Friday, April 16, 2010

I Knew I Loved Her.

I have a girl crush on Ree Drummond aka The Pioneer Woman.  I can't even begin to count the ways that this woman is amazing.  The photography, the recipes, the rapier wit, the love stories.  She has charmed the SPANX off of countless women across the nation, myself included.  But nothing cemented my love affair with The Pioneer Woman like this recent post entitled Shakespeare Can Be Fun!  Here is just an excerpt from this post that turned Ree into my Rosalind (from As You Like It, not R&J).

(Image from The Pioneer Woman)

If you have young children and would like to expose them to Shakespeare at an early age, they’re seriously not to be missed.

Let me take a minute to make a homeschooling confession: if it were entirely up to me, I’d spend every hour of homeschooling teaching literature, writing, grammar, Latin, and other English-related disciplines. History, too—I simply inhale it. Now, Math? I wish it would go away forever. I hate it. It’s mean. Shoo, math…SHOO!

But English? It’s important to me. Literature? Vital. It’s important to me that my kids grow up at least being aware of the classics: Shakespeare, Homer, Chaucer, Austen, Twain, Tolstoy…shall I go on? But the problem is, the classics in their original form are often (almost always) way, way too much for a punk to grasp, which means they often aren’t exposed to these works until junior high, high school, or even later.

Or never.

Early in my homeschooling journey, I was able to find some kid-friendly versions of classics such as The Odyssey, Beowulf, The Iliad, Canterbury Tales, and many, many others. The idea here is to introduce young kids to the storylines of these books, to the characters, the twists and turns, and some of the details. Then, when they’re older and pick up the real thing, they already have the framework cemented in their memory and can then concentrate on the language, the subplots, and the intricacies of the writing itself. I take the same approach to history: teach them everything, even the complicated things, early on. Only make it fun, colorful, memorable. Then later, when they have to delve more deeply into things, they don’t have to get mired in the basics. This approach is one that just works for me and my kids....

Seriously.  I'm in love.  Please go read the rest of this post; it is well worth it!  Thank you Pioneer Woman!!!

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