll begin reading the Little Bear books.

Math

RightStart Level B

She finished MEP Reception in the spring and it prepared B so well for RS Level B that I’m expecting the same for her. I splurged when B entered first grade and got the whole RightStart Math Set along with the Level B book bundle. It was a big upfront cost, but I have used every single one of the manipulatives with B and will now be using them with C so I definitely think it was worth it!

Foreign Language

Salsa + Wyoming Department of Education Salsa Materials
De Colores

We’ll be continuing with Salsa videos once per week, then one of the activities from the Wyoming DoE Salsa Materials another day, and the other two days singing our Spanish folksong from De Colores.

Poetry

Poetry Booklist Here

I’ll be reading one poem per day to her from the books assigned for each term.

Literature

Literature Book List Here

We’ll be following the book list above for the most part. I’ll be teaching lower-form Shakespeare in our co-op again this year and I hope to read Lambs’ version of The Tempest in Term 1. I haven’t decided if I will also read A Midsummer Night’s Dream at home as well but I’m leaning that way as B has already had all of these plays and I’d like C to get the Lambs’ versions of them as well before we begin reading the real plays in Form II. If we only read the one per term in co-op, we won’t get through all of them.

I’m also looking at Lambs’ versions of The Winter’s Tale in Term 2 and Twelfth Night in Term 3.

Timeline

Personal Timeline

C will be doing a personal timeline this year like her brother did during his Year 1. Each box represents three months and I’ll go through all of my photos from those three months, select a few of bigger events like holidays or birthdays, then print them out on one sheet of paper so she can pick which one she wants to draw in the box for that quarter.

Recitation

Ruminating on Recitation Article (read this first!)
Recitation Guidelines and Student Log

C will be learning an Old Testament passage, a New Testament passage, a Psalm, and a poem over the course of each term (per the instructions in the article and log linked above), which I will read to her once every day and then she will recite at the end of the term.

Art

Picture Study

I’ll be teaching picture study in our co-op once again this year and in the first term we’ll be focusing on Jan van Eyck which is terribly exciting for me as he’s a favorite of mine. 🙂 One of the other terms will be Diego Velázquez and I haven’t decided on the third artist yet.

Drawing

What to Draw and How to Draw It

C will do one drawing per week from What to Draw and How to Draw It. I will keep all of these in her school-year binder (which is another post I need to make…).

Music

Composer Study

Composer Study will also be covered in co-op so I don’t know who that will be either, but I remember hearing something about Gregorian chant for Term 1, which sounds very interesting!

Folksong/Hymn

These are also both co-op subjects, but I’ll be teaching folksong so we were able to start that with the beginning of our school year. Our period in history is 800 to 1650 AD, which feels like a challenge in terms of finding good folksongs (though I’ve already picked the first one!), but I think the challenge will be good for me.

Handicrafts

Nourishing Traditions Cookbook for Children

We will no longer be doing handicrafts in co-op this year, so I decided we would learn some cooking skills in Term 1. I include this book in the kindergarten curriculum, but it’s only a few recipes so I’m going to use Term 1 as a chance to really dive into it. I’m actually really excited about this as splitting up the book worked really well and I had the kids pick which recipes from each chapter they wanted to make. As of right now, I have a reading scheduled on Tuesdays and then cooking scheduled on Thursdays during our morning lesson time. It’ll be interesting to see how this works, but I’m thankful we can be flexible and use the afternoons if we need to.

In Terms 2 and 3, I may try some origami with her, which is what B did during his Year 1 in co-op, or I may just move on to paper sloyd. I’ll write more about what I decide in the end-of-year recap post.

Physical Education

Swedish Drill Revisited

PE was another subject that was taught in co-op that we’ll be bringing home this year. I’m going to be continuing with the last routine in Swedish Drill Revisited and moving on to Swedish Drill Revisited II once we finish that.

I’m both intimidated but also excited to have two grade-school students as the last three years with really just one student have been manageable. I’m up to the challenge, though, and excited to what her learn and grow!

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Weekend Entertainment: 4 September 2020 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-4-september-2020/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-4-september-2020/#comments Fri, 04 Sep 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=68180 Week two of school is in the books and we’re still moving along steadily! I think being able to give some of the readings to B to do on his own has really helped in terms of being able to fit everything in every day but still be done by 1. They made their first […]

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Week two of school is in the books and we’re still moving along steadily! I think being able to give some of the readings to B to do on his own has really helped in terms of being able to fit everything in every day but still be done by 1. They made their first recipe this week from The Nourishing Traditions Cookbook for Children (egg-yolk smoothies) and it was a huge success. I stepped aside while they gathered all of the ingredients and equipment, made the measurements, and put everything in the blender (I did separate the eggs for them, but now they know how to do it). Not only did they make something essentially all on their own, but it was very tasty too!

I also had my first meeting for the Idyll Challenge (and managed to get my reading done in time!) on Tuesday. I mentioned earlier this year that my local Charlotte Mason book group ended this summer, so when my friend Dawn mentioned that she was going to be leading a Challenge group, I thought I might join her. Not only does it allow me to keep going to book group “with” her (her family recently moved from Colorado to Georgia), but I’m hoping I also am able to finish all six books in the two years allotted as I’ve read two of them but only parts of the other four. Hopefully I can keep it up!

On to the links!

Why I Don’t Do Devotions “I fear that doing devotions has become another form of practicing religion without requiring faith. I fear that it has become a time for us to busy ourselves with doing instead of quieting ourselves before the Lord and being with Him. I fear that the practice of doing devotions can actually interfere with the mindset of having continual communion with the Lord who demands all of us, not just a portion of our time.”

Scale How Meditations Riverbend Press is now offering an absolutely beautiful hardcover version of Charlotte Mason’s Scale How Meditations. I received the paperback version as a gift this past Christmas and have been slowly making my way through it over the last several months. Maybe once I finish, I’ll reward myself with this copy. 🙂

How to Plan your Mother Culture Time Admittedly, my Mother Culture time has been suffering quite a bit this year. This post is a good reminder of why it’s so important. “Yes, there are challenges in front of us, and seasons of life which are more difficult than others, but self-education begins with a simple stack of thoughtfully chosen books, and catching bits of time to spend with them.”

From the blog…

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 4 Term 1 Plans School started for us last week and I finally got around to posting a write-up about our Year 4 Term 1 Plans this week. We’ll be using AmblesideOnline again this year and adding in a few new things like spelling, grammar, Latin, and map drills. It felt a little overwhelming when I was scheduling these things in addition to trying to juggle a Year 1 student as well, but so far, everything has gone very well. Here’s hoping that continues!

(2019) Commonplacing: The Work is Not Ours (Celebration of Discipline) A little commonplacing from a book that quickly became one of my very favorites on the topic of spirituality.

(2014) Excited About a…Curriculum? My first little adventure into the world of homeschooling was a preschool “curriculum” I found when B was 3 and I started with him when he was 4. I still have very fond memories of that little reading schedule and can’t recommend it enough for the preschool years.

Have a lovely weekend!

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Charlotte Mason Homeschool Fourth Grade Term 1 Plans https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-homeschool-fourth-grade-term-1-plans/ https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-homeschool-fourth-grade-term-1-plans/#comments Mon, 31 Aug 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=66599 (Please note that I have linked to the book lists on the AO website to respect their licensing terms and the hard work they’ve put into such an amazing curriculum which they offer for free. Books that use affiliate links here are not listed on the AO website.) I remember back either when B hadn’t started Year 1 yet […]

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(Please note that I have linked to the book lists on the AO website to respect their licensing terms and the hard work they’ve put into such an amazing curriculum which they offer for free. Books that use affiliate links here are not listed on the AO website.)

I remember back either when B hadn’t started Year 1 yet or while we were working our way through it, I read somewhere that a mother with pre-school-aged children was re-doing her own education by going through all of the readings scheduled for AmblesideOnline beginning with Year 4. It seemed so far away to me, that number 4, and though I thought it was a great idea and printed out the schedule for myself, I never got around to doing it.

And now, here we are. The 4 has arrived.

B’s fourth grade year marks his entrance into Form II which means he’ll be doing some reading on his own followed by narration to me. Of course, I will be pre-reading all of the books he’ll be reading to make sure the content is okay as well as making sure that his narrations are good. When I first sat down to start planning out this year, I thought there would be a lot more he’d be reading on his own and that actually made me kind of sad as I enjoy reading things with him. However, even though having two students in the same form would be helpful for scheduling, having C in Year 1 is probably the next best thing as the readings are so short and there aren’t many of them, which means I can still read quite a bit to him as well.

We’ll also begin written narrations this year, though I think that may not be until a later term. We’ll also begin more structured grammar and spelling lessons while still continuing with copywork. As I said I was going to do all of last year, I finally revamped our Recitations, which you can read more about below. And we’ll also be moving a few subjects home after having done them in our homeschool co-op the last several years but won’t be any longer as we have fewer families which means fewer teachers.

So here are our plans for Term 1!

