02 May 2017

Our Month Ahead ~ Books to Read in May 2017

Thinking of the all the Southern hemisphere families we know as we all endeavour to settle into home educating during the winter months; and of the Northern hemisphere home educators as they wind down their learning year and prepare for summer time break.

We've just had 2 weeks of term break and are now back to scheduled learning.  Ho-hum ;)
It feels like we've been going full pace during term break attending to around -the-home projects and tasks, which is so good as it's nice to start a new term with a sense of achievement during the weeks away from scheduled learning.

I think I'll skip creating weekly updates from now on and just go for Our Month Ahead posts as this years reading assignments, and book lineups, are intentionally pretty spread out to allow time for all the other subject areas we are working in; and, not sure about other highschooling years, educating at home, families but our reading time has definitely morphed into a vastly different look this year:  the sheer number of books we read has become less and yet we discuss so much more (age and maturity stage of teens) - and the literary goals do not seem to be, so much, about completing the books but about immersing ourselves in the thoughts and discussions surrounding the themes in the books..... along with rabbit trails, which happen constantly and are creating some delight filled distraction.

Beneath are the titles we completed during the end of April , and the books to be read during May.  (I'll update with any extras as we go along. The C beside each item means completed.)
Our literary/book basket selections for this Month:

Family Book Basket:
KJV Life Application Bible.  Excellent Bible.

19 April 2017

Audiobooks ~ Audible's 50% off Sale

Audible has their 50% off sale running again, and this is where I try to do some listening time stocking up.

I thought I'd share some of the items on our current wishlist that we may purchase, or already have.  (I don't use affiliate links; so this is not a promotion for payment post :) )

For those that may want to read our reviews of a few audible purchases you can find those here.
Different ~ Nathan , and, Sally Clarkson  autobiographical/ parenting/ inspirational  
it's more economical to purchase the whispersync kindle off amazon first, then purchase the audio

I keep encountering this on other readers lists.  One mom said I'd either really enjoy it; or really not ;-) 

At Bertram's Hotel ~ Agatha Christie   golden era/cosy mystery 
Preview Christie titles for Daisy?  She's keen to go through the unabridged editions.
(Returned. Content too mature for Daisy (15).  Mother abandons child for hedonistic life style, bigamous adultery, and patricide.  The dramatised version didn't seem to highlight those things as much.) 

4:50 From Paddington ~ Agatha Christie  golden era/cosy mystery
(Returned.  The graphic detailing of the murder put me right off - didn't help that I was listening to it late at night :-P )

The Riddle of the Sands ~ Erskine Childers mystery (pub 1903)
purchased $0.98 whispersync kindle first, meant the audiobook was $4.49

The Courts of the Morning (A Richard Hannay Mystery) ~ John Buchan
purchase $1.14 whispersync kindle first, then audiobook is $2.99)

Enemy Brothers ~ Constance Savery   children/historical fiction 
 Daisy and I decided we really do want to go thru this book - the audio on sale is cheaper for NZ-ers to purchase than a new printed book.

When My Name Was Keoko ~ Linda Sue Park   children/historical fiction 
the printed books are all - currently - American spelling. Go for audio option

kindle version currently not available... cheapest option this week is audible.  Be a good tie-in, belatedly, for us having read The Modest Proposal ~ Swift last year.

Just as I Am ~ Billy Graham  Autobiography

A Seaside Practice ~ Tom Smith    autobiographical

(purchase whispersync kindle first)

 I could only find printed books with American spelling, so we keep umm-ing and ahh-ing over using a credit for this.  The 'sale price' is not very attractive.  (Sat 22/04 update:  Found a 2nd hand printed, unabridged copy during a op shop book browse, English spelling :D)

(found on SarahElisabeth's blog)  Due to the narrator, I think I'll read the printed format with this one.

Death Around the Bend ~ T.E. Kinsey (pre-ordered at the sale price)

The titles beneath have been recommended on reading associates lists .... wondering if any of you have read these titles?  I always wonder if cosy reads, written by modern authors, for adults,  have "clean "  - not detailing gratuitous sensuality - adultery free, respect based straight romance:  many modern cosy mysteries we've encountered definitely do not.  (Comments welcomed)

Strangeways to Oldham ~  Andrea Frazer   cosy mystery

News of the World ~ Paulette Jiles American Historical Fict
Such a good book!!  The WTM moms recommended it.  Has 2 small cursing excerpts.  Child prostitution is one of the topics (not graphic or detailed).

