A new section of The Pelican Society is now open to our annual subscribers! We have begun the process of uploading our online seminar archives, beginning with Adam’s first Teachers in Service course, to this library. Over the coming months, other titles will include Missy’s Making the Leap seminar (a course on transitioning from picture books to some of the tradition’s more challenging works) and our Intensive seminars on titles like The Scarlet Letter and Pride and Prejudice.
Oh man. This is the part of teaching we could do without. Discipline can be particularly challenging in the homeschool where teacher and parent blur together. How do we navigate it?
Join us for our next Office Hours conversation October 25th at 4:00pm Pacific Time!
Join us as we look into the art of the interpretive question.
Join us for our last discussion of Jane Austen's Persuasion on August 8th! NOTE: If you signed up for All the Light You Cannot See, you will need to sign up again for the new title. Also, you can still sign up if you have not attended the other sessions on this novel!
A new Pelican Question has been posted in the Pelican Forum!
What rituals and traditions does your family observe on the first day of school (even if its not in the fall)? What have you done in the past or plan to do now to set a good tone for the year? What helps you feel prepared for the new academic calendar?
Post in this thread by August 24th for a chance to win a $25 gift card to Coldstone Creamery (or an ice cream shop near you). Be sure to hashtag your post #pelicanquestion – this will make the conversation searchable in the Muut top bar.
Over the last year we have been blessed to see this posse grow a great deal, and now that we have so many voices and perspectives in our group, we would really love the chance to get some good community conversation happening inside the forum. If we've learned anything these past two years, it's that there is no encouragement quite like Pelican encouragement! So to that end, we're going to start implementing the “Pelican Question.” We'll do this about twice a month. We'll post a topic for conversation, and whoever participates in the thread will automatically be entered to win a sweet prize.
Go to the Pelican forum, search "#pelicanquestion," and reply to our newest post to get started!
What is the point of studying literature? Don't we just want our students to enjoy and be moved by the stories? Will studying literature ruin its magic? Come join us on July 12th as we discuss these important questions!
Due to overwhelming popular demand, we've shuffled around the reading assignments for All the Light We Cannot See to get us through the book just a little more quickly. The discussion dates look the same for May and June, but the new readings will allow us to still maintain a slower pace without stretching the novel out past the point of interest. :) And, of course, as an added benefit it will allow us to move on to our next selection sooner, at which point we will be incorporating a bi-weekly discussion (also due to popular Pelican demand).
The Book Club webpage, which you can find by clicking the button below, has been updated to reflect these changes.
Thank you for all of your enthusiasm at our recent discussion meeting! We had such a blast and were completely blown away, and look forward to making these get togethers a more frequent part of our lives!
What are the pros and cons of joining a co-op? How do you find one right for you? And once you're in one, how do you maintain a balance between it and your personal homeschool?
How can you make sure that what you're teaching your students now will prepare them for the future? What if they're not ready? Is it too late?
Here at CenterForLit we talk long and loud about the benefits of using picture books to practice good reading. They're shorter, and the elements of fiction are usually more pronounced – but the ideas can be just as meaty! Now we're putting our money where our mouth is and providing you with a brand new collection, written by Missy Andrews, of teacher guides on four beautiful children's books for your next free selection. Whether you use them to introduce your youngsters to discussing stories or enjoy them as a good reminder with your older students, we hope your family will have fun with these classic picture books!
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
For the first time we're releasing the Office Hours schedule for the entire year all at once and giving you the chance to sign up for events in advance! Check out the 2018 list and register for our next meeting on March 22nd:
Classics Club: The Wind in the Willows may be out of stock, but it is now available for streaming as a free, exclusive benefit of your Pelican Society membership!
The Iliad guide is here! Complete your ancient epics teacher guide set with our good friend Sam Johnson's in depth treatment of Homer's classic. This guide will equip you to engage in powerful conversations with your students about Achilleus's rage, Homer's poetics, and human neediness.
Are you ready for the post-holiday slog? Christmas is behind us and spring break seems a million miles away. Meanwhile, unmet goals and unfulfilled expectations threaten to sabotage your classroom even before the tinsel comes down.
Just in time for the "dog days of winter," director Adam Andrews leads another Teachers In Service event for parents and teachers seeking to avoid the winter blues!
