Tuesday, February 05, 2008

School wise, Part 3: Andrew's turn (also long)

And now it's Andrew's turn. At this point in his homeschooling career, Andrew is mostly self-taught. That is the wonderful thing about raising children to be internally motivated...if you somehow succeed in instilling in them the desire to learn, the discipline to get work done, and the curiosity to follow their interests, your work as the mother of a homeschooling high schooler is much easier. Actually, I think we don't instill that curiosity; it is there all along. Sadly, however, many children have it "schooled" right out of them. The goal of learning because you are interested in the subject, because you want to know is, in many kids, snuffed out. But that's a topic for another day. Suffice it to say, by the grace of God, all of our high schoolers have retained a healthy degree of interest in wide ranging subjects and have been self-directed and able to govern themselves, managing their time and school work well with little or no haranguing from Coty and me. It's a good thing because especially with Andrew, there were times that I felt I let him "slip through the cracks" a bit. He plugged away, though, and has done well, perhaps in spite of, not because of, his mother!

(An aside...One child, who will remain unnamed, never appeared to be particularly interested in his schooling, but I think it was a ruse...I am happy to report that I spent about 45 minutes on the phone with him last week and he did almost ALL the talking, telling me about his freshman economics class and why our country's economy is on the skids and what he likes about philosophy and sociology. Last semester he discussed the intricacies of the fluid mosaic model that he was learning about in biology. So I am, needless to say, delighted that the love of learning seems to have kicked in, in earnest, for said unnamed child. Fall semester, freshman year in college is not a bad time for this to happen...)

But this post is supposed to be about Andrew and what he is doing now so let me get on to that...

French - his most favorite subject, his delight, and perhaps his college major in the coming years. He is studying on his own using all kinds of resources including books from a very generous private school French teacher, internet resources, and an advanced conversation class with Alliance Francaise of Charlotte. He also began tutoring a younger high school student and this has been very good for cementing his knowledge of basic grammar and vocabulary. If you want to really learn something, teach it to someone else. That's what he's been doing this year.

Science this year is Physics - using a basic text and participating in the nJoy high school physics class and lab. He'll also be finishing up the Teaching Company's Human Anatomy and Physiology video course

Calculus - again, thank you, Coty, resident math whiz.

World literature - lots of good reading...

American government for this semester which is mainly a focus on the presidential nominating process as well as a review of the Constitution and functions of the three branches of government. We're using resources from the library and online as well as following the nominating process.

World History, again using the video course from the Teaching Company.

Music Appreciation has been with Joel and Matthew when he's around - work at Panera and French class sometimes interfere. But, Andrew also studies the cello with a private teacher and plays in a youth orchestra.

Art Appreciation this spring is a survey of Art History using lots of books that we own and books from the library...Janson's History of Art, The Annotated Mona Lisa, and a lovely book on the Louvre that I just borrowed from my dad. (Since, Lord willing, Andrew will travel and/or live in Paris one of these days, it seemed fitting to become familiar with the Louvre).

This is one hard working boy. I am happy to report that his efforts and accomplishments have already been rewarded by the offer of the A.J. Gordon Honors Scholarship at Gordon College. Big brother, Jonathan, is rooting for Andrew to go to Gordon. He will, however, be graduated and probably on the other side of the pond by next fall so if Andrew matriculates at Gordon, Jonathan won't be there to show him the ropes and enjoy his company. But no decision on that til mid-March, since A's waiting to hear from the other colleges to which he has applied. Stay tuned...we are all eager to see where and how the Lord will lead our young man in his college years.


the Olsons said...

Jonathan's not the only one rooting for Gordon! Andrew's big sister would very much like to have him close by and can do plenty of "ropes-showing" over the phone. In fact, she might even be persuaded to come out in person... ;)

Beth said...

Yeah, sweetie, that would be one of plusses of Gordon. You two would get to see each other more and we'd get to see you all when we came up!