Monday, March 14, 2016

The Letter A

Beginning in January we started through the alphabet in our homeschooling journey.  Now for reading we are using the curriculum, All About Reading and it introduces phonograms in it's own order and pacing.  We are not focusing on the letters of the alphabet from a learning to read or write standpoint but as a springboard for a spiral curriculum to learn all about God's wonderful world and all the things the people He created have learned, discovered, invented, thought, created, etc.  

We also have a separate math curriculum but going through the alphabet this way allows us to focus on various things/read literature about things that start with the letter.  Then as the kids get older we can go more in depth on say . . . amphibians or whatever it is but they are getting an introduction and scaffolding for their learning now.  

So above are some of my "key words" for our Letter A Unit to spark ideas.  

Our library has an amazing Educational Resource Center that we like to visit and do things pertaining to the unit as well as just play, explore and learn through choosing manipulatives to play with on our own.  

We used letter tiles to spell out some A words and David chose on his own to make a sentence complete with punctuation and spaces between the words.  

We also explored all of the continents that start with the letter A.

Until I was going through photos I had forgotten that we actually began our Letter A unit before New Year's as we were getting a bit restless and ready to be back into some routine.  

Then we rang in the new year with Grandma and Grandad.  

We have been to Alaska several times so Alaska came up at various times in this unit.  We also have a large map of the United States as decor in our dining room so the kids look at it a lot during meals and ask different things and learn along the way. 

This Alaska Christmas ornament was made by my brother for me!

We also ate some "A" foods including Apple Jacks, Asian pears for the first time, antipasto and alphabet soup

We read A LOT of alphabet books during these two weeks including this one that was a favorite and continues to be.  

The notes you can see underneath the book are from Sarah at Frugal Fun 4 Boys and have been so helpful to me as we navigate learning respect and discipline, etc.  in our home.  I highly recommend checking out her blog and particularly the series I linked to.  

We are always including home ec classes in our homeschool!  No matter what occupation you end up with, everyone needs clean clothes.  :) 

This girl really likes to help with the laundry and is a pretty good folder too.  :) 

One of the kids snapped a picture of mom!  

We also made alphabet soup for the first time during this unit!  

We also did various activities from our Letter A pinterest board some of the favorites being an alphabet soup bath, domino addition game and an alphabet relay.  

In addition we did a rhythm of the day each day we did our "triangle time" (in schools they usually call it circle time when all the kids and teacher sit in a circle on the rug and sing, talk about calendar, etc. but since there are three of us, we call it "triangle time")  :)  Rhythm of the day is something I used to do in my music classroom.  Basically the students read a rhythm and learn to clap it, say it, count it and then play it on an instrument.  It's lots of fun and my kids LOVE it and I love that even at two Cora is learning to read music.  We put various A words to our rhythms and used instruments like agogo bells and comparing and contrasting agogo bells and tick tock blocks.

One day was ALL about Alphabet soup!!!  Three books about it, cooking it together, making pretend alphabet soup together with a relay and naming things that started with the letter we drew and tricking Daddy with our alphabet soup for dinner - the kids were in their own alphabet soup in the bathtub!  But we really ate what was in the crockpot!

Ants - learning all kinds of facts

Watching a really cool Disney nature video about Arctic animals like musk ox, caribou, grizzlies, wolves etc.  And also reading books and watching you tube videos and doing our animal devotional book about arctic and other animals.

Reading a million books about animals, alphabet, arachnids, ants, apples, etc., etc.

Learning the 12 apostles song and memorizing “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” Joshua 24:15

LOTS of formal reading and math curriculum with phonograms, site words, etc. and pattern blocks, unifix cubes, etc.

Addition practice  

Learning some of Aaron Copland’s (an “A”merican composer) music like Appalachian Spring and Rodeo

Looking at different A places on the globe including Alaska and getting a better understanding of it’s scope and postition in the arctic

Practicing letter formation of lowercase a

Learning more about fine art and artists


Melissa said...

You are amazing!!!! Can we come to your homeschool? Please. :)
Nice work with all the A activities! I'm impressed!

Kori said...

I wish you were here (or us there) to do rhythm with my kids! Other things too, but the rhythm stuff...we need it.:)

Mindy S. said...

There are so many things about this post that I LOVE! The one that stuck out the most to me though is the ornament that Jeremy made. I couldn't help but think of all of the wood things that your Poppy made and cut out and Sweetie painted/decorated. This made me cry tears of sweet memories. I also think that I need to get Katelyn some letter tiles.

Ashli K said...

If we move back to Colorado will you home school my kids for me? :)