Math: Tally Marks  

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This year (kindergarten) we are using RightStart Mathematics Level A Lessons For Home Educators. And some of the beginning lessons is learning to make tally marks.
This is a perfect addition to our 100 days of school sticks in our MFW curriculum!

French Fry Forgiveness  

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This is a small chapter book series called "Alex Books" that I bought for my niece way back before I had children. I loved it and tucked it away in the back of my mind that one day I want my kids to read this series. Well, here I am. Kinda. My kids still aren't quite old enough but I wanted to log it on my blog so I really won't forget.

The titles alone are catchy and makes you want to read them!
French Fry Forgiveness
Mint Cookie Miracles
Crocodile Meatloaf
Grapefruit Basket Upset
Sally Scarecrow Solution
Hot Chocolate Friendship
Chocolate Chips and Trumpet Tricks
Cherry Cola Champions
T-Bone Trouble

And guess what? In case you haven't figured it out... they have a MORAL to each story!What fun!

My Father's World Kindergarten Curriculum  

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My Father’s World: Kindergarten

We absolutely loved this Kindergarten curriculum! It is very simple, fun, hands-on and easy-to-use. There are 26 units and each unit covers one letter of the alphabet and corresponding Bible, Character Development, Art, Math, Creative Thinking, Reading, Phonics and Science lessons.

We don't do every thing in every unit, but more use it as a springboard for our weekly curriculum. We will usually spent 20-45 minutes 3-4 days per week on the lessons and supplement with a variety of other great resources. Some of the supplements are Handwriting Without Tears, Intro to Classical Music, and RightStart Math.
My Father's World is a Bible-based curriculum with a mix of Classical Education and Charlotte Mason approach.

Reading Great Books Leads to Great Field Trips!  

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It all started when we read a Curious George book.

George and the Man with a Yellow hat go to a Candy Store to buy some chocolate. And let's just say, George gets into trouble (as usual). But, he ends up saving the day (as usual).
After reading this book I just had to make a phone call and two days later we found ourselves here.

Even though it was just the 4 of us (3 were 4 years old and younger) they still gave us the complete tour!  We watched a 15 minute video about cocoa beans, how they grow and how they become chocolate. We also heard about how the Sanders family began their candy shop in Detroit, Mi.
Then we got a free sample! Yum!
The took us to the factory area were we watched ladies in hair nets and red aprons lining up rows and rows and rows of chocolate!
They did not allow us to take pictures at this point  : (
It was facinating to see!
Then that took us to the candy shop!

These pictures just don't do it justice.

We bought chocolate coverd pretzels. The kids got ones with sprinkles and I got one that had caramel swirl under the chocolate.
{ahem, I could not get a full shot of the caramel swirl pretzel ... I couldn't wait. I had to take a bite before I could get it home to take a picture of it.}
We got some other chocolatey treats but again, I was too slow with the camera.
What fun! The kids had a blast.

Great Idea! Dulpo Spelling and Story Telling.  

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This is a great Idea! We are not quite there yet but soon. Soon. I will do this with our set of Dulpos!

Print your own MONEY!  

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Check out this site to print your own money in different denominations. Yes it is legal. It is play money!

If I had a Million Dollars Wishlist  

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Did you know that has a wishlist that you can share with others?
One of my all time pet peeves is when someone buys something that they don't have the money to buy and it ends up being something you don't want!
That is why's wishlist is PERFECT!

Working out the Workbox System  

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If you homeschool and you check out other homeschool blogs I know you have heard of Sue Patrick's Workbox System.
Well, we plan to implement it in some form the fall.... well maybe now.
It is meant to be used for school work but I will be starting the kids with it for assigned activities during the day. I have had enough of the kids wandering around the house making unnecessary messes simply because THEY NEED DIRECTION! (ahem... my fault... guilty.. busted).
The idea goes some thing like this (get the book for a much more accurate way to get started).

You get a shelf or rack of some sort and put out 6- 12 plastic shoe boxes on them. Mom fills the box with one item for the child to work on. Then when he has completed that he moves on to the next box. And so on. Homeschool mom's RAVE about how this system has brought much order to their day. Not to mention that it gets the kids more independent because they know what comes next.

So I am in the process of making a master list of activities the kids can do. I am breaking it down to different categories for example under Music, I will have a list like this to choose from: Crank up the radio and dance!, play musical instruments, play a video game that teaches music or instruments (I have links and cd roms), color to classical music, read a book that is music related and so on. Then we have a games section where I list all of the games in the closet.
The only reason I am categorizing them and making a master list is because I know myself. I will choose the activities they like best instead of MAKING them try something new. They may just like it if they try it! This will also force me to use everything we have.
Here is a great link to see how others have done it.
I am sure you will be seeing more on our set up. I am waiting for hubby to decide on a color printer before I jump in! (hurry up hun!)

Pre K Learning  

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In Our Preschool stage of learning I was chomping at the bit to get going with 'school.' Then I decided that children learn best by repetition. So I just did a million different things to get him to practice the letter sounds and he naturally learned more in the meantime.

