"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;

I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly."

John 10:10

Friday, May 28, 2010

School Year in Review: 2009-2010

This picture was from the first day of school this past fall. Here is a rundown of the curriculum we've used for Madeline's first grade year...

Math: I was disappointed at the beginning of the year how much I needed to review with Madeline to get her back up to math speed. Because of this, from now on we will continue with math year round. That will hopefully alleviate some of the waste of review time and keep those math facts fresh. We started the year with Saxon Math 1, and are currently about 2/3 of the way through Saxon 2. Saxon is not the most snazzy or exciting curriculum, but it is thorough. Madeline is understanding math thus far, so I'm sticking with Saxon.

Reading: Madeline is a voracious reader. I can't keep enough books in the house to keep her happy. She has flown through the American Girl books, Magic Tree House books, A to Z Mysteries, Caddie Woodlawn, Harriet the Spy, many Beverly Clearly books, as well as numerous others. She loves to read about the pioneer days. Her reading level is well beyond her age, so it is difficult to fnd books that will challenge her but not be too intense for a seven year old girl. I am wading through having an established book list for her for next year. For our official school time, I occasionally have her read aloud from the third McGuffey Reader.

Writing: We started the year off with Copywork for Little Girls from the Queen homeschool. I didn't feel like it was a good fit for us, so changed midway through the year. Now we are using Writing With Ease level 1 by Susan Wise Bauer, and I love it. It uses great children's literature with a combination of narration and copywork. WWE seems to be what I wanted in my head, all laid out for me.

Grammar: We made it through the first part of First Language Lessons 1/2 by Jessie Wise. It has been a gentle introduction to grammar, parts of speech, and word usage. The lessons are short and enjoyable.
Spelling: We breezed through Spelling Workout A by Modern Curriculum Press, and are now most of the way through Spelling Workout B. Madeline enjoys this, is mostly independent work for her, and is doing well with it. I have been a little concerned it is not as systematic as she needs, but am sticking with it.

History: We made it through Story of the World book one by Susan Wise Bauer! I have learned so much about the ancient world this year. It is fascinating. We read the book, she gives me a narration, do the map work, and read the corresponding Usborne History of the World section. Depending on the day, we may or may not do additional reading with library books, color a page, or do an Internet activity to reinforce the concepts. I have discovered that I am not a crafty, activity person. Oh well. I still feel like she is learning and having a fun time listening to the stories.

Science: We have worked through Usborne books about earth science and weather topics. I don't think we did a very good job with science this year, and have just started the Apologia's Exploring Creation with Flying Creatures of the Fifth Day. I love that thus far.

Classical Conversations: Classical Conversations has been such a blessing for us. I have been amazed at how Madeline has memorized so much information this past year. It has not been a struggle to memorize, and when we have encountered the material during our studies she can immediately cross reference the Classical Conversations memory work with the new information. The science experiments, presentations, and fine arts activities have been incredibly valuable. Our whole family has loved getting to know the other Classical Conversations family and looks forward to our Tuesdays together.

Bible: We have been working through Leading Little Ones to God by Marian Schoolland. This has gone fairly well with everyone. The book helps me engage the girls in learning about the basic ideas of what it means to be a Christian. We did not make it through the whole book, so will continue with it until we finish.

Piano: I have completely failed at this. We did not do much piano at all this year, and vow to not let that happen again. It has been at the bottom of my list. Next year I will not let piano slide.

Overall, this has been a delightful year. I consider it an honor to be able to teach Madeline and learn along side her.

No comments: