Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Homeschool High School Engish 1, a Co Op Class

I am still Homeschool Atheist Momma!

Some friends and I are working on having a co op day here at my home next fall. Are you familiar with a homeschooling co op day? While others may do a co op differently, for these events each parent is offering a class or two on co op day. The kids who have committed to the class sit in for the lesson.  It's that simple.  

Several moms and I are planning on having 4-8 classes offered at my home on Wednesdays for our families and for other homeschooling families that fit our profile. I've hosted this type of co op in the past and it has been quite wonderful. Chaotic, but wonderful.

These other moms are all very academic and brilliant and I expect that their classes will be very, very organized and comprehensive. We will have some advanced math courses, science, art, theater, and other things. Knowing these amazing women offering their talents to the co op, these courses will be excellent! Aren't parents amazing?????  Seriously.

Some of the shenanigans of my first English 1 class
Me, what will I be teaching?  I'll be doing English 1-ish, kinda like, in a way... And English 2...I'm not the greatest planner. But I do have a huge pile of materials that I will be using and, bonus, I have been reading lots of books to determine what we will be reading in my class. In the past two weeks I have read at least ten books, trying to figure out what books to bring to the class. 

Here is a list of what I have read in the last fourteen days!
  • Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
  • Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare
  • Night by Elie Weisel
  • The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
  • Pudd'Nhead Wilson and Those Extraordinary Twins by Mark Twain
  • The Chosen by Chaim Potok
  • Scrawl by Mark Shulman
  • Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
  • The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
  • The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy
  • Many poems
  • And many short stories 
    A FUN group of kids and some of my favorite people!
Before this reading extravaganza I also read the following books during this year for the same reason:
  • Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
  • Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer
  • I am Malala by Christina Lamb and MalalaYousafzai
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
  • The Old Curiosity Shop by Charles Dickens
  • The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
  • Cry, the  Beloved Country by Alan Paton
  • Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
  • The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-time Indian by Sherman Alexie
  • Rosencrantz and Gildenstern are Dead by Tom Stoppard
  • A few others whose titles are eluding me at the moment
I have read some phenomenal books! 
In the past when I have offered the English 1 class we have read Romeo and Juliet and To Kill a Mockingbird. Good stories. But I was just wanting to branch out a bit, stretch a bit. For this next class I'm not sure what our main reading will include, but I have plans to include these areas of study in my class in order that it can be included on a high school transcript. I will share my plans with you but keep in mind that I am still working on the schedule:
  • Poetry
  • Grammar
  • Editing/Proofreading
  • Short Stories
  • Writing Prompts
  • Referencing/citations
  • Vocabulary
  • Punctuation
  • Commonly Misspelled Words
  • Writing Process:  paragraphs, five paragraphs, two page essay
  • Book reports
  • Public speaking
  • Root words/prefixes/suffixes/Latin and Greek
  • Types of Writing 
  • This I Believe... 
  • Literary Terms
  • Blog writing: to be used during the week for additional reading

It is a ton of material to cover, but my experience has been that we can cover quite a bit during two semesters, or the equivalent of a typical school year.

Let me explain the blog idea a little bit because you will think that I am BRILLIANT to use it. Each teen will design a blog on blogspot.com that is to be shared between each student, their parents (if they chose), and me. Using that blog, I can tailor lessons just for each teen. I can give writing assignments during the week to those students who are motivated and I can use the blog to communicate with and engage those students who are not motivated.

I don't recommend that any parent take on a co op class of this magnitude unless you are feeling competent, supported, and ready to do such a thing. My friends who are participating in the co op with me all have kids who are in high school years and who have an eye on moving into dual enrollment at a local community college. We are all doing what we can for each other to get our kids prepared!

Also, I LOVE talking to other people who read!
I'd love to hear from YOU

so please leave your comment below.

Click to blog hop!
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  1. Hi there! We are moving to your area soon and will be really excited to meet you all!

  2. Hi, Jackie here from Le'ts Homeschool High School. I wanted to thank you for linking up with our May Blog Hop.

    Looks like you are very organized and the co-op will be a be success. We used to attend co-op classes, but as my daughter got older the classes got fewer and fewer for her age group. Glad you are making this available to teens who want it.


  3. That sounds so fun! You're right that if someone doesn't have as much time and energy, it isn't something anyone should take on. We did a Biology class with a group of parents this year, and since I also have a 3 year old and 1 year old, my participation was limited. Fortunately, we figured it out where one mom did lecture, another did lab, and I graded papers. Even with my little ones, I can grade papers after they go to bed. I'm so glad we collaborated because I couldn't have done Biology that well by myself!

    1. Well Done, Shannen!
      A determined group of homeschool moms can get anything done!

      Over the years our homeschool co op has had parents who have offered many long-term courses like the one that I offer, so I have had some excellent shoulders to stand on!


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