Here are some of the things we did that worked with us to teach letter sounds and other rules of beginning to learn to read:

* I taught him to use the computer mouse and he played (a great/free resource that progressivly teaches kids to read)
* I purchased the Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD's and watched them frequently (the others are great too)
* Every chance I got we would practice letter sounds.
* We watched Rock n Learn Alphabet and Alphabet Circus (from the Library) he LOVED these!!! And still does. These can be annoying to the adults but my kids LOVE them and LEARN from them!
* would even go to YouTube and do a search for ABC sounds, ABC songs, and one thing would lead to the next.
* we tinkered with the free curriculum at some people love it but I think I got bored with it before he did.
* I taught him upper and lower case letters by making a flip alphabet line. Fold a construction paper in half and cut two slits half way up so you can put 3 letters on a page. Write caps on top and flip up and write lower case on the underneath side. If that doesn't make sense let me know and I can add a picture.

At this stage it is just not necessary to spend money on a curriculum. There are so many other resources out there you can use at little or no cost. Have fun with it!

Favorite Children’s Books  

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I am starting a list of some of the books our children enjoy the most. I am always looking for great books to read to my little ones. And I love to get recommendations. I am doing this in hopes to shorten your journey as you search out great books to develop a love for reading in your children.

Tonight we read:


THE BEAR THAT HEARD CRYING by Natalie Kinsey-Warnock and Helen Kinsey

What a delightful book! I love that it is a true story too. It is about a little girl who gets lost in the woods. A creature from the wild keeps her company as she is lost. Days later, a neighbor has a dream about where she will be found. And sure enough they go to that spot and there she is. The adults think for sure she is gone for good cause they see bear tracks alongside her footprints. But the story ends up a very happy one!
This is a Christian book. In the beginning of the story 'Mama' is reading the bible to the family on Sunday morning under the shade of a tree. The book also hints that the dream that was given was from the Lord and that God sent a wild beast to protect and comfort this little girl. The illustrations perfectly capture the suspense of the story line and depict beautifully the celebration once Sarah is found! I choked up the two times I have read it already!
The kids were gripped with suspension! This is the type of book that draws children into the joy of reading.

My Father’s World Kindergarten - BADGES  

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This blog roll thing has got me off my duff so last night I started making out Badges and added them to the appropriate subjects in the file folders. I made them out of foam rectangles I got from the dollar store. I was going to cut them all out but just decided to keep it simple and draw in them and punch holes in two corners so we can string them and wear them. We will have a fun collection in the end to play with and to remember the sayings on them. These are just a few… I have to get more at the dollar store. Remember, I am making sets of two as I KNOW my 3 year old WILL want her own copy!



Just Couldn’t Wait any Longer  

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After completing Get Ready for the Code, Get Set for the Code and Go for the Code, we just had to jump right in to Handwriting without Tears.

The curriculum suggests you buy some of the extras to make it more interactive and fun for the child. Well, money is tight so I made up our own for much less than I would have paid.

One of the things they want you to buy is a Chalk/slate board. The kind that reminds me of the one Laura and Mary Ingalls had when they went to school.

007649[1]Instead, I went to Michael’s Craft Store and they have various sizes for under $5! This is a great tool for learning to write letters! Here are the steps we follow. Mom writes the letter first in the proper way (starting on the left from the top down and so on). Then the child is given a moist sponge and they erase the letter in the same/proper way you would write it. Then the child writes the letter again over the wet area. Then he erases it again. It is all about repetition! And they love it!                                                                                                                          

Instead, I went to Michael’s Craft Store and they have various sizes for under $5! This is a great tool for learning to write letters! Here are the steps we follow. Mom writes the letter first in the proper way (starting on the left from the top down and so on). Then the child is given a moist sponge and they erase the letter in the same/proper way you would write it. Then the child writes the letter again over the wet area. Then he erases it again. It is all about repetition! And they love it!                                                                                                                          


Another thing we really saved $$ on was the wooden pieces. Instead, I made the shapes out of foam sheets. These are great cause you can make every letter of the alphabet with these as well as a very special character….MAT MAN!


Starting My Father's World Kindergarten Curriculum ~ Fall 2010  

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Well, I have my curriculum and I am in the process of organizing what I have and what we will be doing. I plan to use a modified version of the workbox system. This is roughly how I will use it. Even before I heard about Sue Patrick's Workbox System,

I had a daily schedule (in pictures) all printed out and laminated so the kids could see what was coming up next and get some idea of what the day would look like. So I figure I will do it for 'school' subjects and activities too! The only difference is I will have a physical place with these things set out for them to do.

I am also trying to figure out in my brain how and when to incorporate the other curriculums I am adding to MFW K. (RightStart Math, Handwriting Without Tears, and Intro to Classical Music).

If any of you have any tips on lining it up and nailing it down... let me know. This is my weak area. In my mind, for some reason I have a hard time completing the thoughts. The lie I believe is that I need to see it, do it, try it, feel it, see how it goes, or any other excuse for me to NOT plan ahead. All that is called is lack of discipline. So there. I said it. Now you know. Keep me accountable.

So what am I doing now?
I have the file folders all in order.
I have placed the worksheets in each file.
I have collected a couple extra resouces that we will be using with MFW K. (more on that another day)
I have purchased foam squares to make the weekly badges.
I have tweeked the grid I have with the daily plans (this will be an on-going tweeking).

If you do MFW, what have you done to prepare so far?

My Father's World Blog Roll!  

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MFW Blog Roll