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Kindergarten

Our Kindergarten Curricula

Here is a list of many of our resources for Kindergarten and how we did it.

Reading

Resources:

  • Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons
  • The Road to Reading by T.H. MacDonald
  • Bob Books Sets 1 & 2
  • Modern Curriculum Press Phonics Level A
  • Modern Curriculum Press readers from workbook
  • Miscellaneous books


How we did it:

We used Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons until about lesson 75, then stopped because Stiggy was unable to make the transition from the orthography to regular print. We did one MCP workbook page each day. We then used:

The Road to Reading by T.H. MacDonald, which worked well. Each week we focused on a sound or phonics rule. We began the lesson by reviewing a few previous sounds, then Stiggy would read some words written on the wipe board (about 20-30). I would give him a dictation sentence, which he ‘wrote’ out using magnetic letters. He would then do a workbook page. Some days, instead of reading a list of words, he would read a small passage I had written out. One day a week he would choose a reader.

We also played phonics and rhyming games. We used Scrabble tiles and Boggle.

By the end of the year, we were just using story books, games, and the phonics workbook as well as the magnetic alphabet.

Handwriting

Resources;

For HWT, we only used the workbook. Stiggy enjoys writing, so my aim was merely to teach him the correct way to form the letters.

Math

We used the Living Math approach. We played lots of games, like shop. We did lots of incidental math in every day life.

Resources:

  • Monopoly Junior
  • Card games
  • Pattern blocks
  • Counters (marbles, Hot Wheels, buttons, M&M’s)
  • Abacus
  • Bean bags
  • Dominoes
  • A few internet printouts
  • Circle Time Poetry: Math

Supplemental stories:

  • Double the Ducks
  • Alfie’s Numbers by Shirley Hughes
  • Anno’s Counting Book
  • One Hundred Hungry Ants
  • My Missing Mittens

How we did it:

We explored math in many different ways. When we began, my goal was for Stiggy to learn to count to 100. This came about easily though use of a bean bag. We would toss it back and forth and count to 100. He also learned to county by 10’s this way.

Later in the year, we approached math by concepts. I used Circle Time Poetry: Math for this, which is divided up by concepts such as pair, shapes, symmetry, graphing, etc. Each week we would have a poem, activities, and a story.

We also kept a math notebook (links in sidebar) to document learning. Stiggy would provide a narration for a concept, then draw a picture to go along with it.


Read Alouds

I read to Stiggy a lot. We read at breakfast, lunch, during rest times, before bed, and times in between. We read poetry 2 or 3 days a week during snack time.

Resources:

  • Lots of audio books

Fairy Tales:

  • Rapunzel and Other Magic Fairy Tales
  • My First Nursery Stories by Tony Ross
  • Jack and the Beanstalk by Edith Nesbit
  • Hansel and Gretel by Morpurgo, Michael
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by Joan Aiken
  • The Tales of Hans Christian Andersen
  • Various books from the library

Nursery Rhymes/ Poetry:

  • Lavender’s Blue
  • Side by Side: Poems to Read Together
  • My Favourite Nursery Rhymes by Tony Ross
  • Things I like by Shirley Hughes
  • Where the Sidewalk Ends
  • The Random House Book of Poetry
  • Songs and Verse by Roald Dahl
  • A Child’s Garden of Verses
  • Now We Are Six
  • When We Were Very Young
  • Dragon Poems by John Foster

Story books:

We read masses of story books this year; it would be impossible to list them all (partly because I didn’t keep track of them all…). Here are just a few of our favourites:

  • The Frances series
  • The Paddington Bear series
  • The Babar series
  • Barrett, Judi:

Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs

  • Brown, Marcia:

Stone Soup

  • Brown, Margaret W.:

Home for a Bunny

  • Browne, Eileen:

Handa’s Surprise

Handa’s Hen

  • Burton, Virginia Lee:

The Little House

Mike Mulligan and His Steam Shovel

  • DiCamillo, Kate:

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane

  • Freeman, Don:

Corduroy

A Pocket for Corduroy

  • Grahame, Kenneth:

The Wind in the Willows (abridged)

The Reluctant Dragon

  • Leaf, Munro:

The Story of Ferdinand

  • Rosen, Michael:

We’re Going on a Bear Hunt

  • Slobodkina, Esphyr:

Caps for Sale

  • Shannon, David:

A Bad Case of Stripes

  • White, E.B.:

Charlotte’s Web

  • Williams, Margery:

The Velveteen Rabbit

Favourite Authors (in no particular order):

  • Shirley Hughes
  • Julia Donaldson
  • Oliver Jeffers
  • Roald Dahl
  • Lynley Dodd
  • Dr. Seuss
  • Eric Carle
  • Arnold Lobel
  • Beatrix Potter
  • Maurice Sendak
  • John Burningham
  • Helen Cooper (The Pumpkin Soup trilogy)
  • Shel Silverstein

Narration

This was done quite informally. I would ask Stiggy to ‘tell me about’ his day, or as part of his nature reading log, he would tell me what the stories were about. We also used a narration cube. I had things like ‘describe our…, tell me something you learned today…tell me a story about…,’ etc. Our narration activities usually took the form of discussions. We’d discuss outings, places, people, situations, objects, anything.