Our theme this January is Identity, and we'll be asking and answering questions like Where Does My Identity Come From? Who Are My Students, and Who Says? What Are My Most Important Goals? and What is the Definition of Success as a Teacher? Our goal is to remember who we really are and what we're really striving for, and to build each other up for a 2018 full of rest and peace.
It is not necessary to have attended the August 2017 Teachers in Service seminar to benefit from this one. However, for those who did join us in August, our goal will be to look deeper into our creaturehood as a reinforcement of the definitions of "education," "teacher," and "student" that we developed last time.
Hello Pelican friends! Another six weeks have come and gone, and that means you have a new free teacher guide coming your way soon. So be sure to grab Little Dorrit before it disappears this weekend in exchange for a guide on Stephen Crane's Red Badge of Courage.
Nothing calls for cuddling up in a blanket on a cool fall day quite like Mary Shelley's Frankenstein. A Pelican suggestion, we landed on this title because we think you'll also appreciate the length of this novel during these busy back-to-school days.
But short certainly does not mean shallow. This book is brimming with juicy ideas for us to discuss together. We can't wait to hear your thoughts on the man-made monster and his god-like creator Thursday November 16th at 4:00 pm PST/ 7:00 pm EST!
Whether it's journaling, commonplacing, or copybooks, keeping notes on what you read can be a great way engage with the material and make sure it stays with you after you turn the last page. It can most certainly offer a more human alternative to the worksheet or comprehension question for a student.
But why is that true? What is the purpose of a reading journal, and what kinds of things should we encourage our students to journal about? How do we make sure that even in our journaling we are not "using" literature or disrespecting the author? And where do we start?
Join us on Thursday November 2nd at 1:00 pm PST / 4:00 pm EST for a conversation on this very issue!
We've all been there before. We begin the year with such enthusiasm, but just a few weeks (days?) in finds us behind schedule, overbooked, and overwhelmed. And yes, we know that grace is sufficient and our identity is not hanging on our failure or success...but still, some things would certainly be a lot easier if we could cultivate a little diligence in our classroom.
How can we do that? Where does diligence come from and how can we ensure its survival? Join us September 21 at 1:00 Pacific Time / 4:00 Eastern Time to wrestle with this age-old issue.
When an everyday baseball game gets heated, Reuven Malter doesn't know that his young life is about to change forever. Chaim Potok's gorgeous story of friendship and fatherhood is sure to capture your hearts, and now this guide by Emily Andrews is available to assist you, the teacher, in opening the door to profound and thought-provoking conversations that you and your students are sure to remember for a very long time. You are not going to want to miss this one!
One of the great works on educational philosophy from the 20th century, C.S. Lewis's The Abolition of Man stands behind much of what we do here at CenterForLit. (As does most of Lewis's canon, if we're being honest...)
And since it's summertime and we have some free head space to contemplate the past academic year and look forward to the next, we thought it might be fun to delve into this accessible reflection on the state of modern culture and education. It is also the winner of our Pelican survey, so many of you must have thought so too!
We've never tackled a work of non fiction together in the Pelican Book Club, and we think it'll be exciting to mix things up a little. But don't feel intimidated! Lewis is a very clear writer and although his ideas are rich and deep, we're all here to try to understand them better together.
So we hope you'll join us Thursday August 10th at 4:30pm PST / 7:30pm EST for a time of reflection and encouragement with our dear friend Clive Staples!
It's time for a new free teacher guide! We are pleased as can be to offer you Megan's new guide to Jane Austen's beloved classic. Summer is always a great time to sit back and revisit Pemberley. And while Elizabeth and Darcy's story is always a crowd pleaser for the girls, might we suggest that its themes can be universally enjoyed? Pride and Prejudice gets a bad reputation for being the mushy romance, but it is hardly that at all. We hope that this guide will lead your family into fabulous discussions about the true meaning of love, man's imperfect nature, and the redemption to be found in grace and forgiveness.
Summer is here! And while you are hauling out the pool toys and planning your family's next great adventure, somewhere in the back of your mind you know that fall will be here sooner than you would like. You're exhausted and ready to burn the homeschooling books, but you're also a little afraid of entering the upcoming academic year unprepared. How can we both get the rest we need and ready ourselves for the next go around? Are you allowed to take a little "me" time, or is there no rest for the weary? Grab your ice tea and join the Pelicans for a little strategy session on this subject Thursday July 13 at 1:00pm PST/ 4:00pm EST.