Our 2016-2017 is officially underway!
Mr. Sunshine is a 4th grader and Night Owl is a 2nd grader.
We are already on our second week, and I couldn't be happier.
So far, year round school is proving to be quite complimentary to our family.
I always enjoy reading about other people's curriculum choices.
Today I'd like to share our home school space + curriculum choices with you.
Mr. Sunshine's desk is in our dining room.
Night Owl's desk is in our living room.
Yep, we've become a book crazy house!
We do the majority of our homeschooling in our living room.
It's comfy and has great natural light.
The black storage box holds all of our curriculum books.
The end table next to it has a chalkboard globe with our Scripture verse,
and also holds our Bibles.
The big white book shelf holds our notebook binders, and a mix of library / personal books.
The bookshelf to the left of the chair holds books directly related to our weekly lessons.
This is new to our homeschooling space this year.
It was a play kitchen, which has since been transformed into an art / letter writing cabinet.
It's in our dining room.
We're using a variety of materials for our daily Bible study:
Draw to Learn the Psalms by Notgrass, God's Names by Sally Michael,
365 Days of Praise and Celebration by Julie Lavender,
free pages from Peregrina (not pictured), and they each have their own "thankful" notebook.
They also copy our weekly Scripture into their Bible Notebooks.
We do math 5 days a week.
Mr. Sunshine continues to have great success with Teaching Textbooks.
Night Owl is using A Beka 2 for the first half of the year,
and will move onto Teaching Textbooks later this year.
We've tried "A Reason for Handwriting" in the past,
but definitely prefer "Handwriting Without Tears."
The layout fits our style better, and the lessons have more space,
which makes them more enjoyable.
We do handwriting 5 days a week, with Monday being a special letter writing day.
I am probably most excited about Writing Tales by Amy Hastings Olsen.
Last year we tried using First Language Lessons,
which went completely against our preferred learning style.
Memorization, clapping, and singing were causing Mr. Sunshine to fall over in boredom.
(And, for those of you who know Mr. Sunshine, he is a completely eager and obedient student, so this made it clear to me that a curriculum switch was needed!)
Because he wasn't enjoying that type of teaching,
he really wasn't retaining as much as he could have.
I am so thankful I discovered Writing Tales!
In the beginning, the author explained how children learn through creativity,
which is exactly how we believe learning should be done.
The lessons are perfect in length, and thorough in content.
I want my boys to experience JOY in learning,
and I feel this is best achieved through experiences and creativity.
We do language arts 5 days a week.
Night Owl is using Just Write, which seems to be an okay fit for this year.
(I wish Writing Tales had a 2nd grade option. I'd totally use it!)
We are using Considering God's Creation by Mortimer and Smith for science this year.
The entire curriculum is based on the days of creation-
a completely clever and fun lay out.
The lessons are well written, and there are a lot of experiments and notebooking pages.
I wish there was a student book with colorful pictures, however, we have been able to supplement for this with library books.
We do science 3 days a week.
We continue to enjoy Sequential Spelling.
Mr. Sunshine will move onto book 2 soon.
This book has definitely given him a strong foundation for spelling.
Night Owl is using a list of 2nd grade words I found online.
We do spelling 4 days a week.
We are using Mystery of History Vol. 2 for history.
Mr. Sunshine really enjoyed Vol. 1 last year, so it was right to stick with it.
We are still doing coloring pages and activities.
I added notebooking pages in this year, too.
We do history 3 days a week.
The boys were very excited to add world geography to our curriculum this year.
After being disappointed with the original curriculum I ordered,
I decided to create my own geography program.
Our geography is based mainly off of the amazing book Window on the World.
If you do not have this book in your homeschool (or even just your home),
I highly recommend it.
We also enjoy using Children's Atlas of God's World, Passport to the World,
DK Geography of the World, and Our World by Millie Miller.
(Millie Miller is a wonderful author- my boys have loved Our World to pieces, and enjoy her USA book just as much. I highly recommend her books as well.
All of the books pictured above are great resources to any home/school!)
We do geography 3 times a week, with a specific country focus each week.
On Monday, I read parts of Window on the World,
Based upon suggestions in the book,
each boy picks a specific prayer focus for that country.
He writes his prayer focus on his notebook page,
and commits to praying for that for the entire week.
We also do a mapping activity on this day.
On Tuesday, we do a scavenger hunt with books to find answers to common questions, like, "What is the country's currency?" "What language do they speak?" "How do you say 'Hello,'"
On Wednesdays, we make food relevant to the country we studied.
Thanks for stopping by and taking time to peek into our little school.
In my next post, I hope to share our first two weeks of school with you-
we saw many lovely creatures during a field trip to the nature center,
tried baking s'mores in a solar oven, and even made coconut Haitian ice cream!