Monday, May 6, 2013

Catholic Homeschooling for May

Since May is traditionally a month to especially honor the Blessed Mother, it makes sense to incorporate Marian themes into our homeschooling. During our lesson time this afternoon, Beezy asked me if there was church today. She was disappointed when I told her no, saying, "But I wanted to have the bread and wine again." What fragrant balm this is for a mother's heart! I will take her to daily Mass on Wednesday morning.

At the time Beezy asked this question, she was doing her copy work from the Salve Regina (Hail Holy Queen) prayer, said at the end of the Rosary. For narration, I am reading to her from St. Therese and the Roses (Ignatius Press), which includes Mary's visitation to St. Therese of Lisieux. This is a biographical novel and fits into the religion/history/literature categories. For reading, we are using Book Two of the American Cardinal readers, and the first story talks about Mary's birth and childhood. I read to Beezy from the Bible on the Transfiguration of Jesus from the Gospel of Luke, and we prayed that Luminous Mystery of the Rosary. The only non-Catholic part of lesson time today was a "Time & Money" worksheet!

For summer I do want to continue to work on Beezy's reading, pray the Rosary daily, and go to Mass as much as possible. As a Catholic mother, I am increasingly realizing the importance of structured lessons that provide Faith formation while also supplying my child with the tools she will need to pursue her interests and goals in life, to learn to think for herself, and to express herself competently both orally and in writing. Direct teaching is necessary to Catholic homeschooling, even if there is a certain focus on facilitating child-led learning. With the Charlotte Mason/classical approach, there is plenty of time in the day for play, chores, socializing, projects, nature studies, handicrafts, conversations, dog walks, meals, etc., and even daydreaming. What is required is the balance brought about by discipline, which I suspect is going to be an upcoming series topic here at Organic Mothering, so stay tuned!

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