Sunday, August 24, 2014

Not Yet Back to School

Although most of the local schools, and many homeschoolers, have hit the books in their new school year, we have not.  We aren't quite ready yet, for a number of reasons.

1.  We just aren't ready to say goodbye to Summer.  It seems to pay us such a short visit each year, so we want to extend it as long as possible!

2.  We took a later than usual vacation combined with business trips that kept us away for almost a month.  We returned in mid August still unprepared for school.

3.  Due to being away from home, I did not order some of our school books until we returned.  No books, no school!  Some are in transit now.

4.  We have one more trip planned before we can jump in with both feet.  This one is to visit out-of-state family.  Before this trip, we will go ahead with a gentle start.  After the trip, it's full-speed ahead!  At least I hope so.

There are many changes for us this year.  Our oldest is going into high school.  High school!  My, how time has quickly passed!  At first, I was scared out of my mind just thinking about high school.  I'm still a little scared, but I am blessed with comfort and assurance.  More on that later.

Since I now have a high-schooler, my kids will no longer be working together, at least not like they were previously.  I'm learning though, that in some ways, this is a good thing.  Sometimes (maybe many times), I think Emily (my oldest) would much prefer grabbing her history book to read on her own so she can get it done, rather than wait until we are all ready to read it together.

Katie will cycle back through MFW, and will begin Exploring Countries and Cultures.  She wasn't officially in school when we went through it the first time, so it will be mostly new to Katie.  I'm planning to include Emily in the geography, but I haven't figured out all those details just yet.

We aren't using MFW for high school because it didn't fit in with our entire needs package.  At co-op, Emily is enrolled in science, ancient biblical history, composition, and a finance class.  I couldn't justify paying for a packaged curriculum knowing we wouldn't use even half of it.

Purchase Exploring World History

We chose to use Notgrass World History (NWH), which happens to be what MFW uses in high school (can't veer too far off the beaten path!).  We will not likely complete the literature element of Notgrass since Emily will fulfill that in her composition class at co-op.  Based on my overview in the Notgrass books, I'm starting to see how well MFW has prepared us for high school.  More importantly, I'm witnessing God's hand in our homeschooling journey.  It's so exciting!

This brings me to mention the blessings of comfort and assurance I am feeling.  God has a unique plan in all of our lives, and He reveals pieces of it when He knows we are ready to receive them.  It's like putting a puzzle together.  Our character is built piece by piece.  Sometimes, those pieces fit the first time we try them.  Other times, they don't, and we must remove the piece and try it in another spot later on.  I'm finding this is true of some books that were introduced last year and prior, that we weren't quite ready for yet.  We had the "piece" but it just didn't fit in that place at that time.  So, we put the piece aside until we find the spot where it fits.  I feel like this is the year that some of those books will fit.  Last year, or even just months ago, I felt like a failure for not using those books.  Now, I see God's plan with them.  And it is good because God is good!

So, as we begin to begin this new school year, I'm choosing to lean more on God for guidance, support, comfort, assurance, and love, all of which I've relied too heavily on humans, including myself, to provide first.

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