homeschool kindergarten: fall round-up & things we like in the homeschool room

We've wrapped up our first semester of homeschool kindergarten, so I thought I'd share our curriculum, schedule & a few things that we've enjoyed in the homeschool room . . . if you're interested in that sort of thing! :)

On a side note, we are still waiting for baby boy to arrive!!

1. Curriculum we used:
  • Long Story Short for Bible reading. We just follow the reading schedule, which is what she's also doing in Sunday School.
  • Sonlight Core A for reading (borrowed from a friend!). We loved all the readers and can't believe all we read. The history readers were interesting too.
  • Horizons Workbook for Math.  The way this curriculum builds on concepts has really worked for us.
  • Modern Curriculum Press Phonics Level A. For learning letter sounds and word patterns. I also just picked up some Abeka Phonics flashcards at a thrift store (for $3.50!) that we're using to introduce word patterns.
  • Handwriting without Tears.  We're just about through this workbook. It's been fine, but I think any good handwriting book would do. Some of the letter and number shapes are strange to me.
  • Handwriting without Tears workbook
Horizons math and counting bears


2. The Routine
On Sunday nights, I tried to sit down and plan out two weeks of homeschool at a time. I created a simple planner that I filled in. Our mornings usually went from about 9:30-11 and included the following (or a variation depending on the day):
  • Bible Story/Memory Verse/Song (we did about one memory verse every two week or built up to a longer one)
  • Letter Writing Practice
  • Handwriting/Copywork (sometimes a Bible verse, sometimes a sentence made from the letter she was practicing)
  • Reading
  • Phonics (1-2 worksheets)
  • Math (1-2 worksheets)
  • History reading
  • Later in the day: read-alouds/history reading
Tuesdays: Art with friends
Thursdays: Science with friends
Fridays: Co-op (she had art, farm class, PE, and sign language this semester)

We planned on incorporating some Spanish, and did a little, but not much.

science journaling with friends

3. Stuff we like for the homeschool room:
spiral handwriting notebook from
  • Beanbag Chair

  • Electric Pencil Sharpener. 
  • Washi Tape. It's easy on the walls and looks cute too. You can find washi tape with the scrapbooking paper at Michael's or order online. Etsy sellers sell nice varieties.

  • Small lined whiteboard.We use this one way more than the bigger one on the wall, especially for copywork. I got this one at a thrift store, but I think you can find them at Target. I've seen them in the dollar bin. 

  • This is one of our solutions to what to do with the three-year-old while the kindergartener is working. You do have to deal with the older wanting to play too, so it's not an everyday solution. There is so much jammed into this site with lots of prizes the kids can "buy" with their tickets. It also has tons of printable coloring pages. If you're interested in trying the site, let me know and I can send you a referral to try the first month for free! (She's actually on the new Rosetta Stone reading site in this picture.) 
  • Calendar. Sarah enjoys changing out the numbers. And oh, there's some Spanish!

  • Divided bookshelf helps keep books organized!
  • Books on tape. Sarah has been listening to books on tape a lot during her rest time. She really enjoys Boxcar Children and The Magic Treehouse series. We get them from the library.

  • Wish we had: a globe. We pull out maps a lot and keep a flat one on the wall, but I think it's hard to get a feel for where things are spatially on a flat surface. 

In summary, we survived. Actually, more than survived. As challenging as some of the moments were, we enjoyed the experience a lot and learned so much. God was faithful! 

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