This Homeschooling Adventure

Just the other day, we completed our first nature study for homeschool. It’s something new we’ve started this year. It comes from Charlotte Mason’s educational philosophy; and it is highly recommended by the curriculum we are using. What a shame that we just happened to be at the beach! Ha! (I tried to post more pictures, but it looks like I'm going to have to do some research on how to do that! If you know how, do tell!!) Speaking of curriculum, I am truly pleased with the choices I made for this year. I have had many of you contact me in the past with questions about what I use, so here's the official list:

Adventures in My Father’s World (2nd edition for 2nd/3rd grade) – Sydney is technically in 1st grade this year, but she learned to read and write well last year. After MUCH deliberation between the 1st and 2nd grade programs, I could not be happier with the choice to go with this one. It includes Bible, US History, Science, and Art. She loves all of it and is learning so much!

Math U See – We started with level “Alpha” in Kindergarten, but didn’t quite complete it. I did many other things for math on my own last year (like time, money, shapes, etc). I have decided to quickly review “Alpha” this year, just to make sure she is getting it. When I know she has a great grasp of single digit addition and subtraction, I’ll purchase the next level. I just want to be cautious. No one wants their child to get behind in math, right?!

Spelling – I’m using a list my mother got for me of first grade words required in the GA public school system. Sydney writes the spelling words, she makes sentences with them, she plays games with them on Spelling City, and then we have a test. If any words are spelled incorrectly, they show up in the list again the next week.

Handwriting – She has sentences to write for many things we are doing, so handwriting practice is not really a problem. Still, we are reviewing all the letters and numbers these first few weeks of school. She is continuing to write a few numbers backwards, so we will keep on reviewing those. I have been told not to worry about it. She will most likely self-correct the backwards numbers as she gets older.

Reading – We’re basically keeping the library card busy! Right now she is on a “Nancy Drew” kick. I don’t have to worry about this child reading. She loves to read and never, ever has to be asked to complete it for school…yay for that!!! I’ve recently found some sites that have many of the classics online for free! We’re going to be searching out some books to read on the computer, for sure.

Character Development– I’m using “Polished Cornerstones” from Doorposts. I highly recommend this book! It’s an in depth study of the Proverbs 31 woman...full of great ideas and projects for girls (ages 4 to young adult) to complete. I’m positive that it will be tattered and torn after years of use with all three of my girlies! I know this company has a workbook to complete with boys, too. I'm sure it's just as good! (BTW, I also don't know how to include links yet. Help! I tried it once and it didn't work.)

Quickly…for Kylee (who is 3, almost 4)…I am concentrating on teaching her the letters and their sounds. I teach her on Mon, Wed, and Fri only. There are TONS of resources for preschool on the internet. I also use a couple of workbooks that I picked up at Walmart and other discount stores. Once she learns all the letter sounds, I’ll start teaching her to read. (Once a child can read, the sky is the limit!)

Come back in the next few days for a post on what I see as the benefits of homeschooling, as well as some of the disadvantages. I know there are some of you out there who are thinking about it as a possibility in the future, so my goal is to give you an honest assessment!