Our home education journey
Moving on to what's inside Lizzie's learning drawers, we try to do something from the Phonics, Writing & Maths drawers daily, and loop through the other drawers. We also loop through the activities in the drawers to keep things interesting.
We always start out by practicing the sounds she has already learnt and then focusing on a new sound using the phonics toolkit, then play one of the activities that comes with the kit, and finish up with practicing the high-frequency sight words. (Hopefully this toolkit will be available in our shop shortly). After using the toolkit, we do some reading practice either using the Moffat Girls 'I Can Read' booklets, or one of the readers which I switch out regularly. We don't often use the Fairy-tale Phonics book, I've left it in for now, but if it's still not being used I'll probably remove it for next term.
I'm really pleased with how the writing drawer has come on. She has pretty much finished our home-made Star Wars handwriting boards so I'm working on a new handwriting practice book for the shop which will be added to this drawer shortly. We are also loving the addition of the wooden letter boards from Treasures from Jennifer. I've kept in the story cards, although should probably swap them out for another topic but have also added this wipe clean story starters book, as we are beginning to work on written composition.
This term I've thinned down the contents of our maths drawer a lot, this is Lizzie's favourite subject at the moment, but she had definite preferences as to what she wants to do. We currently have two maths courses in here, the Star Wars maths skills (she LOVES this book, it's a treat) and the Heinemann Year 1 books. I've also added in the Moffat Girls Telling the Time pack to stretch her knowledge in this area. We use the wipe clean cards a couple of times a week to practice her teen numbers. At present we don't use my own maths toolkit very much, so I need to put some more work into that and get the challenge cards complete to see if she'll enjoy it more then... so it's still in fine tuning.
Our Grammar drawer is probably the one that is not pulling it's weight. While I love the Good and the Beautiful Curriculum, we also seem to get stuck on this drawer, it seems to break our rhythm and neither of us particularly enjoy it. I'm leaving it as is for now, but suspect this drawer will be recycled into another subject for next term.
This term we are learning to recognise some constellations and revisiting the phases of the moon in more depth. This will be combined with the planetarium she received for Christmas. We always read through the RSPB magazine as well for ideas of crafts and activities we can do in the garden. Lizzie loves the How Things Grow book, it's a science packed fun sticker book (we completed the Nature one earlier in the year and she's excited to start this new one.) and the Get Out! book we found in a charity shop but it's full of seasonal nature themed activities and puzzles.
Lizzie loves her Spanish lessons, and I love how easy they are, we simply read the stories (or even better listen to the included digital audiobook), after just the first reading of the book Lizzie has grasped new Spanish vocabulary :O it's that simple. There's also a fun activity book and flashcards for new words. This is sold as a monthly subscription box with a new book sent each month... they are AMAZING!
For History we're just beginning to develop a concept of time ready to begin more in depth history study in the future. We'll be reading the books 'When I was Young' and 'The Pebble in my Pocket' - we also read through the English Heritage Children's Magazines and visit many of their sites.
Our Geography drawer has remained pretty much unchanged, we are behind in the earth tales book so we'll be pushing to get that finished this term. Lizzie loves receiving her Letters from Afar in the post and that always causes impromptu geography study and research. Lizzie is now able to place the continents on the world and has learnt some of their names so we will continue with learning the continents for map drill. The game Landmark Lotto should have been cycled out, but Lizzie insisted we keep it in longer.
We fell behind with our sign language as Lizzie began to find some of the hand positions difficult, so last term we focused mainly on making the different hand shapes. We'll begin this term by recapping the Greetings & Manners then moving onto learning some family signs. We use the painting flashcards for some short, informal picture study and the music flashcards for learning about the different music notes.
This term we'll be finishing off the Jesus Storybook Bible reading to move onto a different version of the bible next year. We don't read the devotions daily, but read one whenever we loop to the drawer. Lizzie is also working on memorising the 'Our Father', we have no materials in here for other religions at the moment, as we will usually cover that through the playroom.
This term we're focusing on Manners, so we will be reading 'Mind Your Manners' and 'Do Unto Otters' (essential for any otter-addict like Lizzie). We will also be reading happy which is another beautiful book about feelings. 'I Miss You' is a child's book about death, which Lizzie has been asking lots of questions about lately and has been getting very hung up about, so it seemed a good time to look into this book and discuss it together.