Tag: free

Untriumphantly: Love Is a Person

Merry Christmas!

Beloved friends, let us love one another; because love is from God; and everyone who loves has God as his Father and knows God. Those who do not love, do not know God; because God is love. Here is how God showed his love among us: God sent his only Son into the world, so that through him we might have life. Here is what love is: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the kapparah for our sins.

Beloved friends, if this is how God loved us, we likewise ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God remains united with us, and our love for him has been brought to its goal in us. Here is how we know that we remain united with him and he with us: he has given to us from his own Spirit. Moreover, we have seen and we testify that the Father has sent his Son as Deliverer of the world. If someone acknowledges that Yeshua is the Son of God, God remains united with him, and he with God. Also we have come to know and trust the love that God has for us. God is love; and those who remain in this love remain united with God, and God remains united with them.

Here is how love has been brought to maturity with us: as the Messiah is, so are we in the world. This gives us confidence for the Day of Judgment. There is no fear in love. On the contrary, love that has achieved its goal gets rid of fear, because fear has to do with punishment; the person who keeps fearing has not been brought to maturity in regard to love.

We ourselves love now because he loved us first. If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar. For if a person does not love his brother, whom he has seen, then he cannot love God, whom he has not seen. Yes, this is the command we have from him: whoever loves God must love his brother too.

1 John 4:7-21 (CJB)

            Merry Christmas! The waiting of Advent is over. Christmas is here! Emmanuel has come! Praise His Name! 

            I saw a t-shirt design that I thought was clever a few weeks ago. It said, “Love is a verb.” I’ve heard that love is a choice. And grammatically speaking, love can be a noun in that it is an idea. But I liked the idea that love is action—it is a “doing” word. But the more I thought about it, the more I realized all of these things were both right and wrong. Love is a choice. Love is an idea. And love is a verb. But more importantly, love is a person. 

            Christmas is the celebration of Love coming down. How do we know love? Because we have seen it in Jesus? How can we experience and share love? Only in God. All the love in this world is borrowed from God. Only in God do we know love. God became flesh and He dwelt among His people. He became one of us. He walked with us. And then He died for us. Only by having God with Us, only in seeing the Divine in a manger did we find love—or more correctly, did Love find us

            As you celebrate His coming, know it was for Love. “He died not for men, but for each man. If each man had been the only man made, He would have done no less” (C.S. Lewis). We love one another today because He loved us. Love is a person. And He made Himself lowly to rescue you. Because He loves you. 

Today’s Song: A King Like This by Chris Tomlin

Untriumphantly: All Things New

This first week of Advent is the week of Hope!

Adonai, you are my God.

I exalt you, I praise your name.
For you have accomplished marvels,
[fulfilled] ancient plans faithfully and truly.

For you have made a city a heap of stones,
turned a fortified city into rubble,
made the foreigners’ fortress
a city that will never be rebuilt.
Therefore mighty peoples glorify you,
the city of ruthless nations fears you.
For you have been a refuge for the poor,
a refuge for the needy in distress,
shelter from the storm,
shade from the heat —
for the blast from the ruthless
was like a storm that could destroy a wall.
Like desert heat, you subdue
the foreigners’ uproar;
like heat subdued by a cloud’s shadow,
the song of the ruthless dies away.

On this mountain Adonai-Tzva’ot
will make for all peoples
a feast of rich food and superb wines,
delicious, rich food and superb, elegant wines.
On this mountain he will destroy
the veil which covers the face of all peoples,
the veil enshrouding all the nations.
He will swallow up death forever.
Adonai Elohim will wipe away
the tears from every face,
and he will remove from all the earth
the disgrace his people suffer.
For Adonai has spoken.

On that day they will say,
“See! This is our God!
We waited for him to save us.
This is Adonai ; we put our hope in him.
We are full of joy, so glad he saved us!”
For on this mountain
the hand of Adonai will rest.

