What do I really need to start HSing Kindergarten right now?

Discussion in 'Alternative Learning' started by Redterra, Jan 8, 2011.

  1. Redterra

    Redterra Just me, doing my best

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    It looks like we will be taking him out of public school before the end of the year - really, as soon as I can get my act together to start something at home. I've looked at some curricula - I'd love to have something that had some daily lessons sort of planned out so I could lean on something as I find my way, but as I look at what's included, I feel like I could figure this out easy enough on my own? Simple phonics, basic numbers/word problems, science, history, and social studies discussions like we already have around here - what else is there to it? I don't want to oversimplify, but I want to know that I'm doing what might be comparable to a good public school experience.

    I hope I don't sound like I'm asking the same question repeatedly - this just feels like such a huge decision and I wish somebody would plop something wonderful in front of me and say "just do this" every day and it'll be great!

    As far as our style/philosophy - I want to start out having a disciplined schedule to train him that we're serious about school and that although things will be better having school at home, there will still be work involved and he has to take it as seriously as he would if he were back in class. As we find our way I'm sure things will relax a bit.

    Wow - this is really happening! (yikes)
  2. Momof6

    Momof6 Amity's Focus Member

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    For reading, (meaning his continued success as he gets older) make sure he is solid on Phonemic Awareness. It is different from Phonics, but a part of.

    You can get an idea by snagging this book: Sounds In Action.

    Then.....when you move into Phonics instruction....research. Ask a kindergarten teacher (you can ask me! I specialized in early ed and taught pre-k and k...I'm on facebook, if you are) Make sure you don't get any old thing called "phonics". I've seen even experienced teachers who are great at upper elementary get moved down to the little ones and totally mess up the sounds. (for example saying "buh" for the letter B....no no no!!!)

    Family Math is great. Children need to be able to manipulate numbers and truly understand the numbers rather than rote memorization. (some of that is needed later on...BUT understanding and manipulating math is the key) This is the way Japan has done it forever and we are finally opening our eyes to it. (at least in my local district) There are some great math programs out there that public schools use that may work for you as you get on in your homeschooling. (ones that are more along these lines than the old standby Saxon...while good....it stops short of current research)

    I stopped teaching after last year.....but hope to stay current on what is best for kids developmentally.

    Oh.....go to NAEYC website and look at their bookstore. Most everything will be developmentally appropriate and some could be used by a homeschooling family. (NAEYC is National Association for the Education of Young Children)

    Read outloud a LOT. Bob Books are good for when you are past Phonemic Awareness. Maybe look into subscribing to Ladybug magazine to read with your child.

    Pre-K and Kindergarten are the BEST!!!! I hope to return when my own children are a bit older and not so much in need of me here at home.

    When we homeschooled 2 of ours, I did a lot of my own from my own professional training, but I also bought Oak Meadow and used a lot of that.

    I'm so happy for you!! You can totally do it!
    Michelle
  3. Redterra

    Redterra Just me, doing my best

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    Thanks Michelle! I'll look into those resources.
    They have been doing very little math in his kindergarten class so far - well - hardly anything other than counting. The standard right now is that he be able to count to 30 but he's been able to count to 100 backwards and forwards for a good while. That's one of our issues b/c Levi is really drawn to math and he's not being at all challenged in that area.
  4. emmas~clogs

    emmas~clogs meanie mommy ;)

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    My little ones have been more interested in math than phonics/ reading also. My 6yo is not really doing phonics/reading lessons much at all. I second Family Math, also Games for Math by Peggy Kaye. Curriculums haven't worked for us at this age at all...
  5. 3boysnagrl

    3boysnagrl Amity's Focus Member

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    A library card is really all that you NEED! :) You can find a gazillion book lists for reading aloud all over the internet. Five in a Row has some great ones. So does Sonlight.

    If you have a budget, I would use that $$ for fun math related games and activities. Manipulatives. And then some sciency stuff - butterfly kits, magnets, etc.

    The books mentioned above were GREAT! Ruth Beechick has some good, gentle books - and anything by Peggy Kaye is a must have.

    Read and play games and have fun. That is how they learn. Read good fiction, but boys tend to be interested in non-fiction at this age... so the library is a GREAT place for things like DK books about whatever is of interest to him (and could 'count' as social studies or science depending on the book).

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