2011-2012 School Year In Review

by Dani


I really meant to blog about our homeschooling year WHILE it was happening, but, well, life got in the way so I'll just do a short recap!

June 1st was our last official day of the school year, but since we took some time off in Sept-Oct when Lil' Bug came home we aren't quite done.  We're taking June off and then will start 6-8 weeks of summer school July 1st.

This last year we again used My Father's World as our core curriculum. Butterfly did MFW 1st grade and Cricket set in with us for the Bible, Science and History. He did his own phonics and math from MFW Kindergarten which is what Butterfly did in the 2010-11 school year.  For the most part I was very pleased with the curriculum. My main goal for getting Butterfly reading was reached, and Cricket is also reading simple CVC words. About half way though the year I really felt that the math as designed by MFW just was not working for us. It is suppose to be
integrated into the whole program with no separate math curriculum and is primarily hands on stuff.  This was just not systematic enough for me and things were falling through the cracks. I realized that I, as a teacher, need a textbook and workbook for math. So we started Singapore Math at level 1A. It was an excellent decision, and we are now gaining ground in math.

We also did homeschool co-op this last year. The kids took a number of interesting, fun, and enriching classes. I blogged about the first semester here and the second semester was basically a continuation of the same classes for the kids.

For those who are using My Father's World and combining a K and 1st grader here is what our daily schedule looked like: 

For all 3 children (1st, K, and pre-school), circle time with singing 3-4 children's songs.
We would then do our calender time.... day of the week, month of the year, mark the date, and identify and graph the weather.
Then we would sit at the table and Butterfly and Cricket would do the number of the day and the math from MFW that goes with that. (counting sticks and money, etc).
Then we would do the Bible portion of MFW 1st including having Butterfly narrate the Bible passage and color any timeline piece. During this time, Ladybug would color, draw, or cut.
We would close our Bible time by singing 2-3 hymns and praying. (My goal is to teach the children the melody and at least the first verse of a dozen hymns a year)
I would then either have Butterfly do her verse copy work or work on a math activity by herself while I taught Cricket his phonics from the MFW K program. Ladybug would sing the songs with us and sometimes work on writing her letters or name then she was excused. Once Cricket finished the phonics for the day he was also excused.
I would then call Butterfly back and we did all of her phonics work. Once we started Singapore Math, we did it after the phonics was finished.
On science days, we would do the reading and experiments in the afternoons. I would also read aloud to them over lunch when I could.

Now for some pictures....

An example of Cricket's work from early in the year.

And some of Butterfly's from early in the year.

Butterfly working on math activities.

Cricket works on his phonics.

Transient

Science day involving shells.

Butterfly's first Bible notebook page completed.

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Typical scene... Butterfly working on her Bible Notebook while Lil' Bug does a puzzle, and Cricket works on a Math activity.

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Ladybug finally started to be able to write some letters...

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Science day... learning about water and force through a water wheel.

Lil' Bug occupied!

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This is some of Butterfly's best work done in early May.

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Celebrating our 100 Day when we had completed our number chart 0-100.

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So that's our school year in quick review!! Hopefully I will do better at blogging this coming year. :)