Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Making some changes

Because sometimes life requires it right?! When we found out that we were expecting our 5th baby I quickly became overcome with this one thought, "Lord, how am I going to get it all done?" I was well aware of how many times I'd felt overwhelmed already but with the realization of another addition, well, no amount of excitement could remove the feeling of inadequacy from my mind.

So, I began praying-no pleading with the Lord to show me what to do, to give me direction. And you know what, He did.

He showed me what to do, and what changes needed to be made. Now I'll be honest with you, although most of what the Lord showed me that needed changing were things that I knew needed attention, there was one area that I was very hesitant about-textbooks. Yes, textbooks.

For the past few years I had happily studied and put into practice all I could from a "literature rich" education. We've used living books, narration, notebooks etc. to enhance our learning and now, and now I knew the Lord was calling me to make a change-a change that I wasn't sure that I was willing to make.

Textbooks-from what I'd read-had always been a "no-no" for a fun learning environment. They were the culprits of stealing the love of learning from children and replacing it with a disdain for "school." At least that's the impression that I took away from all those articles, workshops and blogs.

However, after talking things over with McPop, praying about it and thinking through things, I bowed my will to the Lord. I wasn't 100% happy but I knew that this was the Lord and that "His ways are not our ways." I knew that in following Him I would not be making any mistakes.

So yes, we are making changes here at Ruby Slippers School (gotta change that name too!!). We are going to a more traditional, textbook based homeschool. Can I tell you since I've began implementing these changes the Lord has been blessing all around! More on that in another post. But for now, this is what we will be using here for our 2011/2012 school year:

For the Big Girls:
Christian Light Education (CLE) Math
CLE Language Arts
A Beka History 4
A Beka Science 4
Literature-Christian Novel Studies 
Penmanship-Peterson Directed Handwriting-Cursive
Missionary/Geography Studies-Put together byMcMama! I'll share what we are doing at a later time.

Even though Big Sis is only in 2nd grade she is still able to keep up with the 4th grade history and science. We do tweak the curriculum to fit our needs. I'll explain in a later post how we are using those texts in our schooling.

Phonics-Reading Made Easy and Phonics Tutor as an additional supplement (I picked up the student reader and CD-Rom for free so I decided to put it to good use!!)
Math-Right Start Level B
Penmanship-Peterson Directed Handwriting
He tags along with our history, science and missionary studies. Though Christian Liberty Press has a great new history text out for the little ones that looks sweet. No money for that yet but I'd love to look into that more!

Animal Play-Teach Me Joy
Lots of activity bags-that I've yet to use!!!! Ugh!!!

We also still have our read-alouds as a family. Can't get away from those!!

So that is what we are doing. We have already started our school year so that we can take some time off when the baby comes. Things are going well so far but I'm not going to elaborate too much as I feel it is still too early in the game to say what has worked and what hasn't.

Anyway, that is what we are doing, have any of you began making your new year plans yet? Share 'em with us!

Lovin' Learnin'


  1. Congratulations Krissy! I did not know you were expecting again. We are too, I am due around Thanksgiving. Will find out tomorrow who this little person is!

    Hope all is well for you!

  2. Don't you just love it when the Lord shoves you out of your comfort zone???

    Then - don't you love it even more when you OBEY and He blesses and blesses and blesses???

    He is so good to us, isn't He?

    I think you have a wonderful plan there! And good for you for getting a head start before your new little blessing makes his/her appearance.

    Will be praying for you, as you continue to follow His leading,

  3. Laine: Thanks! Yes, we are due at the end of August!! I heard that you were expecting. SO happy for you all!! I'm sure the kiddos are excited!

    Alesha: Yes, the Lord has a way of testing our obedience doesn't He? But He blesses beyond measure when we take that step of faith and follow Him!!

    Thanks to both of you for stopping by!!!

  4. Hey! What is it you like about the language arts curriculum you chose? We are needing to move away from ABeka language, and I'm searching for something good that is not overwhelming.

  5. God bless you. Found your blog while looking for ideas to make reading The Sword in the Tree. May just make our first lap book!
    Congrats on the newest blessing growing inside you. I have six children ages 17 - 5. With God's grace it all gets done! I realize that these children belong to God and He will provide for them all that is needed. I am HIS helper! He will not allow the good work begun in my home school to not be completed. This is His will, I simply obey. Enjoy the blessings headed your way.!

  6. Congrats mama!

    We have made some changes for next year also. We'll be using CLE for math and LA too!I just felt like God was calling us in a new direction. We've decided against using HOD next year.

    For my dd going into 2nd:
    History-Beautiful Feet
    Science-Weekly Readers Just Ask series
    Reading-Rod and Staff
    Writing/narration-Writing with Ease
    Bible-my own mix of things!

    My dd who will be in K:
    History and science are the same as older sister
    Math-Singapore essentials
    Phonics-Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
    Handwriting-A Reason for Handwriting
    Bible-same as above.

  7. Blessings to you! I, too, love teaching through literature. I was shocked last year when I felt prompted to use CLE for some subject. Long story short, I ended up loving it. May I suggest you take a look at the CLE reading also? At the intermediate and upper grade levels, CLE consists of only FIVE seventeen-lesson lightunits that coordinate with a hardbound reader of enjoyable stories. I DID NOT want to like this curriculum. I DID NOT want to. But my daughter LOVED it. She already spends much time memorizing verses for AWANA, so we didn't worry too much about the "story verses" they included in quizzes and tests. I did, after much foot dragging, feel like she learned quite a few things about story structure, vocabulary, poetry analysis, and literary evaluation by using the lightunits. What I liked best, though, was that the units only cover 1/2 of the school year. We would do a 17-day lightunit, followed by a 17-day literature study, then alternated through all five lightunits and five novel studies...for a total of 170 days. We truly enjoyed the novelunits from BJUP (Her favorite novelunit was Jenny Wren, though her favorite NOVEL was Peanut Butter Friends in a Chop Suey World.) Just thought I'd pass on what worked for us. This year, we're back to DITHOR. But, as much as I wanted to NOT LIKE clp.com's reading units, my daughter loved them and truly learned a lot.

  8. Howdy! Just wanted to let you know that I've linked your blog repeatedly through my new blog I'm setting up. Just click on pretty much any of the tabs along the top and you'll see a reference to you and your workboxes and HOD inspiration.

    Blessings to you on your new homeschool path and with your new wee one coming to join your family :)

    Hillary At Home


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