Friday, July 23, 2010

2010-2011 Curriculum

It's that time again!  Lately my mind is swimming with ideas and plans for the up-coming school year.  We are planning on starting August 16th.

I'm excited to post our curriculum choices and link up with Kris at Weird, Unsocialized Homeschoolers!
This post is also linking to:
Not Back to School Blog Hop

Dale, 2nd Grade:
23633: What the Bible Is All About: For Young ExplorersWhat the Bible Is All About: For Young Explorers
This will give us a great overview of the Bible by learning the writer and main events of each book, along with where it fits in to the Bible and how it points to or teaches of the coming Savior.  Not sure yet what kind of hands-on we'll do with this.  Possibly some sort of notebooking, but we'll see.  I'm open to suggestions. ;)

185008: Singapore Math: Primary Math Workbook 2A US EditionSingapore Math: Primary Math Workbook 2A US Edition
This will be Dale's second year in Singapore Math.  We've actually got some finishing up to do in the level one book.  Between having a new baby and slowing down to make sure Dale has the basic math facts committed to memory, and this that and the other... well... we just have some left.  No biggie though.  I love homeschooling!  At any rate, Singapore seems to be a good fit for us so far.

Handwriting has been a stressful place for Dale and I at times in the past.  What is working best for us right now is his new pen pal!  He's only sent one letter so far, but has started a second, and with it plugged in to our daily schedule, I'm hoping we can send out one a week.  That, along with what little handwriting is required to complete his other work, is plenty for my 7 year old.

Phonics / Spelling
892075: The Complete Book of Phonics, Grades K-3The Complete Book of Phonics, Grades K-3
I am mostly a believer in the Charlotte Mason method of phonics and spelling, as in it mostly isn't necessary as its own subject, especially at this age, and especially with Dale already reading so well.  However, I like having this work book for that 'just in case' insurance, so we have been chugging along a few pages at a time off and on for a year or two and will continue to do so.  It's good for busy work, which even homeschoolers sometimes need a little bit of (at least at my house!).

I also have a public school spelling workbook I bought at a garage sale (just tore out the 2-3 pages that had been written in and it was good as new).  We will complete a unit from this book each week.

For second grade we will continue to follow the suggested science course of study outlined in The Well-Trained Mind (The Well-Trained Mind: A Guide to Classical Education at Home, Revised and Updated Third Edition).
This means we'll be starting the year finishing our biggest lapbook to date, a study of the body.  If you are familiar with The Well-Trained Mind you know the body is studied in 1st grade, so yes, this is more leftovers from last year.  Again... no biggie.  I downloaded this lapbook during a sale from Currclick.

After that we'll be moving on to Earth Sciency Type Things like:
Weather / Weather tracking
Dinosaurs, Fossils

Most of my resources will come from our own books, our public library, and Currclick.  We'll probably do a lapbook or two and some notebooking, and hopefully a few hands-on experiments along the way.

Dale has been working his way through the lessons at Dance Mat Typing.  We will continue that, just being more consistent with it.  Probably 3-4 times a week.

The Arts
I am hoping to cover either Art or Music or Poetry each week.  Nothing major, just making the effort to set aside a little time to learn about someone new and their works.  We'll listen to composers, research their biographies, learn about instrument families, look at the works of various artists and their biographies, and read and memorize poems.  And hopefully create art, music, and poems of our own.  A lot of this will involve Alan, as well.

Dale has learned a bit of basic piano with sporadic lessons through a couple of the piano books I used as a beginner, way back when.  I think he is ready now to sit down for regular lessons and practices.  Our curriculum arrived this weekend, and I can't wait to get started!  We will be using:
396380: Music In Me: Lesson Level 1 Music In Me: Lesson Level 1

What's missing?  
339004: Ancient Times, Volume 1, RevisedAncient Times, Volume 1, Revised
We began Story of the World in 1st grade and it wasn't a good fit for us at the time.  So we planned on making it a summer study for the whole family to do together.  Yeah... uh... that didn't happen either.

I'm not giving up yet, though.  I don't have it plugged in for the beginning of our school year, but we'll see what happens once we get rolling.  The potential is there for us to really enjoy it and learn a lot, when the time is right.  Someday.  Maybe soon.  I hope.

Otherwise I'll be all messed up on that 4-year rotation thing. :)

Whew.  Okay.  Still with me?

Alan, 4 year old Preschool
This is the first year I am planning and scheduling regular activities for Alan.  I'm really excited about it!  For our core curriculum I will be using the Bible & Rhyme from Hubbard's Cupboard.  And... brace yourselves... I plan on following it as written.  
That's big news for me.  There's not much I do exactly as suggested when it comes to school and cooking.  
#1 - I used a lot of Bible & Rhyme with Dale when he was this age, and really like it.  

