Saturday, August 17, 2013

Embarking On A New Homeschool Year

Our new homeschool year starts Monday!! I have Benjamin doing 1st grade and Anna with some Pre-K work. Since we have our very own dedicated school room I thought I would give you a very short, and perhaps boring tour of our schoolroom. It is quite bare still, but I just love this room. It is all square and perfect and it isn't my dining room!!!

to the left of the doorway.  That is my desk! The table on the right is currently our school table.  I foresee us needing a bigger table in another year or so.

Our lovely window that looks into our yard and garden.

We have our own door outside.  This room actually has zoning to be for real home office or something like that because it has its own entrance.  The bookcase holds early readers and books of interest, Catholic/religious/saint books, read aloud books, and then some extra school supplies.  The closet is a mess currently but inside we are going to install some shelves and it will hold some more books and craft "stuff". 

My cat, Bunny, showed up to get into the action here.  He is completely nocturnal...if nocturnal means waking for the two hours between the kids going to bed and the adults going to bed...And yes I know he is rather large and fluffy *shrug*

yup....he's large.  But I love my Bunny Fuffins
And a little of what we will be working on this year...

I decided to start our school day with a "basket time".  There were a few things I wanted both Ben and Anna to be working on and this way I think Beatrice will be ready for a nap by the time we are ready to start academic work.

So in our basket is some:
-Shel Silverstein Poetry.  If you never read these poems as a kid your should check them out to read with your kids.
-Everyday Graces by Karen Santorum.  It is a book about learning manners through lessons in literature
-Golden Children's Bible
-Kindergarten Stories and Morning Talks.  This is a book I picked up from Hillside Press.  Little stories for each month that cover certain seasonal topics
-A coloring book about learning the Ten Commandments
-Chats With God's Little Ones. Beginning faith and catechism study
-Catholic Mosaic-saint/liturgical year activities

Ben 1st grade:
-Abeka 1 Arithmetic. Loved it for Kindergarten so don't fix what ain't broke.
-Little Angel Readers.  We have a section left to finish from Book 2 and then we should be able to plow through Book 3 pretty quickly.  After that we will either do Book 4 or start Primary Language Lessons.  I will decide that when we get there.
-CHC spelling A and grammar A.  Not much to say there...this boy needs to learn spelling and grammar and these looked like they would do what we needed.
-Seton for Handwriting....I picked it basically because of the beautiful artwork in it.  As far as I can tell (and I am likely totally wrong) handwriting is handwriting so pick the one that looks the nicest.
-MODG recommendations for poetry memorization
-St. Joseph First Communion Catechism for religion

PreK for Anna:
Well I basically going to try what I used with Ben and hope for the best.
-Teach your Child To Read in 100 EZ lessons
-BOB Books
-Rod and Staff/Seton PreK workbooks for basic math and reading/writing skills
She is not exactly reading ready like Ben was so we will be moving very slowly and just see how it goes.  She is a brand new 4 so if we get good letter and letter sound recognition under her belt I will be quite happy.

I also made these very simple chore charts for Ben and Anna.  Just the basics of personal hygiene and tidiness.  Trying to make keeping their "spaces" neat part of the daily routine.  And Ben will take over feeding the cat and fish.  After this becomes routine I will reevaluate and possibly add more things on for each, but this is a good start.  Previously they did chores as they were assigned, "Ben please go pick up the books and put them back in the basket..."  This way they can check off their daily tasks.

Prayers for all who are preparing and beginning their new homeschool year!!


Lauren Frisch said...

Thanks for linking in the Catholic Homeschool Group, I love seeing what others are teaching. :) Our oldest doing a preK/K combo (she's got a late September birthday) so I've still got lots to learn.

I need to check out the 'Everyday Graces' and 'Chats...' books, I keep hearing good things about them. Thanks for all the good ideas! Good luck with your school year! :)

Katherine T. Lauer said...

So exciting! I'm pleased for you that you have your own schooling room now. That will make such a difference. Our chore assignments over here are going fabulously. I am very pleased to have graduated beyond the kids just doing chores whenever I said. They have gotten really good at their jobs now.

Julia said...

Ooh! Get a couple of good, colorful maps for those walls! I used to do a weekly "scavenger hunt" with my kids and our map of the US; I'd have them find three rivers west of the Mississippi, two cities in Ohio with a population of more than 100,000, a state with more than six lakes, etc. They begged to do this, and it was THE easiest way to learn to read a map, because I could brief them on the various keys beforehand. When they got a bit older I had one of the kids make up the scavenger hunt.

Anonymous said...

I found this very interesting, even if I don't have kids! jae

Jamie Carin and Claudio Romano said...

Julia that is exactly what i want...some MAPS!! Not in the budget currently bare walls for now :)

Jen said...

I have a spare smallish world map I can bring you. They come with some donation solicitation, I have gotten so many I keep them for wrapping paper or pitch them (and because we don't have so much wall space). Thanks for sharing what you are doing with both. I'm still trying to decide how much to do. We may ease into it instead of a big official start and see how much feels comfortable, but something similar to what you are doing with Anna.