Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Courage Copywork (Free LDS Copywork)

Copywork for LDS (Mormon) homeschool families.  This copywork packet is based on the theme of Courage and is filled with scripture and quotes about courage from LDS church leaders.

I'm delighted to share with you the first post in what I hope will be a series you love!  Each month I am going to share FREE copywork based around a gospel topic.  This month's packet is all about courage. (If you're wondering what copywork is, this is a great explanation).

We love to use copywork in our home as a way to practice penmanship as well as to memorize beautiful and uplifting words. Of course, you don't have to be a homeschooling family to use copywork. This is a perfect activity for a quiet Sunday afternoon and you could also use it with your children each morning or evening as part of your family scripture study. 

This packet includes ten different quotes, in styles appropriate for three ability levels: tracing letters, guided writing and fluent writing.

How to use copywork in your homeschool:

We spend a few minutes on copywork each day during our Morning Time.  My 4 year old is still learning letters and correct letter formation, but he loves to work alongside his older siblings. He may only finish a word or two, but that's okay. We just pick up the next day where we left off. My 9 year old son does not love copywork, but he does see the benefit as his handwriting had drastically improved recently. Just a few minutes a day really adds up. My 13 year old daughter loves to write and has beautiful penmanship, so she has moved on to just copying quotes into her own journal simply because of the beautiful words.

I'd love to see how your family puts this packet to use. Share a picture and tag me on Instagram!

Download Free Courage Copywork

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Friday, June 15, 2018

What I've been Reading Lately: June 2018

Our family has gone on two long road trips this month, making lots of time for audiobooks together in the car and lots of downtime to read when we arrive at our destination.  What have you been reading lately?

Persuasion by Jane Austen

This was a re-read for my book club.  I love the ending, it always makes me happy. But I definitely want the first third of the book to move along much more quickly than it does. And maybe it's just because I haven't spent as much time with the characters, but I don't adore them like I do Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy, or Emma. Still, Jane Austen has stood the test of time for a reason.

At Home in the World by Tsh Oxenreider

Here's what I wrote on Instagram after finishing this book: I'm all starry-eyed after finishing 'At Home In The World' yesterday. I've never found a better explanation for my love of adventures and my simultaneous love of home. So good. While part of me would love to be nomadic world-wanderers full time, that's just not a good fit for us right now. So we fill up our calendar with smaller trips, within a few hours of home, and make the most of long weekends. And every so often we can pull off a bigger trip.

Feeling happy and all fueled up for our family adventure this weekend. ❤️

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool

I have heard such great things about this book, and have even checked it out from the library multiple times without even cracking it open.  I'm so glad I finally read it! This coming of age novel is full of sweet friendships, well-developed characters and a little bit of mystery thrown in. 

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by Grace Lin

I read this aloud to my older kids and we all completely loved it.  It's full of adventure, engaging stories and a little bit of magic.  My 9 year old son who usually would rather be playing outside as soon as possible, begged for more chapters each morning we read. Well written and sweet.  A definite favorite.

To the Bright Edge of the World by Eowyn Ivey

I loved this book!  I read it on a recent trip and there were a couple of days that I did little besides read this engrossing book. I'm a little bit obsessed with Alaska (our trip there a couple of years ago is what started the obsession, and now I'm reading everything I can that's set in Alaska... any recommendations?)  This book is a sweet love story intermingled with an adventurous expedition in the early days of exploring Alaska.  It's told through journal entries and letters, a tactic I love when done well. This is probably my favorite book of the past month.   (Also, if you haven't read her first book, The Snow Child, you really should.)


Beezus and Ramona, Ramona the Pest, Ramona the Brave, Ramona and her Father by Beverly Cleary

We've been driving a lot lately (a camping trip to southern Colorado and a family vacation to southern California) and have been listening to The Ramona Quimby Audio Collection in the car.  We have quite an age span (teen to toddler plus two adults) and every single one of us loves listening to these books.  Even my almost two year old will as for it, "'Mona?" (Yes, she's the cutest.)  Ramona reminds us all a great deal of our little Elijah, he's constantly doing things like taking one bite out of all of our apples and so we feel a deep affinity with the Quimby family.  These books are modern classics for a reason. We're only about halfway through the collection and I love that there's so much more to listen to.

Head to Modern Mrs. Darcy for more Quick Lit Book Reviews.

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Saturday, June 2, 2018

Our Summer Homeschool Morning Time Plans

Our plans for homeschooling during the summer.  We homeschool year round (and love it!) and these are the family read alouds and assigned books we'll be enjoying this summer.

 After our family road trip to Mesa Verde last week, summer is officially here! While we do take a break from official homeschooling for about 3 weeks each summer, I've found that sticking with our routine is better for everyone.  We're all happier with a little bit of added structure in the summer.

Homeschool Morning Time

Morning Time has been the single most influential thing we've implemented in our homeschool.  The tradition of gathering each morning to read good books and learn together is something I will treasure forever.  Is it always easy and beautiful? Heavens, no.  Do we occasionally have grumpy children (and a grumpy Mama)? Actually, I'd say that happens often.  But it's still absolutely worth the time and effort required. 

Our summers are usually full of camping trips, family vacations and enjoying as much time outside as possible, as well as daily swim team practice, soccer practices and music lessons.  Before we head out the door, we gather together for a few minutes to read from good books.

Summer Homeschool Plans

We homeschool year round, though our summer plans are quite a bit more relaxed than during the official school year. Read more about that here. Basically, we do a very simple Morning Time and a little bit of independent work each day (reading, math, language arts).

The books I plan to read aloud this summer include:

A Wrinkle in Time (we're currently about halfway through and need to finish this up)
The Birchbark House (this is our selection for our homeschool family book club!)


In addition, we'll slowly work our way through the last section of The Good and the Beautiful History Year 1. We're loving this curriculum, by the way.  It's simple and effective and so well done. It's definitely taken us longer than a school year to finish Year 1, but I'm hoping we'll have it completed by the end of the summer and begin Year 2 in the fall.

We'll also read a page from the gorgeous Animalium book a couple of times per week.

And I'm hoping to make it through Draw Europe a couple of times before the end of the summer.

Ellie (13) is a voracious reader and will be using her extra time this summer to devour a whole stack of books. But I do give her "assigned" books as well.  Titles that she may not pick up on her own, but that I believe she will enjoy and learn from. This summer she will be reading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, (happy sigh... it's one of my all time favorite) The Call of the Wild  and Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl.

Ethan (9) is less enthusiastic about reading than his older sister. So I just let him choose pretty much whatever book strikes his fancy (within reason).  He's currently loving The Boxcar Children and the Amulet Series.

With 'The Littles', Elijah (4) and Edith (1.5), we just read lots and lots and lots of picture books.

Audiobooks in the Car:

We love listening to books together in the car while we are out adventuring.  The past few weeks we've been LOVING the Ramona Quimby Audio Collection.  And I mean loving; everyone begs for it as soon as we get in the car.  That's a good sign!

I'm hoping we'll get to listen to Green Ember soon, too.

Do you have any audiobook recommendations for us?

If you liked this Homeschool Morning Time post, you may also like:

Why We Homeschool Year Round
Our 2017-2018 Homeschool Plan
Our Homeschool Day In the Life
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