Our curriculum

This is going to be a cumulative post for every year we home school.

We've been homeschooling since Monkey was a tot, starting with sign language and "everyday learning". Our first year of homeshooling was when he was 2 years old, I used the Letter of the Week curriculum until he lost interest. After he lost interest, I used various resources including Hubbard Cupboard, Confessions of a Homeschooler preschool, various resources for tot books. When he was 3, I used Montessori resources including Montessori at Home, and 1+1+1=1. Monkey turned 4 and kept wanting more, I got tired of the hours I spent planning and preparing for each week, so I started buying curriculum, it isn't necessary, but for me to have extra time, it is SO worth it!

Scroll down until you view the year you want to see.


2012-2013 School year

Monkey's school

Main curriculum
For our main curriculum, we are using Weaver Interlock, a Christian unit study that uses the bible lesson as the basis for all of the subjects. The Interlock program takes your children through the days of creation and the flood. Each day of creation and the flood has its own unit and includes bible, science, social studies, language arts, art, basic math, physical education, music and health. I bought it second hand for $35.

Bible

We use Grapevine Studies' Stick-figuring Through the Bible level 1-2 for bible study to correlate with our Weaver curriculum. Monkey really gets a lot from these lessons, and enjoys drawing his own version of what we have learned for the day. We used to do this on a daily basis before I purchased our main curriculum, but now it's once or twice a week. I purchased it on sale for $20 for a black and white paperback.

 
Our church is currently using the Jesus Storybook bible curriculum in Azzy's class. We've been reading this bible to him since he was around a year old and really enjoy how it relates every part of the bible right back to Jesus. We alternate between this and Stick Figuring for his current Sunday lesson.

For our verse memorization, we've used Raising Rock Stars, In My Heart, and Cubbies.



 Math

It took me a long time and a lot of research to find a math program that would work for Monkey and the way his brain works. He can count, but if you show him a group, he won't individually count the pieces, he instead glances and tells you the quantity. I honestly thought he has something wrong with him, and then I found this program that actually teaches quantity like how Monkey already does it. It's a Montessori based program that is deeply influenced by the way they teach math in Japan. Being Montessori, it's very hands on, which is right up Monkey's alley. I paid $30 for a used edition.

Literature

For literature, we use Five in a Row. We have Before Five in a Row, Five in a Row volume 1, and working on getting Five in a Row volume 2. The curricula take a book and create a unit study around it, the BFIAR covers many, but not all subjects, FIAR covers all subjects (with the exception of the bible). Before Five in a Row is a gentle introduction to homeschooling, and some people use this only with nothing else. The rest of the FIAR books have more beef to them, but you don't have to do it all, just choose the activities that suit you and your family. BFIAR includes bible lessons, but with the rest of the FIAR series, you have to purchase the bible supplement. I initially was put off by FIAR because you read the same book every day, but every day you do different activities in different subjects correlating to the book, so it keeps it new everyday and makes the books really come alive. I purchased BFIAR used for $12, FIAR volume 1 for $8, and am still looking for FIAR volume 2.

Phonics 

We will be using Happy Phonics for our phonics lessons along with Hooked on Phonics books, Bob Books, and Miss Rhonda's Readers. I'm purchasing Happy Phonics at the end of August used for $30, I got the HOP books as part of the HOP kit used for $8, the Bob Books were a gift, and I won Miss Rhonda's Readers in a giveaway.

Handwriting

We use Handwriting Without Tears for handwriting lessons and absolutely LOVE it! It really makes handwriting fun. I purchased the teacher manual and student book used for $8, slate for $2, chalk for $0.80, made our letter builders out of a painted priority mail box. I'm purchasing the music CD for $9 at the end of August.

I also use fun writing activities like tracing over letters and words written on a chalkboard with water and a paint brush, writing in sand, and writing with a pencil in a flat piece of play dough. 

Nature

We use a variety of things for our nature studies. I use some ideas from pinterest, rent books from the library, and have a Shining Dawn ebook I bought on sale for $6 that I really enjoy.

Science
For science, we use a LOT of library books and pinterest. We enjoy Usborne books, Read-and-find-out books, and The Cat in the Hat science books.

Music

For music, the boys attend a Kindermusik class. Right now, Monkey goes to Imagine That, which is for his age range. They learn basic music theory, are taught about different types of instruments, and use their imaginations and music to "go" to different places and play games. There is a lot of movement involved too, it's a fantastic program. Froggy currently goes to his own class once a week now and is really benefiting from it. Each class comes with it's own set of themed materials, you usually get two books, two music CDs, an activity book, two instruments, and an interactive play set. During the course of the quarter you will do activities in the activity book at home each week and bring things you make to class.


