Thoughts on the second semester of homeschool

This comes a couple weeks later than the end of second semester, but I have an empty week here, and I don’t have one earlier, so here we are.

This post was originally set for the March Break, but as that got moved to April, so did this.

I am extremely pleased with how well homeschooling went this semester. There were a couple weeks that we were not able to complete all the activities, but overall, we had a lot of fun and Dragon didn’t miss the activities that we didn’t do.

The worksheets were a great success, and I won’t be changing how they worked. Dragon loves the math worksheets especially. If I could remove one, I’d get rid of the counting worksheet, but since that’s her favourite, I won’t be.

The biggest struggle we’ve got is convincing Dragon to speak French. She seems convinced that she can’t do it. Although she knows individual words, but can’t seem to pick them out when people are talking to her, and she doesn’t try to meld them into sentences on her own either. We’re just continuing to soldier on.

Thoughts on the first semester of homeschool

Overall, I am incredibly happy with how well the homeschooling of Dragon went this semester. We were able to coordinate with her virtual school teachers, and supplemented her assigned schoolwork with pop culture and other activities.

However, some things are going to change next semester, as I feel like the usefulness is not to it’s full potential.

Overview of each section:

Dance

Ballet and martial arts on alternate days – this will stay the same, although hopefully we’ll be able to do more martial arts.

Music

Singing, listening to different pieces, learning piano – I need to remember to change the disc more often! Piano will continue as long as Dragon and my mother are okay with it.

Crochet

The project she is working on (currently she is making herself a poncho) – We’re going to keep working on this in the new year.

Basic Information

We talk about the days of the week and play games with the cutouts of the names. We do the same thing with the names of the months of the year. We are also doing the seasons of the year, but verbally. – We will keep doing this. She’s doing well with it.

Printing words

This is going to be changing. Rather than asking questions and having one-word answers, I am going to change this to be a bunch of words related to the movie. Hopefully this will help to increase her vocabulary.

Counting objects/math-type activities

This will also be changing. I am going to have two different worksheets in here. One will be a grid similar to this past semester, although I’ll be making it more squares instead of 25. The other will be an addition/subtraction and/or pattern worksheet.

Storytime

This will continue, as Dragon enjoys it, especially since the virtual school gives excellent online books to read.

Vampirina or other short Disney Junior shows will be watched one episode/day in French.

Activities

These have been a big hit and I will continue doing them.


I will be continuing this blog in the new year with a whole new set of movies, sarting with these four in January:

Morality Without God

I came across an argument on the internet the other day that stated that Morals could not exist without a God.

The idea being that Morality is intrinsically tied to Religion because of the authority of God.

I’m not going to argue the benefits of religion, atheism, or anything in between. Let’s stick to morals.

Merriam-Webster defines Morality as, “beliefs about what is right behavior and what is wrong behavior” and defines ethics as, “rules of behavior based on ideas about what is morally good and bad”

There is also the philosophical discipline of Ethics witch, “deals with ideas about what is good and bad behavior: a branch of philosophy dealing with what is morally right or wrong”

It’s extremely easy to get lost in a doctorate level of research into Ethics and Moral Reasoning. Let’s stick to a derivative definition that says Morality is the beliefs about what is right and wrong and Ethics are the rules around right and wrong.

Where do morals come from?

  • If morality is the purview of God than it should be unchanging and perfect.
  • If it’s the purview of man, morality is in constant flux.

One of the statements above is false.

Yep. Good job, it’s the first one. I don’t care what your stance on God is, humanity is flawed and it’s humanity that interprets God’s theoretical Morality.

It could even be argued that the changes in what we see as Right and Wrong are due to our own faults and not God’s.

If we take God out of the equation we have to assume that either Morals have a evolutionary survival benefit, or a societal benefit.

So that means that Morals come from one of two places:

  • Humanities interpretation of God’s morals, or
  • Humanities ideals on what is best for ourselves and each other

Either way Morality is the domain of humanity. Either we decide for ourselves or interpret God, the end is the same; Humanity chooses.

Aren’t Morals set in Stone?

No, and consider yourself lucky. The morals of the past included all kinds of crazy things. At several points in history it was considered Right to own people. It was proper to cut off genitals to protect royalty. In the days of the Witch Hunts you could be killed for being single and attractive.

Morals vary from society to society. What is considered Right for some is considered disgusting by others. We don’t eat Cats, Dogs, or Horses but in some societies that is considered ok. Stop to think logically and figure out why a Cat or Dog is morally superior to a chicken, pig, or cow.

But everyone in my society has the same morals

Nope! Ask a friend who’s a proud vegetarian and then go talk to someone who’s a proud carnivore and tell me everyone in your society has the same morals.

Conclusion

Morals can exist without God. It’s up to us to think about what is Right and Wrong and not just accept what someone else says.

Doubt and critical thinking are the best friends of Morals. Always think how your actions affect others and how they affect the world.

If we all do this we’ll live on a much better planet.

What are your thoughts of Morality?

Éric

 

Thoughts Nov 10, 2008

There are few things that make Mondays seem exciting, The Pirates of the Caribbean Soundtrack is certainly one of them.

Dollhouse, the new Joss Whedon show, and Terminator The Sarah Connor Chronicles are going to be back to back on Fridays in Winter. The only show that’s managed to thrive in that timeslot on Fox was X-Files. This is the timeslot that killed Firefly. Sigh.