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Year 5 Snapshot
If you’ve been following this series of posts, we’ve now caught up to real time. I wrote about the first four years retroactively because I started this blog just before we began our fifth year of homeschooling.
Since I can’t summarize a year that hasn’t happened yet, this snapshot will be a look at how our year has started so far. Later this school year I hope to post about lessons learned during Year 5… but I have to learn them first, so stay tuned.
This year I’m homeschooling a fourth grader and a first grader while our toddler makes it her duty to provide the distractions. Despite an uneasy feeling that I’ve over-scheduled us, things are going pretty well so far.
As the kids age, though, the dynamics change which I’ve noticed more this year than in the past. It’s been a bit of a wild ride dealing with tween anger management issues, first grade frustrations and terrible-two tantrums all within the span of five minutes.
But there’s beauty in the mess, too. I’m so grateful to have a front row seat as my kids mature and develop relationships with friends and each other.
Also, over the summer I made it a priority to pre-plan and prepare as much as possible ahead of time. I’m SO glad I did that! It’s been my goal to keep my school prep time during the school year under an hour per week and I’m almost, sorta, kinda getting there.
Here are the resources we’re using this year.
Year 5 Curriculum Choices – Fourth Grade
- Bible & Character: AWANA memory verses, RightNow Media Bible studies, personal and family Bible reading and Hero Tales Vol. 1 & 2
- Math: Math-U-See (MUS) Delta & Epsilon and Kahn Academy math
- Reading: Silent reading (30+ min./day) plus family read-alouds and audiobooks
- Spelling: All About Spelling Level 4
- Grammar: Junior Analytical Grammar and Kahn Academy grammar
- Writing: Institute for Excellence in Writing (IEW) Student Writing Intensive Level A
- Handwriting: IEW work plus copywork (usually from poetry books or AWANA verses)
- Science: AIG God’s Design for the Physical World (Machines & Motion and Inventions & Technology)
- History & Geography: Story of the World (SotW) Vol. 2: The Middle Ages (with SotW Activity Book Vol. 2)
- Health & Safety: DIY informal unit studies
- Logic: Math Analogies Book 2 plus mazes and puzzle books
Year 5 Curriculum Choices – First Grade
As usual we do Bible, read-alouds, science, history/geography and health/safety as a family. In addition to the work we do together, our first grader is working on:
- Math: Math-U-See (MUS) Beta and Kahn Academy math
- Reading: Silent reading (20+ min./day) plus family read-alouds and audiobooks
- Spelling: All About Spelling Level 1
- Writing & Handwriting: Copywork (AWANA verses or poetry), creative writing pages from Quick-n-Fun Writing Activities Just for Young Learners and writing prompts from 123homeschool4me.com
- Logic: Lollipop Logic Vol. 3 plus mazes and puzzle books
Year 5 Curricula Choices – Toddler (age 2)
I haven’t prepared any formal work for our littlest one yet. Half the time she’s content to play and work on puzzles, stickers and coloring books alongside her brothers. It’s the other 50% of the time I still need to figure out!
Here are a few of the educational DVD’s we’ve used for her so far:
- Leapfrog Letter Factory (Check out my review of this DVD here)
- 100 Singalong Songs for Kids
- Scholastic’s Treasury of 100 Storybook Classics
Of course, however, the main thing on her to-do list is playing while running around half-dressed!
Other Fun Stuff
Our local co-op has been wonderful so far and has adjusted their schedule to allow for more breaks and field trips which has been a blessing already. My oldest is taking LEGO WeDo 2.0 (again, since he loved it so much last year) plus Gym, Art and a culture/geography class called Trip Around the World. My younger son is taking Gym, Art, a Unit Study class and LEGO Simple Machines. Our youngest plays in the nursery while I teach two classes of LEGO WeDo 2.0.
We’ve continued again with Homeschool Open Gym at our local park district and have taken a break from gymnastics to allow time for swimming lessons instead. The boys also attend AWANA once a week and my oldest has now started playing percussion in our local homeschool band. Both boys are also continuing the Bastien Piano Basics series for piano lessons at home and are both participating in our co-op’s mixed-age choir.
Field trips are a big part of our school year and our favorite so far has been indoor rock climbing at Vertical Endeavors, a climbing gym near us that offers discount days for homeschoolers. Our next big outing, to go along with our upcoming study of knights and castles, will be a dinner and tournament at Medieval Times.
Check back later to see Our Curriculum Choices – Year 6!
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