Monday, August 16, 2010

Addie's First Day of School

Today is the first day of school in our house!

Kristi and I have been getting really excited (and I think we are spurring each other on with the excitement) about teaching our girls (and Kristi's little Marky).

Teaching began for us last week as we began seriously potty training.  I thought I was going to live the rest of my life with a towel in one hand and carpet cleaner in the other.  But half way through Tuesday, Addie went running to the potty while saying, "Wet!", sat down and went in the potty (it didn't bother me at all that she left her under pants on)!  Since then we have had numerous successes with potty training and her little sticker chart is filling up with stickers with each successful potty we have. 

In June, I purchased two K3 curriculum books through ABeka books.  One is Letters and Sounds and the other is Numbers and Skills.  Addie won't turn 3 until February, but because she already knows her alphabets, sounds, and numbers, we decided to just go right into the K3 books.  We will also continue using the Your Baby Can Read curriculum, and other workbooks that I have picked up.

For our Bible studies, I am using the lessons and printables from this website that Kristi put me onto.  It provides you with coloring pages, games, puzzles, activities, crafts, memory verses, and songs to go along with every Bible account.  I am so excited about this.  We are going to begin with Creation and work our way from there. It looks like we will be spending about two weeks in each Bible account.  In December, we will take a chronological detour and learn the Christmas account. 

Below is the print out of our lesson plans for this week.  It took about two hours of planning to come up with this, and that does not include the 15 min. in the evening to make sure that I have all of the supplies that I need for the following day.

This week will also be a learning experience for me in the sense of learning what works in our schedule and what needs to change, how many breaks she needs and how much of our day will be used for schooling and how much will just be toddler play.  Because our schedule will be more structured for school time than it was during the summer, I will also have to figure out how to add my daily responsibilities into the schedule.

Below is the part of our schedule/time frame for Addie's school time and a brief explanation of what each involves.  The time frames are not set in stone.  If they take less time than I have allotted, that is no problem.  We will just move on to the next activity.   
     
30 minutes- Addie activity This activity is just to give her something to do while I am having breakfast.  She is not an early eater so I have adjusted our schedule to give her a later breakfast.  Her activity may involve a coloring page, a puzzle (she is really into puzzles right now), or a game.  

30 minutes- Addie breakfast and YBCR Your Baby Can Read is a video curriculum that teaches babies to read by teaching them to recognize sight words.  We will continue with this program for a while.       

15 minutes- Dress Addie

15 minutes- Bible lesson  As mentioned above

15 minutes- Letters and Sounds We are only doing one of the two sides of the workbook pages each day.  It involves reviewing the letters and their sounds and then gluing items to the page or coloring.

15 minutes- Numbers and Skills Each workbook page only has one side to complete. It involves number recognition, counting, and coloring.

30 minutes- Addie alone playtime As was discussed in this post.
       
30 minutes- Addie Computer time We use the Leap Frog computer that was mentioned at the bottom of this post and a couple of computer games that my cousin gave us for the family computer which reinforce reading and math skills.
  
30 minutes- Snack and video  I am still up in the air on whether or not this video will be learning related or just plain old fun.  I may alternate it day by day.  After all, she is still a baby to me.

10 minutes- Flash cards  I have a million and one flashcards! Okay, maybe not that many but it sure feels like it some days.  I have pulled out the ones relating to the letters and numbers that we will be learning this week.

20 minutes- Worksheet  I have many other workbooks in addition to the actual curriculum books we bought.  I go through and choose pages that either reinforce what we are learning or teach something I want her to learn. For example, the worksheets for this week will review her shapes.

30 minutes- Activity  The second activity is along the lines of play-doh, finger painting (thank you, Titi Elsie for the bathtub finger paints!), playing outside, chalk on the sidewalk, etc.  I have collected several books with a variety of activities so that I can change up the activities regularly and have new ideas as she gets older.

As you start gearing up for Back to School whether your kids go to a public/private/Christian school or stay home with you, I hope you get excited with all of the new beginning feelings that accompany this time of year.

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