Thursday, August 8, 2013

Ready for School!

As I mentioned yesterday, I've finally submitted the paperwork required by our state so that we can homeschool for another year.  This involves putting together a plan for each child including the coursework planned for all of their subjects, and the dates that you plan to submit quarterly reports.  So, I have to have a basic idea of what materials we are using, along with what our calendar will look like for the whole year.  This year I also had to work around that I might not be here on Monday or Tuesday, as I plan to substitute at the local school again.  That means that certain subjects need to be planned for certain days, as my husband will have to take over on those Mondays and Tuesdays that I'm not here.

So, anyway, I thought it would be fun to give you a visual of our plans for this year.
Our "Schoolroom"
This is our schoolroom, AKA our kitchen.  And here are our books!  This is a bit misleading, as we also have bookshelves in almost every room of the house, and huge maps and a timeline on various walls in the hallway.  But these are basically the things I told the school about.

Poetry and Bible
We've been using "The Golden Children's Bible", but are almost finished reading the whole thing!  This year, we will start "The Bible Story" which is a 10 volume collection by Arthur S. Maxwell, which covers the entire Bible.  These are books from my childhood, and I'm excited to read them to my kids.  Lily will also be starting "The Early Reader's Bible."  Rory read this when he started school, and has passed it down to his little sister.  We're also going to add in the poetry of Robert Louis Stevenson, using "A Child's Garden of Verses."  This book actually has a dual purpose, because it is illustrated by Thomas Kinkade, and we will be studying painting this year for art.

Lily's books
Lily loves workbooks!  It's confusing to me how two kids in the same family can be so different, but she will do page after page.  So a lot of her kindergarten work includes workbooks - phonics, math, and handwriting.  She'll also be learning to read, using phonics books like the Bob Books, along with the Early Reader's Bible and various other beginning reading book (Big Egg was one of Rory's favorite first books!).  She has also requested to learn about "planets," so we'll be reading about the solar system, and completing a coloring book I found free online from "Windows to the Universe."

The Arts
As I said, we'll be studying painting and painters this year for art.  I found this book called "Paint Magic" and I am so excited to dig in!  In fact, I'm going to make sure I have a set of brushes of my very own, because I want to do the projects with the kids.  It introduces tons of painting techniques, with step-by-step instructions for a finished painting, along with other ideas for using the same technique.  Rory wanted to study about John James Audubon (he's a fledgling birdwatcher), so each of the kids has "Audubon's Birds of America Coloring Book" from Dover Publications, and that tiny little book standing up there is a copy of Audubon's Birds of America.  We're also planning to continue using "The Story of the Orchestra" by Robert Levine.  We actually started this last year, but it is really a good book for introducing kids to all types of orchestral music.  It gives information about different musical periods, with several composers for each, and also a section about the instruments of the orchestra.  It comes with a CD which includes musical excerpts to go along with the information, and even directs you to listen for certain things in the music.

Rory's books
So, as I said, my kids are very opposite in their ideas of school!  Rory hates workbooks.  And writing, in general.  He will write if there's a reason to write, and that's about it.  But he absolutely loves to read, and to "do stuff."  So we do have a math book - Math Mammoth, which we finally started halfway through last year.  I wish we'd done it sooner, as it is a much better fit than what we had been doing.  However, because we started the book late, he is still in the same grade level.  Oh, well, he'll either catch up, or he'll never take Calculus.  At least he's understanding it now!  We're also going to be using Noah Webster's "The American Spelling Book", which I found free online here.  We'll use it for spelling words, and copywork and dictation exercises, as there are sections with word lists and sections with sentences and paragraphs, which get harder the farther you go.  Rory is also going to continue using "Harvey's Grammar and Composition," which can partly be done orally.  He'll be reading biographies of Nathaniel Bowditch and Davy Crockett, "Treasure Island", "Seabird" and "Tree in the Trail" by Holling C. Holling for American history and geography.  We'll also be continuing "The Mystery of History, volume 1".  If you've noticed a slight bent toward the sea, it's sort of planned.  I found this Kaleidoscope Kids book called "Lighthouses", which tells about lighthouses all over North America, with experiments, art projects, and writing projects to go along with the information.  Rory also asked to study Chemistry this year, and we were really excited to find out that Apologia has come out with a brand new addition to their "Exploring Creation" series for the elementary level.  In fact, it's so new that we haven't received the book yet, so you are looking at a copy of the title page there.  Thankfully, I was able to download a two-chapter preview from their website, so we can start before the hard copy arrives!

Our "bulletin board"
Okay, it's really our kitchen wall, but hey.  It works.  I rearranged it a bit, partly because I found this adorable owl-shaped blackboard.  It was only $3 at Family Dollar, believe it or not!  It has two strings along the bottom with little owl-shaped clothespins attached to hang notes on.  You can't see it here, but right off the right side of the picture, we have a shelf which was made by my Uncle Walter to house my husband's owl collection.  You can see the owl pictures which were a project from last year.  We also have a beautiful watercolor by Lily (above the chalkboard), a hundred chart, and some new additions - an August calendar and Alphabet poster by Jan Brett, also free online, to go along with our artist theme.  The watercolors in her books are amazing, and I'm looking forward to borrowing many of them from the library.  She also has a new book out, called "Cinders, A Cinderella Chicken" which I'm thinking of getting for Lily, as Cinderella and chickens are some of her favorite things!

So, we've come to the end of our tour.  You know, this was much more enjoyable than the report I had to submit to the school.  Maybe next year I'll send them a blog post!

1 comment:

  1. I would be embarrassed to ever see what our IHIP looks like next to yours LOL I am far less detailed and I don't think I have ever submitted the actual book titles in my IHIP. I just toss them in with the quarterly reports as we use them, becasue I have NO clue in August what Jonathan is going to be doing in October, let alone February or April ! Part of that has to do with the fact that Jonathans learning style varies over the school year depending on his moods, so we like to change it up alot to keep things interesting for him. And you know you can just e-mail your paperwork too right ? No need for hard copies !

    Tina B


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