But Mo’av will be trampled down where they are,
like straw trampled into a pile of manure.
They will spread out their hands in Mo’av,
like a swimmer using his hands to tread water;
but their pride will be humbled and sunk,
no matter how clever the strokes of their hands.
Your high, fortified walls he will level,
strike to the ground, lay in the dust.

Isaiah 25:1-12 (CJB)

Let me say this, brothers: flesh and blood cannot share in the Kingdom of God, nor can something that decays share in what does not decay. Look, I will tell you a secret — not all of us will die! But we will all be changed! It will take but a moment, the blink of an eye, at the final shofar. For the shofar will sound, and the dead will be raised to live forever, and we too will be changed. For this material which can decay must be clothed with imperishability, this which is mortal must be clothed with immortality. When what decays puts on imperishability and what is mortal puts on immortality, then this passage in the Tanakh will be fulfilled:

“Death is swallowed up in victory.

“Death, where is your victory?
Death, where is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin; and sin draws its power from the Torah; but thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah!

So, my dear brothers, stand firm and immovable, always doing the Lord’s work as vigorously as you can, knowing that united with the Lord your efforts are not in vain.

1 Corinthians 15:50-58 (CJB)

            There is a difference in what is eternal and what is temporal. We all know this deep down, yet we all spend our lives toiling for the temporal. We all hang our hats on pegs that will not last. We know this, deep down. In the musical Hamilton, King George famously sings, “Oceans rise, empires fall!” We know this to be true from history class. Yet, none of us really thinks about these things as they pertain to us. Yes, we think, America won the Revolutionary War! We don’t think about the fact that England lost. We don’t think about the fall of Rome—not in a way that pertains to us, anyway. 

            Isaiah says, “Look, we’ve been hoping in this God, and He’s now saved us!” And we think, “Yes, yes! He did come and save us. We know about that Holy Baby in the manger. We know about that King who died for His people. We know how He rose again!” We rejoice in a day that was saved. But the saving isn’t over; it’s still underway. All things are being made new as we speak! Because of the lowly, lovely king (mewithoutYou), I’m being made new, even now. The Day-with-a-capital-D is still coming. And we’re still waiting. While oceans rise and empires fall (Hamilton), we’re waiting. Because on that day, we’ll all be changed! The temporal things—they’ll do what temporal things do: they’ll disappear from sight and, eventually, memory. What will remain? The eternal. Those things that are really important. Those people made in His image who He came to save and change into something new. There will be victory in Jesus for the slaves who have remained captives all these years. We’ll be changed. We’ll still be

            This Advent, as we prepare for that coming Day when we’ll be changed, let us remember to spend our time on the eternal things.  What are the eternal things? Not the presents, not the tree, not the tinsel—but the people you’re sharing the season with. The people you worship alongside. The neighbors you pass on your drive home. The family you sit and enjoy the season with. The beggar on the street. The foster child whose gifts you buy. People. That is what is eternal. Pointing those people to the God we have waited for and still wait for, Who will save us—that’s eternal. That’s worth our focus. 

Today’s song: Joy Unto The World by The Afters

Untriumphantly: A People of Hope

This first week of Advent is the week of Hope!

Concerning love for the brothers we do not need to write you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other; and you do love all the brothers throughout Macedonia. But we urge you, brothers, to do it even more.

Also, make it your ambition to live quietly, to mind your own business and to earn your living by your own efforts — just as we told you. Then your daily life will gain the respect of outsiders, and you will not be dependent on anyone.

Now, brothers, we want you to know the truth about those who have died; otherwise, you might become sad the way other people do who have nothing to hope for. For since we believe that Yeshua died and rose again, we also believe that in the same way God, through Yeshua, will take with him those who have died. When we say this, we base it on the Lord’s own word: we who remain alive when the Lord comes will certainly not take precedence over those who have died. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a rousing cry, with a call from one of the ruling angels, and with God’s shofar; those who died united with the Messiah will be the first to rise; then we who are left still alive will be caught up with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and thus we will always be with the Lord. So encourage each other with these words.

