K-12 Plan For A Christ Centered Education

Here at Schamelot we take a living books approach to education, allowing for lots of free time to explore, create, experiment, imagine, and cultivate the virtues, particularly piety, obedience and diligence. What is called "The Charlotte Mason Method" permeates our homeschool philosophy, and Kolbe Academy and Mother of Divine Grace are the spring boards for our curriculum, which I put together for each child each year. I hope you will find something I have shared helpful to your homeschooling adventure! (scroll down after clicking a link)

Catechism and Character Formation

Science and Natural History


Language Arts and Literature

History and Geography

Music and Art


Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Illustrated Read Your Way Through History in Picture Books List

Always Under Construction !

These are books our wonderful Central Rapahannock Regional Library has in circulation I do not presume to judge what other parents will find suitable for their children.  Please preview them yourself before reading them to your children if you have any doubts.  Maybe as I read through this list with my own children I will have time to add my own comments about each book.  For now I hope you will enjoy tracking these titles down at your library and sharing them with your children.  This list was inspired by the work of Cay Gibson, author of Picture Perfect Childhood, and Alicia van Hecke, author of Read Your Way Through History

The Creation c. 5000 B.C
It Couldn't Just Happen, Lawrence O. Richards
In The Beginning, Virginia Hamilton

The Dinosaurs 5th and 6th days of Creation

Adam and Eve c. 5000 B.C.
Daughters of Fire, Heroines of the Bible, Fran Manushkin
Adam and Eve and the Garden of Eden, Jane Ray
Cain and Abel c. 5000 B.C.
Cain and Abel, Finding the Fruits of Peace, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso

Noah and the Flood c. 3500 B.C.
Noah and the Great Flood, Mordicai Gerstein
Noah's Ark, Jerry Pinkney
Noah's Ark, Heinz Janisch 

The Ice Age c. 3500-2500 B.C.
You Wouldn't Want to Be a Mammoth Hunter!, John Malam

Stonehenge c. 3000 B.C.

The Epic of Gilgamesh c. 2750 B.C.
Gilgamesh the King, Ludmilla Zeman
The Revenge of Isthat, Ludmilla Zeman
The Last Quest of Gilgamesh, Ludmilla Zeman

Djoser's Step Pyramid c. 2630 B.C.

Cheops (Khufu) c. 2600 B.C.
The Pharaoh's Boat, David Weitzman


Khufu's Great Pyramid c. 2540 B.C.

Egyptian Civilization Begins c. 2575-2500 B.C.
I Am The Mummy Hebnefert, Eve Bunting
Temple Cat, Andrew Clements
The Egyptian Cinderella, Shirley Climo

Abraham and Sarah c. 2100 B.C.
Daughters of Fire, Heroines of the Bible, Fran Manushkin 

Isaac c. 2100-2000 B.C.
The Binding of Isaac, Barbara Cohen
Be Not Far From Me: The Oldest Love Story: Legends From The Bible, Eric Kimmel

Jacob and Esau c. 2005 B.C.
Jacob and Esau, Mary Auld

Job c. 2000s B.C.

Ancient Mayan Civilization c. 2000 B.C.
Gods and Goddesses of The Ancient Maya, Leonard Everett Fisher

Joseph c. 1914 B.C.
Joseph and his Magnificent Coat of Many Colors, Marcia Williams
Joseph and His Brothers, Mary Auld

Queen Hatshepsut c. 1503-1482 B.C.
His Majesty, Queen Hatshepsut, Dorothy Sharp Carter

Moses and the Exodus c. 1400s B.C.
Exodus from Egypt, Mary Auld
Moses in Egypt, Brad Kessler
Moses, Margaret Hodges
Moses, Leonard Everett Fisher
Moses in the Bulrushes, Warwick Hutton
Moses, The Long Road to Freedom, Ann Keay Beneduce
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Joshua c. 1400s B.C.
Be Not Far From Me: The Oldest Love Story: Legends From The Bible, Eric Kimmel

Tutankhamen c. 1333 B.C.
Tutankhamen's Gift, Robert Sabuda

Seti I c. 1300s B.C.
Pharaoh, Life and Afterlife of a God, David Kennett

King Minos c. 1300s B.C.
The Hero and the Minotaur, Robert Byrd
Theseus and the Minotaur, Warwick Hutton
Wings, Jane Yolen

Jason c. ?
Jason and the Golden Fleece, Leonard Everett Fisher

Legend of the Trojan Horse c. 1250 B.C.
Black Ships Before Troy, The Story of The Iliad, Rosemary Sutcliff
The Wanderings of Odysseus, The Story of the Odyssey, Rosemary Stucliff 
The Adventures of Odysseus, Hugh Lupton 
Cyclops, Leonard Everett Fisher
Odysseus and the Cyclops, Warwick Hutton
The Trojan Horse, Albert Lorenz (graphic book)
The Trojan Horse, Warwick Hutton

