While most of my regular posting is being done on Mason’s blog right now I’ve also been taking a bit of time to evaluate where we are in our homeschool year. We’re planning to pick school work back up gradually in about two weeks (Mason will be a month old) though we started history this week – the kids wanted to. Here’s the plan for the rest of this school year (5th grade, 1st grade, and Kindergarten):
Makayla will be choosing at least one literature book to read, discuss, and analyze with me. Joseph and Emma will continue reading aloud to someone daily.
Makayla will be creating her own list of words she frequently misspells to study, adding to it as needed. Joseph and Emma will work through more of All About Spelling 1 which reinforces their phonics as well.
We’ve done a good bit of our science for the year already. Makayla will next dive into a health unit with The Care and Keeping of You: The Body Book for Girls. We’ll do this one together during quiet time a few days a week. Joseph and Emma will be choosing science topics to learn about centered around some of the Magic School Bus Chapter Books we have. They’ll take turns choosing topics.
We’re going to work our way through the Renaissance and Reformation with some great living books and notebooking. We began reading Ink on His Fingers by Louise Vernon this weekend. It tells the story of Gutenberg and the moveable type printing press. When we finish that book we’ll start a very large book called The World of Columbus and Sons by Genevieve Foster. This book looks amazing and will take us through the lives of Christopher Columbus and others living at the same time (such as Queen Isabel, Leonardo Da Vinci, Tsar Ivan, Charles the 8th, Bartholomew Diaz, Michelangelo, Erasmus, Martin Luther, Vasco da Gama, and more. We will be reading this one for several months. Along the way we will also read five more books by Louise Vernon. I’ve written down in the Columbus and Sons book when to begin each Louise Vernon title so we’re reading them at the right point in history. The titles are:
- The Man Who Laid the Egg – Erasmus, Church reformer in the early 1500’s
- The Beggar’s Bible - John Wycliffe who makes an English translation of the Bible
- Thunderstorm in Church – Martin Luther, reformer
- Night Preacher - Menno Simons, a Catholic priest who became the leader of the Anabaptists, now known as Mennonites
- The Bible Smuggler - William Tyndale's work of translating, printing, and distributing the Scriptures
Once we finish these plans Makayla and Joseph will do standardized testing. I chose not to use the portfolio option this year when I realized just how crazy our year would be with Mason joining our family, so the only other option is using a standardized test. I blogged about Makayla’s testing experience last year if you’re interested in why we tried it, what we learned, why I still think standardized tests are incomlpete at best, and where we get our tests.
How is your school year going? Are you excited for the rest of the year? Have you started planning next year’s curriculum yet?