04 August 2011
Bible Time & Hymns
We've used various things over the years in an on again/off again approach and so this year I decided I'd really like us to take a more disciplined approach to learning new hymns and revisiting our favourites. Adding a little extra side comment here before I go on; We're also enjoying listening to the hymns that relate to the portion of history we are study from Diana Waring's cd All Glory, Laud & Honor ~ Acapella Worship (I've notated those songs/lyricists into our history schedule).
The best way to make sure we keep incorporating something like this into our home educating day is to find a space where we can realistically fit it into the learning schedule. If it's on my schedule there is a better chance of us getting electives done.
I found the obvious space for us to slot our hymn studies was during our 45 minute bible lesson time slot which we enjoy first thing, before any of our other learning time starts, and the hymn gets played randomly at other times during the day (helps support the regular & repetitive approach that works so well for Bobs and Dasiy).
Taking a very Charlotte Mason styled approach to our studies was the obvious and very natural method for us and customised it looks like this:
1: Select a few hymns for our 6 week term and learn them, really learn them by regular and repetitive exposure.
2: Introduce other pieces by the same composer.
3: Reading some living literature about the composer.
4: Employ narration exercises from our read aloud time (orally, only for us here).
5: Add the composers timeline figure and/or details to our book of time (we do this during our 5th week of learning).
Another natural extension to the above, is for us to read through the bible passages that helped birth, or support, the theme of the hymn.
Since our learning terms are 6 weeks long selecting 1 or 2 hymns to learn by heart is very doable.
(Our 6 week learning cycle: 4 weeks of focused work then the 5th week is to tidy up projects, then 1 weeks break.)
Selecting our current hymn and it's lyricist, I'll detail a little of what a series of lessons around one hymn/composer can currently look like in our home.
If we are already familiar with the hymn and the lyricist, or musical composer, being detailed in the book we have chosen to learn from (think John Newton & Amazing Grace) we'll read the excerpt from that book of choice, listen to the hymn, either on c/d or via you-tube, and move along to another lyricist or hymn we are not so familiar with.
Sometimes the hymn/lyricist/composer we are wanting to study is often not found in the book we have been using this year: Stories of the Great Hymns, so we pick and chose from a few other books we have. Stories of the Great Hymns is informationally lite for Bobs so we've been reading other information about the lyricists on wikipedia and through various hymn websites (comparing what different sources/authors believe is fact about a person creates some interesting discussions) and if we can easily access them, for Bobs, we try to find including reading through a primary source.
This term we are learning Soldiers of the Cross Arise and introducing Jesus, Lover of My Soul or O for a Thousand Tongues. Those will then complete our study on lyricist Charles Wesley whom we started learning about the previous term. The excerpts we are reading to go with the above hymns come from this book: With Soldiers of the Cross the companion scripture reading is Ephesians 6:10-20 (putting on the full armor of God) and here's a good spot for me to share one of our family's personal preferences :) ......... We like to use The King James Version for bible study and devotion time. The children have been exposed to the beautiful language in The King James bible since they were very little so it's not 'difficult' language for them. And for those interested, one of the WTM moms shared a link to this interesting article which extolls some of the literary benefits of reading the KJV.
Right, back to the topic of Soldiers & Armour - there are a good number of copywork sheets available to use with Ephesians 6 dotted around the internet .... if you don't feel like creating your own.
Along with with copywork sheets there are also some rather nice colour in pages and sunday school crafts, like this one ,that one can find using g.oo.gle and if you're looking for a Full Armor of God page for a girl don't forget to visit Nadene of Practical Pages page here.