Ruth and Naomi c. 1200 B.C.
Daughters of Fire, Heroines of the Bible, Fran Manushkin

Gideon c. 1199 B.C.
Be Not Far From Me: The Oldest Love Story: Legends From The Bible, Eric Kimmel

Samson c. 1175 B.C
Be Not Far From Me: The Oldest Love Story: Legends From The Bible, Eric Kimmel

Samuel c. 1113 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Saul c. 1100 B.C.
The Story of King Saul and King David, Lore Segal

King David c. 1055 B.C.
David and Goliath, Beatrice Schenk de Regniers
David's Songs, Colin Eisler

King Solomon c. 1015 B.C.

Norse Civilization c. 900 B.C.
Iduna and the Magic Apples, Marianna Mayer

Elijah c. 859 B.C.
The Mysterious Visitor, Stories of the Prophet Elijah, Nina Jaffe
Elijah the Slave, Isaac Bashevis Singer
Journeys with Elijah, Barbara Diamond Goldin
Elisha c. 840 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Joel c. 835 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Obadiah c. 835 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer
Greek Civilization C. 800 B.C.
Persephone, Warwick Hutton

King Midas c. 700 B.C.
King Midas and the Golden Touch, Charlotte Craft
King Midas, Neil Philip
King Midan The Golden Touch, Demi
King Midas, John Warren Stewig

Homer c. 800 B.C.

The Olympic Games 776 B.C.

Jonah 760 B.C.
The Story of Jonah, Mary Auld
Jonah and the Two Great Fish, Mordicai Gerstein

Amos c. 760 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer
Romulus and Remus c. 771 B.C.
Romulus and Remus, Anne Rockwell
Famous Men of Rome, John Haaren

Isaiah 740 B.C
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Micah 735 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Sennacherib 704-681 B.C.

Hosea c. 701 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Hezekiah 701 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Nahum 660 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Daniel 635-536 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Zephaniah c. 630 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Jeremiah c. 627 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer 

Habakkuk c. 607 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Aesop's Fables 600 B.C.

Ezekiel 597-571 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer
Pythagoras 566 B.C.

Buddha 563-483 B.C.
Buddha, Susan L. Roth

Darius I 522-485 B.C.

Haggai c. 520 B.C. / Zechariah c. 520 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer

Roman Republic c. 509 B.C.

Legend of Hercules, c. 500 B.C.
The Twelve Labors of Hercules, James Riordan

Ancient China 500 B.C.-220 A.D.
The Fourth Question, Rosalind C. Wang
The Journey of Meng, Doreen Rappaport
The Emperor's Silent Army, Jane O'Connor
The Girl Who Drew a Phoenix, Demi
Happy New Year!, Kung-Hsi Fa-Ts'ai, Demi
Kites, Demi
The Gods and Goddesses of Ancient China, Leonard Everett Fisher

Lao Tzu c. 500 B.C.

The Silk Route c. 500 B.C.-1500 A.D.
The Silk and Spices Route, Paul Strathern
The Silk Route: 7000 Miles of History, John S. Major

Esther c. 480 B.C.
Queen Esther Sames Her People, retold by Rita Golden Gelman
Esther's Story, by Diane Wolkstein

Socrates c. 469-399 B.C.
Wise Guy, The Life and Philosophy of Socrates, M. D. Usher

Parthenon 447 B.C.
Parthenon, Lynn Curlee

Peloponnesian War 431-404 B.C.
Atalanta's Race, A Greek Myth, Shirley Climo
The Race of the Golden Apples, Claire Martin

Malachi c. 425 B.C.
Remembering the Prophets of Sacred Scripture, Marianna Mayer  

Alexander III 356-323 B.C.
You Wouldn't Want to Be in Alexander the Great's Army!, Jacqueline Morley

Eratosthenes c. 275-195 B.C. 
The Librarian Who Measured the Earth, Kathryn Lasky

Gaius Julius Caesar c. 100 B.C.
Julius Caesar, Great Dictator or Rome, Richard Platt

Cleopatra 69-30 B.C. 
Cleopatra, Diane Stanley

The Birth of Christ, c. 1 A.D.
The Glorious Impossible, Madeleine L'Engle
The Life of Jesus in Masterpieces of Art, Mary Pope Osbourne
Jesus, Demi

