Monday, January 2, 2012

Mid-Year Homeschool Update

Due to illness and holiday fun, we've been slacking on the homeschool front for the past month.  We're going to get back into the swing of things on Wednesday after Limey picks up a boxful of books from the library.

I thought I'd post a little update of dd1's progress.  Here's the original plan I posted in the fall.  Progress updates are in red.

Math:  I was going to purchase RightStart Math Beta but I don't want to spend the money. Lol no, it's just that now that she has the basics down it's really easy to teach her without the formal stuff.  It would be a pointless expense. Instead we'll teach her from life as well as read some fun math books from the library like; A Dollar For Penny, Sir Cumference and Mummy Math.  She also likes the Khan Academy videos.  The first 4 Life of Fred elementary series books.

From reading, Khan Academy and a couple of practice worksheets, dd1 has learned how to borrow and carry.  A friend dropped off a bunch of books a couple of weeks ago and one of them was a multiplication sticker book so I let her complete that.  I also downloaded the free version of this game which she's also enjoying.

LA: We're going to delve into writing stories and poems this year.  I purchased this book from Amazon as a jumping off point for my poetry plan.  For the writing part, we'll go over parts of speech, how to write a sentence, paragraph etc.  I've also started a list of writing prompts for her to work with and bought a couple of Mad Libs books.

I ditched my lesson plan for LA in favor of the Winning With Writing workbook level 1.  Luckily I had purchased level 2 as well for next year because she has burned through the first one already.  

Shakespeare:  It's never to early to start them on the Bard.  We're going to read three plays from this series of books and watch the corresponding BBC Animated Tale.  I'm going to find some related activities to do and maybe a short performance or two.  

Haven't got to this yet.  I'll add it in when we hit the Shakespeare chapter in SOTW 2.

Reading:  I started a book list for dd1 to read next year but she blew through it in the past couple of weeks.  Instead I'm going to stock up on novels and get her to keep a list of what she's read.  I need recommendations for books though.  She's currently reading Charlie and the Great Glass Elevator. She's currently reading Little House in the Big Woods.

Dd1's reading choices are all over the place.  She's currently reading The Hobbit.  Last week she read James and the Giant Peach and The Witches by Roald Dahl.  She also really loves Geronimo Stilton and the graphic novel Bones.

Science:  We're going to finish up the rest of Building Foundations of Scientific Understanding and read related books from the library.  I also picked up The Usborne Science Encyclopedia which is fab.

We're almost done BFSU for the year.  I think we have about a dozen lessons left.

History:  History was our big subject last year.  We used my writeup of History Odyssey: Ancients.  This year we're going to continue learning about the subjects we covered by watching documentaries and the millions of books the library has. As an offshoot of the Ancient Greek portion of our studies, we're also going to read D'Aulaires Book of Greek Myths.   I purchased SOTW 2 so we'll also be covering the Middle Ages.  Hopefully that'll take us to June.

We finished the first half of the history curriculum and will move on to the second this week.  Our first unit of study?  Vikings!

Geography:  Did I mention that I love the library?  What I've been doing with all these subjects is searching the library for related books.  I'll put them all on hold in September and read them as they come in.  Our main spine for Geography is going to be The Usborne Geography Encyclopedia with Complete World Atlas

I think we're about two thirds the way through geography.  Volcanoes and other natural disasters is coming up for the next couple of weeks.

French:  Dd1 has already started on Rosetta Stone for French.  I think it's (learning French) a tad bit pointless myself.  If at some point we have to put the kids in school (hopefully never) at least she
won't be behind in it.  

She very occasionally does French anymore.  I'm not feeling Rosetta Stone at all.  She does it and passes each lesson but then retains nothing from it.  I need to find a different program but I've been having a hard time coming up with anything.

Art:  I'm excited about this subject.  We're still playing around with Creativity Express but I've been eying up Meet the Masters and Artistic Pursuits.  This is another of those boxed curriculum that I look at and think "I could totally write that myself".  So that's what I'm doing.  We're going to study three artists, read about them with some lovely books like this one and do a bit of painting.  

I feel bad about this one.  It's her favourite subject but we hardly ever do it.  This is entirely the baby's  It is really difficult to do art when there is a grabby baby constantly interrupting.  At the moment I'm just happy that dd1 reads and enjoys her Getting to Know The World's Greatest Artists books.

Health and PE:  Curriculum based on Basher's Human Body. Both kids want to take dance classes in the fall.  We're still doing Yoga. 

Almost finished this curriculum.  We were unable to find a nearby dance class so she's back in bowling.  Dd2 joined the class as well and they both enjoy it.
Logic: She'll be doing Logic Safari

She pulls out this workbook periodically to work on the puzzles.

Cursive:  Cursive worksheets.

She hasn't done any cursive.  Just haven't added it in yet.  I might push it to next year or do it over the summer.

That's where we're at.   


  1. bless you all..who has been sick then? whoever it was i hope you better now..sound like you are all so busy...i bet theres never enough hours in the day for to you all xxxx

  2. All the kids. Stuffy noses, chest congestion and nightly fevers.

  3. The best laid plans.....right :) Sounds like you still managed to get through a LOT. And Rosetta Stone isn't a favourite here either. If you really want to keep the French going, try L'Art de Lire - it is much better IMHO.

  4. I'll have to check that out. Thanks!

  5. Great update. I am going to do a similar update at the end of the year. I looked at Artistic Pursuits and Meet the Masters. Finally decided on Meet the Masters, but I never get to it either. Hopefully this semester will be better for us with that subject.

  6. Great plan. We use Artistic Pursuits and I just love it. :)