Morning Time

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 4 Term 1 Plans - ahumbleplace.com

I’ll be making some changes to Morning Time from last year, mainly in that we will no longer be working on memorization (for Bible verses and prayers) or Recitation poems during that time as each child will be on their own Recitation schedule (see below). I also will no longer be reading a nursery rhyme, which is something I’ve been doing every year since we started (😭). We will continue having prayer, the Doxology, hymn, folksong, picture/composer study, poem review, and Edith Holden nature notebook reading, the Lord’s Prayer, and our Benediction, and we’ll be adding a chapter from Proverbs (to match whatever day of the month it is) as well as a summary of what we’ll be reading that day (B’s request). I’ll write out a more detailed comparison chart after the end of Term 1 as well as after I’ve had time to figure out exactly what it will look like.

I’m also going to be taping the printed version of our Morning Time schedule into my planner this year (as opposed to keeping it in a separate binder) in the month sections to keep as much of our year as possible all in one place. I’ll eventually have a post on how I lay out my paper planner….someday. 🙂

Bible

Bible Book List Here and Here
The Student Bible Atlas

I’ve had a few people ask how I schedule the Bible readings over the course of a week, so I thought I might expand on that here. When I’m doing my planning for the week, I take a look at how the Bible I use for school has broken it into sections or paragraphs, count all of the sections in the assigned reading(s), and then divide that by four (since we have a four-day school week). If the number of sections or paragraphs doesn’t work well to divide, then I’ll divide by number of verses. It’s a pretty simple system that is possibly a tad too formulaic, but it works well when I’m trying to plan and don’t have a lot of time.

As in years past, I’ll be using the J. Paterson Smyth guides to assist with preparing for the readings. I pre-read the chapter from Smyth and then underline parts I want to share during our lesson. Sometimes Smyth summarizes the previous reading (as is the case with the first chapter of Joshua) far better than I can, so I read that during the lesson (though I don’t require narration of it). Then I read the Bible passage(s) and he narrates, then I might read more from Smyth to expand on the reading (again, no narration required since the point of Bible lessons is the Bible reading itself). Smyth does an especially good job of “setting the scene” and offering alternative views to the reading, so I’ve enjoyed using his commentaries for my own knowledge as well.

History/Biography

History Book List Here and Here

This is the first year I will not be reading Our Island Story with B, which feels a little weird as it’s been a staple for us the last three years. We’ll continue with This Country of Ours, though I’ll definitely keep pre-reading this one as many of the terms used for people of color and native Americans are offensive and it can be somewhat violent at times. What’s neat about reading early American history is that, while my family didn’t come here until the 19th and 20th centuries, my husband has been doing quite a bit of genealogical research into his family and has discovered several relatives who fought in the Revolutionary War. So, to a certain extent, we’ll be reading about B’s ancestors. 🙂

I’ll still be pre-reading Trial and Triumph and omitting stories as needed because even into last year there were some that I ended up not reading due to content.

I was also surprised to discover last week that the AO Advisory added a new book to Years 4 through 6. I was glad to see this as it offers the viewpoint of African Americans during the Revolutionary War. I haven’t had a chance to look through it as it won’t arrive until mid-September, but I am looking forward to adding it into our schedule.

Geography

Geography Book List Here and Here
Beautiful Feet Books Map (I got it in the set)

I am very excited about Minn of the Missisippi this year as I grew up in Minnesota. This will also be one of a few books that B will be reading on his own this term and I’ll have him slowly fill out the BFBooks map after he narrates each week for map work.

We’ll also be doing map drills for the first time this year which I’m also excited about as I got great advice on how to do these from two friends (Dawn and Dawn :)). For the first Term, some of the weeks we’ll be focusing on Minn which includes the area from Minnesota down south to Louisiana using this map. The other weeks when we don’t have a Minn reading, I’ll have him focus on the 13 colonies (blank and not blank).

We’ll also be reading the selections from Charlotte Mason’s Elementary Geography and Long’s Home Geography as outlined here.

Natural History and Science

Natural History and Science Booklist Here

Storybook of Science and Gregor Mendel are two other book B will be reading on his own. I’ve actually been thinking about buying Storybook of Science for several years now as it looks like a wonderful resource for nature study, so I was happy to see it on the booklist this year.

I’m admittedly a little nervous about Madam How and Lady Why as I’ve heard many people say they had to drop this book because everyone hated it. I am planning to make copious use of the study guide on the AO website and hope for the best, but I am going to keep an open mind in case it is one that doesn’t end up working for us either.

One thing I completely missed last year that we’ll be doing this year are the supplemental science readings/experiments/activities that AO has optionally scheduled. Last year the book was Science Lab in the Supermarket. I saw it on the book list, but as it was listed as optional and I completely missed how it was scheduled on the HTML weekly schedule page because I generally never look at that page (I just download the PDF weekly schedule), we didn’t do them. Over the summer, however, I read a post on the AO forum where someone had mentioned the schedule and I was disappointed that we missed out on it last year. This year, we’ll be following the schedule for Physics Lab in the Home according to the Year 4 HTML weekly schedule.