1 Thessalonians 4:9-18 (CJB)

            This is a dark season. I’m not just talking about this year. In general, Decembers are dark. The days are short, the night is long. For many people, they begin to feel the effects of diminished vitamin D and seasonal depression can set in. Specific to this year, we may be missing some normalcy. We’re missing our trips, our shopping, and our parties. It’s just dark. It’s perfect for Advent. 

            Advent marks the beginning of the liturgical calendar. It is how we, as Christians, kick off our new year. That’s right! You don’t have to wait until January 1st to ring in the new year. It starts now. There is so much hope in a new year. We make New Year’s resolutions because we want to be better this year than we were in the last. This year, most people are excited to be leaving behind the dumpster fire that was 2020. We’re hopeful that this new year will bring with it something better. 

            But for Christians, this new year, this hope—it isn’t in what is around us. We’re not people with hope because of a vaccine, the government, or the media. I’m not saying we don’t care about and aren’t involved in those things; what I am saying is that is not where our hope lies. Our hope lies in Jesus. And during this season where we wait for His coming, our hope is in Emmanuel, God with us.

            I think it is funny that Paul gives us the secret to “the happy life”, as a youth once said to me. Live quietly, mind your own business, and earn a living with your own hands. We aren’t just milling about and getting through life because we are not a people without hope. We have hope. Jesus was born. Jesus died. Jesus was resurrected. That is why we have hope. We can encourage one another, knowing that we don’t have the grieve like the rest of the world. Our hope is in Jesus.

Today’s song: What A Year for A New Year by Dan Wilson

Advent Is Coming!

Advent is quickly approaching. This year, I’ve written a devotional titled “Untriumphantly”. This season, I’m encouraging you to embrace how ordinary December can be. I’m putting out the call to not just get by this Advent but to choose simplicity and have a deeply profound Advent. 20 devotions. 1 per weekday through the four weeks of Advent. Each will be set to release on the day it is to be read here on the blog. I’m also linking you to other Advent devotionals, articles, and even a craft that I have put out in years past. My prayer this Advent is to not get swept away in busyness but enjoy God-with-us this season.

The Benefits of Advent

Pocket-Style Advent Calendar

Advent Family Devotion Tips and Tricks

Personal Advent Devotional

Family Advent Devotional — (Week One) | (Week Two) | (Week Three) | (Week Four)

Godbold Academy 2020-2021: Logic Stage Plans

The logic stage in homeschooling lasts from about fifth or sixth grade through eighth grade, depending on the child. This is what we’d all typically call “middle school”. The logic stage is a bump up in difficulty, and I expect my logic aged children to be pretty much independent. I do not read the scheduled books to my logic students, they read all their books on their own except for Morning Basket. For the logic stage, I give the child a list of the work they need to do each day and they check it off as they complete it. I do check it at the end of the day or week, depending on the child. And we do discuss it, usually over dinner.

Bible

Herein is Love: Numbers (weeks 1-24)

Herein is Love: Deuteronomy (weeks 25-34)

History

Story of the World, Volume 1 (weeks 1-34)(This is the history spine for both the grammar and logic stages. If you have grammar aged kids and are reading the chapter to them, you can include the logic student in the reading. Logic students keep a list of the important people and dates from this reading. I plan 1-2 chapters each week to complete the entire volume in three 12-week terms.)

Story of the World, Volume 1, Activity Guide (weeks 1-34) (This activity guide has questions about each chapter and outlines to complete, along with activities and book suggestions should you choose to do them.)

