Saturday, December 31, 2011

Homeschool Update - Preschool

During the Christmas break, I've been spending some time thinking about our homeschool plans and what I need to change next semester.  There are things we started out doing that just weren't working, things we added in along the way, and other things I want to add.  Here are my thoughts on Julia, age 4:
(Next I will post about what Lucy, age 6, is doing including a review of Beyond Little Hearts For His Glory.)

We started out planning to use Learn Your Letters Learn To Serve and The Reading Lesson.

Although I really like the ideas and thoughts behind Learn Your Letters Learn To Serve, (Click here to view more details) I think I just really need things spelled out for me on a daily basis.  I have a hard time looking at a weeks worth of activities and deciding what we are going to do, what to leave out, and when to fit it all in.  *I* am definitely the problem here, the curriculum is great and is chock full of fun ideas.  It will stay on my shelf as fun reference book to use when we need extra activities.  To be brutally honest, we only ever did letter "A" and part of "B".  Plenty of other learning occurred around here, it just wasn't from this book.

The Reading Lesson: Teach Your Child to Read in 20 Easy Lessons
I will post a more complete review of this program eventually.  Julia enjoys doing a couple pages every now and then and is learning to read!  I am planning to use this on a more regular basis next semester.  So far we are only at the beginning of the book, which is fine for her age.  She is asking to do more now though.  I like the simplicity of the book and the fact that we can take it at our own pace.

My First Book Of Cutting (Kumon Workbooks)
I picked this book up several months ago as something fun for Julia.  She enjoys doing a page or two at a time, and it serves as something to keep her occupied while Lucy is busy with math or handwriting.  I've seen her cutting skills improve just over the couple of months we've used this.  I have a pasting book that we will use next semester too.

Shirley's Prepackaged Crafts
Click the link above for my full review.  Julia really likes her box of crafts and asks to do a craft often.  These are right on her level.  We alternate between a craft or her cutting workbook while Lucy is busy.  I have the January box already and am looking forward to letting her get started with it!

Little Hands To Heaven
This is similar to Learn Your Letters Learn To Serve, but I think it will work better for me because of the layout.  I'm planing to start this with Julia in a couple of weeks.  We are not loving the devotional book in Lucy's curriculum, so I think having the exposure to simple Bible stories on a regular basis again will be good for all of the girls.  The basic math introduction, letter learning, and other activities will be a good fit for her now also.

Fat Brain Toys Inchimals
I bought these this fall and haven't pulled them out to use yet.  Julia loves to pretend and these look like she will have a lot of fun with them.  We have plenty of other resources that we can pull out as she shows interest too.  (A fully stocked art cupboard, millions of books to read, preschool idea books and plenty more.)

Julia listens to ALL of our read aloud books: Lucy's learn to read books, storytime books, and history books.  I wouldn't dare read Lucy a lesson without Julia!  She is almost always first to answer the comprehension questions too.  Any art projects or Bible study, she often chooses to do with us.  I am planning to add in Spanish and some science that she will participate in as well.  With the above books I think we will have a good balance of family learning and work that is right on her level.

Okay, what do you think?  Do you have a preschooler?  How is it going?


  1. We are home preschooling and about to start home kindergarten. My DD will be 3 on Valentines, and my DS just turned 4. We are starting Kindergarten with him, at his insistence, because he is bored with preschool. I love your reviews of the curriculum. Thanks!

  2. My girls love their Inchimals! We're also using Shirley's Prepackaged Crafts, just finished The Reading Lesson, have used LHTH and will use it again, and use Kumon workbooks. Great minds think alike! ;)

  3. I don't know if it's just foreign books or what, but my friend who's in London posted that her friend's first grade nephwer was working on an English book from Kumon and it had some not so age appropriate things!Here's what it said:
    Then he showed us one page of his KUMON English drill skit that he is now working on, which surprisingly reads as below:

    "Maybe he has a girlfriend!
    Maybe she`s really cute!
    Oh, no. I feel sick.
    Is this ... love?"

  4. That Bald Chick - Lucy started K at age 4 also, she was very ready for it. :)

    Kristin - I think I found Shirley's Prepackaged Crafts from your blog. :)

    Mrs Gorbe - eeek! That would definitely NOT make me happy. We'll keep an eye out for stuff like that. Thanks.