Nature Study

Nature study is a mystery at this point as we’ll be doing that with our co-op, which won’t meet the first time until September 11th. We made a few changes this year and will be having an object lesson in the morning and then a nature walk in the afternoon on co-op days, which I think will be good and more immersive. My friend Jennifer, who is starting her own nature school, has been leading us in nature study for the last three years and I’ve found her guidance in this area to be wonderful.

Language Arts

Charlotte Mason Homeschool Year 4 Term 1 Plans - ahumbleplace.com

Penmanship/Copywork

I’m planning to have B do one page per day of cursive copywork from the old AO Copywork Yahoo Group files which included excerpts from books we’ll be reading over the course of the year.

Spelling

Spelling Wisdom

We’ll be working on spelling for the first time twice per week this year with Simply Charlotte Mason’s Spelling Wisdom. I love that the book uses sentences from literature to teach commonly-used words rather than just memorizing word lists, which is what I did in elementary school.

Grammar

Junior Analytical Grammar

For grammar, I debated between a few different curricula, but finally decided on Junior Analytical Grammar after a friend recommended it and I was able to flip through it at her house. I already absolutely love the voice of the author and I think this will work very well for us at one exercise, twice per week. It’s only 11 units with 5 lessons per unit, so we will most likely complete it partway through the year and then move on to the mechanics book.

Math

RightStart Level E

We haven’t finished RightStart Level D as we did end up taking quite a bit of time off this summer from doing math. However, even with the extra 20-or-so lessons we still need to finish, because we’re bumping our math time up to 30 minutes per day in Form II, I feel confident we can get through those lessons plus the 140 in Level E over the course of the year. Hopefully that confidence is proved to be accurate. 🙂 I still love RightStart and, again, am so glad we chose this program for math!

Foreign Language

Salsa + Wyoming Department of Education Salsa Materials
De Colores
Getting Started with Latin

We’ll be continuing with Salsa videos once per week, then one of the activities from the Wyoming DoE Salsa Materials another day, and the other two days singing our Spanish folksong from De Colores. This worked so, so well for us last year and I’m thankful we found this option as Spanish used to be a big struggle.

Poetry

Alfred, Lord Tennyson Selections Here

I’ll be reading one poem per day and we’ll also take one of our recitation pieces from these selections.

Literature

Literature Booklist Here

We’ll be pretty much following the schedule here with no alterations. I’m also looking forward to reading Robinson Crusoe as I’ve never read it and Swallows and Amazons, which we read last year, contained quite a few references to it.

The only change will be Shakespeare which we’ll be doing through our co-op. I asked B if he wanted to stick with the younger forms and read more Lambs’ Shakespeare stories, but he has chosen to move up and read a real Shakespeare play with the higher forms, so we’ll give that a try in Term 1. His first play will be As You Like It which he’ll be reading with the other students in co-op as well as at home with me.

Plutarch

We will be straying from the default AO schedule here by not starting on Plutarch this year, but instead reading Stories from the History of Rome per AO’s advice. I’m just not feeling like either one of us is ready to add that into our schedule yet, though obviously for different reasons. 🙂

Timeline

Book of Centuries
The Living Page

This will also be the first year we’re doing a Book of Centures. I really went back and forth on whether or not to delay the BoC another year and just do a timeline this year instead as I had seen recommended on the AO forums in places, but I feel like the BoC is a good next step for us. I’m still, admittedly, having a hard time wrapping my brain around ALL of the different history/time charts that were kept in the PNEU schools, so this will be something that may just have to be a work in process while we try things out. I included a link to The Living Page because my copy is getting a lot of use right now!

Recitation

Ruminating on Recitation Article (read this first!)
Recitation Guidelines and Student Log

I feel like I’m finally going to be doing Recitation correctly this year after having sort of hodge-podged it together the last few years. Instead of having B memorize a poem every month purely for the sake of reciting it at the end of the month, I have a better understanding of not only the purpose of Recitation but also how to do it thanks to the article I linked to above. The guidelines were also instrumental in helping me figure out what to include for our Recitation schedule.

In essence, he’ll be learning an Old Testament passage, a New Testament passage, a Psalm, and a poem over the course of each term, with the intention that he actually understands them before he recites them (imagine that). I love this angle as it makes so much more sense from a Charlotte Mason standpoint than what we were doing before.