10 April 2017

Book List: 70 + Books for Teen Girls ~ Read by Daisy at age 14

Posting this separately, to save anyone interested from having to sort through the paraphernalia in the original post that housed this list.
Here are some of the books that Daisy read through during 2016, aged 14, and enjoyed.
(scheduled reading)
Runaway Settlers ~ Elsie Locke      (younger,  but still a good read for Daisy)  (NZ Hist)
Boys Without Names ~ Sheth   (not for sensitive readers.  Story ends well)
The Screwtape Letters ~ Lewis     (audio)
Nothing Else Matters ~ St. John   (has romantic interest as an underlying theme)  

Free Reading (includes audiobooks):
Stepping Heavenward ~ Prentiss  (we had some great mum & daughter discussions while reading this book)
Northanger Abbey ~ Austen   (audio option)
Mansfield Park ~ Austen  (audio option)
Hope Glynne’s Awakening ~ Goldsmith Cooper
The Black Star of Kingston ~ S.D. Smith   (Daisy didn't enjoy this as much as The Green Ember)
The Secret School ~ Avi  (audio)
Curtain: Periot’s Final Case ~ Christie (audio   needed discussion. Content issues, unexpected twist at the end)
The Young Carthaginian   ~  Henty   (audio read by Jim Weiss)
Christy ~ Catherine Marshall   (mature themes, needed discussion)
The Keeper of the Bees ~ Stratton-Porter  (mature themes, needed discussion)
The Harvester ~ Stratton-Porter   (mature themes, needed discussion)
Duplicate Death:  Inspector Hemingway Series, Book 3 ~ Heyer  (audio) (some content issues)   
Mother ~ Norris  (she said it ends a bit quickly)
The Chestry Oak ~ Seredy   (wonderful story)
Betty Green ~ Benge    (& Other Benge titles not already read)
A Little Bush Maid ~ Mary Grant Bruce  
Mates At Billabong ~ Mary Grant Bruce  
Norah of Billabong ~ Mary Grant Bruce  
From Billabong to London ~  Mary Grant Bruce  
Betsy-Tacy ~ Lovelace   (read a few in the series.  easier reading. We found that some of the content in the later books is very boyfriend/girlfriend focused, casual dating etc...  :-/ )
The Dragonfly Pool ~ Ibbotson  (no magic in these books. Wonderful story)
Agatha Christie (select titles only.  audios)
Mrs. Pollifax  (series)~ Dorothy Gilman  various titles. Unitarian beliefs in every book. Review here.)
The Gammage Cup ~ Kendall    (does have romance, but is clean)
The Boy in Striped Pajamas ~ Boyne  (sober, emotive. discussion generator!)
Alas, Babylon ~ Frank (sensuality! edited out)
The Cottage Tales (audio series, beneath, about Beatrix Potter) ~ S.A Wittig  (see my review here)
1.Tale of Hill Top Farm ~ Wittig Albert
2.Tale of Holly How ~ Albert
3.Tale of Cuckoo Brow Wood ~ Albert    bks 2 & 3 focus on Potter, purportedly, believing in fairies - the Holly How book is over focused on that theme - and neither Daisy or myself enjoyed those titles as much as the others
4.Tale of Hawthorn House ~ Albert
5.Tale of Briar Bank ~ Albert
6.Tale of Applebeck Orchard ~ Albert
7.Tale of Oat Cake Crag ~ Albert
8.Tale of Castle Cottage ~ Albert

Dick Barton and the Firefly Adventure ~ Edward J. Mason , Morris West (audio)   very corny! old time radio.  We enjoyed it :-D

27 March 2017

Our Week Ahead becomes ...Books Being Read ~ March 2017

Trying to find time to get regular 'our week ahead' posts up is just not happening... so I thought I'd share what we've been reading this month, along with a quick comment about the rest of our educating at home topics. 

Jay and Daisy are plugging away at their academic subjects though we've needed to make changes to Jay's academic workload as he spends more and more time away from home with part time work.  Since Jay now has less time to sit and read, we've switched some of his titles over to audio book - works perfectly; and, amazingly he's electing to go through the fiction titles that have been sitting there waiting to be read.  The Surfeit of Lamprey's had been dust collecting on his book basket list since last year; it now been listened to and enjoyed.

