Wednesday, September 18, 2013

And what is is that you do, Dearie?

I just saw this post on a major homeschool vendor's Facebook Page. Presumably, is in answer to people who look at homeschool moms when they are out and about and they ask what you do. This is the answer:


"I am the administrator/instructor of an exclusive, multi-grade academy designed for the express purpose of enhancing genius and maximizing potential in a select group of creative children.  And what do you do, Dearie?"

I guess this might be funny if it weren't so sad. It is meant to be funny and to show that a homeschooling mom is worth more than...than what? Than the lady at the bank? At Wal-Mart? The receptionist at the doctor's office?   Is in meant to insinuate that their job that is not near as important as a stay-at-home homeschooling mom's job? Is it meant to  "put them in their place" as it were, because they think the homeschooling mom's job is not valuable  because she doesn't get a paycheck?

The problem with this is, and why I don't find it even remotely funny, is something that my mom taught me when I was a young child,

 "You don't make yourself big, by making others look small."

Why do we have to make ourselves look big? Why are we so fragile and bothered that most of the folks in our culture seem to equate importance with a paycheck? Why do we feel the need to make others think we are important by giving ourselves big important sounding jobs?

I really don't get it. We all have jobs to do. We are all part of society and play our part. God made each of us in his image, is it really important that I try to prove how important I really am? Or that I think I am?

If someone asks, "What do you do, Dearie?" can't we just say that we homeschool our kids, smile and ask them to have a nice day? Perhaps we could ask them if their family is doing OK? Can we be a bit gentle with each other and not try to top each other? I have to believe when someone asks that question that they really want to know what we do.

 Let us be gracious and kind as we tell them about the joy of educating our children and then ask them what gives them joy.

Take care,

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

My more recent blog posts...

I realize I have neglected this blog for quite a while and I intend to get back to it, but I did want to share that my latest blog posts, the ones I do for Sonlight Curriculum, can be found here:

Take care,
One of the things that keeps me busy: spending time with my family. This picture is in southern Indiana for a Maple Syrup festival. From left to right: daughter in law Sharon, me, daughter Kari.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

American History Books to supplement Core D+E...

If you are not using Sonlight Curriculum, this post probably won't mean much to you, but I get asked this question all the time,

"I am doing Core D+E, the condensed American History study, and I would like to know some more great books my kids can read that will go along with it."

My answer has always been to look at the catalog;  look at all the books used in Core D (the first year of  American history) and Core E (the second year of American history) and get all the books that aren't used in the condensed version (D+E).

To make things easier for my customers, I have done the work for you. Here is a list of all the books not used in Core D+E but which are used in D and E separately. I should note that not all these books pertain to American History, but they are engaging books for children 8-11 years old.)

If you would like the complete list of the books used in Sonlight's program, you can email me for a free catalog. This would make a great resource for you even if you aren't homeschooling. Summer or family readers anyone?

Core D books not used in Core D+E:

History Books

Read Aloud Books
Readers--Regular and Advanced
Core E books not used in Core D+E:

I hope this is helpful to you and I pray that you and your children will have wonderful conversations about these stories as you learn together.


Sunday, May 19, 2013

If you want a great preschool program...

Try Sonlight's P4/5. Not only are the books outstanding and the Developing the Early Learner books wonderful, but the activities were carefully written to be fun and to develop small and large motor coordination.

I wrote the activities and I like to think of them as "Fun with a Purpose."

 The daily activities in P4/5 are not all just fun. Some are fun things that reinforce what you have read but just as many, and possibly more, are to help kids develop fine and large muscle coordination. The fine motor/muscle coordination will help them as they learn to write, but they need to develop those muscles and refine their movements.

When I wrote the activities for P4/5 I looked at a host of state standards for children 4-6 years old, look at ideas from Montessori and many other venues to come up with fun activities that will help children meet milestones for things like skipping, hopping, peddling  tossing and catching a ball and so on. In addition to that, I wrote in many, many activities to help strengthen small motor coordination: using tweezers, pinching cotton balls, picking up beans and other small items and so forth. These are NOT random activities. They were well thought out and researched activities included to help parents help children be well rounded, well coordinated individuals.