Art

Picture Study

I’ll be teaching picture study in our co-op once again this year and in the first term we’ll be focusing on Jan van Eyck which is terribly exciting for me as he’s a favorite of mine. 🙂

Drawing/Brushdrawing

What to Draw and How to Draw It
Brushwork

B will continue with one subject from What to Draw and How to Draw It each week as well as part of a lesson from Brushwork. I’m allowing him to use more than one brush size this year for Brushwork as it was frustrating to him that he was not able to get the finer lines for vines that are pictured in the examples with the larger brush he was using. I’m hoping this makes it a little more enjoyable for him as brushdrawing has not been something he has enjoyed. We’re also only going to focus on one color per week just as an experiment.

Music

Composer Study

Composer Study will also be covered in co-op so I don’t know who that will be either, but I remember hearing something about Gregorian chant, which sounds very interesting!

Folksong/Hymn

These are also both co-op subjects, but I’ll be teaching folksong so we’ll be able to start that with the beginning of our school year. Our period in history is 800 to 1650 AD, which feels like a challenge in terms of finding good folksongs (though I’ve already picked the first one!), but I think the challenge will be good for me.

Handicrafts

Nourishing Traditions Cookbook for Children

We will no longer be doing handicrafts in co-op this year, so I decided we would learn some cooking skills in Term 1. I include this book in the kindergarten curriculum, but it’s only a few recipes so I’m going to use this year as a chance to really dive into it. I’m actually really excited about this as splitting up the book worked really well and I had the kids pick which recipes from each chapter they wanted to make. As of right now, I have a reading scheduled on Tuesdays and then cooking scheduled on Thursdays during our morning lesson time. It’ll be interesting to see how this works, but I’m thankful we can be flexible and use the afternoons if we need to.

Physical Education

Swedish Drill Revisited

PE was another subject that was taught in co-op that we’ll be bringing home this year. I’m going to be continuing with the last routine in Swedish Drill Revisited and moving on to Swedish Drill Revisited II once we finish that.

Overall, I’m excited for this year and though I feel like there are some sad changes with fewer readings for B and I to do together, I’m excited that he’ll be making progress in his education and challenged in ways he hasn’t experienced before! I’m also excited for the subjects we’ve been able to bring home from co-op as I feel a little more control over what we’re learning. It’ll be a good year!

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Weekend Entertainment: 28 August 2019 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-28-august-2019/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-28-august-2019/#respond Fri, 28 Aug 2020 14:38:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=67231 I took a tiny bit of an unplanned break this week on the blogging/online front, but for good reason! This was our first week of school…my first week with two kids in grade school. As such, the majority of my focus was on them and our success in our school days and I’m glad I […]

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I took a tiny bit of an unplanned break this week on the blogging/online front, but for good reason! This was our first week of school…my first week with two kids in grade school. As such, the majority of my focus was on them and our success in our school days and I’m glad I was able to do that. I’m happy to report that it went very well, actually better than I expected, and I feel really good about this school year!

Last week we had well-child appointments for both kids with a new family nurse practitioner who I absolutely love. She is 1.5 hours from us but completely worth it! It’s such a relief to have found someone who aligns with our family’s views on overall health and wellness. I am also so glad to know that I have a resource who will give me good, solid advice that addresses the source of the problem rather than just the symptoms when we’re experiencing health issues.

In other news, we didn’t get a hike in this week, mainly because of the fires in the western part of the state that were causing air quality issues and subsequent warnings to stay inside. One of the fires just passed the mark as the largest in recorded history here in Colorado. 2020 continues to be a shining beacon of joy in the landscape of history.

On to the links!

Ruminating on Recitation If you’re going into the school year wondering how to implement Recitation, and even if you’re a seasoned veteran who isn’t sure you’re doing it properly (I know I wasn’t), I can’t recommend this article and Maria’s Recitation Guidelines and Logs enough. They revolutionized my Recitation planning this year and I love the direction we’re going now. Definitely read her article before you download the logs!

Want happier, calmer kids? Simplify their world. This makes me want to purge toys….

The Myers-Briggs® Personality Types as Homeschool Parents Any other ISTJs out there?

From the blog…

Charlotte Mason Homeschool School Room Tour #charlottemason #homschool

(2019) Homeschool Room Tour I offered a little tour of our homeschool room, which is also our family room, last year. A few things have changed since then that would warrant an update to this post, but overall, it’s still the same, cozy space it was last year.

(2018) Commonplacing: Curiosity and the Desire for Knowledge (Ourselves) “When we read a little here and a little there and merely dip our toes in a topic mentioned ‘somewhere,’ are we really desiring knowledge of that topic? Or are we just grasping at ‘tit-bits’ and trying to make them into real knowledge? Are we sacrificing true and personal knowledge of a topic ‘for the sake of miserable scraps of information about persons and things that have little connection with one another and little connection with ourselves’?”

