January Wrap-Up


January was the month in which all of my new schedule, reading, Bible study, and similar plans would come together, and new habits to enrich our lives and our homeschool would be firmly established.

I know, I know...but what with all my success in the dental hygiene arena (flossing every day without fail!), I thought maybe I'd get it ALL together.

Even if we don't have it all together, we did manage to cover a few things in Janurary:


Our character trait for January was contentment. No one needs more work on this than mommy. I have a flair for complaining and finding fault, which does not tend to enhance my contentment. Thankfully, this has been an area of growth in my life, and I would love for the boys to develop the habit of seeing God's grace wherever they are. Apparently, Bearclaw's teacher is also a fan of A Holy Experience, since this mini-journal for recording God's gifts came home with him.

The boys' memorized Philippians 4:11, Hebrews 13:5, and Psalm 103: 2 & 5 and we continued to use our devotional book, Long Story Short, in the evenings.

January saw us studying two very significant periods in both modern and ancients.

Bearclaw spent most of the month on World War I. He really enjoyed our discussion periods during these weeks, as did I, since he was able to teach me quite a bit. His thoughts are becoming more analytical regarding history - I suppose we're moving into the logic stage. So he discusses, and I sit in awe but a little sad. Those grammar years - where did they go?

We've also covered Russia extensively during January. It will be a big player in the rest of our modern studies, so the curriculum we're following, Biblioplan, wants the students to have a strong understanding of it's history. As we've progressed through our readings, I've become increasingly amazed at how popular history (and my personal history education) has covered the evil of Hitler extensively (as it should), while ignoring Stalin. His atrocities merit attention.

Shortbread spent January on ancient Greece, including the gods, goddesses and myths. These were not his favorite, just as they weren't well-loved by Bradley. He did get to make a paper Parthenon, though, so the study of ancient Greece was not a total loss for him.


Another novel with a girl in the lead made it on the docket in January. The Cabin Faced West by Jean Fritz did not appeal to Bearclaw, though we've enjoyed many of Fritz's other books. Perhaps the subject matter seemed too familiar; he's read several works that provide a young female's perspective on frontier life, and we're currently listening to all of the Laura Ingalls Wilder novels on audio. I suppose I'll forget about giving him The Courage of Sarah Noble for extension reading.

Part of his final project involved designing a "movie poster" for a film version of the book. Since Bearclaw does not particularly enjoy drawing or painting, we were very grateful for Google images and our printer.

Shortbread studied King Midas and the Golden Touch in January, which I just realized was deliberately chosen to complement the character trait for January, contentment. Wow. I wish I would have realized that last month. Still, we did enjoy Charlotte Craft's version of the story; the illustrations are rich (ha ha) and wonderful.


If there were a math celebration dance, I'd have done it in January when Bearclaw finished Primary Mathematics 3B from Singapore Math. Never have I been so happy to see a book finished. I'm hopeful 4A will sprial around and give Bearclaw a chance to practice some skills in which he already has confidence.

I actually think Shortbread is bored with math, but I'm letting it go, since I need the extra time to focus on Bearclaw's math right now. Perhaps I'll speed him up a bit.

With the cold (actually it's been pretty mild) weather upon us, we suspended our nature walks for a bit and are covering astronomy with Real Science 4 Kids over the next couple of months. Our nature walking buddies have joined us.

Because the boys are at two different comprehension and learning stages, I ordered both the Level 1 and the "pre"Level texts. Bearclaw reads the Level 1 lesson on his own, and then I read the pre-Level aloud to everyone. The next day, we do an activity based on the lesson. What I didn't count on was the fact that our first activity, to locate Ursa Major and Ursa Minor (the Big and Little Dippers to the non-astronomy types - like me), would not be possible in the evenings. Apparently, in winter, the hours before sunrise are when these are most visible here. I could have gotten the boys up at 5 AM to stargaze, but I didn't. They'll still be out there in the summer.

So that was January. I think it took longer to write about it than to do it.

Comment (1)

You're flossing? Every DAY?! I'm impressed! See, the boys will grow up and somehow get educated and you'll STILL have your real teeth. This is big news.

Loved reading your wrap-up! you write them well. You should write more. (Ahem.)