Many people think they are fluff, but they aren't. If  you have a child who is reading but not writing or finds it difficult to do the actual work of putting paper to pencil, I encourage you to go at the child's speed, dictate to you, perhaps wait and do it when they are older, etc. But, in addition to that, I encourage you to do the activities in P4/5 to strengthen small muscles to help the children to have more precision in those skills.

I also consulted with a preschool teacher and a preschool teacher of kids with special needs to get their recommendations for fun, successful activities that children love and that help develop muscles and coordination. All these things I incorporated into the P4/5 activities

. I combed developmental activity books looking for just the right activities to be sure all the state standards were met. I didn't do this because I think the "state" is like the Wizard of Oz, but because their standards made sense, seemed logical, well thought out and reasonable to me. In addition I did licensed home day care in the state of Florida for five years. Their standards were high and I had to take continuing education classes to maintain my license. Some of the classes reinforced my belief that kids need to play and need it in order to develop the necessary foundational skills to be successful in higher level learning. [ If it matters to you, I did earn a teaching degree years ago.] 

I think it is so important and that is why I spent so much time researching how to do this in a fun way. I have encouraged frustrated moms and dads to do the activities to help their child develop fine and large motor skills and they have been thankful.

Many parents NEED someone to teach them how to play with their kids and how to help children develop these skills, and I think these activities are worthwhile and will help any parent in this area. 

Can you tell I am passionate about this? 


Sunday, May 5, 2013

Retired Sonlight® Book List, Updated for 2013

Retired Sonlight® Books, a list... (See note at bottom)

Core P3/4
Fiction, Fairy Tales, and Fun for Little Learners
A Robert McCloskey Collection (3 Stories) (swapped for Make Way for McCloskey. 8 Stories)

Core P4/5
Exploring God’s Word (Level Pre.K or Core B):
25 Stories for Little People ~ cassette
101 Favorite Children's Songs ~ cassette
A Bear Called Paddington – Bond
A Family Treasury of Little Golden Books - (Buell)
A Treasury of Children’s Literature – Elsen
Children’s Choice Bible – Chancellor
Curious George ~ Rey (early edition used in 1994-1995)
Emperor's New Clothes ~ ?
Ken Taylor's Favorite Bible Stories ~ Taylor (earlier edition of Family Time Bible in Pictures)
Let's Talk about Animals ~ published by Ladybird
Mother Goose Classic ~ Volland edition
My First Encyclopedia ~ Watson
Noah's Ark ~ Spier
Opposites ~ Tyler and Gee
Peter and the Wolf / R Maltby Presents the Orchestra's Instruments ~ 2 cassettes
Real Mother Goose – illust by Blanche Fisher Wright
Richard Scarry's Busy, Busy World ~ Scarry
Right Choices – Taylor
Shapes ~ Usborne
Tall Book of Fairy Tales, The ~ Vance
Tall Book of Nursery Tales, The ~ Rojankovsky
Treasury of Little Golden Books
Ugly Duckling, The ~ ?
You Read to Me, I’ll Read to You (same pub as 20th Century Children’s Treasury)

Core A-Intro to the World: Cultures (Previously named Core K or Core C):
A Boy, A Dog, A Frog ~ Mercer Mayer
Alice's Adventure in Wonderland (Illustrated Condensed) ~ Carrol
Apple and the Arrow, The - Buff
Capyboppy – Peet
Chimney Sweep's Ransom: John Wesley ~ Jackson
Family Under the Bridge, The – Carlson
Granny Han’s Breakfast (Groves)
Hero Tales (Jackson)
Johnny Appleseed (different author) - Kellogg
Johnny Appleseed (different author) - Holland
Kidnapped by River Rats: William and Catherine Booth ~ Jackson
My Book about Hudson: Hudson Taylor ~ Miller
Poems to Read to the Very Young ~ Frank
Stop that Ball – McClintock
Winnie the Pooh - Milne
Wizard of Oz - Baum

Core B- Intro to World History, Part 1 (Previously named Core 1)