Muhammad, c. 571
Muhammad, Demi

Ancient India c. 1 A.D.-1279 A.D.
One Grain of Rice, Demi

Genghis Kahn, 1162-1227
Chengis Khan, Demi

Nasreddin, c. 1200
The Hungry Coat, Demi 

Scottland, Tamlin, 1549
Tamlin, Warwick Hutton

Dalai Lama, c. 1600
The Dalai Lama, Demi

Chinese Empire, c. 1775
You Wouldn't Want to be in the Forbidden City, Jacqueline Morley

Shaka Zulu, Africa, c. 1787
Shaka, King of the Zulus, Diane Stanley

Mark Twain 1835-1910
A Brillian Streak, The Making of Mark Twain, Kathryn Lasky

Gandhi, d. 1948
Gandhi, Demi

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Catechism Made Easy

I picked up this book from the book table at Mass, yesterday, and have been thoroughly enjoying it ever since! I've heard a little about the basic concept behind the method, before, but never had it all laid out for me. It shows you how to use a mnemonic, artificial memory system to remember just about anything, and it uses the material of the basic truths of our faith to teach it. We'll be using this for school starting Wednesday. You should really check it out--I think you'll like it as much as I do!
Happy Schooling!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Cool Math Project Idea!

This is from Human Life International. I've always loved statistics. I wish I could see the exact process by which they came up with all these numbers so that we could conduct similar computations. It's terrible, but what an impact this could have--like my new idea for a bumper sticker:

"The average Muslim woman has 8 children, the average Christian woman, 1.6. Think about it."

How Many Heisman Winners Has Abortion Killed?

The sports world recently greeted the news that this year's Heisman Trophy Winner, Tim Tebow from the University of Florida, was almost a casualty of abortion. Twenty-some years ago he was not the strapping 6'3", 235 lb. beloved sports hero that he is today. At that time he was a one-inch-long unborn child whose existence, because of an amoebic infection, was defined as threat to his mother's health. Pam Tebow, his mother, was told by a doctor that it would be in her best interests to abort this baby, and she refused. Her husband backed her up on that generous decision, and seven months later they gave birth to a perfectly healthy boy. Little did they know that twenty years later they would be standing on a national stage with a Heisman Trophy winner giving that magnificent witness to life. The world thanks you, Mr. and Mrs. Tebow! There cannot be a more touching Advent story than this.
I wonder if anyone has ever asked how many potential Heisman Trophy winners abortion has actually killed. The answer is, twelve. Reflect on that a bit as you read further because there is a larger lesson in the Tebows' witness.
Dr. Brian Clowes, HLI researcher, has examined the data from the 2007 Statistical Abstract of the United States (most recent census data) and extrapolated the numbers of the various professions and categories of Americans who have been eliminated in the wake of nearly 49 million legalized abortions, one third of all Americans conceived since 1973. The following numbers are based on the actual government estimates of the professions represented in America. So then, who have we lost to abortion?

2 US Presidents
7 Supreme Court Justices
102 US Senators and 589 Congressmen
8,123 Federal, district and local court judges
31 Nobel Prize laureates
328 Olympic medalists including 123 Gold medalists
6,092 professional athletes
134,841 physicians and surgeons
392,500 registered nurses
70,669 priests, ministers, rabbis and imams including
6,852 priests and 11,010 nuns (vocations "shortage"?)
1,102,443 teachers (K-12)
553,821 truck drivers
224,518 maids and housekeepers
336,939 janitors
134,028 farmers and ranchers
109,984 police officers and sheriff's deputies
39,477 firefighters
17,221 barbers, and
24,450,000... women (the gender of roughly half of all children aborted).

These numbers of course are only the tip of the iceberg. Keep in mind that we get our statistics about abortion from the abortion industry itself which has a vested interest in under-reporting the numbers. Likewise, these categories are only a few of the professions that Americans actually work in and are by no means a full portrayal of the total American workforce. What they represent, however, is the immense human toll that abortion takes on a society. Abortion-promoters present abortion as an exclusively private choice, but thirty-five years of abortion exposes the perniciousness of that lie. There is a social toll that comes from abortion which cannot easily be corrected.
For three and a half decades the feminists have reveled in a misleading "freedom to choose," and on the basis of that false "right" have eliminated their children and done immense damage to the family as the basic unit of society. Those who respect these sacred realities, on the other hand, have their wives and husbands to grow old with, their children to enjoy and their grandkids to play with and spoil. The love of life, marriage and family never leaves its adherents penniless, lonely or abandoned, and every now and then God throws in a Heisman Trophy just to show the rest of us that it's all worth it.

