It’s here. My nephew starts school later this week back in Texas, so we’re planning our first day of “big first grade” for next week. We’ll kick off the week with an end of summer pool party with our MOPS group, and the next day we’ll hit the books.
I concluded last year with a review of what kindergarten looked like for an autistic/gifted kid. I’m still a little overwhelmed at how much we covered in one year. We began slowly but quickly picked up speed. This year, my son is begging to start and get back to it, so we’re just diving in. If we have problems, we’ll pull back on a few subjects, but in general, we’re ready to get going.
So what are we planning for this year?
- Math: Math-U-See, supplemented by Math Mammoth
Math-U-See is a mastery curriculum. In other words, they focus on just one thing at a time. My son is so interested in math and how the world fits together that we’ve been supplementing with smaller math topics from Math Mammoth – things like beginning geometry and how to read a calendar.
- Reading: Hewitt Homeschooling.
We received this from the Homeschool Review Crew and loved it so much that we’ll probably complete every page of this book before we move on.
- History: This is covered by Classical Conversations, but we’re going to supplement with the Make-a-State lapbooks from Home School Adventure Co.
- Science: This is also covered by Classical Conversations, and we’re going to supplement with videos from Magic School Bus. Yes, I put a lot of work into this one…not really. We have so many science toys in the house that we’re just going to take first grade to explore and dive a little deeper with the CC subjects with books from the library.
- Latin: We started Prima Latina from Memoria Press back in June and set it down for the summer. We’re ready to pick it back up and aim for one completed lesson per week. This program teaches not only Latin, but also English grammar through learning the origins of some of our English words.
- Greek: I just reviewed Hey Andrew! Teach Me Some Greek! a few weeks ago. We’re going to alternate days with Latin. The more I’ve learned about child development, the more I’ve become convinced that kids really should learn languages while their young, not waiting until high school. We’re not aiming for mastery at this age, just exposure.
- Handwriting: Classical Conversations has a handwriting program that uses the memory work as the words/sentences students need to copy. We’re using the orange book that starts with cursive letters this year. Last year we worked on printing, but I’ve since read a lot about the benefits of starting with cursive. Fine motor skills are a challenge for my son, and I’m willing to try this method. We’ll see if it works…This might be the first of our curriculum to be switched out.
- Spelling: We’re keeping it simple and instead of a full program, I’m going to print out the spelling lists from SuperTeacherWorksheets.
- Bible: I hate listing this last, but we do this last in our homeschool time so that we can really dwell on it without worrying about everything else we have to cover. Instead of a full curriculum, we’re going to work through a book called Step Into the Bible.
I am overwhelmed just looking at all this. We live in one of the most regulated states in our nation for homeschooling. We’re also required to teach geography, safety (including fire safety), health, PE, music, and art. Every year. Geography, music, and art are covered in Classical Conversations, but I haven’t figured out yet how we’re going to cover safety, health, or PE (though I’ve been told that regular time at a playground counts for PE and helping make dinner counts for health).
It’s a lot, but at first grade, we only spend about 15 minutes per subject, so our school day still takes an hour and a half a day. Click below for more ideas for curriculum for the year!