Bandit of Ashley Downs: George Mueller – Jackson
Fables – Lobel
Flight of the Fugitives - Jackson
Follow My Leader – Garfield
From Arapesh to Zuni ~ Lewis (Replaced with From Akebu to Zapotec)
Half Magic ~ Eager
Heidi (condensed version) – Spyri
Hero Tales. Vol. III ~ Jackson
Hidden Jewel, The: Amy Carmichael ~ Jackson
Leah's Song ~ Clifford
Now We are Six ~ Milne
Prince & the Pauper (abridged ed.) - Twain
Queen's Smuggler, The: William Tyndale ~ Jackson
Robin Hood of Sherwood Forest – McGovern
Shoeshine Girl - Bulla
Thieves of Tyburn Square: Elizabeth Fry – Jackson
To the Top - Kramer
Velveteen Rabbit – Williams

Core C-Intro to World History: Part 2 (Previously name Core 2):
A Child’s Garden of Verses (Stevenson)
A Little Princess - Burnett
A Poke in the I - Janeczko
Alexander the Great – Green
* Alexander the Great ~ Wepman ...SL lists the authors as Wepman & Ash. We were unable to find a book written by both of these authors. We found 2 separate titles:
1: Alexander the Great : Empire Builder ~ Maureen Ash
2 :Alexander the Great (World Leaders Past & Present) ~ Dennis Wepman, Arthur M .Schlesinger
Ben & Me - Lawson
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – Fleming
Explorer's News – Johnstone
Fine Print: A Story About Johann Gutenberg ~ Burch (also used in, then drop from, Core 6)
Florence Nightingale ~ (author not detailed in catalog)
Gladys Aylward ~ Swift
Hans Brinker, Condensed ~ Dodge
How our Bible Came to Us ~ Daney
Indian in the Cupboard – Banks
Joan of Arc ~ Stanley
Kildee House – Montgomery
Little House in Rocky Ridge - MacBride
Magellan – Brewster
Old Ramon – Schaefer
Ordinary Princess, The – Kaye
Shadrach – DeJong
Swiss Family Robinson, Condensed ~ Wyss
Treasure in an Oatmeal Box ~ Gire
Trial by Poison: Mary Slessor - Jackson
Trojan Horse, The – Little
You Can Change the World ~ Johnstone (updated to the new book called Window on the World, same author)
2012 Switch:
Ginger Pye – (Estes) (moved to Grade 4-5 reader package)

Core D-Intro to American History: Part 1 (Previously named Core 3):

A Twister of Twists, A Tangle of Tongues ~ A Schwartz
American Adventures I – Greenberg
A Drinking Gourd - Monjo
Bold Journey – Bohner
Boone, Wilderness Explorer ~ Retan
Can't You Make Them Behave, King George? – Fritz
Columbus ~ D'Aulaire
Erie Canal, The – Stein
Every Day With God – Nichols (?)
Fish do the Strangest Things ~ Hornblow
Flight of the Fugitive ~ Jackson
Giant Treas'ry of Brer Rabbit ~ JC Harris
Hannah - Whelan
Hopeful Trout & Other Limericks - Ciardi
Imprisoned in the Golden City: Adoniram & Ann Judson – Jackson
In God We Trust – Crater & Hunsicker
Insects do the Strangest Things ~ Hornblow
Landmark History of the American People {replaced with From Plymouth to the West, updated version of Landmark Book ~ Boorstin}
Martha Washington (Childhood of Famous Americans) – Wagoner
Mother West Winds Children - Burgess
Paddle-to-the-Sea - Holling
Poem Stew - Cole
Secret of the Andes – Clark
Silver ~ Whelan
Story of the Lone Star Republic, The - Stein
Story of the USA, Book 1 ~ Franklin Escher
Story of the USA, Book 2 ~ Franklin Escher
War of 1812, The - Morris
2012 Switch:
The Story of Eli Whitney - (Latham) (switched from Hist to advanced reader)

