2010-2011 Curriculum Plan

I posted over the summer a little bit on this topic, but I have the *final* plan ready so I want to post it here for others to see, comment, ask questions, etc. I also like to have it all in one place to check in on from time to time. This will be long, so here we go...

Our general approach is a blend of Montessori and Charlotte Mason. You can read more about my thoughts on either by clicking above to visit my Montessori & Homeschool page. We are fairly pure Montessorians under the age of 5-6 and blend progressively more towards Charlotte Mason as the kids get older. This year one of my biggest goals is to present a more balanced curriculum that does not neglect the humanities as I have done in the past. Last year and the year before I felt very accomplished if I did Math and Language and patted myself on the back when we added Science and Geography. Everything else was whipped topping.

I know the saying is gravy, but I like whipped topping better... I digress.

Our plans for this year are much more ambitious and will require a much higher level of organization and commitment to focusing on nothing but school for a portion of each day. Everything will be joint lessons, except Math and Language. Aidan will have follow up work in Science, Geography & History, Caleb will not.

Math- Caleb (4.5)
Montessori Approach
Numbers 0-100 (Review)
Place Value and the Decimal System (This is where we were at the time of the fire)
Advanced Counting, 1000 chain
Introduction to Addition & Subtraction

Math- Aidan (7)
Tim will be teaching using a Montessori approach
Advance Counting (Review), 1000 chain
Static Operations (Review)
Using the Bead Frame
Dynamic Operations
Basic Facts
Introduction to Polynomials

Language- Caleb
Pink, Blue, Green Series
Writing with Moveable Alphabet
Beginning Readers
Sight Words

Language- Aidan
Grammer Topics: Punctuation, Types of Words (cont.), Capitalization
Weekly Letter Writing (with topic tie ins)
Oral Reading Fluency
Advanced Sight Words
Oral Response to Literature

Geography & Culture
Living Books
Continent Boxes (Brand new, courtesy of my mom and dad- THANK YOU!)
Each month will have a focus topic and only those materials will be on the shelf.
World Geography- Landforms & Water (2 months total)
Continent Study (1 month/continent)
US Geography (will do last)

Family History Timeline
Living Books
Montessori Great Lessons (Tim)
Tie in with Geography when able

Montessori materials & cardwork
Nature Study
Living Books
Monthly Focus Areas:
Weather & the Water Cycle
Ecosystems & Biomes (2 short months)
Static Electricity & Magnetism
Chemical Reactions (Tim)

Basic introduction to the language
Usborne books
Spanish cartoons on local TV

Charlotte Mason Picture Study
Child Size Masterpieces- 1 piece per week

We are planning some new things this year with family hymn sing (as soon as I order a hymnal for us) and weekly worship together at the end of our school week. Both boys will also be in choir at church assuming it is available (we don't have a new church yet but the one we are thinking we will go with has choirs for each age group, including Orph instruments). Still going to hold off on formal piano lessons other than basic theory and introductions from me.

Practical Life
Kylee will be my main student in this area as she will be learning basic self and house care this year. The boys will continue with updated chore and kitchen responsibilities. Aidan and Caleb will also be continuing to learn hand sewing this year using the sewing sequence from Montessori Services.

Family Worship (See Music)
Memory Verses
Church Year Celebrations
Some Godly Play lessons (at home)
Sunday School

Most subjects will only be taught once or twice per week. This year we are experimenting with a 4 day school week and leaving the 5th day open for field trips, errands, and appointments. Our school morning will be 9-11 for everyone and Aidan will have an additional half of an hour to an hour in the afternoon for advanced projects, research, and reading time. The boys are also each allotted 30 minutes of computer time per day (during free time).


Heather said...

Sounds wonderful! I was always very "traditional" with my older kids and (because I was working there at the time) my older daughter was blessed to attend a Christian preschool. She was very behind in gross and fine motor skills and her teacher was very into the Montessori method. She grew by leaps and bounds that year and caught up and then some! Her confidence grew as well and I was an absolute fan of Montessori by then! I look forward to following your school year to get ideas of more ways to incorporate this at home with my new little ones. I hope you have a great year!

lilpeasinmypodfromgod said...

Whew Heidi, that is ambitious you crazy woman!

Lisa said...

Wow! I wish I was so organized and ready for school. Still no idea when we will start but I like the time slot set aside for school during the day. We will likely benefit from such a schedule. Thanks for posting!

Melissa + Tiffany @ Home Grown Families said...

Um, I wasn't introduced to Polynomials until I was in college...
You are ambitious. But, I am definitely more of an un-schooler, I think. That's what I'm discovering as I get into this... who knows. I think I have lost my mind :)
Thanks so much for linking up!

Heidi said...

Tiffany- you were probably introduced to them before then, you just weren't introduced to what they were called! Montessori math is very different from what most people are used to and makes those types of concepts into hands on math. All of our math is taught with things first, numbers later including advanced concepts like squaring, polynomials, geometry, etc. It really does make a huge difference in understanding and mastery of concepts that SOUND like they should way beyond a 2nd grader!