At the time of writing this we’re nine weeks in to the school year. And we’re about three weeks behind in most of our subjects.
Things started out amazingly well. If you don’t know, my kindergartener is three and half years old, we did preschool at home starting at age two due to her own leading and we just moved her up to the next level of her subjects in August when she asked to start Kindergarten early. So we’re not terribly stressed about being behind. She wouldn’t be allowed to start public school here until September 2020 anyway, so even if we did nothing else this year we would still be way ahead of her peers.
Because she is so young, I don’t push very much. If she wants to do kindergarten that day we do and the past few weeks she mostly hasn’t. The first three weeks of so of the new year she woke up and asked to do school every single morning, even on weekends. We didn’t miss a day for fifteen days straight.
And then the arguing started. We would do everything except math and then she would throw tantrums to not have to do math. We did that for a few days and then we tried moving math to the beginning of the day. That worked for a day or two and then we just didn’t end up doing any school at all because she refused to do math and I didn’t let her do other things until we did that first. We were both unhappy so we just left it as a vacation for a week.
When we tried again she was no less stubborn so we have mostly been picking a subject and working on that as long as she has the attention span and desire to do so and we’re making some progress. The biggest issue with this has been that by the time we make it to music, for example, she has forgotten her notes again and we spend the first ten minutes or so relearning them.
As for a more specific update:
Readalouds: We are right on schedule with our poetry book and have also read the first 40 or so pages of What Your Kindergartner Needs to Know which has all been poems so far. We have also read 6 chapter books. Five of which were on our list and one was a requested addition from my daughter. We’re currently reading another additional book at her request.
Art: We are three weeks behind in this. My daughter loves the painting and doesn’t much care about the art appreciation aspects of the curriculum.
Handwriting: This is one of the subjects we’re pretty far ahead in. The beginning pages were far too simple for her. We should be on page 34 if we were on the same scheduled day as everything else, but she’s on page 56.
History: We are the same three weeks behind in this as everything else. She enjoys the readaloud portion, but doesn’t have much patience for the coloring pages. I usually let her draw or explore the map for the chapter.
Geography: This is my daughter’s favorite subject. She has found a love of maps and loves to see globes and maps anywhere she can find them. If I pulled these books out today she would probably finish them all in one go. I might need to look for more geography resources for her soon.
Phonics and Creative Writing: We are about three weeks behind in all of these. She tolerates the explode the code, but hates having to form her letters. She is not enjoying her Plaid phonics either at this time and we may look for something else, but money is not really available to purchase anything else right now. I think this one might just be far too easy for her. The four squares are a favorite of hers and she lets her sass come out in them on the regular.
Science: Same three weeks behind here too. She likes these books a lot. We got her to cut and lick squash which is a huge deal in our house. She also loves her lifesize body picture that she adds body parts to each week.
Music: This was going great. She immediately loved the first book because it has stickers and she picked everything up way faster than I did. She even figured out how to play Mary had a Little Lamb and Hot Cross Buns in the first week using letters written on her keyboard and on the note sheet. Then we didn’t really do music for a couple weeks and we’re relearning the names and counts for whole, half, and quarter note.
Chess: She picked this up instantly too. I had coloring sheets and was hoping she would learn a few of the names for pieces on the first lesson, but she got them all after one time through and then asked to play so we started learning how the pieces move and she loves it. She doesn’t have strategy yet or know the difference between winning and losing, but she loves to play anyway.
Scissor Skills: This is another favorite. She likes to have extra practice in this so we do printables of fun holiday themed pages.
Money: We haven’t started this yet, it will be an end of year project. The last few months of kindergarten.
Math: This is the biggest issue we have. According to my plans we should have been 30 lessons in to the Horizons Math Grade 1 curriculum. We are actually on lesson 107 of the Kindergarten curriculum. She is amazing at math and we started the kindergarten level in her preschool year of homeschool. But we never finished so it feels like we’re playing major catch up. However, she’s actually ahead for her age so I just let her take it at her speed. We just started subtraction this week and she can add double digit numbers on her own as long as she doesn’t have to carry over yet. I am crazy proud of her. So we just keep plugging along.
Overall, not too bad. We’re making progress in everything, though slower than planned and she doesn’t hate school yet so I must be doing something right.
Maybe we’ll catch up before my next check in, but maybe we won’t. And she’s so little it doesn’t quite matter yet. She loves to learn and she knows how to ask questions to find the answers that matter to her. That and her absolute love of reading everything and anything she can get her hands on our my most important goals in teaching her so I’m calling our first couple of months a success.
How is your homeschool year going?