#2 - The idea of somebody else doing the majority of my planning is wonderful.

In addition to Bible & Rhyme we will be doing lots of alphabet activities from Confessions of a Homeschooler.  Have you seen the things Erica has available?  They are amazing!

I still believe preschoolers can and do most of their learning living and playing and being read to.  But I can't see Alan just sitting around watching while Dale is 'doing school' every day.  He'll want in on the action too.  Plus, all that making and doing is FUN!  :)

Of course, we'll be going to the library weekly and reading, reading, reading.  (Both boys)

Have you used any of the above resources?  What are some of your favorites?
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Stefanie said...

Looks like you guys have a great year ahead of you. And thanks for the reminder to be more consistent with the dance mat typing. Lol

Catherine said...

Looks like a great year! We enjoyed Story of the World, although we generally listened on CD (I get tons of migraines). I really liked Singapore Math up until about 6th or 7th grade - excellent stuff. And I just looked at that Bible explorer book on CBD and I think I might consider it for my 12 year old son. His dad is doing Bible with him this year and he wants to do an overview of the whole Bible. I'm wondering about getting Dad a more in-depth book to read and then this book for my son's teaching. (My son has dyslexia and the easy language and pictures will be helpful). Hmmmm. Something to consider. Anyway, have a great schoolyear!!

Milk and Honey Mommy said...


I totally hear you regarding history. I found material for every subject I wanted to do this school year and somehow, history is still empty. I'm determined to do history this year, but may create my own study because I do't really want to do time periods now, but would rather focus on events.

I also enjoy Hubbard's Cupboard and definitely Confessions. I'm putting together bits and pieces from both of those sites and a few other sources for my preschooler.

Lora @ my blessed life said...

I'd love to hear what you think about the Music in Me curriculum. I've been looking at it in a catalog, wishing I could see it in person. Still trying to decide what to do about that with my daughter.

Anonymous said...

We really, really LOVE SOTW! And Dance Mat has worked for us!
Have a great year!

Jenny said...

I'll have to check into Dance Mat Typing, I bet my daughter would like that.

For social studies, my first grader and my second grade nephew LOVE Heritage Studies!

Unknown said...

Happy Homeschooling! Thank you for sharing. I will have a 7th grader/4th grader/Pre-K/Little one in our homeschool. :) Thanks for sharing!

Sheri said...

I used this site to just print off some coloring pages to tie into the Bible lessons/stories-made it into a notebook for the boy as moved along.

There are all sorts of notebooking ideas and usually for free, by Googling it, you should find a few. HTH

and as for the HW, that seems to be a struggle for many boys-so I wouldn't worry too much, as they seem to just need more time to get it. :0)
I use Getty-Dubay's Italic cuz it is so close to print (as cursive) that it is an easy switch over, and my boy is dyslexic-and we're not having a problem with it all.


Trina said...

Enjoy the younger years . . . they are so much FUN. Wishing you a blessed school year . . . thanks for sharing.

Four Little Penguins said...

We love Story of the World! And I have gotten so much use out of Hubbard's Cupboard!!! Have a great year!

Robin E. said...

Thank you for the reminder to check out Letter of the Week. I knew about it, but despite having a K'er just learning phonics and a preschooler, I haven't been there in a long time.

Thank you for sharing on the NOT Back-to-School blog hop. Have a great year !

Jen@Scrapingirl said...

We had great expectations to do it in the summer also, but emergency apendectemy(sp?) made it impossible. Oh well. Drat that 4 year cycle. Gotta keep going. :) Have a great year!

Unknown said...

Looks like a great year! I'm also doing a very informal school year for my four year old. She just loves to do "school" so why not! :)

Nichole said...

I’m thinking about using Singapore Math and the Story of the World next year, when my daughter will be in first grade. I’d be interested to hear how you like Story of the World once you get started on it. I’m going to try to incorporate my almost-3-year-old into our school day this year. We’ll see how that goes!

Ali said...

Your plan looks wonderful! I am really enjoying reading what everyone has planned for the year.


L Harris said...

We are using that LOTW curriculum. The children are 5 and 3. I think it will be great. The older kids are using Tapestry of Grace in addition to some other things.

Catherine said...

Hello from the blog hop. I like the choices you've made. I wish I had started homeschooling when mine were littler! My boys weren't thrilled by history until recently, now it's one of their favorites.

Corrie said...

I love your approach to adapting everything to suit your needs! We have used Story of the World and loved it. My little girl loves to color the pages in the activity book and the ideas for hands on activities there were usually quick and easy to pull together. We're trying My Father's World this year, because I needed help pulling everything together. I'm also visiting from the blog hop. Thanks for sharing your ideas!