Homeschool ’10-’11

Hooray!  It’s almost time to start school again!!  We’re starting back on Monday and we are so ready to get back into a good routine!  This year promises to be another great one, with Abigail adding several new subjects in 2nd grade, and Catherine starting kindergarten.  Even Elisabeth might get in on some of Catherine’s coloring and craft action just to help keep her occupied while we do school. 

Abigail, in 2nd grade, will continue with Saxon Math (Grade 3), The Grammar of Spelling from Logos Press (Grade 3), and Shurley Grammar (Grade 2).  These are all a continuation from last year and all excellent curriculum.  She will also continue with the Literature recommendations from Veritas Press, reading the 3rd grade book list this year and using the Veritas comprehension guides for each book.  On the book list for this year are Charlotte’s Web; Stuart Little; The Magician’s Nephew; The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe; Misty of Chincoteague; Peter Pan; Ballet Shoes; Alice in Wonderland; and several other good classic titles.  She’s already excited to read them, and I confess that I’m excited to re-read the ones I’ve already read, and read some of the others for the first time right along with her!

New subjects for Abigail this year will be Cursive Handwriting, Latin, Bible, and History.  We’re using the Veritas handwriting books, which are basically just for her to work on her own, tracing and copying and learning cursive by copying first letters, then words, then passages from the Bible and catechisms.  For Latin, this year is a starter course using a book called Song-School Latin, which uses songs and fun activities to give her a basic vocabulary before beginning the full-blown Latin courses next year.  She was really excited about learning a new language, and asked us, “Where do they speak Latin?”  It kind of bummed her out when we admitted that no one speaks Latin anymore, but she’s still kind of excited, because she loves languages so much.  For Bible and History, we’re using the Veritas Press cards.  The curriculum consists of a card for each event, a set for Bible and a set for History.  This year’s Bible cards cover Genesis to Joshua, and the history cards cover the Old Testament and Ancient Egypt.  On each card is a picture for the event, a description, Scripture references if it’s in the Bible, and a list of other resources where you can learn about that event.  We have a whole shelf of wonderful books in our school closet that are listed in the resource section of the cards, so she’ll be able to go to the shelf, pull out the book listed on her card, and get lots more information about that particular event.  She’ll complete worksheets and projects throughout the week, then be tested on that event plus previous ones on Friday.  There is also a song for the History cards and a song for the Bible cards to sing and memorize throughout the year to aid in memorizing the events in chronological order.  I don’t know if I’ve explained it very well or not, but it’s a great program and I can’t wait to go through it over the next several years.

Catherine is finally in kindergarten, what she’s looked forward to for so long.  She’s going to continue what she started in preschool last year.  She’ll be moving on to the First Grade level workbook in the Veritas Press Phonics Museum program, which will give her new and more advanced primers to read as she learns new phonics rules.  She’ll also finish going through The Child’s Story Bible, as Elisabeth joins her, coloring pictures to go with the Bible stories.  To satisfy her arts and crafts itch, we’re going to use the Aesop’s Fables and Folk Tales Literature Pockets books from Evan-Moor publishers, where she’ll read and color each story, then do several crafty activities to go along with it, just for fun.  New for Catherine this year will be Math, for which she’ll go through Saxon Math Grade 1, and she’s super excited about that.  Apparently doing math makes you a big girl.  Also, she’ll use the Melody Lane music DVD curriculum that Abigail used in kindergarten, watching a short video each week on a different musical term or topic, then doing an activity worksheet to go along with it.

Both girls are also super excited to begin learning to play the piano, since we finally got Papa’s piano moved to our house.  I’m planning to start working with them as soon as we can get to a music store and buy a couple of books.  The other new factor this year is a new teacher:  Clay is going to teach Latin and Bible as our kids go through school, at least on the days he isn’t subbing.  We’ve got our schedule made out–I’ll let you know after a couple of weeks how it’s working–and we’re ready to go!  Homeschool ’10-’11, here we come!!

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