End of the Year Musings

I'm so excited because, including today, we have nine more days of bookwork! We have fourteen days remaining until we hit 180, but five of those are educational field trips, so no bookwork then.

The best find this year was Michael Clay Thompson's language arts series. Around the time there began to be a lot of buzz about it, I was feeling frustrated with most of our language arts curriculum. We had just finished Writing Tales 2 and began Classical Writing Homer A. Homer was excruciating. It was taking a lot of time every day, yet it didn't feel like it was developing skills particularly quickly. EG didn't feel like she was learning anything new.

Similarly, I could see that she wasn't having good retention with our vocabulary program (Vocabulary from Classical Roots) or grammar (Junior Analytical Grammar). No matter how much I wanted each of these programs to work for us, and I did, the facts were staring me in the face - they just weren't working for EG!

I knew what curriculums did work well for her, so I had a good idea of the type of curriculum for which I was looking. Luckily, along came all those discussions about MCT. Looking at the discussions and the samples, I realized that it just might be a good fit - and I was, thankfully, right.

What about Classical Writing? After all, it wasn't that she wasn't learning. It was just going painfully slowly. Yet, I wanted the progym for EG...

Around the same time, I listened to SWB's writing lectures on mp3 - each individual one for the three stages. I also reread WTM for the billionth time. After reading, listening, digesting, and ruminating, I felt confident enough to stop Classical Writing and move forward "WTM-style." We'll get to the progym, around 8th or 9th grade. She'll be able to move faster through it (something that we'll appreciate) and have the time now to do more cross-curricular writing and other important things. It was a balance with which I felt (and still feel) comfortable.

So that's our best curriculum find of the year. :)


Smrt Mama said...

Learning to let go of curricula that wasn't working for me is the thing over which I'm the proudest of myself this year!

Anonymous said...

We have also been learning to let go of things that aren't working for us. And thanks to you, I've been willing to get my feet wet in classical a little more (I had intended to go classical/WTM from the start, but having to put everything together myself intimidated me, so we went with Sonlight) and I am trying out the MCT stuff for next year instead of Sonlight's extremely mediocre LA. :)

Kash said...

If you go on the WTM boards and look at "Colleen in NS" posts, she has some really good ones on the *process* and *skills* of WTM, and focusing on that as opposed to hewing to the content and losing the skills. The point being, you might find some great info on integrating more WTM-ish stuff and still using Sonlight.

And YAY! MCT! :D

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