Jul 23, 2016

The Road Less Traveled

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There are many approaches to homeschool.

There are even many ways to homeschool using the Charlotte Mason method.

It is my understanding that most sane Charlotte Mason-ish moms use prepared curriculum outlines like they have at Ambleside Online.

Or they use the beautifully organized planner at Simply Charlotte Mason.

But me?

Let me just put it this way: I am incapable of doing ANYTHING the "easy" way.

It is just not in the fabric of my being to do so.

I am the queen of customizing EVERYTHING.

I tweak things, I adapt things, and I mess with things until they are unrecognizable from where they began.

Maybe it's the stubborn, bratty little girl inside me, but I simply can't leave well enough alone.

So, guess what? I have been creating our homeschool plan all summer, and I'm STILL planning.


I could not leave well enough alone, and am in the throes of making The Simple-- well, Difficult.

You can always count on me!!!

What the heck is my problem?

Here are my issues with following the simple and straightforward:
  1. The resources at Ambleside Online are really mostly amazing, and I know that many women have put countless hours into organizing everything-- especially for the younger grades.

    That being said, there are also many things that I just can't assign to my kids. Being LDS (Mormon) and doing all I can to raise my children in my faith, I cannot in good conscience read anti-Mormon books to my little ones.

    Now, I could skip those passages that specifically refer to my faith, but if that is the viewpoint of the author, my trust in the resource is gone.

  2. Another thing: most of the books recommended in the upper grades are all about Christian missionaries and are not the classical resources I was really hoping my kids would learn. While the younger grades all have rigorous academic work and books, the upper grades seem totally devoted to reinforcing Christian beliefs, and leave academics to the past.

    I have NOTHING against strengthening the faith and beliefs of my children. Goodness knows how much my youth need it! But as LDS members, we already have so many resources available to us as members for teaching and reinforcing our beliefs, that I already have it covered.

    I need a list of the classics and great works of ancient and modern thinkers which will challenge and enrich all the great things that my kids learned in the earlier years. And I have not yet been able to find the list of books that fits what I want my teens to leave our homeschool knowing.

  3. I have MANY children. I refuse to plan for each one, grade by grade.

    That's crazy talk, right there.

    If I were to plan according to grade, I would run stark mad from my house to register them all in Montessori or other charter schools tomorrow.

    I know my limits, and I will be COMBINING all the lessons I can, thank you very much. Interestingly enough, I will be following dear Charlotte's example by splitting my kids into three lovely, manageable levels. She called them Form 1, Form 2, and Form 3. I have my own names for them, but I will share those in a future post. ;-)

  4. There are many, many resources out there, I know. My choices are not limited to those I have listed above. Frankly, I guess I must have "trust issues." I just want some things very specific for my kids.

    That, and I have OCD. Oh, so much OCD...

Adventure Is Out There!

So, what am I doing, then?

I'm so glad you asked!

I am starting from almost-scratch.

I am taking the things that worked for us last year, and I am adding to it. I'm tweaking it. Messing with it. Jumbling it up, and throwing out the things I don't like. I'm adding the things I miss and some new things I always wanted to try.

I am stepping onto the "road less traveled," and it gives me a little tingly thrill of excitement to imagine the adventure ahead of me!

I thought you might like to join me, so I plan to blog weekly to share a bit of what I'm doing.

In the end, I plan to make everything available here on this website. Heck, it might all turn into a book, if I get my act together.

Thank you for sharing in the journey with me!

Ambitiously yours,

Mama Rachel