Core E-Intro to American History: Part 2 (Previously named Core 4):
A Bundle of Beasts ~ Hooper
All Sail Set – Sperry
American Adventures 1 – Greenberg
American Adventure 2 - Greenberg
American Wars: World War 1 – Stewart
An Arkful of Animals - Cole
Behind Rebel Lines - Reit
Bolivar – Guyatt
Bully for You Teddy Roosevelt - Fritz
California Gold Rush (Landmark) ~ McNeer
Canada ~ Sabin
Canada the Land - Kalman
Cheaper By the Dozen – Gilbreth
Churcaro: Wild Pony of the Pampa – (Kalnay)
Day it Rained Forever, The ~ Gross
Dog Jack - Biros
Every Living Thing ~ Rylant
Flame Across the Susquehanna – Banner
Great Depression, The ~ Stein
He Free Britain's Slaves: William Wilberforce ~ Ludwig
If You Lived at the Time of the Great San Francisco Earthquake – Levine
Landmark History of the American People {replaced with, From Ft Sumter to the Moon, updated version of Landmark Book ~ Boorstin}
Light Princess, The ~ MacDonald
Learning About God From A to Z - (Erickson)
Monitor and the Merrimac, The – Stein
Mr. Blue Jeans: The Story About Levi Strauss - Weidt
On the Banks of Plum Creek ~ Wilder
Prairie Boy's Winter ~ Kurelek
Simon Bolivar: The Liberator – de Varona
Shoes for Everyone – Mitchell
Story of the Golden Spike (SL pub) - Stein
Story of the USA Book 2 ~ Franklin Escher
Story of the USA Book 3 ~ Franklin Escher
Where the Red Fern Grows ~ Rawls
World War I - (Kent)
Zooful of Animals, An – Cole
2012 Switch:
Letter to Mrs. Roosevelt (Hist to Read-Aloud)
In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson (now a Read-Aloud)
The Great Turkey Walk (now a reader)
From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler (now a reader)

Core F-Eastern Hemisphere (Previously named Core 5):
101 Differences Between Cats and Dogs! ~ Sjogren
A Glorious Age in Africa – Chu & Skinner
Aladdin &  Other Favorite Arabian Nights Stories – Smith
Ancient China - Cotterell
Ashanti to Zulu: African Traditions ~ Musgrove, illust Leo & Diane Dillion
Beat the Story Drum, Pum-Pum – Bryan
Captain Cook ~ Humphris
China: History to 1949 ~ Mc Lenigham
Coral Reefs ~ Johnson
Disease Fighters, The: Nobel Prize for Medicine ~ Aaseng
East to the Shifting Sands ~ Poynor
Eastern Hemisphere Explorer – Densmer
Eric Liddell: Something Greater Than Gold – Benge
Eric Liddell: Men of Faith ~ Swift
Escape to the Jungle – (Sim International)
Exploring Planet Earth - Tiner
Faces: Australia Through Time – Faces Magazine Vol.III
Gandhi: Peaceful Warrior – Bains
Genghis Khan & The Mongol Horde – Lamb
Gengis Khan (World Leaders Past & Present) - Judy Humphrey
Incredible Journey, The - Burnford
India: The Culture - Kalman
India: The People – Kalman
Island of the Blue Dolphins, The – O’Dell
John Newton: Angry Sailor ~ Strom
Louise Braille - Davidson
Mongols, The – Nicholson
Rascal – North
Rat Catcher's Son, The - London
Remembering God's Awesome Acts - Mortimer
Seabird – Holling
Ships, Sailors and the Sea – Usborne
Slave Ship, The ~ Sterne
Stories from Arabian Nights ~ Lang
Story of Islam, The ~ Kanm
Story of Africa & Her Flags to Colour, The ~ Faul
Tales of a Korean Grandmother - Carpenter
Throwing Shadows ~ Konigsburg
Torches of Joy - Dekker
Traditional Africa ~ Addison
Unreached People Groups DVD
Walkabout ~ Marshall
What They Believe: Islam - Berry
White Queen: The Story of Mary Slessor - McFarlan
With Daring Faith: A Biography of Amy Carmichael ~ Davis
Wolves of Willoughby Chase, The – Aiken
Young Man in a Hurry ~ Clinton
Your Place in God's Plan ~ Holtzmann
2012 Switch:
Teresa of Calcutta (from Hist to Read-Aloud)
Mary Slessor by Benge (from Hist to Read-Aloud)
The House of Sixty Fathers (now a Reader)
The Hobbit (now a Reader)
Call It Courage (to Read-Aloud)
Mission to Cathay (to Read-Aloud)

