Episode #4: Enthusiasm Over the Long Haul

As a mom of 5, I find it very easy to push my eldest exuberantly forward due to my own enthusiasm and excitement that we finally get to read this book or the other. At the same time, I find myself realizing that the 5 year old and the toddler have actually not heard some of the books we read aloud repeatedly when the older 2 were young. And then, sometimes, I just can't figure out what I've done with the middle child. ;) How can I make sure that 1) We do not exasperate or expect too much too soon of the older children. 2) The younger kids don't "miss out" due to the fact that I forgot that just because I read a title 37 times doesn't mean I read it to them. And 3) I maintain the same level of enthusiasm and passion over the long haul, not fizzling out on the younger children. I want to make sure that the youngest get every bit the same delight and enthusiasm! Thanks! –Amy

Episode #3: What is a Theme?

"Can you elaborate on how to find the theme of a story? My friend says that theme cannot be prejudice, betrayal, innocence, etc. because those are just topics. She says that theme is what the author believes about the topic. For example, instead of saying trust is the theme, children should be taught to elaborate and say, "A person needs to learn how to trust themselves and others." Is this really important or is it just a different method of teaching theme? This is her reference for her belief: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9H6GCe7hmmA Thank you." -Rebecca

Episode #2: Keeping Lower Grade Students Engaged with a Socratic Discussion

"I bought Reading Roadmaps last year, intending to use it to teach a 4-6 grade literature class at our homeschool co-op this year. However, I found it didn't give me enough information as to how the actual class time should go and how to hold the kids' interest. Asking socratic discussion questions to a group of eighteen 4th to 6th graders for 55 minutes every week wouldn't work well...I ended up using interactive literature notebooks instead, combined with comprehension review games because they love games! Do you have any extra guidance for using Reading Roadmaps or any of your curriculum in a weekly classroom situation? Can you make a game out of socratic questions (I find that comprehension questions work better for games because there's a more definitive right or wrong answer). Have you ever used your curriculum to teach a roomful of wiggly children in a weekly classroom situation?" -Becky

Episode #1: Starting in the Middle

"I currently have a seventh grade daughter (13) that I am seriously considering bringing home from public school. I feel very strongly that the Center For Lit approach is exactly what she is needing. However, I am overwhelmed with the thought of starting all of this with a seventh grader. Is this even possible? Where in the world should I start? I homeschool our twin kindergarteners, and somehow starting from the beginning seems much easier. Thank you so much!"  -Stephani