(2017) Charlotte Mason Printable Quotes Did you know I sell printable (and printed) Charlotte Mason (and John Muir as well as Bible verse) quote designs in my shop? This is actually the first thing I started selling from my website three years ago. 🙂

(2012) Once-A-Month Cooking the Nourishing Traditions Way I used to be a little obsessed with once-a-month cooking, but at the time, Once a Month Mom (now Once a Month Meals) didn’t offer any kind menus that lined up with the way we eat. This post was an announcement of my first attempt to make a OAMM with recipes from Nourishing Traditions. It really makes me want to re-visit this idea as I never really got into the habit of once-a-month cooking and OAMM now offers a variety of menus for different diets.

Have a lovely weekend!

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Weekend Entertainment: 21 August 2020 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-21-august-2020/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-21-august-2020/#respond Fri, 21 Aug 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=65310 We managed to get in one more longer hike this week before we start school next week! I’m still hoping to go for more during our school year as we’re continuing with our 4-day school week, but we’ll also have co-op on Fridays so it won’t be as easy to get out for hikes as […]

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We managed to get in one more longer hike this week before we start school next week! I’m still hoping to go for more during our school year as we’re continuing with our 4-day school week, but we’ll also have co-op on Fridays so it won’t be as easy to get out for hikes as often. I’m also hoping to continue going for walks around our neighborhood as this has been something we all enjoyed over the summer. Hopefully my introvert self doesn’t chicken out when we have to switch from morning walks to afternoon walks when more people are out and about.

On to the links!

Forget the Box | Embracing Your Child’s Otherness “Let’s embrace what makes them different, what’s so unique about who they are. Let’s not make apologies when they stand out, but smile because they don’t blend in. Let’s encourage them to be themselves. Let’s demand that the world make room for them instead of begging our children to shrink. Let’s look with pride upon the sore thumbs, the distinctive, the different. Let’s get to know who are different kids really are instead of trying to force society’s identity upon them. Okay, so they don’t fit in, they’re not like the others, they always draw attention or make things more difficult. And? So? They’re already aware they’re different, they’re not fooling anyone. The cat is out of the bag, so let’s let them live outside of the box.” ❤❤❤

5 Recipes for a Virtual American Road Trip Cincinnati Chili is one of my favorite dishes ever. This is a fun little way to experience new food!

Nature Study Hacking: Mammals My friend Joy released the latest ebook in her nature study series that goes along with The Handbook of Nature Study! I’ve mentioned these guides several times before, but for good reason as I have found them to be so helpful!

Inspiring Homeschool Rooms + Printable Supply List I love looking at the homeschool setups of other people. I have gotten some of my very best ideas for how to arrange our own space this way.

4 Words I Say to Myself to Lift Heavy Things “What’s lifting you today?”

From the blog…

Charlotte Mason Picture Study Aid: Johannes Vermeer I’ve mentioned in the past that I love the fact that I get to make art available to the homeschooling community and that is especially true in the case of Johannes Vermeer. He is one of my very favorite artists which is why I was excited to make a little announcement this week! I recently re-did the Johannes Vermeer Picture Study Aid that I offer and changed a few of the pieces as well as added an extra one and because it’s now no longer going along with the AmblesideOnline rotation, I’m able to offer prints as well! Every time I pull them out to ship them off to someone, I can’t get over how well this particular set turned out, and C now echos her mama in saying, “they’re just so pretty!” whenever she sees them.

(2019) Charlotte Mason Homeschool Kindergarten Plans (Take 2) It’s the season of planning and here’s a little recap of my plans for my daughter’s kindergarten year last year….

(2018) Charlotte Mason Homeschool Second Grade Term 1 Plans ….and my plans for son’s second grade year two years ago….

(2017) Charlotte Mason Homeschool First Grade Plans …as well as my plans for his first grade year three years ago.

(2014) Babies Don’t Keep I have been having a lot of nostalgia lately for my babies as B just turned ten last week. I miss those days of having littles around, but I know they were hard too. This post is a good reminder in so many ways.

Have a lovely weekend!

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Charlotte Mason Picture Study Aid: Johannes Vermeer https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-picture-study-aid-johannes-vermeer/ https://ahumbleplace.com/charlotte-mason-picture-study-aid-johannes-vermeer/#comments Mon, 17 Aug 2020 07:00:00 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=14730 To read more about Charlotte Mason picture study and to see the other Picture Study Aids I have available, click here. Johannes, or Jan, Vermeer, was born in Delft of the Dutch Republic and baptized there on October 31, 1632. He died 43 years later and was buried on December 15, 1675. From that span of […]

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To read more about Charlotte Mason picture study and to see the other Picture Study Aids I have available, click here.