Froggy's tot school

To call what I do with Froggy "school" is a stretch, but he was wanting to do everything that brother was doing, so I came up with fun activities for him to do for his own "tot school". Here are some of the things I am doing.


Curriculum


A LOT has changed since starting tot school with Froggy. I've tried many things to keep his attention (he simply won't be persuaded with a piece of paper and crayons, he has to have his own "work" like Monkey), tot trays have so far been the only thing he has consistently liked. I've tried multiple free curriculums out there and have finally found a mixture of things that keep him occupied while I'm doing school work with Monkey.

Froggy joins us for many things, I give him the freedom to be in the classroom when we are and he often will quietly [read this as somewhat less rambuctiously] do his tot trays, listen in on our lessons, and participate [read that as energetically engage himself] in our calendar time.

When it's time to do a lesson with Monkey, I give Froggy his own sit down work to keep him occupied. I get printables from the Zoomin Movin Alphabet and 1+1+1=1 Tot School printables.
I'm currently only using the printables that he enjoys, so it's a lot of do a dot, stamping, cutting, coloring, and pasting.
This fall, we'll be finished using both of the aforementioned materials and will begin using God's Little Explorers. It looks like a lot of fun, and although it's too young for Monkey, I'm going to include him in on a lot of it and have some older material I'm currently preparing for him to use alongside Froggy.


Tot trays
I set out different tot trays for Froggy on a weekly basis along with his puzzle basket, these are different educational activities for Froggy to do while me and Monkey are having one on one school time. I have two bookcases that I use to display his activities on and rotate learning toys on his shelves as well.


2013-2014

There's a post here for the "Not" Back to School series where I have pictures and more information.

Monkey's school

Main Curriculum

Continuing with The Weaver, using Volume 1 which takes you through Genesis 11-47. I bought it used for $45.

Bible

Still using the Jesus Storybook Bible and Stick Figuring, adding in God's Mighty Warrior Devotional Bible. We started using Leading Little One's to God at the end of last year and are continuing with that this school year as well.

Literature

Continuing with Five in a Row, still using a mixture of Before Five in a Row and Volume 1.

Reading

Using Happy Phonics games, All About Reading level 1, You Can Read!, easy readers from 1+1+1=1, Bob books, Miss Rhonda's Readers, and whatever else interests him. 

Handwriting

Continuing to use  Handwriting Without Tears, going to incorporate more copywork, a daily journal, and a bible verse notebook.

Math

Using a combination of the rest of Rightstart Math level A and Math U See Alpha. Monkey started to not like Rightstart, so we backed off and picked it back up over the summer before this school year to finish it. Also took the summer to go through Math U See Primer for telling time and skip counting. So far, Monkey is really enjoying Math U See. 

  Nature

Continuing with the nature journal we started and lots of outdoor time in our yard and field trips!

Science
  
After reviewing lots of different experiment books, I'm convinced I don't need to get out and have just pinned a bunch of experiments from the internet. I'll pick and choose from that board when I'm planning our units. 

Music

Monkey's kindermusik teacher isn't teaching anymore so we're just going to be going back through all of the classes with the parent guides and revisiting our favorite songs and games. This year we'll be learning about classical music composers, still not certain of what resource I'll be using.


Froggy's tot school

   

To call what I do with Froggy "school" is a stretch, but he was wanting to do everything that brother was doing, so I came up with fun activities for him to do for his own "tot school". Here are some of the things I am doing.


Curriculum



For alphabet review, I'm using the Zoomin Movin Alphabet and 1+1+1=1 Tot School printables.

I'm going to use God's Little Explorers, it looks like a lot of fun, and although it's too young for Monkey, I'm going to include him in on a lot of it and have some older material I'm currently preparing for him to use alongside Froggy.


Tot trays
I rotate out different tot trays for Froggy based on his interest.

Literature

This school year, Froggy will be joining in with our Five in a Row, he's starting to really enjoy being read to so I think it's the perfect time for him to join in.

 

Comments

  1. Hi from the Blog Hop! We also have loved Handwriting without Tears! I have a prek and kinder this year. Looking forward to following along with you this year to see what you're up to!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! We're having fun with everything so far.

      Delete
  2. I love Happy Phonics and Bob Books for reading supplements. We add them to our Explode the Code Books. I have used them all from the beginning of our schooling (5 years now) with great success.

    Hope you have a great year!

    Blessings!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Monkey is really getting into the Happy Phonics more than anything else we've tried, I'm so glad that I found it!

      Delete
  3. I love unit studies!! I've used Konos for many years and now that I have a kindergartener (again), I am going to pick it back up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've been wanting to try KONOS, it looks like something we would enjoy.

      Delete

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