Monday, August 1, 2011

"Not" Back to School Blog Hop: Curriculum

For 2 years now I've wanted to participate in the Not Back to School Blog hop but for one reason or another haven't been able to.  So finally I'm getting to.  :)

The Art of Loving: they need both milk and honey from their parents. Milk symbolizes the care given to physical needs: brush your teeth, drink your orange juice, eat your vegetables, get enough sleep. Honey symbolizes the sweetness of life, that special quality that makes life sing with enjoyment for all it holds. Fromm says, "Most parents are capable of giving milk, but only a minority of giving honey, too." To give honey, one must love honey and have it to give.
--From "Honey for a Child's Heart" by Gladys Hunt

There is so much more to home schooling than curriculum!  I want to get honey in there too!  My biggest goal this year is to instill in the children a love of learning!!!!  I am excited about all the things we will be doing this year and hopefully my excitement will rub off.  As always I'm learning to be more relaxed and go with the flow.  "10 before 10" is still at the heart of our school year goals.  But here is what our curriculum will look like:

Charley Kate
Blanket training and bins.  A different bin for each school day (Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri).  The activities in these bins will be based upon the Montessori approach and will be focused around these activities:   
  • Transferring
  • Pouring
  • Beading
  • Spooning
  • Pasta Fun
  • Sorting
  • Counting
  • Matching
  • Small Spaces
  • Cutting
  • Gluing
  • Stickers
  • Simple Art/Crafts
  • Fine Motor-Muscle Skills
PreK: Jack
 We'll be using Before Five in a Row, Preschool Packs and Sensory Bins.

Reading {Daily}

1st Grade ~ Pathway Readers Year 1.  As her reading confidence grows we'll start her on some grade level read alouds.  (this curriculum does vocabulary and grammar as well)
4th Grade ~ Living Books.  I'm still working on a list that I'll share on the sidebar.  She will be required to read these aloud.

Writing {Daily}

1st Grade ~ journal entries
4th Grade ~ journal entries and Excellence in Writing.  Super excited about this program.  It looks excellent!

Spelling {Daily}

1st Grade ~ Sequential Spelling was a great way to introduce spelling for Suzannah so I think it will work well for Molly Beth.  
4th Grade ~ The Phonetic Zoo.  I have read wonderful reviews of this program.  While Sequential Spelling has been great to teach certain concepts, I haven't seen enough of an increase in correct spelling to continue w/ it.  This is also a sequential approach, which I think makes the most sense, but I'm hoping it will have better results as far as spelling words correctly rather than just understanding the concepts.  Not sure if I'm making sense?!

Vocabulary { 2 x weekly}

1st Grade ~ she will get this from her Pathway Reader workbooks

4th Grade ~ Wordly Wise 4.  This will be our first time to use this but it looks great and I've heard good things about it.  Suzannah likes words, so I think she'll really enjoy this.

Grammar {2 x weekly}

1st Grade ~ She will get this from her Pathway Reader workbooks

4th Grade ~ First Language Lessons 4.  I had really indended to start grammar at 3rd grade, but she was enjoying the Pathway Readers so much and they have some grammar in there that I decided to wait.  I'm wishing I hadn't and hoping that this won't be too overwhelming for her.  She knows the basics so hopefully it will be enough and she won't be lost in this book!!!

Handwriting {daily}

1st and 4th Grade ~ A Reason for Handwriting has been great.  Both girls enjoyed it and their handwriting improved.  Suzannah's cursive is even better than her print.  Handwriting has never really been her thing, but these lessons were short enough that she didn't get burnt out and enjoyed trying to make it look nice.

Math {daily}

1st Grade   ~ Horizons 1.  B is great at math and I think she's going to have a great hear w/ this workbook.

4th Grade ~ Saxon 4/5.  I went ahead and got Saxon.  I'm nervous.  Suzannah loves math and I don't want that to change.  BUT I want her to be very proficient in math so I'm hoping this is a good fit for her.

Science {once a week}
1st and 4th ~ both girls will be taking science in ELO.  Suzannah will be doing apologia Land Creatures and I'm sure will LOVE it!  It really is silly to say science is only once a week.  Science happens every day in this's just not at a  table.

