Happy Friday!! Although my primary focus for this blog is not necessarily homeschooling, it is a huge part of our lives in this season. For that reason, I would like to share on Fridays (or sometime on the weekend) some of our homeschooling adventures from the week. This week we are starting to get back into a routine, specifically our morning routine. This post will cover the curriculum I believe we will be using, although that is always subject to change.
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Our morning routine is fairly simple at this point. This week we have watched the Mr. Phil study on Ephesians. This study is on RightNow Media, which we are able to access through our church - and oh so grateful for it!! I believe a subscription from Jelly Telly Tv would also give you access. We do not have this subscription though, so I am not 100% sure. There is also free content under the blog section of that site.
We went through his study of Philippians last year. They really enjoy actually reading through the Bible, but in away they can understand. They go through the actual scripture, in a cartoon. It's perfect for them to stay engaged and soak it in. Then we usually stop the review questions at the end to let them try to answer on their own. Sometimes my oldest will read from her Bible the scripture for the day too, for extra reading practice.
They also enjoy watching CNN 10 in the mornings. I am always careful to pay attention to the content and monitor as needed if I feel it isn’t age appropriate for my kiddos. It is literally the news in ten minutes. It shows them on a globe where the story they are reporting is located. It has a CNN Hero portion that is sometimes very relatable to children. Their favorite is the ten second trivia question. We always pause it, discuss the question and everyone picks their answer before we push play. The questions are typically above my kiddos understanding but, depending on the question, we will sometimes go find the answer on a map or one of our books. This can lead to a 15 minute discussion at times.
I am contemplating adding a "morning basket" idea or doing something later in the day such as the "tea time" idea. This would include a variety of the books listed below.
reading, SPelling and the alPhabet
I have to first state, I have not used All About Reading or All About Spelling as of yet. I have researched and researched and researched some more. Based on how I believe my kiddos learn and what I need to teach, this is the program I believe we should try.
I purchased Level 1 and 2 used and someone generously gave me the pre-reading program. I was so very thankful!! I will start my soon to be four year old on the pre-reading program to teach her letters. My oldest is a right brain/visual learner. Although some things she needs the kinesthetic activities for it to stick. My younger two are so active and busy, with short attention spans, this program seems to have what I needed. My plan is to put all of the activities in sheet protectors in a binder.
For spelling, I have read to start AAS level 1 when they are on AAR level 2. That’s where I will start my 2nd grader. This will be her first year using AAR for reading. We used Dianne Craft’s right brain book last year. We will continue through that book as a short supplement. It’s essentially word lists using a right brain format.
We will also continue to use the snap words right brain flash cards from Child1st Publications. (affiliate link) I love their colorful pictures! They also just came out with math vocabulary word flash cards, which I won in a giveaway! They are going to be super fun and I believe they will really give the kids a great idea of various math concepts. I am grateful these cards came with an instructors guide on order to teach the words, in addition to ideas of activities to do with the kids too.
Math is a little tricky for us. My daughter loves cooking and sewing and a lot of things that involve math, but math itself is not her favorite. We finished Math Lessons for a Living Education Level 1 from Masterbooks last year. She LOVED the stories at the beginning of each lesson/week. It talked about twins living with their grandparents on a farm for the summer and learning about math.
She did not enjoy making her own right brain flash cards for math facts (as the book instructed), nor any other attempts to make math facts fun and to help them stick. She simply does not enjoy math in general. I also believed she needed more of......something. I just was not sure what it was.
After much research over math curriculum, I arrived at Singapore Math. We worked through some of 1B this summer and she seemed to grasp the concepts much better. We both really liked the idea of the number bonds for math facts.
My girl that loves stories asked several times over the summer if we were going to go back to the “math with stories”. I have decided to incorporate Math Lessons for a Living Education Level 2 stories and concepts as a supplement to Singapore 2A Math. This may not work, but we need to at least try to make math enjoyable while ensuring the concepts are sticking.
For My kindergartner, I will be starting Math Lessons for a Living Education Level 1 since it starts off fairly easy. He loves math and seems to catch on quickly so I’ll take his lead and see how we do and how far we get in that book. I believe it’s written for first grade level, but again, we will see how it goes.
Language Arts & Handwriting
This is a topic that we attempted to cover last year as a first grader. We completed part of the Masterbooks first grade book. But at the time, we were still getting our reading down and took precedence over any other reading/language arts program. Also, I feel like I would point out LA concepts anyway while reading. We discussed concepts throughout the day as they came up, when to capitalize words and where should the comma go?
This year, I am excited about what we are doing! And I believe she will be too!! Again, I love the Charlotte Mason style and stories of Masterbooks. They have Language Lessons for a Living Education Level 2 that we will be going through as our main book. It includes oral narration, picture studies, psalms, poems, scripture memorization and more.
