Monday, June 30, 2014

My Father's World: Kindergarten, Recap and Links

           I LOVED using My Father's World for kindergarten. I have a feeling I will look back on this year as our favorite year of school.  I love that each unit allows the parent to find info on each unit from the library/computer as much or as little as they want. Every unit stretched our knowledge (yes, I learned A LOT). My son didn't really care about the horse unit, or the water unit, but I was free to move on and do what we really wanted to spend time on. Most kindergartners don't spend much time on science and focus on letters only, but my son can tell you examples of marsupials, amphibians, and reptiles! He knows dinosaur names, bird types, that the octopus doesn't have a backbone, and every animal he wants to have on his future farm. I do believe we are going to run out of science topics to talk about at this rate!
      The weekly schedule provided in the teacher's manual is now a requirement for me. I tried teaching my own units for awhile, and it was sooooo hard and time consuming to get my topics and resources organized. There's also the big issue of making sure I included the basic phonics and math my son needed on a daily basis! I felt like I used all my creative energy before I could get to the good and fun stuff. With the My Father's World curriculum, all the requirements are ready and waiting for us, so I can use my creative energy to actually come up with additional fun projects that go along with the topics. Also, the wonderful Biblical concepts that went with each unit filled the need for character training that I knew we needed even more than the ABC's!  Not to mention, my son LOVES bugs!!! We did the butterfly garden, ant hill, and even added the ladybug and praying mantis to our repertoire of bug life cycles to watch.

Here are the links based on the units:
creation intro unit
#1 and #2 -s for sun, m for moon
#3-L for Leaf
#4- A for Apple
#5- N for Nest
#6- T for Turtle
#7- U for Us
#8- D for Dinosaur
#9 -O for Octopus
#10- W for Water
#11-I for Insect
#12 - G for Goat
#13 - C for Cow
#14 - H for Horse
#15 - E for Elephant
#16-P for Penguin
#17 and #18- K for Kangaroo and Z for Zebra
#19 and #20 - R for Rock and J for Jewel
#21 - B for Butterfly
#22- F for Frog
#23- X for Fox
#24 and #26- V for Vegetable and Y for Yellow
#25- Q for Quail
With all the Biblical Concept cards for the year:

I plan on using My Father's World for first grade as well. I keep looking at all the different curriculum out there, and there is a LOT to choose from, but I keep coming back to the My Father's World option. I mean, he will learn to read next year by reading the ENTIRE Bible! Yes, it is in easy reader format, but WOW! What better way to set his foundation on the Rock than by starting with God's Word? Plus, memorizing verses from Proverbs, and continuing the fun science projects- like a wormery! I feel like the curriculum was made for us. He doesn't enjoy all the coloring, but that's little brother's job anyways:). 
My Father's World kindergarten was an amazing journey, and I can't wait to do it again in two years with my youngest. I'm also excited that my friend, and beginner homeschool-mom, will be using it with her son next year. On to the next year of adventures in homeschooling!

Monday, June 9, 2014

A Wordless/Photo-full Post: Done with kindergarten... On to first grade!

V for Vegetable and Y for Yellow

I chose to do vegetables and colors together as I figured we could have fun eating a rainbow of food..and we did! We used the worksheet where we were supposed to graph how many crayons we had of each color, and instead used it to show how many fruits and veggies we bought of each color.
 I have never bought so much produce at one time before (thank goodness for Aldi)!

 They tried everything...still doesn't like peppers, but I am proud of him for trying it!
 Of course my sweet boys wanted to share with their best buddy and neighbor. Can you tell Jonah enjoyed the blackberries earlier?

other food adventures included zucchini muffins with craisins...

 and rainbow hot dog bun pizza with fruit salad clouds.

We had a blast making "garden of colors" lapbooks. from the site.

And we did this color book idea, though I didn't take pictures:

He also learned his color words as sight words with flashcards that I made. Up to this point, I had focused on phonics and not memorizing words (except "the"). I was really surprised how fast he memorized all those weird color words. "Blue", "pink", and  "orange" do not follow the rules!

his measuring worksheet

And we made fireworks tie-dye shirts for our last day of school party:
Idea from this site:sharpies tie-dye shirt

 Perfect pocket for batman to take a ride in:

I had a horrible headache on our last day of school, so I totally forgot to get a good picture of them both in their shirts. Hopefully they wash well so I can still get one in the future:).

The Biblical concept for vegetable is "God gives me all that I need." They got that fact easily. For the yellow unit, we learned "Thank you, God, for this beautiful world."

Here Tobes is (wearing the shirt, but you can see it) with his self portrait and the words 
"Thank you,God, for this beautiful world."

The perfect way to end our year: thanking God for everything he has given us and taking care of our needs.

Just one more post to round out our year...celebrating the end of kindergarten and beginning of first grade! To be continued...