History {2 x weekly}

1st and 4th Grade ~ Story of the World. this will be the first year that the girls will take a subject together.  I think they will have fun with that!  Should be fun.  :)

Geography {3 x a week}

1st and 4th Grade ~ Daily Geography.  We didn't finish these last year so we will pick up where we left off and go from there.  They are great little lessons that don't belabor the topic for the day.

Bible {daily}

We will be reading Psalms and Proverbs daily, doing hymn study weekly and reading Heros books starting w/ George Muller.  This is just what we'll be doing in a formal way.  Teaching them about God's love will happen hourly.

Art {once a week}

We will do artist studies and make lap books per artist.  We will also be using Artistic Pursuits.  Our book hasn't come in so I'm not sure how frequently we will need to do it, but I'm planning on one afternoon a week.

Music {once a week}

We will do composer studies and make lap books per composer.  Suz did this last year and loved it!  We will aslo be reading the composer books suggested from Beautiful Feet...but renting them from the library.  Also, both girls are doing piano lessons.  Molly Beth is SUPER excited!!!

Greek {once a week}

My dad will continue to teach the girls on Wednesday afternoons after ELO.   We will continue using "Hey Andrew, Teach Me Some Greek"  The girls really enjoy this and have picked up on it very quickly.  I'm thinking about seeing if Jack can sit it.

After rest time, I read aloud for 1 hour.  This is a great time that the kids all look forward too.  This will be the first year for CK to join us, but she should be able to handle it.  There is a list of books we'll be working through this year on the side bar...or at least I'll try to get it up soon.  We also read aloud at night.  In the evenings it's a different set of books.  We have gotten out of our real aloud time habits b/c of Will, but are looking forward to getting back into it as his schedule has become more predictable and he's pretty good about going to bed early.

The only other thing I can think of is Life Skills.  I'm going to make more of a conscious effort to work on some specific life skills once a week.  I was truly inspired by this post and will be picking things from this list:


  • Beading
  • Calligraphy
  • Carving
  • Ceramics
  • Chalk drawing
  • Charcoal sketching
  • Clay sculpturing
  • Crocheting
  • Cross-stitching
  • Embroidery
  • Finger painting
  • Flower arranging
  • Gardening
  • Iron sculpturing
  • Kiting
  • Knitting
  • Latch-hooking
  • Leather tooling
  • Loom weaving
  • Macrame
  • Oil painting
  • Pencil sketching
  • Photography
  • Picture framing
  • Pottery
  • Quilting
  • Robotics
  • Rubber stamping
  • Scrapbooking
  • Scroll sawing
  • Sewing
  • Spinning fibers
  • Spool-knitting
  • Videography
  • Watercolor painting
  • Weaving
  • Weaving pot holders
  • Whittling
  • Woodworking

Life Skills

  • Auto mechanics
  • Baking
  • Canning
  • Changing a car tire
  • Changing a lightbulb
  • Checking the car’s oil
  • Cleaning: mirrors, sinks, toilets, tubs and showers, baseboards
  • Clearing the table
  • Cooking
  • CPR
  • Driving a car
  • Drying: clothes, dishes
  • Dusting
  • Electrical wiring
  • Emptying trash
  • First Aid
  • Folding: clothes, towels, sheets
  • Mopping
  • Mowing the lawn
  • Organizing: closets, cupboards, sheds, attics
  • Painting a room
  • Plumbing
  • Raking leaves
  • Setting the table
  • Sweeping the floor
  • Vacuuming
  • Vegetable gardening
  • Wallpapering
  • Washing: clothes, dishes, windows, car
  • Welding

Life Skills but also Business Skills

  • Computer skills
  • Keyboarding/Typing
  • Tracking personal finances
There are several things Billy will add to the list, but I think this will help me be more deliberate about training the children in more than just what their chores encompass.
Phew, this is long.  I will link all the curriculum and put book lists on my side bar as soon as I can.  Hope everyone is having fun w/ their last days/weeks until school starts :) 


Dawn said...

What wonderful goals. I enjoyed reading your entry.

Thia said...

I enjoyed your post very much!

Lindsay said...

This looks like a wonderful year you have planned! We are using BFIAR this year as well :-)


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