I’m homeschooling my soon-to-be 5 year old using the Classical method of education. Annnd it’s going really, really well!
I’m following the schedule and resource recommendations of A Well-Trained Mind by Jessie Wise. The book guides you completely through your child’s education- from preschool to entrance into college. We are in the “grammar stage” and while you expose your child to all subjects, Classical education puts a heavy emphasis on reading and writing during the preschool through 4th grade ages.
For each subject the book gives a list of books, activities, and resources for you to choose from. This is what I’ve chosen from the book’s list plus some extras:
We are a quarter of the way through this book and I love it. Ava and I sit next to each other on the couch with this book and some index cards and I teach her how to read! (Yes, I’m still surprised by this.) The guide is simple but effective. There’s not a lot of charts, props, or accessories; all you need is the book, blank index cards and pen. And the book tells me exactly what to say during each lesson too.
This is a colorful workbook that combines reading, writing, and phonics in a fun way. Ava loves doing the activities because honestly, it’s a little too easy for her. Level K for is for 3 and early 4 year olds. I should have went with Level A, the first grade edition that can be done at home in kindergarten.
This is another colorful workbook that Ava is enjoying. It has big pages that teach the basics of writing using the continuous-stroke alphabet. I also bought extra writing paper sold by Zaner-Bloser that should last a looong time (it’s a humongous stack).
We’ve had these books for a while now and it really is a cute set. They are small books for little hands that contain easy, short stories in them. They are meant to be the first books your child will read independently by themselves. Ava’s not reading them on her own yet but she’s getting close.
5. Goldie Blox
I’m so deficient in math, I think I actually have fear of numbers. I don’t want that for my daughter. Thankfully, her father is very good with numbers so as she progresses past addition (just kidding, subtraction) he will probably take over in teaching her. In the meantime, I’m getting her Goldie Blox and the Spinning Machine. Developed by a female engineer from Stanford University, Goldie Blox is designed to “inspire the next generation of female engineers.” Goldie Blox is a series of interactive books and construction toys that introduce concepts such as belt drives, friction, problem solving, and spatial relationships.
6. Life Lessons
Reading, writing, and engineering are great but my daughter also needs to learn real life skills and responsibilities. She is now old enough to dress herself, brush her own teeth, help clean the house, and other mundane realities of life. The problem is getting her to do them. I found an answer to that problem by a printable chore chart I found on Pinterest. Now, Ava has a small incentive (stickers) to do these things. As time goes on, I think I’ll add an allowance to her chore routine.
What about Math?
I read some where that you should only teach a child two concepts at the same time. That’s why we’re focusing heavily on reading and writing at this time and not math. My daughter knows her numbers, how to count, and the basic concept of addition but we are not doing any formal math curriculum right now. The Well-Trained Mind recommends counting in everyday life with your little one and checking out math story books from the library. The Well-Trained Mind lists 14 different math story books that are available at libraries.
Are you teaching your kindergartner at home too? What method or resources are you using?
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