I just finished listening to the speech given by Andrew Pudewa for Heart of the Matter's Online Conference. The conference was a few weeks ago, but the registration fee included MP3s of all the speakers. I am slowly but surely making my way through the speakers and feel that this one may just have revolutionized my homeschooling approach.
Mr. Pudewa is the director for the Institute for Excellence in Writing. I will be researching this program more fully, but there are a few points that his presentation brought up that feel like amazing "ah-ha" moments for me!! There have been a few moments (too few, probably) that I have felt God's immediate nudge, directing me in this homeschooling adventure. I am convinced that I need to slow down more and seek that direction more often. This is one of those nudges! To sum up Mr. Pudewa's points that I will be thinking about and probably posting about in more depth:
-Reading aloud to children in large quantities and increasingly complex quality is the best way to help them develop sophisticated language. When children hear good literature read to them their comprehension increases as well. They develop a resource from which to draw when they are communicating and writing. They will be able to use more sophisticated language when they have a better resource. (He pointed out that many children only have the language they hear in media as their primary resource for language used for communication and writing.) 2 hours a day of reading aloud would not be too much!
-The other way to build their resource is for them to memorize: poetry, scripture and speeches. He said that it is vital to memorize and to continue to review the memorized pieces.
This is a link to his article that contains most of the presentation that I listened to today.
I am left thinking that I have been drifting toward "busy work" and leaving off some essential things that are easier. i.e. "Do this worksheet," instead of really focusing on learning something. I am going to really examine our routine, our day, and see how we can fit in more reading aloud. I did not realize the importance of memorization. Now that I have heard why it is important I am asking myself if I can muster up the diligence to memorize and require my students to memorize! I will be seeking God's grace and strength for that one!
It seems I am constantly discovering ways in which I need more diligence!