Thursday, December 23, 2010

What a Novel idea!

I went to a small private grade school on the water and was afforded a great education similar to that that a typical  homeschooler might receive. My 7th & 8th grade teacher was adamant about exposing us to things like public speaking and current events- we each had to do an oral report on any current even topic of our choice from a reputable magazine once a week and then discuss it as a class, and then we did an annual speech contest through which she introduced famous quotes to us.

One other thing she did, that was wonderful and has been my recent inspiration for novel-reading to my kids is to choose classics, books most people have heard of but probably never read, and read them with us, page by page, explaining the nuances and helping us analyze what was going on in the story. We'd take turns reading a few paragraphs each. We'd also take notes in the margins and highlight key phrases, paragraphs or quotes. I still have my copy of those books and they are like gold to me. I fully intend to do the same with my girls when they are old enough and mature enough to handle the subject matter in these books.

Here's my book list; some are also from high school:

The Pearl
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck
White Fang
Call of the Wild
Lord of the Flies
Catcher in the Rye
The Crucible
On The Beach by Neville Shute
1984 *I read this on my own as an adult*

I began with Charlotte's Web for my girls and plan to compile a book list for young pre-/readers as well. Be sure to check back for that!

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