Welcome to Day THREE of the Back to Homeschool Blog Hop. If you missed yesterdays post about our 5th Grade Curriculum choices, you might want to catch up with that first. I get asked quite often what curriculum we use, so I wanted to share with you our Preschool & K-1 grade choices for this year.
A few weeks ago I was able to find this SUPER CUTE First Day of School Chalkboard in the Target Dollar Spot! SCORE! I couldn’t wait to take our pictures this year and write all the kids’ information in them. Here are our K-1 graders & preschooler.
This is the first year all 4 kids will be doing schoolwork, so things might get a little interesting at times. It will also take some time for us to settle in to a routine, so the first few weeks are pretty laid back as we all adjust to the “new norm.” As with our 5th grade curriculum, we have made some changes in our K-1 choices this year as well. Some of you may be wondering why I say K-1, it is because we have a few left over Kindergarten things to finish since the end of last year was so jumbled with all that happened in our family. But with God’s help, we will persevere and push through and catch back up in no time!
Daily Bible Reading – We read the chapter of the day from Proverbs every day together. So today is the 12th, we will read chapter 12 and so on. I like the repetition of reading it each day, every month so the kids learn the verses, virtues and characteristics shown throughout the book.
Write through the Bible Jr. – Again, I love this curriculum from Intoxicated on Life. When they announced the new Junior version last year, I was nearly beside myself with excitement. I couldn’t wait to get started on it with my middles. You can read my full review of the product here. We will be working through Philippians 2 this year. We will also be using the companion Family Bible Study, The Heart of Humility to go through as a family devotional in the evenings.
My Brother’s Keeper – Another wonderful resource from Not Consumed is this FANTASTIC Bible study for siblings. Lately the sibling rivalry and squabbles have been escalating to a whole new level that makes me want to run and scream. Neither of which are healthy or a good option. So we will be starting this study together in the mornings and working hard to overcome these temptations as they arise during the day.
Horizons K2 & Horizons 1 – This is one area we fell behind last year, because at this age they need that one-on-one time to learn the math. And between the loss of our daughter, two surgeries, loss of job and moving – math didn’t always happen. So this year we will finish out our Kindergarten book 2 and do books 1 & 2 for First Grade as well.
As with our 5th grader, this is one subject that is not set in stone since we are using a delight-directed, child-led, unit study approach. However, there is one publisher we love, so those books are on our shelf ready to be used when needed.
Zoology 1: Flying Creatures & Zoology 2: Swimming Creatures – The Young Explorer Series by Apologia is by far our favorite Science curriculum. We do utilize the Notebooking Journals they have and it seems to work well. It will be interesting to see how that goes with our unit study approach this year. Yesterday we had a craft day at the library for Seahorses, so we decided to study all about seahorses during the school day. The kids absolutely loved it!
Mostly we will be using the unit study approach for this subject and covering it when it pertains to our topic. We do have Mystery of History, Vol. 1 (which you can now get on Kindle!!) and might try it after we settle into more of a routine. It takes a lot of prep work and isn’t always easy for the little ones to follow along. However, I do love the flow of it.
Liberty Kids – Last year I obtained the Liberty Kids video series and I can’t wait to get started with them! My plan is to make some coloring sheets for the younger kids as we review what the videos talked about.
Geography in the Kitchen – This is an on-going project I am working on, so there will be more on it in September. But, basically we will be learning about the countries from Globalmania as we cook some of their signature meals in the kitchen. Just another way to help them remember what we are learning about.
Spelling & Handwriting
A Reason for Handwriting A – This Bible based curriculum is one of my all-time favorites. This level has a full-color manuscript workbook recommended for beginners. Starts with lines and shapes, then moves into basic letter formation of both lower-case and upper-case alphabet. I like that it continues to focus on one letter per lesson built around a Creation theme.
Explode the Code A, B & C – I tried this series with Mister Bull, but he was already too advanced that he quickly got bored. However, we are still working on remember all our letter sounds, so I think this series is going to do well with the Middles this year.
Letter Sounds by Rock n’ Learn – This is a just a super fun video that helps kids learn and memorize the sounds of letters, read words, consonant combinations and read even read sentences all through music! Perfect for our music-loving family!
Sight Words Level 1 by Rock n’ Learn – Another video that teaches kids to recognize all the Dolch sight words and the Top 20 of Fry’s first 100 sight words. I think the key for Mister Mouse, who is reluctant to learn just about anything, is to make it fun.
Learn to Read at the Storybook Factory by Leap Frog – This last video is one we will use after they have mastered the Sight Words. I love that it helps teach reading through fun stories as well as songs.
American Sign Language for Kids – I love sign language, but I am not proficient. So the kids and I will be using this fun DVD to help refresh my memory and teach them some sign language as part of their foreign language learning this year.
Art House – This is a DVD I got a couple years back, but is no longer available. I wish it was, because I just love it for the little kids. It teaches them basic shapes and animals through a fun semi-interactive video with Teacher Emily and the Art House Gang.
While most of our preschool time consists of playing and sensory bins to reinforce hand-eye coordination, Punkin will also do a few subjects with the Middles as well.
Letter a Week – This year we are using the Letter a Week approach with Punkin as she begins to recognize her letters. We do not have one set curriculum, but rather pull from several that I have gathered through freebies and purchases over the past few years. Some of my favorites are Letter of the Week by Confessions of a Homeschooler, these AWESOME FREE PRINTABLES with Playdough mats, Wikki Stix mats & more from Intoxicated on Life (my Middles love these too) and Look What I Can Do! Preschool Curriculum from Brookdale House. We will also utilize other various freebies as needed. You can find printables, crafts, activities, books & recipes for each letter of the week in my ongoing series over at Homeschool Giveaways.
Art & Sign Language – These subjects will be done with the Middles using the same curriculum. I will adjust it for her level as needed, but for the most part she tries her best to keep up and does a pretty good job.
As for other subjects, we will take them as she shows interest. If she wants to sit in our Science lessons, she can. If she wants to help in the kitchen as we learn more about Geography and cooking, she can. But those will not be forced.
I want her to love learning, not hate school. So we take a relaxed approach with our little ones until they show the interest to learn and then we run with it.
Another program we just started this year, is ABCMouse.com, and I couldn’t be happier! Mister Mouse has really struggled with the handwritten work and remembering his letter sounds to begin reading, that we thought this was a good investment for our family. It only costs $7.95/month for up to 3 kids, which works perfectly for our family!
What are your favorite curriculum choices for young learners?
This post is part of the Back to Homeschool Blog Hop 2015 with 56 other bloggers. You can check out all of them and what they are sharing by clicking below.