Book of the Ancient World with Memoria Press Study Guide (2-3 days/week; weeks 1-12)

Famous Men of Greece with Memoria Press Study Guide (1-2 days/week; weeks 1-20)

Book of the Ancient Greeks with Memoria Press Study Guide (2-3 days/week; weeks 13-23)

Famous Men of Rome with Memoria Press Study Guide (1-2 days/week; weeks 21-35)

Augustus Caesar’s World (3-5 days/week; weeks 23-36)

Science

Nature Study: The Laws Guide to Nature Drawing and Journaling (weeks 1-36)

Core: General Science 2: Survey of Archaeology and Geology (weeks 1-36)

Language Arts

Grammar: Easy Grammar Plus (5 days/week; weeks 1-36)

Writing: The Creative Writer (weeks 1-36)

Literature

The Hobbit with Memoria Press Study Guide (weeks 1-10)

The Lightening Thief (weeks 1-11)

Imagine… The Great Flood (weeks 1-15)

The Bronze Bow with Memoria Press Study Guide (weeks 13-21)

The Sea of Monsters (weeks 13-22)

Imagine… The Ten Plagues (weeks 16-30)

The Children’s Homer (weeks 22-32)

The Titan’s Curse (weeks 23-36)

Logic

The Thinking Toolbox (2 days/week; weeks 1-19)

The Fallacy Detective (2 days/week; weeks 19-36)

Languages

Latin: Canon Press Latin Primer (weeks 1-36)

French: Rosetta Stone French (2-3 days/week; weeks 1-36)

Math

Strayer Upton Arithmetics (5 days/ weeks; weeks 1-36) (Book: 1, 2, 3)

Character

The Radical Book for Kids (1-2 days/week; weeks 1-35)

I keep everything planned out as seen above for each week. For the grammar stage, I try to plan the majority of the work Monday-Thursday and add extra subjects in on Fridays.

** This post contains affiliate links. Using affiliate links is a great way to support your favorite content creators. **

I encourage you, don’t feel like you have to buy all your school books new! Check out ThriftBooks.com for some great deals on used books. (That link is my referral link!) Also, check out Scribd, which is like Netflix for ebooks and audiobooks. (That link is my referral link!) There are so many great books available through both that will save you money. Also, remember to check your library. Libby is a great app that many library systems use where you can get ebooks and audiobooks through your local library. Of course, you can also max out your library card checking out great books, as well.

Godbold Academy 2020-2021: Grammar Stage Plans

The grammar stage in homeschooling spans from about kindergarten or first grade through fourth or fifth grade, depending on the child. I include my young ones in our grammar schooling, as they usually want to keep up with their siblings and they enjoy the readings and such. Some things are specific to the actual place the child is in a subject, some things are more universal. If you’ve never seen planning by stage, this may seem confusing that first and fifth graders can go by the same curriculum plans. But trust me, I’ve been combining ages for a long time and can tell you, even with the same sources, kids work and understand at the level they are.

Bible

The Ark, The Reed, and The Fire Cloud (4 days/week; weeks 1-17)

The Dreamer, The Schemer, and The Robe (4 days/week; weeks 18-32)

History

Story of the World, Volume 1 (1-2 days/week; weeks 1-34) (This is the history spine. There are additional readings for history, but this is the main portion of history. I cover 1-2 chapter each week to get through the entire volume in our three 12-week terms.)

Story of the World, Volume 1, Activity Guide (weeks 1-34) (This book is used for weekly activities and contains coloring pages and suggestions to “beef up” Story of the World.)

It’s Disgusting and We Ate It! (week 1)

You Wouldn’t Want to be a Pyramid Builder (weeks 2-3)

You Wouldn’t Want to be a Sumerian Slave (weeks 4-5)

Gilgamesh the King (week 6)

The Revenge of Ishtar (week 6)

The Last Quest of Gilgamesh (week 6)

One Grain of Rice (week 7)

The Story About Ping (week 7)

Anasi the Spider (week 8)

Temple Cat (week 8)

Baby Moses (week 9)

In Search of a Homeland (weeks 9-14)

Tales of Troy and Greece (weeks 13-20)

D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths (weeks 21-36)

Classical Kids (activity guide for making history activities)

Old Testament Days (activity guide for making history activities)

Science

Nature Study: Christian Liberty Press Nature Reader on Student’s Level (1-3 days/week; weeks 1-36)(individual readers availble for sale on Christian Book)

Core Science: General Science 2: Survey of Geology and Archaeology (just using the books for the grammar stage. The logic and rhetoric stages are using the full curriculum. This is our main science curriculum. We’re adding some more books to further study the topics found in these books.) (weeks 1-32) (Individual books: Archaeology, Geology, Fossil, Cave)

Geology Lab for Kids (weeks 33-36)

Rocks, Rivers, and the Changing Earth (weeks 1-28)

Archaeologists Dig for Clues (weeks 1-2)

The Street Beneath My Feet (weeks 3-4)

What is an Archaeologist? (weeks 5-6)

Ancient Civilizations (weeks 7-10)

Planet Earth Inside Out (Week 11)

Rocks, Fossils, and Arrowheads (week 17)

A Rock is Lively (week 19)

Rock Collecting for Kids (weeks 20-21; 28-32)

Caves and Caverns (weeks 22-25)

Jurassic Poop (week 26)

Let’s Go Rock Collecting (week 27)

Language Arts

Once kids can read, they start grammar. I do read the Literature books out loud for the younger kids. Free Reads are for kids old enough to read chapter books alone. If you’ve got a great reader, check out the books for the logic stage. If you’ve got ones learning to read, reading Bob books during the free reading time is a great option.

Grammar

Beowulf Grammar (4-5 days/week; weeks 1-36)

Literature Reads

The First Dog (week 1)

A Cry from Egypt (weeks 1-8)

Mummies Made in Egypt (week 3)

Mummies in the Morning (weeks 4-8)

Hour of the Olympics (weeks 9-12)

The Children’s Homer (weeks 13-20)

The Trojan Horse (weeks 15-18)

Romulus and Remus (weeks 21-22)

Aesop’s Fables (weeks 22-36)

Free Reads

The Mouse and the Motorcycle

Runaway Ralph

Ralph S. Mouse

Fortunately, the Milk

The Fantastic Mr. Fox

James and the Giant Peach

The Boxcar Children

Handwriting

Draw, Write, Now (1-2 days/week; weeks 1-36)

Logic

Creative Problem Solving (1 day/week; weeks 1-36)

Languages

My kids have been learning French. I usually don’t start Latin until the Logic stage.

My First French Lesson (1 day/week; weeks 1-36)

Math

Use whatever math works for your child. This is just what we use for this stage.

Math Mammoth on child’s level (4-5 days/week; weeks 1-36)

Character

The Mess Detectives and the Case of the Lost Temper (week 10)

Junior Comes Clean (week 11)

Bob and Larry and the Case of the Missing Patience (week 12)

Larry Makes a Choice (week 23)

All is Fair When We Share (week 24)

I keep everything planned out as seen above for each week. For the grammar stage, I try to plan the majority of the work Monday-Thursday and add extra subjects in on Fridays.

** This post contains affiliate links. Using affiliate links is a great way to support your favorite content creators. **

I encourage you, don’t feel like you have to buy all your school books new! Check out ThriftBooks.com for some great deals on used books. (That link is my referral link!) Also, check out Scribd, which is like Netflix for ebooks and audiobooks. (That link is my referral link!) There are so many great books available through both that will save you money. Also, remember to check your library. Libby is a great app that many library systems use where you can get ebooks and audiobooks through your local library. Of course, you can also max out your library card checking out great books, as well.

Godbold Academy 2020-2021 Curriculum

This school year, we’re going back to me fully planning the year. My home education ideals fall somewhere between Classical and Charlotte Mason. We’ve fully done both, and find that a mix between the two works best for us. I rely heavily on real books, but we don’t rely heavily on narration.

I wanted to share my plans with you because I know this isn’t something everyone likes to do. I know a lot of homeschool moms aren’t comfortable crafting an entire curriculum, or they don’t have the time or energy to do so. It just isn’t everyone’s “thing”. It is my “thing”, so I figured I’d share it, since I have it.

