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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

.Six Weeks In.

I blinked and somehow between my lashes flitting on my lid and opening up again six weeks of kindergarten have come and gone for my sweet Cadi. I want to do a really detailed home school post, but as always lately, I do not have the time right now. So I will keep this brief and really hope to add the details and photos later this week.

We are loving Cadi's main curriculum FIAR. This gentle Charlotte Mason-type approach is absolutely perfect. I cannot say that enough. The curriculum is a literature-based unit study, and I love it. It has allowed me to be really creative with my lesson plans, and the whole family has had a blast. This is exactly what I had dreamed home schooling to be like. As with anything there are always kinks to work out here and there, but for the most part we are in a great rhythm.

FIAR is great, but it definitely needs a phonics and math curriculum to go with it. Like last year I chose A Beka for Phonics. (I mainly just use the curriculum as a guide, as I am not at all fond of A Beka's love for busy work.) It is going well, Cadi loves Phonics, she loves reading, and we are working on building a love for handwriting too. {wink} I chose to use Saxon for math and am really loving, as I knew I would, the manipulatives included and the incremental method it engages. I love that Cadi will learn her math concretely before abstractly - something I feel was missing in a lot of my education.

We are choosing to take two weeks to study each of the books presented in FIAR volume one. So far we have done The Story about Ping , Lentil, and Madeline. For each book I pulled a godly character trait for Cadi to learn and apply to her life as well as a Bible verse that depicts that trait. This was not necessarily spelled out in FIAR, but it is something I really wanted to focus on this year. It is not hard to come up with godly character traits and verses that tie into each of the stories presented in FIAR. To me this has been the most rewarding part of our school year thus far. Cadi has picked up on these quickly, and we have been able to have many teachable disciplinary moments using her character traits that have happened outside of "school". Here is a video we put together of the the three traits and verses that she has learned thus far.

While, I of course, want Cadi to learn Reading, Writing, and Arithmetic, to me these character traits and Bible verses that she is hiding in her heart are just as important. Along with the traits and verses, Cadi has studied the country of China for Ping, the state of Ohio for Lentil, and the country of France for Madeline among other things. We have studied the culture, the foods, the people, clothing, and language for each place. It is making geography come alive for me! We have also learned about buoyancy and how God created ducks to float for Ping, the 5 senses - specifically the tongue for Lentil, and the inside of the human body for Madeline. Cadi has also learned about different mediums for art with her daddy and especially loved building a replica of the Eiffel tower out of sugar wafer cookies. We have listened to Chinese Han music, and studied different wind instruments. Our lessons have been fun and hands on and have allowed both of us to be creative. The last two weeks we talked about the poor and needy and showing compassion to them for Bible class, and without even collaborating with Jim we ended up studying the same passage of Scripture that he preached on for Compassion Sunday at our church! I love how God does that!

I have implemented Lap books this year for each unit study, and they have been amazing! I love that it organizes what Cadi has learned and now she will have a scrapbook per say of all of her FIAR books. Tomorrow I will try to put together a little slide show of our past 6 weeks. I have taken pictures of all three of her lap books. I plan on saving these lap books for her for years to come.

This week we started a new unit study using How to make an apple pie and see the world. I am really excited about this book! Can you guess where we went on a field trip yesterday?? (A whole post - I hope- coming on that!)



I have had so many people email me about home schooling. If you have more specific questions about what we are doing, how our day looks, etc., please feel free to ask in the comments section, and I will try to answer soon. I am not an expert, and even though I have my education degree and taught in a classroom, I am learning right along with Cadi. Home schooling is a whole different ball of wax.

One that I am thoroughly enjoying!

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Jamie said...

We used FIAR for first grade and loved it! We used My Father's World for kindergarten and now again for 3rd grade. We love My Father's World. We have 4 boys and I love that I can teach them Bible, hymns, history and science all together as well as many other things.:) I wrote an article on my blog called Reasons We Homeschool and Curriculum Choices if you are interested in reading it. Our boys ages are 8, 6, 4, and recently turned three.


Rebecca Meier said...

I just got FIAR for my son. I am so encouraged by your post about doing it and can't wait to get started.

I see a woman Jamie commented on your blog and I would love to see her post on Homeschool and curriculum choices are you able to help me navigate to her site?

Jamie said...

Hi Rebecca,

This is the link to my post on homeschooling. You might have to copy and paste it.

Jamie at Pursuing the Old Paths

Laura Sporcic said...

Tiff that was way too cute! What a precious joy she must be :)

Jen said...

as I was reading, I was wondering if you used lapbooks, and then I saw you were! we are doing sonlight, and doing lapbooks with the read alouds, and Hannah loves this part! We even found ourselves reading books from the library and then discovering more lapbooks to do with them as well! as a bonus, my 3.5 year old is hearing so much of this and grasping it all. It truly is a family event! It's good to see Jim involved too.

Jenn @ Beautiful Calling said...

Oh, we're doing Before Five in a Row at our house with Chloe (3 1/2) and John (2).

I love to hear that scripture memorization is so important to you. Chloe has many friends who can already read and write at 4. Sometimes {inside my head to myself} I panic and wonder if I am failing. But then I remind myself that we chose to make obedience, loving Jesus and His Word the primary focus of our tot years. Chloe can sing the New testament and during disciplinary moments, together we recall many verses she has memorized so we can apply them.

I know the Lord is pleased with these little ones learning of Him!

Thank you for popping by my site earlier. I enjoyed my visit here too. Happy belated birthday :)

Unknown said...

The younger years of homeschooling are precious and beautiful. Enjoy each moment. We are now heading into our final years of homeschooling and I wonder where time has gone?

Thanks for the blog comment. Not sure how you found my blog? Thanks for stopping by. The best posts are the testimony of what God did through my husband and his renal failure.


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