The younger two are just as excited about school school so I can easily include them in the stories and scripture memory work. They will be included without doing the written work, that is much over their level anyway.
Easy Grammar Level 2 (affiliate link*) will be used as a supplement and came recommended by a trusted homeschool mom/friend. It is simple and easy to work through. My very independent daughter loves the idea of having work she can do “on her own” and I believe this will be perfect for her. Plus give her extra practice. She loves to write and she wants to do it correctly, so this should be a great way to accomplish that task.
I have to show these language books (affiliate link*) I bought from another mom who is almost done homeschooling her kiddos. She spoke highly of them and they look so fun. Colorful and bright, exactly what my visual learner loves!
I have read many good reviews and also had personal recommendations for Handwriting Without Tears. I really like the layout and again, it has a nice flow. The order in which the letters are taught is intuitive and logical. We will work through the kindergarten book, "Letters and Numbers for Me" (affiliate link*) and see when we get done. I want to do some more print work with my oldest to really solidify the correct formation of letters and numbers, "Printing Power" (affiliate link*). Then we will move on to learning cursive, which she has been begging me to do since kindergarten. This Kick Start Cursive came with Printing Power on Amazon.
Science is a subject that the older two absolutely love!! For that reason, I have invested more in science book curriculum sooner than later. Last year Masterbooks Life for Beginners book was perfect for lining up with Classical Conversations science topics for cycle 1. This year CC is covering biomes, ecosystems, astronomy and physics topics. Since I feel like it is still early for super structured science, I wanted to try a few books out first.
On the picture below, the bottom book is God's Design for Chemistry & Ecology: Properties of Ecosystems. A friend loaned this to me and it covers the first semester items of CC very well. We will mostly read through it and there are activities scattered along the way that we will do as it peaks their interest. God's Design is its own series. What I have discovered is that Masterbooks has combined the various series into workbooks and appears to be the same content, just in a different format. I chose to stick with the original book since the Masterbooks version is for 3rd-6th grade. I felt it would be too much for her at this point.
Apologia is another company that I have heard really great reviews about. The same friend loaned me their Exploring Creation with Chemistry & Physics book. I ordered the astronomy book and the junior notebooking journals to go along with both of those books. The notebooking journals include various activities and places for them to write down their observations and thoughts. That is exactly what my oldest is most excited about for school. We will not go exactly with CC each week. At this point, we will start science before CC begins and work our way through chapters that include CC material.
History & Geography
For history, we have Story of the World audiobook and the activity book as well (affiliate links*). I believe this will be a fun activity, especially for the kindergartner. SOTW also goes along with CC. We may not read through the exact reference to CC each week, but they enjoy listening while building or playing with play-doh. The activity book will just be a nice filler and change of pace.
I also have several books on Medieval times, various timeline topics, World War II and other cycle 2 topics. The DK and Usborne books have really great reference books too that we enjoy. Big Book of History is another fun reference book we pull out. This link is on amazon, but it is also found on the Masterbooks site too.
We really enjoy geography at our house. We have a world map on the wall in the dining room. It is often used while watching CNN 10 or any time another country is mentioned anywhere. I have several globe/map books for them to have access to at any time.
I also purchased a geography book that goes along exactly with CC memory work. It is called "Where In The World" from Classical Exploration's Etsy shop. I purchased her book last year for cycle 1 and it was nothing short of amazing! The maps were clearly marked and easy for my daughter to see everything. The information was informative and interesting. We did not go through it every single week, but we used it enough I bought another one for cycle 2. I see us using it more on a weekly basis this year with my oldest reading more independently than last year.
I have tried to link to where these items can be purchased, although some can be found on Amazon and also Christianbook.com in addition to their main company site.
Masterbooks is a company I continue to go back to and really enjoy their books. If you get to Masterbooks using my link, it is a referral link. If you make any purchases, it gives me rewards on my Masterbooks account toward more materials. Once you place an order, you will have your own referral link to send to your friends!
*As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases for various links used above. There is no extra charge to you, using the link to make a purchase provides a commission to me, which is greatly appreciated. The Child1st Publications is also an affiliate link. Please know I only promote products or companies that I believe in and trust and/or use.
I have chosen not to discuss specifics of Classical Conversations in this post. I am still gathering materials for the weekly memory work. I will make a post for that as soon as it is ready.
Thanks for following along! Feel free to ask any questions and I am always open to suggestions. Maybe next week's will actually go out on Friday. :)
Please check back often as I am adding or modifying pages as time permits.
Scripture/Quote of the Week:
For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.
2 Timothy 1:7
Who Am I?
Hi! I am Pam. I am so glad you stopped by to take a look at my blog. I am a Christian, wife, stay at home PCOS mom and homeschool mom to three amazing kiddos. I'm all about all natural living and real whole food - in real life.
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