Sunday, August 29, 2010

Homeschool Shelf

I re-did our homeschool shelf and got our filing system a bit more easier to manage. 

Here are some of the shelves up close:

Starting from the very top, we have our Saxon Math manipulatives kit that lasts from K-3 and then our 3-hole puncher.  First shelf is some readers, AAS cards, OPGTR cards, K's piggy bank (we use the money in math) and pencils (of which I've since moved to a shelf K could actually reach lol)Second shelf is our "flimsy" books - workbooks and such and our organizer that I got at IKEA and absolutely love!  The trays slide out and in and even remove easily making it something I highly recommend for homeschoolers!  I don't file K's work every day, usually weekly or biweekly - so these trays work great for holding them till then.

Third shelf is our books, seeing how its the most sturdy of all the shelves, save the bottom shelf........we chose it to hold the heavy books.  Fourth shelf holds some dollar store containers I purchased a few months ago.  We have one for art supplies that go with Artistic Pursuits, one for Saxon math meeting supplies and others for miscellaneous items.  I went ahead and printed out several meeting strips and have them ready for our math meetings.

The last shelf holds the Saxon Math boxes and extra binders.  There is also some future curriculum items there and not pictured homeschool catalogs. 

I will do another post or video on our filing system hopefully.  We have another small bookshelf that holds audios, audiobooks, lapbook materials and supplies needed often.  Then we have a closet in the spare bedroom that is full of crafts stuff - I hope to go through it this week and organize it a bit more.  Then......we have 3 5-shelf bookshelf units in the living room full of books.  We have a whole shelf reserved for library books but sometimes we check out so many (I've checked out 100 at once) that we need another shelf.  We are some serious book folks around here lol. ;-)

Story of the World 1 - History Schedule

Here is my plan for history.  We stopped in K at chapter 10, so we have chapters 10-42 to finish - that is 33 chapters.  I combined some very short chapters with others, as you can see below, and that gave us a plan of 27 lessons or 27 weeks.  If however, we want to spend another week on a certain chapter, we will - this isn't a "I have to do this or else" kind of plan lol - just a model to guide us!

Chapters I'm combining
12, 13
14, 15
23, 24
32, 33
36, 37, 38

We plan on doing one chapter a week and here is our step-by-step guide on what we do with each chapter:
  1. Read chapter
  2. Narrations - if you don't know what this is, read this post
  3. Question & Answer
  4. Worksheets - maps, color pages, etc
  5. Test - just to see what she retained
  6. Projects/crafts
  7. Library books or encylopedia

1st Grade Daily Schedule

*Updated 1st Grade Daily Schedule here:

We are doing homeschool Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  Friday is our craft, projects, experiments, etc. day.  I'm scheduling for 3 hours of school time M-W but it may be shorter or longer depending on what we want to add that day.  We can always revert back to doing 1 1/2-2 hours 4-5 days a week if we want later on.  In my planning, I like having 1st hour, 2nd hour and 3rd hour.  That way we can have breaks after 1 hour or eat lunch after 2nd hour and so forth.

Monday, Tuesday & Wednesday

1st Hour
Bible - 10-15m
Reading - 20-30m
Math - 20-30m

2nd Hour
Grammar - 15-20m
Writing - 10m
Spelling - 10-15m
Memorization - 5-10m

3rd Hour
History or Science - full hour

Projects, crafts, lapbooks, experiments
Art, Music and/or Homemaking

Evening Work
30m evening reading Mon-Fri

Nate (husband)
Reads classics to K
Family prayer & Bible teaching
Teaching K piano

K's 1st Grade Curriculum 2010-2011

Our curriculum is pretty much the same as K because you may remember that I decided early on to stop in my tracks and hold off on pushing her ahead in grades

