Monday, August 13, 2012

A Year at a Glance and Kindergarten Graduation

It's time to jump into another year of homeschooling and we are EXCITED! 

But first I want to look back at our first year of homeschooling and the celebration that marked its successful completion:

We used this:

Sonlight P4/5 Core plus Kindergarten readers: Exploring God's World

We supplemented with Math from and's fact drill sheets and occasional science experiments from Science Play! The curriculum above included social studies, language arts, science, reading, and art. It included nursery rhymes and fables, missionary stories from faraway lands, and workbooks for developing critical thinking and fine motor skills. We learned all the first and last names in the family, memorized our address, and talked about phone etiquette and emergency protocol. We read through Book of Mormon Stories and Old Testament Stories. We sang Primary songs and nursery rhymes, and danced to Ella Elephant Scats Like That. We copied and were inspired by great works of classic art and the fun tissue paper collages of Eric Carle in Animals, Animals.

Sir Gilgamesh (age 4 during most of the program) learned to read at a first grade level, and developed an affinity for refrigerator magnet number math. He learned how to sit still and be respectful of his teachers during Sunday School (and earned a trip to the zoo after being good for eight Sundays). His growth by leaps and bounds this year has been a miracle to witness, and a lot of fun, too.

Here's our school year (which was actually more like 18 months) in pictures:
Pocket chart schedule

Playing with letters to make words (self-directed)

Spelling to "Word World"

First memorized scripture

It's a crown, not an anti-alien foil hat. :)

Great wall of China? Close, but no. This is a net for table tennis.

Buy it Right with Daddy, learning about money

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, what do you see?

Sir Gilgamesh, 4 years old

Sir Alastor, 2 years old
Silly Mommy

Spider craft!

Clock tower

Our graph of Teddy Bears

Seek and Find puzzle

Build-a-birdhouse project with Daddy
Gilgamesh oversees the construction

Then paints it.

Sir Alastor sits with us during reading time

Sir Gilgamesh made me flowers
Buzz and Woody, good buddies

We are Barbie, Golf Ken, Woody, and Buzz from Toy Story 3

Scraping out pumpkins to paint

Johnny Appleseed lesson
Count the apple seeds and add them together

Building together
Holy Crow, that's tall!!

Pretty exciting tower.

White on black art

Gilgamesh's idea.


Autumn nature walks
Wild children

Stuffed animalpalooza


Gross motor skills up the wazoo (this is a two-year-old)

Gilgamesh's girl and boy puppies


Snowflakes for the season
Why are they sitting on a frozen turkey? It's an inside joke thing...

Announcing! Due in June with baby #3

Happy Thanksgiving!

Some trees are too spooky to climb

Best buddies

Christmas candy

Cider and donuts after a night of caroling (Christmas Eve)

Tuckered out after going shooting together for the first time

Awesomest babysitters

Christmas party

This is math!!! Counting the logs as he walks across.

Sir Alastor loves the wagon, but why isn't it moving!

Tinker Toy airplane with Daddy

Homemade California rolls in California

Great preschool activity: jump on G! Okay, now jump to L!
Gilgamesh's writing practice.

Sir Alastor's army of H's. He's picking things up from his brother.

Fun with sidewalk chalk.

Numbers practice

Looks like an L, but it's the beginning of a pillow.
He wanted a robot, so we made one from garbage and stickers

Welcome to California! Gilgamesh has this flag memorized now.

And he gave it a nap

He showed an interest in basketball
We decided it was time for the littlest one to learn about babies

Not used to the cold!

Pickle ball. It's a real sport.

Playing Kinect Sports
Leapfrog Clickstart games

BrainQuest on a roadtrip
All ready for Gilgamesh's first basketball class

He's a natural! (Coach says so.)

Christmas present: huge art kit

Sight Words popcorn

The Tinker Toys elevator

Great grandpa and the boys

Meeting his great grandma

Chore cards. These make doing chores like a game.

Baking homemade wheat bread. Gilgamesh is really good at rolling it out now.

Learning geography and puzzles together with Backpack Bear
(one of Gilgamesh's birthday presents; he's five now!)

Headed to play in the sand

Jungle gym


Gilgamesh loves pulling Alastor in their new wagon
Hours of fun!

Sorting the Tinker Toys

Tissue paper flowers

Threading cheerios

Copying the masters

Still learning the difference between addition and multiplication
and the signs, but you get the idea!

Angry birds in real life: mechanical assessment practice

Groundhogs Day!
Valentine's Math: yummy!

Beads to thread

Puzzles to sort

Tinker Toys fiddle. He made a musical triangle after this.

Tinker Toys car

Alastor likes basketball, too.

Gilgamesh is an old pro now.

Got dribbling skillz!
Taking a water break

Ready to play, but not old enough for the class... yet

Math Mat!! Run, jump, or walk, but hurry!

Buzz Lightyear party

All boys fun!

No education is complete until we've introduced THE PINATA!

Toy story toys!

Home economics in kindergarten
Home economics includes cleaning, right?

Sailboat project with Daddy
Goofy about to paint
Artist at work.
Finished product. It floats in the bathtub!

Keeping the records like a good mommy

Book nook! Now that Gilgamesh is reading at a 1st grade level,
we needed the books to be more accessible.

Happy St. Patrick's Day! Drawing with green pudding. Tasty.

Math time with dessert-shaped manipulatives

Caps for Sale! Guess what children's book we just read!

New chart to motivate Gilgamesh on Sundays; if he's good for 8 weeks, he gets a zoo trip.

Writing his own music
Playing his song, which is a medley of children's songs and hymns. It was beautiful.

School: find the hidden objects

School: find faces and feelings
Put them in groups that are similar

Puppet show!

It starts with an A.

Classification of objects
Color the picture that... 

First poem

Letters for Daddy and the rest of the family 

Giant thinking cap!

Fishing for sight words

Painting outside
Searching for earth worms at the Science Festival

Science Festival, starfish and urchin
The snake goes... *tongue out*

Shiny new bike and helmet! He earned these with good behavior.

Bike time with Daddy.

A working family farm for Easter.

with Grandpa

And we got to pick strawberries!

Alastor is a natural on a pony.
Reminds me of George Washington @ our visit to the Ronald Reagan library
and the George Washington exhibit.

Gilgamesh is getting tall!

Happy Easter!

My knights at the Kid's Camp at a run for the cure, a cancer event.
Mom and Dad were volunteering.

In our Helping Hands vests.

Nature walks galore

After a LOT of learning, Sir Gilgamesh received a diploma at a family party just for him. We had cake, goodie bags, singing, and a special hat just for him. He's all set for first grade now!! Well, he will be after a wild and crazy summer.

 *happy sigh*

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