Friday, June 6, 2014

Q for Quail

   Q for Quail is pretty much a repeat of the info in N for Nest at the beginning of the year, but since my boys love birds, they were happy to talk about them again. Learning how to write the letter "Q" and that "qu" go together at the beginning of words was my biggest focus anyways. Plus, the Biblical concept for this unit was "I don't grumble or complain; I am thankful." We ALL need to remember those words DAILY!
                    As a side note, I recommend the book One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp for all moms. It has really changed my perspective on daily living for God and the need to live moment by moment with a thankful heart.

I have been making my own list of "thousand gifts" or little things I am thankful for. I encouraged my child to do the same, in his own way, when we talked about not complaining, but being thankful instead.
I wanted him to feel free to say what was on his heart, so I didn't make him write all his words. He wanted to write his brother's name and "I love you God" at the end, which just makes it all the more special.

We made "quail eggs" (pb and oats) and did our "Q" and math worksheets.

Some units, including this one, begins with a poem for you to read to your kids. I loved reading "All Things Bright and Beautiful" by Cecil Francis Alexander. I chose 4 out of the 6 verses to write on a poster and illustrate for the boys to enjoy. This is one way that shows My Father's World has Charlotte Mason's style at heart. Love it!

We had a blast making fingerprint birds on a wire. I found this idea on pinterest on this website:

Art worthy of the fridge:).

We spent a lot of time outside with our collection of birds

One fun activity with our curriculum was pretending to be birds and flapping our wings. Crows flap their wings twice a second, pigeons flap their wings three times a second, and hummingbirds flap their wings 70 times in one second! This taught time, rhythm, and caused lots of giggles. 

We read about Paul and Silas, and Paul's words:
I have learned the secret of being content no matter what happens. I am content whether I am well fed or hungry. I am content whether I have more than enough or not enough. I can do everything by the power of Christ. He gives me strength. Philippians 4:12b-13

Now, those, are words to live by.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

K is for Kangaroo and Z for Zebra

The best part of learning about the letter "K" is focusing on how to write it, and words that start with the letter "k" versus "c." English is so weird, but thankfully my son accepts the fact that "K" and "C" make the same sound. We enjoyed learning about kangaroos, and I added koalas to our books of information too (as they are my favorite). 

We learned "I am safe in God." Tobes tends toward the anxious side of things, and he really gets upset when I drop him off anywhere. I added the song "Grown-ups come back" from our favorite Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood show as we learned to trust God. 

We read the story Katy-No Pocket, , and it is now one of our favorites!

Then we moved on to "z for zebra".

I found this cool marble painting idea on this site (that I use A LOT):

I love how our painted zebras turned out for the copy work page, also from the same site listed above:

 My Tobes loves to hide, and he has always loved closing himself in boxes or other tight places and escaping. This unit focused on "I can't hide anything from God." Words he understood and never really thought of. I explained that God knows your thoughts and your heart, and he even knew Tobes before he was born! Talk about mind-exploding information for a little guy. 

We had a geography lesson looking for Australia for kangaroo unit,
 and now we found Africa for the zebra unit.
This is the globe that came with our curriculum:

And we made a poster too:

We covered kangaroo and zebra in 5 days total! Once we get determined, we can really cover a lot of material! Only three units left! (remember, we have been doing the units out of order). Next, is Q for Quail!

R is for Rock and J is for Jewel

I'm so glad we did "R for Rock" and "J for Jewel" together. The books I found overlapped with both topics, and honestly, my knowledge about both topics overlaps a lot. Thank goodness I have geologist grandparents that have given my boys A LOT of cool rocks and gems for us to look at. Too bad I'm not very good at distinguishing what rock is what, but I am hoping that my boys will have some enjoyable rock conversations with their great-grandparents soon, as they are moving to Chattanooga next week!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!

Just look at the collection we already have from my grandparents:
 We sorted them by color/size/type as best as we could:

Here is a piece of fool's gold with our lesson for "R for Rock":
"I listen and obey. I build my life on the Rock."
Of course, we talked and sang about "The wise man built his house upon the rock."
They loved this video too:

We also bought some geodes to bust open:

We learned with J for Jewel that "Jesus is more valuable than anything else." I taught them the song "Lord, you are more precious than silver..." And we talked A LOT about heaven. About the streets of gold, the gates of pearl, and all the jewels listed in Revelation that were seen by John in the New Jerusalem. 

Here is the math worksheet for this unit:

The curriculum suggested that we make necklaces of, yeah right. I have two boys. So we made crowns of jewels. That of course turned into playing Yellow King and Blue King (thankfully, I convinced them to be on the same team so they wouldn't hurt each other with those swords).

We did everything in three days! I think we left out only one worksheet (as some repeat each lesson), so I don't feel like we missed anything. We read the books "Stone Soup" and "A Cache of Jewels", and then we were ready to move on to K for Kangaroo!