A Much-Needed Break

I’ve spent the morning completing several chapters of our study guide for Oliver Twist. See, when I decided to tackle this novel with the Littles, I searched the handy ol’ interweb for months, looking for a good, affordable (on a very tight budget), in-depth study guide for this all-time classic. I mean, come on, it’s been made into more movies and plays than can be counted, right? So there must be an available study guide that I can tweak for elementary and middle school readers that is decently priced.

You would think.

You would be wrong.

So I thought, “Jeez, KT, you’re a writer. Why are you trying to depend on other people to do for your Littles what you can do yourself?” And the idea to write my own study guides was born. It’s a fun, and often tedious, process.   I have to make sure I’m asking reading comp questions (who, what, where, when, how) as well as throwing in some good critical thinking queries for every chapter. I have to read carefully and… presently… to catch words that need to go on the vocab list. That’s harder than you think, especially when I’m reading one of my fave stories by my all-time fave author. I just want to get lost in it, ya know? Then I have to come up with some fun activities that actually coincide with the chapter to help what they’ve read stick a little better. It takes more than an hour sometimes to get through one chapter.

Which is why I’m grateful we’re on fall break right now. I didn’t come up with the idea to do the study guide myself until about two weeks before school was scheduled to start. I got 18 chapters up and thought, well, I’ll do the rest as we go and finish it up on fall break. Um.

You all know that once school starts, all that spare time you think you’re going to have flies right out the proverbial window. So we’ve read through chapter 20 (I at least got those last two chapters done on time) and today I’ve worked as far as chapter 25. We take two weeks for fall break in order to incorporate Thanksgiving–a benefit of homeschooling year-round—and I have been telling myself since September that I will work diligently on the study guide during this time.

Notice I have not said anything about working on it this week prior to today? That’s because this morning is the first time I’ve been able to slow down enough to sit down and work. It’s been a busy, busy week, and all I can say is I’m grateful I’m not trying to actually teach on top of it.

Now I’m looking at next week and all the prep work for the meal, the excitement of Big and his beautiful girlfriend coming up for the holiday, the hubs taking the week off…

I’d better get back to it. Or Oliver is going to catch up with me and the Littles are going to wonder why I’m so unprepared for reading.

What about you? Is there something you need desperately to complete but find yourself too constantly busy to get to?

Love wins,



2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Traci Matt
    Nov 20, 2014 @ 16:59:20

    Recording grades and transcript paperwork always seemed to be last on the list. 😉



    • KT Brison
      Nov 20, 2014 @ 17:28:22

      Oh yeah, Traci, that is a constant buzzing worry at the back of my mind. I’m just lucky the Littles still have a couple years before high school and my state isn’t too hardcore about those things. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person


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