Curricula

Oh, where do I even begin with this?

What curricula you use is influenced by so many factors– budget, time, religious perspective, educational model. The sheer number of choices in any given subject area can be overwhelming. In the end, you just have to pick something and go with it.

One of the nice things about home schooling is how much flexibility we have in this area: if, for instance, we use Elemental Science this year and we all hate it, or we think it’s not substantive enough, or whatever, then we can try Noeo or Academy of Science for Kids next year.

So. For the most part I am using suggestions given in The Well-Trained Mind. After spending some time reading the curriculum boards at the WTM Forums, I’ve added in a few things here and there. This is what we are planning for Colin this year, his first grade year:

Marky will participate in the Bible, Art & Music, Physical Education and Reading above, as well as working on:
We haven’t finalized the details yet, but I am anticipating our weekly schedule  looking something like this:
  • Monday through Friday mornings: Bible (in the mornings, as a family, before Peter goes to work), Math, Spelling, Reading, Writing, Latin
  • Monday and Wednesday afternoons: Science
  • Tuesday and Thursday afternoons: History
  • Friday afternoons: Music & Art Appreciation
I just hope we have enough to fill up our time. Gosh, I hope we don’t get bored.

Heh. YES, it seems like a lot. It is a lot. Remember, though, that all the morning subjects probably won’t take more than half an hour each, and the afternoon subjects 45 minutes to an hour. So, not counting the reading we do just for fun, we’re talking about four hours a day.

In any case,  if we do get overwhelmed, I’ll drop Latin. He doesn’t have to learn it in first grade! If we are still overwhelmed, I can dial back the intensity on music & art, or drop one of the phys ed commitments. Flexibility, remember?

That’s what I keep telling myself, anyhow.

Edited to add: No plan of battle survives first contact with the enemy, right? If you are a veteran home school mom cackling at my naivete and enthusiasm right now, please feel free to tell me in the comments. My feelings won’t be hurt. We’re learning as we go, here, and I welcome input.

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About recoveringsociopath

Bibliophile. Cinephile. Cheery curmudgeon. Crunchy con. Erstwhile graduate student. Religious nut. I honestly believe Jesus actually rose from the dead. View all posts by recoveringsociopath

4 responses to “Curricula

  • Jeni

    I love lists like this, especially for this age range, because this year will be our first year homeschooling. My W will be almost-5 when we start, and is at the K level for some things and 1st grade for some things. I’m still not firm in my curriculum list, and I really need to work on that since we’ll start in about 5 weeks!! Yikes.

  • Melissa

    My only comment, now that I am on my 3rd first grader, is don’t be surprised or sad if the subjects take *less* time than you expect. Fill up that time with reading aloud and letting them explore. They do need ‘white space’ to digest all they’ve learned. And I have suggestions, should you need them, of how to entertain Little Miss during all this, should you need them. But the list looks great! How fun!!! P.S. I love your explanation of WHY you are homeschooling. ‘Because I like my kids and being around them’ is a great reason!

  • Melissa

    oops. didn’t proof read. or have enough coffee.

  • inordinarytime

    I’m far from a seasoned home school parent, but your list seems fine to me. You have to start somewhere. My sister has been teaching kindergarten for 11 years, and she always modifies her lesson plans.

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