This year, we’re cycling back to Ancient History, which I am very excited about. We’ll have kids in all Classical stages and all Charlotte Mason forms. Essentially, I’ll have kids from elementary school to high school, so the plans for this year are for all grades. For simplicity’s sake, I’ve broken down the curriculum into four posts: Morning Basket, Grammar Stage, Logic Stage, and Rhetoric Stage.

Stages are not a one size fits all. You may notice the Logic Stage plans are too easy for your 8th grader, and you want to challenge them in certain areas. Go for it. You may think the Rhetoric assignments are too difficult for your 9th grade, bump them down in whatever subjects you choose or all of it. Swap out the books you don’t want for ones you do want. There are plenty of options out there, I’m just sharing with you what we’ll be doing.

You may notice I include some books that pure Charlotte Mason enthusiasts would consider twaddle. I try to include plenty of difficult great books for my kids to consume, but also know that I personally read twaddle from time to time for my own enjoyment. I’m just not opposed to letting kids read “fun” books (we’ll call them that instead of twaddle) to give them a break from the intense mental load of some great books. If you don’t like a book choice of mine, cool, don’t use it.

I’m simply putting this out there for anyone who wants to take a peek. Use it for your own curriculum. Use it for ideas to craft your own curriculum. Use it to look over and see options that exist. I’m just sharing.

Lent 2018

If you’re looking for my annual Lent family devotions, they are in book form this year! I was coming up with a way to make the family devotional more user-friendly. Scrolling through an entire week of blog posts is a bit messy. It is free, but it is messy. Then, I had this idea to add a personal devotional for moms to the front. In pitching the idea to The Pastor, we kind of thought, “Why just moms?” So, I enlisted his help in getting both a full 40-day devotional for all people and a 40-day family devotional written. We then put it on Kindle for ease-of-use. (It is also available in paperback if you’re not a digital person.)

The entire thing is really cohesive: The personal devotions and family devotions tie into each other, so you’ll all be walking the same spiritual path together. And as usual, the family devotional includes activities to do! Fun!

The theme of this year’s Lenten devotional is Refocus. Lent is a great time to look over everything and evaluate if you’re living the way you think you should be living. “Does my life reflect Christ?” It’ll challenge you to reevaluate where you put your time and money. It will ask you to reevaluate your priorities and commitments. Basically, it is going to step all over your toes and probably make you uncomfortable and you might even hate me for it. Or… you might refocus your life on the cross and do big Jesus-work this coming year. I think it’s worth the risk.

If you want a free devotional, all my previous years of Lent family devotions are still available here on the blog. Since Lent is always 40 days, always starting on Ash Wednesday and always ending on Easter, any of these can be used any year.

Lent Family Devotional 2017 – This family devotional looks into the life and ministry of Jesus.

40 Holy People – This is a Lenten devotional looking at the lives of those who have followed Christ with great courage and wisdom.

Fruit of the Spirit Family Devotional – This is not a Lenten devotional, but you can use it during Lent if you’d like. It is 9 weeks, so it is a little longer than Lent.

Click here to buy this year’s Lent devotional on Amazon.  My hope and prayer is for families to come together around a table and talk about Jesus. So, whatever you chose to do this Lent, be it using Refocus, using one of the free devotions on my blog, using another devotional book, or just reading through a book of the Bible together after dinner— make sure that you don’t miss Jesus during this season. Let the season bring you closer to Him and closer to your family.

Godbold Academy Spelling Program

I have never found a spelling program that I liked and my kids liked. So spelling has always been a struggle. Then this year, I sat down and figured out my own spelling program for the kids. It has been going really well, so I figured I would share it with you.

The best part of this program is that is is completely customizable for your child. So, if they have trouble with specific words, you can add those in. It is completely customizable to their level.

At the beginning of the year, I picked up these myndology cards on a ring at Walmart. I also grabbed an extra set of rings. I used a set plus a third of a second set of the cards per kid. And each child needs three rings.

