AO4 is the most deliciously rich year of delights for both mummy and daughter, and it was with a great deal of excited anticipation that we commenced our first day of the new school year this morning.
Oh my! There is such an awful lot of tradition surrounding our first day of school. There's the donuts we eat for breakfast; the first-day-of-school photographs; the intensive swimming program in the morning; the Vietnamese pork rolls for lunch, and the gift wrapped stationery to open. There's new coloured pencils, new paints and brushes, new exercise books and new folders to keep everything neat. Some things always stay the same.
And some things are different: new composer: Schumann; new artist: Caravaggio; new subjects: Latin; Plutarch; Grammar; Apologetics; Shakespeare. There's new Memory Verses, new folk songs (French and English) and new Psalms (French and English). We begin Bible notebooks for the first time and Jemimah starts to read some books herself.
And all those beautiful books are sitting there waiting for her.
It has taken a bit of time to get our Australian History together for the year, believe you me, and I'll tell you more about it shortly if you like, but in a nutshell we'll be reading Children of the Dark People; James Cook, Royal Navy; Bennelong; John of the Sirius; and Matthew Flinders by George Finkel. We'll learn about Aborigines and Discovery in Term 1; Captain Cook in Term 2 and The First Fleet and Matthew Flinders in Term 3. In the rest of the world we'll look at Prussia, the American Revolution and the one in France as well. I have no doubt that there is as much for me to learn here as there is for Jemimah, and personally I can't wait!!
For devotions we're reading Grandpa's Box: Retelling the Biblical Story of Redemption by Starr Meade, and Jemimah's reading her way through the Gospel of Luke. We'll be covering the Westminster Shorter Catechism questions on Obedience, Faith and Salvation. They Live in Australia by Eve Pownall is our geography book, and The Story of Australia for Boys and Girls by Joseph Bryant is our history spine. We've chosen Madam How and Lady Why for Natural History instead of Explore His Creation, but we'll make a final decision on this in a few weeks as recommended by Ellen, whose opinion I respect. I just can't get excited by Explore His Creation, somehow, although many homeschoolers rave about it.
Poplicola's our first Plutarch life. We had a superb discussion today about the first section of this, following Anne White's study guide very closely all the way. We each have a copy of the text to look at, and I have bound the discussion guide and text together in mine to make it easy to navigate. I don't think I could have attempted this difficult book without Anne's help. You're a wonder!! For what it's worth, Jemimah's narration was pretty impressive as well!!
Our first Shakespeare play is The Comedy of Errors. The Australian Shakespeare Company are presenting this play at the Royal Botanic Garden this summer, and we're just waiting for a fine night to get along to see it. I do hope it is not too absurd...
We're using MEP 4b for maths, Minimus for Latin and L'Art de Lire for French.
And now I'm going to stop. It is already 11.30 pm, and I need to go to bed. I'll try and link all the books tomorrow afternoon.
I go into this year with an incredible amount of optimism that this course is a good match for Jemimah - and for me as her teacher. All of our years of homeschooling so far have been terrific, but with the amazing lineup of books sitting on my desk, I have a feeling that AO4 might just be the best one yet!