“Loudly sing, cuckoo!” (Our ancient homeschool poem-of-the-week, anonymously, for the beginning of our summer term.)
📖 Homeschool Language & Literature: Easy Lessons for the Whole Year
Thou hast taught me, Silent River!
Many a lesson, deep and long;
Thou hast been a generous giver;
I can give thee but a song.
Great homeschool teaching tips and easy little lessons on language, literature, and poetry from the River Houses Homeschool Network. Add your name to our free River Houses mailing list to get posts like these delivered right to your mailbox every week, and print your own homeschool poetry calendar for the whole year on our main River Houses calendar page. 😊
❡ Here, said the year: This collection of Language & Literature posts also includes our regular series of Homeschool Poems-of-the-Week. 🖋
🗓 ✒️ WONDERFUL WORDS: Happy Birthday to Walt Whitman
“Strong, ample, fair, enduring, capable, rich, / Perennial with the Earth, with Freedom, Law and Love, / A grand, sane, towering, seated Mother, / Chair’d in the adamant of Time.” (Happy birthday to the great American poet Walt Whitman, born on this day in 1819.)
🇺🇸 🖋 “AFTER A HUNDRED YEARS / Nobody knows the Place”
“Weeds triumphant ranged / Strangers strolled and spelled / At the lone Orthography / Of the Elder Dead.” (An extra homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Emily Dickinson, for Memorial Day.)
🇺🇸 🕊 HOMESCHOOL HISTORY: Memorial Day
“Rest, comrades, rest and sleep! / The thoughts of men shall be / As sentinels to keep / Your rest from danger free.” (Little homeschool lessons in literature, history, geography, and music, for the Memorial Day weekend.)
🎓 🎉 HOMESCHOOL MUSIC: Let Us Rejoice!
Invite your homeschoolers to learn a few lines this week from the most famous of all medieval student songs – it’s an inheritance they can carry with them around the world.
🎂 HOMESCHOOL HOLIDAYS: Happy Birthday, Ralph! (Emerson, that is)
Invite your homeschool students to discover the work of the great American essayist, poet, and philosopher Ralph Waldo Emerson, born this day in 1803.
🖋 🎓 GRADUATION SEASON: “Set me free to find my calling”
“Bind me not to the pasture, chain me not to the plow, / Set me free to find my calling and I’ll return to you somehow.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Marta Keen, for graduation season and the coming summer.)
🖋 🌟 WONDERFUL WORDS: Hymn to the North Star
“A beauteous type of that unchanging good, / That bright eternal beacon, by whose ray / The voyager of time should shape his heedful way.” (An extra astronomical homeschool poem-of-the-week, from William Cullen Bryant, for Polaris, our Great Star for the month of May.)
🖋 🍃 WONDERFUL WORDS: Robert Frost’s “Birches”
“One could do worse than be a swinger of birches.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Robert Frost, for childhood play and growing up.)
🖋 WONDERFUL WORDS: Anne Bradstreet for Mother’s Day
“Great was my pain when I you bred, / Great was my care when I you fed. / Long did I keep you soft and warm / And with my wings kept off all harm.” (Our “ornithological” homeschool poem-of-the-week, from the early American poet Anne Bradstreet, for Mother’s Day, the second Sunday in May.)
📚 🌼 WONDERFUL WORDS: May and the Poets
“Come, ye rains, then if ye will, / May’s at home, and with me still; / But come rather, thou, good weather, / And find us in the fields together.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Leigh Hunt, for the merry month of May.)
🎂 🎭 HAPPY BIRTHDAY, WILL! (Shakespeare, That Is)
Happy birthday to the Bard! Celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday this week with some free teaching materials from Shakespeare’s birthplace itself.
🖋 🌸 WONDERFUL WORDS: Loveliest of Trees
“And since to look at things in bloom / Fifty springs are little room, / About the woodlands I will go / To see the cherry hung with snow.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from A.E. Housman, for the loveliest of trees.)