Core G-World History: Part 1 (Previously named Core 6):
A Boy’s War - Michell
Adventures of The Greek Heroes – Mclean & Wiseman
Air Raid – Pearl Harbor! – Taylor
Ancient Egypt ~ Nickelson and Watts
Ancient Greece ~ Clare
Ancient Greeks in The Land of the Gods, The – Descamps-Lequime
Anne of Green Gables - Montgomery
Archeology: The Young Scientist - Usborne
Augustus Caesar's World - Foster
Between the Forest and The Hills – Lawrence
Big Red - Kjelgaard
Case of the Baker Street Irregulars ~ Newman (Listed as boys reader)
Children's Homer ~ Colum
Cleopatra - Stanley
Condor of the Andes, The ~ Wagner
Daddy Long Legs ~ Webster (Listed as girls reader)
David Livingstone: First to Cross Africa With the Gospel - Worcester
D'Aulaires' Book Book of Greek Myths ~ D"Aulaire
Eagle of the Ninth, The – Sutcliff
Everything You Need to Know About World History Homework – Zeman & Kelly
Fine Print: The Story of Johann Gutenberg – Burch
Freckles ~ Stratton-Porter
Girl of the Limberlost, A ~ Stratton-Porter
Hawk That Dare Not Hunt By Day, The – O’Dell
Hitler - Wepman
Ink on His Fingers – Vernon
Isobel Kuhn ~ Dick
Johannes Kepler: Giant of Faith & Science ~ Tiner
Marie Curie ~ Birch (different publication to book being used in Science C)
Martin Luther: Hero of the Faith ~ Nohl
Middle Ages, The - Caselli
Monk Who Shook the Word, The - Davey
Morning Star of the Reformation – Thomson
Napoleon - Carol
North To Freedom ~ Holm (this book is still included, now called "I am David")
Nothing Daunted ~ Repp
Otto of the Silver Hand – Pyle
Scarlet Pimpernell - Orczy
Science Discoveries: Isaac Newton & Gravity - Parker
Story of D-Day, The ~ Bliven
Story of Mankind ~ Van Loon
Story of Music, The – Usborne
Treasure of the Snow, The - St. John
* Twenty and Ten ~ Bishop (moved to core A)
Vasco de Gama: Adventures in Discovery ~ Knight
White Queen: The story of Mary Slessor ~ McFarlan
White Stag, The - Seredy
World of Columbus and Sons, The – Foster
2012 Switch:
The Great and Terrible Quest (to Read-Aloud)

Core H
- World History: Part 2 (Core 7 post 2005, which is different from Core 7 below)

Abraham Lincoln's World ~ Foster
A Jar of Dreams – Uchida
Catherine The Great (Landmark) - Scherman
Captain Cook Explores the South Seas (Landmark) - Sperry
Dark Frigate, The - (Hawes)
George Washington's World ~ Foster
Great Expectations ~ Dickens
Kidnapped Prince, The ~ Cameron
Napoleon and the Battle of Waterloo (Landmark) - Winwar
Painless Poetry - (Elizabeth)

Core W-World History
Augustus Caesar's World ~ Foster
Betty Greene: Wings to Serve ~ Benge
Eagle of the Ninth, The ~ Sutcliff
George Washington's World ~ Foster
Otto of the Silver Hand ~ Pyle
World of Columbus and Sons, The ~ Foster

Core 100 (American History in Depth, previously named Core 7, before 2005)
A Gathering of Days - (Blos)
A Jar of Dreams - Uchida
Adventures of the Greek Heroes ~ McLean and Wiseman
After the Dancing Days - (Rostkowski)
* Black Like Me ~ Griffin (Moved to Core 400)
Blue Willow - (Gates)
Called to Die: The Story of American Linguist Chet Bitterman - Estes
Christy - (Marshall)
Constance ~ Clapp
Custer and Crazy Horse ~ Razzi
Down Ryton Water - Gaggin
Dragonwings ~ Yep
Early Thunder – Fritz
Earthquake at Dawn - Gregory
Four Million and Other Stories ~ O'Henry
Frank Delano Roosevelt - Freedman
From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler - (Konigsburg) (switched to Core E Reader)
Gentle Ben ~ Morey
Gold Bug and Other Tales, The ~ Poe
Greeks, The ~ Usborne
Green Book, The - (Walsh)
Guns for General Washington – Reit
Henry Hudson: Master Explorer ~ Weiner
Home Ranch, The - Moody
Joni - Eareckson
Julius Caesar: Roman Dictator, illustrated ~ ?
Light in the Forest, The ~ Richter
Loner, The - Wier
Martin Luther King Jnr: A Man to Remember - Darby
Mrs Mike ~ Freedman
My Side of the Mountain - (George)
Nothing to Fear - (Koller)
On to Oregon – Morrow
Patty Reed’s Doll - Laurgaard
Core 100/7 continued….
Pony Express, Cobblestone (1981): - Nankin
Piercing the Darkness ~ Peretti
Red Badge of Courage, The - (Crane)
Rifles for Watie - Keith
Robert E. Lee ~ Roddy
Samuel F.B. Morse: Artist With A Message - Tiner
Smokey the Cowhorse ~ James
Sounder - (Armstrong)
Stout-Hearted Seven - Frazier
Streams to the River, River to the Sea - (O’Dell)
Time Enough for Drums ~ Rinaldi
Trails to Posey ~ Cook
Tut-ankh-amun and His Friends ~ Aldred
Two Tickets to Freedom ~ Freedman
Uncle Tom’s Cabin – Stowe
Up a Road Slowly ~ Hunt
Young Scientist Book of Archaeology ~ Usborne
Wait for Me, Watch for Me, Eula Bee - Peck
We’ll Race Your Henry Ford - Mitchell

