Sunday, April 3, 2011

Weekly Wrap-Up: When Quitting is Not Giving Up!

This past week went super fast.  We had a short school week due to the homeschool convention held Thursday through Saturday.  I went every day and had a great time.  In the past, I spent the majority of my convention time browsing the exhibit hall.  This year, I went to several workshops, a Tim Hawkins concert, and a two-hour finale with the Duggar family!

My family was with me during part of it and I have to say, I don't think I'll invite them to another homeschool convention!  At least not for a while.  The kids were tired after about an hour.  Hubs thoroughly enjoyed Tim Hawkins, and was fascinated with all the vendors and all the people, the THOUSANDS!!! of homeschoolers!  There were well over 10,000 in attendance!  Amazing!  But, just like the kids, he was done after about an hour or so.  He was thankful that a friend of mine was there and offered me a ride home so that he and the kids could go on home.  It worked out well.

Meeting some of the Duggar kids and listening to Jim Bob and Michelle speak was amazing!  They are a genuinely kind and humble family.  I was amazed with their graciousness.  Here is the one and only picture I took of one of the girls...

Yes, I could have asked someone to take my picture with her, or with any of the others.  But, I'm not one to impose and many others were asking for autographs and pictures.  I'm not an autograph collector at all.  I try not to place anyone on a pedestal and don't feel the need to have an autograph.  I wouldn't have minded a picture, but I'm ok without one too. :)  They distributed a family picture to everyone and I was satisfied with that.

I attended an IEW (Institute for Excellence in Writing) workshop and am impressed with the program.  I haven't purchased it... yet.  I'm considering it, but I want to read more about it and get reviews on it.  Some say it's time consuming and takes a lot of prep work on the teacher's part.  Something to consider.

Of course, there's always lots of curriculum to get a homeschooler's heart thumping!  But, I'm sticking with My Father's World because I love it!  I'm sticking with RightStart math because I love it, too!  I may change Katie's a bit, just because she's not as much as a manipulative girls as Emily.  She just wants to do it and get it done without fussing with manipulatives, most of the time.

View of some building in Cincinnati from inside the Convention Center.

As far as schooling this week, I've decided to quit!  The Children's Homer, that is.  We're done.  I can't take any more.  Emily can't take any more.  She told me that she's tired of all the killing.  After speaking to many who have done or are working through this curriculum, I discovered that none of them read the entire book!  I don't like leaving things unfinished, but in this case, it's a good thing.  We tried it.  We gave it more than a fair chance.  I had to make myself realize that quitting the book doesn't mean I'm giving up.  In fact, it's just the opposite.  I'm actually opening the door to read-alouds that fit our family better.  And I'm utilizing our time in more productive ways.  That is definitely not giving up!  One thing my friend told me today is that you should always give a book 30 pages before deciding to put it down.  If you're not interested in it after that 30 pages, then it's best to put it down.

Does anyone have any suggestions for reluctant/struggling readers?  Practice, practice, practice, right?  Katie stumbles through the easiest of readers.  It's frustrating for both of us.  Should I try more flash cards?  Maybe I could make a memory game with word cards.  She likes memory card games.  And she likes to write.  I just hate that reading is such a chore for both of my kids.

I want to give a shout out to Jen at Scrapingirl for being so helpful to us this past week!  And to Lisa at thearmychapswife, I regret that we didn't meet at the convention. 

Linked up with Weekly Wrap-Up and Homeschool Highlights


  1. I think you have the right idea about going back to the basics of reading. Sometimes more review is just what they need to gain confidence. I've always wondered about that home school convention. Thanks for the glimpse of it!

  2. WOW!! Look at all those vendors!!! And you're very welcome. I'm glad I could help.

  3. I'd LOVE to see Tim Hawkins! I've seen some of his YouTube videos and they're great! And hear the Duggar Family! Sounds like an awesome time!(I've only gone to 1 convention here and my family stayed home! LOL) Struggling reader? I found letting my kids have their own library card and picking their own books and being allowed to stay up 1 hour AFTER bedtime to READ ONLY really helped my daughter. And when she wanted to earn money I gave her $1 per challenging book to make her goal. I know some don't like paying for reading, but it was win-win for us - she earned the money and improved her reading.


  4. I'm so sad that we didn't get a chance to meet up too! It got crazy for us because we were here with 2 other families, so trying to coordinate where everyone was going to be and when got difficult. And, I left my phone in our hotel room on Saturday, so I couldn't even call you to try and find a time to meet up! I was not too happy with myself.

    Anyway, I am sorry it didn't work out. I guess we'll have to just keep getting to know each other on here until the next convention! : )

    Oh, and I decided to start MFW this year! First time we've ever done it so we are starting with Exploring Countries...

  5. It seemed like for a stage my daughter was a "struggling reader" too. But I wonder if it was the lack of good beginner books at her stage???

    Anyway, we turned to Cynthina Rylant... like Henry and Mudge, etc! Our librarian was also a big help in looking through books with us to figure out what books she could attempt to read. But I found that sitting with her during her "reading time" and helping her sound out words was the BEST thing... lots of practice, yes, even after a reading program that I considered to be VERY thorough!!

  6. I was at the convention too!!! My first one and it was so fun, but I left everyone at home and went with my sister!
    I am considering IEW as well. I have heard some good things about it.