🇺🇸 🏇 WONDERFUL WORDS: “The fate of a nation was riding that night”
“A shape in the moonlight, a bulk in the dark, / And beneath, from the pebbles, in passing, a spark / Struck out by a steed flying fearless and fleet: / That was all! And yet, through the gloom and the light, / The fate of a nation was riding that night.” (A bonus homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Longfellow, for the beginning of the American Revolution in 1775.)
🖋 🇺🇸 WONDERFUL WORDS: “Here once the embattled farmers stood”
“By the rude bridge that arched the flood, / Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled, / Here once the embattled farmers stood / And fired the shot heard round the world.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Ralph Waldo Emerson, for the beginning of the American Revolution in 1775.)
🖋 🕊 WONDERFUL WORDS: George Herbert’s “Easter Wings”
“O let me rise / As larks, harmoniously, / And sing this day thy victories: / Then shall the fall further the flight in me.” (A bonus homeschool poem-of-the-week, from George Herbert, for Easter.)
🖋 ☀️ WONDERFUL WORDS: Calmly We Walk Through This April’s Day
“May memory restore again and again / The smallest color of the smallest day: / Time is the school in which we learn, / Time is the fire in which we burn.” (Our Heraclitean homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Delmore Schwartz, for April days.)
🖖 HOMESCHOOL HOLIDAYS: Happy First Contact Day!
“Sure on this shining night / I weep for wonder wand’ring far alone / Of shadows on the stars.” (On this day in the year 2063, in a remote area near Bozeman, Montana, a Vulcan survey ship will make first contact with the human race. Perhaps some of today’s homeschoolers will be there to see it.)
🖋 ☔️ WONDERFUL WORDS: “Whan that Aprill…”
“And smale foweles maken melodye, / That slepen al the nyght with open ye / (So priketh hem Nature in hir corages).” (Our ancient homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Geoffrey Chaucer, for April showers.)
🖋 🌱 WONDERFUL WORDS: Nothing Gold Can Stay
“Nature’s first green is gold, / Her hardest hue to hold.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Robert Frost, for his birthday and for the first signs of spring.)
🎭 HOMESCHOOL HISTORY & LITERATURE: “Lend Me Your Ears!”
Why not wrap up this special Julius Caesar Week in your homeschool by viewing and discussing several versions of a famous Shakespearean speech with your students.
🖋 🗡 WONDERFUL WORDS: The Ides of March
“And if you can’t curb your ambitions, / at least pursue them hesitantly, cautiously. / And the higher you go, / the more searching and careful you need to be.” (Our admonitory homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Constantine Cavafy, for the Ides of March. Beware!)
🗡 HOMESCHOOL HISTORY & LITERATURE: ”Beware the Ides of March“
Let Shakespeare help you and your students remember one of the most famous dates in ancient history: the Ides of March in 44 B.C.
🖋 🔭 WONDERFUL WORDS: When I Heard the Learn’d Astronomer
“Till rising and gliding out I wander’d off by myself, / In the mystical moist night-air, and from time to time, / Look’d up in perfect silence at the stars.” (Our homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Walt Whitman, contrariwise, for John Herschel and Albert Einstein.)
🖋 🌨 WONDERFUL WORDS: An Unexpected “Snow-Storm”
“All friends shut out, the housemates sit / Around the radiant fireplace, enclosed / In a tumultuous privacy of storm.” (A bonus homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Ralph Waldo Emerson, for unexpected blizzards.)
🖋 🏔 WONDERFUL WORDS: Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird
“The river is moving. / The blackbird must be flying.” (Our playful homeschool poem-of-the-week, from Wallace Stevens, for the earliest migrants of spring.)
🎉 📖 WONDERFUL WORDS: Happy Dord Day!
“Lexicógrapher. n.s. [λεξικὸν and γράφω; lexicographe, French.] A writer of dictionaries; a harmless drudge, that busies himself in tracing the original, and detailing the signification of words.” (A humorous homeschool holiday, for all lovers of words and dictionaries.)