This year, I’ll have my second first-grader!
Last year Scout was in public kindergarten, though if she’d been born just a few weeks later, she’d have been in Pre-K. Her interactions with the other students made it clear she was the youngest in her class. Given the circumstances of her moving mid year, getting a brand new family, and all the other big changes in her life, we were blessed to have a kindergarten teacher whose primary focus was helping Scout feel comfortable, rather than worrying too much about whether or not she was on target academically.
What early childhood education should be:
“In this time of extraordinary pressure, educational and social, perhaps a mothers first duty to her children is to secure for them a quiet and growing time, a full six years of passive receptive life, the waking part of it for the most part spent out in the fresh air.”
~ Charlotte Mason
I want Scout to experience the joy of childhood, of imagination, of watching bugs in the yard, making clover chains, watching geese swim at the lake, playing dolls in a living room fort on a rainy day. These are the things of childhood, and hers has not included as many of these things as it should have. Her childhood — going in and out of foster care since before the age of one, and spending more than half her life in foster homes — has not been easy. I can’t change that, but I can give her a real childhood from this point on.
Our First Grade plans:
I’m basing Scout’s first grade year primarily on Heart of Dakota‘s “Little Hearts for His Glory,” the same curriculum I used for Kathryn’s kindergarten year. It’s intended for an age range of 5-7 years old. As always, I’ll tweak extensively. (Note: this post contains affiliate links; see disclosure page.)
Informal nature study (including Barb’s Outdoor Challenges)
Poetry, art projects, music appreciation
Children’s choir (at church)
Read-alouds from AO’s Year 0:
Peter Rabbit and Other Favorites – Beatrix Potter
Adventures of Reddy Fox – Thornton Burgess
The Little House – Virginia Burton
Robert McCloskey books
The Church Mice and others in the series by Graham Oakley
Mother Goose stories
Ox Cart Man and others by Beverly Cooney
Ferdinand the Bull – Munro Leaf
Ping – Marjorie Flack
We’ll be doing far more read-alouds than just those listed above. Kathryn learned to read (and began building her extensive vocabulary) from listening to me read good books; I could read ’til my larynx goes on strike, but I’ll never be able to catch Scout and Jem up on the amount of reading Kathryn had by this age. That’s okay, though; we’ll go from here, and read as many good books as we can.
I know this year will be challenging as far as figuring out how to incorporate these brand new little people in our homeschool, but I’m so glad to have the opportunity to do this with them.