Gardening/ Nature

Resources:

  • Roots, Shoots, Buckets, and Boots
  • I Love Dirt
  • Green Thumbs
  • Small Wonders: Nature Education for Young Children
  • Little Hands Nature Book
  • Ranger Rick magazine

Stories:

  • The Tiny Seed
  • Jack’s Garden and How to Make Things Grow
  • Harvey The Gardener
  • From Seed to Plant
  • A Tree is Nice
  • Roxaboxen
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar
  • The Secret Garden (retelling)

How we did it:

I didn’t really have a method for this. We read lots of books, spent lots of time outside, sowed seeds, went to gardening centres, looked at seed catalogues…it was just something we did, it was a part of life.

Stiggy also kept a gardening journal. We had a page for his gardening and nature books where he would help me record the title, author and type (fiction or non). He would then tell me what the book was about.

Science

We didn’t do a lot with science this year. We did have a leaf unit. https://whimsyway.wordpress.com/2008/10/23/we-begin-nature-study-leaves/

Science was more in the way of nature study and gardening. Any other science was purely interest-based.

Art

Resources:

  • Young at Art

How we did it:

Stiggy wasn’t very interested in art until I began following the advice in Young at Art. The idea is simple: provide your child with simple, high-quality art supplies and let them do as they wish. Do not place value judgement on what they do (‘Beautiful…that looks lovely…very nice.’) Instead, you should observe and comment (‘I see you’ve used lots of green here…that’s a very big tree!’). Art is divided into 5 categories: paper, paint, drawing, sculpture, and printing and one medium should be focused on at each ‘lesson.’

We spent several weeks having a colour of the week. I would go through our supplies, gather up all the materials in the chosen colour and obtain a book that focuses on that colour. Each day that week I would get out the tray with the materials, turn on some classical music and let Stiggy do as he pleased. We would also try to find objects in our surroundings of that colour. We sometimes ate fruits in the colour, too.

Colour stories:

  • Red is Best
  • Harold and the Purple Crayon
  • Blueberries for Sal
  • Little Blue and Little Yellow (for green)
  • The Big Orange Splot

Once the colours were finished, we learned how to mix colours. Stiggy learned about primary and secondary colours.

Art was mostly about free exploration this year.

Stiggy also attended pottery painting sessions once a month.

Music

Resources:

  • Classics for Children
  • Myleene’s Music for Mothers
  • Return to Pooh Corner
  • Radio

How we did it:

This was not an area of study, per se, it was more about exposure. We don’t listen to a lot of music in our house, but when we do, it’s classical, as a matter of preference.

PE

Resources:

  • Yoga Kids: Silly to Calm

 

How we did it:

Stiggy attended a weekly PE session in our area for several months.

We used the yoga DVD about once a week.

Stiggy spent lots of time outdoors running, cycling, and climbing. He’s quite an active child, so this wasn’t an area I particularly focused on.

Family Life

Stiggy was expected to take part in chores. He helped with laundry, cooking, baking, vacuuming, bed making, sheet changing, lawn mowing, tidying, setting and clearing the table, and other miscellaneous jobs. This has become a habit for him, a way of life.

Other

Stiggy enjoyed baking and other little handicrafts.

Road and fire safety and learning information such as address and phone number were also part of our curriculum.

Play

Hugely important in our house. Stiggy had lots of time for free play and exploration. He had plenty of time to be bored, which often produces some of his most imaginative play. The toys in our house help facilitate this play (Lego, blocks, play kitchen, Lincoln Logs, puzzles, games, K’Nex, Mega Sketcher, outdoor toys such as chalk, kite, water gun, balls, bike, etc)

Other Resources:

  • The Well-Trained Mind
  • The Ultimate Book of Homeschooling Ideas
  • The Eentsy, Weentsy Spider Fingerplays and Action Rhymes
  • How to Talk so Kids Will Listen and Listen so Kids Will Talk
  • Endangered Minds
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