Friday, February 5, 2010

Preschool Corner

I'm not going to lie, I'm really irked with myself for how poorly we are doing with our homeschooling. It's not for lack of planning, it's simply a lack of time. Between Doctors, Dance and Dentist's I don't see how we can manage to get ANYTHING done! So, I'm completely frustrated with the whole thing, and I'm sure this is normal, but since we are expecting a New Addition in August I've decided it's time I went and purchased a "real curriculum" in hopes of cutting out some of the planning time and using that for work time. I would love for you guys to give me your opinions of Saxon Math K if you have used it or know of friends who have used it.

So, we had a great Groundhogs Day activities planned, but since I fell down the stairs, that was junked instead for doctors appointments. I hope to use some of the poems (Robert Louis Stevenson's My Shadow) for a Shadow unit.

Instead, I  have decided to take a break from our Phonics program, Math activities and Science, and focus on what the Kindergarten Class up the road uses for their "literature" curriculum. It's the Mary Caulkin's Writing Seminar...which basically believes that every child, no matter abilities can "write" or tell a story.

Kaelyn and I spent the day discussing Books, and what makes a book. Today, we discussed the "Cover" of a book, what you find there (pictures and letters...these are her answers). I explained that the Letters make up words which create a Title. Her vocab words for this week are Title, Cover, Author, and Pre-writting. These are all terms that she will be introduced to in her Kindergarten class (should we choose to send her). She is going to be making an alphabet book using Dr. Seuss' ABC Book and My First Alphabet  Book as models. She brainstormed the title today, and it's all 26 letters "because that's what my story is about". We will be working on rough drafts of the title page and "publishing" it as well. I hope to have her use a sight word that starts with that pages letter....and start working the sight words with her prior to introducing the books. It's a backwards approach but the other way wasn't working.

Anna, my sweet 1 year old, sat through the WHOLE lesson on books and what makes them up (I'll be making a book for them to keep and use as a reference showing what makes a book, along with vocab words). She will be making (with lots of help from me and her sister because Kaelyn asked to help) a Colors book. Kaelyn "helped" choose the title Rainbow Book, so that it can be all about colors. I hope to have Anna work on one color the ENTIRE week while we work on a single letter each day.

I'll post pictures as soon as I have them, but I'm going to be perfectly honest....this is all what I did today. So if you'd like to see what other, more organized preschooling mama's are up to....go here!


Debbie said...

I haven't used Saxon Math K. I like Saxon Math for older years. I know that our curriculum (Christian Liberty Press) starts using MCP math, which is a math I love. Only problem with MCP they will not sell their materials to individuals only to groups.

We all go through times of feeling overwhelmed about what we are or are not getting done in homeschool. Hang in there! I love your approach on introducing books and reading!

Anonymous said...

my oldest goes to catholic school and uses it. she is in thrid grade now!

personally at age 3 i would just teach her about patterns, geometic shapes, simple math concepts using Math in Minutes book.

but if your looking for a curriculum then i would forgo the Saxon at age 3 since its more memorizing math facts and not making it fun and go with Singapore math which makes it fun to learn.

Mrs Adept said...

Have you heard about Singapore Early Bird Maths? It's a great preschool program. We use it. It has a lot of hands on stuff. There are teacher notes on each page.

I also find that "life" messes with our homeschooling too.

Brandie said...

Thanks for your support guys! I'll have to look further into Singapore. I was hoping to find a "challenging" math since she's doing a really great job with adding/subtracting/patterns etc. I was hoping that a curriculum of ANY kind would help make our days more organized. I'll also look at the Math in Minutes books...haven't heard of those.

MommaMindy said...

Thanks for dropping by my homeschooling blog. I appreciate your time. From what you wrote, it sounds like you're actually doing really well for a pre-school level. You have a lot of great ambition and it is contagious. I used Abeka math because it easily introduces the new concept in a box at the top of the page, repeats stuff from the day before, week before, etc., and has daily speed drills.

When it gets right down to it, all curriculums work if YOU like them. Never saw one yet that forgot to teach carrying, or a letter of the alphabet. :) My goal in the early years is to make sure they always LOVE learning. That is crucial. When they lose that love and joy, all our ambition and great curriculums won't really matter until it is restored.


Anonymous said...

wow she is great at math if she is already doing that stuff then go for saxon math! i'm sorry i didn't realize she was past the early bird math of singapore.

another great thing and cheaper is just get kingergarten math workbooks to try some stuff out

Brandie said...

We did the placement test, and I think I will go ahead an get the singapore math for this summer, make sure our bases are covered. If we like it, we might stick with it, but it's definately a more budget friendly option. Especially if we end up not liking it. If only I could get her to enjoy "reading" like I do and keep her love of math/science.

Brandie said...

MommaMindy- We feel the same way, we want the girls to LOVE learning and see life as a place to learn at all times.

Raising a Happy Child said...

I think you are doing great. Considering that your daughter is just 3, she will probably do just fine without a curriculum. I just use library books, games and Kumon books for math with my 3 year old.

Jana said...

I have Saxon and Singapore EB. But my son really loves the hands on of Saxon. We will continue with both. Singapore for the mental math, and Saxon to solidify it.

I just found your page through educating crumpet. I am glad she mentioned you in her latest post. I look forward to watching your journey.