Johannes, or Jan, Vermeer, was born in Delft of the Dutch Republic and baptized there on October 31, 1632. He died 43 years later and was buried on December 15, 1675. From that span of years, he left behind a widow, at least eight children, a treasure-trove of paintings showing intimate views of Delft, and little else, including hard facts about his life.

Where his fellow Dutchman, Rembrandt, bequeathed the world close to 100 pictures of himself, Vermeer gave us only one possible self-portrait contained off to the side in The Procuress. His signature is scattered among legal documents from the time and we can find quotes and even a poem about him from his contemporaries. He was promoted to the head of the Guild of St. Luke by his fellow painters in 1662 and we even have a detailed inventory of the items in his home after his death. However, from the man himself, we hear nothing. 

Or do we?

So little is known about his life and yet, in some ways, his paintings offer us the most intimate part of him: his view of the world. He let us into the rooms of his home where he lived out the relatively short years of his life, often giving us glimpses of family members, servants, and every-day objects found around the house. In View of Delft, he takes us on a walk along the canal, showing us a typical morning in his time. He allows us to experience an afternoon outside his door in The Little Street, complete with women attending their chores and children attending their games. And all of these snippets of time were recorded with a clarity of vision and depth of expression rarely seen at the time or even since.

Much conjecture exists about how he created these photographic-like scenes, though most scholars agree that he used some kind of viewing apparatus to aid in his work. However, what exactly he used and how much he relied upon it to create his masterpieces will most likely never be known. Theories have ranged from a camera obscura – a device that projects a scene from a brightly-lit area on to a flat surface in a dark room or box – to a more modern suggestion that he simply used a mirror. Still, despite the fact that his skill and eye for aesthetics are quite evident, many art historians are loathe to suggest that he used any kind of device at all, offended at the idea that he might, in some way, have “cheated.”

And while I think these debates are interesting and can add an element of intrigue to picture talks with older students, the beauty of Charlotte Mason’s principles in art study is that we, and our students, need not be caught up in these scholarly debates or question marks surrounding his life. When we look at his pieces, we can immerse ourselves in the serenity of his settings, the delicateness of his lighting, and the quotidian tasks of his models. We can ponder them together and imagine what the girl in the red hat is about to say or what the letter contains or wonder what thoughts run through the woman’s mind as she looks at the empty balance. These are pieces offering many opportunities for contemplation that will hang wonderfully in the “halls of [our] imagination” and, as Ms. Mason suggests, when doing our picture talks, “there must be knowledge and, in the first place, not the technical knowledge of how to produce, but some reverent knowledge of what has been produced; that is, children should learn pictures, line by line, group by group, by reading, not books, but pictures themselves.” (vol 6, p 214)

Today I’m offering an updated Johannes Vermeer Picture Study Aid (PDF and printed versions available!) with a brief summary of his life, key topics about seven of his paintings (four of which are different than the previous version I offered), and printable versions of the pieces discussed (without artist name or titles) at the end. There is also an option to purchase professionally printed copies of the pieces discussed as well.

Resources

Though there aren’t many concrete facts about Vermeer’s life, biographers and art historians have managed to piece details together based on quotes, legal documents, and general knowledge about Delft from the short span of his life there. A few of these books have been particularly helpful in putting together this picture study aid:

Traces of Vermeer by Jane Jelley also looked compelling, but because of time constraints, I chose to read Anthony Bailey’s biography over this one so I have no experience with it.

Also, the book Discovering the Great Masters by Paul Crenshaw is on the AO Year 12 book list and has a short write-up for The Art of Painting.

And for children:

  • The Vermeer Interviews: Conversations With Seven Works of Art by Bob Raczka – This would be good for older students or parents wanting to know more about the pieces. I would not recommend this for younger students. It includes The Milkmaid, The Geographer, The Art of Painting (titled “The Artist in His Studio”), and Woman in Blue Reading a Letter, among others.
  • Anna and Johanna by Geraldine Elschner – This is purely fictional and tells the “story” of two characters in Vermeer’s paintings (The Milkmaid and The Lacemaker).

There were a few others for children that looked interesting but I was unable to get from the library to review:

If you are interested in diving more into the debate about what he may have used to aid in his painting (camera obscura, mirror, etc.), the documentary Tim’s Vermeer is also very interesting.

Caveats

This is by no means an exhaustive analysis or study of each piece, and that is intentional. I tried to keep it all very simple in the spirit of there being, “no talk about schools of painting, little about style; consideration of these matters comes in later life, the first and most important thing is to know the pictures themselves. As in a worthy book we leave the author to tell his own tale, so do we trust a picture to tell its tale through the medium the artist gave it. In the region of art as else-where we shut out the middleman.” (vol 6 pg 216)

For enjoying art with children in general, I also included a page of art sources that I’ve found particularly good:

Online Art Collections

Web Gallery of Art
Art cyclopedia
Wikimedia Commons
WikiArt

Books

For younger children, I highly recommend the Mini-Master series by Julie Merberg and Suzanne Bober. Also, the Touch The Art series by Julie Appel and Amy Guglielmo.

