Monthly Archives: May 2008

Summer term curriculum

I am not doing a whole lot of curriculum planning this week. Frankly I needed a brain dead week-and I’m more or less having it. Purple 

But as a good homeschooling mum I do have SOME ideas for the Summer Term. My first idea is we wont be working formally for 7 weeks. I will probably finish a week early and have a cleaning up and sorting week. It will be the end of an academic year so we usually do a clear-out to get ready for the next year.

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Larry and Murry miss Josh

“We’ve been left here!”

Eaten bread is soon forgotten

On Sunday we celebrated Thursday’s feast of Corpus Christie. The readings reminded us not so much of the Presence of Christ in the Eucharist but in our responsibilities to that Presence. We need to REMEMBERthat God has saved us from slavery; taken us safely through the desert where we have had to deal with snakes and scorpions and brings us to Himself -to Jerusalem where we are one body, His Bride.

Father talked to us about the ingratitude of those who having been fed by the Lord walkaway and refuse to believe. He used an old saying “Eaten bread is soon forgotten”. Israel soon forgot about the manna and lost faith-even before they had entered the Promised Land. Then Jesus feeds the 5000 and the following day they are already asking for a sign!

Nothing much has changed.

I wonder how much lack of faith and ingratitude go together. But to be honest I think it goes deeper than that. Surely it is lack of love. If we really loved as God has commanded us to love then the Real Presence in the Eucharist would not be so hard a concept to grasp would it? After all, Christ giving Himself to His Bride-feeding Her, His body through an all consuming-passionate- act of sacrifice is Love in its fullness.

Satan’s view of things is diametrically opposed to the Eucharist. His words are “I will not serve” and “you will be as gods”. Following these ideas we get to make God in our own image and reject the radical call to Truth. We get to eat bread that is soon forgotten but we are starved of the Lamb.

I remember Ross Moss saying that one of the first things that pointed her towards the Catholic Church was her realisation that she needed to eat the ‘lamb’. As part of her Jewish heritage she saw the huge importance of the Passover meal in the way God prescribed it and when she first became a Christian she saw the lamb was no longer there.

Just as the lamb had to be eaten at Passover, so the Lamb has to be eaten now. We remember in a special way- the remembrance of the Hebrew word that is “to make present”. Christ the Lamb of God stands on the altar as though slain (as St John wrote in the Book of Revelation). We are called to partake in that heavenly banquet and eternal sacrifice.

Let’s not forget.

Josh and John’s Amazing American Adventure

This evening Josh and his friend John go down to London and from there they fly to America. They are going to spend 6 weeks around Ohio and thereabouts.

Josh worked hard and has saved up for this trip. He has been very determined to overcome the obstacles to doing this trip and finally it has all come together and he and John are on their way.

Friends have been very kind on both sides of the pond. On this side he has received a great deal of support from people like Sr Kath, and my friends Julie and Dot. Julie actually went and got him some dollars to take out with him.

Shana has been the amazing queen of organisation in the US side of things and has arranged for the boys to stay with families while they have their Great Adventure. I am very grateful to her.

Josh is going to visit FUS while they are out there and have a look round and meet the staff. He is hoping and praying that he can get a place there and we can somehow arrange the finances. Shana mentioned that a friend said the Psalms say God owns all the cows on the hillside-so he could sell a few! I am trusting that if Josh is meant to go there then the money will happen. God does that kind of thing a lot. He has done it for us before.

Josh will find something unexpected in his luggage later.

Whatever happens with the university it’s a trip the boys will remember. They are on the train and headed off for their Great American Adventure.

Homeschool week

Just come to the end of the week and half term is here.

I have been winding down this week but we’ve done a few things. Iona sat the second paper of her maths IGCSE on Tuesday and I gave her the rest of the week off. I’m nice like that :)

Ronan has been doing bits of science and Maths. I have made some photo flash cards for Latin.  We are using the Linney’s Latin which is a lovely easy and fun way to learn the language. I have used some family photos of Roni in a life jacket and visiting a farm and put the words ‘Sum nauta’ and ‘Sum agricola’ under them. Then I’ve printed up the other words for sentences and Roni has been playing with them to make various Latin sentences around being a sailor and farmer. I am going to make a card of him being a poet-but I think I’ll have to get him to pose for a photo for that.

It was challenge week on Wednesday at homeschool group so the children had lots of different activities to have a go at around the room. In Sign Language we got into a long and complicated version of The Fisherman and His Wife with lots of new signs for the children to practice. Far too many for them to properly remember I think!

Today Karen came over and the children did some final bits about the Iron Age and Celtic life. Karen showed them some excellent little animations on the BBC history website. Last time we made a little iron age village out of card. This time the children could see and animation on how such houses were built.  

After lunch they played with lego.

In praise of Lego.

I love Lego. Children can design and build all sorts of things. There are gears and pulley’s and battery packs to make vehicles and robots that will actually work. It’s great for ideas and helping children learn cooperation and planning skills.

We’ve built up quite a collection over the years and Alex still uses it to design models he wants to make on his 3D art and animation programme he uses on the computer.

Avila, the NHS and me.

I have a friend who has breast cancer. She has been-and continues to be put through-what we are jokingly called the Economy Package. Considering how serious her cancer is she’s had shoddy treatment. Well, I have had a similar experience with my own care and we decided we were too positive in our approach and too passive in the face of the system.

SO. We both decided we would fight back.

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Some Links of interest

I have just discovered SPARKLEBOX a website with loads of good worksheets, downloads and other stuff for KS1 and they have another site for KS2. A lot of the stuff is free and the the stuff you pay for is reasonably priced. I’ll stick in the sidebar in the WORKSHEET area.

I particularly liked the handwriting practice sheets with a grass, sky, ground motif to help children remember how letter shapes work. There’s some good Bible story sheets to print off so children can learn sequencing and tell the stories.

I have also added a link for Robert Louis Stevensons’s A Child’s Garden of Verses. I am going to work on a couple of them with Ronan so he can aim for the target on the CM achievement scale for a six year old.

You might also be interested in Donna Young’s pages for cursive handwriting and other stuff.

Then for Catholic stuff you might like CATHOLIC KIDS.

Finally; I promised to but up the links for the Eucharist MP3s I’ve been listening to. Take a good look at ST. MICHAEL’S MEDIA. The programmes are by Michael Voris-a straight talker who is very clear and doesn’t sugar coat anything. If you don’t want to hear some very difficult stuff don’t go there-but if you really want the unvarnished Truth; he’s the man.

Okay…more later.