Core 200-History of God’s Kingdom (Previously named Core 8):
A Taste of Chaucer (SL pub) – Malcolmson
Americas’ Favorite Poems – Pinsky
Bartholomew Fair ~ Stolz
Black Beauty – Sewell
Beauty – McKinley (listed as girls lit)
Bridge to Terabithia – Paterson
Canterbury Tale, The - Chaucer, retold by McCaughrean
Don't Check Your Brains at the Door ~ Mc Dowell
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde and Weir of Hermiston - Stevenson
Emperors Winding Sheet, The - Walsh
Fire Upon the Earth - Langford
Flames of Rome, The - (Maier)
Flying to the Moon – Collins
Good Wives – Alcott (listed as girls lit)
Hang Tough, Paul Mather – Slote (listed as boys lit)
Hatchet – Paulsen
Hawk and the Dove, The – Wilcock
In His Steps - Sheldon
Jackaroo ~ Voight
Little Men – Alcott (listed as boys lit)
Little Women – Alcott (listed as girls lit)
Pride and Prejudice - (replaced with annotated version)
Quo Vadis – Sienkiewicz
Separate Peace, A ~ Knowles
Summer of the Swan, The - Byars
Taste of Chaucer: Selections From the Canterbury Tales ~ Malcomson, editor
Trumpeter of Krakow, The - (Kelly)

Optional Titles for Research Paper for the Core 200 Year
Thirty Days to Understand Church History ~ Anders-Lundsford
This was John Calvin ~ Van Halsema
Who Moved the Stone? ~ Morrison
William Booth ~ Bennett
Optional Resources for Research Projects
Becoming Orthodox ~ Gillquist
Catholic and Christian ~ Schreck
Catholicism and Fundamentalism ~ Keating
Church of Rome at the Bar of History, The ~ Webster
Common Ground ~ Bajis
Evangelical is Not Enough ~ Howard
Faith Alone ~ Sproul
For the Life of the World ~ Schmemann
Gospel According to Rome, The ~ MeCarthy
Not By Faith Alone ~ Sungenis
Not By Scripture Alone ~ Sungenis
Roman Catholicism: Evangelical Protestants Analyze What Divides and Unites Us ~ Armstrong

Core 300-20th Century World History (Previously named Core 9):
Darkness at Noon - Koestler
DK 20th Century Day to Day – Schlesinger (CD-Rom)
DK Visual Timeline of the 20th Century, The ~ Adams
Exodus ~ Uris
For Whom the Bell Tolls - (Hemingway)
I Had Seen Castles ~ Rylant
Let One Hundred Flowers Bloom – Jicai
Life During the Russian Revolution ~ Sherrow
Mammoth Book of Eye-witness History ~ Lewis
More to be Desired than Gold ~ Wilson
Mother Jones: Fierce Fighter for Workers’ Rights ~ Pinkerton Josephson
My Life in Advertising & Scientific Advertising – Hopkins
Permanent Book of the 20th Century, The - Lewis
Robert Frost: Selected Poems
Run Baby Run - (Cruz)
Spy Who Came in From the Cold – Le Carre
War of the Worldviews – DeMar
What Everyone Should Know About the 20th Century ~ Axelrod and Philips
Youth Walk Vol.1 – Walk Thru the Bible Ministries

