First Week of Homeschool – Our Curriculum

Well, this is it, the first full official week of homeschool for C is over.  The end of each week, I plan on doing a little update to discuss our struggles, highlights, and things that we are doing in our little homeschool.

First things first…. As many know, I am a reluctant homeschooling mom. I wrote about this in a previous post . C missed the school cutoff for Kindergarten by 25 days. Ehhhhhh. And, there is no testing out of that at all. I’m more than positive that she would have tested in if given the chance, as she has done pre-school and pre-k. Therefore, it’s a little sad that she missed this cutoff. This week was a little sad for me as I saw all the pics of the kids in her class going to school, and sitting at their little desks, and just doing what they were prepared to do. If given the option to redshirt C on my own, I would not have done it. However, here we are in a situation where we did, and she’ll be nearly 6 going into K, and probably doing first or second grade curriculum. BUT, I do think that this is a blessing in disguise, and the good Lord above knows far more than I do. Perhaps this is just the thing both of us need for this final year in Germany.

So, now that I got that out, I’m not going to mention it again. Moving forward. I’m excited for the extreme benefits of being a dedicated homeschooling mom.

Last week was our first week of being on a schedule with homeschool. I finally had a chance to wrap my head around what we should be doing, and where to start.

I did not purchase a curriculum. I am working on my own curriculum this year, and I feel this is something that I can completely handle. Is it a bit of a PITA. Yes, it is. It seems like it would be easier to just purchase this out of the box, but I really want to customize the year. As a side note, even though J is in first grade in DoDDS, I will be doing a lot of extra work with him at home, and he will fall under this curriculum, somewhat.

This year we are focusing on the following:

Writing

Reading

Math

Science

Social Studies/Citizenship

Computer Literacy

Foreign Language

Physical Education

Right now, I am using a variety of workbooks to meet these goals. I already had some, and I added some more.

The main books we are using are these comprehensive books (click on pics to go to web sites):

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Then, I am using a variety of supplemental books to hone in on specific things that I want to discover this year:

Problem Solving:

Reinforce critical thinking skills in language arts, reading, math, science, fine arts, and social studies. Team time™ activities encourage multisensory development of skills.

Problem Solving2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Math:

Designed to teach children proper number formation with engaging stories and early math skills. Uses multisensory “everyday type” math techniques and fun story cues. The unique paper avoids number reversals.

Math

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Science:

I plan on teaching the kids science through reading, and also hands on experiments. Over the summer, we focused on a few plants, and observing what happens when you plant a seed, etc. We also read about health, anatomy, and the human body. These are some themes we will continue with during the year. C became very interested in bees over the summer since we had so many bees in the lavender plants outside. Therefore, we talked a lot about the life cycle of bees.

 

Reading:

Twenty minutes a day is all you need, and within 100 teaching days your child will be reading on a solid second-grade reading level. It’s a sensible, easy-to-follow, and enjoyable way to help your child gain the essential skills of reading. Everything you need is here — no paste, no scissors, no flash cards, no complicated directions — just you and your child learning together. One hundred lessons, fully illustrated and color-coded for clarity, give your child the basic and more advanced skills needed to become a good reader. – Amazon

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Computer Science:

This is HUGE for me, and something I will be working on with both C and J consistently through the year as I feel this won’t really be covered for J this year in First grade (if at all, really), and C will just learn along. In the UK, they are going to start teaching programming at Age 5. I know the kids are ready.

We are working on beginning typing. We will learn the basics of coding. By the end of the year, I want J to have a kid blog that he maintains. That’s the goal that he needs to meet by May. I want him to type in it… add pictures… all that.

Also, the kids will be able to use the computer an hour a day to go on KidZui and surf or to Starfall to reinforce learning.

Foreign Language Fridays:

Our library has weekly story time sessions. They alternate German and Spanish each week. Therefore, we will do these every Friday. This will also be the day we check out book at the library to read over the weekend, and the next week. This will also be the day, we focus on Spanish vocab, etc.

Odds and Ends….

Pinterest:

Yep, it’s a huge resource for me and has really helped me over the summer come up with ideas, find curriculum ideas, free printable pages to help with writing, everyTHING! Here’s my homeschool pinterest board. Here’s my Edumacate These Kids Board. It’s the first board I had on Pinterest that deals with everything related to educating my kids. I love the word edumacate, because it helps me remember that even the best education is nothing without a bit of common sense. Also, TeachersPayTeachers is a great site to get free resources and pay for some other really great items. It’s created by Teachers! Love it.

Field Trips:

Once a week, C and I will take some field trip (most likely every Monday or Wednesday) where we go out and gain real life experience, skills, etc.

Socialization!

Ack, this is the one thing that makes me nervous about homeschooling. Will C receive enough interaction with her peers! I am hopeful that her gymnastics classes and play dates I set up will be enough. I think it will work out well.

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Art and Photography:

This year, the kids will get their own cameras (shhhhhh, don’t tell), and start learning how to take their own pictures, edit them, upload them, etc. I’m going to get a 2 fer with this, and teach them how to do their OWN scrapbooks. Yes, that’s a goal. Outsource this bear of creating family memories to these kids! Yessssssss. But, they get to take pics, do some art with it, etc. By next June, I want them to each have a completed scrapbook that they did of their year.

So, it will be a fun, full year! I am focused on the positive, and the benefits of homeschool! I find that as an educator, it was an easy transition for me, and I’m stoked to see how the year goes!

Xo, thanks for reading!

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