Thursday, August 28, 2014

Curriculum 2014-2015


A new school year has started, and  new books have been cracked open in our house. This year I have a 2nd grader, a preschooler, and a baby. This is also the last year I don't have to worry about reporting to my school district, so I am enjoying the laid-back non-stress year as much as possible.

This year we are approaching school with a unit-based classical style, as a family. Although my four-year-old may not understand everything, she is enjoying "doing school" with her big brother. I am loving how we are bringing all the subjects together by using RC History, which is a Catholic, classical, literature based approach to history. The co-op we belong to, Classical Catholic Memory, is also easily fitting into the units we are studying since they are both based in the ancient world this year, and the time of the Old Testament. They are both building a timeline through the year and I hope for the crossover to help Sebastian see connections in real life.

Second Grade

  • Connecting With History- Volume I- Ancient History
    • Bible Timeline for Kids
    • New Catholic Picture Bible
    • Usborne Time Travelers
    • Founders of Freedom
    • Ancient World (Usborne internet-linked)
    • Classical Kids
    • Old Testament Days
    • Famous Figures of Ancient Times
    • Map Trek (for geography)
    • Many books to read (independent and read alouds)
    • We are using the Institute for the Excellence in Writing's approach for the writing assignments and notebooking
  • Classically Catholic Memory- Alpha Year
    • Ancient World History
    • Animal life
    • Skip Counting and Geometric Formulas
    • Asia and Australia Geography
    • Great Words
  • Math-U-See
    • Finishing Beta this fall and starting Gamma in December (ish)
  • Easy Grammar
    •  This is simple, short, and gets the point across. There are no fights when we do a lesson from this.
  • Spelling-You-See
    • Wild Tales (level C)
    • We had been using All About Spelling, but Sebastian was not retaining the rules and started crying during spelling. We are giving this a try for the year. You can expect a review at some point.
  • Harcourt Science 
    • We haven't found a homeschool science curriculum we like. For now we buy these used public school texts online for about $4 each and read through them. Sebastian loves science so I am still looking for the right books for him.
  • Signing Time
    • The kids started watching "Signing Time with Alex and Leah" on Netflix, so we have added ASL as part of school. We use it in memory work and it is a fun treat.
  • Prima Latina
    •  I thought adding Latin would be a fun way to learn about our grammar, help with science words, and just be a nice break during the day. Sebastian is so sophisticated learning Latin in 2nd grade!
  • Music
    • I am the music teacher at our co-op, and this year we are learning recorders!
  • Home Art Studio
    •  This is the easiest way to do art at home with the kids. They can do it together and we have a lot of fun following along with the DVDs.
  • Faith and Life Series
    • Along with our Catholic Bible, a Saint a Day read along book, and many rosaries, we have our religion covered very well in home school. We also memorize Bible verses as a part of our character training.
Just some of the books we are using this year.

Pre-school

Kaelyn is not ready for formal school yet, but she does like to "do school." I oblige her by having her learn a letter a week (or so, sometimes it goes longer).  We read books, do crafts, and have fun in a non-formal and non-stress way. I am making it up as a go, but these are the resources I am using:
  • Books from the library!
    • We listen to tons of audio books in the car, and it is a great way to build vocabulary
  • Handwriting without Tears
  • Pinterest
    • Seriously- this is the best way to find preschool crafts EVER.
  • Catholic Icing 
    • It is a great resource to bring the faith into our crafty time.
    • I use her Catholic ABC's program as well as additional crafts she blogs about.
  • Signing Time
    • The kids started watching "Signing Time with Alex and Leah" on Netflix, so we have added ASL as part of school. We use it in memory work and it is a fun treat.
  • Home Art Studio
    •  This is the easiest way to do art at home with the kids. They can do it together and we have a lot of fun following along with the DVDs.
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