Daisy is rather enjoying using Greenleaf's Guide alongside her reading of Bede's Ecclesiastical History of the English People.   Greenleaf doesn't go through the entire book, so Daisy is electing to read through the rest of it anyway 

** For NZ-ers:  Whitcoulls stock and sell The Greenleaf Guide to Medieval Literature.
Reading for Daisy is never an issue, she'll happily do that anytime, any day, anywhere - so she tries to focus on getting academic subjects out the way first.

Both children are at the age where indepth discussions are a natural follow on with the books they are reading - this is something I've intentionally cultivated; generating open dialogue over issues/character, or lack there of,  etc... in books being read.  This  has been our life with a literature based approach to education right from the young years.

Book Baskets:
Book Sale Find:  Just Binne
Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps & Timelines  (Church History)
Bede's Ecclesiastical Hist of the English Speaking Church
How to Write Clearly ~ Beechick  
The Prince of the House of David ~ Ingraham
The Faerie Queen ~ Edmund Spenser (1590's epic poem)   (unabridged audio)
Horrible Histories: Vile Victorians ~ Deary  :-P   (library sale find)
What She Could;  & Opportunities ( A sequel) ~ Susan Warner
Just Binnie ~ Dick King-Smith  (so nice to find a positive presentation of belief in God, and the power of prayer, in a Modern Times chapter book .  I found this easier chapter book book in a library sale; and, since I enjoyed Daisy decided to read it too.)
The Secret of Walter Mitty ~ Thurber  (Short story)
The Most Dangerous Game ~ Connell  (Short story)
A White Heron ~ Jewett  (Short story)
How to Read Slowly ~ James Shire
The Student Leadership Challenge ~ Kouzes & Posner  (Leadership Course. Spine)
Leaders Who Last ~ Dave Kraft   (audio)
Rose Book of Bible Charts, Maps & Timelines  (Church History)
Surfeit of Lampreys ~ Ngaio Marsh ( Mystery)
Died in the Wool ~ Marsh   (Mystery)     (audio  the one thing I don't like about James Saxon narration is the heavy! affectation he injects into the reading.)
Christian History Made Easy ~ Timothy Paul Jones   (Church History)
The Most Dangerous Game ~ Connell (short Story)
Arsenic and Lace ~ Joseph Kesselring (play.  indepth discussion about mental health scenarios evolved from this.)
Book Sale Find: .... then there were nine
.... then there were nine ~ Phyllis Johnston  (NZ Hist)

21 February 2017

Our Week Ahead ~ Mon 20 Feb 2017

Summer has certainly arrived late in our region - the hot balmy weather most hoped for over the Christmas break didn't happen - we are having days with significant heat in them now.
(Perfect weather to be at the beach, the lake, lounging in the pool ....... We, however, are doing scheduled learning, painting the house, stacking away firewood for winter and reorganising our very scruffy shrub gardens; and, enjoying visiting family!)

Our learning for the week ahead contains the following:

History & Geography    
Rose Book of Charts      p.34  AD1, AD100

History, Literature, & Book Basket: 
1: Book Basket:
The Prince of the House of David ~ Ingraham 

2:  Audio’s in Feb:
The Faerie Queen ~ Edmund Spenser (1590's epic poem)   (unabridged audio)
1:  Essentials in Writing 10 
2:  Essentials in Literature
o   The Secret Life of Walter Mitty 
3: Greenleaf Guide to Medieval Lit
o   Bede   (AD 731)  wk 1 of 3   (Lesson 1)

Church History, & Geography
Rose Book of Charts      p.34  AD1, AD100

Literature, & Book Basket:
1: Book Basket:  
1:  The Whisper of Glocken ~ Carol Kendall
o   2: Lite Coin ~ Branson
o   3: How to Read Slowly ~ Shire p.1-21  
2:  Audio’s in Feb:
Surfeit of Lampreys ~ Ngaio Marsh (1941)  NZ/Britain

Business Studies 
o   The Leadership Challenge ~ Kouzes/Posner p.3-21

All:   St. John Ch:7+

Book Basket
Christian History Made Easy ~ Jones   Ch:1

1:  Read Alouds:  
o   Short Stories  by Saki

2:  Other: 
C.A. book ~  Dn to read and discuss

My Book Basket:
1 Samuel (KJV Bible)
Surprised By Joy ~ C.S. Lewis (audio)

(Previewing the following titles for Daisy)
The Girl Who Drank the Moon ~ Kelly Barnhill (Modern fairy tale.  Check out authors worldview)
The Clocks ~ Agatha Christie
Juno ~ Fleur Beale (appears to justify adultery, details 'mystic' powers)