Thursday, April 28, 2011
C - Curriculum: 6th Grade & Preschool
I thought I would try to join the ABC's of homeschooling for the letter C - Curriculum. I do not know how to get the button grab code so if anyone can tell me directions - thank you! I thought I would post this article that was in Kolbe's newsletter with my two sons journal entries in it. I'm sorry I can't make it readable but you will see that when my kids are young, we do journaling. To see my website you can go to http://www.nucleusoflife.com/. If you would like to join this meme, just click on the link title above.
Religion: We are enrolled in a Religious Education class at a local parish. They use material from Loyola Press called Finding God: Our Response to God's Gifts. Loyola Press has some very good material. We started a notebook with some of LP's black line masters. They give quizes, fill-in-the-blank, crossword puzzles, simple crafts, questions to answer from research performed, etc. It is good for us. We also use Catechismclass.com. My sixth grader takes a small quiz at the end of each session and works at her own pace which frees me up. I occasionally ask her some verbal questions about her studies on the site.
Faith for our family is not about remembering facts. It is about knowing and serving God in everything we do. It involves a committement to put others first by serving those in need. It is a way of life. We often refer to the Bible through out our day as we accomplish some of our other subjects, especially writing and prayer time.
English: We utilize Kolbe Academy's course plans with Voyages in English 6. My daughter keeps a notebook with all her sentence diagramming in it. I love Kolbe's course plan because it keeps me on task and doesn't follow along in the book in order. They focus on the important areas your child needs to learn for their grade level.
Vocabulary: We utilize Vocabulary for Achievement Introductory Course by Great Source. I really like it because it groups words that have similar meanings together. It also give various forms of words. There is a short story included where your child has to choose the correct word that gives the closest meaning to the vocabulary word used in the story. My daughter keeps a notebook with all her Vocabulary quizes in it.
Writing: We use Institute for Excellence in Writing and Nucleus of Life. IEW is a wonderful extension to NOL. We start with summarizing and phase into incorporating opinions or facts from the Faith/Bible into our writing by 4th grade. My sixth grader keeps a notebook of all her drafts and final copies of her papers. She has compiled twelve writing assignments so far this year. For seventh grade I will be using Write At Home to bring in other methods of writing.
Reading: We utilize Seton's Reading 6 for Young Catholics/Thinking Skills and Reading 6 for Young Catholics/Comprehension along with various literature for Historical knowledge and development in virtue. The Seton readers focus on the Saints.
Math: We utilize Saxon Math 6/5. My sixth grader is on her 4th notebook for the year. I really like Saxon as it builds a wonderful work ethic into the life of your children. I just have to keep up with grading and corrections in a timely manner.
Science: We use Christian Kids Explore Chemistry by Robert W. Ridlon, Jr from Bright Ideas Press. This is a homeschool co-op class and the book seems to be very good and very user friendly. The teacher/mom has given three tests so far. She also found a good project description for a Science Fair the kids put on.
History: We use All American History/Uniting America's Story, Piece by Piece by Celeste W. Rakes from Bright Ideas Press. This is a very user friendly text and workbook for middle school. The Teacher's Manual has a lot of good ideas too. This is also a co-op class that I assisted teaching the first half of the year. The workbook has great ideas in the For Further Study section too where the children can give oral presentations if desired. We've played jeopardy in class and brought in colonial food too. My sixth grader read Madeline Takes Command and The Witch of Blakbird Pond and wrote some very nice reports on them.
I find that having two major subjects like Science and History for co-op classes help me tremendously with my homeschooling because the other teachers eliminate too much planning time. They come up with very good ideas and the Bright Ideas material is very useful.
Art: We've been using the National Gallery of Art Activity Book/25 Adventures in Art by Maura A. Clarkin. This book is wonderful as it exposes children to various artists and their special techniques with simple activities.
Music: A wonderful parishioner teaches my daughter piano lessons once a week with a recital and participation in guild at the end of the year.
Health: Health is a natural part of life and on-going skill for homeschoolers. Keeping sanitary, eating right, staying neat and organized are part of our daily routine. To help with documentation for the county, I've been using Developing Life Skills by Debbie Radliff.
Physical Educ: We attend Elite Dance Studio for ballet lessons once a week. The teacher used to be a Rockette! She is very good and makes the class fun even though she works the girls hard.
Pre-schooler: See http://nucleusoflife-ordainedpraise.blogspot.com/. We utilize a wall calendar and number line every day. We do daily devotions from The One Year Devotions for Preschoolers; Catholic National Reader: New Primer and Book One; MCP Math; MCP Phonics; flash cards and counting pennies; dance and movement class. I plan on purchasing some other readers from Usborne books and Catholic Heritage Curricula in the near future.