Archive | August 2016

Our First Week of Homeschooling our Kindergartener with Timberdoodle

We did it. We managed to make it through the first week of Kindergarten. The first day was awesome! Little Peanut loved it. We used a workbox system for our Timberdoodle curriculum, and that just added to the fun.

We use a customized Kindergarten kit from Timberdoodle and I can’t say enough great things about this company. The customer service is amazing. The products are the very best. I love this curriculum!

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We use a 36 week, 4 days a week schedule. We go all year round, but we take the last week of every month off. We take our birthdays off too. And Easter. We don’t need to take Christmas off since it’s always on the last week of the month. This still gives us 4 weeks 17 days) wiggle room, so if anyone gets sick or we decide to take a vacation, no problem!

Our days consist of:

Box 1: Spelling You See A(modified so Peanut is using letter tiles instead of writing. We’ll write in the book as it was intended maybe in a year or so. For now, let him learn the letter sounds and how the words fit together.)

Box 2: Next we moved on to either a jigsaw puzzle (a 4′ visible human body – skeleton on one side, nerves and blood vessels on the other) or MiniLuk (a wonderful game that uses tiles to cover pictures).

Box 3: Now came reading with The Reading Lesson. He does very well with this so far. It’s a gentle and fun approach to learning how to read.

Box 4: As a reward for his reading, next is a sticker activity book. He loves all things truck and emergency service like, so he has a good selection of those to choose from. He deserves it, reading can be hard!

Box 5: Back to work. This time it’s either Getty Dubay’s Italic handwriting (once a week) or Evan Moor’s Beginning Geography (three times a week). Both are a bit difficult for him, but the fine motor control is starting to come along. It looks like Peanut is going to be a lefty like his mom!

Box 6: Now comes more fine motor control practice with Kumon Amazing Mazes and Kumon cutting books. We also bought Faber Castell’s My First Scissors. They are wonderful. They can be used easily, and by both right and left handers. I want a pair for me!

Box 7: Okay, so now it’s time for Math. Math U See Primer. We did two full units these past four days. We are now a week ahead! Peanut loves the blocks, and loves to make things with them after the math work is done. His favorite seems to be making tanks.

Box 8: After math comes a fun doodle book. Either Oodles of Doodles, Big Drawing Book, or Things to Find and Color. Peanut isn’t really fond of coloring yet, but he’s enjoying the different things to do in each book.

Box 9: Almost done workboxes now, just Developing the Early Learner, a critical thinking set of books that are a bit tricky but fun.

Box 10: Last workbox is another doodle book. We pick another one from the above list. On the last day of each month we do a bigger art project, something messy with a lot of paint or clay or glue, or all three!

And the best is coming….

Science is next. We use Cola Fountains and Spattering Paint Bombs (very messy, we do a lot outside), Tinkerlab, Usborne Illustrated Science Dictionary, and My First Science Kit. All messy but very fun.

When the messes are all cleaned up, time for STEM with Morphun blocks. Peanut absolutely LOVES these. They are sort of like Duplo blocks, but you can build sideways and diagonally. We’ve made a motorcycle, duck, fish and backhoe with them so far.

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And that is the end of our busy day. Not including Science and Stem, it takes us about 60 to 90 minutes to do. And what about Fridays? This is the day we relax, take it easy, and Peanut and I read a few stories from What Your Kindergartner Needs To Know. I plan to start using the local library too, so Fridays will be about 60 to 90 minutes of read-alouds, broken up over 3 or 4 sessions.