Monthly Archives: August 2013

Beginning Our Home School Journey

A few people have asked to let them know how we like our curriculum. And just so family and friends can see, I’ve decided to periodically  post about our home school journey!

Let me first say that I know I just started. I have been extremely enthusiastic and passionate about our choice to home school. I have planned, browsed the web, and picked the brains of moms who are doing it, specifically those who are doing a good job and don’t seem mega-stressed about it all the time! I had our curriculum bought by March, planned out and filed by April. I got ready early! And I know it’s just my first year. I know it won’t always be so fun.

But for now, pardon my enthusiasm over our school experience. It is fun! And we are loving it!

I chose to use My Father’s World. It is a Bible-based, hands-on approach to learning. Kindergarten begins with Creation, then everything continues from there. It combines Science and Bible, as they learn to read. For instance, “S” is the first letter we will focus on. “S” stands for “Sun” and the child will learn, “Jesus is the light of the world.” So, you teach them that Jesus is the Light, while teaching them the sound for “s”. All the letters stand for an element of nature. It is my Father’s world! And that is the basis of every lesson.

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We just finished our first two weeks. Every day we read the Creation account straight from the Bible, then the boys colored a number that corresponded with the day of Creation we were on. It made a chart that we had on the wall.

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After that, we started learning ABCs for a few minutes. At this point, it just helps the student get familiar with all the letters. We sang the ABC song while pointing to leach letter, and went over flashcards, adding a few letters each day. (Pictured below: Top row – 100s chart, and August calendar. Bottom row – basket 1: ABC cards, basket 2: straws for counting to 100, basket 3: empty so far, ABC chart)

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After the ABC part was finished for the day, the boys made a page (for a Creation book) that also went with the day we were on. It was so cute! When we got to Day 3 (land and plants), Timothy just scribbled a few plants on his page and was finished. But Jackson went through a very tedious process of deciding what kinds of fruit he wanted on his page. After a few tries, he finally decided he wanted me to make him some pineapples for his page, because that’s his favorite fruit. His book has much more “love” in it!

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We finished the Creation unit by going to the park. We made a chart showing things that God made, and things that man made. It was fun! I love the “hands-on” approach of this curriculum! After we made the chart, we played!

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And that sums up our first two weeks!

Upside:

  • We had a lot of fun learning together!
  • It brought quite a bit of order to our house. I am determined to do a good job with school, and make sure it gets done! So, we would all get up, get dressed, have breakfast together, then clean up a little before school. After school was finished, it would just be lunch time! I love the order and scheduling it adds to our day.
  • Jackson is really starting to learn a lot of his letters. When we started, he could only recognize 2 or 3 letters, but now gets about 7 right, without singing along with his ABC chart!

Downside:

  • I am tired.
  • It is hard with a toddler.
  • I can tell there will be rough days! After the first week, Jackson had trouble sitting still during flashcard time! So, we improvised and did only half at a time.

 

We had a great two weeks, and I’m excited to start into phonics next week!

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Categories: Family Events, Home Schooling | Tags: , , , | 2 Comments

A Big Year for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger & Suzanne Woods Fisher

 

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This is Book 3 in the Adventures of Lily Lapp series for girls ages 8-12. It is the second in the series I have read. I have enjoyed the simple fun the children have in both volumes I have read.

Lily is the oldest of four children in an Amish family. She has all brothers and life seems so unfair in her young life. I have to laugh at her distress over things that seem so silly. But then I think back to her age, and realize that most “small” problems were larger than life to me, as well!

Lily is growing up and changing. She is upset when her teacher announces she will be getting married, and will no longer be teaching. She has a misunderstanding with her cousin, her best friend, and the two are constantly disagreeing on the character of Aaron Yoder. The schoolhouse burns down, and Lily mourns her very own box of 64 crayons that perished in the fire.

These chapters are short and cute. It would make great reading aloud with families. Lily learns so many lessons about obedience, jumping to conclusions, and simple kindness. This volume is filled with morals we all want our children to learn.

I received the book free from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Categories: 50 Books in a Year, Book reviews | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

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