For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this not of yourselves it is the gift of God, not of works, so that no one can boast. Ephesians 2:8-9

Monday, January 14, 2013

Virtual Curriculum Fair - Discovering a World of Logic and Order

Week 2 - Discovering Patterns: Mathematics, Logic, and Science.

Homeschooling Hearts & Minds Virtual Curriculum Fair ButtonThe topic for this week is not necessarily one that I like talking about but it's part of what we need to do in our homeschool. When I say that it is not that I dislike it, its more that Math, Logic and Science are not my strongest points, and my boys are not the type of kids that jump for joy when it is time to do Math or logic problems. They do not like the rigor and attention to details required in these type of activities. Zach is more of a Humanities kind of guy, Joho likes things that demand moving and jumping (though he really loves chess).

The boys have good logic and do not particularly struggle in Math - I attribute it  to their dad's genes, because I am not the conceptual kind of girl (growing up my family used to say I had a Joellienne logic (given that my name is Joelle).  But, back to the boys, though they do fine, they do not like to practice it. Math is the least favoured of their subject.

I have not done any formal logic training with them, but I do intend to, as they enter the dialectic and rhetoric stages. The Lord entrusted us with a mind and it is a requirement to learn how to use it properly.

I am happy with our Math curriculum - Math on The Level - which I supplement with stuff from the internet.  It focusses on teaching math concepts needed up to grade 8. For a description of it you can check my post in week 2 of last year 1st VCF. All I would add is that, after almost 2 years of using it, I have made it work for me so that it is not as teacher intensive.

Science, the boys love. I am not so sure what they like about it, though I think it is the hand-on aspect of it, because they really love when we have experiments. That said, they love learning facts of science. I allow them to watch a lot of TV shows that cover science, and they have assimilated a lot of information that way. I am not afraid of them hearing about all this evolution stuff on TV because I have taught and continue to teach them that God is the creator of all things. Even though they are still young they are able to understand that there is what science discovers, there is what scientists conclude and deduce, and there is what the Bible teaches. The important thing is to know and be able to differentiate, through the proper use of our minds.

One aspect of logic that I want my kids to have and develop is critical thinking. No ready-made answers, one must learn to think, process and wrestle with facts and always be ready to refine one's opinion.

I have endeavoured to teach the boys that we (humans) are on a quest to discover this world that God has entrusted us to live in and subdue. At the the same time, because God is infinite, all-wise and incomprehensible, lots will always remain a mystery, even though we will get glimpses of his glory through our discoveries, of patterns and of laws. The goal of all of it all is to praise Him and bring Him Glory. Whenever we do math, or science, or talk about laws of nature, I try to point back to God, its designer and sustainer.

I think this is true of any subject taught while homeschooling, but even more so, or more"in your face" so to speak, when it comes to discovering and studying laws of nature.

I think one reason why the boys love science is this sense of awe that seems to take hold of us whenever we study Math concepts, the phenomenon of physics or chemistry (the branch of science which they love most), or simply observe nature.

When it comes to science curriculum I love Real Science 4 Kids and Christian Kids Explore, as I think they are the best in accomplishing my goals in the science department, at least at the elementary level.

Praise God that this world has order and we can study it, some with better abilities than others!

Read more about other homeschoolers' takes on teaching math, logic and the like subjects:

Delight Directed Middle School Science? by Susan @ Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

The Hardest Part of Math by Kristi @ The Potter's Hand Academy

A Tour Through Our Math and Science Life by Christy @ Unexpected Homeschool

What Works for Us…Math by Piwi Mum @ Learning & Growing the Piwi Way

Math Art – Geometry by Julie @ Highhill Education

It's Math-magical by Missouri Mama @ Ozark Ramblings

Virtual Curriculum Fair: Fun and Games with Math by Tonia @ The Sunny Patch

Discovering Patterns by Lisa @ The Golden Grasses

Math for the Natural by Erin @ Delighting in His Richness

Virtual Curriculum Fair~ Discovering Patterns by Karyn @ Teach Beside Me

Too Many Math Programs or Not by Linda B @ Homeschooling6

Virtual Curriculum Fair:  Math and More!  by April @ Coffee, Cobwebs, and Curriculum

The post where I admit I was wrong by Kristen H. @ Sunrise to Sunset

High School Math - Beyond the Textbook by TechWife @ A Playground of Words

Discovering a World of Logic and Order by Joelle @ Homeschooling for His Glory

2013 Virtual Curriculum Fair- Discovering Patterns: Mathematics, Logic, and Science by Leah C @ As We Walk Along the Road

The Plans of Mice and Math (My Math in Focus review) by Chelli @ The Planted Trees

Rightstart Math is right for us! by Leann  @ Montessori Tidbits

Our Favorite Homeschool Math Curriculums by Wendy @ Homeschooling Blessings



Susan said...

I like to refer to the 4 "Rs": Reading, 'riting, 'rithmetic, and REASONING. Our ability to reason is a vital gift from God and we should embrace it.

Thank you for contributing to the Virtual Curriculum Fair this week!

Kristi said...

Our big challenge for the dialectic stage is learning *how* to think, not *what* to think. I think transitioning to that is always a bit of a challenge for parents. Wonderful post, thanks for sharing what you use!

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