I enjoyed this year's convention very much. This was the first Homeschool Convention I ever attended without Heather and that was kind of strange, she was missed. Neither Anna nor Jeanelle were able to attend, but my most-wonderful-in-the-world Mother in Law and super-great Sister in Law were attending, and we had that lovely commute in and out to share thoughts, experiences, and general ideas we'd learned. Divide and conquer!
This is the year Andrew Kern from CiRCE finally came to Cincinnati, and it was great to listen to him and to meet him in person and talk to him. I even yelled at him (a little, and not very seriously). I also talked to his son, David, who said he's working on a Forum!
The conference promoters put all the people I most wanted to hear in one room, we joked that we were having a mini-Classical conference in room 260-262. Aside from Andrew Kern, Christopher Perrin (Classical Academic Press), Martin Cothran, and Cheryl Lowe (both from Memoria Press) all spoke there several times throughout the weekend. I hope to do some summarizing of the various talks I heard.
I also enjoyed Sonya Shafer from Simply Charlotte Mason talk about Laying Down the Rails and Habit formation. This was the thing I was ready to start on Monday when we got home from the conference: school isn't done until the school room is cleaned up. We'll work on that for a couple of months and then add another. I'm not reminding the children; they're already reminding me!
Dr. Carol Reynolds session on Using Hymns in the Homeschool was great! Very high energy and enthusiastic. And we sang. It was the most fun session I attended; we sang several hymns, we learned some of the notation on hymns themselves, and we heard some stories. It was the perfect late-Saturday afternoon-my-brain-hurts session to attend.
I had heard Susan Wise Bauer's lectures before, but will always go hear "Homeschooling the Second Time Around" if I can at all manage it. She doesn't record the session (for good reason) and it is an honest, encouraging, helpful, funny, and re-energizing lecture. Thanks, Susan for all you've done and all you've shared.
I did not make it to any of Adam Andrews' sessions, and I wanted to. We could have stayed for the last session and heard him, but I was ready to head home ... and if we skipped it, I would make it home in time to have dinner with my family. I ordered the CD (I think!)
I shopped in the Exhibit Hall on Friday afternoon and found Poetry for the Grammar School from Memoria Press for M-girl. She has adored MCT's Music of the Hemispheres this past year, and I hope that we can build in some more practice before going on to MCT's Building Poems. Memoria Press' curriculum looks like it will be just the right combination of analysis, copywork, and illustrating. She's excited about it already. I bought The Lost Tools of Writing for me. I want to practice so it becomes easier to teach. I bought R-girl some Explode the Code, and she completed Lesson 1 today ... I wonder if she'll go so quickly through the rest (kind of hope not!) I found several Billy and Blaze books for N-boy including one I'd not heard of!
Overall, it was a very very good convention. I hope to share more as I process through my notes.