After weeks of total stress about what curriculum to choose, I finally decided on the Timberdoodle Kindergarten secular kit. Here is what we will be using and what category it falls under:
The Kit will be modified to this:
- 2016 Secular Curriculum Handbook for Kindergarten
- Language Arts:The Reading Lesson Book
- Language Arts :Spelling You See Level A Set
- Language Arts:What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know
- Language Arts:Getty Dubay Italic Handwriting Book A
- Language Arts:Tick Tock I Love Reading Phonics Set A (8 books)
- Math :Math-U-See Primer Universal Set
- Thinking Skills:Developing the Early Learner
- Thinking Skills:MiniLuk game
- Science :Science With Tots Deluxe Kit
- Science :Cola Fountains and Spattering Paint
- Science :Visible Human Floor Puzzle
- Science: Timkerlab book
- Geography :Beginning Geography
- Geography:Geopuzzle Complete Boxed Set of 6
- Fine Motor Skills :Sticker Dressing: Heroes & Rescue Missions
- Fine Motor Skills:Emergency Services Sticker Activity Book
- Fine Motor Skills:Construction Sticker Activity Book
- Fine Motor Skills: Kumon Mazes (4 books)
- Fine Motor Skills: Kumon Let’s Cut (3 books)
- Fine Motor Skills:My First Scissors
- Art:Oodles of Doodles
- Art :The Usborne Big Drawing Book
- Art : Djeco Friends Light Clay Kit
- Art: Djeco Chirp Chirp painting kit
- Art :Usborne The Big Book of Things to Find and Color
- Art: Brainfood Doodle Mats-Vehicles
- Learning Tools : Kum 4-in-1 Pencil Sharpener
- Learning Tools : Playfoam
- STEM: Morphun Blocks
I also have to suppliment with books from our local library. I can only hope they have a good selection, or a good inter-library lending network.
The other curriculum I absolutely love is Bookshark , but just can’t figure out how to make it work for us this year. Did I mention I love this curriculum? The literature based curriculum is wonderful. It has a lot less workbooks and worksheets, relying more on read-alouds and conversations about the books. It encompasses a wide range of topics. The Pre-k kit for ages 4-5 includes over 20 wonderful books, but the science is weak, the math is not advanced enough, and the language arts are also too basic. Peanut already knows his letters by sight, he can count to 12, and to 20 with help. I can’t justify spending that kind of money when I’d only be using the literature portion.
Moving up to Bookshark’s Kindergarten level (ages 5-7) your child should be at the higher end of the range unless they are gifted. It encompasses History, Geography, Language Arts, Science, Math, Handwriting, and has an optional Art program. I love the 28 book selections, the science has experiments, it uses Math U See, Handwriting Without Tears, Explode the Code. I love the 4 day schedule that leaves the 5th day open for other things. I love the flow of the curriculum, going from dinosaurs to space travel over the 36 weeks. So why am I not using this? Peanut is only 5 1/2 years old and he has autism. He is a kinesthetic/visual learner at the moment and Bookshark isn’t quite as good of a ‘fit’ for him as Timberdoodle. He likes to be read to, but his comprehension isn’t there yet, and his conversation skills need a lot of work, so actually discussing the books would be really hard for him right now.
Also, Bookshark Kindergarten takes about 2 hours a day for the typical child, so I can expect Peanut to spend about 3 hours on it right now. This is just too much for a 5 year old like mine, at least in my mind.
Timberdoodle states that it takes 30 minutes to 3 hours a day for their curriculum. I can see us spending maybe an hour on workbooks, and the rest of the time on the more fun hands-on activities. It won’t seem like work, but play instead. That’s a big plus.
I really hope in a year or two we can try out Bookshark, but for now, my busy, hands-on, active little guy would do better with Timberdoodle. In a perfect world I would combine the two, but I’d have to win the lottery first! haha.