Better late than never, right?
Well, after Tank's doctor's appointment we started our first day of school. The baby went down for a nap (he was really over-tired) and we marched downstairs to our schoolroom like good little soldiers. This year Dash is in the first grade and Tank is just listening in and doing age appropriate activities (coloring, cutting, pasting, tracing). We started with the usual recitation of the date and Pledge of Allegiance, as well as prayer asking for God's blessings on our school year. Then we started our first read-aloud-- The Boxcar Children. Dash was SO interested in the story and paid attention the entire time! He didn't even get upset when we talked about the children's parents being dead and the definition of orphan.
I've been a bit nervous about starting since we switched to a new curriculum this year--from Five in a Row to Sonlight (Core K w/Advanced Readers). I loved FIAR and the great books that it used. However, *I* really needed more structure for my peace of mind. I am so glad that God brought me to Sonlight! I love the literature based approach and that it covers all subjects almost every day. Plus, it is SO EASY with a 4-day or 5-day schedule already planned out for 36 weeks of lessons. Subjects covered are History, Geography, Science (Usborne), Read-Aloud's, Language Arts (including spelling), Bible. Handwriting and Math are on my own (Italic Handwriting and Math-U-See).
It sounds extremely busy but in reality it only took us two hours (not counting math). Dash did really well! I was surprised that he had absolutely no problems with spelling and science. In science we learned about the water cycle and rainbows...which was quite a lot of info for a single day. We practiced spelling on the white board and left it up for daddy to see when he got home from work.
We also read "The Crow and the Pitcher" and did our own little study. We filled a glass with water and tried to see if the kids could drink it without using their hands (which they couldn't). Then I had them add one pebble (marbles in our case) at a time. They watched the water level slowly rise with each addition. Finally, the water was at the rim and they could take a sip. They learned that it really did take that crow a long time to drop all of those pebbles into the pitcher in order to get a drink-- good thing he didn't give up too soon! And that patience and perserverence have great rewards.
I'm really looking forward to tomorrow and how much easier it should be...although we all know how that goes. Things ended up a little hairy today trying to keep the baby entertained (since his nap was only an hour long).
Good night, ya'll!!!
We, too, switched from FIAR to Sonlight this year for my older two. We are still using FIAR for my youngest though...he's just beginning and the books are just TOO WONDERFUL to miss. :)
I really love Sonlight, but there is NO WAY we can get it done in two hours!! Ack! I guess maybe it is because mine are older (4th and 6th) so they have more stuff? We go from 8:30-12:00 and then from 1:15-2:30. It takes us ALL DAY! But it is going well...though I am tweaking it a bit as we go along.
I look forward to hearing all that you are doing with your little ones. I am loving having my boys home again....
you gotta love diving in on that first day!....we went "year round" this year cause of 4 months of morning(afternoon and evening) sickness last fall so we missed out on that inital dive with academics this year...maybe next year :) glad to hear it went so well...how's the wee one? i mean little one ....?!?
What a neat idea for visualizing The Crow and the Pitcher! I have noticed how well my kids remember things when they have something visual/hands-on that we did to "hang" the memory on.
...a fellow Sonlighter! You are such a kindred Spirit!!! We are using Core 1 this year. I love it, love it, love it! It is everything I expected hsing to be.
Glad you had a great first day. Praying the rest of the year is great, too!
I am sure that you have a beautiful place to live. We are blessed to live behind my in-laws. (I didn't think that at first.) This land has been in my dh's family for generations. It is so neat to raise our children when his family was raised, and to be close to his mom and dad. I love standing on the front porch watching them run up the hill to Mama & Papa's. Then they turn around and wave when they make it to the top!
I hope one day, they too will be able to build a house and live here, then my grandkids can run up down the field to my house and visit me!
Amy Beth <><
You are the 5th person this week that has told me they switched to something else (from FIAR). Very strange. We switched at the beginning of this year too. Hmmm.... For us it was the lack of structure and chronological scope and sequence. But, I still love the books! I am so glad that you found the right "fit" for you and your kiddos!!!
Oh, I LOVE your family photo in your latest entry. I wish that I could get my dh into the photo studio to get one done!
Am I the only one NOT switching from Five in a Row? I have five children (ages 8, 6, 4, 2, and 10 months) and think that Five in a Row will be the perfect "un"structured curriculum for us. Of course, I am using TONS of supplements for my 8 year old and am even using some supplements for my 6 and 4 year olds. I am a terribly disorganized woman (sigh) and have heard that Five in a Row requires a bit more structure and discipline on the mom's part.... I guess that the moms who told me that were serious!!! (Uh, oh!) Hmmm... It's 11:00 A.M. on Saturday.... That gives me a lot of planning time before Monday. I better hit the books!!!
Sounds like you got off to a great start!! And... What a wonderful family picture! Me, I prefer to stay away from the family photo scene. I have five kids that each added 10 pounds to my figure. (Ewww!) Can't wait to read about your year! I have the entire Sonlight preschool curriculum. I was planning to use it five years ago, with my oldest, then opted to send him to the public preschool. I didn't take the homeschool plunge until the middle of last year. Hmmm.... Maybe, if ya'all (ha ha ha! I NEVER use that word in "print", but suppose that is how *I* would spell it.) love Sonlight I will try it with my 2 year old next year.
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