Core 400-Civics/American Government (Previously named Core 10) :

America's Caesar ~ Durand
Belle Prater's Boy ~ White
Crazy Lady ~ Conly
Crucible, The ~ Miller
Day They Came to Arrest the Book, The ~ Hentoff
Dry Divide, The ~ Ralph Moody
Giver, The ~ Lois Lowry
Godless Constitution: The Case Against Religious Correctness, The – Kramnick & Moore
Institutes of Biblical Law, The ~ Rushdoony
Julie of the Wolves ~ George
Jungle, The ~ Sinclair
Lies My Teacher Told Me ~ Lowen
Moby Dick ~ Melville
Never Before in History ~ Gary Amos and Richard Gardiner
Our Right to Drugs ~ Szasz [Optional Title]
Outsiders, The ~ Hinton
Shadow of the Almighty ~ Elliot
The Discovery of Freedom ~ Lane [Optional Title]
Tools of Dominion ~ Gary North
Tree Grows in Brooklyn, A ~ Betty Smith
Walden and Civil Disobedience--Thoreau
When in the Course of Human Events ~ Adams
Where the Broken Heart Still Beats ~ Meyer

 530-British Literature
No changes 
Sonlight ~ Discontinued Book List (Updated May 2013)

Here’s how we’ve gone about compiling this list:

Prior to 2012, if a book had been moved to another Core, in general, we've not included it in this

list, typing up only the titles that have remained dropped. Quite a few books were dropped out
and then added back into SL Cores, at regular intervals, over the years – we've only included the
titles that have remained dropped.

Electives, or Science titles have not been noted, unless they were a science biography. We have
not included a separate listing for Core 6A titles. {Updated in 2013 to show books dropped from Core W}

We have worked through the catalogues: 1994, 1995, 2000-2013--- and a jumble of personal notes to come up with this non-exhaustive list of discontinued Sonlight titles.
 (All those tiles with this little squiggle ~ between the title and the author are my hours of work).

Request for Use:
** Please be considerate and do not copy and redistribute the details off this list as your own work. If you decide to recreate this list, or use portions of it, to place in amongst a list of your own design; in your own document, on a post, in a tweet, on pinterest, or as a whatever ( ?) …… ☺

Please give credit to the SL moms/mums who contributed to, or worked on the original:
Jill (Kentucky – US),
Tara (SL Forums),
Chelle (NZ)

Thank you ☺

[This is a note from the New Zealand Mom, Chelle,  who compiled all this information] Thanks to  Tara, from SL forums, thanks for allowing us to incorporate a good portion of her work into this list. (All of the titles with the author’s name in brackets, have been her generous contribution.) Much  appreciated.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~ As a note, you may enjoy my Homeschool Resource Library which is full of great homeschool and parenting help and encouragement. 

~If you have any of the Sonlight® Catalogs from 1990-1993 or 1996-1999, I would love to either have you see what books have been dropped from those years, or to get [or purchase] those catalogs from you so I could do it. It would be great to have a more complete list. Email me, you can find my email on the side of my blog. ~

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Sonlight and the Common Core Standards

I thought this blog post by Luke was fantastic and just what Sonlighter's want to hear. 

from the Sonlight blog...First, Sonlighters already succeed. The Common Core is the latest attempt by policy makers to encourage schools to help students achieve. Sonlight students already do amazingly well academically. Sonlighers aren't failing. Many schools are. If politicians can find a way to help more students, that's great. But with of 20 years of success inspiring students--and parents--to love to learn, it would be foolish for Sonlight to change. To see more:

This is my favorite part:  But rather than follow the latest fads and hype about educational theory, we tend to stick to what we know works: Great books, lots of tools in your Instructor's Guide, and a focus on developing a life-long love of learning. Sonlight pioneered the literature-rich approach to homeschooling over twenty years ago. And we're not changing that.

Thanks Sonlight. That's is just what we wanted to hear. 


Friday, March 15, 2013

I am a Homeschool Carny...

Did you ever go to fair or a carnival when you were a kid? Do you remember the guys who would holler out to you as you went by, “Three shots for a dollar!” “Try your luck!” “See the bearded lady”…Carnies.

