We are officially back to school! Our first day was Sept.22. first day of homeschool-3

This year I am teaching Grade 2 and Kindergarten. It’s hard to believe this is our third year homeschooling! Now, this is not a homeschool blog- but it does come up from time to time. I often get asked “how do you know what to teach?” We personally follow a Blended Program- which means some of our subjects follow the list of learning outcomes for our province- and some of our subjects are open as far as what I choose to teach. We are Aligned ie. meet the required provincial outcomes- in Language Arts (English) Math, Social Studies, Science and Health. We are not aligned in PE, Bible or Music. We do get funding to supplement our curriculum needs from the Province. I also have a homeschool facilitator to guide me throughout the year, offer teaching tools, curriculum suggestions and advice, and help with progress reports- not to mention a ton of encouragement throughout our journey!

Being sick leading up to the start of our homeschool year, and still being sick last week and this has been a challenge. Not to mention the sick, teething and very cranky toddler! I am definitely getting creative when it comes to finding things that keep the attention of a 17 month old. Thankfully I was able to take several hours to go through all of my curriculum and do a months worth of lesson planning before we were in the thick of the year. I know the rough estimates of where I would like to be throughout the year- how many weeks I need to complete all of our required materials- and where I would like to take holidays. Of course I will need flexibility if my kids need to spend more time studying a certain area- or if we fly through and need less time then I anticipated.

I like to lesson plan a month in advance- we are on a 5 day/week schedule. While it is not as pivotal to have a set lesson plan for kindergarten- my kindergartener is very enthusiastic about school! So, having a plan helps me to know what activities he can do, because I definitely do not want him to feel left out, or as though his school time is less important. first day of homeschool-5

Many people ask me if we spend 6 hours a day “doing school.” The answer is no! We spend an average of 1.5-2.5 hrs a day doing what I like to call classroom work, with an additional 30-45 minutes of focused learning time sprinkled onto a few afternoons. When you teach your kids from home there are so many opportunities to have teachable moments outside of our “classroom time.”

It works best for our family to have classroom time in the morning. After breakfast, E pulls out his bin of books- some call this a work box. G also has a bin. Generally we start with LA, then move onto Math. We alternate Social and Science on a 3 day/2day schedule from week to week. I cover Bible 3 times a week, and Health on the off days. Fridays are scheduled for a bigger Science Experiment, Themed Craft or Co-Op Activity. So far this schedule works, and is very similar to what we did last year.

Certain weeks we may move to doing Science/Social exclusively, depending on the unit we are covering. I am going to play it by ear. Here is a list of some of the curriculum we are using this year. In addition to these resources, I utilize a variety of teaching tools available to me through our Home School Co-Op as well as online. We also attend field trips, PE Class, and supplement our LA with class room writing workshops. Science and Social Studies is mostly covered with online resources as well as books from the library and hands on activities- nature walks, journaling, experiments etc. My 7 year old is attending sewing classes this semester- he is pumped to have the skills to make some awesome costumes and disguises.first day of homeschool-1

Kindergarten

  • {BIG Workbook} Kindergarten by School Zone
  • Get Ready for the Code A,B,C from the Explode the Code Series
  • Get Ready for Kindergarten by Kumon
  • Kindergarten Wipe Clean WorkBook by Scholastic
  • Alpha by Math U See {we will not start this until after January}
  • 1+1+1=1 Printable Resources from www.1plus1plus1equals1.com
  • Who is God and Can I Really Know Him? JR Note booking Journal from Apologia

first day of homeschool-2

Grade 2

  • Smart Start in Language Arts Grade 2 by JoAnne Moore
  • Primary Math 2A and 2B by Singapore Math
  • My Book Of Cursive Writing Words {Ages 6.7.8} by KUMON
  • The Complete Canadian Curriculum Grade 2 {Science and Social Studies}
  • Health Safety and Manners 2 by Abeka
  • Who is God and Can I Really Know Him? Jr Note Booking Journal from Apologia

Before we started school, I took a little bit of time to meet with each of the boys. We talked about setting some goals for the year, things they would like to try and what they enjoyed most about last year. It was helpful for me, and something I hadn’t done in previous years. There are a lot of things I can tell about my boys just from observing their behaviour each day- but it was really neat to hear from their hearts about this part of life.

I purchased “The Ultimate Homeschool Planner” by Debra Bell- and I am really loving this resource. It is so much more then a lesson planner. It gave me some great reminders about character building, family life, personal growth and the reasons why we have chosen to homeschool. It has also reminded me to pay attention to the big and little ones in the house. There are definitely days when I feel spread very thin between our 3 kids. I am trying to remember to do more together and foster independence. If that makes sense.first day of homeschool-4

-Miss Ash

P.S.- I am slowly building our stash of “fun stuff” when it comes to learning. Some of my boys faves are: lego, magna formers, snap circuits, k’nex, super mind magnets, play dough,  4M science kits, and lace and trace.

One thought on “Back to School”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *