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And now for something we DO like…

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, I post a picture and just a few words.

On Tuesday, I mentioned that our household is 6/6 for not liking math.

(Which I think is just fine.   We don’t love math, but we faithfully teach it/learn it!)

There was a lively discussion in the comments on the math post, and one reader mentioned that people tend to either love math/science or grammar/vocabulary/literature/history.

In our house, we definitely fall into the second camp.

Pretty much no one here has ever cried about grammar or vocabulary or spelling, almost no one needs help to finish those assignments, and they get very few answers wrong in these subjects.

(Math, on the other hand, has brought about the shedding of quite a few tears. 😉 )

All of my kids are good readers too, and half of them began reading before they even started kindergarten.

story of the world

History?   That’s never been a problem for the kids or me either.   I’m especially fond of Susan Wise Bauer’s Story of the World series, which I’ve been using with Sonia and Zoe.

It’s such a fascinating curriculum, and I only wish it had been around when I was a kid.

(My world history book was all, “date, date, fact, fact, date, fact, date.”   Basically completely unmemorable.)

This history curriculum is so engaging, though, and I’m learning about things I never even remember reading about in my childhood.   Plus, I love all the recommend reading suggestions, and so do my kids.

(As I type this, Zoe is on the couch reading a historical novel that goes with what we were reading about the end of the Romanov dynasty. And she’s choosing to do this in her own spare time.)

You know how I can tell I just naturally love history more than math?

After we finish a history lesson, I find myself wanting to know more about what happened.

What made Eva Braun tick?   Why did Joseph and Magda Goebbels decide to kill their children?   What did the Fuhrerbunker look like?

(Why yes, we ARE reading about the end of World War II right now. How could you tell? 😉 )

So, I read more just for fun and I check out books from the library, and I find myself anxious to tell Mr. FG what we’ve learned about.

But when we finish a math lesson, I never am tempted to read more about a concept, and I’m not prone to thinking a new math concept would make stimulating dinner conversation.

I know there are families that are just the opposite, who love to discuss math concepts at the dinner table, and I think that’s great (though it’s hard for me to imagine. 😉 )


I guess I’m breaking with the Tuesday/Thursday theme because 470 is more than just a few words. I’d better stop rambling now, or I’m gonna hit 500.   😉


Do you find the the math/science vs. words/history applies to you?   I’d love to hear about it!

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Jacqueline P

Thursday 23rd of April 2015

I'm looking at curriculum for next year for my going to be 1st grader and preschooler do you think The Story of the World would be engaging for them, so far we've just had a very broad overview of some points in history using the living long ago book. Thanks for you opinion.


Thursday 23rd of April 2015

Well, it would depend some on the kids, but I'm thinking they might be a bit on the young side. The words of Story of the World are engaging, but there's not much in the way of illustrations, which seem important for preschoolers. I might wait until your preschooler is in kindergarten or first grade and then start it with both of them (doing two separate grades at once has not been a problem for us. Sonia and Zoe are two years apart and are doing fine together with Story of the World.)


Wednesday 22nd of April 2015

LOL @ the family discussing math around the dinner table... my boyfriend and I actually do have some pretty nerdy conversations while cooking, although usually more science than math (I'm a geologist and he went to school for engineering).

Interestingly, I don't think that dichotomy really fits for me. Never was particularly interested in history (although I guess in elementary school I read a lot of historical fiction), although getting into genealogy in the last year has made me a teeny tiny bit more interested. But I was ALWAYS a word nerd. All through K-12 I read and wrote a ton, and went to college planning to be a high school English teacher. My test scores were always highest in reading and writing, and although I was pretty good and I legitimately thought I was bad at science. Turns out I don't suck at science, just lab work (so hard/stressful trying to be ultra clean and precise at everything!!), and I LOVE understanding how the earth works, so I changed my major to geology and here I am years later with two geology degrees working as a scientist. I still love to read and write, though :)


Wednesday 22nd of April 2015

Preciseness (is that a word??) isn't my strong suit either. I've always felt my big-picture-thinking self wouldn't make a good scientist. Or heart surgeon. Ha. Details just don't come that easily to me, so it would be fitting a square peg into a round hole.

Rebecca B. A. R.

Monday 20th of April 2015

I think most people think that people either like math/science or reading/history/english. It really struck home with me when my mom (who is a retired math teacher) told me that in college she wanted to do an English minor with her Math major, but couldn't b/c all of those classes were scheduled at the same time--so she had to choose one or the other!


Monday 20th of April 2015

Hi Kirsten,

Interesting! In high school and in college, actually up to grad school, I could never make my pick. I still can't. Actually, I got two degrees, M.A. and M. Sc (and a Law degree) because I just never could decide.

Now, my eldest is thirteen and introduced to a wider array of subjects. It was a nice surprise, or should I say confirmation, that my son, too, likes both math and physics on one hand and geography and especially history on the other. He just does not want to prefer one over the other.

It is, of course, a chicken and egg sort of thing. I Always resented dividing between liberal arts and science, I really really do not agree with curricula that offer students the possibility to drop all subjects of one in favor of the other. I married a husband who thinks alike, and now my children share this conviction...

Kiki @ Choosing to Cherish

Friday 17th of April 2015

Thank you for sharing about SOTW. I just found out that our library has the CD version so we can borrow it for our road trip. Woohoo!

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