Sunday, September 30, 2012
Easy Like Friday Morning
Lake Michigan Home Schooling Cooperative is a wonderful organization that my friend, Julie DeBlanc--that's her in the picture--introduced me to. At that time I was fiercely independent not wanting anyone's influence, but I like Julie and she came from a perspective that didn't encroach on mine at all. I visited one Friday and I was hooked. There were about 70 kids, all moving around in an orderly, purposeful manner. There was a wide variety of topics in the classes and there were offerings for every age group so that I could really participate and know my kids were all OK.
I remembered how much I like teaching and I taught everything from a preschool class on vowels, to Learn to Write the Novel Way, to Medieval Women.
This session I'm teaching Medieval Monasticism to third through sixth graders. My student are dream students, eager to learn and quick to remember. I combined the information (gleaned from The Age of the Cloister, The Rule of St. Benedict, The Habit, A Medieval Monk, Life in a Medieval Monastery, The Working Life--A Medieval Monk, among others.) about life as a monk or nun in the medieval period with the lives of famous monks and nuns and a personal call to a life of work and prayer. I lecture through the topic of the day--becoming a monk, the abbot, the Divine Hours, then we take a look at the saint of the day which I provide them with a short bio and a picture on a laminated card like sports cards. We take a break for a song or an activity--Calced vs. Discalced Foot Race, etc. Then we finish by taking on another level of responsibility on our work and prayer card. I set up a laminated kids chore card with prayer time and simple, basic chores that we are taking on one step at a time. This is my favorite class so far. The enthusiasm of medieval monks is inspiring and the variety of its expression is fascinating.