Bible - Golden Children's Bible
Reading - Finish OPGTR; books; click here for detailed post
Writing - Writing with Ease 1
Grammar - First Language Lessons 1 & Rod and Staff English 2
Spelling - All About Spelling Level 1 & Spelling Workout A
Math - Saxon Math 1
History - Story of the World 1
Science - Apologia Astronomy & Zoology 1 Click here for our new science

Piano - John Thompson's beginner
Composers/Classical Music
Artistic Pursuits 1
Pearables Home Economics 1

We have already finished several lessons in most of the books, so we will be doing a review the first week or two to catch ourselves back up.  For math she finishes Saxon 1, we will go straight into Saxon 2.  With reading, we finish the OPGTR, we will replace that time with the 20-30m morning reading of 'challenging' books.   With grammar, we are finishing up FLL1 and then going to do R&S English 2. We are also merging the spelling programs to work together.  I didn't list memorization because its under my post on reading but there will be a set time to practice memory work each homeschool day. 

For science, you can read what we are doing here.

History is one we barely begun (only in chapter 10) because we really did a lot of extra activities, library books and so forth and had such fun with it in K!  So we are picking back up with Ancient China.

The electives are really extras and something she will do in the evenings and/or weekends.  My husband is going to teach her piano with a self-taught program and we will see how that goes.  She is always doing art activities but I do want to try and get a formal art lesson in twice a month and then a homemaking lesson in once a week.

I also my add in some geography and you can read a post on what I'm using here. The history already adds in geography and social studies because we find the places on the map and learn about the people.  However, I do want K to learn the oceans, countries, etc. so I will be using those materials in the post I linked to for some extra geography.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

C-Span Free American Presidents Timeline Poster

This thing is so big, I had to go in the hall to get it all in the photo! Our table seats up to 8, in case you think this is small from the angle of the photo.

K loves it and it will be very useful when we study American History in 3rd grade.  For now, its going in storage since we will still be studying Ancients this year.

To get yours for free if you homeschool or are a teacher go here:

Sunday, August 8, 2010

All About Spelling Video

Go through my referral link if you decide to buy All About Spelling and I will be compensated for referring you!  We use it and LOVE it!

Friday, August 6, 2010

IndoctriNation Video

Seen this on several blogs today, very moving and I'm anxious to see the film.  Here is a summary of what IndoctriNation is about:

“IndoctriNation” is a new documentary film that explores one of the most controversial issues in the Church today.  Told as a road movie, the film follows Scottish filmmaker Colin Gunn and his homeschooling family in a big yellow school bus across America on a quest to uncover the origins of our modern government education system.

What he discovers is a master-plan designed to replace God’s recipe for education with a man-centered program that has fragmented the family, destroyed the social systems of our nation, and undermined the influence of the Church.

This film is a challenge and an encouragement to millions of Christians who need to know what history, experience, and the Word of God have to say about one of the pivotal issues of our time: the discipleship and training of the next generation!

More Videos:

I honestly believe that one day, homeschooling will be the norm for Christians.  We may endure ridicule now and all the stinging comments from others but just stay strong and train your children up the in the way they should go because they are something we can take to Heaven with us!  They are also important enough to devote our time to training! ;-)

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. ~Proverbs 22:6

2010-2011 Homeschool Weekly Schedule

*Updated Weekly Schedule here:

We are excited about new changes to our homeschool this year and one being our weekly schedule.  Last year we did 4 days with 1 day off for errands, etc.  However, I find that we can easily do just 3 and leave the projects for the 4th day and then have another day for errands and such.  Here it is:

Monday - Homeschool
Tuesday - Homeschool
Wednesday - Homeschool
Thursday - Errands, Library
Friday - Projects/Crafts Day; Art; Music

I talked it over with my daughter and she is ecstatic about the new schedule for 1st Grade! ;-)  She loves projects for history and science but really loves having a day set aside just for crafty stuff!  Also, this year she is trying to decide between Violin or Piano lessons - I'm trying to get her to go with the piano because its cheaper but I want her to choose so we will see if she can pick just one.

I will post our full schedule, curriculum and all that when time permits.