Tuesday, July 03, 2007

evolution, creation & history, oh my!

so i'm not real happy so far with AO's history books (from their year 1 book list). well i like an island story...but i dropped the other main book...trial and triumph i think? right away cuz its very religious, specifically christian....and i'm omitting the christian aspects out of our rendition of charlotte mason education. my husband and i are not christian and not interested in raising our children christian. i don't have a problem with them learning about christianity...it will be a part of their education, as christianity is such an integral part of so much history, especially american history and the holidays and such we observe to this day...and i've even told my father, a recently retired united methodist pastor, that i'm totally ok with him sharing his beliefs about christianity with my children. as long as he doesn't teach any dogma...which he won't because that's not at all what he's about. he's never been one to shove his beliefs down anyone's throat and i know he respects (doesn't like it, but respects), my husband and my beliefs and so will not try to proselytize to my children. :) i want my children to learn about all the diversity of religious beliefs out there...not just one belief system.

there is a lot of christian conservatism present in ambleside online's curriculum (charlotte mason education in general as well) so i just dropped that. but i continue to be concerned with their overall conservative xtian slant. i initially thought it would be easy to just drop the biblical references and blatantly religious books. but i'm starting to realize there's more to this slant than just a few books. they have a really different focus than i am interested in, so i may just be veering off on my own version of CM soon, away from AO. but that's ok. CM is very flexible with adding your own books and such.

and then i've read a few of the stories now to maeven from the 50 famous stories retold book and i can't say i like any of them yet. actually a little horrified at the violence and themes of war and killing. this is listed on the AO year 1 booklist under history and i know history has lots of violence in it but i am not interested in exposing my 6.5yr old to the gore yet. now granted, 50 famous doesn't' get too gory, but still, the killing and the violence is there, even if not blatantly in your face....and i'm just not getting how its historical either...seems like mythology and folklore...so i am going to be dropping that one as well...i read on ahead and still don't see anything i personally consider quality reading.

so there is a wonderful secular CM list that i'm making good use of. i just post there to get info on what i might not want to include in CM homeschooling and what they recommend to replace it, usually with a secular focus. so i posted about how i'm not really happy with the history for year 1 so far. and someone gave me some wonderful advice! i'm probably going to go with the history curriculum "story of the world" which some friends have recommended and lots of people online, secular and non. but this woman on the secular list also told me that she did a lot of evolution, creation stories from around the world and prehistory before starting SOTW. i'm really liking this idea! so i'm starting to collect some of the books that she recommends, from the library where possible...check them out and see which ones we might like...

i'm particularly interested in checking out the creation stories. i'm all about mythology and folklore from around the world...and i'm ok with including biblical stories with that as well...just not alone. i want to show all the different ideas of creation that people around the world have and let the kids see how beautiful these stories can be!

of course i won't find a thing on evolution on the main CM lists, since most of those people are so conservative and scoff at evolution...so silly to me, but to each his own. so i'll stick with where i can find the info i need. starting to compile a list of good books on these subjects and i'm going to create some CM webpages on fresno family so that i can keep the list online for others to view and also for my own records. i really want to creat a whole section for secular CM homeschooling since there doesn't yet seem to be a lot out there yet. i'll just keep records of what i find to work for us and let others take what they like from it.

so now i just have to get us started working on a book of centuries! that sounds so fun, if i can just get us moving in that direction!

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