First day of co-op today. I taught my two classes (Apologetics and Essay Writing) and subbed for the art teacher in the little kids' class.
Apologetics was rather bizarre because it is basically a lecture class. I am not used to lecture classes. I am used to hands-on doing stuff. But since they don't know about apologetics, there's not a lot of that.
Essay writing was an intro to writing a thesis. We had two essays which I read, one on writing theses and one which we were to read to determine the thesis.
The essay to read and determine the thesis was on a father's suicide. (Which I did not remember.) It caught the students' attention at the beginning with its discussion of blood and how you pick chunks of old blood off the floor, not mop the blood up. But as they understood what the essay was about, they became more embarassed by the topic and started some light giggling. I wasn't sure how kids in the class might have been affected by suicide, so I told them that two of my uncles committed suicide. (Both my mother's brothers.)
The students listened well. When I had read a few pages, skipping particularly gruesome sections, I asked them what the thesis of the essay was. Someone suggested that we should not blame survivors. Another that we should have compassion for survivors. Another that suicide is messy. All those were true, but they were supporting details. So we discussed the difference between supporting details and the main thesis. In this case the main thesis was, suicide impacts the survivors in a negative way which they never get over.
Afterwards, I waited till school emptied and went to talk to the administrators about my topic for the discussion. I figured some of the homeschooling parents would be calling frantic that we had discussed something like that in class. The administrators were very supportive.
Next week our discussions are “How do you know there is a God?” and Planning and Brainstorming.