I wrote a spelling word on each card. 100 words for the year. (The card come in packs of 75. So you could just do one set or double it. I just decided to not let the set determine the number and went for 100 words.) These are all the spelling words they have to learn this year. Just 100 words. Once the 100 words are learned, they are done with spelling for the year. This has been a big push to learn the words right the first time so they can be done with them.

You have three rings. One ring is all the words to be learned this year. The second ring is for the words of the week. The third ring is for mastered words.

Each week, the student chooses 10 words from the “to be learned” ring. Their choice.(I think ten is a great number for younger kids or struggling spellers. If your kids are fifth grade and above, they may be ready for more words at a time. I wouldn’t do more than 20 words in a week, though.) They place these ten cards on their “words of the week” ring. Those are the words they will focus on this week. Each day, I have them do a spelling activity. They have several activities to do each week. This varies with age level. You can mix and match whatever activities work best for your child or have them choose which ones they want to do each week.

Grade 3+ Activities:

– Write each word 3 times in cursive.

– Write each word 3 times in print.

– Look each word up in the dictionary and write the definition.

– Write a sentence using each word.

– Look each word up in the thesaurus and write three synonyms.

– Look each word up in the thesaurus and write an antonym.

Grade 1 and 2 Activities:

– Write each word on paper.

– Write each word on the chalkboard. (You can also have them write them on the driveway with sidewalk chalk, write them on the shower walls with soap crayons, write them in sand with their finger- anything to get a different “feel” when writing the words.)

– Spell each word out loud. (At this age, some of them like to tell a toy how to spell the word.)

– Write each word with a crayon.

– Draw a picture that reminds you of each word.

– Color each word. (Requires you to print each word in block letters to make a coloring page.)

After they have worked with their words all week, we have a spelling test or spelling bee on Friday. I let my kids choose if they want to write the words or spell them out loud. They hand me the “words of the week” ring and I quiz them. Every word they get correct, they get to move to the “mastered words” ring. Those are done. Words they get wrong go back on the “to be learned” ring and they will have to do all the work for them again next time they choose that word. So, even if they only spell 2 words correct, they are rewarded for those two words. And words they get wrong aren’t just gone and forgotten, they’ll come back to them again when they are ready.

Letting the kids choose the words of the week has been wildly successful. They feel more ownership with it and don’t resist spelling. They are more in control. My kids tend to do enjoy school more when they feel like they have some control over what they are learning. They also really like being able to see their progress on the rings. The “to be learned” ring shrinking and the “mastered words” ring growing.

I’m including some possible spelling word lists because that might help you. If your kids are doing a vocabulary program, you can grab the words from their vocabulary program. These lists are only to help you. You may find you have a sixth grader who is needing some refresher words from the first grade list- that is okay. You may have a third grader who loves to spell and wants challenging words from the middle school list. Some words may appear on multiple lists. I try to pay attention as my kids are writing to get an idea of what words are bringing them trouble. There are clearly an infinite number of words you can have them learn to spell.

first grade spellingsecond grade spellingthird grade spellingfourth grade spellingfifth grade spellingsixth grade spellingmiddle school spelling

Happy Advent Giveaway!

I’ve got a special Advent gift for one lucky winner! A Too Faced Peanut Butter and Jelly eyeshadow palette. I love this palette. The colors are so warm. You’ve got a little pop of color with the jelly color. This is a true all in one eyeshadow palette, meaning you can use just this palette to make a full eye look. No additional products needed. I liked it so much, I bought it’s sister palette Peanut Butter and Honey. And don’t worry, the Too Faced Peanut Butter palettes contain no actual peanut products. They say they smell like peanut butter, but I think they just smell like sweet vanilla cookies.

So, how can you win? Easy!

Comment here and get one entry.

Comment on Facebook and get one entry.

Share on Facebook and get one entry.

Subscribe to the blog and get one entry.

On St. Nicholas Day (December 6), I’ll draw a name to win this palette!