Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Organizing homeschool stuff - 1st grade

Keith and I have been reviewing all of our homeschool materials this week. We have a system pretty much in place, and are just about ready to start for the new school year. School will start August 3rd for us. Reason being that it is just so bloomin' hot in August, it's not like we'll be spending tons of time outside. We might as well get school up and running, so when the weather turns a little cooler, we'll be able to enjoy visiting different things around Florida.

Our subjects are divided as:
* Language Arts and Literature: we'll be doing units based on poetry, Aesop's fables, folk tales from different countries, tongue twisters, common phrases "when it rains it pours". Then there's the normal word/sentence/paragraph structure stuff: punctuation, prefix, suffix, contractions, spelling words, nouns, verbs, etc.

* History and Geography: we're starting off in the Ice Age, cave men, using pictures to communicate - which will bridge into hieroglyphics and Egypt, pharoahs, pyramids. After the Egyptian Unit, we'll move into Central America: Mayans, Aztecs, Incans. Then European explorers and the founding of America. The 13 colonies, Boston Tea Party, Declaration of Independence. Then American Explorers, and other biographies. On the Geography days, we're learning about each of the 7 continents and each of the 50 states.

*Arts and Music: we're starting with a unit on colors - warm vs. cool, primary vs. secondary. Then moving into lines, shapes, patterns and textures. We'll be studying some famous artwork as well as creating our own artwork to reflect the technique we are studying. Who's up for some Jackson Pollack style painting? :) The Music days will begin with learning about the classification of instruments: woods, strings, etc. Then we'll be making our own instruments. We'll be studying and able to identify some classical composers. And finish up the school year with studying some patriotic songs and old hymns - who wrote them, what they mean and memorizing them.

* Math: Well, there's really not much to go into with 1st Grade Math. This is the one area that we will be strictly following the flow of a work-book. I had considered purchasing Math-U-See, but I had a hard time flipping my brain around to use it correctly, and I find that Joshua is like me, he does a lot of math in his head. I remember when he was 4 years old he would tell people he was "2 plus 1 plus 1". We have a couple of workbooks from Learning Horizons that we'll be using.

* Science: We have a goal of doing one science experiment each week. Science will be a series of Unit Studies and I'm considering having Joshua do his Science lap-book style. We are starting with Animal Habitats, Dinosaurs, The Ocean, The Human Body and each of the Systems, Matter: Solid, Liquid, Gas; Measurements: How long, how much , how hot; Electricity; Astronomy: The Solar System, Constellations; Earth; stories about different scientists

* Bible: Each of the kids' Bible lessons will line up with their Sabbath School's quarterly guide to facilitate them working harder to memorize their Bible verse.

We have quite a few fun things mixed in here and there. I still have to work on Megan's Kindergarten curriculum. For simplicity's sake, she'll be doing significantly less work than Joshua. Her main focus will be counting, practicing writing, learning to read, enjoying artwork projects and being read to.


Rachel H. said...

I just LOVE you and Keith's unity with the homeschool stuff. You have some really great ideas!

Anonymous said...

Sounds like fun! Email/PM me if you need any ideas for science stuff, I ran summer science camps for elementary schoolers :)

mrs darling said...

Does your husband help you with the homeschool stuff?

looks like you have some good things planned!

SoggyToad said...

How exciting! I am really looking forward to seeing your school year progress :) We are starting school early as well... Monday to be exact! Keep your great ideas posted.