I have a thing for books. You may have noticed. Because of this fact, our curriculum is chock full of books and so is our schoolroom. Acutally brimming over might be a better description. Ok, ok, a preposterous plethora of books is probably most perfect.
Anyhoo… this year I’m trying something new (and by new I mean sorta new) for our school room and trying a new curriculum (and by new I mean that I’ve tried it two years, but I still don’t have the hang of it).
First… Curriculum for 2011-2012:
Math- Teaching Textbooks Algebra II (HB), 7 (The Boy), and 5 (Princess); Right Start Math B & C (Faith and Cutie Pie)
Science- Apologia Chemistry (HB) & Astronomy (all the other kids)
Grammar- First Language Lessons (all kids except HB) Levels 1-3 and the new middle school one as soon as it is released
Writing- Writing with Ease (all kids except HB) Levels 1-4, Institute for Excellence in Writing (HB)
Handwriting- Handwriting without Tears (Faith and Cutie Pie); A Reason to Write (The Boy and Princess)
Spelling- All About Spelling (full on for Faith and Cutie Pie; refresher for Princess and The Boy) Levels 1-?
Greek- Alphabetarian and Hupogrammon
Vocabulary- Wordly Wise (HB, The Boy and Princess), Greek & Latin Roots (HB)
History, Reading, Geography- Tapestry of Grace Year 3 (the 1800s). We have done two years of TOG, but I’m still getting my bearings. I chose it because I want a curriculum that the whole family can do. I’m not in love with it yet. I have a pretty strong feeling that I’ll end up making my own curriculum by mashing together Sonlight books I like, TOG books and Mystery of History. I think I’ll call it Mindy Mash. Stay posted. We will also be notebooking.
Read Aloud- my own schedule of books combining TOG Y3 and my favorite Sonlight books (hey! Mindy’s Mash primer!)
Did that even interest you at all? Well, the next part has visuals. Much more fun. ;-)
Second … Schoolroom: I’m tweaking our system and therefore our room a bit (yes, it’s a kitchen). I decided to have the binders we use every day out where I can see and grab them, the kids can grab them, they can be ungrabbed just as quickly, and I can know instantly whose books are missing and whose aren’t. So… on the counters I now have stackable trays with the kids binders grouped (science, notebooking, writing, and lesson plans). Yes, each kid has a color. They use it as often as I can possible arrange (cups, binders, toothbrushes, pens, etc). If I could have them only wear their color, I’d do it. Seriously.
I really like the workbox system idea, but we don’t have the space for five work boxes and I’m not sure the system would really work over all for us. The aspect I love is the know-where-your-kids-are-in-their-school-day-at-a-glance (and confirmation they have done their work). Basically, I would like to have a way of quickly poking my head in the schoolroom and knowing how many subjects a child has finished (yes, yes, I could walk over to the counter and look in their lesson plan book … not appealing). Have any ideas on how I can do the at-a-glance gig?
I love the whiteboard you see scribbles on, but don’t use it as much as I thought I would. If I could move the shelves, I think that would prompt me to use it more often (interpretation: I could reach it easier… though, due to my height, I don’t use the upper section much; it’s HB’s zone). Think I should put the books elsewhere? Back in the box? Don’t even suggest the cabinets. They’re full. Stuffed with curriculum I’m not using but refuse to get rid of and other very, very important homeschooling books.
The break down of those books: all four levels of TOG Year 3 (if you are unfamiliar: lower grammar [Faith & Cutie Pie], upper grammar [Princess], dialectic [The Boy], rhetoric [HB]), divided by units. The one with the Post-It notes are the books I stupidly checked out from the library until February. I heart books. Really. I’m pretty sure I’ve over bought for this year (again). My goal is to make note of the books I really want to keep and to sell the rest at the end of the year. A girl can hope. First step is recognizing you have a problem, right?
The other side of the room has the two school computers and their desks (one terrible and one precious) and my lovely garage sale find and Costco craft.
Though, now looking at this blog post, I think I will hang the United States map AND the world map instead of alternating as necessary. I also need to go through those boxes on the floor at the right to see what cool historical maps we have for the year. Fun! (I have no idea why that plank is there too. Who lives in this house?)
Our school room works for us (especially the curtain I can close so no one can see the mess) and so do all these delicious books! (Ok, in looking at these photos, it doesn’t seem there are books, books, everywhere… but it sure feels like it!)
How’s your room and your book collection, I mean, curriculum for the year shaping up?