• About Farm School

    "There are obviously two educations. One should teach us how to make a living and the other how to live."
    James Adams, from his essay "To 'Be' or to 'Do': A Note on American Education", 1929

    We're a Canadian family of five, farming, home schooling, and building our own house. I'm nowhere near as regular a blogger as I used to be.

    The kids are 18/Grade 12, 16/Grade 11, and 14/Grade 10.

    Contact me at becky(dot)farmschool(at)gmail(dot)com

  • Notable Quotables

    "If you want a golden rule that will fit everybody, this is it: Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."
    William Morris, from his lecture "The Beauty of Life"

    "‘Never look at an ugly thing twice. It is fatally easy to get accustomed to corrupting influences."
    English architect CFA Voysey (1857-1941)

    "The world of books is the most remarkable creation of man. Nothing else that he builds ever lasts. Monuments fall, nations perish, civilizations grow old and die out; and, after an era of darkness, new races build others. But in the world of books are volumes that have seen this happen again and again, and yet live on, still young, still as fresh as the day they were written, still telling men’s hearts of the hearts of men centuries dead."
    Clarence Day

    "Anyone who has a library and a garden wants for nothing."

    "Histories make men wise; poets, witty; the mathematics, subtile; natural philosophy, deep; moral, grave; logic and rhetoric, able to contend."
    Sir Francis Bacon, "Essays"

    "The chief aim of education is to show you, after you make a livelihood, how to enjoy living; and you can live longest and best and most rewardingly by attaining and preserving the happiness of learning."
    Gilbert Highet, "The Immortal Profession: The Joys of Teaching and Learning"

    "Good judgment comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgment."
    Walter Wriston

    "I'd like to give you a piece of my mind."
    "Oh, I couldn't take the last piece."
    Ginger Rogers to Frances Mercer in "Vivacious Lady" (1938)

    "No race can prosper till it learns that there is as much dignity in tilling a field as in writing a poem."
    Booker T. Washington

    "Please accept my resignation. I don’t care to belong to any club that will have me as a member."
    Attributed to Groucho Marx in "The Groucho Letters" by Arthur Sheekman

    "If you can't say something good about someone, sit right here by me."
    Alice Roosevelt Longworth

    "If we bring a little joy into your humdrum lives, we feel all our hard work ain't been in vain for nothin'."
    Jean Hagen as "Lina Lamont" in "Singin' in the Rain" (1952)
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  • Copyright © 2005-2016 Please do not use any of my words or my personal photographs without my express permission.

Lately, at BookCloseouts

I don’t like the new look of BookCloseouts’ website, but they’ve got some wonderful goodies at the moment, worth considering if you are looking for books for your home school studies and/or have any autumn/winter birthdays and holidays to shop for:

Howtoons: The Possibilities Are Endless! by Saul Griffith, Nick Dragotta, and Joost Bonsen; only $6.99, and just try buying it somewhere else.  Very good for birthday presents.

The Pocket Dangerous Book for Boys: Things to Do; small and handy

The Pocket Dangerous Book for Boys: Things to Know; equally small and handy

We the Kids by David Catrow; excellent for American history

The Dragonfly Pool by Eva Ibbotson; a wonderful story full of thrills, spill, chills, folk dancing, the young crown prince of Bergania, and some Nazis.  And only $2.99. More Ibbotson books here, including her equally good Star of Kazan.

To See Every Bird on Earth by Dan Koeppel; a good stocking stuffer for the bird lover in your life, also only $2.99

Tamburlaine’s Elephants by Geraldine McCaughrean; historical fiction; also at BookCloseouts by McCaughrean, her retelling of The Odyssey, a Puffin Classic

Many volumes in the Poetry for Young People series

*  *  *

And not from BookCloseouts, but fresh from The Book Depository and the publisher, on the advice of Elaine’s Random Jottings blog post — My Last Duchess by Daisy Goodwin, for $9 pre-order* rate, hardcover.  Hee…

I’m looking forward to it as a late summer read, having very much enjoyed, a couple of years ago, Frances Hodgson Burnett’s The Shuttle, from Persephone Books, and then Consuelo and Alva Vanderbilt: The Story of a Daughter and a Mother in the Gilded Age by Amanda Mackenzie Stuart.

P.S.  From Daisy Goodwin’s New Statesman interview earlier this year:

Q: Michael Gove thinks schoolchildren should be learning poetry by rote. Are you with him?

A: Learning poetry by heart is like seeing it in 3D. If you do it when you’re a child you never forget it. And kids who aren’t great readers can learn verse perfectly. So I think it’s a fantastic thing to do. It would almost make me vote Tory.

* …much as I hate the term (and am confused by the idea of) “pre-order”, which is up there with “pre-registration” in my curmudgeon’s book.  You are either ordering or registering, or you are not.  If it’s too early for either, it’s too early.  If you mean reserve, say so.  The end.