What we're sticking with:
RightStart Math (we'll be in Book C this year)
This is the only one math curriculum we've used, so I have nothing to compare it to, but we both absolutely LOVE this curriculum. It is FULL of manipulatives, games, and mental work. I feel like this curriculum sets an extremely firm foundation on how/why math works; it is not a memorize-and-then-spit-it-back-out curriculum. I love that it attacks math through so many different angles. It is EXACTLY what I wanted and I can certainly see me using this for all three of my boys. It is definitely worth the price tag.
Getty Dubay Italics (Book C this year)
" Letter shapes remain the same from basic italic to cursive italic, eliminating the abrupt leap from "ball and stick" to looped cursive seen in other programs."
If you are not familiar with cursive italics, here is a sample page of children's handwriting.
What we're adding/changing:
History/Geography; Language Arts/Spelling/Phonics
At the end of 1st grade, Will's confidence in his reading skills was low. He could read, he just didn't think he could and because of that I decided that we needed to focus a lot more on reading in 2nd grade. Focusing on reading led me to Sonlight.
The further I looked into their program, the more I liked it. I like that the Language Arts works around the books they are reading, so they are familiar with the material and it's not something else that is totally new. I like that the History and Geography are also intertwined and that the weekly spelling words share the same phonics rules. I also like that there are lots of wonderful books from which we'll be reading and learning; it's not just memorization. I couldn't have hand-selected these books any better myself. And I especially like that all of the lesson planning is done for me! ;)
The price tag was a little steep, so I bought everything used through the Sonlighter's Club Forum.
The subject for 2nd grade science came from Will's request. (Actually, it came down to Space or Dinosaurs. :) ) I have heard many great things about Apologia and now that I have their book and notebook in hand, I can see why! These books are written on the child's level, but still gives all the details that crave. The notebook is going to be a wonderful tool with copy work from the Bible that goes along with the lesson, places for illustrations and notes, and vocabulary crossword puzzles.
I'm excited about the different projects, too! It's more than "just create a replica of the solar system with balloons" (although that is in there!), but there are more ideas like:
- Make a model of Stonehenge out of clay
- Make craters in a bowl of flour
- Learn how radar is used
- Make a telescope
- Track the phases of the moon
- Make clouds
We will also take at least one field trip to the Space & Rocket Center! Science is going to be so much FUN this year! :)
Will's reader for the first 24 weeks of Sonlight's curriculum is The Beginner's Bible and we will use this as a review of Bible stories. In addition, we will also be working through the two books of A Child's Book of Character Building.
Typer Island - Typing Instruction for Kids. Will used this a little bit towards the end of 1st grade. We're going to try to continue it a little further in 2nd grade at least once a week.
Music - I'd like to teach Will how to play a recorder. I played one "many moons ago" and really enjoyed it. He has expressed some interest in learning piano as well, but that's going to have to wait. :(
PE - Now that Will has recovered from the tendon lengthening surgery, he should be able to ride a bike and jump some rope! This year I think we're just going to focus on some of the "little things" that he physically couldn't do before. :) We're also going to look into Spring soccer.
Cub Scouts - Will is now a Wolf Cub! Since we're moving, this will be a completely new pack for us. I hope it will be a fun-filled year with lots of great, new friends! :)
Homeschool Co-op - We will continue meeting at least twice a month with our co-op group. He will join in the 4H group again as well.
State of Alabama- Easing into studying the state of Alabama, we'll be using the posters I from Legacy and begin with the environment, state bird, flower, etc.
Hopefully I'll find some time to review our 1st grade year as I just realized I haven't done that yet. Oh, and our 1st day of school will be August 3, 2010. We will begin with 4-day school weeks and then after we move, we'll transition to 5-day weeks (I hope).
I'm so ready for school to start. The chicken pox and heat have kept us cooped up in the house for far too long with*nothing* to do. I look forward to some routine in our days again. I think the kids are, too!