Since I have written about our curriculum (all of which has been ordered and almost all of which has been shipped YAY!) and because I think it is important to have some goals to work towards, I thought I’d write a bit about what we would like to accomplish this year.
My primary focus this year is reading. I was an English literature major, my husband was a creative writing major, to say we love books in this house is a gross understatement. Brady knows all his capital and lower case letters and many of their sounds, we also found out recently (and kind of accidentally) that he LOVES rebus books so we will be searching out as many of those as we could find. I can tell he’s right on the verge of having reading “click” and I don’t think it is unreasonable to think he may be reading “Hop on Pop” type books by the holidays.
Mathematically this year is about laying foundations. I’d like him to be able to count to 100 independently, he can do it now but requires occasional prompting and tends to forget the 5s (15,25,35,etc). I’d also like him to have a more concrete grasp of what numbers really mean, right now he counts mostly by rote (although he will slow down and count objects if asked) and by the end of this year I’d like him to know not just that ten is written “10” and comes in between 9 and 11 but also what 10 of something looks. I think unifix cubes are great for this purpose and I hope he will really enjoy playing with them.
We are practicing writing letters and numbers on a daily basis, with the start of the new school year (which I think will be September 1st for us assuming we’ve received all of our materials) we’ll move from a “letter of the day” system to “letter of the week” and I’m hoping that the increased repetition/practice will really help him. I’d like him to be able to write at least his first name by the end of the school year.
Brady has a huge interest in Geography and I have decided to try really focusing on one continent per year. This year it will be North America and by the end I’d like him to know at least most of the states/provinces and their capitals. I thought it would be fun to talk about a new state/province a couple times a week, read a little about it and do a coloring sheet that we could cut out and sort of build the continent as we learn about it.
I’ve decided to talk a little about History with him this year. I ordered a DK book on World History that is supposed to be pretty interesting and I’ll read it to him and we’ll look at pictures, but I have no real goals in this area beyond just exposing him to History as a concept.
Science is mostly about play and exploration at this age, we’ll play with magnets and do simple kitchen experiments and just lay a foundation of good feelings for the harder/more tedious scientific study that will come later. (Hey, I love Science, but memorizing the periodic table is not nearly as fun as making a baking-soda-and-vinegar volcano 😉
Brady loves art and has been doing craft projects for a long time. By the end of this year I’d like him to be able to cut simple shapes and draw/paint simple figures.
Another part of our homeschool curriculum is what I like to call “Home Ec,” one day a week we do a deep clean of the house and Brady works right alongside me and we do a weekly baking project as well. This is on top of the things he does to help around the house on a daily basis (set the table, pick up his toys, put his dirty clothes in the hamper, etc) and this year we will continue working towards him being able to do his chores more independently. I actually write a cleaning day and a baking day into our homeschool plans, because I believe that teaching him life skills is at least as important as teaching him that 2+2=4.
Another life skill we’ve been working on is money math. Right now we’re working on it very informally, Brady brings me a toy and I give him a price and he hands me the correct amount of play money, but I’ve ordered a time and money workbook and I think when he’s worked his way through that we may start giving him a small allowance.
I know that he may exceed my goals in some areas and not meet them in others, he is only 3 after all, but I think having an idea of what we’re working towards will help keep us on track. What would you like your homeschooler to learn this year?