Sincerely Yours in Christ,

Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer,
President, Human Life International

Monday, November 19, 2007

The Marine Corps Museum

The new Marine Corps Museum in Quantico, Virginia, is absolutely awesome! I had the chance to go for the first time with my older three boys last weekend. I took lots of pictures! My oldest gets swept away in there every time he goes, reading every caption and studying every picture. I was just amazed at the life-size exibits of United States Marines in action. If you're ever in the area, make sure you go. It's free, and it's not something the kids (especially the boys) will forget anytime soon.
It was a wonderful history lesson!

Happy Schooling!

This is actually a life-size figure made of wax (I guess)! He looked so real I wanted to call out, "Oorah, Devil Dog!" He's holding a flag at the end of the pole (I can't remember if it was an American flag or a Marine Corps flag.)

This was in the desert room. The temperature in the room was actually very warm, to simulate the dessert. There was an audiocast of the Marines talking to eachother over the radio and calling in the helicopter for a med-evac.

This was in the snowy mountain room. This room was very chilly, with a bit of a wind rushing around. It, too, had an audiocast of Marines asking for reinforcements and supplied.

These are my boys, way overdue for haircuts!

This dog was so life-like kids were afraid to get near it. I don't think they actually stuffed a real German Shepherd, but it looked that real.

This is a depiction of the reef at the Battle of Tarawa. While we were standing there we saw a man, probably in his seventies or eighties, wearing a cap commemorating that battle. I guess he was actually there.

(The juxtaposition of my three happy boys next to this wounded Marine really cuts me up. To think of those countries in which children see the tragedy of war everyday, and then look at the joy on the faces of children who have the leisure of going to a multi-million dollar museum to look at pictures and exhibits of war really gives me pause. May we never take it for granted. And may our country cease to be the cause of those other children's suffering.)

This was the MOST real looking figure of them all, IMHO. You could even see the pores in his skin. I could have sworn he was alive.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Character Formation at Meal Times

Somewhere in his great treasury of wisdom, the Summa Theologica, St. Thomas draws a connection between man's appetite for food and his appetite for certain other pleasures which he will have to master later in life. For this reason as well as practical ones, my husband and I have always insisted that the children eat whatever is put before them, or eat nothing until the next meal. Before they can choose to skip a meal, however, they have to at least taste their food, one bite of each course.

When John Michael was a baby, no more than three years old, I made brussel sprouts (which I'd say is one of the most controversial foods on the planet--seems everyone either loves them or hates them!) and at first glance I think he was sure this meal wasn't going to go well at all. He has a funny gag reaction to certain textures, like raisins IN the oatmeal, for example (raisins or oatmeal alone were fine), but I was in no way prepared for what he would go through with brussel sprouts! The first bite had a serious problem with gravity, trying, despite his best efforts, to defy all the laws of physics. He reached for the milk, gulping the entire cup to wash down the offending orb. Mission accomplished!

The next time I made them (everyone else in the family loved them from the start), I could see the uncertainty in his expression. He saved them for last, refilling the milk glass after everything else on the plate was consumed, and braved the beligerent brussel sprouts once again. These brussel sprouts were a little heavier, I guess, requiring less effort to keep down, but the milk was once again employed as a safeguard. His confidence was growing.

The third time was a charm! He confidently speared one of the bite sized morsels and popped it into his mouth. With a smile he chewed and swallowed, master of his meal, captain of the cabbage, he had bested the bothersome brussel sprout and rather enjoyed it. After that there emerged a sort of competition out of who got to eat the last scoop of brussel sprouts.

All of our children are rather adventurous eaters, enjoying everything from Indian to Italian food, Thai to Texican fare, Japanese to Just Plain Made Up fodder.

I really think that when it comes time to master their other appetites, which it has for some of them, they'll have an easier go of it, having had years of practice, three times a day at the dinner table. The Battle of the Brussel Sprouts won, the preservation of their purity perhaps "un peu" more probable--the grace of God provided, of course!

Happy Parenting!

Altar Boy Training Video

Sancta Missa is an awesome new website that has videos and manuals for learning to serve and offer the Traditional Latin Mass. They've just recently uploaded the Altar Boy Training Video for low Mass and it's wonderful!

In Sanguine Christi,

Mapping the World One Ancient Civilization at a Time

Exlpore your world!
We incorporate geography into our history studies with lots of fun geography games (I'll post a list at a later date). But especially we enjoy doing outline maps which the kids trace and slowly fill in starting with one class of locations, like bodies of water, then moutain ranges, then cities, etc., until they have the whole map pretty much memorized. The maps at the Interactive Ancient Mediterranean Project are really nice for the study of the ancient world becaust their hi-res PDF's start with everything on the map, including terrain, then eliminate details little by little until you have just a blank map, which you can use for a "test." Even this wee ones enjoy this school assignment! They can pretend they're explorers discovering new places and mapping them for future generations.

Happy Mapping,