For both younger and older children, the Come Look With Me series by Gladys S. Blizzard is excellent.

Download

You may download it below for personal use in your own homeschool (Ambleside Online, another Charlotte Mason curriculum, or otherwise). If you have any feedback or suggestions, please fill out this form!

Johannes Vermeer: a (FREE!) Charlotte Mason Picture Study Aid - ahumbleplace.com

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Weekend Entertainment: 14 August 2020 https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-14-august-2020/ https://ahumbleplace.com/weekend-entertainment-14-august-2020/#respond Fri, 14 Aug 2020 15:59:15 +0000 https://ahumbleplace.com/?p=64181 I received a jury summons back in March to appear on April 1st. When everything with COVID started happening, the last place I wanted to be was a crowded courthouse with how-many-other people serving on jury duty, and it was also during our homeschool year, so I asked for a postponement. I was originally told […]

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I received a jury summons back in March to appear on April 1st. When everything with COVID started happening, the last place I wanted to be was a crowded courthouse with how-many-other people serving on jury duty, and it was also during our homeschool year, so I asked for a postponement. I was originally told it would be July 7th and I’d get another summons 30 days before that, but it never came. I emailed the jury commission on July 6th (when I also found out that juries hadn’t been meeting since March 18th) and they said I had fulfilled my duty for the rest of 2020. Whew! What a relief! Until I got another summons a month later for August 12th, the day before my son’s birthday.

At this point, our county is only doing jury trials once per week and when I checked the August 5th group, none of them were asked to appear so I had high hopes the same would be true for my group. I had no such luck and on Wednesday, I showed up at the courthouse with 34 other people for the first jury trial my county has had since March. I told my husband the night before that I would be selected – I’m about as boring as you can get so I’m probably prime jury material.

Jury selection included a very large room with numbered chairs (we had to sit in our assigned seat) spaced six feet apart. There were plastic bags over the water fountains and only two people were allowed in the bathroom at a time. At one point, because they didn’t have the system down just yet, we were carrying our chairs around the room so we didn’t sit in the wrong chair. Five minutes into selection, a man raised his hand and said that he just found out that a friend of his was being tested for COVID at that very moment. He’d have the results on Thursday. Our summons said not to come if we had been around someone suspected to have COVID, so this was an unpleasant surprise. After all of this, I was selected along with five other people to serve on the jury.

The judge said the case, which was a traffic violation, should only last a day so I thought maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if I was chosen. I was actually interested in the process and if the summons had come at any other time (for both birthday and COVID reasons), I would’ve been glad to serve (well….depending on the case).

The trial ended up lasting two days. It involved a lot of social distancing (we were spread out over the jury box so we weren’t sitting near each other), hand sanitizer, and all-day masks (they’re mandatory in all public places here in Colorado). I kept holding on to hope on Wednesday afternoon that we could finish, but there were three expert witnesses in this case which I guess takes time. It was very, very interesting to be part of the judicial process, but it was also very, very sad for me to not be part of my son’s 10th birthday. He did wake up early and opened presents before I left, which I was so thankful to be part of, but I was gone until 4:30.

I didn’t get a chance to collect any links this week but I’m attempting to catch up on everything today. If I owe you an email or a package, I’ll get to it soon!

From the blog…

Charlotte Mason Picture Study Aid: Titian I finished the Picture Study Aid for Titian who is scheduled for Term 1 of the AmblesideOnline artist study rotation! You can download it for free!

(2019) Charlotte Mason Homeschool Third Grade Plans: Term 1 Our plans from last summer for the first term of my son’s third grade year!

(2017) Mesa Verde and Aztec Ruins Junior Ranger Adventures Mesa Verde is truly one of the best national parks we have here in Colorado. If you happen to be near southwestern Colorado, I highly recommend it!

(2014) A Daughter Without a Mom is a Mom to a Daughter I grew up without a mom and didn’t meet my mother for the first time until I was 29. When I found out my second child was going to be a girl, there was cause for more than just a little anxiety on my part….but I was also very excited.

(2013) The World Through B’s Eyes: August 2013 B received a little camera for his second birthday and immediately began snapshotting the world. I’m so glad I recorded these views from when he was so tiny.

(2012) The New Adventures in Camping. Our first camping trip after becoming parents! Relatively uneventful, but given our track record with camping, I was okay with that.

Have a lovely weekend!

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