And I am one.

Back, and back again I remember when the carnival came to town.  Mud encrusted vans and trucks pulled up into a deserted farm field that the day before had been home to bunny and bird. There was slamming and banging, men and woman jumping out of the vehicles and scurrying to replicate some grand theme park.

Catalogs ready to go.
With pneumatic tools and lots of muscle, Ferris Wheels, Tilt-A-Whirls and my personal favorite-- The Scrambler-- would rise from the trucks and dust, like a Phoenix rising from the ashes. The bright plumage of the rides made the brown field look old and tired.

My Carnival, ready and waiting.
 Then, when the last rivet was in place, families and young lovers would stream into the area with bright happy faces and change in their pockets. The Carnies would beckon from their booths to come spend your money with them.

They always seemed a bit over-anxious and scary to me. I kept to the middle of the aisle, lest one should force me to spend my quarter trying to shoot too-big balls into small hoops. The glitter from the outside seemed a bit scary when I was on the inside.

Books and Banners--kind of like a ring toss!
When the lights went out on that final night, and all that could be found were the cast off cheap stuffed toys and the sticky cotton candy cones, and when all good children were home in their beds—then the Carnies began the rather depressing job of taking down the magic. And, before dawn, the carnival was gone and all that remained was a dust-bowl field with large gaping cracks in the earth, devoid of grass, fun or anything shiny.
In our sparkly convention clothes-notice no sequins!
Several years ago a circus came to a field about a mile from here. It was much the same, but less glitzy. An actual elephant helped to raise the “Big Top” and it was glorious to see. It was during the week, on a school day, so the only people out watching were the myriad of homeschoolers in our area. Even as an adult, the glory and wonder of it are etched in my memory.

Tigers and lions lounged in giant, open sided semis that were fitted with strong iron bars as one triumphant elephant used her enormous gray head to straighten a tent pole. The men, sweaty and strong, pounded in huge tent stakes. It was the stuff of story books and Disney movies, and we were there. I didn’t see the circus that year because I gave my ticket to one of my older sons, but the memory of that old field becoming a circus lingered in my thoughts long after the elephant was lead to her semi and traveled to the next town, and the one after that.

Ready to go to the next town.

I sell homeschool curriculum at state conventions; this is my 15thseason. Last year while I was packing up to go home after The Midwest Convention in Cincinnati, which hosted  5000 families, something occurred to me that I had never thought of before,

"I am a Carny.” 
Our Circus Wagon.

I roll into town in my large pick-up truck and we back into the loading dock of the convention hall. We haul hundreds of pounds of catalogs, books, racks, flooring and more to a forlorn looking 20x20 foot space and begin the hard, sweaty work of making it into a curriculum showcase.

The Big Top after the show is over.
Foam floors are fitted together, shiny tablecloths cover tired tables, book racks unfold and open their arms to hot-off-the-press books. We raise banners with nothing but our strength and crawl under tables to hook up the electricity so that the computer and DVD player will spring to life.

We put on our sparkly carnival clothes, comb our hair, pinch our cheeks so we look healthy, put on our smiles and wait for the doors of the convention hall to open. Our adrenalin is pumping as the doors open and we can’t wait to be an encouragement to homeschool parents.

 I think moms can understand best what it feels like when those convention doors open. It is a lot like labor--when the contractions come over you, and you can feel them coming, and all you can do is meet them head on, stay focused and wait for them to do their work.

Conventions are like that.

The doors open and the people rush in in waves, all wanting to see what we have in our booth—all wanting to talk to us. We meet them head on, stay focused and we go to work, helping them as well as we can. We stand at the front of the booth and beckon them to come in…”See our curriculum. It is the best. We can help you teach your children.  Throw a ball—make a basket—read our books!"

Yep, I am a Carny, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

When the lights go down, and the crowds go home, all the education and fun and glitz go back in the tubs. The shiny tablecloths go back in the box, the tables fold up, and we unplug our gadgets, put on our jeans and tee-shirts and are off.

It is kind of sad to look at the littered floors and ugly black extension cords lying around like orphaned puppies—but that is the life of a Carny. Move to the next town, jump out of the truck and do it all over again.

I am a Homeschool Carny—who would have thought?

Take care,