Tuesday, August 7, 2012

"Not" Back-to-School Blog Hop---Curriculum Week (Part 1)

Not Back to School Blog Hop                                  I decided to participate in the 4th Annual "Not" Back-to-School Blog Hop!  What a great way to celebrate "not" going to school!

This week is curriculum. Unlike many, I don't use one specific "brand" of curriculum. I use this form here and that from there and A LOT from the library. 

What I'm going to do is share what I'm using this year and why I'm using it.

We started mija in Singapore Math when she was almost 4 years old and 
we haven't regretted it. It just seemed to fit her personality. It goes from concrete to pictorial to abstract. While it doesn't come with manipulatives,   I bring out my own poker chips or cubes when needed. Each year is divided into two books A and B. Each semester (A and B) has a textbook and a workbook. What I do, and what I would do with any math curriculum, is have her work a few problems of various skill levels. If she "gets" it, why bother doing the rest of the problems.  On the other hand, if she needs more work, there are always the review problems in the textbook to add to the workbook work.  
If it ain't broke, don't fix it!

If I had my choice, we'd be using Total Language Plus. We used it the end of last year and loved it. Mija read Charlotte's Web and the curriculum then incorporates the literature into the grammar, spelling, vocabulary, and more.

We don't have the money to purchase for now, so I'm using the old, faithful McGuffey Series (McGuffeys Eclectic Readers Series)
 for reading. I wanted to make sure we had the traditional, Christian based readers, so we have the set from Mott Media. You see the set in the picture?  I got that same set at a thrift store for $5. (Cha-Ching!) You can't beat the quality and variety of literature in the books along with the good morals.  I've used them hear and there as need, but this year we will start out totally with them for our reading.

Now for language arts, you can't do much better than FREE.  You see, awhile back I downloaded a whole grammar text from Homeschool Freebie of Day. I mentioned previously that you need to sign-up if you haven't already. The book is entitled The Child's Own English Book published in 1920. You might think it's dry being written back then, but it's not. It offers both games and written exercises for each lesson.

While Total Language Plus does include spelling, I still continue to use 
Spelling Power.  Like how the words are broken down, phonics/spelling rules are still introduced or reviewed, and you don't have to keep going over words you already know. I do, however, do it a little slower than the book recommends. If mija does well, we move on, but if she doesn't do well, we hang out on that lesson until mastery. I also use other approaches to reviewing than just the ones mentioned in the book. I believe all educating parents should adapt the curriculum to their child and not vice versa. That's part of the benefits of educating at home! 


Mija finished learning cursive last school term, so we are obviously going to need to brush it off. We'll do that by doing copywork. Copywork for those who may not know, is having the student copy pieces of literature, poems, verses, definitions, etc. in their best handwriting. This way they practice their handwriting and are also exposed to correct grammar, punctuation, spelling, different forms of literature, etc.
This year mija will be copying Bible verses, poems, definitions and statements from all subjects including history and science, and sections from Copywork for Little Girls (Copywork for young Ones). I'm not going to have her write in the book, however, so that way I can reuse or sell it when we're done!

Well, there's my 3 R's!  Come pack on Thursday for Part 2 in which I'll discuss my "elective" subjects.
And don't forget about my BIG giveaway tomorrow!

1 comment:

Dawn said...

We love copywork for little girls. Have a great year.
Blessings, Dawn

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