I enjoy sharing my book hauls so you can gather some ideas for your next library visit. We are well embedded in the grammar stage of classical learning, which means we are focused on the who, the what, the when. Sometimes we learn the how and why, but I don’t necessarily embellish for topics for things that are complex like things of historical nature. Rather, we make indulgences in science to learn the why or how of things, listen to more music or look at more art. More often we are just out exploring nature and the things around us.
Let’s get into the book haul now.
We happen to have the timeline cards for classical conversations, and the science cards. We also have a science encyclopedia. But when I approach a new section of learning for CC, I look up about three weeks of information at a time. This happens one of two ways:
Method one. Online in my library’s online catalogue… in this case I ask the library to reserve the books for me and set them aside. This allows me the flexibility of picking them up from the check out area at anytime, kids in tow or not
Method two. At the library either by myself or with the kid’s librarian’s help… in this case I need my husband’s help focusing on my kids while I search
Before I go searching and compiling. Before I use either pick up method, I just make a list of the upcoming topics covered by CC. In this case, it was weeks 11-14. I just literally handwrite a list starting with the timeline, history, science, math, English and geography topics. And in that list, I look for overlapping subjects, so I can consolidate the books I need if possible.
I also look up the book list from Half A Hundred Acre Wood’s blog online. And the kindergarten, preschool, and picture books lists from my local library, including early readers. And note any upcoming holidays.
Back to compiling my books. If I’m using method one, then while I’m logged in to the library’s catalogue I write down call numbers and sections where I will find the topics I want to cover. Then I literally go hunting, comparing a few books from each section to make sure I have one appropriate for my young Kinder-aged son. I have a heavy preference for cartoon books, comic books, picture books, story books or rhyming books if I can find related ones. Next, a heavy preference for simple explanatory books. We may not read every one word for word. Sometimes I summarize. Sometimes we soak in the pictures if the book is very advanced but that’s all that was available.
I may have to ask the librarian for help if certain books are missing. See how not everything is crossed off my lists? That’s okay!
Here’s how my lists end up looking before I go hunting.
If I’m using method 2, I look at user ratings to help me decide which ones to pull.
My kids also get to pick books at random that they’d enjoy.
This is what we ended up with for weeks 11-14 for Cycle 2 of classical conversations.
In my last book haul, you’ll see we covered Week 11 already. I don’t mind doing weeks over again, whatsoever. We have a break week due to Thanksgiving, so we can take advantage of that buffer.
This is where the type A in me halts to a grand stop. We read twice a day, before rest time and bed time. We read four or five books… or if the books are long, a chapter… or if the books are really long, a page. We “dog ear” where we left off and pick it up again whenever we feel like it.
As our three weeks comes to an end we either return the books we’ve had enough of, or renew the books we want more time with.
We are discovering so much this way! My son’s favorite book from the last haul was called “Plagues, Pox, and Pestilence”. I never would have guessed that he’d be so into that! And on our drive today he proclaimed “I really love Buzz Aldrin” and asked me if I knew about Vostok missions.
Here’s one more view of the book haul for weeks 11-14 for Cycle 2 for you.
There’s no way around the fact that this is time-consuming. Method one takes a solid hour and a half for me to cover three CC weeks. Method two takes me a good two hours. But we are finding the benefits are innumerable.
I didn’t include the silly books my sons picked this week or the early readers, since I am focusing on how you can do a CC haul.
We are in the grammar stage, but my young Kindergartener wants to know what he’s memorizing, so off we go every three weeks to fill in some of those learning pegs with a little meat.
While some moms have impressive book collections, we don’t have the space or money to purchase all these books every week, and I’d feel gridlocked if I did it that way anyhow. I do, however, prioritize making the time.
I hope this helps some of you enjoy CC more!